The best-selling country artist of all time and the last major holdout in all of music to make his songs and albums available for streaming may be finally acquiescing to reality. According to a report from HITS Daily Double, Garth has reached a deal with Apple for $30 million, and his turning over his catalog to the company to service his music, including his upcoming projects. According to the report, Garth was turned down by Sony and UMG before signing the deal.
Garth parted with his label RCA Nashville (a subsidiary of Sony) after a fairly lackluster performance of his comeback album Man Against Machine on radio, despite Garth amassing historic numbers during his current comeback tour. On August 8th, Brooks told Cindy Watts of The Tennessean, “I’ve always enjoyed being part of a team. I think you can always be part of something bigger with a team than you can be by yourself. Would I love to be part of a label group? Sure I would. But with the new streaming income now, I can’t make them money.”
Garth went on to say he was solidifying a streaming partner that was “neither of the two partners you think it’s going to be, but it’s one of the biggest partners in the world,” and also said the new partner would absorb his GhostTunes company that was set up to make his music finally available in download form. The difference between GhostTunes and other companies is artists choose to make their music only available in album form—something Garth has been insistent on over the years. It also allows artists to bundle merch with music purchases.
According to the HITS Daily Double report, Garth chose to go with Apple over Spotify because it still gives him the possibility of a sales component in the streaming space.
Garth Brooks is expected to announce new music, potentially including a long-promised duets album with wife Trisha Yearwood and the new label/streaming/download deal soon.