Friday, September 5, 2008

The ever-evolving channels of distribution

Last month Sonic Youth released a 'greatest hits' CD (well, sort of - the songs are selected by Radiohead, Catherine Keener, Eddie Vedder, The Flaming Lips, etc.) called Hits are for Squares. It is only available at Starbucks. AC/DC's first studio album in 8 years is available next month, but only at Walmart. Christina Aguilera's greatest hits package, out in November, will only be available at Target stores. The Smashing Pumpkins announced today that their next single will debut on November 14th, on Guitar Hero (Playstation 3, Xbox 360 and Nintendo Wii).

This week also saw the announcement that Michael Moore will be releasing his next film, Slacker Uprising, on the web, as a free download. The film looks to share more in common with his second film, The Big One, than it does his hits Bowling for Columbine, Sicko and Fahrenheit 911 (the top selling documentary of all time). The film cost two million dollars to make, and will be released September 23rd.

1 comment:

Westcoast Walker said...

The Guitar Hero phenomena is giving "classic rock" a whole new lease on life. It is amazing how many young teens I see walking around with AC/DC, Zeppelin, Doors shirts etc. Apparently the once lucrative Aerosmith back catalogue had become meaningless because of downloading, until they released their version of Guitar Hero and are once again rolling in the royalties.

The Smashing Pumpkins release is an interesting notion as well, I wonder if not so far down the road having your music appear in a video game will be as essential and common place as putting out a music video used to be.

I just hope that an artist/band I admire doesn't do a Wal-mart only deal - I break into hives just going near one of those places and generally hate buying music in places that also sell appliances. I do confess to the occasional Starbucks acquisition when I am buying a coffee - they have had a few decent CDs available from time to time and it goes well with morning caffeine fix.