If you want to find out news that you won’t read anywhere else, Amateur At Play’s House isn’t a bad place to look for it. So it turns out, even slightly to my surprise.
Back on May 9th, I ran a piece regarding tip-offs that had been sent into my inbox from a few different sources stating that Bandcamp were considering extending their infamous Bandcamp Fridays forever. In other words, making it a permanent feature of the site.
Bandcamp refused to comment on the email that I sent them asking about it, and indeed, a rather lofty journalist from one of the main dance publications sent me an email telling me not to write “such rubbish”. Well, that journalist might be feeling a little bit red-faced this morning when he finds out the content of an email sent to all subscribers on the site late last night.
It states “The next Bandcamp Friday will be on August 6th, and we’ll continue to hold those on the first Friday of the month for the rest of 2021”. So they’re taking a break for June and July, but will continue the event from August. Another email has been sent to Bandcamp to see whether they’d now like to comment on my original story.
Bandcamp Friday began last year back in March. It was the website’s response to the coronavirus pandemic decimating several income streams for artists, producers, singers and others in the industry – who saw live gigs wiped out almost overnight.
Since then, on the first Friday of every month, Bandcamp have been waiving their fees, meaning that artists receive 93% of the money from every sale, after payment processing costs are taken off. The normal percentage, according to Bandcamp themselves, is 82%.
This compares significantly favourably to the other online retailers – for example, Beatport take a punitive 60% of every sale for themselves. And now I’m hearing whispers within the Bandcamp tribe that they’re thinking about keeping this permanently.
A source emailed to say “The bosses have been thinking about it for a while now. They don’t think the pandemic ending will hit sales, and a lot of Bandcamp Friday customers come back regularly outside those days. They’re seriously considering the idea”.
I note with interest, courtesy of the taxpayer loving Resident Advisor, that Bandcamp is rolling out their vinyl pressing service to the bigger community on their site. Previously, it was an invite only service.
Vinyl has always had a certain mystery for me. I did learn to mix on vinyl in 2005, but I didn’t spend long on the medium. The digital revolution was well underway and I moved on soon enough. So my knowledge and skill of the medium would be rusty, to say the least.
But now that I’m mulling over the idea of pressing a few things to vinyl, it’s reignited that interest. It might pass again, it might not.
What would you like to see me pressing to vinyl? Let me know in the comments below.