Music knows no borders—neither should distribution
I liked the music, and wanted to buy the album, “Union Black,” which has been out for about a year. I clicked the iTunes link in the video, and it took me to the UK iTunes Store. I couldn’t buy the album from there, and the album doesn’t exist in the USA store. Same issue with Amazon MP3—not allowed to buy it in my region. The album was for sale on Amazon’s UK store or a few other European retailers, if I was willing to pay about $25-$30 after shipping (which I’m not).
When will artists learn that it is imperative that they make their music available in every region in the world? Okay, so Skindred’s UK label has no US distribution. And apparently hasn’t been able to get any for a year. In that case, the band should make the album available over their own website, a bandcamp site, something. I went to Skindred’s site, wallet in hand, ready to pay them for their music. But they wouldn’t take my money.
I expect the major labels to be obsessed with regional restrictions and have draconian contracts that would tie a band’s hands. But a group on an indie label should reserve the right to distribute themselves in territories their labels don’t cover. I’m guessing that Skindred wants to have a label in the USA but their just losing all the sales that they could get from Americans who liked their previous records or who just discover them. The days in which not releasing in a territory built anticipation are over; now it just drives potential purchasers to The Torrentz and other means of free, regionless distribution. And it’s indie bands that need every single sale the most.