The National and Bon Iver launch streaming service ‘PEOPLE’, share Leonard Cohen cover

The artists have also announced a Berlin-based festival

The National‘s Aaron and Bryce Dessner and Bon Iver have today released a BETA version of their streaming service PEOPLE.

Created in collaboration with entrepreneurs Tom and Nadine Michelberger, the five are keen to explain that PEOPLE is not a competitor of Spotify, Apple Music or TIDAL.

“It’s artist-directed,” Aaron told the Guardian. “It’s entirely non-commercial. It’s about the work.”


Bryce added: “It’s trying to deformalise some of the artifice and structure that goes into releasing music, and to get a little bit closer to the creative and collaborative process, and to the people.”

The PEOPLE website states: “We want to create a place to evolve and share ideas around the year. That’s why we are in the process of building our own digital platform where the music from recordings, sessions and live events as well as visual art, podcasts and essays can find a home. For all the raw, the unpackaged, the experiments and the evolved ideas.”

You can see a BETA version of PEOPLE here, while the full launch will take place in August.

The collective originally came together in 2016 during Berlin’s Michelberger Music event. They’ve now announced a 2018 festival, where 160+ artists will stay in Berlin for a residency from August 12-20. The pubic are invited to enjoy performances at Funkhaus Berlin on August 18 and 19.

“There will be artists you have not heard before and ones you know every song of,” the PEOPLE website states. “There are no headliners or bands, sponsors or brands, billing or programming. It is brought to life by you and us.”


“It’s about new material, collaborations, unique arrangements and dissolving borders.”

They have also shared a cover of Leonard Cohen’s ‘Memories,’ featuring vocals from The National’s Matt Berninger and Sufjan Stevens.

It was recorded in August 2016 but only released this year. You can listen to it here.