Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Music Businesses Media Apple

Sell Your Music on iTunes Music Store 432

Posted by pudge
from the gain-40-pounds-and-be-the-next-D dept.
Photo_Designer writes "CD Baby is now accepting music to be sold via digital distibution through iTunes Music Store, Listen.com and others. Their cut is 9 percent. The artists get 91 percent of the sale and retain all the rights to their music. There is a $40 fee for each album submitted. It will be interesting to see how much indie music gets on and how it does. Imagine being a touring indie band and be able to tell people to go to iTunes and buy your songs; it seems this could be a huge boon to musicians wanting to circumvent/boycott/avoid/destroy the RIAA." Note that this is not an agreement to get on iTMS or any other service, only for CD Baby to be your distributor. iTMS can still reject your sorry attempt at fame.
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Sell Your Music on iTunes Music Store

Comments Filter:
  • by davisshaver (583015) <canyougrokme.hotmail@com> on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:03PM (#6503314) Homepage
    This seems like a godsend for many of the bands my friends are in. For 40 dollars they have the chance to be distributed, instead of spending much more on CD's. What are the chances apple will accept them though? It seems like this is what they wanted from that conference they held with the Indie labels.
    • by darkov (261309) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:09PM (#6503439)
      What are the chances apple will accept them though?

      This is a good point. There would be labour overhead and storage costs for each album. Even if they fully automate the submission process, can Apple swallow the cost of thousands of albums sitting on their hard disks?

      What Apple might do is have a sales cut-off for artists, and maybe labels too. Sell a certain amount within a certain time or get kicked.
      • by jared_hanson (514797) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:14PM (#6503511) Homepage Journal
        Apple definately needs a solution to keep the quality of the selection resonably high. Don't get me wrong, I'm all for variety of choice, and I fully support independant bands. However, I would hate to see iTMS turn into a place where there is a bunch of crap music, sort of like MP3.com. No one will buy music there if they have to wade through sludge to find a choice indie band.
        • by MarcQuadra (129430) * on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:30PM (#6503764)
          Maybe a moderation system is in order?
          • by Cruciform (42896) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:38PM (#6503882) Homepage
            A nice idea, but imagine what it would be like in practice? Britney, Christina, and friends would all have amazing karma and artists like Brian Eno would languish at the bottom of the Hellmouth because mainstream people wouldn't get it.
            • Look at Amazon (Score:5, Insightful)

              by f97tosc (578893) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @05:10PM (#6504365)
              Maybe a moderation system is in order?

              A nice idea, but imagine what it would be like in practice? Britney, Christina, and friends would all have amazing karma and artists like Brian Eno would languish at the bottom of the Hellmouth because mainstream people wouldn't get it.

              I think Amazon has been quite successful in avoiding this. You search on specific key words and then look at ratings and reviews. They also have tips such as "people who bought this also liked that". This could work for music also.

              Tor
            • by SeanAhern (25764) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @05:55PM (#6504954) Journal
              I would certainly hope that any music moderation system would be more advanced and flexible than slashdot's. Taco would be one of the first to tell you that /.'s moderation system has shortcomings.

              Music would need many axes of moderation. Britney and Christina would certainly get moderated highly, as they are very popular. But only in their respective category.

              Different genres should have different moderation "tracks". I should be able to ask something like "What's the most highly moderated Celtic music this week?" or "People who liked Phish's latest album bought a number of other albums. What ones were the most popular?"

              If a moderation/rating system had that level of control, we'd have a effective and useful way of separating the wheat from the chaff, at a personal level.
          • by darkov (261309) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:48PM (#6504004)
            Maybe a moderation system is in order?

            I can see my tracks getting modded -1, Troll
        • by Roark Meets Dent (650119) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:35PM (#6503840)
          An easy solution would be to have a separate section for unsigned musicians. This would make it clear to paying customers whether they are shopping "mainstream" music or as-yet-unheard-of bands. I somehow doubt Apple would have any problems storing a few thousand CD's even if they didn't sell too well ... many people I know have that many on their personal hard drives thanks to P2P apps. Remember, Apple isn't selling CD images, they're selling compressed formats.
          • Duhhh... (Score:5, Insightful)

            by poptones (653660) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:46PM (#6503983) Journal
            Isn't the whole fucking point of this "new order" to avoid having to sign bands? What you want is what we've had for decades: a system where musicians who don't meet the marketing meddle of a few sharkskinned gatekeepers get quarrantined off into this "other place" where "the lesser bands go."

            Fuck that. Anyone who doesn't sell will either become discouraged and get a real job, or will persevere until they become great.

            There are how many bloggers out there?

            The cream will rise to the top even without the old maids at the churn.

          • "I somehow doubt Apple would have any problems storing a few thousand CD's even if they didn't sell too well"

            Plus it would give Apple a marketing boost to claim several million songs instead of several hundred thousand. Even if a large percentage were not of high enough quality to warrant a record label contract (not necessarily an indictment of their artistry these days) it still adds to the bottom line total. And quantity sells.

            I'm with you on separating these unsigned bands. But not so much segrega
        • wait a minute...why does apple need to control this? freedom is what this is all about. folks who want to download mp3's search through an amazing selection...which is what this is all about. if you know what you want, you'll know what you should get. this is going to be a big boon for the world's struggling artists. the only folks who should be panicking now are the fat cats that are milking the music industry gravy train...yes...the same engine that's depriving some pretty awesome talent from ever being
    • Better deals abroad (Score:5, Interesting)

      by poptones (653660) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:37PM (#6503867) Journal
      For forty dollars you can join the new label from Tom Misner [news.com.au] and have an online distribution chain that carries over into a worldwide CD distribution system. CDBaby is cool, but this really seems more like you're paying them to broker a deal with the people who have, for the most part, completely fucked up the music industry for the last decade.

      Not only that, but since 301 is a label with an established global infrastructure, there's a mechanism there [hyperstudy.com] to support an act no matter how popular it becomes. This guy is no small potatos [digitalprosound.com].

      • but this really seems more like you're paying them to broker a deal with the people who have, for the most part, completely fucked up the music industry for the last decade

        Who, Apple? Plus, if you'd actually read CDBaby's terms, you'd realize that their terms are actually quite reasonable. You're not signing with a label, nor is CDBaby your exclusive distributor - they're only your exclusive distributor for on-line distribution, which you can terminate at 30 days notice. Seems pretty flexible to me...
    • by strAtEdgE (151030) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @07:05PM (#6505928)
      Even if they fully automate the submission process, can Apple swallow the cost of thousands of albums sitting on their hard disks?

      If I can, why can't they?
  • Methinks... (Score:4, Funny)

    by Spazntwich (208070) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:03PM (#6503331)
    that pudge is harboring some ill will from a previous failed attempt at a career in indie music.
  • The trick will be how these guys work with the iTunes and Buy.com's of the world, and whether they actually offer anything of value. Compared to this setup [slashdot.org], though, it does sound like an opportunity for artists to get a bigger slice of the pie...
  • by bigjocker (113512) * on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:03PM (#6503337) Homepage
    It has been anounced today that the long expected album "CowboyNeal in the Tub / Greatest Hits" will hit the digital shelves any time this week
  • by eoyount (689574) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:03PM (#6503340)
    You'd only need to do $44 in sales to recoup your investment. Of course that assumes that you really get to keep 91% of revenue. What about Apple's cut, if you get on iTunes? Does that come out of their 9%?
    • I take it that you've never been in a band and made an album before. Where should I start...there's recording time and production costs along with other various rental and studio costs, graphic design, promotion, the physical medium for distribution (although online distribution negates this cost), etc...
      If it's only costing you 44 dollars to make a record, I don't want to hear it.
    • by dhovis (303725) * on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:34PM (#6503821)

      IIRC, Apple gives the record label (or CDBaby, in this case) 65 cents per 99 cent track. CDBaby will then take a 9% cut of that 65 cents, leaving the artist with about 59 cents from each track sold. NOT BAD!

      So if you managed to sell a little over a million tracks, you'd pocket a cool $600,000 dollars or so.

      • Apple gives the record label (or CDBaby, in this case) 65 cents per 99 cent track. CDBaby will then take a 9% cut of that 65 cents, leaving the artist with about 59 cents from each track sold.

        Right, 65 cents is the figure that I've read in a few articles about the iTunes Music Store. So, going on 59 cents is the artists cut that means that if you can sell about 68 tracks you will break even. At 12 tracks per album that means that if you sell 6 albums then you can make a profit, that's way better than

  • by luzrek (570886) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:04PM (#6503346) Journal
    Forget about Joe (or Jill) Artist, what about middle grade artists that have been perpetually screwed by their RIAA contracts.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      You make a deal with the devil you get screwed. It's that simple.
    • This will allow new artists to get some payback without having to sign a contract in the first place. The one deadlock that the RIAA has is on distribution, and without that many artists would never have to sign with a label at all.

      As for artists that have already signed, well, they're screwed.

      • However, they will miss out on the promotion that the dollars of a big label can provide--and, like it or not, that's how music gets heard. You'll still have the indies with their websites and live venues; presumably both will direct you to their stuff on the iTunes Music Store, cool. But you're not likely to hear them on the radio, nor are you going to see any print ads. Probably not interviews, either.

        So you'll still have to know where to look on the iTMS, or you'll have to browse really deeply.

        I th
  • by xyrw (609810) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:04PM (#6503361) Homepage
    I have to say, it looks like CD Baby is being very fair to the artists with this deal. The artists can even sell their music via other means, just not to the same store, and they can end the contract with 30 days' notice.

    Also, this could bring a fair amount of indie music to the iTMS. Personally, I'm all for it. Hopefully, CD Baby can get the word out effectively.
  • Great idea! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Goldberg's Pants (139800) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:05PM (#6503371) Journal
    It's gonna take a BIG organization outside the RIAA to come up with a system to beat them. iTunes is a great idea, and this new way of selling music is a good idea, though I think $40 is a bit steep. I think they should have an option. You either pay $40 to get the album on there OR they take a higher percentage of the revenue. (Say 15% instead of 9%.)

    Regardless, the RIAA have done themselves no favours with their continued insanity, and this iTunes venture comes on the heels of Michael Jackson (he may be a nutter, but he's one of the top grossing artists of all time) saying that going to jail for downloading MP3's is nuts and that the RIAA needs to find a new solution rather than making criminals out of people.

    So, anyone care to start an "RIAA Dead Pool". I reckon they'll be dead and gone by 2007.
    • Re:Great idea! (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Trigun (685027) <evil@evilempire.ath3.14159.cx minus pi> on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:08PM (#6503436)
      $40 bucks is nothing when compared to getting a CD mastered. Let alone distribution costs. If the band can't fork over $40 bucks, then their music probably isn't worth the $0.99 download.
      • by KalvinB (205500)
        The $40 I would imagine isn't so much intended to be a fee (it's really not much at all) but as a way to deter people who would otherwise submit any crap (or just unpolished material) they can come up with.

        HP had to lose the 1-800 number because so many people were calling about inane things and preventing the techs from helping people with actual problems.

        By charging a relativly small fee they cut off the bottom of the bucket (like people who sing songs about Laci Peterson) and encourage better bands not
    • Re:Great idea! (Score:4, Interesting)

      by JustAnotherReader (470464) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:19PM (#6503594)
      $40 is Steep? You must be joking. For less than the price of set of guitar strings and a tuner you can distribute your music. That's amazing.

      I love the idea of indie bands telling their audience We have CD's for sale here tonight or you can just go to CDBaby and buy them there". It's an easy to remember web site that the customers can still remember after a few beers.

      Great idea. I hope CDBaby makes millions (which means the bands they represent will make tens of millions. That's kind of a nice change isn't it?)

  • by jeeves99 (187755) * on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:05PM (#6503372)
    I've never heard of CDBaby. Their website looks very shoddy, as if they used a very basic WYSIWYG editor. I would also like to know how picky apple is about taking music from the labels. Do they take anything the labels feed them or are they selective in their choices? If they'll take anything, then CDBaby looks like a fantastic way to get wide-spread distribution. If not, then you've just wasted $40 on a pipedream.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:11PM (#6503468)
      From the horse's mouth:

      * Our servers are running 100% OpenBSD - the world's most secure operating system. Powered by Apache, PHP, and MySQL.
      * No Microsoft products were used in the creation of this website.
      * We try to stay HTML 4.0 compliant. No special web browser needed. (I recommend the Opera and Mozilla web browsers for their speed and standards.)
      * CD Baby website (front end and back end) made by me - Derek Sivers. It's my favorite hobby.

      http://www.cdbaby.com/about
    • by seasleepy (651293) <seasleepy@@@gmail...com> on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:20PM (#6503610)
      I've never bought from them personally, but they sound like a bunch of people that really love music...very small record-shop-ish. (See the bonus free CD [cdbaby.com] for returning customers.)
      A friend of mine who got something from them a while ago also thought their e-mail confirmation was absolutely hilarious:

      "Your CDs have been gently taken from our CD Baby shelves with sterilized contamination-free gloves and placed onto a satin pillow.

      A team of 50 employees inspected your CDs and polished them to make sure they were in the best possible condition before mailing.

      Our packing specialist from Japan lit a candle and a hush fell over the crowd as he put your CDs into the finest gold-lined box that money can buy.

      We all had a wonderful celebration afterwards and the whole party marched down the street to the post office where the entire town of Portland waved 'Bon Voyage!' to your package, on its way to you, in our private CD Baby jet on this day, Thursday, April 17th.

      I hope you had a wonderful time shopping at CD Baby. We sure did. Your picture is on our wall as "Customer of the Year". We're all exhausted but can't wait for you to come back to CDBABY.COM"
    • I liked their web site very much. It reminds me of Google.com, another no frills site some people around here may have heard of.

      I also very much like lawyer-free way the deal is explained. Even *I* understood it and I'm dumb at that sort of thing.

      Also their terribly good taste in OS's didn't hurt either.....

    • I just had a vey bad experience with CD Baby. I had bought a CD from them that was backordered. About nine months later it dawned on me I never got it. I contacted them via email about it and they did not respond. I had to contact the Artist (Paula Battaglia -- good CD when I got it) who contacted them before to get the issue resolved.

      Heh, they'll send you cutsey email telling you you're their number on customer though. Well, they do take your money fast. I would prefer getting customer support myself.

      A

    • by Anonymous Coward
      Think their website looks shoddy? You must not have seen slashdot's main page.
  • Screw that! (Score:4, Funny)

    by EinarH (583836) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:06PM (#6503392) Journal
    I'm already hooked up to a major RIAA label for life you insensitive clod!
  • by thatguywhoiam (524290) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:07PM (#6503407)
    This is it. The missing bridge.

    Now you can sell your own electronically encoded tunes on a gigantic global network that has a massive ad campaign behind it, for $40.

    Good for CD Baby. They negotiated the deal with Apple and seem to be happy to provide the connection. The terms are more than reasonable. Hell, for $40, I'd make an album just to *see* if I had any musical talent that anyone else appreciated. (er, I don't.)

    Now, what we need is some sort of powerful mechanism for allowing people to be introduced to music they'd like, but don't know the name of. I've often thought a moderation-style system similar to what Slashdot has would be useful. Of course, its ony a tiny hop from there to find all those wonderful demographics marketers crave.. you know.. the Volkswagen-Coke-Nintendo-Apple-Sony style connections...

    • by medeii (472309) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:25PM (#6503679)

      I'd love to mod this up, but I'll reply instead.

      CD Baby has that sort of mechanism, or at least something like it. Searching around the iTunes store didn't really help me much, because a lot of the music I listen to (Delerium, Balligomingo, Ceredwen, and assorted video game music) either isn't available, or really doesn't fall into any particular category. I went to read the article, then went to CD Baby and started browsing CDs. Their searching feature for something that "sounds like" a different artist caught my eye, and now I'm happily looking at different trance/tribal artists that, though certainly not mimicking Delerium, have a similar feel. I can't get that by going to a store, and this is the first time I've ever seen anyone give that sort of feature prominence.

      Anyone know of other online stores that feature this? CD Baby's got a good start, but I'm really not keen on the million albums that require RealPlayer for me to listen to them.

  • This is a good start I guess. Ultimately its still like having a label though. The artists should be able to go straight to Apple and take out yet another comapany that wants to play middleman.

    The big plus side about this though is that it really starts to bring Darwin to the music scene. If a song sucks, less people will buy it if there's better stuff out there. Obviously there are still kinks in this system, but its a HELLUVA lot better than before where if you weren't with a label, NOBODY would hear/b

  • by BeetMonster (635139) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:07PM (#6503417)
    Here's the proof, came with my invoice:

    Your CD has been gently taken from our CD Baby shelves with sterilized contamination-free gloves and placed onto a satin pillow.

    A team of 50 employees inspected your CD and polished it to make sure it was in the best possible condition before mailing.

    Our packing specialist from Japan lit a candle and a hush fell over the crowd as he put your CD into the finest gold-lined box that money can buy.

    We all had a wonderful celebration afterwards and the whole party marched down the street to the post office where the entire town of Portland waved 'Bon Voyage!' to your package, on its way to you, in our private CD Baby jet on this day, Tuesday, July 15th. I hope you had a wonderful time shopping at CD Baby. We sure did. Your picture is on our wall as 'Customer of the Year'. We're all exhausted but can't wait for you to come back to CDBABY.COM!!


    All that, and shipping was only $2.25!
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:09PM (#6503447)
    Imagine being a touring indie band and be able to tell people to go to iTunes and buy your songs; it seems this could be a huge boon to musicians wanting to circumvent/boycott/avoid/destroy the RIAA.

    Imagine being a touring indie band and telling 95% of your audience that your music is on the iTunes store but they cannot listen to it because they don't have a Mac! That will really show the RIAA!
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:11PM (#6503469)

    I've ordered a number of CDs from CDbaby recently in all cases after being in touch with the artist themselves - to find out where I could get their music from.

    These guys are good, they have a range of shipping options that make it possible to order internationally with no hassle - they'll ship cds with no cases so that it can go via post as opposed to package.

    The artists seem reasonably happy with their cut, in fact one told me that it was the first time he was able to pay his rent with CD sales.

    This may sound like an advert, but they really were a pleasant suprise. As i like music, that's mainly non-stream especially with the slashdot crowd (modern jazz & real fusion), it was great to find an outlet which stocked these.

    -- ac

  • by chia_monkey (593501) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:11PM (#6503472) Journal
    At first I was going to scream "holy shitballs! That rocks!" But then I decided to read a bit more on it.

    They say you just lend us the right to be your digital distributor: to get your music to legitimate music services like Apple iTunes, Listen.com, and more

    So...does anyone have any idea how many CDs CD Baby has actually put up on iTunes? They say they will be your digital distributor...but just how successful are they in that role?
  • It's nice to see this service starting to expand into indy music. I don't use the service but I support it because it's gives us all another choice. I think if they do a windows version then we'll really start to see an impact. You really can't lose with low prices and ease of use. Even if a person is anti-mac they can't deny that this service will be what the Ipod was to the old school mp3 players. I would also add that I am not a mac user but I can recognize quality no matter where it comes from.
  • by Capt_Troy (60831) <tfandango@yah[ ]com ['oo.' in gap]> on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:12PM (#6503481) Homepage Journal
    I've been saying for some time that the record industry NEEDS to basically innovate or die. Use technology to boost their sales rather than fighting in a losing battle. They never heeded the words of the great Capt_Troy...

    Nice to see someone doing this. Too bad for those involved with the RIAA that it's not one of them. I give iTunes a year in which it will grow and prosper. Then, the recording industry will finally give up and begin their own knockoffs (which will be nowhere near as good). One year...

    Troy
  • by American AC in Paris (230456) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:15PM (#6503527) Homepage
    BuyMusic.com, a recently-launched competitor to Apple iTunes Music Store, announced today that they would begin distributing independent artists' work, much like CDBaby's newly unveiled distribution plan. Through BuyMusic.com, independent artists would see up to 99.9% profit per sale(1), with one-time setup costs as low as $30(2). Artists would receive their checks in as little as one week(3) after BuyMusic.com receives payment for the sale. Artists wishing to leave the service may be able to do so as quickly as within twenty days.(4)

    (1) Typical profit per sale will range between -5% and 3% depending on marketing terms and market conditions
    (2) Setup costs of $30 available to Ultra Platinum Plus artists only. Typical setup costs between $80-200 per song.
    (3) Payment processing is facilitated by a third party contractor; allow 5-8 months lead time for most transactions.
    (4) Expedited 20-day cancellation requires rapid cancellation charge of $10,000. Expedited cancellation not available for top-selling titles. Standard requests for contract cancellation will be considered on a per-request basis.

  • of audio.

    Let's hope they do a better job of artistic managment then CP did.....

  • by treegnome (324068) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:16PM (#6503544)
    I'm a musician, and I've been waiting for something like this to come out. I just called CD Baby and they said that I couldn't JUST spend the $40 and sell digitally, I still had to have a CD printed up and ready to sell physically on their website... which I don't have $3,000 for...

    I'm still waiting for a totally digital distributor, since I think that will be the next big thing..
    • by clifyt (11768) <[moc.liamg] [ta] [rettamkinos]> on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:36PM (#6503857) Homepage
      A good friend of mine makes a little change through this company.

      He prints the liners with an inkjet printer and buys printable discs (about $0.30 as opposed to $0.10) and has a friend with a CD printer do them up for about $1 each...pretty much the cost of the ink. The cheapest CD Printer on the market is around $350.

      Past that, $3000 should get your album mastered and recorded and all that...quite a few popular indy rockers these days doing their entire recording on $5000 or less.

      If you can't afford to burn a few CDs and con a friend at a studio to print a few custom discs for you, ya shouldn't be waiting for anything like this because we aren't going to be buying your work anyways.
  • Fantastic! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by DrWhizBang (5333) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:19PM (#6503596) Homepage Journal
    I find it very odd that a computer company (Apple) could be the driver being such a fundamental civil rights change. (aside: If artists can start to be compensated for their work, what's to stop us IT workers and software developers?)

    The music industry is one area where the big corporation have been allowed to force people into contract that would violate labour laws if they were proposed in other sectors. We have been waiting with baited breath for technology to break down the barriers that have stopped artists from being freed, yet the technology companies themselves hove mostly worked with the RIAA to perpetuate this arrangement.

    Bravo, Apple. I do understand that you are only interested in dollars like every other corporation, but you have shown that you do value creativeity and freedom as well, just like you keep telling us!

    • > (aside: If artists can start to be compensated for their work, what's to stop us IT workers and software developers?)

      What? You work for free?
  • by Squidgee (565373) <squidgeeOO1@h[ ]ail.com ['otm' in gap]> on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:19PM (#6503602)
    What I want to see is an artist they got on the iTMS before I go jumping for joy at this.

    IF they get someone on there, then I can jump for joy; until then, it could very well be bogus. Only time will tell...

  • Not too shabby (Score:5, Informative)

    by Jon Abbott (723) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:20PM (#6503607) Homepage
    Given the $40 entry fee, the 91:9 profit ratio with CDBaby, the 40:60 profit ratio with Apple, and assuming that people only download singles for $0.99 each, it would only take 111 downloads of your band's songs to break-even. Not bad!!
    • Re:Not too shabby (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Graff (532189) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @07:25PM (#6506140)
      it would only take 111 downloads of your band's songs to break-even.

      I'm not sure about that, by my calculations it works out to 68 songs.

      99 cents per track

      Apple gets 34 and label gets 65 according to several articles I've read.

      65 cents * 91% = 59.15 cents per track to the artist

      $40 / $0.5915 per track = 67.6 tracks

      Round off to 68

      So it's even more amazing than you thought. As I pointed out earlier, if you have 12 tracks per album then after 6 albums you would see a profit. That's pretty damn good.
      • Re:Not too shabby (Score:4, Interesting)

        by Jon Abbott (723) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @11:13PM (#6507994) Homepage
        Apple gets 34 and label gets 65 according to several articles I've read.
        That's where our calculations differ -- I was assuming almost the opposite -- that Apple was getting 60%, while the label got 40%... I guess I remembered the ratio inversely.

        But anyway, yes, the whole idea is awesome. I might break out Fast Tracker II from years past and crank out some music again, mainly to have it available on the iTMS. :^)
  • by MagicMerlin (576324) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:23PM (#6503656)
    Most record deals with emerging artists ususally take around 70-90% of the profits from album sales (after artificially inflated production costs). TLC, one of the biggest acts of the early 90's sold over 10 million copies of their album 'waterfalls' and walked away with about 170k$ each (do the math).

    Basically, artists could sell about 1/10th (or less) of the records online as they normally would through normal channels and make more money!
  • CD Albums... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by frission (676318) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:32PM (#6503784) Homepage
    I don't know if anyone has posted this...but what i'd like to see is if I choose the option to buy the whole album, I should be able to download a CD image (bin/ccd/nrg/iso/something) of the entire CD (maybe including extras?). It'd be great for songs that seem to merge together (if you burn DAO, disc at once), instead of getting the 2 second gap from TAO (track at once) and messing up the song...of course if you wanted to buy one track at a time, it'd still be mp3/ogg/aac/whatever... :)
  • by MichaelCrawford (610140) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:38PM (#6503878) Homepage Journal
    Many unsigned musicians offer free downloads of their music as a way to attract more fans.

    I'm working on an article I hope to publish at Kuro5hin soon. You may find it helpful. In return, I would like your comments on how to improve it. I want to do the very best job I can so that it will be sure to get voted to the front page by the K5 moderators:

    If you're a musician who offers free music downloads, I will link to your website if you give my article a reciprocal link. Please read the instructions here [goingware.com].

    Send your comments to crawford@goingware.com [mailto]

    Thanks for your help.


  • This is the worst thing imaginable..!!!
  • It's actually $75 (Score:5, Informative)

    by mcc (14761) <amcclure@purdue.edu> on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @05:03PM (#6504251) Homepage
    If you read through their little presentation, it's actually $40 per album plus a one-time fee of $35 to set up a cdbaby account. That's still not horribly bad.

    My only worry with this is that as far as I can tell, CDBABY isn't *required* to do anything.. they have to attempt to get you on these services but if the services all reject you, you still have spent $40.

    Moreover, it *appears* from the contract [cdbaby.net] that if you want out-- like, in the unlikely event if iTunes Music Store doesn't accept you through cdbaby, but you later find a way you can get on iTMS not through CDBaby, but you are bound by CDBaby to go through them-- you can do so without penalty, but not until either three and a half years from the start of the agreement or until CDBaby wants to change the terms of your contract, whichever comes first.. that's much better than it could be, of course, the contract isn't limitless and you can get out freely after that block of time, but it decreases the ability to do this kind of thing just as a what-the-heck kind of thing.

    Here's the thing I can't figure out from the contract. If you sign up with them, do they have exclusive rights to ALL online distribution, or only online distribution through the services that CDBaby works with such as iTMS? In essence, if I signed up with them, would I still be able to distribute mp3s on my own website of the material signed over to them? The little slide-show seems to imply this would be allowed, but 8ai and 8aiii in the contract seem to say that CDBaby has been given an exclusive right to this as well.

    Anyway, definitely interesting. I'd like to see if there's any other way to get onto iTMS or other services first as a complete independent, but I will definitely keep these CDBaby people in mind..
  • by geekee (591277) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @05:12PM (#6504386)
    "Imagine being a touring indie band and be able to tell people to go to iTunes and buy your songs;"

    If you're a touring indie band, you probably already have a record label. Indie means not on a major label. It doesn't mean unsigned. This service is to get unsigned artists a representative to push your music in the digtal world.

    "it seems this could be a huge boon to musicians wanting to circumvent/boycott/avoid/destroy the RIAA."

    If you don't have a record label, you won't get any radio airplay. For your $40, CDBaby will listen to your music, take the best of what they get, and hope someone like Apple is willing to sell it online. Whether or not anyone previews it and buys it is anyone's guess.
  • Wait a second... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Tom7 (102298) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @06:03PM (#6505075) Homepage Journal
    What the hell does CD Baby "distribute?"

    These aren't physical CDs, they're just music files, so why is CD Baby taking a continual 9% cut of your music?

    Anyway, for most bands it's tough enough getting people to listen to your songs even if you put them online for free. So, this is probably just another way to coax money out of indie hopefuls.
  • by GI Jones (21552) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @06:50PM (#6505729) Homepage
    Sometimes I wonder about you all... when it comes to becoming a famous musician, it's not a matter of distribution, but creating a demand for distribution. There are tons of digital warehouses out there for indie artists.. just waiting to house their music for distribution, but unless people know (or want) to go there, there isn't much reason for having it housed anywhere digitally.

    Just ask an indie artist when the last time someone downloaded their free MP3s off of Kazzaa... even providing the content for free will not guarantee anyone will ever download it.

    What the labels get the big $$$ for is promotion, at least that is what they tell the artists. The labels have the connections... they can get you on the radio, opening for a popular band or a guest spot on Letterman etc. This is what makes the difference between selling 10,000 albums and 500,000 albums.

    There are a ton of companies that distribute indie artists' albums, but these companies do little or no promotions beyond a "featured artist" list on their website or a sampler CD with new music.

    The company that can find a way to connect with listeners and invade existing promotion channels while creating a new model that provides the artists with the bulk of the $$$ and provide direct digital distribution will change the industry... believe me, I have been cooking ideas related to this for years. I would love to see the industry turned on its ear.

    If you have an existing fan base, this might be a great way to get your music out there without the expense of pressing CDs... but it will be catch-as-catch-can unless you have some kind of promotion tied to it.

    But as far as I am concerned, much of what I hear is idle words... if you want to support indie artist, hit one of your local music venues and pay the $10 cover and you will discover that there are a ton of fantastic artists out there... nearly all of which will never make big $$$ playing music. The catch is that by going to a show, you may create a greater demand for physical or digital distribution of indie music. And if you are the type that doesn't actually have social interaction with others, spend some time on MP3.com listening to indie artists and buying their music.
  • Apple: Read This (Score:5, Interesting)

    by The-Perl-CD-Bookshel (631252) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @09:35PM (#6507283) Homepage Journal
    Why not take all of the bands that submit work that aren't chosen for iTunes and throw them up on something like indie.iTunes.com. You would get a wild indie following.

    Also, you could allow people who purchased an iPod to download one song for free off of each album on indie.iTunes.com. As it stands now, if you were going to fill a 30GB iPod the legit way, it would cost you about $7,500 (assuming that you only store music on your iPod). IPods would fly off of the shelves, as would some great music that needs a chance!

"I have more information in one place than anybody in the world." -- Jerry Pournelle, an absurd notion, apparently about the BIX BBS

Working...