RootMusic’s BandPage: A Cheap, Powerful, Customizable Way For Musicians To Use Facebook

MySpace is still seen by many as the reliable place to go to stream a musician’s music and find their tour dates. Facebook’s lack of an in-house app led to the proliferation of iLike, which is still going strong with 10 million monthly active users despite not always streaming full-length songs and limiting artist profiles to a stark white background. Since iLike was acquired by MySpace last year, two apps have emerged as top contenders to lead Facebook towards becoming a music destination — ReverbNation’s full-featured but less aesthetically-customizable MyBand, and the simpler, design-focused BandPage by RootMusic. Here’s our look at the latter.

Company Profile

BandPage is a free Page-focused application that allows musicians to create a tab for their Facebook Page where they can stream full songs for listening, post videos and tour dates, and publish to the feeds of people who like them. BandPage Plus, at an affordable $1.99 a month, gives customers deep appearance customization options. For comparison, a custom music tab can cost $3,000 to $5,000 to commission. In the four months since RootMusic launched the app, the company has signed up 20,000 bands and now has 3.15 million MAU. Notable clients include Tom Petty, Wu-Tang Clan, Jason Mraz, and Of Montreal.

RootMusic was founded by current CEO J Sider after six years of experience working with bands of all sizes while managing concert venues. Bands, fed up with the current solutions that weren’t practical for day to day to use, would constantly ask his advice on social media and distribution methods, he explains. He decided to “make a product that was a professional tool you could use if you were just starting out, or if you were hitting it big, at a price point where everyone could use it.” RootMusic consulted other digital music companies like imeem and SNOCAP to get advice on handling streaming and licensing issues.

The company seeks to provide solutions for bands on the internet as a whole, but has started with Facebook as that’s where the fans and the biggest inefficiency are. Sider says that the top priority of their medium-sized, engineer-heavy, San Francisco-based team is responding to customer feedback and implementing the features their users are asking for.

Editing Content and Appearance

To create a BandPage, go to the RootMusic’s website, log in using Facebook Connect, and give RootMusic access to your public information and email. Select which Page that you control you want edit, and you’ll be brought to the BandPage content editor. Your Page’s name is appended to “http://listn.to/” to give you a direct link to your BandPage. Your profile picture and any photos or videos you’ve uploaded to your Page are automatically imported,

RootMusic partners with SoundCloud to offer music hosting and streaming. You can upload songs you have the rights to in the editor, or upload them on SoundCloud and connect your account to your BandPage, causing the songs to appear in a list of available tracks. You can then drag them to one of your BandPage playlists, add cover art and a link to a digital music store, and select if you want the song to be freely downloadable. Playback is snappy, usually starting within 1.5 seconds, and song play counts combine both plays on your BandPage, and wherever the song is embedded on Facebook.

SonicLiving powers the tour dates section of your BandPage, auto-completing venue names, and allowing you to list a price and purchase link. The contact tab lets you display different contact email addresses, websites, phone numbers, or a link to message you on Facebook. At the bottom of the content editor users can set if fan posts will show up on the Page’s wall, and add Twitter and RSS feeds. Enabling the ArtistData add-on lets musicians sync the content they post to any other profiles they have around the web.