Music business

TikTok’s partner for its new SoundOn distribution service is… TuneCore

Last Wednesday (March 8), we learned that TikTok had officially entered the music distribution business with a new service called SoundOn.

TikTok’s distribution service allows artists to upload their music directly to TikTok and RESSO, and it can also distribute artists’ music to platforms like Spotify and Apple Music.

The platform is live in the UK, US, Brazil and Indonesia.

TikTok has now confirmed to MBW that Believe-owned digital distribution platform TuneCore has been chosen as the distribution partner for SoundOn.

In short, this means that artists who upload their music to TikTok SoundOn will then see that music distributed to other platforms (Spotify, Apple Music, etc.) via TuneCore.

TuneCore has been the service’s distribution partner, we’re told, since SoundOn quietly launched as a beta in September last year.

Before SoundOn existed, TikTok had a different distribution partner: independent artist distribution platform UnitedMasters, which struck a deal with TikTok in August 2020.

That deal is no longer in place, we’re told, but UnitedMasters possesses was chosen as one of TikTok’s six “certified sound partners”.

As revealed in October, this “Sound Partner” deal allows brands to leverage music distributed by UnitedMasters for mini-syncs on the TikTok platform.

Other TikTok Sound partners include Stockholm-based music production house Epidemic Sound and Los Angeles-based B2B music licensing marketplace Songtradr.

TikTok said last week that its new SoundOn service pays 100% royalties to music creators in the first year and 90% thereafter and provides a range of promotional and support tools.

According to SoundOn FAQsartists will be able to “get 100% royalties for an unlimited time” for In-Bytedance platforms including TikTok and Resso.

TuneCore, meanwhile, currently offers three different options for its direct customers, including pay-per-single or per-album, or download on social platforms only.

The Social Platforms option, launched by TuneCore in November 2021, has no upfront cost. However, TuneCore will participate in what it calls a “small revenue share” generated by these tracks on social platforms.


In September, TikTok’s global head of music, Ole Obermann, told MBW: “In short, we’re making it easier for [independent artists] to put their music on TikTok, and we’re going to work with them to better understand how to reach their audience on TikTok.

He added, “Through SoundOn, we will organize the ecosystem of unsigned artists in a way that does not exist today and has never existed before.

“I think it will make it easier for artists to find their fans. And then for labels and publishers to find those artists. the [industry’s] I think the whole A&R process will become more efficient with this.The music industry around the world