Yesterday afternoon, news broke that TuneCore president and CEO Jeff Price would no longer be helming the company, which lets musicians — for a flat fee — stock their music in a range of digital retail environments. Also on the outs is TuneCore co-founder Peter Wells.
Future of Music Coalition has always been interested in business modsels that give artists unfettered access to fans. We see TuneCore and other so-called “digital aggregators” like CD Baby and Reverbnation as useful tools for many of today’s musicians. We’ve always been impressed with Jeff’s determination to keep the lanes open for artists who want to get their music out to the world without necessarily trading their copyrights or sales revenue for the privilege.
As expected, there is plenty of industry intrigue about why Jeff and Peter are no longer with TuneCore, with some rumors suggesting that the break wasn’t amicable. As we’re not in the gossip game, we’ll merely point you to this “open letter” from Jeff, which outlines how TuneCore helped transform the digital music space since its arrival on the scene in 2006. Several of the stats are quite impressive:
As of July, 2012, TuneCore artists represent over 4 percent of all US gross digital music sales revenue and have sold over 610,000,000 units of music generating over $310,000,000 in gross music sales. More than four songs a second are sold on iTunes somewhere in the world by a TuneCore artist. Through the execution of the vision and the trust of the artist, TuneCore achieved about 40 percent of the market share of EMI and 25 percent of the market share of Universal in regards to digital music sales in the United States.
Jeff closes the letter by saying, “Peter and I look forward to continuing to change the industry on a global scale to the further betterment of artists, songwriters and investors and to issuing our next announcement.” As they say, stay tuned.