I'm currently working on my next cover, but I've recently released video collaboration for a Taylor Swift cover. While I'm still waiting for the song to be distributed and available for download, instead I've been promoting the instrumental version of the song. However, if you've noticed on social media, I've been telling people NOT to download the song. Let me explain.
Typically, I'll wait until a song is done and ready for download before I upload a video and let people know it's available. It takes some time to have cover songs be approved. This release is a little different. The new video for Taylor Swift's song came out right at the new year and I wanted to have something made immediately. Incidentally, I was in the middle of talking with Matt from Your Best Intent (who, so far, is amazing to work with) about a possible collaboration. When this opportunity came up, we both agreed it was a great song and started work on it right away. The result was amazing, as you can already tell.
Unfortunately, before this video, I have been having poor luck with finding other YouTubers to collaborate with and with Matt — as incredibly fast as he works — I had to unfortunately wait about a day or so in between messages since we live on opposite sides of the world (I'm Canadian and he's Australian). Because I was a bit rushed to work on this one, I had to take some sacrifices (like abandoning how I wanted to recreate the pitched vocals in the intro of the original song) and, despite listening to Matt's existing work, having to continue to work as usual on the instrumental and focus on that.
By the time Matt had sent me his vocal track, I had already sent a finished instrumental to Loudr (the digital distributor for my music) for release. I had realized I needed to make some small changes to the mixing of the instrumental to accommodate Matt's vocals. This was the first time I had to ask to recall a song but that's what I did. I reached out to Loudr, who's support team is really great and quick to respond. They recalled my submitted track and told me to just submit another one with the proper audio. So the song had never went out during this time and was still processing before being recalled.
When the new submission appeared through Loudr (then subsequently on iTunes and Amazon), I started promoting it in the description and annotations of the instrumental video as well as social networks. However, some days later, I noticed the track appear twice on my Loudr page. Both tracks seemed to be the same but under different album links. Obviously, I sent a follow-up email stating my confusion on it and requested the link I had already started to promote be the proper album. They, again, took down the duplicate album immediately.
The odd part is that under an artist management page on the site, I've noticed that I now had two albums for "Out of the Woods (Instrumental)" set as "recalled". Which is strange, because I still had an album showing up for sale. I thought (and still am thinking) that this is just more of a glitch as a result of taking down the duplicate release and didn't think much of it. Still, I sent an email stating my concern and, at this point, I hate that I keep having to bug the fine folks at Loudr for constant emails for one song.
In waiting for a response, I had also noticed that the song was also duplicated on iTunes and Amazon. I had got a response back saying that it will take time for other sites to process recalls, but that it should be resolved sometime later. As of writing this, the duplicate releases are now gone on both. However, the song is still not available on Spotify or Google Play and I'm concerned now that I have two "Out of the Woods (Instrumental)" albums that say "recalled" that it might not even show on those platforms or, worse yet, be removed from iTunes and Amazon altogether. Another concern of mine is that the one that is available might actually be the unfinished instrumental that was accidentally submitted too early. Since these are all samples for me, it's hard to tell.
But my biggest concern is selling someone a song that ends up being removed. Unfortunately, I'm stuck waiting for the process of copyright licenses and distribution to take affect when dealing with this stuff to immediately change any mistakes so the songs had been available as two separate songs for quite some time. I don't really have real statistics at this point that show if any sales were made on the song during that time. To make it up, I will at some point be making it clear to anyone who might have purchased the instrumental that was taken down a free cover song to compensate for the confusion and removal of the song (after provided proof of purchase).
The full cover is being processed right now and should be released everywhere (hopefully) soon, but I'm still not completely certain what has happened or is still happening to the instrumental at this point and it's preventing me from promoting it properly. That said, I WILL be working on another cover compilation album once I have 10 songs to put on it. Out of the Woods will be part of that and WILL be the version you hear in the video and is the one intended for release. Now, I'm not preventing anyone for buying the current instrumental release if you want it now, but I thought I would make this blog to clear out any confusion you might have had and to just be aware this was not how I intended to release the song. Hopefully I can prevent something like this in the future.
If you have any questions, leave a comment below or on any social sites you're following me on.