This is part 2 in a series profiling SoundCloud users using Creative Commons licenses. to see the whole series, click here.
As the second part of our ongoing interviews with SoundCloud users utilizing Creative Commons, we sat down with EardrumsPop, an independent netlabel based in Norway putting out fantastic indie pop music from all over the world. Their latest compilation, Between Two Waves, is based on one of our favourite themes – collaboration – with artists and artwork designers working together virtually to deliver a wonderful three disc set.
Hi EardrumsPop! Can you describe what it is you do for us?
EardrumsPop is a netlabel focused on warm and melodic music in genres like indiepop, folk pop and electronica. We release free, digital singles, EPs and compilations in packages that include good artworks from our favourite illustrators and an informative booklet with info about the bands. We want to spread the word about bands we love, and since we also love artworks, we want to present good illustrators to our audience. By releasing this for free, we reach a lot more people than if people had to pay for these releases. It’s more fun without the money. Money changes everything.
How do you decide what to upload to SoundCloud? Is it just some of your material?
At the moment we have all 40 tracks of our latest compilation “Between Two Waves” on SoundCloud and when we start our next project, the new songs will also be uploaded there. The reason why we chose SoundCloud was because we needed an effective system for sending digital promos out to blogs and websites, and an easy way to share teasers from the album before it was released. After the release, SoundCloud has been perfect when we want to tell people about a specific band, or when we want to add streaming songs to our websites. We love the embed-widget option, and especially the ability to embed artwork into it. It allows us to show our great cover artworks while we stream the music.
How did you start releasing material with a Creative Commons license?
One of the main goals for our label is to spread the word about new and interesting artists. CC encourages sharing, and at the same time, it takes care of the artist’s rights. In our case, we want as many people as possible to listen to the music, so we want to specifically allow sharing of our releases. At the same time, we want to take care of the artists’ rights, and restrict what the listener can do with the songs without the artist’s permission. We want to be free’er than regular copyright, but not without any rights at all. “Between Two Waves” was the first of our releases where almost everything (39 out of 40 songs) was created especially for us and we could control the type of licence used. We always encourage the bands to use Creative Commons, but the decision is always theirs to make.
So, how are the licensing working out for you and the bands involved?
The songs have been shared, a lot, and the people who have used the music publicly have always (as we know) linked back to us and the artists. The songs have been used on several podcasts and been played on several net-radios. For us as a tiny label, it’s also much easier when people ask if they can use the songs. We can say yes, without going through managements, other labels or the artists because we know the songs are meant to be shared.
How has SoundCloud helped you? Do you engage with the community and are you able to use your SoundCloud page as a showcase for your audio?
It has helped us a lot, especially in the work to promote the release. We used SoundCloud to send out “secret” links to the songs before the release, and we also made genre-specific sets to showcase the music to special blogs who only write about one type of music (folk-blogs, indiepop-blogs etc.). The embed-option made it really easy for blogs to play the music to their readers, even if it wasn’t available for download yet. We still use it to showcase the album and specific songs for our followers on Twitter and Facebook, and we embed tracks on our sites when we write about the “Between Two Waves” artists. We do engage with the community, follow other “SoundClouders”, and especially the last few months, bands have sent us demos through SoundCloud. It’s a wonderful tool!
What does the future hold for EardrumsPop?
In October we will start releasing a series of monthly, digital singles. The singles will feature two new songs by the bands + a cover of a small indie-band they think deserve more attention. The covered band will also be featured in the booklet. The release schedule is firming up and there are some really good bands that we are excited to share! You will of course be able to listen to and download these singles on SoundCloud from the middle of October and the months after- start following us on SoundCloud so you know when they are out!
Great, thanks to Knut and the team for sharing the love! So, now you’ve read all about them check out a selection from their Between Two Waves compilation and follow them for the next batch of sunny tunes.