Do you dream of seeing your music on a Spotify playlist? If you're a SoundCloud Pro or Pro Unlimited subscriber, that dream could soon become a reality, all thanks to SoundCloud's new distribution tool.
The Premier distribution tool allows eligible users to send their music to streaming platforms like Spotify, Tidal, Apple Music, Pandora, Deezer, Amazon Music, YouTube, and even Instagram.
So why would you distribute with SoundCloud as opposed to going through a digital music distribution site like TuneCore or Distrokid, or trying to get signed to a record label?
Well, SoundCloud says that it won't take a cut from your earnings, and that artists retain all of their rights to the work. According to Engadget, the company has also said that it will streamline royalty payments to artists, but right now, it's not clear how SoundCloud will do this.
There is a catch however; to use SoundCloud's distribution tool, you'll need to meet its criteria first. As mentioned before, you will need to have a Pro or Pro Unlimited account, be 18 or over, and have no copyright strikes against your music.
No remixes, please
SoundCloud also specifies that you will need to have "at least 1000 plays over the last month in countries where SoundCloud ads and listener subscriptions are active."
The distribution tool will reportedly only allow you to distribute original works of music, so you won't be able to send podcasts or remixes of another artist's work to the major streaming platforms.
It's not yet clear if samples of other tracks will also be banned – we presume it will be allowed if you have clearance from the original artist to sample their work.
Engadget says that, if you meet all the criteria, "you'll see a Distribute button in your track manager, and once you've added all the necessary metadata, you can select the services you'd like your music to appear on."
It looks like you'll be able to make your music available on the different platforms immediately, or schedule them for a release date "at least two weeks in advance".
This all sounds rather convenient, but without the marketing know-how of a record label, artists may find that their work gets lost amongst all the other thousands of tracks released each week on Spotify.
That being said, cutting out the middle man could save artists a significant amount of money that they would otherwise have to share with record labels, management, and distributors.