Publishing Your Album and Spotify

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  • @ianuarius  Feb 2018

    Hey friends,

    How many of you have published your album on Spotify?
    - What service did you use?
    - How long have you been using it?
    - Are you happy with it (pros/cons)?

    Here's what we've found out so far
    Completely free:

    Cost based on royalties:
    - RecordUnion(?)
    - Routenote (slow?)

    - Distrokid
    - CD baby
    - Tunecore

  • @tomslatter  Feb 2018

    I have some stuff on Spotify. My label deals with the technical side now, but previously I've used Tunecore.

    I'm in two minds. To make any money you need the sort of listener numbers that to be frank are rather hard to get, at least with the kind of music I make. I think it makes more sense to focus on Bandcamp and be more 'indie' if building an audience is your goal.

  • @ianuarius  Feb 2018

    Thanks for the reply.

    Yeah, I get that, but I just want my stuff on Spotify because I want it on Spotify.

    I don't care if my stuff makes any money or not. It probably won't, no matter where I put it. So, it's just a matter of where I want my music to be available.

  • @standup  Feb 2018

    I used to get my EP on all the digital services. It's free. It was recommended by @w1n.

  • @soulbird Feb 2018

    i did mine via ditto, which also uploaded to amazon, i tunes, etc

  • @kraftec Feb 2018

    I use Distrokid. I've been using it for about a year now and it's pretty good. It's 20โ‚ฌ per year and you can upload unlimited albums/songs. For Spotify it takes usually around 3 days, but can be as quick as the next day. For other streaming services it can take a bit longer. Their customer support is apparently great and they're pretty up to date in terms of features.

  • @brrrse  Feb 2018

    I'm watching this thread. I am not interested in royalties or popularity. I just want to make my paper boats and set them afloat. I feel like there's so much money and process involved in putting music out there - I'm just a musical poet. Thanks for the suggestions so far, and please keep them coming. ๐Ÿ˜€

  • @tcelliott  Feb 2018 looks more interesting this time around (I checked them out back in December) for some reason. Maybe it's because I have actual music I'm ready to release?

    It does look like a bit of work to use an app instead of the computer, but I may try it out and see.... after all, it's free.

  • @ianuarius  Feb 2018

    @standup Man, looks incredibly good. ๐Ÿ˜ฎ

  • @stevenwesleyguiles  Feb 2018

    CD Baby has been my digital outlet for over 15 years.

  • @brrrse  Feb 2018

    @tcelliott let me know how that goes for you, and your process with that please. thanks.

  • @bithprod Feb 2018

    I used DistroKid as well. The album was released within 3-4 days! I paid $80 or something, as I want to release several singles under different band names this year.

    And for shameless self-promotion purposes, here's the link to our "Norwegian americana" album. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • @chipwithrow  Feb 2018

    CD Baby for me, too. And I just got an email from them that I have made something like 18 bucks - that's over months if not years.
    And through CD Baby, I get to Spotify - I like seeing me as an artist alongside all my favorites! It's also cool to search Apple Music on my phone and see that I'm there, too.
    It's my kid/family folk music, two albums from 2007 and 2009. I got really into those two - cover art, professionally mastered, friends playing on it - in a way I'll probably never do again.

  • @sailingmagpie  Feb 2018

    @ianuarius @tcelliott I used for the album I released at the start of December. It was very straight forward. It lets you upload from your online storage (Dropbox, I think) and you can choose which services you add it to from a tick list and it includes pretty much all of the main ones. The stats are pretty basic and I've not had any payments yet, as I've not been on there long enough but overall I'm pretty happy with it.

  • @bradbrubaker  Feb 2018

    Great thread. Eager to hear more and to check out

  • @atitlan Feb 2018

    Routenote is probably best for vanity publishing as they take a percentage of the nothing you'll make on streaming services and put it up for free. For someone who is actually likely to get streamed a worthwhile amount, they also offer a paid-for service.

  • @torniojaws Feb 2018

    I've had my albums in Spotify since November 2010 through Record Union. No problems and basically they are there for free ๐Ÿ˜€ Because the yearly subscription cost is generally accumulated each year in royalties. So it's not a way to make money, but at least you don't need to "pay" for it ๐Ÿ˜€

    Oh and the price includes other services than Spotify too: Amazon MP3, iTunes, Deezer, Google Music, Pandora, etc.

  • @mattblick Feb 2018

    CD baby. Very good. Also they have a one time fee for each album or ep so once you upload it you're good forever. They cover iTunes Spotify amazon and everything else you could think of all in the package. And you can opt out of any individual platform when you like too for when you want to pull a Taylor Swift...

  • @radioovermoscow Feb 2018

    Distrokid, no question at all. It's days, sometimes weeks faster than the others (in my experience), and it's miles and away cheaper.

    Occasionally I check out what the others are promising, and it's lame (in theory... and in practise, I've never had an issue with Distrokid too.)

  • @tallmarkmusic  Feb 2018

    Cautiously reading the legal page of It seems too good to be true, no?

  • @ianuarius  Feb 2018


    If anyone's got more info about I'd be very interested to hear

  • @alamous Feb 2018

    I've released all the band stuff to Spotify, Deezer, Itunes, Amazon, Google play and all the other via RecordUnion which is a swedish company. Probly not the cheapest, but they've been alright so far.

  • @emkeev  Feb 2018

    Put in another vote for cdbaby! I actually recently was speaking with a new fan and they checked apple music and there I was! Already loaded up into a subscription service I didn't even know I should be part of. Haha

  • @konemake  Feb 2018

    I've used also RecordUnion. No problems, though like @alamous said, probably not the cheapest. They have different options there and sometimes some sort of campaigns where you might get deals a bit cheaper.

  • @leah0k  Feb 2018

    I have been curious about this as well. I am so behind in the technological times itโ€™s not even funny... It needs to be easy for me to do it. How user friendly is CDBaby? Lots of you seem to be fond of that service.

  • @kevinmason  Feb 2018

    I think there are a lot of possible ways to do this that are good. I'm a Distrokid user and a satisfied one. Haven't had any issues yet.

  • @tomslatter  Feb 2018

    As well as the technical way to do it, it would be intersting to hear your motivations. Several people have said they don't expect or care about seeing a return. What are the other motivations?

    E.g. is having music up on Spotify a way to declare the project 'finished', in the same way as 10 years ago you might want a CD.

    Or is it something else?

  • @kevinmason  Feb 2018

    @tomslatter, for me it's just a way to make the music accessible to more people. I finished a project up this past summer that I put on a CD, SoundCloud, Bandcamp, and then onto Spotify using Distrokid.

    I have friends who don't stream music, so a CD is one of the only options. I've got some friends who listen to music on SC or BC, but for a lot of people Spotify is how they listen to most of their music. They appreciate that they can stream it without downloading a new app or familiarizing themselves with a new website.

  • @bokonon Feb 2018

    We went with for our last album. They have been no-nonsense and although we've only made ยฃ45 in 18 months (which just about covers the one-off fee to distribute it) that reflects badly on us, not them.

    We debated for a while about whether to distribute this way or just stick to bandcamp. I figured having it on Spotify etc. would remove a barrier for less-savvy potential listeners. Jury's out on that one. It's possible it just stopped people buying it?

  • @brrrse  Feb 2018

    @tomslatter My motivation is in my first FAWM song this year - I'm making paper boats - if I put my song out there loud enough - the person who wants to hear them will - My job is to tell the stories - and I have to do that any way I can. It's not fame - or notariety. It's messages in bottles.

  • @wistah  Feb 2018

    I use CD Baby. I lose money on it though, so it ends up feeling more like a vanity project.. I don't have enough listeners to justify the iTunes / Spotify costs. I make money with Bandcamp though. That's better for me as a small time act.

  • @kevinmason  Feb 2018

    @brrrse I like the way you put that. A wide variety of platforms allows the stories we share to reach the most ears, making them more likely to reach the ears that WANT to hear them.

    I like the imagery of paper boats. I'll sit with that concept for a bit.

  • @bithprod Feb 2018

    DistroKid: I uploaded my songs on Thursday night, and they were on Spotify on Wednesday morning (as per my instructed release date). Routenote: I uploaded one song mid-November, and it's still "pending". So, even though Routenote offers a free service, I'd never recommend it.

    Yeah, messages in bottles. Most of them sink. How to reach your target audience? I don't know. There's just too much music in the world, I guess.

  • @brrrse  Feb 2018

    @bithprod Once I set them afloat, I cannot control where they go - if they sink or float...I just know I did my job and set them free ๐Ÿ˜€ It's how I have to look at it - as I cannot compete with bigger and more well funded artists. So I make paper boats.

  • @radioovermoscow Feb 2018

    Paper boats float too, as It taught us.

  • @ajna1960  Feb 2018

    I'm a cdbaby gal too ๐Ÿ˜€

  • @spingo  Feb 2018

    Never heard of/definitely interested in

    I've made a couple of bucks on Bandcamp, but only really want to get the stuff more conveniently accessible, and "paper boats" is lovely. Send them out into the world!

  • @tcelliott  Feb 2018

    @tomslatter - My daughters listen to spotify and itunes music. One asked for the CD. The other told me in no uncertain terms she would never play a cd again as it's "too old." So... At least they showed interest in my "boring" music for a change.

  • @bithprod Feb 2018

    You and me both, @brrrse. You and me both.

    I guess it's a matter of finding that 0.1% who really love your songs and nurture the relationship. But networking isn't easy when all you do is write the songs, not perform them.

  • @ianuarius  Mar 16

    Ok, so I put the album on Spotify through and with 14 tracks and the (very good) mobile user interface, the process took me about half an hour.

    I'm very happy with the results. It looks and sounds the way it should.

    When I submitted the tracks, they suggested releasing it 14 days after that, which was fine by me. There were no complications and they approved the release in about 7 days and now here we are.

  • @oddbod  Mar 16

    I just put out an album using Distrokid, which at $20 per annum seems inexpensive (BTW, don't quite get your "expensive" comment in the OP). It was up on Spotify, Apple Music, iTunes, Amazon etc, in about 3 days.
    I'm curious about though seeing as it's free. Is your album just published on Spotify or elsewhere too? How long is/was the lag between upload and publishing?

  • @ianuarius  Mar 16

    @oddbod It's expensive compared to free. If I wanted my album to be up for 50 years, that's $1000. Compared to free, that's a lot of money.

    I don't know what the options for the release schedule are with Like I just explained, they suggested 14 days and that was fine by me. I'm not in a hurry. They did what they promised.

    They said they'd put it in Spotify, Apple Music, iTunes, Amazon, deezer, tidal, youtube, google music, shazam, napster, etc. as well, but I don't use any of the other ones, so who knows.

    EDIT: I just looked it up, it's also on Deezer:

    Google Music

    Amazon Music

  • @adforperu  Mar 16

    AWAL take a cut of your profits, but free to get your stuff up on various sites

  • @quork  Mar 16

    You already have a review on Amazon. Cool. Great artwork, by the way. Very educational thread. Thanks for sharing your experiences, everyone.

  • @ianuarius  Mar 16

    @quork Yeah, FAWM is great because great friends give great reviews. ๐Ÿ˜€

  • @davidhendricks Mar 17

    I use Routenote, they take a 15% cut, but there's no up front fee, or annual fee. I don't find them to be particularly slow, and they distribute to a lot of different services besides Spotify.

  • @jcooper  Mar 17

    Anybody thinking about earning crypto currency? If you have a bit of a social following here is a good way to immediately get your original music out there and immediately start earning money (I havenโ€™t tried converting my music coins into hard cash so that I can buy a glass of wine yet๐Ÿท). Note also it is still in beta so may have some problems.

    You get paid in music coins for each person who listens to even a bit of your song. For verified artists it is free for anybody to listen. My referral link is here

    The direct link (if you donโ€™t want to use my referral link) is

    Let me know if you join so I can support you on the platform.

  • @julesbf Mar 17

    I use distrokid for the rock band releases, cheap and reliable, might try out amuse though fro some other projects as distrokid is more expensive when releasing under various acts., great thread @ianuarius

  • @stevenwesleyguiles  Mar 18

    I like CDbaby because it's a one time fee as opposed to a yearly, so I pay once and my album is up forever on the various services (all the streaming and download sites).

    I've heard about and am intrigued. I didn't like distrokids yearly that $20 for putting up as many albums as you want or $20 per album per year?! If so, I'd switch to CDbaby.

    I am biased and I'm a longtime cdbaby user, so, there's that.

  • @billwhite51 Mar 18

    Bandcamp. Ive uploaded 45 albums in the last six month and have made nearly $1,000.

  • @johnstaples  Mar 18

    @billwhite51 do you have a substantial fanbase making repeat purchases? Do you think that is sustainable income or more of a one-shot? I've got so many songs that are decent enough to be released and I don't wanna buy CDBaby albums for them all.

  • @djohnson Mar 18

    @stevenwesleyguiles That's 20$ for putting up as many as you like per year

  • @billwhite51 Mar 18

    @johnstaples i wouldnt call it a substantial fanbase, but it is a loyal one, making repeat purchases and paying much more for the albums than i would dare ask. i price them at $1 or whatever you want to pay. i dont know how soon the people now buying the albums will become bored with me, or if the fanbase will continue to grow. i am always looking for new ways amd places to promote the music, but visibility is difficult to achieve in ths post- music industry climate where each individual is trying to run their own business.

  • @musicsongwriter Mar 18

    My music is on Soundclick and on Bandcamp. I like both sites but although I had very modest amount of purchases on either my preference is Bandcamp.

  • @silvermachine  Mar 19

    I don't see the point of putting my album on any of these places unless I had a following of people who wanted it. As I don't, the total lack of interest I would be faced with would be detrimental, even damaging.
    I got to say I believe in my music, but hey I'm a sensitive artist and why set myself up pointlessly for a rejection, that doesn't reflect the worth of my stuff at all.
    But then you go to Bandcamp and watch this pitiless procession of albums peeps are buying, crossing the screen and think WTF, is that real, who'd want that shit, it's so obscure and unappealing.
    And you know the cult audience you need are there, but just buying all this crap instead, because they aint heard your music yet.
    And you bang on the screen to get their attention but the bastards aren't listening. Typical.

  • @oldlostjohn  Mar 25

    CDBaby. Since I use their affiliate HostBaby as my website service I get a free album release every third months. The website service does cost a bit though, but it's easy to to deal with for someone who is not into website design and naturally based on templates made specifically for music artists.

  • @tcelliott  Mar 25

    The hostbaby site is holding a sale right now... MegaMarch. 111 off... so for 149/month you get unlimited releases* and hosting for a year. Doesn't sound like a terrible deal.

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