Some people ask me why I don’t release music like rabbits duplicate themselves, because I’d be such a great producer and such… I don’t want to keep you in the dark why I’m VERY selective with what I release, and how.
I recently posted a link to a very interesting article. Well, some folks are click-lazy, so here something to just read away:
“FINALLY, THE TRACK GOES LIVE. Your digital distributor sends you daily “sales trend reports” which feature a graph that draws itself in Firefox, these bloody red arrows shooting upward. It’s like lightning in reverse. It seems only a matter of time until they’ll shoot all the way to the moon.
Let’s say you sell 400 units. Most people who run digital labels on the underground side are shaking their heads right now (and not because the number seems too low). But let’s say you sell 400 tracks.
The starting price per track is variable depending on the website and how many copies are bought during the Beatport exclusive sales period, but $2 seems like a good working estimate, for $800 in total revenue. iTunes offers a larger percentage to artists than most dance music boutique stores, but usually sells fewer copies, so let’s say your split with the download shops averages out to you surrendering 45% to them.
How broke are you?
Total Revenue: $800
Distribution Fee:-$30 (1st year only)
Artwork (Darryl’s Weed):-$35
At this point, your track has made $125 for you versus $675 for the supposedly “dead” music industry, including:
$360 for the download shops
$105 for the digital distributor ($30 for distributing the track, $75 for collecting your publishing)
$75 for a guy sitting on a sofa in his Tighty Whities with a laptop spamming DJs and message boards to generate the almighty “buzz”
and $35 for your roommate Darryl’s weed.
The publishing fee is a one time charge and doesn’t have to be paid again, but everything else here will be renewed every time you release a new record. If Darryl eventually moves in with his mom and her new boyfriend or you decide to pay for musicians, mastering or legit licenses for all the uncleared samples you used, your cut will diminish further.
If you spent 2 hours a day for 10 days making this EP, and 1 hour a day for 3 weeks doing all this business nonsense, you have raked in approximately $3 per hour, which is slightly less than the government mandated minimum wage for a domestic servant in Barbados.
But hey, there are always gigs, right?
Welcome to the dance music industry, circa 2014. Some of your friends are already this broke.”