Digital Download Data

The other day I compiled some data on online digital downloads of my first CD. (I did this last year too…just updating…) This is data from companies that are actually selling my music online right now. I thought you might be interested to see which songs were most popular.

I was actually a bit surprised how it came out. I would have never guessed the top two were actually the top two. And “Mom Went Bungie Jumping” appears to be the leader by a mile. Take a look for yourself:

Mom Went Bungie Jumping: 169
Voices: 83
I Will Sing: 57
Sequoyah: 43
The Birches of Moscow: 39
My Brontosaurus Threw a Potluck: 35
Deep Blue Grey: 30
The Peace: 27
The Road Goes On: 26
Your Warm: 25
Sun is Gonna Show: 24
Song from the Spring: 19
These Rooms: 13

(numbers indicate the total times a song has been downloaded/streamed)

If you want to hear a clip, click here to go to playlist at iTunes with these songs in this same rank of popularity.

Of course, these numbers don’t reflect “free” downloads or streams from other websites, such as this one, or from places like MySpace. The truth is, my most popular download of all-time is “Prairie Chapel Road,” which has now been given away more than 3,000 times. And “The Natural Thing” has more than 1,000 streams on MySpace.

But I was curious to see what folks were buying, and so there you have it. Interesting…fascinating really…to see where folks are putting their money.

BTW, you might assume all this downloading has brought in serious cash for me, yes? You’d be wrong. Total amount I’ve been paid for all these digital downloads?

About $55 bucks.

I’ve said this before, but it bears repeating here….where you choose to buy your online music makes a huge difference to actual artists. And the major company that –far and away– leads the other digital media companies, in terms of being “artist friendly?”



Yep. That’s right.

Sure, I’m predisposed to like them. And yes, I’m totally biased in my view of their company. But facts is facts. iTunes is the most “artist friendly” major digital distributor. It’s not even close. They pay artists more than ten times per song than some of the other major retailers.

In fact, of the sales listed above, Apple’s iTunes accounts for a mere one-quarter of all the downloads, but a whopping three-quarters of the money paid out!

Which allows me to remind you, as the flight attendants say, “We know you have a choice when you buy online, so thank you for choosing iTunes.”

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Eric Folkerth is a minister, musician, author and blogger. He has been Senior Pastor of Northaven United Methodist Church in Dallas, Texas since 2001. During his tenure, church membership has grown almost 30 percent, and a completely new church facility (sanctuary and education building) has been constructed. Northaven is a leading progressive Christian congregation in the Southwest. Northaven is an eclectic collection of gay and straight families, artists, musicians, theater folks, academic theologians, lawyers and judges (go figure), socially conscious community activists, people who don't "check their brain at the door," and a wide array of others who either see it as their "last chance" inside the "institutional church," or their first trip back in decades. Eric is an avid blogger and published author.  Eric is also an award-winning singer-songwriter, who performs throughout Texas and the Southwest. He's an engaging live performer whose first CD was released in 2000. His songs have won honorable mention in both the Billboard and Great American song contests; and he's been a finalist in the 5th Street Festival and South Florida Folk Festival songwriter competitions. Eric is also a leader of Connections, a unique band comprised of United Methodist clergy and layfolk from throughout North Texas. Connections performs "cover shows" of artists like Dan Fogelberg, Chicago, Eagles, Doobie Brothers, Billy Joel, Stevie Wonder, James Taylor and others. Their shows draw crowds of between 300 and 1,000 fans, and they have raised more than $240,000 dollars for worthy charities. Eric has led or co-led hundreds of persons on mission trips around the globe, to places such as Mexico, Haiti, Russia, and Nepal. He has worked with lay persons to build ten homes, and one Community Center, in partnership with Habitat for Humanity of Dallas. He's a popular preacher, and often tackles challenging issues of social justice in his writings and sermons. His wife, Judge Dennise Garcia, is a State District Judge for Dallas, County. As judge of the 303rd Family District Court, she consistently gets high ratings from area lawyers, and was named "best judge" by The Dallas Observer. First elected in 2004, she was the first Latina ever elected to a county-wide bench in Dallas County. She was re-elected for a third term in 2010. They have the world's best daughter, Maria, and an incredible dog, Daisy. (As always, if you like this post, then "like" this on Facebook by clicking the box below, so others can see too...)

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