Soundcloud Should Have Died


These days, these are the end of days. I say so mainly due to the fact that there’s a high frequency of Soundcloud rappers crossing over into the more accessible light, which more consumers can reach and potentially give these artists money (aka streaming service giants like Spotify). If you remember back in July of this year, there were rumors of Soundcloud planning to meet its demise since it didn’t have enough funding to operate but only 50 more days. Although a rep for the company shot this claim down, that didn’t excuse the fact the company had to layoff 40 percent of its workforce to maintain fiscal sustainability. Let's not also forget, the messiah himself tweeted that he had talked with higher ups within the company to figure out solutions to help Soundcloud stay afloat. Surely enough, after this interaction Soundcloud had secured funds to continue operations (thank you Chance). This alleged philanthropic act is admirable, but that brings me back to my main case - Soundcloud should have definitely went under and never been allowed to come back.

In the book “Rhymin’ and Stealin’: Musical Borrowing in Hip-Hop”, author Justin Williams argues that “[old music] becomes transformed into something new, something different, something hip-hop.” When a rap song uses preexisting materials – whether it’s a famous speech, a news clip, or elements of an old song – these artistic tidbits are creatively reinvented and can introduce listeners to a multitude of genres and melodic styles from across the musical spectrum.

The easy barriers of entry into Soundcloud was what made it so versatile at first. It was, and still is, easy for anyone to literally put their music out there and gain exposure. We’ve been gifted with many artists who had their humble beginnings on Soundcloud. Lil Uzi Vert, Lil Yachty, and even Chance the Rapper himself shares a lot of their work on the platform. But I feel like these artists are literal chosen ones with some degree of talent and entertainment abilities. Now we have artists like Lil Pump, who is currently on track to have a record breakout with the release of his self-titled album, set to sell at least 40,000 units and is tied for the number one album of the week. This is the fuel for my outrage with Soundcloud. Soundcloud is to blame for creating this monster. Just about every Lil Pump song on his Soundcloud account has well over a million plays- with the highest garnering about 30 million. Now let that sink in... This sixteen year old rapper, with objectively no talent, who’s only pressing thing to rap about is his jewelry collection, Gucci, and xanax, is gathering more attention than more deserving artists.