CD Baby Artists Earned More than $100 Million Last Year

CD Baby artists earned more than $100 million in 2018.

Several months ago, Spotify revealed its list of preferred artist distributors and label distributors.

Listing Distrokid in bold, the list also includes CD Baby, EmuBands, The Orchard, and FUGA.

These five companies will help independent artists and labels quickly get their music onto the service.

Then, just a few weeks later, Apple Music quietly unveiled its own preferred artist distributors.  Dubbed the ‘Apple Preferred Distribution Program,’ the company named just three music distributors as its ‘Preferred Plus’ partners – CD Baby, The Orchard, and Kontor New Media.

Now, one digital distributor has posted its numbers for 2018.

In 2018, artists on CD Baby earned well over $100 million.

The 20-year-old company claims it’s consistently paid artists “every single week without fail, no matter what.”

The figure has come from the following sources:

  • Streaming and download revenue.
  • CD and vinyl sales.
  • Social video monetization on YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, etc.
  • Sync licensing.
  • Publishing administration (for both performance and mechanical royalties).
  • The “label” share of licensed, non-interactive streaming royalties.
  • Other sources.

The huge bump most likely also came from its exclusive distribution deals with Spotify and Apple Music.

Speaking about the figure, CD Baby’s Chris Robley added,

ONE HUNDRED MILLION DOLLARS!  That’s a ton of money, but we’re expecting to pay out even more for the coming year as we open up new opportunities and expand existing ways of “monetizing” music.

This figure represents a 25% increase over 2017.  CD Baby had paid out $80.1 million, up 33% from 2016.

The company distributes 750,000 artists and over 9 million tracks.  CD Baby also publishes 170,000 songwriters and more than 1 million songs.  The company represents artists in over 200 territories worldwide.

Early last year, CD Baby claimed it distributed 650,000 artists, 140,000 songwriters, and 875,000 songs.


Featured image by GFDL (CC by 2.0).

One Response

  1. QBall

    What does this mean “The huge bump most likely also came from its exclusive distribution deals with Spotify and Apple Music”. What is exclusive about their deals with either?