Truck stop rocker Kid Rock has been one of the poster boys for the "ignore downloads" crowd.
His latest album, Rock and Roll Jesus has not only sold more than 2 million albums, but has continued to sell lots of copies long past its release date--this week, nearly a year after release, it's still at No. 7. That's almost unprecedented in this day and age, when top-selling pop artists (think Mariah Carey) sell hundreds of thousands of albums in their first week then plummet off the charts. Why the staying power? Some argue it's because the hit single from the album, All Summer Long (which is basically a reworking of Lynyrd Skynyrd's "Sweet Home Alabama") hasn't been available as a digital download on iTunes or anywhere else. If you want to own the song, the only way to get it has been to buy the full CD.
That changes today: you can now download the entire Rock and Roll Jesus album--and Kid Rock's entire catalog if you're so inclined--through the Rhapsody MP3 store. The albums are also available to Rhapsody subscribers. You still can't buy the single on its own, as Kid Rock considers himself an album artist and wants you to hear the full package. And still no iTunes, as Apple frowns on album-only sales. It'll be interesting to see if digital availability has any impact on sales, or whether fans keep preferring the CD.