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Samsung to give away 1 million copies of new Jay-Z album

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.

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Jay-Z announced the partnership in an ad the aired during Game 5 of the NBA Finals on Sunday.

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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.

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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.

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“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.

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Twitter/@rfaughnder

ryan.faughnder@latimes.com

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