- Apr 16, 2018
Back in the day, if you were a musician and wanted your music to be heard, you had to go to a record label. Record labels had the means to distribute and promote your work, but that also meant they kept a lion’s share of the profit, and sometimes even ownership of your compositions.
Fortunately, record labels are no longer the only way for a musician to get heard. The internet changed how we distribute and listen to music, and it’s not uncommon to find some cool unsigned artists making waves on streaming services like Spotify or SoundCloud.
Traditional record labels still have their place in today’s music industry, but digital sales are increasing. A 2012 study by the IFPI (International Federation of the Phonographic Industry) noted that 34% of the industry’s total revenue from digital sales. And that was in 2012; imagine how much ground streaming has gained since.
Now, more than ever, you have a legit shot at building a career outside the record label model. I’d recommend you start your musical journey with TuneCore (Link: https://www.tunecore.com). Read on to learn why I think they’re awesome!
What is TuneCore?
TuneCore (Link: https://www.tunecore.com) isn’t a record label; it’s a digital music aggregator. What this means is, you upload your music to TuneCore, then the site distributes your digital music stores and streaming services, including Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon Music, and Google Play Music. Dealing with those platforms personally can get wearisome, so it’s cool to have a service like TuneCore that does it all for you.
The site is legit, too. I know a lot of musicians are wary about getting screwed-over, but TuneCore is one of the good guys. TuneCore isn’t just for underground artists, too. Some pretty big names like Nine Inch Nails have used TuneCore. Trent Reznor, frontman and sole permanent member of Nine Inch Nails, has always been at the forefront of digital distribution. So it’s cool to that TuneCore has his stamp of approval.
You’ll get charged a flat fee of $9.99 per year for singles, or $29.99 for the first year for albums (which will increase to $29.99 for each succeeding year). It’s a pretty fair price for the service they offer. But here’s the awesome part: you get to keep 100% of your sales. TuneCore doesn’t make a dime more than the flat fee they charge you. And you even get to keep your music rights. You no longer have to give up bulk of your earnings to record labels!
Promoting Your Album
Of course, all that freedom means you’ll have to do a lot of things that record labels usually cover, like recording and promotion, yourself.
Fortunately, TuneCore has a suite of services to help you every step of the way. It narrowed down the process to three steps:
1. Prepare Your Music
TuneCore can help you with licensing and mastering, which are things you need to figure out before you even release your music.
2. Get Ready to Sell Your Music
Once your music is ready TuneCore will distribute it to popular streaming services and digital stores. It can even help you prepare physical copies of your work and design your website.
3. Promote Your Music
Once everything is in place, TuneCore has tools to help you promote your music and connect with new listeners.
The Verdict: Legit or Scam?
TuneCore is absolutely legit!
Times, as Bob Dylan put it, are a-changin’. Artists now have unprecedented control over how their works are distributed and monetized. TuneCore is one of the sites leading this digital revolution. If you’re a musician, give TuneCore a shot.
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This review is based on my own experiences using TuneCore to distribute music. Now it’s your turn to share. Are you an independent musician? Have you used Tunecore or any other digital distribution methods?
Let’s hear your stories!