The music livestreaming revolution is in full swing thanks to apps like Twitch and Sessions. (Related: Logic just signed an exclusive 7-figure deal with Twitch after also announcing his "retirement").
And a lot of artists have questions of Sessions, the newer livestreaming app that is designed exclusively for musicians and music-related streams. Well, we're here to answer some of your questions about the new startup aiming to carve out an important space in music livestreaming.
What Is Sessions?
Sessions is a new-ish app for livestreaming. We say new-ish because while the platform itself is less than a year old, it's based off of NEXT Music (same people behind it), which has been around substantially longer.
In fact, the folks at Sessions say they built the app thanks to the popularity of the livestreaming component of NEXT Music.
The app is, at its core, meant to be a music-first livestreaming platform where artists can make money performing songs. It's not that different from Twitch, YouTube Live, or Facebook Live in terms of functionality: get your video and audio set up, plug in the stream key, and go for it.
How Is Sessions Different?
For starters, you need to apply to become an artist. That means everybody on the platform has at least been vetted at some level by the Sessions team. Which also means viewers can expect the streams to be higher quality and more relevant to their musical interests right off the bat.
Sessions also has a program for certain artists called "Touring Artists," which guarantees a certain amount of "Love" (read: money) per stream, regardless of who is watching or how much they tip you.
Sessions also is working hard to drive parts of its built-in audience to different streamers. While new acts could feasibly stream to 1 or 2 people for months on end on a platform like Twitch, Sessions has way fewer people live at any given time, which means artists are typically performing for people right away.
How Do I Make Money On Sessions?
The primary way is receiving "Love," which is the Sessions equiavlent of Twitch's "bits" or Facebook's "stars." Basically, fans tip you when they like what they see and hear. They can request certain songs on your list for guaranteed Love etc.
As mentioned above, the app also does guarantee a certain amount of Love to certain artists when they schedule shows. It typically rounds out to about $5 an hour capped at 6 hours per week, meaning Touring Artists can make a guaranteed $30 a week on top of the Love they get from fans for streaming 6 hours. The idea of making $120 a month right off the bat livestreaming is actually really solid, especially for new acts.
Sessions also runs some weekly leaderboard contests where the top 10 streamers get between $50 and $500, depending on their rank.
What Else Do I Need To Know?
Sessions is still new. They're still figuring out a lot of things. But they do a really good job of communicating with streamers. They have weekly town halls to answer questions and some artists get assigned stream managers etc.
Sessions is also working on ways to help streamers better connect with people who come in to their streams.
Tim Westergren, who co-founded Pandora radio in the early 2000s, is heavily involved with (and invested in) Sessions, so there is some industry clout attached. The app is iterating fairly rapidly and in an increasingly crowded space, Sessions is doing what it can to stay different enough to matter to music streamers.