What's the going rate in your area for a CD bought from the artist at the venue?

For curiosity - in your geographical area, what is the current going rate for a CD when you buy it directly from the artist at the concert venue? ‘Concert venue’ here being defined as the arena, concert hall, bar, coffee shop, subway station - wherever the artist plays and sell merchandise.

The last CD I bought from the artist at a venue was Simon Townshend’s Looking Out Looking In. It cost $15, which seems a bit high, but since it came with an autograph, a guitar pick, a handshake and a hearty “Thanks for coming to see me!”, I think the money was well spent.

My band charges $10, same as iTunes. Okay, it’s a penny more, but who wants to carry that kind of change around?

Huge range depending on the band. Many local bands charge $5. Some charge $10 with 3 (different CDs) for $20. A few “new” bands do promotional ideas where they give CDs out for free with a few flyers, but make you promise to hand out the flyers to friends.

National acts at the blues club I frequent charge 10, 12, or 15.


This summer I was in New Orleans with my sweetie. We were walking down a side street just past the French Quarter when we saw/heard Douglas Francisco playing and singing, sitting on the stoop in front of a small house.

We stopped and listened for a while. He had a small box with CDs and cash in it. When he paused to sip his drink, I asked how much the CDs cost. “Just give me what it’s worth to you”. I told him I didn’t carry around that kind of cash. He asked if we’d wet his whistle for a CD. So we walked down to Lafitte’s Blacksmith Shop and whistles were wet.:cool:

Hmm, interesting. I’m releasing a recording sometime in November, and I’m trying to determine the post-concert selling price. I’ve been using $10. as my target price, but given my current expenses, that means that I’d be losing 53 cents per CD. That has me thinking about $15., for obvious reasons.

I think the last time I bought CDs at a concert, they were $20. or $30. for two, but I’m not sure the extent to which iTunes et al have driven the price down.

Maybe $12 for a full album or concert set by an established (not big) band. Maybe $5 for what we used to call an EP length from a starting band.

It should have you thinking about your expenses. You’re getting robbed.

No, I’m not. My expenses include the commissioning of two of the compositions, the recording rights to four composers, 12 hours recording time in the studio, 10 hours editing time, manufacture of the CD and booklet, graphic design of the CD booklet, a photo session for the CD booklet and the services of a publicist.

The expenses for a classical musician commissioning and recording music to which a living composer holds copyright are different from the expenses of a singer-songwriter or band recording his own/their own material. For me, that’s an almost $5 per CD expense - but no, I’m neither being robbed nor am I robbing anyone else.

It’s of all over the map here in Chicago. As cheap as free all the way up to $20. Mostly $15 is what I’ve paid, but I don’t go to a whole lot of shows anymore. (Why don’t these damn kids sit down so we can all see? Git off my lawn!)

On tour we charge $15 in regular markets and $20 in high end markets. There is no reason to lose money, people will pay.



In Houston, $10 - $20 for local heroes. Seems the lame and self absorbed charge the most, and usually get it. There’s no accounting for tastes.

I’m in Houston. We hosted a house concert for Dave Nachmanoff last Wednesday (it was incredible). He sells his CDs for $20 each; buy 2, get 1 free.

I usually see $10-20 for jazz albums around here. I wouldn’t blink at a $15 price tag for an album of classical music.

Then your cost per CD estimate must include some sales projection, and must be pretty speculative. I think the response that your expense are out of line was based on the idea that your costs only included CD duplication costs, not the costs of writing, producing and recording all the music.

That’s right. I’ve never heard of somebody reckoning it like Le Ministre.

IIRC, when I bought Slim Cessna’s Auto Club’s “SCAC 102: An Introduction for New and Old Europe” at their Pittsburgh show, it was $20. If I’d been more patient, I could’ve gotten it signed, but I wasn’t patient. (Usually Munly works the merch table; for whatever reason, he wasn’t this time, though Lord Dwight was hanging around. He may have the chops, but he doesn’t have the charisma. ;)) It’s probably too weird of a data point to be useful though: Tiny (in terms of mass popularity) band, CD with no real new material (though some new arrangements of old songs), but with a DVD of their 20th anniversary show(s) in Denver included.

It depends on the scope of the band and the size of the venue. Basically unless you are a national act with a sizable following, it should be $10 or preferably less.

My fave local band sells CDs for $10.00.