Episode 25: Brian Felsen of CDBaby
Air date: 9.21.2011
CDBaby is a beautiful anomaly. As the music industry has contracted and become a bastion of seemingly soulless corporate behemoths, the little website that founder Derek Sivers created in 1997 to start selling his music online has grown to handle CD sales and digital downloads for nearly 300,000 artists - and they did so by embodying a genuinely independent ethos. CDBaby is based on the notion that music and artists should come first - and this admirable position saw them grow while other industry stalwarts were collapsing like a house of cards. President Brian Felsen took over the helm in 2008 after Sivers sold CDBaby to the replication company DiscMakers. The CDBaby umbrella that Felsen wields also includes managing BookBaby and HostBaby. But Felsen is not just another suit - he is a working artist as well, having produced photographic art, poetry, plays and a documentary film.