Paul McCartney appears to be a “Band on the Run” … at least when it comes to popular music streaming services. The former Beatle has pulled his tracks from the likes of Spotify, Rdio and Rhapsody just a few days after releasing a new album, Kisses on the Bottom.
Rhapsody, the Seattle-based music streaming service, said that it received a take-down notice from Universal Music Group/Concord last night and is complying with the request to remove works by McCartney.
“Rhapsody members have enjoyed streaming Mr. McCartney’s music for more than four years and are sure to be very disappointed to find that it has been restricted,” Rhapsody said in a statement sent to GeekWire, noting that the content is still available in its radio offering.
The statement continued, “As the number-one premium subscription music service in the U.S. with more one million paying subscribers, Rhapsody has generated significant revenue for Mr. McCartney, his label and his publisher over the years, and has provided a compelling alternative to piracy. We have a great relationship with the label and Eastman Management, so this development was a shock.”
A number of other artists have refused to release their new albums through Rhapsody and other services, namely Coldplay and The Black Keys. But pulling an entire collection of works is unusual.
In fact, the company noted that record label Barsuk recently made the entire catalog of Death Cab for Cutie tracks available through the Rhapsody service. Rhapsody now has 14 million tracks available to listeners.
“Overall, the labels have been very supportive of streaming and view it as the future of the music industry,” according to the Rhapsody statement. “We will continue to work with labels, artists and management to keep as much content available on premium streaming services like Rhapsody as possible.”
Interestingly, the decision comes just as McCartney is promoting his new album with a concert at Capitol Records in Hollywood, California. In fact, Apple plans to stream the concert for free via iTunes.
In a high-profile deal, the Beatles added their songs to iTunes in 2010. Tracks from the Fab Four, however, are not available on most streaming music services.