The launch of Jay Z’s new Tidal streaming service featured Beyoncé, Rihanna, Kanye West, Jack White, Arcade Fire, Usher, Nicki Minaj, Coldplay, Alicia Keys, Calvin Harris, Daft Punk, deadmau5, Jason Aldean, J. Cole and Madonna.
And it was possibly the most awkward press conference you’ll ever see.
1. Alicia Keys made it sound like the Declaration of Independence
“We come together before you on this day, March 30th 2015, with one voice in unity, in the hopes that today will be another one of those moments in time, a moment that will forever change music history.”
Just “music history”, not history in general?
2. Chris Martin and Calvin Harris were forced to peer over shoulders a lot
To prove the theory that few people like conference calls, and absolutely no-one enjoys video calls, the Coldplay singer and the Dumfries DJ looked a bit embarrassed to be represented by a TV on stage.
3. Friedrich Nietzsche would have totally used Tidal over Spotify
In one particularly memorable line, Alicia Keys said:
“We believe Friedrich Nietzsche couldn’t have been more right when he said: ‘without music, life would be a mistake’.”
Yes, Alicia Keys referenced Nietzche.
4. Deadmau5 and Madonna somehow upped the awkward levels
They’re not exactly best buddies after Deadmau5 criticised Madge’s alleged “molly” ecstasy reference back in 2012. But their supposed burial of the hatchet didn’t exactly go to plan, did it?
5. And Madonna has an unusual method of signing documents
Madonna also showed that she’s incapable of executing a task as simple as signing her name without trying to outdo everyone else on stage.
6. This is serious business, folks
Everyone put on their best poker face for the occasion (with Deadmau5 and Daft Punk we can only speculate). It was if what they were announcing was for the good of mankind, and not just, y’know, their bank balances.
So what about Tidal itself?
Well, aside from the fact that it promises higher-quality audio, its other main selling point is the prospect of “exclusive content”. Given the support of Jay Z’s famous friends, this shouldn’t have been difficult to procure.
And yet the launch content was pretty measly: Rihanna’s new single ‘Bitch Better Have My Money’, Daft Punk’s 2006 film Electroma, and playlists from Coldplay (‘Songs That Formed The Band’) and Beyoncé (‘festival favourites’) were the pick of the bunch.
No sign of an exclusive Kanye album, or anything to make the world sit up and take notice.
Instead, we witnessed the bizarre spectacle of a room full of the world’s biggest pop stars pretending they were in the UN.
Watch the full press conference in full again, if you dare:
Main image: Getty Images
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