I have been doing a lot of research lately about the current state of the music industry. Between Music 3.0 by Bobby Owsinski, The Long Tail and Free: The Future of a Radical Price by Chris Anderson, and quotes like this one from Tim O'Reilly: "Obscurity is a far greater threat to authors and creative artists than piracy," I've been rethinking my own approach with my music. This past weekend I had a great friend and fellow musician, Lori Lynn Barrett, recommend me to her several hundred friends on Facebook which prompted me to change the price of the digital downloads for my latest album, All Fruits Ripe, to be "name your own price." Basically, I wanted to give everyone the option to download the album and any individual song for free. Also, I like Bandcamp's option to "Name Your Price," which allows me to leave it up to you to decide to buy it if you so choose at whatever price you'd like. If you choose $0.00 as your price, all they ask for is your email address and zip, so that I can send you my monthly newsletter (which you can also unsubscribe from at any time).
For those who get my music from iTunes, Amazon, and other places, their prices remain the same. This is just a bonus for the really cool people who come directly to my site!
So starts my experiment with a new pricing approach for my music. Let me know what you think. If this goes well, I may extend it out to my whole catalog.