TuneCore Review 2013: The Good and the Bad

Time for distributing your music eh? Awesome and congrats on creating worthwhile art for your fans! There are two distributors I recommend including TuneCore, the other being CD Baby.

*Article updated for 2015*

TuneCore Review 2015 – The Good Stuff

First, artists receive 100% of net gain on all sales. If you’re selling a lot of music, this is definitely a lucrative aspect for you.

Second, you get a TuneCore Media player for the specific purpose of promoting your single/album release. This means you can share it on social media sites, your website, blog, etc.

Third, you’ll receive weekly trend reports from iTunes plus official music sales reports from all stores selling your songs. This is critical if you want to have an effective marketing plan.

Fourth, lacking cover art? No problem – TuneCore will make it for you.

Fifth, TuneCore is partnered with all the big digital companies like iTunes, Spotify, Google Play, Amazon MP3, Simfy & Deezer.

Sixth, TuneCore will collect publishing royalties for you, including mechanicals and public performance rights for a one-time payment of $75.00. (TuneCore’s cut of your publishing royalties is 10%, but you keep sole ownership of your songs).

Important Extras: Ringtone Distribution and something that is absolutely critical – 24 hour Customer Service Response because inevitably something will go wrong.

TuneCore Review 2015 – The Not-so Good Stuff

First, they don’t provide UPC barcodes for your tunes; this means you won’t be able to rank on “top” sales charts by Billboard and other music news publishers.

Second, TuceCore charges a yearly fee as long as you sell your music through them. For example, you pay $49.99 per album for every year TuneCore distributes it.

Third, TuneCore will only distribute your music digitally – no physical sales. This may not be such a big deal depending on how your fans consume music.

Fourth, there aren’t many extras compared to CD Baby.

TuneCore Review – Pricing

Type of Sale (All Digital): Single Album
You Get: 100% Net Sales*
TuneCore’s Cut: $29.99 first year; $49.99 every year thereafter (this is for every album you upload)

Type of Sale: Single Song
You Get: 100% Net Sales*
TuneCore’s Cut: $9.99 first year and every year thereafter

Type of Sale: Single Ringtone
You Get: 100% Net Sales*
TuneCore’s Cut: $19.99 first year and every year thereafter

Extra: Publishing Administration
You Get: 90% of Royalties**
TuneCore’s cut: $75 one-time fee; TuneCore takes 10% of all publishing license fees, including mechanical and public performance royalties

*Keep in mind, you receive 100% of Net Sales. The digital distributors that TuneCore is partnered with take their cut first. For example, iTunes gets roughly 30¢ per $1.00 song sold. This means your take would be 70¢. Note that this rule applies to all music distributors.

**TuneCore provides some perks in addition to your 90%. If you have music being distributed by other companies like Ditto Music, you can still register your copyright through TuneCore. The one-time service fee covers all songs you may compose in the future. Also, TuneCore collects royalties worldwide.