The advent of music streaming platforms and the emergence of independent digital distribution services like Tunecore and Distrokid have made it exponentially easier for scrappy, independent musicians to get their recorded music out into the world. While these developments have certainly lowered the barrier of entry into the music industry, it hasn’t eliminated all the logistical hurdles that come with even modest success.
But streaming platform Tidal is apparently working to open the door wider and give more artist the opportunity to pursue a career in music. On Thursday, the Swedish streaming service that Jay-Z purchased in 2015 announced that it would be launching Tidal Unplugged, a grant program that will provide a select group of independent artists funding to cover living expenses, equipment, studio time, and other creative resources.
According to a press release on the company’s website, the program is also going to provide the selected artists industry mentoring, promotional support, and the opportunity to perform in a Tidal Unplugged Showcase. “This once-in-a-lifetime opportunity allows aspiring musicians to dedicate more time and energy to seeking a career as an artist,” it continued.
The program will kick off in Detroit. Starting on March 1, local artists will have the opportunity to submit their music for the chance to win a share of a reported $1 million in grant money.