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Live-music firm Sofar Sounds has been facing some criticism in recent months around how it pays artists and its volunteers alike. Now the company is responding in some depth, with a blog post explaining “how money works at a Sofar show”.

Its publication comes ahead of some changes to the company’s model set for February, including to artist compensation at its bigger shows.

“The average net income split between artists and Sofar is currently 63/37, with 63% of the net show income going to the artists. Our goal is to move from today’s 63/37 average profit split for our standard show format (3 artists and 20-25 minute sets) to 70/30 across Sofar-operated cities, in favour of the artist,” explained Sofar.

The post goes on to break down the revenues and costs of an average concert, with Sofar-operated shows averaging 63 ticket-buying guests paying an average of $19.52 each to attend. After costs, the average net income of these shows is $476, with $100 going to each of the three artists, and $176 to Sofar.

From February, larger shows will see artists earn more than $100, with Sofar also promising to create an artist advisory group “to help make sure we’re focused on the right features and improvements”. This kind of openness is welcome, a good, un-defensive first step in responding to the recent criticism.

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Music Ally's Head of Insight

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