Say What? – Garth Brooks

Garth Brooks spinning his decision to not release his music digitally:

“For people who have all the records, to have them come get this compilation of 33 songs and then 33 videos and know that Wal-Mart is gonna have it probably somewhere between 11 and 14 bucks. I feel really good about that. When you go online, if you wanna pay 99 cents for all of them at 33 bucks…the math’s pretty easy.”

Isn’t that magnamonious of him?  He would release his music digitally, but he doesn’t want the consumer to get ripped off and have to pay all that extra money!

Except for one little problem.   iTunes and other digital music stores allow an option to sell the album only, and they also have flexible pricing.   Even the standard price for a double album is $19.98, but he could have them charge as little or as much as he wants.

I suspect his real concern is a digital release would mean that consumers could just go and buy the four new tracks, and not be forced to buy a ton of music they already own again.   And even if they sold the album only, digital technology would make it fairly easy for people to share the album with their friends.

Quite frankly, Garth is showing his age.  He’s still stuck in a twentieth century mentality.  If he wants to remain relevant to the younger generation of music consumers, his music has to be available for them to download.    If he seriously thinks a teenager is going to get “Friends in Low Places” at Wal-Mart when they can’t find it on iTunes, instead of just hitting Limewire, he’s delusional.    Heck, I’m 28, and I’ll just spend my money on something other than The Ultimate Hits if I can’t get it on iTunes.     Why he continues to limit the options of his potential audience – first with his exclusive deals and now by stubbornly refusing to go digital – is beyond me.


  1. I am a huge Garth fan, and I actually watched the online broadcast from last Saturday that they had on He explained that they DID meet with the people of iTunes to discuss releasing his catalog online, but each side had one stick-up. And that stick-up was the fact that iTunes sells albums and single songs, but Garth makes albums. He referenced that “No Fences” has his huge hit “Friends in Low Places,” but also contains “Wolves,” which he also holds dear to him. He wants the people buying his music to experience the whole package. He also discussed the artwork that goes into an album and how that’s starting to fade away. Maybe I’m just an old soul myself, but I fully agree with him. I’m 24 and I can’t wait to run out to the store and GET MY HANDS ON Garth’s “The Ultimate Hits” album! Nothing beats that feeling of holding that CD in your hands as you turn up the volume on your stereo. Of course, I’ll add it to my iPod too, so I can listen to it at work. I really don’t grasp what everyone is fusing about…guess I’m the weird one.

  2. Garth Brooks is simply obsessed with his album sales numbers. He wants everything sold as a complete album to drive up his album sales numbers. Of course people would just buy the four new tracks! He has been repackaging the same songs for years. That is all the Walmart boxed set amounted to … driving up his numbers. He is going to pull every trick in the book to jack up album sales totals (including packaging multiple disks together). He has been doing this since his “Double Live” CD, which counted as a sale of 2 CD’s instead of 1! This is getting ridiculous Garth! The only reason that he resists digital music is because he’s afraid that he will miss out on precious album sales totals. I do not buy his “experience the whole package” line at all. When an artist repeatedly adds a couple of new songs to a pile of other recycled songs, it doesn’t even represent a cohesive album.

  3. Garth Brooks sits behind Elvis Presley as the best-selling solo artist in history. He is trying to make a run for the title. It is obviously not about the money anymore for Garth. He will package up 38 disks and slap $11 price on it, just to sell it. I’m not sure how long Garth’s fans are going to put up with this (probably way too long). The whole way that he is going about this is lame!

  4. I personally would love to buy his old stuff. I personally don’t want his four new tracks and I was VERY disappointed when I couldn’t find his songs on iTunes. You can buy his songs from various artists singing it, and to me that really pisses me off. I guess I am old fashioned but I don’t want to hear someone else sing Garth Brook’s song.

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