In surprising news, “American Boy” has been officially pulled from iTunes due to an experiment by Estelle’s label to increase album sales. According to recent reports, Warner made the move to force fans to buy the whole album, not just individual songs. Estelle’s hit “American Boy” featuring Kanye West, was a UK number one in March. It was in the iTunes top 10 in the US before its removal. Signed to the same label as Kid Rock, who insisted that his hit single All Summer Long and album Rock ‘n’ Roll Jesus were kept off iTunes in the US resulted in his album reaching number one, selling 1.7 million copies. That has led Warner to explore whether fans of other artists could be persuaded to buy the whole album, according to the the Wall Street Journal. That is more lucrative to labels and artists than if just a few songs were picked to download from iTunes, which does not allow albums to be sold only in whole. A Warner spokesman told the paper the removal of Shine from iTunes was part of a broad range of strategies “uniquely tailored to each artist and their fanbase in an effort to optimise revenues and promote long-term artist development.” Estelle’s “Shine” has been certified gold since its release April 29th in the United States.
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