New way to buy music: Bandcamp
I'm pretty excited about Bandcamp , and here's why:
1. We get paid directly (now with creditcards too!)
Our music is available on iTunes and a bajillion other download sites thanks to digital distribution from CDBaby. However, if you buy a track/album on iTunes, here's what happens to your money: Apple gets a cut, CDBaby gets a cut, and we get the rest. If you buy an mp3 on CDbaby directly, CDBaby takes a pretty big cut (now 25%). Then we wait, oftentimes months, to get paid.
Bandcamp allows fans to buy the music directly from us with a creditcard or Paypal account. Paypal, she does take a cut, but it's far smaller than iTunes+CDbaby.
PLUS, if you live somewhere where there's no iTunes store yet (Paraguay, perhaps?) you can still buy music.
"This is great for you guys, but what's in it for me?" you ask? Read on.
2. Bandcamp allows us to allow you to name your own price*
credit cards! name your price! sweet!
*We can set a minimum price for each album/track, which is great, because now we can sell our tracks for less than anyone else (insert maniacal laughter here), BUT, if you're feeling extra generous (or maybe owe us money), you can pay whatever you'd like. $50 for an album? Feel free. We'll send you something extra for sure.
We may, on occassion, even make a track totally free every once in awhile. A musical easter egg, if you will.
3. You can download higher quality tracks than almost anywhere else
Mp3? Meh. AAC? ok...better. How about 3 different lossless formats? For the same price? Now we're talking. And now we're audio nerds.
in digital audio, bigger is better
4. Bandcamp includes all the metadata
Translation: album name, artist, cover art etc appear on your iPod/iTunes app just like regular old iTunes downloads.
Ok, this isn't a big deal. I have lots of songs by Unkown Artist. I even have their album 'Unknown Album'! Track 05 is my fav, though my nephew likes Track 11_2a.mp3 best.
not a helpful library...
5. Bandcamp will allow us to instantly release a song or an album
In the old model, CDBaby has to get a physical CD, rip it, send it out to all the digital stores (who then sit on it for weeks because we're a small fish) before it trickles out into the world. Plus, currently, the CDBaby rip-and-ship time is pretty outrageous, since they broke their website trying to upgrade it. Oops.
Now, we can go directly from studio to store. A live album, 2 days after the concert anyone?
6. Download codes
Download codes allow us to either give an album/song download away for free, or to sell downloads at concerts. Selling downloads at concerts might seem like an odd idea, but here's why I like it: the code comes on a tiny Moo Mini Card, which is smaller than a regular business card. Because the manufacturing costs for these cards are lower than manufacturing costs for a CD, we can sell them for less.You're probably going to rip the Cd into your computer anyway...why not skip a step?
You go home, enter the url on the back of the card, enter the code on the back of the card, choose your format (see #3 above) and viola, download begins. Of course, you don't get the artwork with the download (except the album cover, just like an iTunes download) but how many downloaded albums come with artwork nowadays? That said, we may make the full album art for our next album available as a free .pdf on our site (digital booklet).