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Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Play Full-Length Tracks And Entire Albums For FREE On the Last.fm

Last.fm made it possible to play any track for free.

With the support of the folks behind EMI, Sony BMG, Universal and Warner—and the artists they work with—plus thousands of independent artists and labels, Last.fm made the biggest legal collection of music available to play online for free.

Full-length tracks are now available in the US, UK, and Germany, and soon available into other countries. During this initial public beta period, each track can be played up to 3 times for free before a notice appears telling you about our upcoming subscription service. The soon-to-be announced subscription service will give you unlimited plays and some other useful things. Last.fm team is also working on bringing full-length tracks to the desktop client and beyond.

Free full-length tracks are obviously great news for listeners, but also great for artists and labels, who get paid every time someone streams a song. Music on Last.fm is perpetually monetized. This is good because artists get paid based on how popular a song is with their fans, instead of a fixed amount.

Last.fm will be paying artists directly.

Last.fm already have licenses with the various royalty collection societies, but now unsigned artists can put their music on Last.fm and be paid directly for every song played. This helps to level the playing-field—now you can make music, upload it to Last.fm and earn money for each play. If you make music, you can sign up to participate for free.

How do Last.fm get revenue ?

"We’re not printing money to pay for this—but the business model is simple enough: we are paying artists and labels a share of advertising revenue from the website." This is what they say.

There are already millions of tracks available, and more and more are added every day.

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