Type of site
|Direct-to-fan music platform|
|Industry||Crowdsourcing for musicians|
|Registration||viewing - no, selling/buying - yes|
PledgeMusic was an online direct-to-fan music platform, launched in August 2009. It was started to facilitate musicians looking to pre-sell, market, and distribute projects; such as recordings and concerts. It bore similarities to other artist payment platforms as ArtistShare, Kickstarter, Indiegogo, Patreon, RocketHub and Sellaband.
The company announced it was facing bankruptcy in May 2019, after a year of artists reporting slow payment problems.The company was granted permission to wind up on August 19, 2019.
PledgeMusic was formed in the UK and registered with Companies House on October 1, 2008 by Benji Rogers, Jann Tosatto, Jayce Varden and Rupert Selby who were all named as directors of the company in the company's incorporation document.
In the next few years, a number of complementary companies were also formed under the PledgeMusic banner. They were: PledgeMusic Retail Ltdon June 18, 2009; PledgeMusic Recordings Limited on August 18, 2010 (originally named PledgeMusic 2.0 Limited); and PledgeMusic Publishing on November 11, 2010. Benji Rogers was a director of all of the additional companies together with others in various combinations, some of whom went on to also become PledgeMusic.com directors.
Ginger Wildheart was awarded the 2012 Classic Rock Awards 'Event Of The Year' award for his PledgeMusic campaign.
By 2013, roughly thirty artists that used the site had subsequently signed label recording contracts.
In 2014, PledgeMusic reported a 90% campaign success rate (higher than Kickstarter or Indiegogo), with most artists raising an average 140% of their goal.PledgeMusic and Lynda.com teamed up to produce a documentary about 'super fans' and their role in the future of the music industry. The documentary features footage and interviews from SXSW and interviews with artists such as Nicole Atkins and San Fermin.
By the last quarter of 2015, all of the founding directors, with the exception of Benji Rogers, had left PledgeMusic. Rusell Rieger and Joshua Sason joined as directors in 2015 with Donald Ienner, Daniel Rowe and David Walsh joining in June 2017. Benji Rogers eventually left the company on February 18, 2018.
In early 2019, reports emerged of artists not being paid in accordance with their agreements with PledgeMusic.Also at that time, PledgeMusic's accounts for 2017 had not been filed with Companies House in the UK and by then were 4 months overdue. On 24 January 2019, PledgeMusic issued a statement via its blog page that claimed the company was having “discussions with several strategic players in the industry who have an interest in the PledgeMusic platform” and that it expects "payments will be brought current within the next 90 days."
On January 29, PledgeMusic founder Benji Rogers issued a statement saying he was returning to the company as "a volunteer strategic advisor and observer to the board." While the company was still working to "sort the back payments issue", Rogers claimed that "all funds coming into the company from now on will be managed by an independent third party (to be named soon)."
In February 2019, a company charge was placed on PledgeMusic by Sword, Rowe & Company LLC.
On May 3, a report was published in Digital Music News in which a leaked email was quoted, apparently sent from Robbie Wirdnam, an assistant manager at FRP Advisory LLP, who, according to the email, were due to be appointed as administrators for the winding up of PledgeMusic.com.The email was attempting to find potential buyers for all or part of the PledgeMusic business prior to selling off the company's assets.
Benji Rogers, the company's co-founder, stated in a blog dated May 8 that efforts to sell the company had failed and that "PledgeMusic will shortly be heading into administration".Rogers said that the crowdfunding platform had used money that was pledged for use by musical artists to pay off the company's debts instead. Many artists who were pledged money through the website will most likely not receive the money that was promised to them. John Zorn is among the artists affected, who is owed $197,559, money which was pledged to help him finish his 25-year-long project, The Book Beriah.
On 9 May, Kevin Brennan Labour MP raised the question of musician and consumer protection in light of PledgeMusic's collapse, in Parliament.
By June 5, a number of trade bodies in the United Kingdom, including UK Music, had launched a survey to investigate the impact PledgeMusic's failure would have on the industry.
Sometime between July 13 and July 25, the PledgeMusic.com website became unavailable. The latest archived copy held by web.archive.org was dated July 13.
On July 31, a petition to wind up PledgeMusic.com was heard in the High Court of London.The petition was presented by Russell Rieger on behalf of the directors of PledgeMusic.com, who at that time were Russell Rieger, Joshua Sason, Donald Ienner, Daniel Rowe and David Walsh, and was granted on August 19.
PledgeMusic went bankrupt before John Zorn and hundreds of other artists were paid money owed via campaign pledges.In November 2019, Failure frontman Ken Andrews alleged PledgeMusic owed them $75,000 from their 2018 album campaign. Andrews further claimed that former CEO Dominic Pandiscia changed the company's policy of ring-fencing artists' money in 2016. Pandiscia denied the claims and mentioned considering legal action against Andrews.
In March 2020, the BBC reported that the band CC Smugglers lost £20,000 when PledgeMusic went bankrupt. It also stated The Insolvency Service was still investigating the company's insolvency.
PledgeMusic considered itself a direct-to-fan platform as opposed to a crowdfunding website. Features that the site claimed distinguished it from similar competitors:
PledgeMusic had two distinct types of campaigns: direct-to-fan and preorder. In direct-to-fan campaigns, fans were not charged until the project target was reached. If a target was not reached, fans were not charged. In preorder campaigns, fans were charged immediately, and the artist was paid directly upon project completion.
PledgeMusic artists had the option of donating a percentage of their total or post-goal revenue to a charity of their choice. As of 2014, 67% of projects had been linked with a charity.Artists without a cause in mind were able to meet with the company's charity outreach specialist to pair them up with charities.
In 2010, while discussing the Digital Economy Bill Lord Errol, in the UK House of Lords, described PledgeMusic as a "rather clever idea" in the context of developing proportionate legal structures to protect copyright within the creative industry.
In June 2019, Musically reported that Kickstarter decided against launching a similar service due to being unable to find a sustainable business model that would support a high number of lower-volume creators.
List of artists that used the site to raise money:
|Release/End date||Artist||Type||Project Title||Label||Ref||Note|
|June 2019||Delphia||Album||Moonlight||Del-Fi||Money withheld by PledgeMusic|
|January 2019||Utopia||Album||Utopia : The Complete Bearsville Singles 1977-1982||Rhino/Bearsville/Warner Bros.|
|2018||Failure||Album||In The Future Your Body Will Be The Furthest Thing From Your Mind||$75,000 allegedly withheld by PledgeMusic|
|2018||Neil Innes||Album||Nearly Really||Innes Music||£23,000 withheld by PledgeMusic|
|2018||John Zorn||Album (11 cds)||The Book Beri'ah||Tzadik||Money withheld by PledgeMusic|
|2018||Men at Work||Album||Men at Work: You Better Take Cover (A tribute to Greg Ham)||PledgeMusic|
|July 2018||Willie Nile||Album||Children of Paradise||River House Records|
|May 2017||Toploader||Album||Seeing Stars||Big Lake Music|
|April 2017||While She Sleeps||Album||You Are We||Sleeps Brothers Records - Self Released|
|January 2017||Ubiquitous Synergy Seeker||Album||"New World Alphabet"||Independent|
|2017||"Weird Al" Yankovic||Other||Squeeze Box: The Complete Works of "Weird Al" Yankovic||Legacy Recordings|
|2017||Aly & AJ||EP||Ten Years||Aly & AJ Music, LLC|
|October 2016||Justin Guarini||EP||JG||PledgeMusic|
|2017||Erasure||Album||World Be Gone||Mute|
|2016||Demon Hunter||Album||Outlive||Solid State Records|
|2016||Marillion||Album||Fuck Everyone and Run||Intact/EarMusic|
|Unreleased||Culture Club||Album||Tribes||Different Man/Kobalt||The album was shelved in 2016 and refunds given.|
|October 2016||Sum 41||Album||13 Voices||Hopeless Records|
|-||Esmee Denters||Album||New EP||PledgeMusic||"Project was closed before goal was reached."|
|2015||Failure||Album||The Heart Is a Monster||INgrooves|
|2015||Christian Death||Album||The Root of All Evilution||PledgeMusic|
|May 2015||Ash||Album||"Kablammo!"||Atomic Heart Records|
|-||Macy Gray||Album||The Way||PledgeMusic|
|-||Plain White T's||Album||American Nights||PledgeMusic|
|-||Black Veil Brides||Album||"Black Veil Brides IV"||Universal/Republic|
|-||Unlocking the Truth||Debut EP||RED Associated Labels|
|-||RX Bandits||Album||"Gemini, Her Majesty"||INgrooves|
|October 2015||The Zombies||Album||"Still Got That Hunger"||The End Records|
|September 2015||David Cook||Album||"Digital Vein"||Analog Heart Music / INgrooves|
|September 2015||Silversun Pickups||Album||"Better Nature"||New Machine Records|
|2014||Erasure||Album (vinyl)||The Violet Flame||Mute|
|June 2014||Echo & the Bunnymen||Album||"Meteorites"||429|
|-||Rufus Wainwright||Album||"Prima Donna"||Independent|
|-||Matt Pond||Album||"State of Gold"||BMG Rights Management|
|-||The Birthday Massacre||Album||"Superstition"||Metropolis|
|-||Chali 2na||EP||"Against The Current"||Independent|
|December 2014||Dexys||Album||"Nowhere Is Home"||Absolute Marketing and Distribution|
|December 2014||The Enemy||Album||"Dancing All Night"||Cooking Vinyl|
|November 2014||The Vines||Album||"Wicked Nature"||Wicked Nature|
|November 2014||Terri Clark||Album||Baretrack Records / EMI|
|November 2014||Weezer||Album||"Everything Will Be Alright in the End"||Universal/Republic|
|November 2014||Interpol||Album||"El Pintor"||PIAS Entertainment Group|
|October 2014||Mobb Deep||Album||"The Infamous Mobb Deep"||Infamous Records|
|October 2014||Antigone Rising||Album||"Whiskey & Wine (vol. 1 & 2)"||Independent|
|October 2014||Jack Strify||Album||"ILLUSION"||Independent|
|June 2014||Sponge||Tour||Endless Summer Tour||Independent|
|June 2014||Sevendust||Album||"Time Travelers & Bonfires"||7Bros Records|
|June 2014||Peter Murphy||Album||"Mr. Moonlight Tour:|
35 Years of Bauhaus"
|June 2014||K.Flay||Album||"Life As A Dog"||Independent|
|June 2014||Klaxons||Album||"Love Frequency"||RED|
|May 2014||The Clarks||Album||"Feathers & Bones"||Independent|
|May 2014||Lindsey Stirling||Album||"Shatter Me"||Lindseystomp|
|May 2014||Buzzcocks||Album||"The Way"||Cooking Vinyl|
|May 2014||Devin Townsend||Album||"Casualties of Cool"|
|May 2014||Peter Andre||Album||"Big Night"||Independent|
|April 2014||Blake Lewis||Album||"Portrait of a Chameleon"||INgrooves|
|April 2014||Steel Panther||Album||"All You Can Eat"||Kobalt|
|April 2014||The Babys||Album||"I'll Have Some Of That!"||All In Time Records|
|April 2014||Joan Osborne||Album||"Love and Hate"||Membran|
|April 2014||Dan Wilson||Album||"Love Without Fear"||Kobalt|
|March 2014||Natives||Album||"Indoor War"||Transmission Recordings|
|March 2014||Kate Miller-Heidke||Album||"O Vertigo!"||Cooking Vinyl|
|March 2014||Tokyo Police Club||Album||"Forcefield"||Mom + Pop|
|March 2014||Stiff Little Fingers||Album||"No Going Back"||Rigid Digits|
|February 2014||The Presidents of the USA||Album||"Kudos to You!"||PUSA Inc.|
|February 2014||Reverend and The Makers||Album||"ThirtyTwo"||Cooking Vinyl|
|February 2014||Ubiquitous Synergy Seeker||EP||"Advanced Basics"||Independent|
|January 2014||The Hold Steady||EP||"The Unified Scene"||Razor & Tie|
|January 2014||The Rifles||Album||"None the Wiser"||Cooking Vinyl|
|January 2014||Hard-Fi||Album||"Hard-Fi: Best of 2004 – 2014"||Warner|
|December 2013||Flyleaf||Album||"Between The Stars"||Loud and Proud Records|
|November 2013||Mike Doughty||Album||"Circles, Super Bon Bon, and|
The Very Best Of Soul Coughing"
|November 2013||Apocalyptica||Album||"Wagner Reloaded"||RCA|
|November 2013||Umphrey's McGee||Live Album||"Hall of Fame: Class of 2012"||Nothing Too Fancy Music|
|October 2013||Slash||Album||"Nothing Left to Fear|
(Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)"
|September 2013||Katatonia||Album||"Dethroned & Uncrowned"||Burning Shed|
|September 2013||Lissie||Album||"Back to Forever"|| Columbia (UK/EUR)|
Fat Possum (US)
|August 2013||Juliana Hatfield||Album||"Wild Animals"||Ye Olde Records|
|June 2013||Sam Duckworth (GCWCF)||Album||"Amazing Grace"||Independent|
|June 2013||David Rhodes||Album||"Rhodes"||Independent||https://david-rhodes.uk/the-david-rhodes-band-album.html|
|May 2013||Donots||Live DVD/Album||"Wake the States"||Solitary Man|
|April 2013||Bring Me the Horizon||Album||"Sempiternal"||RCA|
|April 2013||The Whybirds||Album||"A Little Blood"||The Little Red Recording Company|
|March 2013||IAMX||Album||"The Unified Field"||61seconds Records|
|March 2013||Kate Nash||Album||Girl Talk"||INgrooves|
|December 2012||Ian McCulloch||Album||"Pro Patria Mori"||Independent|
|November 2012||Kissy Sell Out||Album||"San City High ALL STARS"||San City High Records|
|October 2012||LCD Soundsystem||DVD||"Shut Up and Play the Hits"||DFA|
|August 2012||Kill It Kid||EP||"Rarities"||Independent|
|July 2012||Ginger Wildheart||Album||"Hey! Hello!"||Round Records|
|July 2012||Ginger Wildheart||Album||"Mutations/Mutations 2"||Round Records|
|April 2012||The Libertines||DVD||"There Are No Innocent Bystanders"||Absolute|
|March 2012||The Infamous Stringdusters||Album||"Silver Sky"||High Country Recordings|
|October 2011||The Lumineers||Other||Dualtone|
|September 2011||Crystal Fighters||Deluxe Album||"Star of Love"||Independent|
|September 2011||The Subways||Album||"Money and Celebrity"||Independent|
|September 2011||Art Brut||Album||"Brilliant! Tragic!"|| Cooking Vinyl (UK/EUR)|
|December 2010||Madina Lake||EP||"The Dresden Codex"||Independent|
|July 2010||Ginger Wildheart||Album||"555% (aka 100%)"||Round Records|
|May 2010||Kopecky Family Band||Album||"The Disaster"||ATO Records|
|2016||Blind Pilot||Album||"And Then Like Lions"||ATO Records|
|May 2010||Princess Superstar||Album||"The New Evolution"||Independent|
In 2021, Kevin Godley's album Muscle Memory was completed and released by The state51 Conspiracy after the project stalled as a PledgeMusic campaign.
Some albums backed via PledgeMusic have charted, including:
PledgeMusic Recordingsand PledgeMusic Publishing had partnerships with the following companies:
PledgeMusic has partnered with the Hotel Cafe for SXSW 2011and 2012.
PledgeMusic has hosted showcases with CMJ.
PledgeMusic was nominated for the 2010 BT Digital Music Awards in the category "Best Innovation or Gadget".
PledgeMusic was nominated for the 2011 Music Week Awards in the category "Consumer-Facing Digital Music Service of the Year".
PledgeMusic was nominated for the 2011 BT Digital Music Awards in the category "Best Innovation or Gadget".
PledgeMusic was noted as one of Billboard's "Five digital startups to watch in 2013".
PledgeMusic won the Grammy Music Technology Lab in 2013.
PledgeMusic was nominated for SoundCtrl's 2013 Best in Artist Support award.
PledgeMusic was nominated for the American Association of Independent Music 2013 Annual Libera Awards (The "LIBBYs") 21st Century Award – celebrating the service provider or platform that was most beneficial to Independent labels and artists.
Co-founders Benji Rogers and Malcolm Dunbar were named to The Hospital Club 100 list in 2013 in the category of Music.
Benji Rogers, founder and president of PledgeMusic, won A&R Worldwide's International Music Industry Awards' Distinguished Digital Executive of the Year, 2014
ohGr is an American industrial band formed by Nivek Ogre and Mark Walk of Skinny Puppy. Early ohGr releases incorporated hip hop and synth-pop influences, and in contrast to Skinny Puppy, utilized conventional structures and a lighter tone. Ogre noted that this direction was inspired by the pop bands he enjoyed as a child, such as The Archies. However, in releases such as Devils in my Details, ohGr has taken to a more abrasive, non-linear flavour of electro-industrial, while continuing to release pop albums such as 2018's Tricks.
ArtistShare is the internet's first commercial crowdfunding website. It also operates as a record label and business model for artists which enables them to fund their projects by allowing the general public to directly finance, watch the creative process, and in most cases gain access to extra material from an artist. According to Bloomberg News, the company's chief executive officer, Brian Camelio, founded ArtistShare in 2000 with the idea that fans would finance production costs for albums sold only on the Internet and Artists also would enjoy much more favourable contract terms. ArtistShare was described in 2005 as a "completely new business model for creative artists" which "benefits both the artist and the fans by financing new and original artistic projects while building a strong and loyal fan base".
This article contains the discography of American pop and R&B singer Janet Jackson and includes information relating to her album and single releases. She has sold an estimated 100 million records worldwide, and is listed as the eleventh best-selling female recording artist in the US. She has attained 10 Hot 100 number-one singles, 16 Hot R&B number-one singles, and 20 Hot Dance/Club Play number-one singles. She also has a career high of 28 top 10 hits on the Hot 100, 29 top 10 hits on the Hot R&B chart, and 34 top 10 hits on the Hot Dance/Club Play chart. She is the first and only artist in history to produce seven top five hits from one album, Janet Jackson's Rhythm Nation 1814, and holds the record for the most consecutive top-ten entries on the US Billboard Hot 100 singles chart by a female artist with 18.
Sellaband was a music website that allowed artists to raise the money from their fans and the SellaBand community in order to record a professional album. Sellaband used the mechanisms of crowdfunding and was to be seen as a Direct-to-Fan/fan-funded music platform utilising a Threshold Pledge System / Provision Point Mechanism. It was set up by Johan Vosmeijer, Pim Betist, and Dagmar Heijmans in August 2006. Its offices used to be located in Amsterdam, Netherlands, but it was originally incorporated in Bocholt, Germany.
Jonathan "Jon" Charles Poole - also known as Random Jon Poole is an English multi-instrumentalist singer and songwriter. He is best known for his work as guitarist for Cardiacs (1991–2004) and as bass player for The Wildhearts and Lifesigns (2014-present).
Christopher Paul Persaud-Jagdhar, known professionally as C. J. Wildheart is an English musician of Guyanese and Seychellois descent. He is a solo artist and also a founding member of the UK rock band The Wildhearts.
Scott Sorry is an American singer songwriter. Prior to being a solo artist Scott played with The Wildhearts, Sorry and the Sinatras, Amen and briefly Brides of Destruction.
Ginger Wildheart, sometimes known simply as Ginger, is an English rock guitarist, singer, and songwriter. He began his professional career as a guitarist in The Quireboys, but is best known as the founder and leader of The Wildhearts. In addition, he has released numerous solo albums and has been involved in many other musical projects.
The American rock band Paramore has released five studio albums, five extended plays, two live albums, twenty three singles, one video album, and twenty six music videos. The band was formed in Franklin, Tennessee, in 2004 by lead vocalist Hayley Williams with guitarists Josh Farro and Taylor York, bassist Jeremy Davis, and drummer Zac Farro. In 2005, Paramore signed with the New York City-based Fueled by Ramen and released their debut album entitled All We Know Is Falling. Three singles were released from the album, but none of them charted. The album did not chart in the Billboard 200 either, although it peaked at number thirty in the Billboard Top Heatseekers. All We Know Is Falling received Gold certification in the United Kingdom and in July 2014 the RIAA certified the album Gold in the United States.
Fan-funded music is a type of crowdfunding that specifically pertains to music. Often, fan-funded music occurs in conjunction with direct-to-fan marketing. Fans of music have the option to donate and collectively raise money with the goal of jump-starting the career of a given musical artist. The fan-funding of music occurs primarily through web-based services using a business model for crowdfunding. Fans are typically given rewards based on their monetary contributions.
Direct-to-fan is a business model used by independent musicians, independent music labels, music marketing professionals, promoters, and others in the music industry. Direct-to-fan is also becoming a model used by the broad definition of artists, including comedians, visual artists, and other entertainers looking to build and leverage a fan community throughout their career.
Kickstarter is an American public benefit corporation based in Brooklyn, New York, that maintains a global crowdfunding platform focused on creativity. The company's stated mission is to "help bring creative projects to life". As of December 2019, Kickstarter has received more than $4.6 billion in pledges from 17.2 million backers to fund 445,000 projects, such as films, music, stage shows, comics, journalism, video games, technology, publishing, and food-related projects.
Blackberry Smoke is an American rock band from Atlanta, Georgia, United States. The lineup consists of Charlie Starr, Richard Turner, Brit Turner (drums), Paul Jackson, Brandon Still (keyboards), in 2020 they added touring personnel Benji Shanks (guitar), and Preston Holcomb (percussion). They have released seven studio albums, two live albums and five extended plays.
Anavae are an English-rock duo from London, England. The group consists of Rebecca Need-Menear and Jamie Finch. Following their self-released EP Into the Aether, the band signed with English indie label LAB Records in 2013, releasing a second EP entitled Dimensions soon after.
Life as a Dog is the debut studio album by American hip hop recording artist K.Flay. The album was announced in April 2014 and was funded by fans through PledgeMusic. The album was released to consumers who crowd funded the album on June 10, 2014 and was released via digital distribution on June 24, 2014.
Bones + Longing is the fifth studio album by Irish singer-songwriter Gemma Hayes.
Bandzoogle is an online platform which provides tools for musicians to build a professional website, promote their music, and sell direct-to-fan for a flat monthly fee. It includes a built-in store, mailing list tools, reporting and integration with social networks and services, including Twitter, Facebook, Bandcamp, SoundCloud, Twitch and Crowdcast. Members can also build an online press kit for their music. Users can choose from dozens of design themes or use a tool to create their own themes. The platform allows artists to keep a record of their sales, and requires no knowledge of HTML coding.
Blackalicious is an American hip-hop duo from Sacramento, California, made up of rapper Gift of Gab and DJ/producer Chief Xcel. They are noted for Gift of Gab's often tongue-twisting, multisyllabic, complex rhymes. The duo have released four full-length albums.
Tricks is the fifth studio album by electro-industrial band ohGr. The album was funded via a PledgeMusic campaign and was released on June 18, 2018 after a number of delays. The band raised $20,000 within a few days of announcing their campaign. The band embarked on a North American tour alongside Paul Barker's Lead into Gold and Omniflux.