All has been a little quiet over the weekend while I battle my latest case of Swine Flu. Anyway, news is this morning that my old chums at eMusic – famed for their non-relationship with the major labels – have finally reached an agreement with SonyBMG.
The background to the story is simple. When founded 11 years ago, eMusic refused to put DRM on the music they sold. This, up until very recently when iTunes followed suit, was always a taboo subject with the major labels who subsequently refused to licence their music to the service.
Since then, eMusic has carved itself out to be the biggest (and best) legal independent music resource online. They were amongst the first to introduce a monthly subscription fee and have gone from strength-to-strength whilst other services have come and gone. By the end of last year, they had sold over 250 million tracks – a phenomenal amount of independent music (and made even better taking into account the fact that Domino don’t have any artists on the service).
The deal isn’t quite as succinct as you’d hope for though, according to the New York Times, the deal will only cover tracks that are more than two years old, and that eMusic will “slightly raise prices and reduce the number of downloads for some of its monthly plans” in return.
eMusic boss Danny Stein continues to say that the price hike is supported by its existing indie labels, and I guess that’s the best we can hope for. Let’s just hope this deal is as beneficial to the vast number of independent artists on eMusic as it should be.
As an aside, you can get 35 FREE tracks from eMusic and support FFP by clicking here.