Pittsburgh musicians can submit albums to Carnegie Library's STACKS platform through August | Music | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

Pittsburgh musicians can submit albums to Carnegie Library's STACKS platform through August

click to enlarge A selection of Pittsburgh musicians on Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh's STACKS service
A selection of Pittsburgh musicians on Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh's STACKS service
The debate about streaming services and how much they pay musicians has been a heated one. For artists, getting tons of streams on Spotify or Apple music may show interest in your music, but it doesn’t always translate to a nice paycheck.

The Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh sought to change that for local artists with STACKS, a music streaming service launched in 2019. The program offers musicians $200 for albums at least ten minutes long. For comparison, Spotify offers artists $0.003 and $0.0084 per stream.

If you’re a local musician, this year's program is now open for submissions through Fri., Aug. 6. 

Toby Greenwalt, CLP’s director of digital strategy and technology integration, describes STACKS as a continuation of the library's goal to "promote the individual achievement of our patrons while supporting the Pittsburgh music scene."


“Pittsburgh has always had a lively music scene, but changes in the industry have created many challenges for smaller musicians," Greenwalt told Pittsburgh City Paper in 2019. "We hope this platform will be one way to help these talented individuals thrive starting in their hometown.”

If you are a music fan, you can use your library card to stream previous albums from Pittsburgh musicians directly from the CLP website. 

STACKS was made in collaboration with the software company Rabble, using its MUSICat platform. Rabble works with libraries across the nation to build digital solutions and offer their communities a place to celebrate their rich music history while uplifting current artists.

The 2020 round of STACKS candidates — chosen by a jury including former City Paper music writer Jordan Snowden — features a long list of local musicians representing a wide array of genres, including hip hop, indie rock, and country music.

To submit to this year's program, you must be a Pittsburgh-based artist with a musical project released in the last five years. You must own the rights to your music and the album must be four songs or 10 minutes long.


Visit the STACKS website to submit and learn more.

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