Apple has made another couple of marquee signings as it prepares to launch its new music streaming service today.
Music from AC/DC and Dr. Dre's influential debut album 'The Chronic' will be available to stream on Apple Music alongside Taylor Swift's 1989 album, when it launches at 11 am EST on June 30. It's marks a digital first for both artists.
It's hardly a huge surprise that 'The Chronic' is available, after all Apple Music is founded on the $3 billion acquisition of Dr. Dre's Beats last year. But the rapper never even made 'The Chronic' available on his on Beats Music platform for streaming or download. Dr. Dre is still involved at Apple and obviously has made the 1992 album exclusive to Apple Music.
The AC/DC deal is the first time the rock legends have made their music available for streaming, but it's not an exclusive deal. AC/DC albums will be available to stream on Spotify, Deezer and Rdio as well as Apple Music. The band made its digital debut in 2012 when its back catalog launched on iTunes and now seems to be fully embracing the format by signing up to streaming services. Neither AC/DC or any of its streaming partners have said exactly which albums or songs will be available as yet.
AC/DC's move is the latest signing of a big name holdout to a streaming service. Taylor Swift was the marquee signing for Apple Music, so much so that she managed to get them to change their policy on paying artists during the three month trial period. Another longtime streaming holdout, Led Zeppelin also gave in to the changing industry by signing an exclusive streaming deal with Spotify in 2013. The list of artists not available on streaming services is growing ever smaller and it'll be interesting to see how much longer the likes of The Beatles can hold out from what is becoming the mainstream way to listen to music.
Apple Music is set to launch at 11 am EST and its signature radio station Beats 1 will start an hour later. Former BBC 1 radio one DJ Zane Lowe is set to kick off the station with an interview with Eminem. Apple Music and the Connect social network are being launched as part of the iOS 8.4 update. As the Taylor Swift incident publicised the service is available on free trial for three month and will then cost $9.99 per month.