There’s no doubt about it, digital distributors have become an integral cog in the indie musician machine.
Without a label to rely on, getting music on platforms like Spotify, Apple Music, and iTunes will require a distributor. Their job is simple: you pay them (either a flat fee or a subscription fee), give them your music, and they use their connections with DSPs (digital service providers) to get your music up and ready to stream or download.
Most distributors are inherently the same – sure there are differences in pricing structures and extras or features they provide, and by all means, you should do your due diligence and research them all – but, in the end, your music will be there for the world to revere. And that’s all that matters, right?
Well, actually, not all digital distributors are created equal. What if your distributor could get you in front of a major label? Meet, Spinnup.
Get yourself around Spinnup, the digital distribution platform getting independent artists in front of major labels like Polydor, Caroline, and Island Records.
Spinnup is a part of Universal Music; in fact, they were the first digital distributor started by a major label. As a part of Universal, they are taking digital distribution into new territory by actively focusing on discovering new talent and getting it in front of A&R from labels under their umbrella. Think Polydor, Virgin, Caroline, and Island Records.
Started in Stockholm, it’s now a worldwide operation. We had a chat with Georgie Koch, Spinnups’ comms manager, about the way it works.
“While signing a deal with Universal is in no way guaranteed, using Spinnup puts artists one step closer to the world’s biggest record label. We send new and high performing music to A&R teams around the world each week as well as manually listen to every release to help us pick up on the best talent.”
“To date, 44 artists have been discovered through Spinnup and have gone on to sign record deals with UMG labels.”
Spinnup is a subscription-based service, meaning you can sign up for free and you pay either a monthly or annual fee to get your music onto digital platforms.
“We place a big emphasis on fairness and transparency – artists keep 100% of what they earn, keep 100% of their rights at all times, meaning there’s no lock in – artists can remove their music whenever they wish.”
“We find a subscription model to be the most flexible as the artist only pays for what they use. If they’re not ready, or in the market to release an EP or an album, they simply pay the lowest fee for a single as opposed to paying a larger fee for an all-you-can-eat service they don’t need.”
The flexible nature of the service is suited to indie bands putting out their first releases, as it lets them test the waters. “
We find the annual subscription helps many artists in the early stages of their career to figure out what works for them, what releases did better than others, and to make concerted choices about what music they keep online as a representation of their catalogue, and which ones to remove.”
So far a slew of Aussie bands have jumped onto Spinnup, including Melbourne dream pop trio Stonefox and indie rock sextet, Elke and the Jandel. Check out the Spinnup website to find out more about what they offer.