New Music Friday: Bandcamp to waive cut of sales to support artists


With the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) reaching pandemic levels, the mass cancellation of public events have led many artists across the globe to lose their source of income. Buying music and merchandise directly from bands and artists has been stressed as an essential way to get some coin into creatives’ pockets, and music hosting platform Bandcamp has announced it will waive its revenue share this Friday (March 20), with 100 percent of sales going directly to creators.

The fundraising campaign begins Friday at midnight Pacific time, running through the day for 24 hours, with Bandcamp taking no cut and all money going directly into musicians’ pockets.

“The Covid-19 pandemic is in full force, and artists have been hit especially hard as tours and shows are being canceled for the foreseeable future,” writes Bandcamp co-founder and CEO Ethan Diamond. “With such a major revenue stream drying up almost entirely, finding ways to continue supporting artists in the coming months is now an urgent priority for anyone who cares about music and the artists who create it. The good news is that we’re already seeing many fans going above and beyond to support artists across Bandcamp.

Diamond adds: “For many artists, a single day of boosted sales can mean the difference between being able to pay rent or not. Still, we consider this just a starting point. 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.

Diamond stresses that the best way to help the creative community through this crisis is with “direct financial support”, and this is certainly a step in that direction.