Bandcamp is brilliant

For those unaware, Bandcamp is essentially a more indie iTunes Music Store—they don’t have any of the huge music labels there—but with a twist… you can stream entire albums before buying them (as opposed to the 90-second previews you get in iTunes), and a significantly larger percentage of the money you pay to them goes directly to the artist (Bandcamp says around 75-80%).

I found out about it around the start of this year, and it has me discovering and buying way more new music than I had previously. From 2013 to 2016, I’d added 30 albums to iTunes from various sources… this year so far I’ve bought 34 on Bandcamp! They have an iOS app that lets you browse artists by tag (usually genre, like “black metal” for instance, but there’s things like “female-fronted metal” that spans different genres, and really whatever else users have tagged the artist with), so I’ll spend an hour here and there just going through listening to new artists and adding albums to my wishlist, then once or twice a month will go back and buy a few of them.

One of the best bits is that the artists themselves set the prices and you can pay more if you’d like, and some don’t even have a minimum price. The highest I’ve come across so far us US$9.99 (currently about AU$12.50), which is a good bit cheaper than the standard AU$16.99 price you see on iTunes, and a lot have been closer to US$5.

They’ve also done some fantastic things like donating all their proceeds for a day when Trump tried his so-called “Muslim ban” back in January, and more recently doing a similar thing with the proposed ban on transgender service members in the US military.

So basically, if you like music and supporting artists, stop buying music anywhere else and start buying it on Bandcamp!

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