Fan-Funded Space Starts to Grow, Slicethepie Rumbles

Talent-scouting has always been an imperfect science, and a source of frustration for aspiring artists and managers.

But hard feelings aside, major labels have traditionally played a critical filtering role, especially in an earlier-generation media landscape.  Now, that role is being challenged by the democratic web, and the Wisdom of Crowds.

Early entrants into the discussion include Sellaband (sellaband.com), a UK-based company that allows fans to finance their favorite artists and benefit from the success.  Once an artist reaches a certain threshold, the band is introduced to production and marketing pros and stakeholders receive dividends.  The company has now forged partnerships with Amazon UK, Heineken Netherlands, and the Orchard.

Now, another UK-based upstart is also making noise.   Like Sellaband, Slicethepie (slicethepie.com) also invites fans to finance their favorite groups, though investors are also encouraged to gamble within a low-stakes market.  Both sites offer professional recording expertise after a certain financing level is reached, though bands are wise to compare the finer details before picking a horse – or running with both.