Grimes and BloodPop’s manager launches app to help artists understand record deals

Daouda Leonard's free CreateOS.app is live now

The manager of Grimes and BloodPop, Daouda Leonard, has founded an app that helps employees and artists in the music industry understand the workings of record deals.

CreateOS.app, which was launched by Leonard yesterday (September 24) is a free resource that simulates deals for “artists, managers and industry executives who want more transparency in understanding how the finances of deals work”.

A statement on the CreateOS website reads: “Many artists sign record deals they don’t fully understand. We’ve created a deal simulator to help artists, managers, and labels model deal options and forecast profits. It’s a rough guide to better understand the finances of how record deals work.”

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As The Line Of Best Fit notes, the app provides a breakdown for three deals including royalty, net profit and distribution. There’s an option for users to include the split between artists and label, the advance amount, and the recording and marketing costs.

After the figures are inputted by the artist/manager/label, the app works out how many streams the act would need to pay back the advance before seeing a profit.

The news comes as Kanye West continues his campaign to overhaul what he says is a “broken” system that has created “too wide” a gap between major label profit and artist profit.

Kanye West
Kanye West CREDIT: Getty Images

The rapper has set out a plan to “free all artists by any means necessary” from complex, airtight deals that makes it all but impossible to own their music.

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“Everyone knows this is a broken system that needs to be fixed,” said West. “Currently, artists take advances to make records and yet when they repay those advances the record company still owns the records. Imagine a bank lending you money to buy a house and then when you’ve repaid that mortgage, them telling you they still own it.”

A Twitter thread on the CreateOS app by journalist Cheri Hu delves into West’s sixth album deal. Hu revealed that with “no marketing costs, Ye still needs to generate 3.2B streams to make $1 [79p] in royalties”.

Grimes said of CreateOS.app: “These kind of things will make music less hierarchical and more artist friendly”, while Questlove also threw support behind the new resource, saying: “Everything needs to be rebuilt from scratch”.

CreateOS.app is now live now at dealsim.createos.app.

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