Napster has struck a worldwide licensing agreement with the Association of Independent Music and the Independent Music Companies Association, two organizations that represent hundreds of independent record labels in Europe. It was the music-swapping software making company's first multi-label deal.
As a result of the new pact, songs by artists including Moby, Slipknot, Tricky, Paul Oakenfold, Badly Drawn Boy, Underworld, Tom Jones, Stereophonics, Belle and Sebastian, and numerous others on labels including Beggars Group, V2 Music and XL Recordings will be made available this summer when Napster launches its new membership-based service.
"This is nothing short of a global revolution for musicians and music lovers," AIM chief executive Alison Wenham said. "It proves that the independent record labels of Europe mean business and helps secure Napster's future at the forefront of digital distribution of music. It means that anyone, anywhere in the world with access to a computer and a phone line can legitimately enjoy the most exciting music around."
Despite the deal, Napster must still secure the pertinent rights to third party publishing with regards to the music.