Retail & Vinyl

TuneCore CEO Jeff Price & Co-Founder Peter Wells Exit

Jeffprice1TuneCore has pushed out both CEO Jeff Price and fellow co-founder Peter Wells from the company, first revealed publicly by an open letter sent out by Price himself. Details remain scarce, but it appears to stem from conflicts between the two and TuneCore’s Board of Directors. The open letter from Price (below) suggests this was not the way that he wanted things to go down and that he seeks to continue his mission of serving artists elsewhere. Price also suggests that something new is on the horizon for both he and Wells, mentioning that they "look forward to continuing to change the industry on a global scale" in a future announcement.  


We will continue to update you on this story as it develops, but in the meantime, here is Jeff Price’s open letter:

An open letter from TuneCore Founder Jeff Price

August 15th, 2012

Peter Wells, Gary Burke and I launched TuneCore on January 25, 2006. Our motto and mission: for artists to “sell their music not their soul.”  We envisioned changing the global music industry for artists for the better by serving, not exploiting, them. TuneCore’s impact was significant and immediate. It turned the industry on its head by removing gatekeepers, allowing all artists onto the shelves of the digital music services while not requiring them to give up rights and revenue from the sale of their music. It also provided the industry’s first transparent royalty system with easy 24/7 real time access. In late 2011, phase two of TuneCore launched with the announcement of its Global Publishing Administration service, allowing any songwriter access to a global publishing administration deal. This first-of-its-kind global pipeline permits all songwriters to access their additional royalties and enforce their copyrights while maintaining control and ownership of their songs.

With our vision, guidance, execution and hard work we made TuneCore the leader in its space as the largest music distribution and publishing entity in the world. From just three people in 2006, TuneCore grew to over 40 employees working out of the headquarters in Brooklyn, NY and the Publishing Administration office in Burbank, CA.

I am announcing today that I am no longer CEO/President of TuneCore and co-founder Peter Wells is no longer working with TuneCore.

Under our tenure, TuneCore took take significant market share away from the traditional major labels. As of July, 2012, TuneCore artists represent over 4% of all US gross digital music sales revenue and have sold over 610,000,000 units of music generating over $310,000,000 in gross music sales. More than four songs a second are sold on iTunes somewhere in the world by a TuneCore artist. Through the execution of the vision and the trust of the artist, TuneCore achieved about 40% of the market share of EMI and 25% of the market share of Universal in regards to digital music sales in the United States.

We were also able to attract artists across the spectrum: from emerging artists to the older legends and the new legends. Artists such as Drake, Soulja Boy, Sonic Youth, Nine Inch Nails, Zac Brown Band, Hoodie Allen, Civil Wars, Lecrea, Boyce Avenue, Kelly, Colt Ford, Ed Sheerhan, Alex Day, Aretha Franklin, Jay Z, Girl Talk, Blood On The Dancefloor, Jason Mraz, Nice Peter, Tiesto and hundreds of thousands more used TuneCore to place number one albums and songs on iTunes, Amazon and many other digital stores, breaking the control of the traditional industry while democratizing it.

Under our leadership, TuneCore changed the global music industry, provided hundreds of thousands of artists access to digital music services, shifted the power of the industry to the artist while administering hundreds of millions of dollars back into their hands under a new model, all while growing the company into a global force.

Peter and I look forward to continuing to change the industry on a global scale to the further betterment of artists, songwriters and investors and to issuing our next announcement.

For More Information:

347-688-6451 – ph

jeffcore(at)me(dot)com

peterwells(at)mac(dot)com

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10 Comments

  1. I just don’t think that’s true. The numbers don’t agree either. With an annual fee vs. percentage of revenue, it all has to do with how much you sell annually.
    I don’t know the numbers exactly, but if you sell something around 7 or 800 iTunes singles a year TuneCore is a better deal than CD Baby. The more you sell over that break-even point, TuneCore continues to get better relative to CD Baby.
    -Ben

  2. In terms of iTunes 6.99 digital albums, TuneCore becomes a better deal after something around 115 sales a year.
    Regardless, Jeff is a music business visionary and all-around great guy. It’s sad to see him go, but I’m hope he’s moving on to the bigger and better!
    -Ben Thompson

  3. Now that TuneCore seems to be sinking, if anyone is interested in learning how to sell music on itunes store or how to put songs on itunes store look up a company called ADEDistribution they can put your songs up on itunes, amazon, spotify, and google play

  4. Tunecore just isn’t profitable. It will get to a point where it will hurt cash flow to pay artists. Bankers eventually want out.
    I wonder if it will be forced to sell to IODA or a major?

  5. I’ve heard about these guys. I hear they steal your royalties! A friend of mine used their service and told me that he was ripped of by ADEDistribution. I wouldn’t recommend anybody using them unless you want to be ripped off!

  6. Bummer. I was a fan of Jeff’s work, and TC. He brought a well needed passion to the biz. Hope he didn’t pull a Derek Sivers. I have released on CDB and TC and can tell you for a fact that, unless your sales are less than $50/yr, TC is the way to go.

  7. I’m with Jeff all the way..Having done Business with Jeff since 2007 I feel he’s really been given the shaft here and im quite upset with Tunecore. Both Jeff and Peter and real stand up guys and the most honest execs ive ever encountered in the music Biz.
    I will most certainly be contacting Jeff and getting the scoop on whats happening…more importantly as an artist I will cease to do business with Tunecore as a sign of Protest and im sure most musicians will follow suit who have had great business dealings with Jeff. There is one thing I consider more important than money and thats “Loyalty to your friends and business associates”
    -Rob Mazurek
    Winnipeg,Canada

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