Billboard Bits: Prince, iTunes, Silverchair
To celebrate the launch of his new 3121 fragrance, Prince will play a private show July 7 at the Minneapolis outpost of Macy's. For $250, fans can purchase a package featuring a ticket to that gig, aTo celebrate the launch of his new 3121 fragrance, Prince will play a private show July 7 at the Minneapolis outpost of Macy's. For $250, fans can purchase a package featuring a ticket to that gig, a ticket to Prince's show at Target Center later that evening, a bottle of the fragrance and a special T-shirt.
The package will sell for $250 plus taxes and fees and will be available Friday morning (June 1) at the cosmetics and fragrance department at Macy's.
As previously reported, Prince will play a 21-date tour in London starting in August, including a host of dates at the city's new 02 Arena. A run of shows at Los Angeles' Roosevelt Hotel is also reportedly in the works.
-- Marc Pellegrino, N.Y.
Apple today (May 30) introduced its DRM-free, higher-quality digital music store in an update to the iTunes service, called iTunes Plus.
The new iTunes tier will feature music with no DRM protection technology and 256 kbps file sizes for $1.29 per track, compared to the DRM-protected 128 kbps files sold on the existing iTunes service for 99 cents per track.
iTunes users can replace any music previously purchased from the existing iTunes service with the new DRM-free/higher quality tracks by paying the 30 cents difference, rather than repurchasing the whole track. EMI Music Group is the only major label licensing music to the new iTunes Plus service. Apple is working on added additional indie label fare as well.
-- Antony Bruno, Denver
Aussie rock act Silverchair's latest album, "Young Modern," will be available July 24 in North America via a distribution deal with Warner Music Group's Independent Label Group. The trio has been signed to manager John Watson's Eleven: A Music Company label for the past several years.
As previously reported, Silverchair recently became only the third act to have scored three No. 1s on the Australian Recording Industry Association's Top 100 chart, due to the popularity of its new single "Straight Lines." "Young Modern" was released in March in Australia.
The group's lone North American date of the summer will come Aug. 4 at Lollapalooza in Chicago, after which it will play various festivals in Europe.
-- Katie Hasty, N.Y.