K-pop songs to return to Spotify after new agreement with Kakao M

Jaehwa Bernardo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 11 2021 11:36 AM | Updated as of Mar 11 2021 03:47 PM

K-pop songs to return to Spotify after new agreement with Kakao M 1
Soloist IU and hip hop group Epik High were among some of the artists whose music disappeared from Spotify after the streaming service’s licensing deal with distributor Kakao M lapsed in early March. Instagram: @dlwlrma/ @ blobyblo

MANILA -- (UPDATE) Songs by K-pop artists are coming back to Spotify after the Swedish streaming service renewed a licensing agreement with Korean music distributor Kakao M.

In a statement sent Thursday to ABS-CBN News, representatives from Spotify and Kakao M said both companies came to an agreement, allowing music content from the Korean distributor to become available again on the streaming platform, which has 345 million listeners globally.

The spokesperson from Spotify also said songs from Kakao M are now available on its South Korean service, which was not the case when it first entered the Korean streaming market in February.

“We are pleased that Kakao Entertainment’s content and artists are back on Spotify, allowing our 345M+ global listeners across 170 countries to once again enjoy the music they love,” the Spotify spokesperson said.

“Through its diverse partnerships around the world including Spotify, Kakao Entertainment hopes that music lovers around the world can easily access its artists’ and music content to enjoy K-pop,” the spokesperson from Kakao M said.

On March 1, hundreds of songs by singers under Kakao M disappeared from the service after the lapse of a licensing deal between the two parties, prompting some K-pop fans to cancel their premium Spotify membership.

Acts affected by the issue include IU, Epik High, Seventeen, GFriend, Nu’est, Mamamoo, Monsta X, WJSN, Loona, Golden Child, The Boyz, Momoland, and Pentagon, among others.

Spotify launched in South Korea on February 1 in a highly anticipated rollout in the competitive streaming market dominated by Melon, which is run by Kakao M.

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