“If all of your fans bought through iTunes rather than buying CDs at the record store you’d be looking at an overall reduction in income of 85%!”
Weird Al Yankovic Says Digital Is a Raw Deal For Some Artists:
“I am extremely grateful for your support, no matter which format you choose to legally obtain my music in, so you should do whatever makes the most sense for you personally. But since you ASKED… I actually do get significantly more money from CD sales, as opposed to downloads. This is the one thing about my renegotiated record contract that never made much sense to me. It costs the label NOTHING for somebody to download an album (no manufacturing costs, shipping, or really any overhead of any kind) and yet the artist (me) winds up making less from it. Go figure.“
Apple pays the labels $0.65 (some say its as high as $0.80) of the $0.99 cents paid for your song. So, for an album with the average 12 songs, Apple takes in $11.88. Apple sends the label $7.80 — 35%. The record label takes that $7.80.
…you could expect something like $45 of each thousand songs sold to be paid to you in royalties. That’s around 4% of the amount paid to Apple for your work, and around 5.7% of what was paid to the label.