Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh launches new digital music streaming platform

STACKS, the Library’s exclusive streaming platform, promotes Pittsburgh musicians and pays them for their work

Pittsburgh, PA  –   – 

Watch out, Spotify — Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh will join the music-streaming industry with the launch of its new digital project STACKS on February 15, 2019 in collaboration with Rabble’s Pittsburgh office.

The program is a digital project that decreases barriers for local musicians and connects the community to Pittsburgh artists. The public can listen to the streaming service from the STACKS web player and patrons with a library card can download songs for free. The Library plans to open submissions at least twice a year, at which point artists can submit their music to be considered for STACKS. A jury made up of Library staff and music industry influencers, like Jim Cunningham, a veteran Pittsburgh public radio voice, assess the submissions to create a curated selection.

“STACKS is a continuation of our goal to promote the individual achievement of our patrons while supporting the Pittsburgh music scene,” said Toby Greenwalt, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh’s Director of Digital Strategy and Technology Integration. “Pittsburgh has always had a lively music scene, but changes in the industry have created many challenges for smaller musicians. We hope this platform will be one way to help these talented individuals thrive starting in their hometown.”

The first round of artists has been selected and will debut their work on STACKS on February 15, 2019. The jury chose 40 artists from 165 entries collected and reviewed this past fall. Artists represent all genres including beloved Lawrenceville folk singer Slim Forysthe and {arsonist}, a Carnegie Mellon computational neuroscience PhD candidate who combines coding and elements of electronic music to make her sound.

Selected STACKS artists are not only promoted on the platform, they’re also paid a one-time stipend of $200 for their albums of at least 10 minutes long or four tracks. By contrast, artists would have to amass over 23,000 plays to make that much from a streaming service like Spotify at their upper rate of $.0084 per play. This feat is often impossible for small artists with limited resources to promote their work.

STACKS is made possible by MUSICat, a software created by Pittsburgh- and Madison-based startup Rabble. The startup works with libraries across the nation to build digital solutions, empowering cities from Pittsburgh to Seattle and Nashville to offer their communities a place to celebrate their rich music history while uplifting current artists.

To listen to music from local musicians and to learn more about the curators, please visit



About Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh - To Engage our Community in Literacy and Learning

Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh is supporting individual achievement and strengthening the power of community. Through the community’s investment, the Library is enhancing the lives of people in the greater Pittsburgh region with dynamic and diverse resources such as creative learning programs for children and teens, job and career assistance for our community's workforce, and free computer and Internet access for all. Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh builds community, enables learning, provides access and values people.