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Monday, November 8, 2004

hail the pirate queen – black catalog coming online

there’s a new model in town.. and it’s about longetivity in the music business, embracing the audience, enhancing value, and doing good all at the same time…

Queen sell pirate music to fans [bbc news, nov 3, 2004]

Using expert advice, the band has selected the best illegal Queen recordings and will make them available to download on their official website.

The downloads will be available at the rate of three tracks each month, at a fixed cost of 5 per recording.

All proceeds will be donated to the Mercury Phoenix Trust, to combat Aids.

this is a big development in a lot of ways… firstly, the career trajectory of queen changed pretty dramatically with freddie mercury’s death in 1991. that means real limited access to two of the three general revenue option for a band – performance and patronage. queen isn’t queen without freddie, so they won’t be doing blow-out stadium concerts or movie soundtracks anytime soon. left with no options other than their past to move forward, queen has embraced their legacy of bootlegs, and, in very classy form, added value to the “black catalog” (not to be confused with their back catalog).

the filtering problem is… well, a huge problem. with that many years of tours, and that many potential bootleggers out there in the world, the pile of junk bootleg recordings of queen has got to be huge. so how do you sort it out and find the gems in the crap? talk to the experts, of course. in this case, it’s frank hazenberg, andreas voigts and frank palstra. these musigeeks have been playing with this material for years. ask them what’s worth having – they know.

and now, leveraged through the official sanction (and gathering point) of the queen website, and with an eye toward doing some good with this material (proceeds benefit the mercury phoenix trust).

posted by roj at 5:05 am