Uno, dos, tres, ka-ching!
Love it or hate it, U2’s surprise album Songs of Innocence is probably in your iTunes and it didn’t cost you a cent. But there’s no such thing as a free lunch, and the Irish quartet is reportedly set to make bank on the LP, with Apple shelling out an estimated $100 million to hawk the record and lead single “The Miracle (Of Joey Ramone)” in conjunction with the iPhone 6 and the Apple Watch. (Perhaps they should’ve just titled it iLLUMINATI?)
That dollar figure comes from various sources, and U2 manager Guy O’Seary doesn’t dispute it in a new interview with Billboard. He points out that Songs of Innocence went out to 7 percent of Earth’s population in one fell swoop, and that Apple is giving tens of millions to AIDS charity RED, lest anyone criticize Bono and Co. for cashing in while spouting ideological goals.
Apparently, the massive release may have rankled some feathers among other retailers, who won’t see their cut of the sales until October 13, when Songs of Innocence gets its wide distribution. According to O’Seary, the for-sale edition will include new songs, plus up to seven acoustic versions of the album’s tracks, that will be exclusive to everyone but Apple for five weeks.
If you’re not about the business and just want to talk about the music, man, U2 uploaded a short video from the Songs of Innocence recording sessions to Twitter, exclusively (what’s with these guys and Internet exclusives?). It’s got everything you’d want in a behind-the-scenes U2 clip: Imagination, artistic inspiration, Bono wearing sunglasses indoors, and so on.
— U2 (@U2) September 11, 2014