PeachTree Music Group

Tuesday, March 23, 2021


Exotic and stylishly arranged as to move our focus progressively towards the vocal’s relationship with the percussion, Poppy Colon’s “Bad Girls” doesn’t have a dull moment in the entirety of its four minute running time. Instead of relying on a sample, Poppy Colon conjures up a gorgeous guitar melody to use as his main backdrop here, tempting us with a textural element in the mix as frequently as he does his command of the lyrics. “Bad Girls” might have plenty of counterparts on the radio at the moment, but if you’re looking for something consistently enthralling on an instrumental and vocal level, it stands alone. I was impressed in my initial sit-down with the song, but in the time that’s passed I’ve only grown more intrigued by this material’s vibrant sway. 


Though the groove feels like the most important part here other than the strut of the vocal, I wouldn’t put all of the credit on the percussive arrangement alone. There’s just as much action coming off of the bassline and even the construction of the mix itself, which alludes to some dancehall and Latin pop influences I want him to emphasize all the more in his music. Poppy Colon has never been shy about putting himself out there in a performance, and while the lyrics in this song are less than vulnerable, everything from the surface stuff to the depth of the tonality the instrumentation presents feels really exposed and unhidden by the synthetic nonsense his peers tend to hide behind when making experimental music. 

“Bad Girls” has as simple a pop hook as you can work into a harder rap track, and yet my man never sounds like he’s relenting against the pressure of the implied harmony. The attack he’s utilizing is straight up retro DMX, but it’s not nearly as aggressive as one would need it to be in order to brand the track an homage. There’s nothing recycled about the way the melody winds up married to the pulsating kick of the drum, but instead a feeling of insularity that becomes increasingly difficult to escape as we get closer to the finish line. Poppy Colon has toyed with some ambitious work in the studio before, but this is an affirmation of his alternative interests more than it is anything else. 


An amazing song at blistering or moderate volumes just the same, Poppy Colon’s “Bad Girls” feels like the right addition to make to this artist’s growing body of work at the moment. Critically speaking, there’s not enough here for me to say that he’s outwardly inviting influences from reggae, rock and even old guard gangster music, but I think you’d have to be crazy to ignore the way his approach is starting to diversify. Hybrids are literally everywhere in pop at the moment, but this doesn’t sound deliberately geared towards a pseudo hipster audience (as much of the other crossover content has). Poppy Colon is the real article, and his passion inside of “Bad Girls” definitely solidifies his rep in this industry even more than it already was. 

Garth Thomas

Spotify new numbers, my new single

Did you see what Spotify just released? It's a hopeful step in the direction of being a bit more transparent by the streaming behemoth. The new 'Loud and Clear' site outlines the (macro) economics around how streaming works on the platform. One of the biggest takeaways for me is the number of artists actually earning from streaming. And how much!

+If Spotify Won't Pay More, They Should Give Us More Data

In 2020:

- 184,500 artists made over $1,000
- 67,200 artists made over $5,000
- 42,100 artists made over $10,000
- 13,400 artists made over $50,000
- 7,800 artists made over $100,000
- 1,820 artists made over $500,000
- 870 artists made over $1,000,000

Let's put this in perspective. In Indonesia, the average annual salary is around $10,000. In India and Brazil it's $5,000. And in the US, the median annual salary is just under $50,000. So, depending on where you live, it seems a significant number of musicians are earning a living just from Spotify royalties (not to mention Apple Music, or any other avenue). 

Now, let's not forget that 100% of this money does not go direclty to the artists in many cases. Many of these artists are signed to labels or distributors who keep a percentage of these royalties.

+DistroKid vs. Tunecore vs. CD Baby vs. United Masters vs. Amuse vs. AWAL vs. Stem vs...

And if you don't have someone collecting your publishing royalties (performance AND mechanical) then you're missing out on about 1/5 of all of your money. Check out this article on how to get that money.

+Songtrust vs. Sentric vs. CD Baby Publishing vs. Tunecore Publishing

And, isn't it nuts that nearly 8,000 artists are making more than $100,000 just from Spotify? So next time someone says that Spotify doesn't pay, you can politely correct them. It's a weird and crazy time we're in right now. 

+Spotify Removed Your Music, Now What

Another big takeaway, is that over 550,000 tracks have surpassed 1 million streams (207,000 in just 2020). Now, I know this stat might make you feel quite shitty if you're not the artist behind one of these songs, but don't let this discourage you. Let it encourage you! Tens of thousands of artists are making a living just from Spotify revenue. Make it your goal this year to be one of them! 

At Ari's Take, we're working with some experts in the space to help you achieve streaming success and be one of these artists. We're about to reveal the goods. Stay tuned... 

And last, but (hopefully) not least. I released a new single today. "Birthday" is a piano ballad about reflecting but not dwelling. Being grateful without celebration. 


Take a listen here.

If you do the Spotify thing, please add it to your playlists and smash that heart button. It all helps. We're all in this crazy music community together. 

I'd love to hear your thoughts on the song (just hit reply). 


PS - Have you checked out our report on how much each distributor pays per stream for Spotify and Apple (by country)? We're adding new reports/distros everyday. Check it out here. 


Follow Ari's Take on Instagram @aristake_ and TikTok @aris.take for daily doses of inspiration.

Keep up on Twitter: @aristake

Subscribe to the New Music Business podcast


+Who is Ari? 


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