I've only been on Spotify for two days now myself, but I've been seeing the royalty statements for some time...
Here is the total skinny from my perspective as an artist and label.
It a wonderful promotional tool, IF... it's used in that manor.
What Spotify really is, much like LastFM is an alternative self producing radio station. It's funded by ad's and by subscribers.
Song royalties are paid out on plays, but these are very very small, and when I say small, I mean like under a penny a streaming play. So artists and labels are not making really anything in plays but plays don't hurt them and they do eventually add up to a cheeseburger and fries, maybe even a coke for most artist every month (not enough to feed the full band even one meal at McDonald's I'm sorry to say...) BUT....
This is still a good thing....on a couple of levels...
what this is doing is helping the industry in a way, by replacing the desire to download music illegally from torrents, also taking away any possibility of getting a download virus, and giving you simply an amazing amount of new music to search and explore and to find and (psssst here's the good part) tell others about, in hopes they'll fall in love with the music and buy it on itunes or on CD.
If all members were to sign up via facebook and lastfm accounts, then when they play a song, or an album, it shows up in their status on Facebook and it scrobbles the song on LastFM also giving another secondary royalty to the artist (I believe) But this raises the plays then for the artist on both sites and
that in turn raises their popularity and visibility. LastFM actually sells music on their site as well, we get all kinds of sales from that site, hopefully Spotify will follow suit on that soon.
If you want to champion the artist and labels, you can (and please do) do it by making sure all your social media is hooked into your profile there.
Then you can send any song or even album, to a friends private message box on facebook, you can see who on facebook of your friends, help you promote your music also just by playing songs, if you're hooked in, as it will show up to your friends on your wall... as it happens. And if they have their facebook linked to their twitter accounts...etc... well you get the idea, one play can get a lot of eyes and then ears on it.
The power is in the player...and the connectivity to social media.
This is the gift of Spotify... not the royalties!