Derek Sivers

Yes, my site is plain on purpose. You’ll see this is a common theme: wanting no more than I need.

Me in 10 seconds

I’ve been a musician, producer, circus performer, entrepreneur, TED speaker, and book publisher.

I started CDBaby and HostBaby long ago. My short audio/book about it tells you everything I learned while starting, growing, and selling the business.

INTJ, minimalist, solitary socialite, and a very slow thinker. I love finding a different point of view.

California native. I now live in New Zealand and Singapore.

Me in 10 minutes?

See my “about” page.

What am I doing now?

See my “now” page.

Contact me?

See why you should, though read my frequently asked questions, first.


Anything You Want (2011)
40 lessons for a new kind of entrepreneur: my tales of starting, building, and selling CD Baby
Your Music and People (2018)
a philosophy for musicians (and normal people) of getting your work to the world by being creative, considerate, resourceful, descriptive, focused, and connected
Hell Yeah or No (2018)
a collection of thoughts around re-defining yourself, changing focus, and saying yes to less
How to Live (2018)
radically different approaches to life, in succinct directives

Newest Articles see all

Popular Articles see all

My private email list

If you want the announcements and opportunities that I never post publicly, get on my private email list, here:

Projects see all projects

Book Notes
detailed notes from the last 250+ books I’ve read
Now Now Now
a collection of sites that have a “what I’m doing now” page
inspiring quotes about music, translated into Español, Français, Deutsch, Italiano, Português, Русский, العربية, 日本語, and 中文


3 short talks from the TED Conference.
Anything You Want
7 short animations from my book “Anything You Want”.
Uncommon Sense
Entrepreneur lessons learned from starting, building, and selling CD Baby.
Conference Presentations
Talks from other conferences, all subjects.


Through 2015, I got personal and poured my heart into 40 hours of interviews.

Each one has an MP3 you can download, or a transcript if you prefer to read.

Photos (click for big)

Derek Sivers Derek Sivers Derek Sivers Derek Sivers

Tweets see all tweets

August 6
You don't need confidence, just contribution.
August 2
My definition of success: (thanks to Grant Piros for putting it succinctly)
July 25
New notes on four great books: - especially “Story of Philosophy” and “Courage to be Disliked”.
June 18
Imagining a band: John Bonham, Jaco Pastorius, Bill Evans, Michael Hedges, and Björk, produced by Brian Eno.
June 7
Unlearning :
April 17
New books added to my book notes collection, plus a search box. Total of 250 books now. See new FAQ:

( is a nice mirror of my posts.)