Kid Rock, The Beatles, AC/DC and Garth Brooks would make for a bizarre and unlikely concert line up, yet they share something in common: they are the last men standing as far as making their music available on iTunes. In the case of Kid Rock, he is apparently refusing to put those albums over which he has control onto iTunes as a matter of principle. According to the BBC the Rock 'n' Roll Jesus, real name Robert Ritchie, is holding firm simply because performers are not getting paid their fair dues for material downloaded from the market leading Apple music store.
Not that being absent from iTunes is holding back his career, after all his last album went to number one in the US charts without the help of Apple. That said, his new 'All Summer Long' single has appeared on iTunes in Europe. When it comes to albums he reckons that the actual cost to him of not being available for download on iTunes, in terms of album sales, is something in the region of 20 percent.
"I will be on iTunes eventually because I can't avoid it" Kid Rock told the BBC, adding that "the Internet was an opportunity for everyone to be treated fairly, for the consumer to get a fair price, for the artist to be paid fairly, for the record companies to make some money."
The trouble was the music industry didn't see it like that and continued to try and milk consumer and artist for as long as possible.
Which is probably why, a couple of years back, Rock admits he told his record company that he would not make a stand against illegal downloads. In fact, he says that he told them they had been stealing from artists for years so he told fans "download it illegally, I don't care. I want you to hear my music so I can play live."
These days he is a little more reserved, admitting that he doesn't agree with illegal downloading but arguing that the playing field should be levelled. By which he means that if they steal his music they should steal all music, apparently.
This is a somewhat spurious argument of course, after all nobody is suggesting you should walk into Wal-Mart and walk out with whatever CDs you want simply because you think music should be free.