Waco country singer Holly Tucker — who landed the 5:30 p.m. performing slot right before the Charlie Daniels Band at 6 p.m. at Sunday's Bowen MusicFest (nice job!) — is releasing a new single from her album "Steel" these days.
It's "Dallas On Your Boots," written by Jay DeMarcus (Rascal Flatts) and Caitlyn Smith and starting airing yesterday, June 1, on country radio stations. It arrived last Friday on Spotify and Apple Music and the earlier date signifies the growing important of streaming services to performers these days.
Holly, in fact, writes about this on her blog. She points out (midway on the blog post) that it's not about a source of revenue for an artist (though it can serve as one, if streaming numbers are high enough), but the source of numbers that venue owners and record label execs pay attention to.
A musician with thousands, even tens of thousands of Spotify or Pandora listeners is more likely to persuade a booking agent to hire her than a similar artist with no Spotify following — the streaming and download numbers suggest fan base size and popularity, which impact how much money a venue might make from hiring a performer.
Digital music has shifted the ways how musicians make money. Where it was once was album and ticket sales that provided much of that, now concert tickets and merchandise are the drivers of income.
Holly fans have the chance to see her perform Sunday afternoon — as well as Wade Bowen, Charlie Daniels and some 20 other country musicians — but if others want to catch her via streaming media, downloading an album or listening on the radio, I suspect she'd be fine with that as well.