The Beatles are going digital – though not (yet) through any online music service, instead selected music from the band will be made available in Rock Band.
Apple Corp. is expected to announce the move – which we consider could be the thin end of a wedge suggesting deployment of a broader digital strategy by the band – at 2pm today.
The move means music from the band will be made available to Rock Band 2 (set to ship November 21) players on a paid for download basis. It’s significant because it represents one of the earliest digital avatars on the part of arguably the most seminal UK act.
Activision plans to triple the quantity of Guitar Hero titles and associated products it produces by 2010, driving a boost to music sales, the company said this week.
The news came as music to the ears of Universal Music president and chief operating officer, Zach Horowitz, who attended an Activision gathering to tell staff and media that song downloads included within Guitar Hero titles saw real-world sales climb on average 200-300% – Weezer’s ‘My Name Is Jonas’ saw sales climb 1,000% as a result of inclusion within Guitar Hero III, he said.
Aiming to create more titles, Activision acquired music specialist and B-Boy developer FreeStyleGames last month. Its new unit is already developing new Guitar Hero content, a report explains.
This is interesting as it is the first time a major act has released a single through a computer game. The Smashing Pumpkins have sold over 30 million albums across the band’s career. The song will be made available in other formats following its appearance within Guitar Hero.
The new track will be bundled with two other rocking Smashing Pumpkins hits, “1979” and “The Everlasting Gaze,”. Continue reading →
Warner Music Group may keep some music from some artists back from the iTunes Store, and appears to be playing hardball, suggesting it may withdraw permission for inclusion of some of its catalogue within smash-hit console games, Rock Band and Guitar Hero.
Rolling Stone reports the success of Kid Rock’s ‘Rock N Roll Jesus’ album, which has spawned a smash hit single, ‘All Summer Long’, and isn’t available on iTunes or through any other digital music service. Despite not being available in digital form from services like iTunes, the album has already sold 1.3 million copies.
“It’s definitely interesting that he’s the only artist that’s not available on iTunes with a monster hit right now, and we’re seeing that kind of a growth,” Livia Tortella, general manager of Atlantic told Rolling Stone.
Activision may introduce its own Guitar Hero-branded iTunes style digital music store to compete with iTunes warns company boss Bobby Kotick.
Speaking to the Financial Times he said: “I don’t think there have been a lot of credible alternatives to iTunes, but Guitar Hero certainly has that potential,” he says. The latest version of the game offers players in-game access to a music store that sells tracks gamers can use within the game, though these can’t be played on computers or digital music players…yet…
Activision is also understood to be competing with MTV Games for a deal with The Beatles management to bring out a guitar-based game featuring Beatles’ songs.