Helpful Web Resources
For Those in the Arts
To our many artist friends: This page will no longer be updated after
January, 2008. Best wishes to everyone!
found that these
web sites and web-based services stand out as either unique or unusual, especially
economical, or just by filling their niche in a particularly useful and
effective way for artists. Some are
commercial services, but many are free or offer free options. The listings
are continually updated and expanded as we find new and useful sites.
send us your suggestions.
= most recent additions)
provides terrific new license tools with which artists can release to
the public some rights to their works, while still reserving
others. This is especially useful for works that are promoted on the
internet, or subject to sampling or remix by other artists. The
Creative Commons web site
offers comic strip style narratives and Flash movies to help understand
these new tools and their uses. Highly Recommended!
Have you considered translating your artist information
for different cultures?
Lingo24 is a
completely Internet-based, full-range language services company with a
sub-specialty in web site localization - accurately translating web
pages while preserving the intended message and style of the original.
Alternate versions of existing documents or pages can be created, or
entire web sites translated into another language or multiple languages.
Lingo24's worldwide network of branches and people means that there
is very likely a Lingo24 translator available who is a native of the
culture you wish to reach - an invaluable asset. Two tiers of pricing are
offered depending on the grade of translation needed, and, unlike
many translation services, Lingo24 actually publishes their basic rates
online and gives firm advance quotes. Secure online payment can be
made in any international currency by credit card or PayPal, so the whole
process proceeds very quickly. With a media client list that already
includes MTV and the BBC, this company is attracting lots of the right
kind of attention from the international community.
digital delivery system from
artists and musicians a very clean alternative for sales of digital
content of all kinds. Payloadz offers a
simple, reliable, and inexpensive way to market your products from your
own web site, with top grade file security and instant payment management
through PayPal. An introductory account hosting up to 5 megabytes of
content is free, and beyond that you can choose either a flat monthly fee,
or a very reasonable percentage of sales fee option. Payloadz also
offers free placement in their
Online Media Store if you choose, and
additional visibility through their own product-sharing "affiliate" program, so that others can
help sell your products if you wish. All things considered,
Payloadz.com presently gets our recommendation as the general digital content
delivery system of choice.
a digital media company from Germany, is especially oriented to sales of
online music downloads. Users can create an online downloads shop of
their own, selling individual tracks and/or complete albums. Your
shop can be either free-standing, or customized to match the theme of your main web
site and used as a "page". There are no upfront costs
or monthly fees for a basic account - MusicDock claims only a percentage of each sale.
Hi-Fi mp3s up to 320kbps can be uploaded, as well as WMA and AAC audio file formats,
and full WAV files too.
Purchase payments are handled through PayPal, so international currencies
are accepted, and shops can be optimized for various currencies.
is an online e-commerce service that allows bands and labels to sell
their music from their own web sites, with buyers charging purchases
either to their credit card (via PayPal) or direct to their mobile phone
bill - currently a unique option among digital sales companies. Artists-First also provides sophisticated tools to
register and maintain contact with your fans. Combined with some
very innovative thinking about new music marketing strategies, this
company may have THE state-of-the-art online music sales program on the
planet at this time. Check it out.
1-2-3 Music Store
is software that allows musicians and record labels to sell song and
album downloads from their own web site 24/7, and keep ALL the profit.
This web 'store' is a fully developed system in a box, ready to plug into
your site - no programming knowledge is required. They'll even
install it for you if you wish for a small fee. It's suitable for
both individual artists and labels, can handle unlimited titles, and is
very reasonably priced.
tags and tickets are a COOL new way to promote your
concerts and music products. These colorful 'dog tag" style ID tags
turn your band name into a fashion statement. They can also be
encoded with bar codes that allow fans free downloads, or other perks like
merchandise discounts. Check it out.
A carefully crafted Press Release can gain you lots of
great publicity in a single stroke.
PRWeb.com is a
popular online newswire service that allows you to post a press release
for free. You may also pay a small amount to gain higher placement
in the day's listings if you wish. PRWeb's posts are syndicated to numerous
major trade publications, blogs, and private member journalists - very
effectively getting your message in front of news people who can then
relay it to their own audiences. You'll find onsite tutorials and
examples to help with composing and submitting a proper press release, and
every submission is reviewed by live editors, who will contact you if
needed with additional suggestions to maximize your post's effectiveness.
There's a bit of a learning curve, but once you master the art of press
writing... who knows what might happen next.
* Another great press
option for musicians is
"Announcing your CD release, upcoming tour or any other music- related
event has never been so easy. Just send us your press release and we
will deliver it to thousands of top music journalists, radio programmers,
freelance reviewers and Web site editors." Quick and easy,
moderately priced, and managed by real humans. Beat Wire will also
write your release for you for a modest fee.
You can post free notices of upcoming events of all kinds nearly anywhere in
the world through Upcoming.org, an established online service newly acquired by
Yahoo!.com. Quoting the site: "Upcoming.org is a social event
calendar, completely driven by people like you. Manage your events, share
events with friends and family, and syndicate your calendar to your own
site." Yahoo has
announced big expansion plans for this service.
Another free service of this
also allows you to easily publicize many kinds of events, from music to
visual arts, food to sports. After a simple registration you can
create a new listing for any geographic area.
is a fan
database management service that lets you send professional level
communications to your entire fan base with a single mouse click. Rich
Text, HTML, and full-action video "net spots" are available. You can expand
your fan base with targeted mailing list demographics, sell your concert
tickets online, set up your own e-commerce merchandise store, and email to
a list of up to 100 names for free. More new features are added frequently. This company was started by the McCartney family (yes, of Sir Paul
fame). You can bet they know how to handle a fan list!
Need some live feedback or peer and
professional reviews of your music? Check out
a showcase for artists looking for internet
exposure and critiquing. Sign up is free for up to five songs. You can also contribute
by writing some reviews yourself!
RadioDirectX.com Radio & Media Promotion
has a new low cost service called
that allows radio and club DJs to instantly download broadcast quality
files of your songs for immediate airplay.
makes your music available to hundreds of Internet Radio Stations and
Podcasters, as well as to conventional AM/FM and Satellite Radio Stations,
without the effort and expense of mailing out hundreds of CDs.
Instead, the DJ's find your music on the RadioDirectX web site, along with
a one page info sheet. You'll receive direct feedback on your music, and you can log in anytime to see who has downloaded your songs.
This could be a hot one! (A tip: Just promote your single best
song, or two at most, and then wait for feedback from your stations.)
Want to increase your online exposure
without lifting a finger?
musicSUBMIT.com offers full web promotion services for
musicians. This is by far the most comprehensive service of its
kind in the online music industry, and many artists are reporting
effective results. Very reasonable too.
now offers a Syndicated CD Sales program that can
place live song play links and buy links for your CDs with literally
hundreds of potential online sales outlets. Check out this new
Music and Musicians:
CD distribution database, a terrific free plus for distribution. In addition, all CD Baby CDs are
eligible for digital distribution through iTunes, Napster, Rhapsody,
Yahoo Music, and numerous other major digital download services, and are
listed in a major distribution catalog serving 2,400 brick-and-mortar
record stores. CD Baby
takes a very modest fee for their services, and pays artists their profits
weekly. Very highly recommended.
* Submit your music free to the
Podsafe Music Network,
a new free promotional service for podcasters, listeners, and artists
that lists only Podsafe (licensed for podcasting) music.
This could definitely get you heard in some new places.
* Would you like to have your music distributed digitally
by iTunes, Napster, Rhapsody, Sony Connect, and others?
will get your music into these sites for a very nominal fee, and takes
none of the profit from your sales. They also provide other useful
services such as low cost CD duplication, printing, and band merchandise,
and there is lots of great information on the Tunecore site to help you
promote your music.
Note: See also Nimbit.com
CD Baby, below.
You must have only ONE contract for digital distribution to the same
retail outlets, so do your research and choose carefully.
A comprehensive site for one-stop independent artist
of Massachusetts offers numerous high quality services for a single,
nominal monthly membership fee. Offerings include CD and ticket
sales online and at gigs with credit cards, digital online distribution,
personal music web site hosting and management, email marketing, radio
promotion, CD duplication/replication, printing of promo items, sales
accounting reports, and more. Nice work
One of the finest places to sell your CDs online
is CD Baby.
They will warehouse your physical CDs and fulfill orders with online
credit card payments, create a dedicated web page for you, and include you
in their online catalog which is searched over 150,000 times per day.
Presence in their catalog also lists your title automatically in the
Musician is a web-based management software program "for artists, labels, and
managers to book and track gigs and tours, communicate with fans, manage radio
and press promotions, and track radio play", all in one place.
Because it's web based, you can access your LiveWire account from any
computer with internet access - great when you're on the road. You
can also easily import your contact lists from other sources, and then
broadcast your emails and newsletters to all of your fans and venues
direct from LiveWire. Even if you don't travel, this kind of
organizing power makes a musician's life much simpler. LiveWire's
basic account is free.
A very cool
new way to tag up with other musicians is
You can browse or search their musician database by geographic area, instrument,
genre, age, gender, experience level, and/or intention, such as whether they
are looking to start/join a band or just jam. Then, you can hear
them play by listening to their online sound samples. If
you like what you hear, get in touch by instant messenger or through
MusicianMix's private messaging system. You can even get weekly
email updates of new musicians who join MusicianMix and meet your search
criteria, so your search never goes out of date. Good for
instructors and students finding each other too. There are other
cool features - check it out. Update 9/2007 - This site is
apparently gone from the web - too bad.
is a similar musicians wanted and musician
classifieds service with terrific features for musicians. They
are also paired up with a new site called
GigLeader.com that allows you to register your band for
hire in a
genre and geographically searchable database.
There is no fee for the basic signup, and customers searching to hire
bands can contact you immediately. Very cool.
Magnatune.com of Berkeley, California is an internet-based
record label offering an intriguing new "open source" model. Their
web site features preview listening and downloadable albums that are value
priced by the buyers. In addition, Magnatune provides commercial
licensing representation and media exposure for their artists, and many
are finding successful licensing placements for their material. The one
downside - you must allow your music to be sampled and remixed by others.
That's the nature of "open source". To learn more, visit their website.
the United Kingdom also has an unusual and promising new idea - why not
sell shares in your band? They offer a ten-year extendable plan to host
your music and handle and track the sales of your shares and downloads to fans
and supporters. Shareholders receive the right to download every
piece of music you produce, now and in the future. How's that for
built-in fan loyalty? The UK based service is presently available to
bands and share purchasers in 45 countries, using currency conversion
An expanded version of the "shares" idea is
being offered by
ArtistShare.net. ArtistShare allows fans to directly
support and participate in their favorite artist's creative process,
through innovative products that let fans follow the artist's work while
it's still in progress. Branded, limited edition, collectible items
are created during each project, and each piece is registered to an
individual fan/participant as their personal property. Artists can
sell advance shares in their projects while still in potential, thus
receiving part of the proceeds from their creative works up front to fund
the work. It's a fascinating business model that is catching lots of
attention among established music professionals. There are some
significant names that have signed on already, and likely to be many more.
burn-on-demand CD service. It's a pretty good deal, and an easy way
to get selling on Amazon too.
One of the most economical online duplication services
Brooklyn, New York. Kunaki's totally automated digital production
system manufactures and packages each CD/DVD order within minutes, whether
for 1 or 1,000, then
auto-ships it, usually the same day. Everything from the on-disc full color
printing to the final shipping package is retail-suitable quality.
Kunaki.com furnishes simple project software to
use in assembling your artwork for uploading to their servers. It has selectable stock themes built in
too, in case you don't have prepared artwork of your own. When it
comes time to add the audio content, just slip your CD or DVD master disc into your
computer's CD ROM drive, click a button, and the software extracts
and packages all of the tracks, in order, at full fidelity, into a single
master upload file. Kunaki will even send you a free preview copy of the finished product
Other features include a free UPC bar code, free online CD/DVD sales page, and
direct drop-shipping of
orders to retailers like Amazon.com and CD Baby. So if you have even
an ounce of the do-it-yourselfer in you, be sure to check out
you lay out lots of front money for CD or DVD duplication. Be aware
however that there is not much in the way of customer service... But
if you can work basically on your own, Kunaki's automated system works
just fine, and produces good quality results.
Another good option:
San Francisco also lets you upload and store your CD/DVD artwork on their
servers, and either upload or mail in your digital content at any
resolution you choose, all with zero setup or inventory costs. You can order
from one copy to a thousand or more anytime, and they will be
manufactured and shipped direct to any destination you specify within a
few days. Quantity discounts are offered in multiple steps. Mixonic's service includes very fine photo quality
full color printing on both the inserts and disk surface – which makes
a very handsome professional package. They also offer multiple
choices of cases and insert styles. More costly than Kunaki, but top quality products, and good service too.
CDs and Custom Merchandise:
offers artists the ability to create not only full-package, retail
burn-on-demand CDs online, (with magazine quality, full glossy
printing) but also your own custom tee shirts, hats, posters, framed
art prints, and many other useful gift, sales and promotional items.
All Cafe'Press products and processes are high quality, so your designs
both look and feel professional. There are no minimum purchases, and no cost
to you to design as many products as you like - Cafe'Press gets paid only
when your item sells. Graphics experience is not required, since
their online system walks you through the design process step by step,
using your own uploaded photos and images. Each design can be
previewed visually online as it is created, and modified later at any
time. You can even set up your own online store if you wish - also
MYBANDWEAR produces exquisitely fitted,
high-style designs in musicians' attire to radically enhance your on-stage
look. Their garments are individually custom tailored using over 18
body measurements, for a fit that conforms perfectly to every line, and
perfectly transmits your performance body language. Choose from
numerous progressive styles, or have MYBANDWEAR create a unique original
for you. You can even submit your measurements online if you wish. Visit their web site for style examples and a quote.
(As far as we can discern, this is a unique service for musicians.)
Music-Law.com is a portal of links to
help you find resources that answer common questions about
music law and the challenges of running a band, creating copyrights, work
for hire agreements, etc. Some linked services are free.
A fairly comprehensive set of commonly needed music
contracts and other legal forms can be downloaded from
Musiclegalforms.com. This is a commercial service however,
so expect to pay for the goods. It's no substitute for a real music
lawyer, but it's certainly a quick and easy way to acquire the forms you
may need in a hurry to contract a gig, rent a venue, fire a band member,
answer a request to license your music, etc. We've found that many
times just reading through the appropriate forms answers many legal
If you need a
professional, economical and easy way to independently exhibit and
sell your visual artworks online, ArtBeacon.com
of San Francisco allows you to set up your own online gallery/store at no
cost. Lots of other helpful features too, plus a vibrant artists'
community. They also have their own
with numerous useful web links to various U.S. state and local Art
Councils, Art Leagues, Associations, Clubs, Directories, etc. plus
galleries, vendors, and legal help with grants and copyrights.
Whatever your art medium and style, if you would like a professional's
help and creative feedback on your portfolio before
it goes out to galleries, jurors or curators,
PortfolioReviewer.com will work with you to optimize every aspect of your
presentation, and thoroughly tune up your art "marketing machinery" for
maximum effectiveness. They'll perform an expert, first person
review using your actual materials, and provide precise, direct feedback,
including specific suggestions to improve your portfolio's odds of making
a lasting impression. Help with your web site and mailing list is also
available. Visit their site for more details.
Web Site Building:
June 2006 note: A recent advent in the Web Hosting
world is that many modern shared hosting services, like the ones listed in
our Web Hosting section below, now offer basic "site builder"
software included with their hosting packages. These proprietary
programs provide a simple user interface that allows you to
construct your own web site online from a set of selectable templates, by just
filling in the blanks, so to speak. It's quite simple to do,
although the results may not be exactly what you would choose if you had
carte blanche. But while your site perhaps won't be state of
the art, it's enough to at least get you started at very low cost. Some
of them are even fairly sophisticated, and you can gain experience that
will be valuable for constructing your "main" site later on. So the whole purpose of this
paragraph is just to alert you to check with prospective web hosts when
deciding whether and how to build your first site. You might find
that they provide something usable to start off with, for free.
If you decide to go the full HTML route, one
less demanding alternative to learning
a major HTML software package is
from Image Line Software. This is the same company that produces
music creation software, and
many artists report very satisfying results using EZGenerator with a minimal learning
curve. EZGenerator was actually developed by Image Line for their own
internal use in creating their company web sites, but they've now made it
available as a retail product. A free downloadable trial version is
available on the EZGenerator site.
In the fast-changing world of web hosting, StartLogic of
Phoenix has taken a solid lead in value for artists. With enormous
storage and bandwidth (traffic)
allowances, support for all popular media and mime types,
a free domain name with each account, free setup, rock bottom prices, and
the ability to host up to ten independent domains under a single account,
StartLogic has simply blown the competition away. They also furnish
live 24/7 support, great site statistics, unlimited free email accounts,
free site builder software, and a host of site promotion tools for free.
All this with high customer service ratings and a 30 day money back
guaranty is very hard to beat.
* Our old friends at LunarPages.com
have recently reasserted their prominence in the web hosting world, and
we're proud to recommend them to you again. LunarPages' new package is
competitive, but the real forte' here is their terrific customer service
organization. Many artists are very comfortable and pleased working
with the folks at Lunarpages, and this alone makes them stand out from the
crowd. Their latest hosting deal includes all of the current most popular
and useful features for artists, plus greatly expanded storage and bandwidth
allowances, all at a very nominal price. Visit them yourself and see.
in Utah is our third choice for artist and musician web hosting.
With more than ample storage and bandwidth allowances, plus a perpetually free domain name and free domain
privacy protection with every account, BlueHost is also a great choice for
almost anyone for personal or business use. All major audio, video,
image, and multi-media formats are supported, and there's a wide selection of self-installing
scripts provided free, including the new Fantastico collection, to add
nearly any special web site function you can imagine. The BlueHost
user interface is the popular and multi-featured
C-Panel, which in our experience is
the easiest, most comprehensive, and most effective way for non-experts to
manage a web hosting account. For support there's a toll-free
24/7 telephone line available beyond their online help
center and searchable knowledge base. You can
host an unlimited number of fully independent domains within a single BlueHost account
at no extra charge, and prices are very reasonable with no set-up fees.
Web Site Helps and Tools:
Here's a handy dandy
Color Chart that we've found is especially helpful for choosing
backgrounds. The sample areas are large enough to get a pretty good
advance idea of the actual color when shown as a block.
Also very useful (and pleasant to use) this
color picker from
lets you see more easily how the hexadecimal color code system is
organized. If you happen to be into programming for the web, there's
lots of other interesting stuff here too.
If you are
ever curious how often your web site “goes down”, and for how long,
offers a free monitoring service that alerts you by
email whenever they fail to detect the site. The link above takes you to
their signup page. (This only works for web sites you own or have
administrative rights to, not for your page(s) on shared sites.)
You can view the way a search engine
spider would actually crawl your web site, while simultaneously checking
the integrity of all your internal and external hyperlinks, by using the
free online link validation tool from
They offer some other helpful free web tools as well.
A very useful set of free web page
analysis tools that we use frequently is found at
webmaster-toolkit.com Great for researching keywords,
checking link popularity and search engine position, generating meta-tags,
etc. There's even an automated web page analyzer that will make
recommendations for improving your site's search engine friendliness, and
many other free tools as well. Good stuff.
Remote File Hosting:
For image gallery viewing, large file transfers, disk backup,
and sharing online projects among collaborators.
In a way, Apple Computer's
iDisk service is the Mercedes among online remote file hosts for
either Macintosh or PC. They allow 10 Gigabytes of storage, 100Gig of
transfer per month, and offer a permanent mac.com web email
address, automatic file backups and synchronization among your various
computers, and a configurable personal home page on which to showcase the
files you wish to make public or share with associates. With the
optional Family Pack you can create up to four independent
sub-accounts for collaborators or family members, each with password
protection and workgroup file
sharing, and there are a host of other .Mac member benefits included. Apple lets you
test drive the service free for 60 days.
from AOL, allows 5 Gigabytes of free storage, with 50 gigs
available as an option. It offers many of the same features (except email) as
.Mac. There is also free "Power
Tools" PC desktop software that allows automated file backups and drag-and-drop
functionality right from within Windows Explorer. From XDrive you
can also stream music files to any computer on demand, or send
them direct to your web-enabled cell phone - pretty cool. Photo collections can be viewed online without the need
for downloading, and a "Web Grab" feature lets you instantly transfer
any online content directly into your XDrive account. Automated
backups from your PC are possible as well. With their newly
free 5 gig service, X-Drive has nearly made other remote hosts obsolete.
If you need file transfer
capability only, and not long-term storage, you can accomplish this
They accept any type of file up to 2 gigabytes for delivery to anyone with
an email address. The recipient receives an email with a link that
allows them to download the file from YouSendIt's server within 7 or 14 days -
great for transferring audio tracks back and forth during a collaboration.
Files up to 100mb in size are free.
Remote Backup Only:
Would you like the ability to perform fully automated backups of
all your music and art files to a secure off-site location? Mozy is the only free, full-featured remote backup service
know of that is fully automated. You can set up the Mozy system to automatically
maintain backups of up to 2 gigabytes of your data for free, and
higher disk quotas are very reasonably priced. This could be a
lifesaver in case of a fire or other disaster. When's the last time
you backed everything up? Now, finally, it's
easy. (Mozy for PC requires Windows XP, a Mac beta version is also
Other Resource Sites:
Explore thousands of art
galleries, museums and artists sites from around the world. Browse by
subject, medium, movement, nationality, music genre and more. Add
your own link free.
with numerous useful web links to various U.S. state and local Art
Councils, Art Leagues, Associations, Clubs, Directories, etc. plus
galleries, vendors, and legal help with grants and copyrights.
Compo10.com maintains a very useful and comprehensive
comparison chart of many independent music host sites on the internet.
It's in spreadsheet format showing each one's features, page loading
speed, Alexa traffic ranking, membership cost if any, etc., so you can
view the various plans side-by-side. Here's a direct link:
For some helpful and objective user reviews of many of these same
music hosts, visit Paula Lynch's page:
Singer/Songwriter/Illustrator also has a great
section on her site for both artists and musicians.
(Your privacy is assured, no
information is retained.)
Suggest Valuable Sites...
Have you found an especially valuable or useful service for artists on the web?
Send us their URL for review, and perhaps we'll add them to this list.
Please also send us any user experiences or feedback you may have about the
services we've included above. This helps us improve the quality of
the list. You can email us here:
Contact Neon Egypt
Thanks, and Best Wishes
For Your Success!
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Note: While we
judge or have experienced each of these resources to be valuable services,
we of course cannot offer warranties or guarantees of their future
performance or products. As always, investigate options thoroughly,
and use your best judgment when making purchases or agreeing to contracts.
- Neon Egypt
Some of the
products and services listed above have affiliate programs, and pay
Phenomaly Arts a referral fee when a new customer finds them through this
page. These are just a small percentage of the sites featured here, and these programs play no role in
a site's selection for inclusion. Our goal is simply to share the
most useful and valuable products and services we've found. We verify that each
site offering a referral fee maintains the same price whether a customer finds them through
our page or by any other path, so
our information always remains free to our visitors.
- Phenomaly Arts
Web Resources for Artists and Musicians
Copyright 2005, 2006, Neon Egypt / Phenomaly Arts