I am new to the music business. I have been singing my entire life but performing for the love of music and then trying to make a living at it are two very different things. I am also learning about writers and how difficult it is for them as well. We live in a fantastically connected world. Youtube, Facebook, Soundcloud, Reverbnation and the list goes on. One of my songs off my first album I did a simple little YopTube video for has received somewhere near 300,000 hits. One of the two writers was concerned that she had not been paid for that. Being a person of integrity I wanted to make that right if I had done her wrong. What I found was a real shocker! First, being paid from YouTube as a writer is a very grey area right now, but it is happening. So, how much do writers make off of their songs being played and viewed? Well, here is one example:
Ellen Shipley, the co-writer (with a 50% share) of Belinda Carlisle's Heaven Is a Place On Earth reported receiving $38.49 for the 2,118,200 streams the track had accumulated on YouTube in the last quarter. For the over 330,000 hits her 'N Sync track I Drive Myself Crazy had on the video site, she received $4.31.
That's right, $4.31 for 330,000 views.
So the question is as an indie artist, hoping to make it big, how do we make a living at this? The answer is in merchandise. Selling T-Shirts, CD's, Download Cards and anything else you can put your brand on.
Do you have something that has worked well for you? I'd be very interested in hearing about it.
More ramblings from a guy trying to make it.