Independent artist site GarageBand is diving headfirst into podcasting, with the company now offering a podcast publishing kit. The new "Podcast Studio" will allow artists and music fans to upload, mix and publish material into the podcast format. It also allows artists to authorize distribution of their music through podcasting, allowing promotion through the time-shifted radio format. That will help to enhance the GarageBand model, which focuses on organic success stories through audience voting and participation.
The podcasting phenomenon keeps growing, with GarageBand the latest to jump on board. While spoken word podcasting defines a large percentage of the category, music-focused podcasts are also gaining steam. Razor & Tie is one notable entrant, with the New York-based indie label now promoting its artists through the format. Unsigned artists can also use podcasting in a similar manner, gaining awareness by pushing their content onto as many iPods as possible. But major labels are less enthusiastic about the trend, and sites like MySpace are staying on the sidelines amidst an unclear legal environment. Meanwhile, an upcoming podcasting push from Apple will broaden the concept considerably, potentially pushing licensing issues to the forefront.