Friday, May 17, 2013

Independent musicians and Google Play Music All Access

If you ask me, I have one of the coolest jobs at Google: to create success stories for independent musicians on Google Play.

From my time as a music critic and band manager, I can tell you that no two musicians are the same, whether it's in the art they create or the ways they want to share that art with the world. Some artists will put their music anywhere to gain exposure with new audiences, while others are more particular about how their music is sold.

There's no right or wrong answer in this brave new digital world, which is why I'm proud of what we've built within the Google Play artist hub

Through the artist hub, independent musicians make the decisions about how their music is distributed on Google Play. Since there are no limits to how many albums you can distribute, and no per-album or annual fees, we've seen artists doing all kinds of interesting things with their music, like posting recordings from live shows. Still others, like The Civil Wars, Lindsey Stirling and Kopecky Family Band, have climbed our charts with studio recordings, after distributing through the artist hub.

Many musicians don't realize that iTunes isn't available on Android devices, but Google Play is. With over 900 million activated Android devices out in the world, that's a lot of potential fans for any musician to reach.

With the roll out of the All Access service on Google Play Music, we're giving musicians another option for distributing their music via the artist hub. Just as you can choose how and where your music is sold on Google Play, you choose whether to make your music available on All Access.

When you do, any All Access subscriber can easily add your music to their collection. Imagine your tracks popping up in a personalized radio station, or in a playlist handcrafted by the Google Play editorial team. I've been blown away by how spot on the recommendations are. Opening a Third Eye Blind radio station delivered songs more fitting than what I put on my own mix tape in 1998.

Independent artists can opt-in entire albums or just specific tracks for All Access.

1. Log-in to the artist hub at
2. Click on an album you want to add to All Access
3. Select "Edit Album Details"
4. Review the "All Access Setting"
5. Click "Publish changes"

The best part is that music fans in the US, Europe and Australia will still be able to buy your tracks, too (if you've opted-in to international distribution). Now you have two ways to earn money and find more fans.  

We know the money stuff can get confusing when it comes to streaming, so we've provided transparency and clarity in our Support Center.

At the end of the day, musicians want to create music, and not TPS reports, for a reason. It's our goal to help artists spend less time on the business of their music so they can get back to making it.

Cheers to the next chapter of Google Play.


Kurt said...

Hi Caren, nice post. Very interesting. I found it when I was googling trying to figure out why Lindsey Stirling's new album actually isn't on All Access. So you bringing her up specifically is puzzling. I keep checking but it's still not there on All Access. Any idea if it ever will be? Thank you.

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