A Look Back at 2016: TuneCore Artists in the Spotlight

December 27, 2016

2016 was a generally…interesting…year around the world. We saw a lot of changes, but one thing that remained constant was the talented artists within the TuneCore community’s ability to shine!

We couldn’t be more proud of 2016’s movers and shakers who continue to crush it in the world of independent music — proving you don’t need to be on a major label (or in some cases a label at all) to build an audience, get heard and get paid what they’re truly owed. So join us as we take a look at some of the standouts from around the industry over the past year!


TuneCore artists, songwriters and arrangers are making some serious waves in both the GRAMMY and Latin GRAMMY nomination pools this year. Check out some of the awesome noms received by independent artists from the TuneCore community and join us in congratulating them:

Best Urban Contemporary Album 
We Are King
Best New Artist
Chance The Rapper
Best Dance Recording
Sofi Tukker
Best Rap Performance
No Problem
Chance The Rapper Featuring Lil Wayne & 2 Chainz
Best Rap Song
No Problem
Chancelor Bennett, Dwayne Carter & Tauheed Epps, songwriters (Chance The Rapper Featuring Lil Wayne & 2 Chainz)
Best Rap Album
Coloring Book
Chance The Rapper
Best Latin Jazz Album
Madera Latino: A Latin Jazz Perspective On The Music Of Woody Shaw
Brian Lynch & Various Artists
Best Contemporary Blues Album
The Last Days of Oakland
Fantastic Negrito
Best Regional Roots Music Album
E Walea
Kalani Pe’a
Best Children’s Album
Recess Monkey
Best Musical Theater Album
The Color Purple
Label: Broadway Records
Fiddler On The Roof
Label: Broadway Records

TuneCore Artists On the Come-Up

While we don’t live-and-die by the almighty “Best Of” lists each year, we are always proud to see some of the great artists who distributed their releases using TuneCore show up on ’em!

Pigeons & Planes’ “Best New Artists of 2016”

– Kamaiyah
– Lil Yachty
– Starrah
– Kaiydo
– Maggie Rogers
– Jessie Reyez
– Saint JHN
– Twelve’Len

Pitchfork’s “Best of 2016”

– A Good Night in the Ghetto by Kamaiyah
– Telefone by Noname
– Coloring Book by Chance the Rapper
– We Are KING by KING
– The Sun’s Tirade by Isiah Rashad (Hip Hop)
– Honor Killed the Samuri by Ka (Hip Hop)

SXSW, TuneCore Presents, A3C, Brooklyn Hip Hop Fest, Mondo.NYC

2016 saw a continued effort to connect with artists on the ground at some of America’s most exciting music summits and conferences, including one curated by TuneCore:

Deap Vally performing at TuneCore's 2016 Austin Takeover

Deap Vally performing at TuneCore’s 2016 Austin Takeover


Director of Video Camille Moussard breaking down how to earn revenue on YouTube during "TuneCore Presents" in conjunction with Austin Music Foundation

Director of Video Camille Moussard breaking down how to earn revenue on YouTube during “TuneCore Presents” in conjunction with Austin Music Foundation



TuneCore holding it down in the Tidal Tent during the 2016 Brooklyn Hip Hop Festival



Sr. Director of Entertainment Relations Chris Mooney (far right) and Director of Marketing Mitch Wenger (far left) presenting/moderating “Under The Hood: Get Your Music Heard and Get Paid for Doing It” at Mondo.NYC 2016

Reeperbahn, The Great Escape, Indie Week, MusikMesse, MAMA

Not only did TuneCore launch new websites in Australia, Germany, France and Italy, we also made our presence known at some of the most prominent music industry events in Canada and across Europe:


TuneCore UK Brand Manager Sam Taylor on stage during DIY Day at Great Escape 2016


International VP Marie-Anne Roberts, CEO Scott Ackerman, and Germany Brand Manager Stine Muehle at Reeperbahn 2016

International VP Marie-Anne Roberts, CEO Scott Ackerman, and Germany Brand Manager Stine Muehle at Reeperbahn 2016


TuneCore's Meghna Rajaram and Brittany Holloway at Indie Week 2016

TuneCore’s Meghna Rajaram and Brittany Holloway at Indie Week 2016

Giving Back in 2016

2016 was year for TuneCore to get involved with some amazing music-related non-profit organizations and serve as the distribution platform for some very thoughtful charity-based releases:

  • Songs Of Love Foundation – Based in Queens, the Songs of Love Foundation matches independent songwriters with children and teens in difficult medical, physical and emotional situations, brightening their world with personalized songs about them. TuneCore has partnered with S.O.L. to become their official digital distributor. Read more about Songs of Love here.
  • Broadway For Orlando – After the tragic shooting that took place in the Pulse nightclub of Orlando, Broadway Records headed up a charitable initiative which organized the recording of Burt Bacharach’s classic “What The World Needs Now” sung by an all-star Broadway cast. 100% of the proceeds from this recording went to the GLBT Community Center of Central Florida. TuneCore was honored to be tapped as a distribution partner. Find Broadway For Orlando on iTunes here.
  • Broadway Kids Against Bullying – Similar to the above initiative,  Broadway Records coordinated voices from some of the finest young talent on Broadway to perform and release “I Have a Voice”, an effort to stand-up against bullying. All profits from the release go to NoBully.org, and you can find it on iTunes here.
  • The “Play It Forward” Campaign – In the wake of the Paris terrorist attacks of December in 2015, the band in the middle of it all, Eagles of Death Metal, began an on-going initiative that invited artists from Kings of Leon to Jimmy Eat World to cover their song “I Love You All The Time”, with 100% of the revenue generated going to co-founder Joshua Homme’s nonprofit “Sweet Stuff”. Read more about the Play It Forward campaign here.
  • Notes For Notes – Notes for Notes is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that designs, equips, and staffs after-school recording studios inside Boys & Girls Clubs offering youth the opportunity to explore, create, and record music for free. TuneCore has partnered up with the organization to offer education around distribution, publishing and general music industry tips for young, aspiring artists.

So cheers to the end of 2016! We’ll be resting up and getting ready for an exciting 2017 and we hope you join us. Happy New Year!

Tags: 2016 A3C best of 2016 featured featuring grammys indie indie week latin grammys recap reeperbahn SXSW tunecore