Why Did U2 Release A Free Album?
Just a few months ago, U2 and Apple broke all kinds of world records with the release of U2’s latest album “Songs of Innocence”. The best part of it: it was completely free!
Though some idiotic iTunes users complained that the excellent album was downloaded automatically into their iTunes and devices, the reception by fans was by and large positive.
Does it make sense for a band to give away their music entirely for free to build its fan base and drive sales of other music-related products instead?
In the case of U2 it makes perfect sense. U2 is one of the few bands that is approaching almost $1 billion in concert ticket sales, and an album release only helps grow its fanbase who will hopefully want to see them live in concert.
We don’t know for sure, but it’s very likely that Apple did pay U2 a nominal amount for their album, because Apple also benefits from the massive free publicity and also new iTunes users that sign-up to get the free U2 album. So U2 didn’t completely give it away for free. It’s just free for Apple iTunes customers.
What do you think? Should more artists release their albums entirely for free?