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Bandcamp announces plans to simplify pressing vinyl releases

By | Published on Thursday 18 April 2019


Bandcamp has announced a new service to finance, press and fulfil vinyl orders for artists and labels on its platform. The company hopes this will allow more artists who wish to offer vinyl releases to do so. Currently, less than 10% of releases put out via Bandcamp are made available on the format.

“The format’s resurgence – once dismissed as a niche by product of hipster affectation – is now firmly established”, says the company. “And yet most new music is not available on vinyl. A mere 9% of the albums with sales on Bandcamp in 2018 offered a vinyl version, and thousands of those are sold out and appear unlikely to be pressed again”.

It goes on: “The reason for this situation – and the growing pile of untapped artist revenue it represents – is that producing vinyl remains challenging. It’s a costly and risky undertaking, and dealing with fulfilment and returns can be incredibly time consuming. Layer on top of that the mystery and complexity encountered by many trying to press vinyl for the first time, and it’s no wonder so few people do it”.

Bandcamp’s new system aims to overcome this, by requiring no upfront investment from artists and labels, as well as handling pressing and fulfilment. Essentially putting in place a crowdfunding system, orders can be taken from fans, but the records will only be pressed and shipped once a minimum number of orders is taken.

“The new service eliminates risk, since fans’ orders finance the pressing, rather than the artist or label”, says Bandcamp. “It eliminates hassle, since we press the records, print the packaging, and ship to fans – and fulfil digital too. It offers complete control, with the design and pricing up to the artist, and Bandcamp taking no ownership of the record”.

No date for all this going live has been announced, but Bandcamp says that it will be available to artists and labels later this year.