The pandemic has exposed who and what is important to businesses around the world. Many closed their doors until they could figure out how to operate safely, and others kept working. Other companies went completely remote, while others have done a hybrid of in office and remote work.
The music industry was hit the hardest as large assemblies were banned across the world. Countless tours, live gigs, and performances were canceled and unimaginable amounts of income lost. Some artists have adapted, offering virtual performances via livestream and accepting donations, and others have performed at virtual concerts and sold tickets. This time showed which music hosting platforms cared about the artists and their livelihoods, while others merely said to make more music. Bandcamp is going to be one of those platforms that is remembered for truly caring for the artists.
Back in March, Bandcamp waved its revenue share on a Friday to help artists and labels keep more of their money and use it to pay bills. The result was nothing less than astonishing; the Bandcamp community gave a little over $4 million directly to artists. This event, dubbed “Bandcamp Friday,” has been done several times has given over $75 million to artists. Because of the massive success of Bandcamp Fridays, and the fact the pandemic is far from over, Bandcamp will extend Bandcamp Fridays until the end of the year. They released an article with more detail.
What does this mean for the Christian Hip Hop community? Many artists in this sphere are independent and could stand to benefit from the generosity of Bandcamp and their fans. A lot of your favorite artists have music on Bandcamp and could really use your money. Bandcamp Fridays are on the first Friday of each month, instead of buying from iTunes or wherever you consume music, consider spending the money via Bandcamp.
There are artists like Armond Wakeup, who literally has a decade of music on Bandcamp, that could benefit from Bandcamp Fridays. This allows artists an opportunity to creatively reward their fans for purchasing music. Artists could release a song or project they’ve been sitting on at midnight on Friday and take it down when Saturday rolls around. People want to support good music but they have to be taught how, that’s up to the artists. Armond has done a great job of leading his audience to specific platforms at specific times. There are several Armond Wakeup projects that were released via Bandcamp for a few days and then taken down, never to be seen again.
The pandemic took any thoughts of normalcy and threw it out the window in the first quarter of the year. Artists have been wondering how to recoup the funds they lost; it seems Bandcamp has provided an avenue to create revenue. If fans really want to support their favorite artists, Bandcamp Friday is the perfect opportunity.