NAPSTER SEALS LANDMARK LICENSING DEAL

Stereophonics, Moby and Tom Jones are among the bands who have signed their rosters over in the unique new arrangement...

STEREOPHONICS, MOBY, SLIPKNOT, TOM JONES, UNDERWORLD,

BASEMENT JAXX, ASH and a host of other acts are set to be tied to file

sharing application NAPSTER in a landmark deal announced

minutes ago (June 26), NME.COM can reveal.

The bands’ labels are part of AIM (Association Of Independent Music) who announced they have signed over their rosters in a worldwide licensing deal with Napster, allowing their entire catalogues to be posted on the Internet.

The deal is set to kick in when the application’s new subscription service begins later this summer.

Napster founder Shawn Fanning was present at London’s Chelsea Village this morning (June 26) when the deal was announced.

A statement revealing the news reads: “The UK’s Association Of Independent Music (AIM) and Independent Music Company Association today signal a worldwide licensing agreement with Napster on behalf of the UK and European Independent record sectors. The agreement has at once authorised use of hundreds of thousands of tracks belonging to hundreds of independent record labels across Europe and helped secure the future of Napster’s file-sharing community when its membership based service launches this summer.”

The cost for users subscribing to the service has not yet been announced, nor has the percentage of royalties that will go to artists or labels.

Ash were one of the first acts to comment, wholeheartedly welcoming the deal.

“We placed the whole of our new album [‘Free All Angels’] on Napster as soon as it was completed and it definitely helped create awareness of new songs… it is one of the best promotional devices in the world.”

NME.COM will bring you more on this later.