Usync is an online resource which allows indie bands and artists to establish an online presence and distribute their music without the need to go through a major label.

The site was launched by in Australia in 2001 by Aussie band Gabriel’s Day, which had been overlooked by major labels yet still had a fanbase.

Essentially, Usync allows artists to bypass record labels and take control of the distribution of their music, tickets and merchandising – selling them directly to their fanbase.

Usync is extending this product to the UK, offering 150 ‘Backstage areas’ for UK bands, who will receive a free starter pack containing 1GB of bandwidth and 300MB of storage, as well as ongoing support.

It claims to differ from artist pages on social networks like Bebo and MySpace because it offers a better chance for bands to monetise their online presence, rather than waiting for a record deal.

Usync says that less than 15% of artists in the UK make enough money to make a living out of their talent, and most get just a 20% cut of the revenue earned from their music.

Usync makes its money by taking a 20% cut of any transaction made via the site, but says it doesn’t take a share of future earnings or have anything to do with the copyright on the artists’ recordings.

It is an interesting approach, and offers a valuable alternative to waiting for a record deal, allowing artists more control over their music and image.

Further reading:

Interview: Mark Clark, UK MD of GD Worldwide