Jimmy Iovine is lining up artists for more iTunes-exclusive albums

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Apple has big ambitions for its new music streaming service.
Could more exclusives be in iTunes' future? Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Beats co-founder Jimmy Iovine is in fresh talks with the world’s top musicians, in hopes of landing more exclusive album deals for iTunes, reports The New York Post.

Apple is looking to replicate the success Beyonce had with her exclusive iTunes album in December 2013, by signing other hot artists to drop their albums early on Beats Music and iTunes. But according to industry sources, the idea of artists making side deals with streaming services is not going over well with record label executives.

It’s unknown who Iovine has been eyeing for exclusive albums, but he was brought on to Apple partly for his deep connections in the music industry. He’s friends with Nicki Minaj, who advertises Beats in her music videos. Iovine is also close with Will.i.am, Pharrell, Gwen Stefani and Kanye West, all of whom are rumored to have new albums in the work. And don’t forget about Dr. Dre, who’s been tutoring Kendrick Lamar ahead of his highly anticipated third album.

Apple has been quiet about its plans for Beats since acquiring the company for $3 billion earlier this year. A complete redesign has been rumored to be underway, and it’s possible that Apple may dump the Beats Music name altogether and integrate the service into iTunes.

According the the Post’s sources, Beats Music subscribers now number around 300,000, which outperformed the expectations of promotional partner AT&T, but it’s still just a drop in the bucket compared to the 10 million paying subscribers Spotify scooped up in 2014.

Source: NYPost

  • Michael Smith

    I’m not surprised music executives are a little pissed at this artist exclusive move as it cuts the middleman right out. You don’t need the record labels to get your music anymore as Spotify, Apple, Google are now the distributers and technology makes every artist their own producer.

    I believe Apple should dump iTunes for Beats music, not the other way around.
    I’m surprised iTunes has lasted as long as it has, it crams way to much stuff into one ill named app and it really doesn’t do anything at this point that separate apps could not do better on their own.

    • CelestialTerrestrial

      I think you are confusing iTunes the app and iTunes the Music Store. Don’t lump them together because one is just a player/organizer for apps/content and the other is an on line music store.

      Beats is just a subscription service and it hasn’t proven that it’s profitable.

      There are essentially 4 or 5 different methods of obtaining music.

      1. Physical – CD, SACD, vinyl, etc.
      2. Digital Download – MP3/AAC, ALAC, AIFF, FLAC, etc.
      3. Internet Radio like iTunes Radio, Pandora, etc. – Ad Based
      4. Subscription Service – Spotify, Beats, etc.
      5. Stealing it.

      1 and 2 have been proven to be profitable, but not huge profits, but still profitable.
      3 and 4 haven’t proved they are profitable business models.
      5. is illegal and definitely not profitable.

      • Michael Smith

        Your or right I was confusing the two. I never really bought into the DRM digital downloads, I tended to use #1, #5 and now #4 meets and exceeds my needs.
        I just wish that subscription services can find its footing and eventually turn into a profitable enterprise for artists as they don’t need to be sharing profits with yet another middleman.

  • AAPL_@_$101_Is_A_Done_Deal_:)

    Great. Now Apple should also find some mover in the move or TV business to line up some exclusive video content for iTunes. Without the content it really doesn’t matter how good the hardware is.

  • Anyone think there might be a rebranding of iTunes as Beats? Or a convergence?