Starbucks exits music biz
Offloads Hear Music
Starbucks has offloaded its music tentacle Hear Music just a year after pulling off a major coup in signing Paul McCartney to the label, Variety reports.
The coffee monolith has turned over the operation to Concord Music Group, its partner in the venture, in what it described as "a restructuring of its entertainment business to focus on digital strategy and core content with music and books".
The company added it would "look for ways to increase Wi-Fi related offerings and other in-store technology" - presumably a reference to its deal with Apple to roll out the iTunes Music Store in coffee houses across the US.
The low-key announcement is in marked contrast to last year's fanfaring of Starbucks' entry into the music business. On signing to Hear Music, McCartney said he was "impressed with Hear Music's plan to use Starbucks' 13,500 retail outlets to sell the album", and enthused: "For me, the great thing is the commitment and the passion and the love of music, which as an artist is good to see."
Glen Barros, president of Concord Music Group, declared: "This is a pretty powerful new platform, when you can reach 44 million customers per week through Starbucks stores."
Hear Music also released albums by Joni Mitchell and James Taylor last year, and has "four or five" offerings slated for a 2008 release, including a disc by British R&B singer James Hunter. ®
Never anything I've heard before?
Why on earth would you want to hear something you've heard before when you enter a store selling new music?
guess you must spend you time listening to Golden Oldies or Greatest Hits and get pissed when the radio station plays something from a new artist. That's really the lamest complaint I've ever heard about going to a Starbucks store.
44 million customers per week, maybe, but how many of them are return customers who didn't buy the same crap music the day earlier?
The music these stores chooses to play makes me cringe. Its never anything I've heard before, and apparently never will ever again. Not even 1-hit wonders, the choices are so bad.
And Starbucks wonders why their earnings are off? It's a friggin' coffee shop and nothing more. If they want it to be more it won't be a coffee shop any more. Which might explain why their coffee is sucking so bad.