Independent music bodies like Merlin and AIR in Australia have just helped artists take a giant leap forward. A new feature on Spotify allows independent artists to upload their music straight to the platform.
Previously, unsigned and independent acts would need either a third-party aggregator or a record label to get their music on the streaming giant.
In fact, some businesses created their whole model off of the fact Spotify dealt with third parties and charged a fee for uploads. CD Baby, TuneCore, Distrokid, Ditto and even Warner’s Level Music all charge upload fees or a yearly subscriptions to act as third-party digital aggregators/distributors.
Now, Spotify’s new upload feature is completely free via the Spotify For Artists platform. And according to MBW, it’s also not charging any additional commission on the royalties generated. The only request is that the artist uploading must entirely own the copyright of their recordings.
Spotify CEO Daniel Ek has been gearing up to this for some time. In a Q2 earnings call in June he touched on Spotify’s “two-sided marketplace” strategy, saying the goal was to get “as much music on the Spotify platform as we possibly can.”
Spotify ingests around 20,000 new tracks a day, so we should expect more technology acquisitions to cope with the increased load as it move with full-force into the user-upload realm, a la SoundCloud.
The feature, which arrives just months after Spotify inked direct, non-exclusive deals with independent artists, remains in invite-only beta mode. The announcement on Spotify’s blog notes that only a few hundred US artists are currently using the new feature for now.
Kene Anoliefo, Senior Product Lead at Spotify’s Creator Marketplace said:
“Just like releasing through any other partner, you’ll get paid when fans stream your music on Spotify. Your recording royalties will hit your bank account automatically each month, and you’ll see a clear report of how much your streams are earning right next to the other insights you already get from Spotify for Artists.
“Uploading is free to all artists, and Spotify doesn’t charge you any fees or commissions no matter how frequently you release music.”