**Update 7:15pm PST July 9th, 2013**
Looks like this video confirms--You can see Jay Z on hot 97 where he talks about "open letter" on vinyl via third man, immediately below.
Is Magna Carta Holy Grail an incredible album?
Should you be impressed that Jay Z sold a million copies for Samsung Galaxy users before it was even released to buy elsewhere?
- No. No you should not.
DON'T GET ME WRONG. I'm a huge fan of Jay Z and his music and talent. I just don't think Samsung buying a million copies of the album, digitally, for it's users is impressive by any means. I mean, it certainly says something of Jay Zs stature... it says something of the power and faith that a brand like Samsung is willing to put that much stock in Jay Z as a brand. But from a record sales perspective, I don't think it stands up.
I mean, did Samsung pay retail price? How much do you have to charge for an album for it to count as an album sale? Business Insider states that the numbers break down to $5 a copy... but note that Jay Z probably makes a lot more money off that deal than it would if 1 million copies were sold through other mediums like iTunes since his stake is probably much less through alternative channels. But still. If Justin Timberlake or Kanye West released their album for $5 on iTunes on their opening week, I'd like to think they'd have sold SIGNIFICANTLY more copies than they did.
Again, I just don't think you can compare these things directly.
PROBABLY the only way to impress me would have been if he'd have paired up with some vinyl press and sent me a physical copy of his album that only me and my vinyl collecting friends could enjoy for 3 days before the rest of the world gets their 1s and 0s copy on their phone. Maybe next time.
Anyway, this album is incredible, and you need to get a copy of it to make your summer complete. Listen to "Holy Grail" featuring Justin Timberlake and watch Jay Z talk about the album in a Samsung Galaxy ad, below.