CD Baby

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CD Baby, Inc.
Available inEnglish, Spanish, Portuguese
FoundedMarch 10, 1998; 26 years ago (1998-03-10)[1]
Woodstock, New York, U.S.
HeadquartersPortland, Oregon, U.S.
Area servedWorldwide
Founder(s)Derek Sivers
Key peopleGideon Joseph - Artist
IndustryDigital distribution, music publisher record label
ProductsDigital distribution, Record Label
ParentAVL Digital Group (Downtown)
SubsidiariesAudio and Video Labs, Inc. (Soundrop)

CD Baby, Inc. is a Portland, Oregon[2] based online distributor of independent music. The company was described as an "anti-label" by its parent company's Chief Operating Officer Tracy Maddux.[3] It was established in 1998 and offered distribution for artists in physical and online format, however it discontinued the physical media service and went digital only in June 2023.

In 2018, CD Baby was one of the three companies with preferred partner status with Apple Music.[4] It was home to more than 650,000 artists and nine million tracks that were made available to over 100 digital services and platforms around the globe as of May 2019.[2]


CD Baby was founded in 1998 by Derek Sivers during the dot-com craze.[5]

In 2000, it moved to Portland, Oregon, where they remain headquartered today. In 2004, CD Baby began offering a digital music distribution and became an early partner of iTunes.[6]

In August 2008, Disc Makers, a CD and DVD manufacturer, announced that they had bought CD Baby (and Host Baby) for 22 million dollars following a seven-year partnership between the two companies.[7]

In 2013, CD Baby Pro Publishing was launched as an add-on that assists independent songwriters in administering their composition rights and collecting global publishing royalties. The service is now available to songwriters in more than 70 countries and territories.[8]

In March 2019, Disc Makers sold CD Baby (as part of the AVL Digital Group) to Downtown for $200 million. AVL's physical product divisions, Disc Makers, BookBaby, and Merchly, were acquired in a separate transaction by the Disc Makers executive team as part of the newly formed DIY Media Group.[9]

On March 31, 2020, CD Baby ceased its retail sales.[5]

CD Baby offered fulfillment services for artists who sold physical media through outlets such as Amazon Marketplace and Alliance, but it discontinued this service in June 2023 and will continue as online distribution only.[10][11]


Between its opening in 1998 to 2018, the company reports it had paid out $600 million over the two decades to artists.[12] In addition to the services the firm offers under its own name, CD Baby also now owns and operates HearNow,, Illustrated Sound Network, and HostBaby.[13] HostBaby closed in 2019.[14]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ " WHOIS, DNS, & Domain Info - DomainTools". WHOIS. Archived from the original on June 6, 2021. Retrieved December 2, 2016.
  2. ^ a b "CD Baby Expands Operations to London, Hires Rich Orchard & Steve Cusack". Billboard. June 25, 2018. Retrieved July 1, 2023.
  3. ^ Rohter, Larry (August 12, 2014). "CD Baby, a Company for the Niche Musician". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Archived from the original on June 5, 2021. Retrieved May 9, 2019.
  4. ^ "Apple names The Orchard, Kontor and CD Baby 'Preferred Plus' music distributors as part of new program". Music Business Worldwide. November 13, 2018. Archived from the original on May 17, 2021. Retrieved May 9, 2019.
  5. ^ a b Shadel, JD (August 23, 2020). "CD Baby's creative culture proves to be pandemic-proof: Top Workplaces 2020". Oregonlive. Retrieved November 4, 2022.
  6. ^ "Indie artist payments from CD Baby increase 33% in 2017, and other numbers you'll want to see [INFOGRAPHIC]". DIY Musician Blog. March 6, 2018. Archived from the original on May 9, 2019. Retrieved May 9, 2019.
  7. ^ "CD Baby sold to Disc Makers - news, torrent, wikipedia, free MP3, download, lyrics". Archived from the original on August 13, 2008. Retrieved August 10, 2008.
  8. ^ "CD Baby now publishes over a million songs - and says it's 'helping solve the industry's publishing problem one songwriter at a time'". Music Business Worldwide. August 15, 2018. Archived from the original on June 5, 2021. Retrieved May 9, 2019.
  9. ^ "Downtown buys CD Baby owner for $200m". Music Business Worldwide. March 27, 2019. Archived from the original on May 17, 2021. Retrieved June 7, 2019.
  10. ^ Purdy, Kevin (May 23, 2023). "End of an era: CD Baby stops distributing artists' CDs, vinyl, and other goods". Ars Technica. Retrieved July 2, 2023.
  11. ^ "CD Baby ends distribution of vinyl and CDs to focus on streaming". Music Business Worldwide. May 24, 2023. Retrieved July 2, 2023.
  12. ^ "CD Baby, Now In Its 20th Year, Says It Paid Out $80M to Indie Artists in 2017". Billboard. March 6, 2018. Archived from the original on June 5, 2021. Retrieved May 9, 2019.
  13. ^ "Tools & Resources To Promote Your Music - Music Promotion". CD Baby. Archived from the original on May 20, 2022. Retrieved May 9, 2019.
  14. ^ Silva, Marsha (August 18, 2019). "Bandzoogle Takes Over Artist Page Hosting for CD Baby as 'HostBaby' Gets Transitioned". Digital Music News. Archived from the original on June 5, 2021. Retrieved November 9, 2019.

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