Friday, June 09, 2006

Bands Score With IndieStore

I remember the day when I used to shake my head with despair when ever I heard someone say: "I remember the day!"

And yet here am I, looking back to the time when I was in a rock band, thinking that musicians nowadays never had it so good. MySpace, flickr, YouTube and now indiestore: a fantastic selection of tools.

Let me take you back to the late 1980’s. London was booming, yuppies were thriving and the east of the City of London was under massive re-development. If you could afford it you were buying property in the docklands if you couldn’t you were drinking with us.

Well, I exaggerate a little. It seemed like that. The band was based in Bethnal Green road at a pub called the Stick of Rock, close to the junction with Brick Lane.

From the front door you could see cranes and concrete going up around Liverpool Street station. The money was over there.

We played some great gigs at The Stick. Hot, sweaty and always fun. We had a mixture of rockers, skinheads and east enders willing us on and we had a pocket full of happy rock songs which people could dance and sing along to.

Naturally we decided to put some of our music onto vinyl. CD’s were just coming out but it seemed a pretty stupid idea for us to make one as no one we knew actually owned a CD player.

So we plumped for 2000 12 inch records. Why on earth 12 inch? Well, to help pay for it we had sold advertising squares on the back sleeve. Also it was said that it gave the songs more oomph.

I’ll cut this story short because those days were great fun and to get to the point would take ages but 2000 12 inch records is a weight and a half. You get 25 discs in a box and so that’s 80 boxes and strong young rockers can only carry two packs at a time. It took ages to load and then unload.

Nowadays? Ha! Bands never had it so good. You’ve got MySpace to help your fans connect and listen to your tracks, flickr to share photos, YouTube to post your videos and now IndieStore - somewhere to actually sell your music.

You can upload your songs for free and people can download them for 79p. You get 70% of the money.

To get onto iTunes you have to have someone distribute your music, here you are on in moments. You can for songs available for sale, at no cost to the band, within minutes.

Brilliant. You can even open a pro account and if your sales go massive you will enter the actually charts. No shops, no distribution just one pure connection between you and your fans.

This is a fantastic site for new acts that are prepared to gig and publicise their material.

Look at the Trophy Boyz and their World Cup song "Name on the Cup". They are number 3 in the Indiestore charts. With the right momentum a band can start selling.

But if you are just going to add your music and hope then nothing will happen.

If you have time to visit just click on the random band link and you’ll see hundreds of acts waiting for people to download their music and good luck to them.

Hard work, hard gig is and many miles in the back of a van will get you sales. It is how we did it. We sold 1600 copies at gigs and you still see one or two for sale on ebay. But if we had had an indiestore page...

1 comment:

Michael said...

Good comments all! It's not easy to actually sell music online. But at least we have access to the tools that let us do so, which was not the case all those years ago.