Wednesday, May 24, 2006

(Pop) Music Minus One Downloads

AP: Web retailer sells downloads for musicians

45 minutes ago

A new Web site is trying a different twist on digital music sales by selling songs that consumers can purchase stripped of musical parts such as drums, keyboards, guitar or bass guitar. hopes to entice musicians who want to play along to hits by artists like Smash Mouth, Tears For Fears, Rick James and others while pretending they're actually filling in on a given part.

The site, which launched earlier this month, sells song downloads for about $2 each and compilations of the same song with different instrumental parts removed starting at about $18. The tracks are downloaded in the Windows Media Audio format.

Universal Music Group said Wednesday it licensed instrumental tracks from the original masters of approximately 50 songs to the Web retailer. Among the UMG artists whose works are available on the site are Marvin Gaye, Jackson 5 and Elton John.

The Web site says it expects to offer more than 1,000 songs, or 10,000 tracks, by the end of the year.


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