Magazine article Acoustic Guitar

FAQ

Magazine article Acoustic Guitar

FAQ

Article excerpt

As an unsigned artist, can I sell individual tracks on iTunes?

Yes, you can-although not directly unless you're on an iTunes-signed label. Many unsigned musicians have tracks on iTunes as a byproduct of selling physical CDs through CD Baby (www.cdbaby.com) or another online store/distributor. But nowadays it is also possible to skip the shiny discs and just sell digital downloads at the major Web stores.

One compelling option for digital distribution is TuneCore (www.tunecore.com). For a flat fee (currently, one-time charges of $0.99 per track and $0.99 per store per album, and an annual storage and maintenance fee of $19.98 per album), TuneCore will distribute your songs to the iTunes, eMusic, Rhapsody, Sony Connect, MusicNet, and Napster stores. All proceeds from sales (for instance, $0.70/song on iTunes), and all the rights, are yours. An album can consist of however many songs you like, up to 74 minutes total. You can sell covers too, as long as you obtain the appropriate DPD (digital phonorecord delivery) license through the Harry Fox Agency's Songfile (www.harryfox.com) or directly from the song's publisher.

In addition, there are many options for setting up your own download store. Check out, for instance, Snocap (www.snocap.com; sign up through MySpace Music and you can automatically embed a download store on MySpace as well as anywhere else on the Web), E-junkie (www.e-junkie.com), and the PAN Network (www.onesource.pan.com).

Take your time comparing the services these companies offer. And if you want to sign up with more than one company, make extra sure the deals don't conflict-for instance, you don't want to wind up with multiple distributors supplying the same store.

-JEFFREY PEPPER RODGERS

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