Vic Gundutra

Google hits up Harry Fox for Christmas music store launch?

July 26, 2010: 9:50 AM ET

A new rumor today says Google is frantically putting together a deal which would grant the company license to sell music directly.

Google  is said to be in "accelerated" talks with the Harry Fox Agency, which is the largest owner of mechanical music licenses in the Unites States, to build out its Music store.   A mechanical license is described as:

Within the music industry, a mechanical licence gives the holder permission to create copies of a recorded song which they did not write and/or do not have copyright over. It is an agreement with the composition copyright holder, the publisher, or the songwriter that allows the holder to reproduce the composition -- recording, printed sheet music, lyrics, for example. This license specifically refers to the musical composition as an entity, not any particular physical sound recording(s) of the composition. For example, you would need a mechanical license to publish sheet music for "California Girls," composed by Brian Wilson and Mike Love, from their publisher. You would also need it if you wanted to press CDs of your band singing "California Girls." However, if you wanted to press CDs of the 1965 Beach Boys recording of "California Girls," you would need both a mechanical license AND a master recording license from the Beach Boys (or their record label).

The NY Post's report agrees with the previous Google Music rumors which have pointed to a Christmas launch.

Google (GOOG) would need to have Harry Fox signed up before it could start selling major label music on its own. Google currently sells lots of music, though it fulfills orders through Amazon and iTunes.

Music operations at Google have been accelerating for months. More

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