New download site to take on UK music industry


MUMBAI:, a specialist music venture, is launching a web 2.0 site that offers background music to UK businesses at a low set fee of £20 while promoting unsigned talent.


At present, UK businesses that wish to play background music on their premises must hold two licenses: one from Phonographic Performance Ltd (PPL) for the sound recording and another from the Performing Rights Society (PRS) for the lyrics. At present, there’s no alternative to this licensing arrangement and the fees are expensive (averaging £450).


The idea behind is to expose unsigned artists and issue licenses for a fraction of the cost of those from PPL and PRS. Everyone benefits, as artists will have their music played publicly, raising their profile amongst a wide target audience. Possible outlets will include bars, cafes, hairdressers and retail outlets, as well as ‘on hold’ music on telephone systems. Meanwhile, business will save hundreds of pounds per unit while supporting new talent. CEO Steven Law said, “We want to promote talented artists in the UK and worldwide who have recorded high quality music but, for whatever reason, aren’t getting the exposure they deserve. We’ll provide a limitless supply of music that can be downloaded from the site and obtained by CD ordering service too. Every eighth MP3 will be embedded with ‘this music is brought to you by’, further promoting artists and the site in general.”


Also planned are events featuring the most popular artists performing live gigs in licensees’ business and other venues. This represents an opportunity for the unsigned artists to gain even wider exposure than by having their music played extensively in UK commercial premises. is a web 2.0 (social interaction) start-up site. After registering quickly and easily, artists can upload their music and biographies and create blogs, while users can listen to and rate the tunes, leave feedback and view charts of the week’s most popular audio plays and downloads. Business users subscribed to the service can download music, while avoiding the PPL/PRS license fees, and can search for the exact genre they require.


Law added, “The combined income from the PPL and PRS in 2006 was over £750 million in the UK alone. We believe the background music business is ready for a shake up and is ready to give it one.”