The Island Def Jam Music Group, a division of Universal Music Group, is embarking on a new strategy to connect with consumers instantly, making songs available for purchase online to fans as soon as they hit the radio airwaves. The songs will be available for purchase as digital downloads to consumers through a host of leading retail and music Web sites, as well as legitimate subscription services that have licensing agreements with Universal Music Group. Island Def Jam is amongst the first labels in the industry to offer content online as early as the radio impact date and plans to do so throughout 2003. The downloads are burnable to CD and transferable to secure portable devices.
The initiative kicked off on January 7 when American Hi-Fi's track "The Art of Losing," debuts at radio, and will then be exclusively available to consumers for purchase online in the U.S. for 99 cents, weeks before the album, The Art of Losing (Island Records), is released on February 25. A complete list of those sites selling UMG a la carte downloads is posted at http://www.umusic.com/newformats/retailers. The digital tracks will also be available for purchase on several subscription services, Listen.com, MusicNet and Pressplay.
"Our new strategy, to provide consumers with the ability to purchase Island Def Jam music online the day it hits radio, provides music fans with an immediate opportunity to own music prior to album release dates. It's a winning situation for the consumer, Island Def Jam and retail — the consumer gets an early experience of artists' new singles and the industry benefits by assessing consumer reactions as they purchase the tracks online," said Larry Mattera, vice president, New Media, The Island Def Jam Music Group.