How To: Artist royalties, indie v. major

October 14, 2008

POSTED BY MAX_PAYN: I have a REALLY IMPORTANT question, Mike, Do mp3 sites pay you actually? I sometimes buy couple of songs from mp3 sites, I’m not sure are they really paying you for that songs. what about abroad sites? Here Korea we have big mp3 sites selling your songs, I sometimes buy them…Nowadays people don’t buy CD, they buy mp3… so I really wanna know whether you can get actual benefit from them. Love you man. Anyway I did that survey but some error occurred, it won’t submit my survey! ….gave up…

M: Artists are supposed to be paid for all music sales (mp3s, ringtones, albums, etc.). Our label and publishing company are supposed to make sure all those sellers are doing the right thing.

For all the music makers out there, I should elaborate further: whether major or indie label, it’s not as much as you’d think. Even on a $9.99 album, the artist gets pennies. For each sale, everyone has to get paid out of that money; the store, the distributor, the record company; then your manager, lawyer, business manager, and more (at the end, if you’re in a band, you usually split it up among band members).

To see more of the scary underbelly of how it works, check this article out:

Here’s a really breakdown, based on a (highest price point) $18.98 CD:

$18.98 – suggested retail price in store (what buyer pays)

$14.74 – what’s left after subtracting for “packaging costs”

$1.33 – how much your band gets as defined by average major label contract (standard average, 2004. Complicated stuff, and varies slightly depending on your deal and who you sign with…but I would be willing to guarantee that most upstart bands today make less than this if they sign with a major).

$0.93 – what band gets after various managers commissions (estimated: 30%)

$0.23 – what you get if your band has 4 members

The bottom line? You just got paid less than a quarter on your CD that sold for almost $20. The funniest part is that the label actually charges you some or all of the studio costs, video expenses, tour money lent, promotion of album and singles, and other expenses, so they don’t pay you your $0.23 until they’ve “recouped” their expenses. Which could be never.

That’s why it’s important to think about whether or not it’s time to work with a label. If it’s just you and the fan, you make almost all $9.99. Even if you’re only selling a few hundred units, selling them directly can be worth it.


PS: Again, Donald Passman’s “All You Need to Know About the Music Business” is one great book to reference (It was even mentioned in the USA Today article).



  1. Xandro Pontillas on February 4, 2010 at 5:38 am

    ohhh…. Please.. To those who buy pirated stuff… stop that… Please buy original copies….

  2. melbournesQdawg on December 12, 2008 at 2:54 pm

    Another question: How did you become an artist and musician(in a band) at the same time? was music by day and art by night? i really would like to know about both industries πŸ™‚

  3. Elliot_aka_MC_Eli on October 18, 2008 at 12:13 pm

    Question: I’m in a band… and we don’t exactly have rich backgrounds. So, if we sign with a label of any sort, we will actually OWE THEM money until we get more popular?

  4. Ezza on October 16, 2008 at 8:42 pm

    which would be the reason you dont sign with anyone till you have a fan base to actually sell to. so if you do sign to a lable you can at least have a hope of covering costs, but may have the ablity to ask for a better price right? or is that too idealistic? cuz i gotta say that is a pretty shit amount of money to be getting for something that you’ve spent months on.

  5. AnkeNL on October 16, 2008 at 10:55 am

    Dear Mike,
    How do you get rich from being a artist then. Do you get more out of live performes then? Why do people wanne be fames then? Well I got to say when I really like an artist I always buy the CD of then. Even if you now say that you only get 23 cents out of it. Well come to Europe (the Netherlands) again some day then I can finaly see you live.

  6. diff on October 16, 2008 at 8:51 am

    Thanks for the account, I’ve been wondering how much the musician actually gets of their cds’ store price. And now that I know the truth I got to say it’s quite a pittance!

  7. LPLibrarian on October 16, 2008 at 8:48 am

    HOW TO: ARTIST ROYALTIES, INDIE V. MAJOR – Mike, do you get royalties when an idol type show uses your songs? Does the record company get a cut of that too?
    HERTZ RENT-A-CAR – My friend and I decided to make LP’s concert in Albuquerque into a road trip from Iowa. It was a very nice vacation (We also went to the Omaha and Kansas shows). When we were planning the trip we tried to get a Hertz Hybrid car and realized that it would be very expensive. I agree that the cars have to be accessible.

  8. vv55 on October 15, 2008 at 9:39 pm

    Hey Mike…
    I’d like to know why you will not come to Brazil. They were saying that linkin park would come to Brazil on 15 November, but now they are saying you are not coming. I can’t understand why you can’t came.
    Is there a good explanation for your not coming to Brazil?
    If you read this comment (I don’t think you will, you have more things to do) please let us brazilians know the real motive of this.
    I’m really sorry for writing it surely in the wrong place, but I think that brazilians deserve better treatment.
    Sorry if there’s any mistake and thankful if you answer this.

  9. msgirl on October 15, 2008 at 9:33 pm

    as i know,in my country and china….ur cds are not original….almost all cds are not original…eg:after releasing ur mtm,there were many cds(not original) were being sold…but i bought it…sorry i didn’t find the original one….from internet?it was impossible for me to buy from internet that time….and i’ve just found the original one… i see,all ur bogus cds are sold (hb,meteora,collision course,lp underground,mtm….the rising tied) here(near to china),and china..i don’t know how many cds are sold…many i think…cuz all lp fans in my country,and china buy these cds….cuz they don’t find the real one by the time u release it.. strange??

  10. moodyrocker on October 15, 2008 at 9:03 pm

    M-M-M-M-Mike Shinoda! I am so excited for the Glorious Excess (Dies), well not him dieing, but the art! I have been waiting for that special piece of art that I am going to have forever inked into my body. When I am old and saggy and not 18 anymore it’s going to be there! So! Is it going to be this time around you think? If it is I would love to have your autograph tattooed near it as well. Well, have a wonderful night!

  11. Ash_Qwerty on October 15, 2008 at 8:28 pm

    We can hardly judge Warner for what they’re doing though can we? I mean, we’ve all downloaded some LP music off random sites without paying haven’t we (sorry Mike)? Although i know download all my non-cd tracks off honest :-).
    But Mike & LP even support this- they’re that kind of band.

    Still, screw Warner :-). Everyone on the LPU Forums hates them anyway!

  12. Hawaii_LP_fan on October 15, 2008 at 6:52 pm

    Oops, did a ditto comment. Gomen! LP rules! πŸ™‚

  13. HMF on October 15, 2008 at 6:08 pm

    Hey, Mike! I just wanted to say that today is the day Chesteer broke his wrist on stage. Time flies doesn’t it? (not to memtion his hurt his back this month to) Is it ture that he was playing with his kids when his back went out?

  14. martinac on October 15, 2008 at 5:49 pm

    Wow at least thought they’d cover promo& video costs…Major rip off if u ask me! At least ye promoted urselves at d start & r well aware of how 2 do it so I guess ye c sum benifits 2 it. Dis goes to l_B LONG, relax d guy asks gud questions & I myself & clearly alot of other people wantd 2 kno a bit more on dis subject . Also AKITAGIRL question I had also wondered dis. How r profits shared in relation 2 art work. I kno ur work profits go 2 ur artstudent sponsorship(brilliant by d way) but do u have 2 share profits with many other people, art gallery etc.? U kno Im still annoyed ye pay for promo what exactly do labels get paid for?? Anyways thanks MARTINAC XXX

  15. Hawaii_LP_fan on October 15, 2008 at 5:28 pm

    .23 or less = payment from each cd sold? That is crazzy! Thank you for educating us on the hard cold business facts. I hope it changes in favor of the musician one of these days. Yes I know, it’s what it is but the % seems funky lookin’. Well, I hope you guys sweep in awards, have sold out concerts for a very looong time! As a fan, I can do my part in supporting Linkin Park every way I can & rally fellow LP fans to do the same by purchasing band merch, attend concerts, and buy special cd’s/ videos you put out! No worries, your fans got your back! Sendin’ love & respect from the big “H”. πŸ™‚

  16. soyuneik on October 15, 2008 at 5:13 pm

    Yea, its depressing. I really dislike the fact that each individual band member is given his/her “worth” via percentage. (e.g. bass player versus lead guitarist versus lead singer, etc.) Its hard enough keeping the relationships cool. Having them throw another variable into that just makes things worse. All the corporations care about is increasing profits. They don’t give a shit about you or how they have to do it. This is unfortunately how everything in this world works.

  17. BrazenEntity on October 15, 2008 at 4:37 pm

    to be cursed in the key of eternal pain; take whole the budding flower and scratch deeply the inner core of it’s likelihood, like a FreeMason making it’s mark on a piece of tangible good. awakening 10 years later, understanding the complexity of evil and the desecration of one’s path, not fully able to anticipate what lies beneath. beholding truth, a neon green inner core, answers guessed are found to be accurate, describing only what is consecrated by what has happened before. in honor, there are evil answers to the pressing questions of one’s tact… i can’t think of a closing ceremony, so one will work on loving kindness… purpose, perseverance, and above all, reflection….

  18. ShadowerLiltani on October 15, 2008 at 4:01 pm

    Warner stole your art. They only credit you because it’s the law. I think if we spread the word about how unnecessary labels/publishers are, maybe we’ll have a revolution where people can make more money and appreciate a fanbase at the same time. I’m glad you posted this. I was thinking about publishing with a company, but I’m going to self publish now and print the books on my own. You’ve made such a name you don’t need them. If ya can, ditch Warner, please. A lot of fans want to see this happen, I’m not the only one. See blog for more:

  19. Bajannez on October 15, 2008 at 3:37 pm

    Hey Mike. I play in a band myself, it’s my favourite thing in the world. When I started playing with the guys I never considered this. Playing on Projekt Rev with you guys is the dream. I’m going to go deep in learning to know the music industry. Maybe by reading that book, thank you for the advice.

    By the way, I know it’s off topic but I hope you’re looking: Why is some of my and many others favourite songs Points, Papercut and Somewhere I Belong cut out of the DVD? Dude, that sucks. I know you probably didn’t have anything to do with it, but you might know why? Hope it will be good anyway, there’s just too much slow stuff on it now, it’s not balanced in my opinion.

  20. pepper on October 15, 2008 at 3:34 pm

    Wow….that’s ridiculous. I had no idea it was that little. Guess that’s kinda scary when you just start out huh? lol

  21. lxlatinangelxl on October 15, 2008 at 2:34 pm

    O_O are you serious?……so you only get pennies per album sold?… I’m shocked….well not that much.I knew that the money didn’t only go to the band,but I agree in that having a major label can help in other FISHGOINGWEST said,I bet LP wouldn’t be as popular if it wasn’t for your label,and Mike,since you’re thinking on doing responses to fans,I’ll ask you this,in case you didn’t read my question… Why do you like Avenged Sevenfold? (not saying that they suck,I’m just curious,btw,I like them too xD) and what’s your favorite song and why? .any thoughts on ”Critical Acclaim” ???

  22. Curiosa on October 15, 2008 at 2:32 pm

    I’m sorry Mike I didn’t catch that. What was the name of that book again? :)~

  23. KATHYxx on October 15, 2008 at 2:19 pm

    OK wow, yesterday i exploded over this again on the LPU without knowing you made another blog post on it…now i feel redundant :/

    I think recoupment is a big issue there. That doesn’t encompass how much less money is made because of it. Peoples.. the band might get absolutely nothing for the first several hundred thousand CD’s sold. Or maybe even millions. It’s crazy. …if you can tell, i read that book now and i are smarts now.

  24. EduLP on October 15, 2008 at 2:10 pm

    hey Mike

    I’m Eduardo from Brazil. You can call me Edu.
    Mike, could you explain us why “Papercut”, “Points”, “Somewhere I Belong” and “Wake” are not on the new DVD.
    That’s so strange! We, fans, wanted a new full concert. 80% of a concert is not what we really wanted.
    You and all others Linkin Park members all say (or used to say) that you give 100% on stage. So, give us a DVD with a 100% of the concert. A DVD with 22 songs would be aweasome. There’s no reason to take them off.

    Nice job with the blog!!!!

    Sorry about the mistakes with English language.
    Take care

  25. Fishgoingwest on October 15, 2008 at 1:17 pm

    I’m really surprised that the artist only get pennies per album!Hence, even if one sells millions copies,he only can get several thousand dollars.

    Maybe being indie can be better as you said,but signing a contract with a major can benifit an arstist in the other way.For instance, I bet Linkin Park wouldn’t have been this popular if you didn’t sign to a major label.

  26. durg on October 15, 2008 at 1:14 pm

    holy crap! O.O
    i knew bands didnt get all the money or anything but wow, thats really sad.
    no more buying albums for me, psh. XD haha, kidding, but seriously, geeze..

  27. NeneLP88 on October 15, 2008 at 12:17 pm

    Very interesting post Mike! I’ve always wanted to know how things work in your damn field =P And who’s the best source of info for that? you, of course πŸ˜‰

    Said this, i wanted to ask you a question. How do things work when it comes to LIVE SHOWS? I absolutely don’t want to know numbers (you may be thinking “mind your own business, bitch!” xD). But just like.. percentages of the incoming. ‘Cause there’s plenty of people behind those ones too. Bands, bands’ crew, the venue, the venue’s crew, sponsors, all the ones you mentioned in your post.. and so on. Β°_Β°

    Thanks πŸ™‚

  28. cuz on October 15, 2008 at 11:39 am

    It makes me think how complicated and unfair today world is.

  29. lucky_cat on October 15, 2008 at 11:33 am

    ThatΒ΄s interesting, thanks for keeping us informed … and I think IΒ΄m with MARIA.

  30. Madlen on October 15, 2008 at 10:36 am

    Well a friend of mine uploaded some music in a website called music space that we have here and about a month or so later they called her and she’s about to sign a contract with them.The contract includes only using her music for ringtones for 3 years i think.And I was wondering about the money they have to give her so thanks for giving all that info:)Btw her brother got a deal too-he’s gonna release an album and do some concerts and stuff.And as far as i know it said in the contract that he must give the company every single song that he comes up with in those 3 or 4 years that he got signed for.

  31. maria on October 15, 2008 at 9:54 am

    Well, Mike, from your permission, I should say one thing that the problem (such as this) can occur or happen with anyone and be refered to anything). For example, a linguist (a scientist) in my country is not paid anything for his or hers book.
    The publisher gets the whole pie (all the money). So you know.. life is splitting us around, is testing us everytime.. and you every day face the difficulties and injustice but the positive thing is that you can choose with what label to work ))

  32. Luis_Kun on October 15, 2008 at 9:52 am

    Hi there Mike ! I am a trully fan of LP ! I listen to your music since I was 8 ! I always loved the voice of Chazz , but .. My favourite part of LP songs , is the part where you rhyme ! Man , If LP didn’t have this much success , you surelly would have a great future as MC ! I heard that you find funny when people call you LP’s MC but , you actually rock as a MC ! So , when will you release an album where you can release that hiphop vein of yours ?(only you , not Fort Minor !) Finally , please make an worldwide tour( PORTUGAL INCLUDED PLEASE πŸ˜€ ) of your art expositions ! I love them ! You’re quite an artist ! Not expecting an answer but happy if you read this , Luis

  33. rockermeg on October 15, 2008 at 9:37 am

    I’m confused… :-/
    Do you like AnCafe?

  34. Kalini on October 15, 2008 at 9:16 am

    Mike, thank you for sharing with us the real situation in the music business. It’s the same in every field. It looks like we are all working for the large corporations. Isn’t it ironic? If you can change something for yourself, it’ll be great! You must’ve heard that Depeche Mode left Warner Bros in august: “Risk something, take back what’s yours”. Take care, Krassie K.

  35. sweet_girl on October 15, 2008 at 8:14 am

  36. Shinizzle3 on October 15, 2008 at 7:43 am

    wow…0.23$…not that much… : / …and what’s with concerts? if one ticket costs 60euros…mhmm…i don’t know how much this in dollars is^^ so u earn more money with concerts than with cds? mhm…but before people come to your concerts you have to sell cds..huuh..what am i talking?! ><

  37. YuN_RoCks on October 15, 2008 at 7:36 am

    that’s crazy, labels live on your shoulders. I hope most of the musicians do music cause they love doing it and not for what they’ll earn from it, but you don’t make you happy, but they help. anyway, something tells me that with no label you can earn more but with a label life is much easier..but probably I’m so wrong. what a complicated world you live in guys!

  38. Gabry94LinkinParkfan23 on October 15, 2008 at 7:26 am

    oh thnkx mike πŸ™‚ LP 4ever.. byee πŸ™‚ PS: band’s CDs are too expensive! my dad is gonna kill me!! xD

  39. axrinekey on October 15, 2008 at 6:55 am

    Well, I’ve always wonder why band’s CDs are always so expensive..
    And I figured that they have to split the money, so it’s more expensive. :/

    I didn’t know those expenses and tour stuff are needed to be paid yourself again.
    I thought the company’s helping you to pay everything since you’re earning bucks for them!

    NO FAIR! 😦
    Poor you all.

  40. Sunnywow on October 15, 2008 at 6:49 am

    i can’t believe this. i thought about this before and i thought the band should get at least 30% of the revenue. if it weren’t for you guys making those album there won’t even be those people to share your profit. i know this is just how it works in the business, but still, i think you guys and all the other song writers deserve more.

  41. HybridMeteora798 on October 15, 2008 at 6:42 am

    BIG QUESTION MIKE! All your posts about the music industry really hit me hard. I am a musician who strongly believes in artist/fan communication and support. I don’t believe in music being a corporation. It’s still an art form isn’t it? On top of that, I have a huge physical disability which leaves me in a wheelchair. Getting things like venues and CD distribution/promotion is easier with a label right? But what if you don’t want a label, but can’t get one either because of a well, disability? By myself, all these venues/promoters see me as a gimmick. Like a label does. I need at least something! This is my job and passion! Any advice please Mike!

  42. ms_shock on October 15, 2008 at 6:16 am

    “I was going to post a few responses” so??? Post!!!

  43. zimminator on October 15, 2008 at 6:11 am

    dude thanx mike, ive always wondered about this question too. but dude, that sux. it makes me mad that all this time i thought i was giving u guys about 15 bucks per album, but now yer saying 93 cents? lame. when i pay for an album, i gladly gave the store money, but now im gonna be pissed when i give them money…

    so mike, i have a QUESTION too now. how do bands make money then? is it the concerts?

  44. MichaelFromGermany on October 15, 2008 at 5:58 am

    Very intresting to read this…
    Now I see how hard you got to work as musician if you want to earn money…

    and i dont want to think about the loss of money caused by people who are downloading the music from the internet illegal…

  45. Anne on October 15, 2008 at 4:54 am

    I don’t know how it is in the US, but we in germany do pay a lot more for CD’s. MtM made a hole of 30 EUR (~ 40 US Dollar) in my pocket ;o) Never mind, I love to spend money on things worth it…

    So, if a band of five members (f.e. LP :o) sale a CD for 1.000.000 times, every one earns 186.000$.
    Add every single from that album (approx 4 singles in one year) x 1.000.000 for just 0,10$ and you get another 400.000$ each.
    Add bandmerch, concerts and other benefits to that and one might think – life is not soo hard regarding the money…
    I know that this is window-dressing, but if the life of a “star” wouldn’t be worth it, we would have a lot less stars on the canopy πŸ˜‰

  46. murry on October 15, 2008 at 4:46 am

    It’s so frustrating how contrived these creative industries are. I just found out that if I sell a novel, I’ll only make 7.5% of the price of the book per book sold. And nobody reads these days, so if I do well, it’ll likely only sell a couple thousand copies. What I’m saying is, I’m keeping my day job. But since I usually pay full price for your albums the day they come out, I kinda don’t feel so good about that anymore. Not that I won’t continue to do so. But if there were a way you could be label-free, that would be sweet.

  47. max_payn on October 15, 2008 at 4:12 am

    Thank you Mike! for the response πŸ™‚

    anyway, OMG… I didn’t know that before. Then I can imagine how much you can get from mp3… no need to imagine, it’d be really small share… hm…

    I was just wondering, which would be more beneficial for you guys between buying CDs and MP3… I am shocked even buying CDs doesn’t make you much money….

    So you can make money on tour instead. Then would you just come tour around Asia again include Korea as soon as Chester get well, then It’d be best for both of us! πŸ™‚
    So my conclusion is… Come again here soon! πŸ™‚

    (I know last winter was terrible when you got here, but hey, we can warm you with our enthusiasm!)

  48. Jome on October 15, 2008 at 3:18 am

    So Mike, what are you really making money on? Touring and merchendise then?

  49. akitagirl on October 15, 2008 at 3:04 am

    How does this translate to the art world? I knew everyone gets a piece of the pie from a CD. But OMG!!! When you sell a painting at a gallery does the same type of system apply or does a painter fair better then someone in music?

  50. I_B_Long on October 15, 2008 at 3:00 am

    i already knew this. i guess i did learn something in school… anyway, i was just wondering, are you purposly responing to the same persons questions every time? or did you not notice? i dont mean to bitch, but this is the third time you answered to this person (including on the LPMB) its a little unfair to the rest of us, dont you think?

  51. outlawserenade on October 15, 2008 at 2:58 am

    Made me chuckle.. teH underbelly of teH industry.. and I actually know the person who pays your royalty from down here.. XD

    I’d say that bon jovi is still THE smart one – aside of Sex Pistols – when it comes to royalties and dealings with major labels.

  52. skindesbous on October 15, 2008 at 2:49 am

    So why don’t you do your albums just for downloading in the internet? that would be the best for you, and we’d know who is getting our money. And you could also add the album artwork to the download, so almost nothing would get lost.

  53. Raspberry on October 15, 2008 at 2:49 am

    Well, LP is the only band i buy cds for … you guys deserve it just demand more!!!!!!!

  54. Tom_Mac on October 15, 2008 at 2:40 am

    First off… I cant beleive that bands get as little as they do for CD sales, I always imagined it was much more than that.

    Secondly… Mike, what is going on with Road to Revolution. Cutting out Papercut, Points of Authority AND Somewhere I belong is criminal. Papercut and POA are classics, you surely can’t cut them out of the DVD… I was at the Milton Keynes show, and this is very dissapointing if these songs are getting cut!

    On a lighter note, new artwork looks great, its a brilliant concept and can’t wait to see more photos!

  55. drpd1 on October 15, 2008 at 2:19 am

    I like owning cds. Had to download no roads left though, didn’t find it anywhere else…………. πŸ™‚

  56. igus on October 15, 2008 at 2:08 am

    ‘nowadays people don’t buy cds’? eh… i buy cds and i don’t feel like i’m ever going to stop and start buying mp3… maybe i’m old fashioned… but c’mon! would i fill my shelves up with anything else?

  57. navee on October 15, 2008 at 1:40 am

    arent the tours the ones who paid the hard work?

  58. navee on October 15, 2008 at 1:33 am

    so basically is like “you go big or you go home” well so basically who makes it big are the ones who actually got paid well, but the more you mke that more you got paid isn’t? bands like nsync, spice girls and all that who made dolls, clothes, pencils or whatever still got paid for years because those things still are on sale or got sold, isnt like cds, books, special editions, blah things work out for the artists for years? anyway everybody has to start from the bottom dont get scared but yeah nobody gets inmidiatly rich for smiling, except for paris hilton… that sucks

  59. Frerard on October 15, 2008 at 1:19 am

    okay, the word “artists” is confusing in your answer. not saying that it’s wrong but to those who don’t know any deeper, they’d assume the artist means the performer/band/singer, whilst publishing represents the writers of the songs which usually called with the term composers, not artist.

    ouch, it hurts when you have to break those down huh? =P
    recoupable but not refundable. don’t you wish that is for advance payment the label gave ya xD

    anyway, what about collecting societeH (ASCAP and the bros.)? do you have a thought on performing right being applied at concert venues? cos i think that’s just off =|

  60. ruru87 on October 15, 2008 at 1:07 am

    OMG!!! it’s terriblely unfair for you guys. you work and you work and you work for what ? I always thought artists were supposed to be payed for at least half of the income!!! it’s awful… sorry to hear that.

    ps what a pity you couldn’t come back to shanghai last week. hope chester is getting better now. will you come back to shanghai later? please don’t make me wait too long.

  61. Aqua101 on October 15, 2008 at 12:24 am

    β‰ˆβ™₯β‰ˆMike, I hv to agree w/ “NOIDEA” Comment below. And now that you guys are considered as one of the best band in the world….still you take part in Music-for-Relief stuff, I think that’s what it counts and that’s what makes you different from other bands. BTW, I myself, seldom download MP3 from site, I prefer to own hard copy CDs (I like to keep them for a very long time). And Mike, how’s is Chester? How come we never get updates anymore abt him? Sorry if I sound demanding…I just worry sick abt him ‘coz LP is one of my fav band, I hate to know something bad happened abt you guys. Pls tell us honestly. β‰ˆβ™₯β‰ˆ

  62. MarishkaLP on October 15, 2008 at 12:03 am

    that’s not fair! you make the main stuff – music – and get less than any other person in this big line! shouldn’t they work for you? it seems like it’s you who work for them! i’m really sorry about that, Mike…

  63. ninguem on October 14, 2008 at 10:28 pm

    excelent post, so talking about this, i wanna know your opinion about mp3 “free” download, in brazil they want close one orkut community with more than 700.000 members, which everyday download thousands and thousands albums(including your albums with lp/fm or anything which you done). This community isn’t selling illegal mp3, we just trade the albums, i download to listen different things, i will never buy one cd from a band which i hate like paramore for example. so i download their cd to listen, i will not buy a expensive thing which i hate just to listen.

  64. nia on October 14, 2008 at 9:44 pm

    Yeah, I knew that artists get next to nothing from Cd sells. And thats why it pays, literally, to get involved in everything.

  65. NataliaForgotten on October 14, 2008 at 9:24 pm

    They actually “steal” the bands… I’m a drummer, so I think my band will be hungry for a few years, haha! Thanks a lot for the post, Mike. ^^

  66. Vomitorator on October 14, 2008 at 9:03 pm

    Mike, in this day in age, being in the music business and being around other artists who I must say are less fortunate than yourselves popularity wise, at what landmark point would you say a band has made “X” amount of money? Just as a position to strive for career wise. At what point does an artist start being able to buy their own house and feed their family? I’m always curious about the relationship between popularity and money being made. What do you think a band you see on tv all the time like paramore is making?

  67. Hybr1d_7h3ory on October 14, 2008 at 9:02 pm

    That was really interesting. I had always wondered how that works. I am pleased to say that I buy 90 %of the music I own. Apart from the artist getting the money the rightfully deserve, I just love having a cd, the cover art, the book let, and so on.Im glad to say I’ve put approximately 27 cents into Mike Shinoda’s pockets. I saw you guys put out a date for the new cd, I cant wait. I was in Germany when you guys where at Milton Keys and I tried ever so hard to get over there but it just didn’t happen, but I did get to see you in Hannover, Oklahoma City, and Kansas City this year so I guess that covers missing Jay-Z.

    end transmission…Hybr1d_7h3ory out …

  68. HeartlessAngel on October 14, 2008 at 8:50 pm

    Whoa… Not a whole lot of money made, huh? Thanks for posting this info, Mike. As someone who is aspiring to become a musician (thanks to you and the band =) ), I’m glad I was able to learn about this. Of course, I’m not in it just for the money, but it’s still something that’s good to know. Thanks again.
    Would profits on things such as music videos or LPTV episodes sold on iTunes/merch/etc. be divided in a similar way? I could imagine a video selling for $1.99 not amounting to much profit for the parties involved… But that’s what tons of loyal fans are for, hm? ^^

  69. ChesterDEAN on October 14, 2008 at 8:47 pm

    I’ve heard the best way to make money as a band/artist is with the live performances. Is that right? or you also get little money from that?. Anyway, it sucks that you get so little money for something you worked so hard, and then there’s people giving them away for free. But… thank god you guys rock and sell a lot of records hehe.

  70. Vomitorator on October 14, 2008 at 8:45 pm

    I have that book and its incredible

  71. Randomdudeof2010 on October 14, 2008 at 8:40 pm

    Dang it’s harsh to hear that bands get that little bit of money per record.. Makes me feel bad that there’s people out there downloading music from sharing sites, or torrents without paying for the music.. It sucks that artists not only get a tiny bit of cash out of records, but it’s sad how much they lose because of people illegally downloading their stuff..

  72. noidea on October 14, 2008 at 8:32 pm

    Yes, I already know that bands only get pennies from each record before I saw this article. It’s same with a lot of other business not just the music industry. I always though bands make more money through tour and merchandise so this won’t suprise me. The truth is the music industry is just like other industries, a lot of people get involved and a lot of people need to make money from it. The good thing is that you guys are one of the most famous band in the world and you now make a lot of money. Everything has its good and bad sides. I think the smaller band should worry about this problem more.

  73. TiffTiff33LP on October 14, 2008 at 8:23 pm

    Thats very helpful 4 someone that wants 2 start a band or something.Yo Dude ive always wanderd about that!!!!!!^^………Oh,does limewire count?Because its just a bunch of FREE mp3 downloads^^I use it….I got a quick question,When someone asks you what lp albums do you have,does having every song and every album on your mp3 player count as “having them”?Because I have like every single song on my mp3 player,but I dont have any cds.!!!^^

  74. WorldWarrior19 on October 14, 2008 at 8:04 pm

    Do you guys get to choose which songs get sold where? Like on itunes, only some of your songs can be purchased. When I tried to buy “No Roads Left”, I had to download it off of some sketchy site which i thought i might get a virus from instead of being able to buy it off itunes. And wouldn’t you guys get more money if it was sold on itunes because it is just you and itunes. Or would it be way less because itunes sells it for less? Why wouldn’t you guys sell all of your songs on itunes instead of only a portion?
    –And i felt bad downloading “No Roads Left” it because you guys dont get anything for it, but i didnt know where else to get it from

  75. Anstice on October 14, 2008 at 8:01 pm

    I knew about all that already. It’s the same with authors and their books, right?

  76. grace on October 14, 2008 at 7:59 pm

    good to know mike… i guess that’s the reason why bands sell everything they can….
    i know some artist are very ambicius… and expend more than they won…
    anyway…. you have a music for relief… and that is good
    have a good day… !

  77. marilou on October 14, 2008 at 7:52 pm

    i already knew that the artist only get a few pennies per record but don’t they actually make money out of the touring cycle usually following a new record?

  78. CherryRed on October 14, 2008 at 7:49 pm

    Sorry to hear that Mike! Thanks for that article. It was very informative!
    Is that why Artist’s make more money by selling merchandise as a band and doing their own individual stuff on the side?

  79. faiintx on October 14, 2008 at 7:40 pm

    well if thats the case, you guys must be RICH cuz everybody loves buying your songs cause you guys are the best band in the world!

    mike, you’re my idol =]

    i have a question, that i’ve been dying to know the answer to!
    In Shadow of the Day, Breaking the Habit, etc — there’s an orchestra or band playing the instrumental(ex. Nobody’s Listening – flute)
    How do you choose the orchestra/band that accompanies you?

    Btw, i play the flute & piano, and surprisingly, i play them both pretty well =D
    but then again, i’m only 13…so im nothing compared to professionals and stuff.

  80. BoC on October 14, 2008 at 7:39 pm

    Holy crap. I had no idea.

    I mean, I knew that you usually only got a few pennies for each record, but I had never seen it broken down like that or thought about having to pay back expenses.

    Thanks for posting and giving advice on this stuff. It’s really got me thinking about stuff with my band because we have been having this discussion recently…

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