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Podcast short: A LÜMp sum

Why is Madison’s Live Nation subsidiary investing in a locally developed music app?

The Capital Times reported on Monday that Madison concert promoter FPC Live took part in a $750,000 funding round for LÜM, a music-streaming app developed in Madison. LÜM is currently in its second test version and heading for a public launch later this summer. An earlier test version in 2018 left us with some questions about whether it can provide an effective platform for helping musicians connect with fans. This week, Tone Madison‘s Shaun Soman and Scott Gordon delve further into those questions, and ask what the company’s partnership with FPC—a subsidiary of Live Nation—means for both the local music community and Madison’s efforts to become more of a tech town.

The developers of LÜM have pitched it as an answer to the shortcomings of streaming giants like Spotify, whose business models favor more established artists. The idea is that LÜM will be just for independent artists with smaller followings. But there’s currently no way for artists to earn money directly through LÜM (the company says some revenue streams are coming, but won’t share any details about what they’ll look like). The app itself, which combines streaming functions with social media-style timelines and connectivity, can feel a bit cluttered.

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Give the conversation a listen here, or subscribe to the Tone Madison podcast on Apple Podcasts. If you like what you’re hearing, please leave us a review on Apple Podcasts and consider supporting us financially with a one-time or recurring donation. And please check out our sister podcasts, Record Store Dropouts and Digital Warmth.

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