Rupert Murdoch’s MySpace execs have been trying to convince the music labels to join them in a Hulu-like JV, designed to give Big Music another alternative to iTunes. In the meantime, though, Rupe is happy to work with Steve Jobs: Apple is selling audio singles (99 cents each) and videos ($1.99 a pop) of American Idol performances this year.
The most interesting note about the deal is who’s not involved: Sony-BMG, the label that owns the rights to produce albums from Idol contestants. That’s because Clive Davis and company don’t actually own the rights to music performed on the show itself. Instead, the proceeds will be split between Apple, Fox, and the show’s producers. Yet more proof that the best way to make money in the music business these days is to not be in the music business.
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