How to make money out of music has changed (you need to get creative)

Most people either download or stream music these days. What's the difference?

The IFPI reports that revenue from music streaming in South Africa has increased by 334.2% over the past year.

The Music Guru Sean Brokensha says that statistic must be viewed in context.

There isn't such a thing as a unified South African music industry.

Sean Brokensha, The Music Guru

He says the way to make money out of music has completely changed.

There is a difference between streaming and downloading. Streaming is having access to the music on a playlist but you don't own it.

The artist earns less than 10% in CD sales.

It doesn't mean you won't make money. There is a guy called Theuns Jordaan who recently made R1.7 million from his album Die Vreemde Stad. But that is one of those special interest groups.

Sean Brokensha, The Music Guru

But if the artist is in a more general category like rock, Brokensha says it is a lot tougher to make money from CDs.

The record company takes 18%, the retailer takes 41% (and many are closing down because they can't make it with those margins), the tax is 12%, the writer will get 0.11%, distributor 7%, and production costs 12%.

Sean Brokensha, The Music Guru

He suggests artists can make more money if they publish their music online. On a YouTube partnership agreement, for example, they get a fraction of a percentage of the royalties.

There are websites that sell music online for musicians.

CD sales have fallen and you need to find other ways of getting your music out there.

He says you need to be proactive, you need to gig and keep finding new ways to make yourself visible. Get your music video on YouTube.

The need and hunger for music has not died, it has increased even more. We just have the means to access a lot more music more easily.

Take a listen:


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