Where does Beatrising explain their fees? They seem similar to DistroKid, but it’s hard to make a comparison because I have no idea what Beatrising charges.
In any event, distribution is near meaningless without focused promotion. If no one (who might care) knows your music exists, with some motivation to give a listen, then you’re just one of a million people pushing content.
Totally true in today’s market place, but now we are talking about being a well shelved commodity so that sales happen in larger numbers much like soap or toothpaste. The masses are not really known for their taste or privileged education levels so it boils down to mostly whether they can become good customers or not. Unlike in olden times when musicians, troubadours and minstrels used to travel from place to place playing in weddings and local events and gain some amount of local patronage and reputation by repeated performances and some teaching engagement, such patronage have largely vanished along with every kind of monarchy or aristocracy. Chopin was famous for being very a snobby with his music and always maintained that such music is not meant to performed in front of the plebs. Bach and Beethoven struggled with poverty for their entire lives, Mozart being possibly the most enterprising freelancer working for many clients and composing and selling as many as he could, Handel was the only one who genuinely made well with his money mostly because of his well paved connections and Thier sanctioned works, but these guys were gifted and still. No semblance of a marketing team or streaming music existed even then and now even with technology the market is still largely the same.
Also genres like classical and jazz while being their own critical scenes with solid academic presence unlike pop or electronic or rock, these elitist genres don’t actually sell well at all and in fact record labels depend on catalogue and those once in while top 10 selling pop or rock albums to account for loss of sales in those art critical genres…you know why, mostly because the populace don’t listen to classical or jazz in large proportions. So in terms of getting their money, it does not work regardless of how many good looking magazines or expensive concerts you play becos the bulk of the struggling masses just don’t have the taste, time, education and cash to contribute in these scenes. Thus it’s most rock and pop and now the technological pop or electronic music that works well. For every Bjork and Rolling Stone that sells a billion records , there are hundreds of John Coltrane Vinyls and Catherine Bott CDs gathering dust. And it’s not like every school or grocery shop knows who these top performers are either…so it’s a moot argument of marketing even helps, becos if so then why does not the media and music labels promote serious art music with the same fervour as some ‘dance music festival’ or ‘trance party’ or some ‘learn to make drum loops video course’ and not deep music theory or other such stuff…becos people don’t get most of it.
It’s actually way more complicated than that, infact the middle class music business supporters like music shops, event stages, radio stations and the whole machinery is suffering due to insufficient revenues. Also because everyone wants a pie from the product created by the origin al source : musicians. You always have new ways to lose money than make money. But if that is so, then why do so many students take up academic music and the professions thereof, becos the years of rigour and the end goal of musical mastery transcends any sort of dependence on the admiration of the masses with their mostly pedestrian tastes, this is historical and commercially valid btw…just look at record sales.
Charles Dickens (if I got it right) was the one who said, ‘I don’t want to be admired, I want to be understood’.
A famous conductor once made a quip to his colleague (who was new I suppose): ‘Just make sure you start and end in perfect time with the orchestra, the audience won’t understand any of the rest of it’.
Now the first one is the essence of why art and artists exist, which is to communicate with each other and celebrate his creations becos he himself is a created being. The second one is downright condescending on the mass audience.
So @neorugami, my question is do you want or be admired or understood. Ideally ‘understood’ should come first and ‘admiration’ from understanding people always pays both the artist and the art in the long run. It’s also entirely possible to be very admired and that admiration translates into money, that is after you manager or label takes their share and the distributor theirs. There are many more such people waiting in line to be paid from your efforts. Becos of commerce reasons and the system trap ANY one who pays you money is a potential audience, but personally speaking I am absolutely willing to play in front an audience who cannot pay but have a background in truly understanding the style of music we are both engaged in as a transaction. The good part is no one is forcing anyone to be a commodity just as no one is forcing anyone to pursue a particular style of music. So even as a musician it’s totally your own decision if you want to make money in more sellable genres or chase admiration or have the persistence to craft your own voice without paying heed to the audience as they come and go, placing whatever they can on your bowl on the floor, if that is what is being done, or not. So valuing your art based on what some business cabal has done dismally btw with the commodification and debasing of art just to make it palatable to pedestrian tastes and sell more is tantamount to working in a junk food industry and talking about ‘healthy eating.’.
My experience is that as long one can actually play music (as in an instrument or voice) one will always have an audience.
Check out some vids by Rick Beato on ‘no one listens to jazz’, and ‘rock is dead’, and also read one of the many such good books: ‘Dirty Little Secrets of the recording industry’.
So negating the average audience does work out in some sense otherwise music would never have existed today since such people don’t make much anyways, mostly consume. The ‘time will tell what art is art’ is also a little contrived in my opinion…the great library of Alexandria, Egypt was burnt down by invaders, Alamut and its thousand libraries maintained by the assassin clan were burned to the ground by Mongolians, Tibet’s legacy ‘Light of the world’ and ancient scrolls and older temples were routed by Mongolians and even today the remaining scrolls are being quarried in India with a community movement and a government undertaking to preserve them or else right before our noses they will also get destroyed. Countless composers and minstrels could never record their voices becos technology was unavailable. Sheet music was invented only recently in Europe and that too such repositories only were encouraged and undertaken by churches and monks and nuns becos as usual most of the available populace were busy tilling the fields and killing pigs for tomorrow’s meat market. We know nothing or what Roman music actually sound like except by empirical analyis and conjecture. Some of the best artists never got both or either the admiration and understanding or the people around them in their times till long after their works were suiting to the tastes or commerce trend benefits of the times in future(like the tulip craze in Amsterdam) …so judging by the ‘time argument’…it has never been kind to anyone and with respect to art has been a very tough warden indeed. It supposedly lets things get preserved like a fossil but still does it’s very best to mummify everything. And of course it kills the art makers without fail. So much has been lost in time that it’s foolish to say that what survives is the best necessarily, not really to me, more like they were the luckiest of the bunch!
Same with our time too, you wanna be a sponsored body builder and make some advertising cash or you actually have a ripped physique that makes you plus100 in everything you do, it’s your choice. But to me, separating artistic values and business values is a very good thing. Being ‘cavalier with your finances’ is not, hence personal finance knowledge, investment knowledge, and knowing how to get multiple income streams is more useful than looking to find some sort of half arsed admission process to your client list playlist. But now that includes selling your stuff to as many people as possible, given that we can all paste our faces anywhere, who do you think the ‘masses’ listen to anyways? Thought so…
Distribution fees is possibly nil. Because it’s a service they get their share from I suppose. Also it’s a small company and that is why I wanted to investigated their stuff. Direct payments always sound good though, less middle men and someone to manage your mechanical rights.
Personally though, taking cues form actual musicians throughout time, may sound rude but I honestly don’t care about the average audience at all, at face value definitely not, becos I have a good idea of what passes for playlists. But an intimate setting with a few folks who ‘get it’ and can jam in or dig what’s going on is more important to me than the other way around. That is the audience I value. Hence I am pursuing a genre ‘no one listens to’ or ‘historically never sold well’ or ‘whitelabel underground alternative urban’. Makes me very happy indeed.
I wear expensive branded stuff and get around very well without confusing ‘music money’ with any of the 5 different investment portfolios I have…
Some financial nuggets, saving is a misnomer; money can only be multiplied; investments are the way to go; liquidable assets are ok too.
Do that much and financial independence comes accordingly, what you with the extra cash is totally upto you. You can make more money with money sitting in your bank account that any sales that you can think of, becos end of the day it’s just a numbers game.
At the very least don’t sacrifice your art just to make some pennies…saddest shit of all.