Garth Brooks joins Amazon Music and ends standoff with streaming services
When it came to Garth Brooks’ music being available on streaming services, it often seemed like tomorrow would never come.
The multiplatinum recording artist ended his streaming resistance Wednesday as Amazon announced that Brooks’ music would be available on their week-old streaming service.
“This is a landmark moment for both Amazon Music and Garth Brooks,” Steve Boom, Amazon Music vice president, said in a statement Wednesday. “Garth Brooks is a legendary country music superstar who continues to shatter industry records and amaze fans three decades into his career. We are honored to make his music available for streaming for the first time ever, exclusively on Amazon Music.”
Brooks’ deal with Amazon comes after years of his refusing to allow his music to be streamed on major music sites like Spotify or to be made available for sale on iTunes.
“It is a joy to work with a company that is all about the customer when it comes to service, and all about the music and its creators when it comes to the music,” Brooks said in Wednesday’s statement. “I applaud Amazon on their commitment to quality and thank them for this opportunity.”
In 2014, the artist launched his own online music store and digital library, GhostTunes, where fans could purchase his albums for download. The service differed from competitors by allowing record labels to choose their format for distribution, as well as setting their own prices.
So what happens to GhostTunes now that Brooks is jumping ship for Amazon?
When asked about the future of GhostTunes, Brooks told Billboard that the site would stay up long enough to see prior obligations met — including preexisting bundles and a promotional deal with Fritos — likely through the first of the year.
“Whether GhostTunes goes away or not, I don’t know,” Brooks said. “But I know Garth Brooks will go away from GhostTunes by then.”
Currently available to stream on Amazon Music Unlimited is “Baby, Let’s Lay Down and Dance,” the first single from Brooks’ upcoming album “Gunslinger,” scheduled for release on Nov. 25.
Also available are selected works from the singer-songwriter’s back catalog, including the 2007 album “The Ultimate Hits,” as well as 1998 album “Double Live.”
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