CASH Music, a Portland-based nonprofit designed to provide “open-source tools to artists looking to promote and sell their music online,” is shutting down after 12 years, it announced today. Co-founded in 2008 by Throwing Muses’ singer Kristen Hersh, L7’s Donita Sparks and Jesse von Doom, the organization’s three major components — artist tools, a blog and the CASH Music Revolving Fund — will all cease operations on July 10.
“There will be a longer post-mortem later from the org and likely a few of us as individuals,” the statement reads. “We are proud of what we were able to accomplish, frustrated by some of the things we weren’t, but thankful for all of you. Our community is so special.”
The organization enjoyed success and prominent support from acts like Run the Jewels, Bikini Kill and many others, and was designed to be an artist-centric operation. “CASH Music is a nonprofit organization and a new way of empowering artists and evolving past the mechanisms of industry that put musicians last,” its website reads. “Artists are leaders and keepers of our culture. Art is our safest space. There are people creating new protections for government, civil society, and the press. Who will fight for artists outside of traditional business structures? We will.”
A tweet from Maggie Vail, executive director of outreach & education and a longtime independent musician, sharing news of the shutdown reads, “Hi, this is a hard moment. Thanks so much to all of you that were a part of this. I’m so proud of the work we did.”
Another from Molly Neuman, president of Songtrust and drummer of Bratmobile, reads, “This is tough and unfortunate news but I could not be more proud of what CASH (Maggie and Jesse especially) committed to and gave artists. Thank you.”