As the coronavirus has devastated the live-music industry, many have asked the best ways to support musicians who suddenly and abruptly lost their main form of income. The usual answer is “buy an album or merch” — and today (Friday, May 1) offers a rare opportunity to maximize the amount of that money that will go to the artists.
As it did in March, online retailer Bandcamp is graciously waiving its fees, allowing 100% of all sales to go to musicians — and it has pledged to do the same on the first Friday in June and July as well. It is an admirable move for a company that is itself independent and it bound to take a big hit from this self-sacrificing act.
If there’s a time to buy music, it’s today. A link to the site is here, and a letter from cofounder and CEO Ethan Diamond is below.
“On March 20, 2020, we waived our revenue share in order to help artists and labels impacted by the pandemic. The Bandcamp community showed up in a massive way, spending $4.3 million on music and merch—15x the amount of a normal Friday— helping artists cover rents, mortgages, groceries, medications, and so much more. It was truly inspiring.
“But the pandemic and its impact on the music community aren’t over, so today, as well as on June 5, and July 3 (the first Friday of each month), we’re waiving our revenue share for all sales on Bandcamp, from midnight to midnight PDT on each day.
“(Over 150 artists and labels are offering discounts, exclusive items, merch bundles, and more this Friday.)
“Musicians will continue to feel the effects of lost touring income for many months to come, so we’re also sharing some ideas below on how fans can support the artists they love and how artists can give fans new, creative ways to provide support.
“It may sound simple, but the best way to help artists is with your direct financial support, and we hope you’ll join us through the coming months as we work to support artists in this challenging time.
Co-Founder & CEO