Bandcamp Surpasses $100 Million in Artist Sales!

Artist-to-fan commerce platform Bandcamp has been a source for music fans to discover and support lesser-known artists since 2007. Earlier this month, Bandcamp announced just how much that support has grown–to the tune of $100 million in music sales (with the last $50 million of that coming in only the past 16 months).

Bandcamp has steadily gained in popularity since its launch. For artists, the platform can serve as an avenue to release their own recordings and eschew the typical label system, and the option to dictate the price of their music (or give it away for free) offers a control that they might not otherwise have. Fans can feel good making purchases through Bandcamp knowing that the majority of their money goes directly back to the artist, and also have the option to pay more than the stated amount–perfect for those music fans who have money to throw around.

In honor of Bandcamp’s sales milestone, and as a testament to the prolific qualities of Philadelphia’s talented music scene, Rock on Philly has put together a list of ten Philadelphia-based artists you can support through Bandcamp NOW. Go on and break out your credit cards!

The Sun Flights

This charming folk duo just released their newest album, House of Man, on Bandcamp–so new that their release party hasn’t even happened yet (it’s set for April 3rd at Bourbon & Branch, with songstress Chelsea Sue Allen and Arizona folkster Decker.) You’ll like their sweet harmonies and twangy guitar, whether it’s on this recent effort or on any of their previous releases, which you can also pick up on Bandcamp.

Psalmships

Psalmships is singer/songwriter Joshua Britton. Or, at least, he’s decided to “take all the blame.” Britton’s ghostly, folk-tinged productions are the kind to linger awhile in your mind, leaving behind wisps of lyrics and the last dregs of sustained chords. Whether you pick up the March 2015 release Old Waves Pt. 2 (the follow-up to tape-only release Old Waves) or any of the previous Psalmships albums, you’ll find it was money well-spent.

Kevin Killen

Chances are, you’ve heard this Philly songwriter/multi-instrumentalist, whether you realize it or not. In addition to his eponymous releases, Killen has had his hands in playing, producing, and recording with a veritable pile of other Philly performers (including Small Houses, Katie Frank and the Pheromones, and Mason Porter, just to name a few.) Later this year, he’ll be releasing his first full-length album, a follow-up to the hearty americana of 2013’s Laurelwood Road EP. If you need something to tide you over while waiting for the new album, try Killen’s recent cover of The Pogues’Streets of Sorrow“, a gorgeous and contemplative version that was released just in time for St. Patrick’s Day this year.

Hoots and Hellmouth

Soulful folk rockers Hoots and Hellmouth have been relatively quiet over the past year. Relatively quiet, of course, still included plenty of playing and some traveling, but the band spent most of 2014 focusing on laying down the tracks for their upcoming 2015 album release–the successor to 2012’s full-length, Salt, and 2013’s 2-track feature, both of which feature the easy vocals and percussive feel that make the band so great for listening to. Might as well pick up the entire funky, folky discography, really…and you can do it on Bandcamp.

TJ Kong and the Atomic Bomb

Gravelly rock band TJ Kong and the Atomic Bomb are often described as whiskey-soaked and post-apocalyptic, amongst other things. It doesn’t seem to faze the group one bit, since they go right on producing like the world is never-ending. The past year has seen the group take their annual pilgrimage to SXSW, release a killer 5-song EP accompanied by 3 exceptional music videos, and don elaborate costumes for the fifth iteration of their Halloween Rock ‘n Roll Murder Show. On top of this, they prepare to release another album in 2015–keep an eye out so you can make sure to get your copy before the world ends.

Ross Bellenoit

Whether he’s playing with rock project Divers, singing his own songs, or sitting in around town, the tones that Ross Bellenoit pulls from a guitar are unmistakable. Lucky for everyone with ears, this musical powerhouse will be releasing THREE full-length albums in 2015–and given the sound of the lead single he released at the end of 2014, audiences are in for a prolific amount of enjoyment. Fans can also encourage Bellenoit’s musical abundance by taking advantage of the Bandcamp subscription option; just $40 per year gets subscribers access to back-catalog items, all new songs, and subscriber-only exclusives.

Hop Along

This rocking Philadelphia four-piece has been the subject of a lot of press lately, mostly about their upcoming full-length album Painted Shut, the second for the band. From NPR’s spotlight on lead single “Waitress”, to the Pitchfork review of the same, there are plenty of press outlets talking about Hop Along, and for good reason. Their guitar-heavy sound can satisfy both your urge to bounce and scream along with a song and your need to get lost in the heavy lyrics written by vocalist Frances Quinlan. While Painted Shut is still awaiting release, it is currently available for pre-order on Bandcamp, and the band’s first full-length album Get Disowned is ready now for your purchasing pleasure.

Vita and the Woolf

After releasing their debut EP FANG SONG this past fall, Philadelphia sat up and took notice of ethereal pop group Vita and the Woolf. Bandleader Jennifer Pague’s acrobatic vocals are hard not to pay attention to, and instrumentation varies from simple to soaring, making the overall effect dynamic and eminently listenable. Now, the group hopes to follow up that effort by recording a new album, Tunnels,  with the support of fans through their Kickstarter campaign. While the band is within reach of their Kickstarter goal, chances are they wouldn’t mind support from their Bandcamp fans, either.

Kuf Knotz

The release of “Get Free,” Kuf Knotz’s catchy new single featuring The Lawsuits’s Brian Dale Allen Strouse, is a perfect example of what to expect from this experimental hip-hop artist. On top of a dance-friendly reggae groove, Knotz layers progressive lyrics, topped off with a floaty vocal hook from Strouse. A look at the credits for his brand-new album A Positive Light reveals more of this same collaborative energy: instrumentation ranges from lap steel players to a flugelhorn, and the album features vocal assists from powerhouses like Ali Wadsworth, and Ginger CoyleA Positive Light was just released on Saturday, but you can download it–and the rest of Kuf Knotz’s thoughtful discography–right away on Bandcamp.

Aaron Parnell Brown

Philly soul man Aaron Parnell Brown (with his band, he is Aaron and the Spell) has the sort of classic voice you could associate with the likes of Sam Cooke or Otis Redding. It’s rich and full, even in quiet moments. His smooth vocals fit in seamlessly with the elements of jazz, blues, soul, and even rock and roll that are all featured on the first Aaron and the Spell album, Sing (available on Bandcamp now), and the end result is a unified sound that is undeniably soul music, whether there’s a guitar riff blasting or laid-back piano accompaniment. With upcoming album The Tin Man due out this spring, one thing is for sure–it will be worth picking up as soon as possible.

Featured Image via Pixabay

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