LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Clear Channel Communications Inc. on Monday said it has signed singer Jewel as the first major-label music artist to take part in its controversial service for instant concert recordings.
Clear Channel’s Instant Live operation, which makes CDs of concert performances available to attendees within five minutes of the end of a show, has been criticized by smaller competitors for claiming to control a key patent covering the technology for that service.
Besides Jewel, who records for Warner Music Group’s Atlantic Records label, other artists who have signed up for Instant Live this summer include KISS, Peter Frampton and the Cowboy Junkies. In past, most bands using the service have been either unsigned or with smaller labels.
San Antonio-based Clear Channel also said the Instant Live unit has struck a retail distribution deal for some of its concert recordings and was “close” to announcing a digital distribution agreement.
But the Jewel recordings, Instant Live said, would be available only to attendees at the various concert venues. It began offering CDs of her concerts in mid-June.
Clear Channel has said it is willing to license its patents to competitors, while some, like Immediatek Inc.’s DiscLive, argue that their technology does not infringe on the Instant Live patent, which it acquired in early April.