“For two weeks before MTV debuted U2’s video for the new single ‘Vertigo,’ fans had a chance to see the band perform the song on TV — in an iPod commercial. The members of U2 are passionate proponents of Apple’s iPod — ‘It’s the most interesting art object since the electric guitar in terms of music,’ says Bono — but the band’s new partnership with Apple Computer still qualifies as a surprise. In their twenty-five-year history, U2 have never licensed their music for commercial use or even accepted tour sponsorship,” Warren Cohen reports for RollingStone.
“With radio playlists strictly formatted and MTV showing more reality-TV shows than videos, many bands are looking for new ways to bring their music to the public. And so U2 launched the first single from their upcoming album, How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb, with an iPod ad rather than a video. Apple is also releasing a special black U2-edition iPod for $349 with band autographs laser-engraved on the casing. Buyers get a fifty-dollar discount on The Complete U2, a $149 iTunes download package that includes more than 400 songs. ‘I see this as the beginning of a new era in the distribution of music,’ says U2 guitarist the Edge. ‘We’re happy to be part of history and the future,'” Cohen reports.
“The U2-Apple partnership has deep roots. In early 2003, when U2 first heard that Apple was planning to launch an iTunes music store, the band met with Apple founder Steve Jobs at the home of Jimmy Iovine, the co-chairman of U2’s label, Interscope Records. ‘Jimmy is a visionary and believes artists should meet with technologists,’ says Bono,” Cohen reports.
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