Halsey: Label won't release music without 'fake viral TikTok moment'
American singer Halsey dropped a bombshell on social media on Sunday. They spoke about their music label's dereliction, alleging that their new song has been put on hold. Apparently, the label wants them to engineer a "fake viral moment" on TikTok first, before rolling out the said song. A visibly distraught Halsey said on the short video app: "Everything is marketing." More details inside.
- The 27-year-old debuted with their studio album Badlands in 2015 and was featured on The Chainsmokers' hit single Closer the next year.
- They earned worldwide recognition through their second album Hopeless Fountain Kingdom, which became the No. 1 album on the Billboard 200 chart.
- Halsey became the latest artist to openly speak about absurd pressures and demands imposed by music companies.
In a viral TikTok video posted on Sunday, the singer complained that their new song, which they "love" and want to "release ASAP," is being held back from getting released. In the background, the unreleased song was heard playing. They added, "Everything is marketing, and they are doing this to basically every artist these days. I just wanna [want to] release music, man."
Ironically, several fans thought that Halsey's "complaint" video, which clocked in over 7M views in 24 hours, was part of a promotional campaign. However, the Eastside singer quashed these claims on Twitter, saying, "I'm way too established to stir something like this up or resort to this as a marketing tactic." "If you have questions, I have answers. I have nothing to hide."
The artist's label, Capitol Music Group gave a clarification to Entertainment Weekly. "Our belief in Halsey as a singular and important artist is total and unwavering." A company spokesperson said, "We can't wait for the world to hear their brilliant new music." Notably, the Without Me singer and the label go way back. Halsey has been associated with Astralwerks, Capitol Records' subsidiary since 2014.
Last year, singer JoJo had asked on Twitter whether her label asking her to make her songs viral on TikTok was a "fair" strategy proposal. FKA Twigs had also revealed, "All record labels ask for TikToks, and I got told off for not making enough effort." Earlier this year, Florence Welch wrote, "The label is begging me for low-fi TikToks so here you go."