Is Bandcamp Music's Savior?

The place where I buy music over every other, Bandcamp posted another record-breaking year. In The Bandcamp 2017 Year in Review, the music download site recorded "double digit growth in every aspect of the business." Hip hip hooray!
Digital album sales were up 16%, tracks 33%, and merch 36%. Growth in physical sales was led by vinyl (up 54%), CDs (up 18%), and cassettes (up 41%). Revenue from the 3,500 independent labels on Bandcamp grew 73%, and more than 600,000 artists have now sold something through the site. Our publication, Bandcamp Daily, grew its audience by 84%, and all-time payments to artists through Bandcamp reached $270 million.
This is great news, even greater if we take into account the otherwise dismal picture of the music business with everything in decline save for streaming. And streaming doesn't appear to be anyone's savior. . . at least at present.

Source: Nielsen 2017 Year-End Music Report U.S.

According to BuzzAngle Music, more than 99% of audio streaming is of the top 10% most-streamed tracks. If we do the rest of the math, this means that all other music accounts for less than 1% of all music streams. That is horrible in every way.

Here's one more bit from Bandcamp that should resonate with everyone:

We want a music platform to exist where the playing field is level, where artists are compensated fairly and transparently, and where fans can both stream and own their music collections.
Long live Bandcamp!

The Bandcamp 2017 Year in Review

funambulistic's picture

Lots of new (and otherwise obscure music) and I enjoy being able to download/purchase in a variety of formats - sometimes even cassettes!

Timcognito's picture

Bandcamp = Distribution + Artist Remuneration $$$. More choices, less middlemen

nick's picture

We are in a transition period, Bandcamp type platforms are a viable way forward that allow musicians to make a living

morrismrinak's picture

Cassettes up 41%. Never saw that coming.

DH's picture

More artists went this route rather than signing with big labels. The big boys still have lots of music I like.
On another note, I can attest that I am definitely in the 1% camp at Tidal. Probably less than 1% of my streaming is those popular cuts.

geoffrey's picture

"Cassettes sales up by 41%"
..and estimates of total music cassettes sold in 2015, 2016 and 2017?
Thinking it's a novelty for purchasers who did not grow up with music cassettes.
For audio hobbyists who grew up through cassette era, think few want anything to do with music cassettes. Granted some cassette recorders still popular and some retain cassette player for public library books on cassettes, but even there, most (lots of baby boomers) do library books on CD rather than cassette and public libraries are scrapping books on cassettes in many locations. I've been using public libraries at home interface to download recorded books for years. Moving forward fewer and fewer vehicles on the road with built-in cassette players. Soon enough bye bye all baby boomers and perhaps too their genuflecting to NRA's power.