Independent publisher peermusic is releasing the debut album of Latin pop/R&B artist Monty directly to physical retail via a partnership with Ritmo Latino.

The nation's largest chain of Latin music stores will carry Monty's album, "Ella," in all 51 of its stores for $6.98 after its April 15 release. Ritmo Latino will feature the release in its listening posts and its in-store play, as well as show the video for the title track on its video screens.

In addition, Monty will promote the release at Ritmo in-stores and local television in select markets, says Yvonne Gomez, peermusic Latin creative director, West Coast & Mexico. Gibson Guitar will help promote the in-stores with guitar raffles.

The plan is to "open up market by market, little by little, and tie in a local show in each of the cities," says Gomez, who executive-produced Monty's album. "I don't have the rigidness of a label on meeting deadlines."

"We are supporting this because we believe in the quality of this artist and we think it will do well," says Ritmo Latino president David Massry. "The market is in need [of] new talents and we have always been interested in helping developing artists.”

Peermusic digitally released Monty's album on iTunes last summer, and preceded it with a bundled video and digital single for "Ella," co-written and produced by Christopher "Tricky" Stewart ("Umbrella," "Touch My Body").

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