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It also occurred to me that not a lot of people know about the company AWAL (Artists Without Labels). They're a music distribution company, every bit as good as CDBaby, and they don't cost anything upfront, which is perfect for starting musicians. They do take a 15% cut of your profits, but that really isn't that bad for free distribution to itunes, amazon, napster, etc. They're based in the UK though which might be why they are lesser known, but Thom Yorke (of Radiohead) uses them for his solo project, which was convincing enough for me. Check it out at www.awal.com.

Hopefully this helps, I know that I hated paying for distribution when I started, especially when I wasn't sure if it was worth it or not.

Good luck!

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Worth bringing up as an alternative. I've read a few things about them but haven't got around to using AWAL yet.

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There are tons of affordable ways to promote your music online today. Since the advent of personal mp3 devices and the demand of people to only buy the songs they like. The technology has come to the point that it is finally affordable by just about anyone. As far as distribution it really all depends on the market you plan on reaching. If you plan is to sell you music to everyone then you have a long and expensive road ahead of you. If you are an independent artist or label then you should just rethink your marketing goal of selling to everyone.

No matter how good you or your artist is there is no way you can reach the masses on a small budget and even if you did people are not going to buy something just because you had the money to get a message in front of them. You have to target the right people and only sell to those who are most likely to buy it. Online makes this easy because there are so many niche markets out there for every genre of music. With that mind just know that although you can distribute your music on sites like sound click, itunes, etc. If you are not targeting the people with the right message no one is going to buy what you selling.

Tyjon Hunter

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