As DIY musicians, it’s important you and I keep up with what’s going on in the industry.
So as we welcome the new year, here are three important things happening in the music industry in 2018.
iTunes Is Removing Digital Music Downloads
As of 2016, iTunes started phasing out digital music downloads. And the plan is to finalize the whole process by 2019.
According to Digital Music News, there will be a “complete termination by 2019, shortly after the 2018 Christmas season.” And this is happening “as music downloads continue to collapse.”
If you didn’t know by now, you should — streaming is the new way of doing things. So if you’ve released music, you should get it to places like Spotify, Tidal, Pandora, and Amazon.
You can use this guide to get you started: How To Sell Your Music Online (A Guide For Beginners).
Things Will Get Better For Songwriters
In a landmark deal, the songwriting industry and music streaming companies partnered to cut a deal with the federal government, reports The Tennessean.
Without getting too much into the legal jargon, here’s what the new deal means: streaming companies will now be able to easily license songs, while songwriters and publishers should see an increase in their own digital rates.
Here’s a little more detail on what the deal will lead to:
- “Songwriters and publishers could be identified more accurately and paid more promptly,” thanks to a soon-to-be mechanical digital rights organization run by music publishers and funded by streaming companies
- Boosted royalty rates for songwriters, thanks to rate courts being able to look at sound recording royalty rates as a factor when they set rates for songwriters and publishers
- More boosted royalty rates for songwriters, thanks to us being able to present as evidence for more royalties the sync licensing deals (our music in TV/film) we get.
- ASCAP and BMI can take their rate-setting disputes to any of the federal judges for the Southern District of New York, instead of being assigned to one federal judge
The DIY Music Train Will Keep Chugging — Hop On
Now is one of the best times to be a DIY musician.
Anyone can record music in their bedroom and make it sound professional (check out the Audio Recording category for more on that). It’s so easy and affordable to distribute your music worldwide.
There are plenty of ways to make money as a musician, sometimes without even leaving home. And tools for musicians abound, like CD Baby, Patreon, and LANDR.
If you’ve been on the fence about pursuing music as your passion, as your source of income, now is the best time to jump off that fence on the right side.