Hip-hop star Jay-Z has figured out one surefire way to sell a million albums -- by finding a customer in Samsung.
Samsung Electronics Co. has bought 1 million copies of the rapper’s upcoming album to give away to owners of the company’s Galaxy smartphones.
Jay-Z announced the partnership in an ad the aired during Game 5 of the NBA Finals on Sunday.
The three-minute ad shows Jay-Z working on the album, titled “Magna Carta Holy Grail,” with Rick Rubin, Pharrell Williams and Swizz Beatz.
Samsung will make the album available for free through an app on July 4 at 12:01 a.m. EDT, 72 hours before the record is available to the general public. The app is to be launched June 24.
The Wall Street Journal cited an anonymous source who said Samsung paid $5 for every copy of the LP.
The move gives Jay-Z an advertising boost in a time when artists are looking for new ways to sell records.
“More people know Jay-Z’s album is coming than yesterday, and that’s a good thing,” wrote music industry analyst Bob Lefsetz in an email to subscribers.
Samsung, for its part, gets a big celebrity endorsement.