Detroit musicians to receive grant from Tidal streaming service

Melody Baetens
The Detroit News

Five Detroit-based artists will get support from Tidal music streaming service to help them with their music careers. 

Songwriter Emma Guzman, R&B singer Laurie Love, folk/pop artist Olivia Millerschin, singer/songwriter Raye Williams and hip-hop artist Sam Austins have been chosen for the inaugural Tidal Unplugged grant among the thousands of submissions. 

Detroit musicians Raye Williams, left, Olivia Millerschin, Emma Guzman, Laurie Love and Sam Austins have won a grant from Tidal Unplugged

Teamed up with philanthropists Robert Nelsen and Mark Lampert, the global streaming platform launched Tidal Unplugged in February. The program will give independent artists the funds they need to book studio time, take lessons, buy equipment and have access to marketing and tour support. 

Each Detroit-area musician will produce three songs that will premiere exclusively on Tidal, which is streamed in 53 countries and has more than 60 million songs in its catalog. The company is co-owned by Jay-Z and other musicians. 

“Detroit has been home to so many iconic musicians, and the Tidal Unplugged search gave us a glimpse into the multitude of bright, new talent in the region today. While we received many compelling entries, our winners, whose sounds range from R&B to folk to rap, rose to the top,” said Jason Kpana, Tidal SVP of artist relations in a press release. “We’re honored to be able to provide these talented artists with the tools and mentorship needed to develop their craft creatively and professionally.”

A rep for Tidal couldn't say exactly how much each musician would be granted, but that they'll each get a unique package tailored to their needs. The Unplugged program is a $1 million endowment. 

Next, Tidal plans to open the program to other markets.

Twitter: @melodybaetens