The industry is not broken.
It’s working as those who have always been in power intended. Companies have used leverage, financing, and relationships to establish a system that strips creatives of their ownership, their ability to price their own work, and creative freedom. While streaming and self-serve distribution may have opened up access, the core issues remain the same - the inequality gap between those creating the art and those profiting grows wider every day.
Radio stations and streaming services are fighting to pay artists less, but have built multi-billion dollar companies on the backs of their work.
You can not fix a system that is working as intended.
Record labels have set unconscionable terms with streaming services that divide the revenue pot based on the size of a label's market share and not fan-powered royalties.
You CAN NOT fix a system that is working as intended.
You have to rebuild it from the ground up.
This means operating radically different than the status quo. In January 2021 we launched Venice Distribution to give independent artists access to opportunities. Opportunities to learn more, earn more and meet like-minded people within a supportive forward-thinking community. We took the long road and built our distribution software from the ground up and we also took the same approach to building our community. Through meetups, dinners, and Discord we curated a group of creative geniuses that combined to serve as our founding members.
We’ve been fortunate to work with over 100 artists, managers, and independent labels. Our partners range from Amine, Riot Games, KOTA the Friend, Thuy, and Sonder. Whether just starting out or a global superstar - our goal has been for our partners to thrive creatively and financially while also remaining in control. Collectively our partners have crossed the billion stream mark within a relatively short period of time, but we knew they needed more. Not from just us but also from each other.
That’s why we’re announcing The Venice Music Collective, a token gated (NFT) membership that will serve as an access pass to the Venice ecosystem - distribution, recording studios, creative workspaces, sync, analytics, financial services, equipment rental, community events, and so much more.
A Brighter Future
In short, we value partnership. Not ownership.
In a world in which artists on average receive $0.12 of every dollar they earn, Venice has paid out millions of dollars to creators and their teams.
In a world where teams secure financing by relinquishing ownership of their masters, Venice has never owned a master. We pride ourselves on fair trade.
In an industry where traditional players have been reluctant to embrace NFTs and web3, we’ve onboarded artists who have made more revenue from music NFTs than they have from streaming royalties.
The tools, transparency, and spirit of web3 unlock an opportunity for us to reimagine independence all over again.
A New Model
The traditional independent model leaves artists and their teams with two options:
- Work with a do-it-yourself distributor.
- Sign to a distribution/label services company.
Option 1 is all software and has no support. Artists aren’t just looking to get their songs delivered to streaming services. They want their music to be heard and have an experienced community to call upon as they embark on independence.
Option 2, may get an artist some support but may come at the expense of creative and financial freedom.
Both options miss the point.
We designed The Venice Music Collective as a home for those who truly love music. We want the collective to be the community we wish we had when we were first entering the music business. We welcome artists, producers, songwriters, managers, music students, executives, and music collectors. Whether you’re using our platform for distribution or building your network in our Discord, you are welcome. Whether you’re attending one of our events or cutting your next hit in our studios, you are welcome. Whether you’re minting your first NFT or being added to the world’s biggest playlists, you are welcome.
To our existing Venice Distribution partners - thank you. Your support and trust have driven us to today. We would not be here without you and you’re a critical piece of our future. As a token (pun intended) of our appreciation, we will be gifting all existing Venice partners our Venice Music Collective NFT.
The artist, Verite, said it best when she said web3 won’t solve the problems of web2, but the thing about great communities is they solve problems together. Together we’ll reshape the music business and give the power back to creators. As intended.
Troy Carter & Suzy Ryoo
P.S - If you are already in our Venice Community Discord you might want to turn those notifications on. Don’t think we forgot about you :)