5 More Indies Take MySpace Music Deal

By | January 19, 2009 at 8:42 AM

Myspace_music logoIndie heavyweights Nettwerk, INgrooves, IRIS Distribution, RoyaltyShare and Wind-up have all signed deals to have their music featured and sold on MySpace Music. Indie aggregators The Orchard and IODA signed on several months ago. Today’s announcement leaves Merlin and its supporters including Koch and Beggars as the last large indie holdouts.

When MySpace Music launched late last year, the indie community cried foul because they had not been offered the same equity position that the social networker gave the four major label groups. “Without an equitable participation by independents, that creates a situation that is both unhealthy and dangerous,” Merlin CEO Charles Caldas said at time.

The new partnerships add several hundred thousand songs to MySpace Music’s catalog and provide several additional distribution partners through which independent artists and labels can monetize their content on the MySpace Music platform. Thus far, MySpace has not offered a direct solution for d.i.y. artists unaffiliated with a distributor or label.

More from the press release:

“These important new partnerships will allow the MySpace Music community to access even more of their favorite independent music while enabling monetization opportunities for the newly licensed artists,” said Courtney William Holt, President of MySpace Music. “We are thrilled to have our new partners on board and will continue our aggressive content acquisition efforts.”

Nettwerk Music Group is Canada’s leading privately-owned record label and artist management company. The Nettwerk catalog includes over 250 artists, including Old Crow Medicine Show, The Weepies and Ladytron. Nettwerk is also responsible for managing some of the industry’s biggest artists, including Sarah McLachlan and Barenaked Ladies.

“Nettwerk is incredibly excited about this partnership with MySpace. As a company, we are constantly looking for inventive, non-traditional ways to introduce new music and make new fans,” said Terry McBride, CEO of Nettwerk. “We have always valued MySpace as a top partner in allowing music fans and our artists to connect, and we look forward to further developing our relationship with such an innovative and forward-thinking company.”

INgrooves is an industry leader in customized marketing, promotion and synch licensing. INgrooves also provides administrative support to help maximize the earnings potential of specific releases or catalogs. The INgrooves partnership will give MySpace Music users access to the full music catalogs of a richly diverse set of labels and artists, including VP Records, K-Tel International, Fat Possum, Metal Blade, Dolly Parton, J Dilla, Thievery Corporation, Tila Tequila, The Crystal Method, Cary Brothers, Tracy Lawrence, Lady Sovereign, Too $hort, Paul Oakenfold and John Digweed.

“We are delighted to be working with MySpace Music,” stated Robb McDaniels, CEO and Founder of INgrooves. “Part of the INgrooves difference is providing our partner labels and artists with new and compelling ways to reach their customers and fans. And by tapping into MySpace’s extensive network of avid music fans, our labels and artists will benefit greatly from one of the world’s leading communities dedicated to music discovery.”

IRIS Distribution is a leading digital distribution company, whose catalog includes such top labels as

Chemikal Underground, Duck Down, K Records, Ninja Tune, and prominent artists including She Wants Revenge, Mogwai, KRS-One, Marvin Gaye, Lou Reed, Modest Mouse, and Deerhunter.

“Making sure our labels are able to participate in all significant distribution outlets is a priority for us,” said Bryn Boughton, Chief Marketing Officer for IRIS. “We look forward to working with MySpace Music to foster a closer artist-fan connection as well as provide additional revenue streams for our clients.”

RoyaltyShare is a premier provider of digital royalty solutions to the entertainment industry, focused on providing comprehensive royalty accounting and content management services to record labels, music distributors and music publishers. RoyaltyShare offers an expansive music catalog, including George Carlin, Tesla and New World Records.

“MySpace Music is breaking new ground by delivering one of the most comprehensive selections of independent music in a social networking environment, connecting artists and fans on an unprecedented personal level,” said Bob Kohn, Chairman and CEO of RoyaltyShare. “We are pleased that RoyaltyShare’s record labels clients will now have the opportunity to distribute content through MySpace and take advantage of the great opportunities that exist to build and maintain lasting relationships with their fans.”

Users will also be able to access Wind-up’s music catalog, including audio and video content from the likes of Evanescence, Creed, Seether and Finger Eleven through MySpace Music’s current distribution deal with Sony Music Entertainment.

“MySpace has always been friend to independent music, which is why we’re thrilled to be strengthening our partnership via MySpace Music,” said Ed Kiang, Vice President, Digital Platforms of Wind-up Entertainment. Through this platform, Wind-up Records will be able to offer our fans a more integrated cross-channel music experience that leverages our 360-degree artist development philosophy while fostering greater social engagement among artists and fans alike.”

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