Category Archives: Bandcamp

High Scores: Ben Lukas Boysen and Sebastian Plano’s “Everything” Soundtrack

Ben-Lukas-Boysen-&-Sebastian-Plano---press-photo-by-Alexander-Schneider-600

Photo by Alexander Schneider.

I waver between thinking game-maker and animator David O’Reilly’s masterpiece, Everything, is something more than a video game and not a video game at all. Playing it feels much more like looking at a painting, or perhaps taking a psychedelic meditation retreat. In the game, the player takes turns controlling hundreds of individual objects and entities that are cartoonish abstractions of our own reality, from giraffes to microconidia to continents, clouds and eventually galaxies. Eventually, one is able to create madcap worlds-within-worlds where a murder of crows might dance with submarines beneath the ocean, or a planet-sized record player plunks out strange noises in space. (There are, interestingly, no human beings roaming O’Reilly’s worlds.)

Two elements lend this beautiful but absurd experience some real weight. The inclusion of hours of joyful and thought-provoking lectures from the great philosopher Alan Watts, and the expansive score from electronic musician Ben Lukas Boysen and contemporary classical composer/musician Sebastian Plano. Their pieces—anchored by Plano’s emotive cello and expanded by Boysen’s towering, organic ambient structures—are otherworldly and full of wonder. They swell and fade unexpectedly as the player tinkers, and they evoke something more than just beauty. They evoke awe. It is a remarkable experience, and the resulting Everything soundtrack—on the venerable Erased Tapes label—stands on its own as a startling piece of art. We spoke to Boysen and Plano via video chat, as they were drinking beers at Boysen’s home in Berlin. Continue reading

Chad Dickerson Joins Bandcamp’s Advisory Board

We are very happy to share that Chad Dickerson has joined Bandcamp as an advisor! Chad’s many years of experience running Etsy (one of the largest and most successful global marketplaces) will be hugely valuable to us as we continue to make Bandcamp the best platform for artists and fans around the world. Furthermore, his passion for music and appreciation of our artist-friendly model make him uniquely suited to help us grow Bandcamp in a thoughtful and sustainable way. Beyond that, Chad is a great human being and someone we look forward to spending more time with as a team. We could not be happier to have him on board!

Check out Chad’s announcement (and his kind words!) here.

Big Improvements to Selling Merch on Bandcamp

Merch on Bandcamp

Merch on Bandcamp had a good 2016. Vinyl sales grew 48%, cassettes were up 58%, even CD sales grew 14%. To date, fans have bought over four million physical items through the site, totaling $58 million USD, and merch sales continue to accelerate every year. But for as many great reasons to sell merch through Bandcamp as there already are, we know there’s still lots of room for improvement. Artists and labels need a lot more control and a lot more flexibility, and so today we’re launching several new features to address those needs.

First up, from the merch editor you can now add any number of countries as shipping destinations, set individual shipping rates for each one, and save those out as defaults that you can also apply across multiple products:

add countries and save as default.gif

If you’re sending goods out from more than one location, you can also now set up multiple shipping origins from your Profile page, and choose to charge taxes in more than one place:

set up multiple shipping origins

Once multiple origins are set, you can set individual rates and inventory for those origins, and we’ll automatically route orders to the appropriate origin based on the buyer’s location:

merch editor with multiple origins

(If you’re working with one or more fulfillment partners, you can assign them to different shipping origins over on your merch orders page.)

Finally, for the more technically inclined, we’ve also released a Merch Orders API that lets you query for new orders, mark existing ones as shipped, and search through older orders, filtering by label, band, or date. You can also get details about the merchandise you have for sale on Bandcamp, and update SKU and inventory information.

We hope you find all this useful! Please let us know in the comments what you’d like to see next, and don’t miss Bandcamp Daily’s monthly Merch Table column, where we highlight some of the coolest and craziest merch we come across. Thank you!

Update on Friday’s ACLU Fundraising Frenzy

Bandcamp

Thanks to everyone who stood with immigrants and refugees by joining today’s fundraiser for the ACLU. We’ve been inspired and overwhelmed by the outpouring of support from the artists, fans and labels in the Bandcamp community, who rapidly and enthusiastically backed this important cause.

With several hours remaining, we estimate that fans will have bought just over $1,000,000 worth of music today, which is 550% more than a normal Friday (already our biggest sales day of the week). All of our share of that (~12%) goes directly to the ACLU. The other 88% (less transaction fees) goes directly to the labels and artists, more than 400 of whom have pledged to donate their share of sales today as well. They joined a lot faster than we could keep up, but big thanks to Anti-, ATO, Barsuk, City Slang, Epitaph, Father/Daughter, Fat Wreck, Kill Rock Stars, Merge Records, Mexican Summer, Miracle of Sound, Rhymesayers, RVNG, Sub Pop, Four Tet, Neil Gaiman, Lushlife, P.O.S., Speedy Ortiz, and all of the hundreds more. You are all amazing.

Bandcamp Livefeed

The live sales feed on Bandcamp’s home page, at around noon today.

Of course we didn’t do this just to raise money: we also hoped to raise awareness. On that front we want to thank everyone who helped spread the word, including our friends at NPR, Spin, Pitchfork, Metal Sucks, Paste, NME, AVClub, Thump, Billboard, Huffington Post, The Stranger, Vogue, the ACLU itself, and yesssss! Daveed Diggs.

We also heard from a few people who were upset, and in sometimes colorful terms told us to stick to selling music. We really like what a guy named Richard Rutherford had to say about this over on our Facebook post, and think it’s a great note to close on:

“The bands you like and the books you read and companies whose products you enjoy are all run by people who hold opinions on how the world should work and how other people should be treated. Some of them are going to make those views more specific than others, but everyone’s got their line-in-the-sand where they’re not going to be able to keep it to themselves any longer. In a world where everything is influenced by political decisions, ‘staying non-political’ actually means defaulting to the status-quo and endorsing what’s happening in the system – expecting people who sell you things to do that, no matter how harmful the system might be to them and things they care about, is unreasonable. This applies to you too, of course – you have every freedom to stop supporting Bandcamp and to explain why you don’t agree with them, but by doing so you are being just as ‘political’ as them – we all are, that’s the point. Pretending that you’re advocating some higher plane of art when you’re really just maintaining the status quo is dishonest and unhelpful. It’s not as if Bandcamp ever even pretended to be apolitical. Their entire business model is a reflection of their social and ethical convictions, which they happily explain every year when they publish their accounts.”

Amen to that and thank you again!

#NoBanNoWall: Over 400 Labels & Artists Join Us in Donating Today’s Profits to the ACLU

Labels Donating to the ACLU

Over 400 artists and labels have joined us in donating their Bandcamp profits today to the ACLU and other organizations in support of immigrants and refugees. We’ve done our best to list them all here, but if you’re a label or artist who will be making a donation, you can let people know by sharing your information in the comments below. Bandcamp will be donating 100% of our share of the proceeds to the ACLU, no matter what you choose to buy, but the labels listed below are making additional donations.

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