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Founded1994; 29 years ago (1994) in Encino, California
FounderMarc Geiger, Keith Yokomoto, Steve Rennie, Don Muller
United States
Key people
James Graf (CEO)
Augustine Wong (President)

ARTISTdirect is an American online digital media entertainment company.


Founded in 1996, it owns several websites, including and These websites are a group of affiliate websites offering multimedia content, music news and information, communities organized around shared music interests, music-related specialty commerce and digital music services.

Artistdirect began as an online music retailer and distribution company. It hosted the Ultimate Band List (UBL), a database with information on over 600,000 artists, concerts, record labels, and other music-related resources.[1] In 1997, it partnered with the band Blink-182 to create, an online store and community site for fans of the music and fashion of cutting-edge Alternative rock, punk, metal, and hard rock artists.[1] It featured merchandise from various brands including Hurley, Dickies, and Ben Sherman. In the early 2000s Artistdirect combined the database of the Ultimate Band List and online store with free audio and video streams, music news, album reviews, and movie trailers.[citation needed]

In 2006, Artistdirect re-launched the site to focus on independent and unsigned bands, and helping them to be "discovered".[2][failed verification] According to Media Metrix, the Artistdirect Network averages 12.4 million unique hits.[3][failed verification]

In 2005 Artistdirect acquired MediaDefender, a company with a 90% share of the market for protecting against online copyright infringement.[4]

In 2009, Artistdirect acquired MediaSentry, another company that focuses on battling online copyright infringement.[5] The company will operate with two divisions, one for its copyright protection products, and another for its music-related web sites.[citation needed]

In August 2009, the company filed a "Form 15" with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission, under which it will "go dark" and cease to make public its financial information. The company shares will also cease trading on the major stock exchanges.[6]

In March 2015, the business of ARTISTdirect was acquired by PSI Capital, Inc.[citation needed]


In August 2002, Marc Geiger launched his own iMUSIC label as a separate entity to ARTISTdirect Records but still under the Artistdirect umbrella.[7] It also relied on BMG distribution and on Ted Field's ADR marketing and promotion staff.[citation needed]

The basic idea of iMUSIC was to enter into label and distribution partnerships with long established artists (with sizable fan-bases) who no longer had major label deals.[citation needed]

ARTISTdirect Online Music Awards[edit]

In 1999, they created the ARTISTdirect Online Music Awards. With 20 categories, the winners were selected by viewers via online. The first ever ceremony was held at House of Blues having performances of No Doubt, Cypress Hill and Chris Isaak among others. Madonna, Eminem, The Beatles and Ricky Martin were among the first winners.[8] The following edition in 2000, had expanded their categories in rock, pop, urban/hip hop and electronica.[9]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b About Us - Free Music Download, MP3 Music, Music Chat, Music Video, Music CD, ARTISTdirect Network
  2. ^
  3. ^ Yahoo Finance[permanent dead link]
  4. ^ Photo Release - Jonathan Dolgen Joins ARTISTdirect, Inc. as Senior Consultant
  5. ^ "ARTISTdirect Announces Acquisition of MediaSentry". Reuters (Press release). Global Newswire. April 2, 2009. Archived from the original on September 1, 2009. Retrieved June 30, 2017.
  6. ^ Reuters
  7. ^ "iMUSIC: A New Direction for the Music Business; Cutting-Edge Label Offers Better Economics". January 2, 2010.
  8. ^ VanHorn, Teri (October 8, 1999). "Offspring, Korn, Madonna Win Online Music Awards". MTV.
  9. ^ "Voting results". Artistdirect. Archived from the original on April 22, 2001. Retrieved March 10, 2023.

External links[edit]