Poking around Soundcloud the other day I happened across their “app” section, something I’d never checked out before. This led me to Vibedeck, a music sharing and selling platform with built in Soundcloud integration. It lets you create sets of your music, much like Soundcloud, and offers a number of different selling methods, including a “Fan Sets Price” option. There are also a couple promo-driven options, like “Tweet for Download” and “Email for Download”, which auto-generates Tweets and Emails respectively and serves your music to the user once they’ve followed through.
The interface is slick and easy to use, uploading is a snap, and you can even import sets from Soundcloud. If you choose the latter option, a “Buy This Set” link automatically pops up in the set on your Soundcloud page. Pretty damn nifty!
Even though I’ve been making music for 15 years, I’ve never felt very comfortable selling it. It always felt like a “work in progress”, and to ask money for something like that never sat well. I saw other artists come out of the gate with fully realized, very solid releases, and I wanted something like that before I considered passing round ye-old proverbial hat.
Lately it’s been less about the quality of the stuff I’m producing and more about just getting it out to people. Soundcloud has been great for that, and Vibedeck is the perfect sidecar. I’ve re-encoded all the tracks I’m really proud of as FLAC and added them to sets on Vibedeck, either with a “Name Your Price” option or “Tweet for Download”. I don’t expect to make money off this endeavor, and I’ll continue to offer lots of music up for free on Soundcloud. But, it is a great window into what’s possible down the line.
Check out my Vibedeck here, vibedeck.com/jeremyblake/, and check out a set from my page below.
Turns out what’s good in theory isn’t necessarily good in practice. I’ve decided to scrap my Vibedeck page after spending some time today trying to get it to work. Which it didn’t do. Or it did, but way too slowly. So it didn’t.
All delivery methods were either slow or broken (email for DL, Tweet for DL, and Paypal for DL). A friend was able to pay for my album, but the site made him wait a good 10 – 15 minutes before it displayed a valid download link. He was then able to copy and paste the URL for that confirmation / DL page into multiple browsers and get it to work again and again. Not super secure.
The “Tweet for Download” button generated the Tweet like it should, and then took you to Paypal and tried to charge you for a completely different release on my page. “Email for Download” claimed it would send you an email link to download the songs, but that’s yet to happen after about 20 minutes.
I’ve scrapped the page and gone back to giving everything away for free on my Soundcloud. It’s a shame, because I was truly excited about the service.
Vibedeck CEO Lior Shamir has contacted me in hopes of working out the bugs mentioned in the previous update. Will keep ya’ll posted.