Is Grooveshark Good for Indies? Just Listen to This Artist

Was this just about the agendas of the RIAA and Google?

Universal Music Group wants Grooveshark dead, and Google was lapping up Congressional praise last week for removing the Grooveshark Android app.

But what about the little guys, the indies and unsigned artists of the world?  Are they losers in this?  After all, Merlin licensed their member content to Grooveshark, and there’s some question about where this collective stands on the matter.  And, plenty of indie and unsigned artists are making money off of this platform.  That includes Merritt Graves from Skyrocket Love, who wrote to Digital Music News over the weekend.

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Hi Paul [Resnikoff, publisher], I know a lot of people are talking about the Grooveshark model since the removal of its App from the Droid market earlier this week, but there’s a story that isn’t being told.

Grooveshark can be incredibly important for independent or unsigned artists.  They certainly are for us.

Shortly after uploading a few of our songs onto their platform, Grooveshark reached out and informed us that our songs we’re getting some of the highest approval ratings from listeners that they had ever seen.  They told us because of that, they wanted to get us more exposure. They subsequently featured us on their siteskin, on Grooveshark Radio, and invited us out to Gainesville to meet with them.  Our website traffic soared as a result and they did this all without asking anything in return.

In a world where artist’s “chart success” is often bought and paid for, this is refreshing to see.  The fact that Grooveshark took interest in us simply because of our listener scores and not because of any pre-existing “relationship” we had with them shows that they actually care about promoting music based on its merits and that they have genuine concern for unsigned bands.  After having personally visited their offices in Gainesville and having spent many hours with a number of them, I can tell you that support for unsigned music is a part of their ethos.  Many of them are musicians themselves and haven’t forgotten what it’s like trying to do music these days. This ability to empathize has made them much more effective artist advocates as a result.

Paul, thanks for taking the time to read this.  I wanted to share my experience in hopes of showing a different aspect of Grooveshark that not everyone may not be aware of.

Take care and all the best,
Merritt Graves (from the band Skyrocket Love)