Universal Music will this week begin the digital rollout of rare recordings unearthed from the BBC vaults. The strategy kicks off with an album by veteran dance act The Orb, "The Orb -- The Orb's Adve
Universal Music will this week begin the digital rollout of rare recordings unearthed from the BBC vaults.
The strategy kicks off with an album by veteran dance act The Orb, "The Orb -- The Orb's Adventures Beyond The Ultraworld," which was originally released in April 1991.
The album will be re-released as a three-CD “Deluxe Edition.” The digital version of the “Deluxe Edition,” however, will also feature an additional 4th download-only “digital disc.”
This will comprise more Orb recordings, plus two exclusive tracks recorded during performances on the BBC's iconic John Peel Session music radio program. The two BBC tracks are "Back Side of the Moon" and "Into the Fourth Dimension."
Additionally, the digitized version of the album will be exclusively available on Apple Computer’s iTunes Music Store.
Other acts scheduled to receive a similar treatment in the coming weeks include 1950s rock legend Billy Fury, 1980s pop act the Housemartins, and Britpop hitmakers Pulp. In addition to the CD versions, consumers will be able to buy digitized editions that will include download-only versions of these artists' performances from BBC radio and TV.
The initiative is possible thanks to a comprehensive licensing deal struck last summer between Universal Music and BBC Worldwide, the public broadcaster's commercial arm.
Previously, the BBC had only licensed content from its archive on a case-by-case basis.
Since then, Universal Music has explored the BBC's vaults of original recordings on conventional film and vinyl –- dating back to the 1950s -- before digitizing them for this venture.
"Until now, no record company has gone back through the BBC's archives and some were even thought to be lost," a spokesperson explained.