Is there software that can help me sell my band's music online?
January 25, 2010 6:46 AM   Subscribe

How can I sell my band's album online? I'd like to use software hosted on my own server so that someone can pay me and get a digital download.

We want people to navigate to my band's website, see our bio and album art and all of that, and listen to some previews of our music.

Now I want to let people download the whole album (in a .zip) by either paying me through PayPal or using a "download code" that I give to them when they pay me in person.

My band is also considering a "pay-what-you-want" system, so if anyone knows how that might be executed (similarly to Radiohead's system) I would appreciate pointers in that direction.

I am specifically looking for software I can host myself on my own server. I am imagining a PHP script or something similar, but I am open-minded.

I'd rather not upload my music to a third-party website to sell my music, but if you have suggestions of really great websites that do that I would appreciate those as well.

Thank you so much in advance.
posted by ejfox to Media & Arts (5 answers total) 14 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: Bandcamp is what you want. It's a fantastic system that does what you want, it's very easy to set up, and you can make it live in a subdomain of your web site.
posted by ludwig_van at 6:53 AM on January 25, 2010 [5 favorites]

Amie Street is a great site for discovering new music. I know it as a music consumer but I love it. Bands have their own pages and the music starts out free (unless you're already well known, I believe) but, as popularity grows, songs increase in price according to demand.

Since it already has an established community of new music devotees who are willing to pay for undiscovered talent, it might help you get that first market you are seeking, even though you don't get to set all the terms your way. Worth checking out.
posted by cross_impact at 7:25 AM on January 25, 2010

If you are a little tech-savvy, try Zen Cart, or something similar. It can do digital downloads. My web host offers an automatic install with my plan, as yours might, or you may have to download it and install it on your web space yourself.
posted by bobbyno at 9:01 AM on January 25, 2010

Brad Sucks (who is also Metafilter member frenetic) wrote his own online store that fits some of the bills you're describing and might be adaptable to others.

My favorite solution to this problem is to just set up a standard PayPal button (complete with however many graded pay options and/or and open amount) and then direct people to an unprotected link to the download file. If they really want to steal it they'll find a way, though you don't have to go out of your way to point out that it's not really necessary to pay.
posted by nanojath at 10:34 AM on January 25, 2010 [1 favorite]

Seconding Bandcamp. I've never used their backend, but I've heard a lot of artists rave about it, and as a consumer I can attest that it works great.
posted by ropeladder at 11:44 AM on January 25, 2010

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