When Should I Start Music Distribution?

When planning a new release, you need to set the release date in advance to ensure your release goes live on all digital stores simultaneously and at the chosen date. We recommend you upload your music at least 2-3 weeks before the release date to ensure everything goes right.

Some artists may argue why it would take so long for the music distribution process? Below are some main reasons for this.

Firstly, all music distribution platforms will review your music upon submission. This process ensures that the contents (the assets and metadata) meet the basic requirements, including the audio file, cover artwork, and copyright issues. This procedure usually takes around 2-3 business days.

Once the distributor approves your music, the song(s) are forwarded to the digital stores for assessment according to their requirements and guidelines. This procedure typically takes around 2 days to 3 weeks, depending on the store. For example, it would take about three business days for Boomplay to approve the new releases.

Furthermore, you need to set aside enough time for your music promotion campaigns. Most distributors take around 2 to 3 weeks to get your music to the stores. You can utilize this period for the pre-save and pre-order campaigns.

Last but not least, reserve enough time to correct the possible problems and errors that may arise. It can be the audio flaws or cover artwork problems. If you submit your music 2 to 3 weeks in advance, this should be enough time to correct all the errors and meet your target release date.

For example, suppose you wish to release your new album on 19th November. In that case, you’d better upload your music to 8k Everest no later than 28th October.

Usually, with us at 8k Everest, it would only take ten days for your music to be live on all digital outlets. However, we sincerely suggest all the artists submit their new music 3-4 weeks in advance. This will spare you enough time to address any possible inconveniences during the reviewing process.

Cover Artwork

For your music distribution, there are a few things you need to prepare in advance: audio files, metadata (album title, track titles, artist name(s), release date, etc.), and cover artwork. In addition, you have to make sure the submitted assets comply with the requirements of music stores.

Today we will be talking about the cover artwork. Unfortunately, some artists do not know how to design the correct cover artwork. While some get their music content disapproved due to incorrect cover artwork and have no idea how to fix it. Therefore, uploading your artwork in the appropriate format is a defining step for music distribution.

Let us start with the most fundamental issue, formats. The accepted cover artwork needs to meet several technical criteria:

1. Format: JPG, JPEG, PNG, BMP, TIF, TIFF, or GIF
2. Dimensions: 1400×1400 px – 4000×4000 px
3. Size: Minimum 1Mb, Maximum 10Mb Per Image

Apart from the above basic requirements for your cover artwork, there are some other details that you have to keep in mind when designing your cover artwork:

1. No blurry or pixelated images
2. No URLs
3. No logos or branding that you do not have rights to use
4. No references to physical packaging or pricing
5. No pornographic (Explicit) imagery

In addition, the cover art should include either the release title or the artist’s name(s) on it. Otherwise, the cover artwork will be unacceptable. In some instances, the artists release a single of an upcoming album in advance of the album release. If this is the case, the release title on the cover should return the same name as the single.

Shall you meet any problems with cover artwork during distribution? Please write to support@8keverest.com, and we will get back to you soon. Afrotunes would like to assist with your cover arts, but we need to hear your voice before that.

Audio Quality And Format

This article is designed to help you get your audio files ready for distribution. Whether it’s a single or an album you’re releasing, music stores like Spotify, Apple Music, and Boomplay have specific requirements for the audio files they accept. That makes sense, right? They want music with high-quality sound, which makes you and them look better and for your audience to listen to good quality music.

All audio files need to meet specific specs to properly upload your music to 8k Everest for distribution to the digital stores.

1.Stereo Formats: AIF, AIFF, FLAC, MP3, M4A, OGG, Or WAV, up to 192kHz, 16-bit, 24-bit
2.Track File Size: 1MB to 1GB

If the description above seems strange, below are some key points to clarify that we need to share with you.

The two most used audio formats are WAV and MP3 files, so which one is better? one would ask. Most musicians upload WAV files to music distributors because WAV files are lossless, uncompressed, broadcast CD-quality music files. On the other hand, MP3 files are compressed with loss to a certain extent.

Your music may get remastered or reprogrammed by the distributor or the digital stores during distribution. In this case, the lossless WAV files will be committed to the original quality of your music.

The next thing is the audio resolution. It is not as important as the audio format but still can be an essential factor to your audience. In the 1980s, most Compact Disc Digital Audio (CD) used 16 bits per sample. However, with the advancement of the digital world, DVD-Audio and Blu-ray Disc can support up to 24 bits.

Now we have a question, which audio resolution should you choose when recording? Our advice is better to record at 24-bit and convert to 16-bit than to record straight to 16-bit. This is because the conversion process gathers the errors into the last 8 bits and gets rid of them.

After you upload your tracks to your 8k Everest account, you can click the play button and listen to confirm your audio file.

Don’t be afraid that your song’s playback isn’t as high in quality as your original file. This lower quality is only in the playback feature and does not affect the file going to stores. We deliver the highest-quality file that each store accepts, the same file you uploaded.

Participants & Royalty Splits

Did you know? With 8k Everest digital music distribution platform, you can easily add participants to your music releases and split royalties with featured artists, producers, or team members?

First of all, let’s go through the definition of participants in your releases: participants are anyone who contributed to the track that you are releasing, for example, composer, artist, label, author, songwriter, and so on. You can dictate the royalty splits between all participants as well.

Let’s talk a bit about the current producer deals. The most common deal struck between an artist, and a producer gives a producer a flat fee for their work and a percentage of future royalty gains.

For example, the artist pays a $100 fee to produce the song, plus 15%-30% (standard for independent producers) of the song’s net royalties. FYI, “net” means the royalties left over after recording costs, producer fees, distribution costs, etc., are deducted from the profit.

If multiple producers are working on the same track, typically, each producer would take a share of the total “producer” percentage offered by the artist. E.g., a 30% producer percentage split between 3 producers at 10% each.

This can be a little trickier if you’re part of a band. Giving each member equal song or album rights and an equal royalty split is highly recommended. For example, the producer will usually request 50% in hip hop, while the other top liners will split 50%.

Last part, how to manage my participants with 8k Everest? Please go to “Payment-Participants” to add new participants, input their PayPal email addresses, and fill in their outlet profiles. However, this is not mandatory, which means you can choose to take all the royalties and split them among all the members as you wish.