CD Baby yesterday launched CD Baby Free - a Bandcamp-like direct to fan music download sales tool that opens the company's popular indie music store to all artists - even if they don't use CD Baby for digital distribution. CD Baby retains 15% of sales with no upfront fees. CD Baby distributed artists are charged 9%.
Direct to fan sales allow the artist to keep a larger portion of each sale. Apple takes 40% of a 99 cent iTunes download and percentage based distributors take another 10-15% or more. That puts just 50 cents or less in the artist pocket from an iTunes track sale vs. 84 cents or more for a direct to fan sale facilitated by CB Baby or Bandcamp.
Previously, artists that used Tunecore or another distributor to deliver their music to iTunes and others were frozen out of the CD Baby indie music eco-system. With 1.5 million unique monthly customers, the CD Baby store has a dedicated audience of independent music fans.
Free Player & Sales Widget
With the launch of CD Baby Free comes a new CD Baby Player. With a click-through to purchase from CD Baby, the customizable widget combines streaming with e-commerce on the artist's own or any site, including those of fans and bloggers. All versions of the player are in HTML 5, and designed to function with all mobiles devices.
About CD Baby
Established in 1998, CD Baby is home to more than 350,000 artists. Some, like Macklemore and Bon Iver, began their careers with the company, and their catalog titles remain there. Others, such as Willis Earl Beal and Greg Brown, have left the old label system to take charge of their own careers with the help of CD Baby.