Unitedmasters Review: Can You Make Money?

Is UnitedMasters worth it? Can you make money from royalties? We answer these questions and more.

UnitedMasters is a music distribution startup created by Steve Stoute, who was a music executive at Interscope A&M Records (owned by Universal Music Group).

In 2017, Stoute received $70 million from investors such as Alphabet Inc. and Andreessen Horowitz to launch UnitedMasters, a music venture.

UnitedMasters Pros and Cons

There are several alternatives to United Masters such as Distrokid, Tunecore, CDBaby and Amuse.

But it seems that UnitedMasters is more geared to hip-hop and rappers so if that's important to you, it's a good option.


  • Easy account setup
  • Upload songs by texting or using their app
  • Good analytics and insights
  • Distribution for your music on all music platforms
  • Keep 100% of royalties (for paid users)

Some artists love the service and the convenience of being able upload songs from their phones is worth it.


  • 10% royalty split for non-paying account is expensive
  • Some artists complain that payment is delayed

Is UnitedMasters Worth it?

UnitedMasters (UM) makes it easier to distribute your music to Spotify, Apple Music and Amazon Music. Based on the alternatives, it's definitely at the top of the list.

UM does promote that you keep all your masters but depending on the plan you choose, you will pay out some of your royalties to UnitedMasters.

The most common complaints we've seen involve slower payouts, issues uploading music, and some app features not working.

Overall, it's a good service but you do need to track your streams and make sure you're getting paid out the right amount.

How Much Does UnitedMasters Cost?

UnitedMasters pricing is affordable but not as competitive when compared to the alternatives.

Based on a plan that offers unlimited uploads to the major music streaming services, we compared the pricing below:

  • UnitedMasters - $59.99/year
  • DistroKid - $22.99/year
  • TuneCore - $14.99/year


Can You Make Money From UnitedMasters?

The way UnitedMasters works is that they collect the money you make through music streaming services such as Spotify and they pay you out after you hit a minimum amount.

If you are on the Select plan, you can cash out anytime as long as the balance exceeds the payment processing fees.

If you are NOT on the Select plan, you can cash out when your account balance hits $50.

Is Distrokid Better Than United Masters?

DistroKid is a great distributor and some artists will prefer it over UnitedMasters.

But if you prefer to use a modern mobile app and don't mind paying a little more, UnitedMasters might be a better fit.

It won't hurt to try all the platform out and see which is better for you. They all offer a free option so you won't have to pay to try them out.

Does UnitedMasters Promote Your Music?

Don't expect UnitedMasters to promote your music heavy on their website or social platforms. They only promote larger artists who they have signed some type of deal with.

It's up to you as an independent artist to promote your music to a new fanbase. Fans want to get to know you as a person, so don' t outsource this phase of converting fans.

How Much Does UnitedMasters Pay Artists?

UnitedMasters pays out your earned royalties less the fees that they charge.

Because they offer two different plans, you have the option to either stick with the free plan and pay 10% of your royalties to UM or pay $59.99 a year and keep all your royalties.

Payments are processed when the streaming services calculate your earnings and remit to UnitedMasters.

Most artists will not earn a lot from their songs unless they have hundreds of thousands of streams or more. Expect a small check if you're just starting out.

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