BY LUIS CASTILLA
Music platform Bandcamp is once again lending a hand to artists during the COVID-19 pandemic with the launch of their new interactive ticketed live-streaming feature.
Bandcamp announced last Tuesday the launch of Bandcamp Live. The new feature allows artists to set up a ticketed live stream.
Artists can set ticket prices and sell merch during the live-stream. There is also an optional streamside chat where fans can talk to each other.
Artists can choose to record their concerts. The recording of the show will be available for fans after the show, but this may take an hour or more.
Once the live-stream is over, the window will be open for an additional 60 minutes for fans to chat with artists and buy merch, just like at a real concert.
Bandcamp is also waiving their 10% ticket fee until March 31.
When an artist schedules a live-stream, that artist’s Bandcamp followers will be notified through the Bandcamp app.
Throughout the pandemic, Bandcamp has championed artist compensation with their monthly “Bandcamp Fridays,” wherein the platform waives its fees and 100% of money from purchases goes directly into artists’ pockets.
When the pandemic began, live music was among the first things to be cancelled and will likely be one the last things to come back.
Artists who relied on touring money were left basically jobless.
Struggles breed creativity, however. Many artists turned to live-streamed concerts through Instagram, Facebook and Twitch, but those platforms were not designed for live concerts and do not offer as many opportunities for artists to make money.
Artists on Bandcamp already have a following and merchandise to sell.
Bandcamp Live ties it all up in a nice bow with a concert where everything is available at once.
Bandcamp Live simulates the concert-going experience. You pay for your ticket, you watch the show and maybe buy some merch and meet some cool people while you’re there.
Going to a concert is a unique experience and Bandcamp Live is keeping the essence of that intact while giving artists a way to make money in a time when it is much needed.
Aaron Brotman, guitarist of the Los Angeles based band The Haunts, said he thinks this launch is a step in the right direction.
“Bands like us really make most of our profits through touring and selling merch at shows. At our level, you really can’t count on revenue from the streaming numbers of platforms like Spotify,” Brotman said.
“Throughout this whole quarantine, Bandcamp has definitely been the most artist-friendly platform with their Bandcamp Fridays once a month.”
The Haunts have held some live concerts over Instagram and Twitch during the pandemic.
“They’re not our favorite, but live-stream shows are still going to be the norm for a while, so we’re definitely looking into how we can make our live-streams better for everyone involved,” Brotman said.
Even with a vaccine on the way, it will still be a very long time before concerts are back as they used to be. Bandcamp Live is a necessity for both artists and fans of music alike.