Notes From the Underground is an interesting article written by a subway musician about his experiences. His list of three suggestions for musicians are: 1. Drop the price of CDs, 2. Branch out and 3. Embrace file-sharing. I more or less agree with all of those and I think have tried to do them all, so hooray, merit points for me. (I still find mostly gay porn when I search for 'brad sucks' on Kazaa or Shareaza though.)
A comment on point #1: after selling a lot of CDs myself at his recommended price of $5, I'm not sure how important that was in selling the CDs. I did it because I just wanted my music out there and realized I could sell my CD at $5 with shipping included and not lose money. I think that's what they call "desperation".
I wish I had a way to know how my CD would have sold if it was $6 or $10 or $20. If I ask, most people deny that they would have paid a penny more, obviously because they'd rather get it for $5 - and I can't blame them. It'd be even better if they could get it for $2.50 or a shiny nickel, but what people want to pay for things and what they actually cost aren't usually the same numbers an economy has told me.
Anyhow, I don't really have a point other than to say after my experiences I'm not convinced the price is all that important. Regular people (ie. non-musicians and other people who don't care about the RIAA) didn't seem too wowed by my $5 price. I was hoping they'd be all "OH MY GOD, FIVE DOLLARS WITH SHIPPING INCLUDED, HOW COULD I *NOT* BUY THIS??" but that hasn't happened much. At times I've gotten the impression that the unusually low price makes them worried they're getting tricked somehow, but the confusion makes it easier to subdue and rob them though, so I guess it all works out.