In this episode of The Label Machine Podcast, Nick chats with Brian 'Z' Zisook, from Audiomack.

Brian Zisook, also known as Z, is the EVP of Global Operations and Head of Artist and Label Services at Audiomack. Audiomack, a leading music streaming platform, has become the number one choice in 17 countries, supporting new and emerging artists. In this insightful episode, Z shared his journey in the music industry and provided valuable advice on artist growth and monetization.

Z's Journey in the Music Industry

Brian Zisook's entry into the music industry is a fascinating story. Initially passionate about sports, a knee injury shifted his focus to public speaking, television, and debate. This change led him to pursue a degree in mass communications and radio broadcasting, hosting a radio program during his college years. After a brief stint in radio, he co-founded DJ Booth, an influential hip-hop website, which eventually paved the way for Audiomack.

The Birth of Audiomack

Audiomack was created to provide a better platform for artists to share their music. Unlike other file-sharing services that were riddled with pop-up ads and offered no data tracking, DJ Booth started hosting mixtapes and albums, providing a dedicated link and press coverage for artists. However, realizing their limitations, they launched Audiomack in 2012 with a simple yet revolutionary idea: free, unlimited uploads with no hidden costs for artists.

What Sets Audiomack Apart

Audiomack stands out from other platforms like SoundCloud by offering a robust suite of free creator tools. These tools include a creator dashboard, analytics access, and the ability to send messages to followers. All these features are available without any subscription fees. Additionally, Audiomack focuses on human curation rather than solely relying on algorithms, offering a more personalized and engaging listening experience.

Success in the Afrobeat Community

Audiomack's success in the Afrobeat community is noteworthy. With a significant presence in Nigeria and Ghana, the platform has become a go-to for Afrobeat music, supporting its growth globally. Z highlighted that Audiomack’s adaptability to local market needs and on-the-ground presence in Africa has been instrumental in this success.

Monetization Options for Artists

For independent artists looking to grow their fanbase and monetize their music, Audiomack offers two primary paths: through one of their licensed content partners or directly via the Audiomack Monetization Program (AMP). The AMP allows artists to generate royalties directly from Audiomack, making it an excellent option for those at the very early stages of their career.

Marketing Advice for Emerging Artists

Z shared valuable advice on how to spend a $3,000 marketing budget for a non-performing artist with about 10,000 monthly Spotify listeners and a combined social media following of 25,000. His recommendations included investing in high-quality publicity photos and artwork, running hyper-targeted ad campaigns on Instagram and YouTube, and creating organic, authentic short-form video content.

The Role of AI in Music

The discussion also touched on the impact of AI on music creation and consumption. While AI can aid in the creative process and extend artists’ careers, Z emphasized the importance of maintaining a human connection in music.

Advice for Indie Labels and New Artists

For indie labels and artists new to Audiomack, Z encouraged them to explore the platform and take advantage of its extensive support for independent and emerging artists. He also mentioned exciting future developments for Audiomack, including new creator tools and a label services division to provide guidance and support to artists navigating the distribution market landscape.


In this episode, Brian Zisook, aka Z, shared invaluable insights into Audiomack’s unique offerings and the platform's dedication to supporting new and emerging artists. With its focus on free, unlimited uploads and a range of creator tools, Audiomack stands out as a powerful ally for independent artists. As the music industry continues to evolve, Audiomack’s innovative approach and commitment to artist development make it an essential platform for anyone looking to grow their fanbase and monetize their music.

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