Seattle: Paul McCartney was introduced as the first artist to be signed by Starbucks Corp’s new record label, lending an iconic nameplate to the coffee house giant’s latest entertainment venture.
The company said McCartney was signing a one-album deal with Hear Music, the partnership between Seattle-based Starbucks and Concord Music Group, though financial terms were yet to be disclosed.
The former Beatle, who made an appearance on 21 March over a video feed from London at the company’s annual meeting, said he expects to release his next album on Starbucks’ new“Hear Music” label in early June.
He was impressed with the company’s strategy which would push Starbucks’ 13,500 retail outlets as part of its sales plan which stemmed from a commitment, passion and love of music.
McCartney’s rights to his previous song catalogue are not part of the deal with Starbucks, said Ken Lombard, president of Starbucks’ entertainment unit.
The label plans to sell albums through traditional and digital music outlets, with no advance sales and no additional content for Starbucks stores.
Hear Music has been in talks with other artists and expects to sign two more this year and another eight next year. Rather than overshadowing the next lot of artists who would join the label, McCartney could serve as an “anchor” artist who may help sway other musicians to the label, said Geoff Mayfield, senior analyst, Billboard magazine.
The coffee house chain has produced and sold albums, marketed books and even helped develop a feature-length movie. Starbucks Entertainment is a profitable ventue and with the music initiative, it is likely to step up its consumer appeal in the entertainment segment further.