In an act that may speak of innovation, flexibility, desperation, or disgust with the cost of marketing via radio (or all of the above), a major label is going to introduce songs on a video game rather than through radio for the first time:
- The goal is to lure young, male consumers into buying entire CD’s when they are released to stores up to four months later.
The company, Island Def Jam, a unit of Universal Music Group, has joined forces with Electronic Arts, the world’s largest game maker, and will create video games to capitalize on two hugely popular forms of entertainment among boys and young men ages 11 to 25: hip-hop and video games. Universal Music Group is owned by Vivendi Universal.
The first game, Vendetta, one in a series of three, will be released on April 1. Vendetta, a wrestling game, will contain 12 Def Jam artists, including DMX, Scarface, Method Man, Ghostface Killah, Ludacris, Redman, N.O.R.E., Capone and Christina Milian, who will choke-hold and drop-kick their opponents around the ring.
….The games will allow players to take on the role of their favorite artists in wrestling matches, which will take place against the backdrop of upbeat new singles by each of the artists, said Lyor Cohen, chairman and chief executive of the Island Def Jam music group. All the artists in Vendetta will release albums by the end of the summer, he said.
“You would have to be totally disconnected from the street to not realize how important gaming is for kids,” Mr. Cohen said. “And you have to be equally disconnected not to see the value in leveraging music along with this boom in gaming.” [NY Times]