Peter Gabriel, Brian Eno To Offer MUDDA & New Download Service

Music has become a hot topic these days. What with people getting sued for downloading copied music, and iTunes Music Storeis ever increasing competition, you canit pop open a news site without reading something about music downloading. While many new music download services attempt to emulate Appleis efforts, there are a few that are truly different for one reason or another. We told you about one such effort, Magnatune, now is reporting that musicians Peter Gabriel and Brian Eno are setting up an alliance of musicians in an effort to give musicians more control over how their music is sold. From the article, Peter Gabriel, Brian Eno unveil digital "manifesto":

Rock veterans Peter Gabriel and Brian Eno are launching a provocative new musiciansi alliance that would cut against the industry grain by letting artists sell their music online instead of only through record labels.

With the Internet transforming how people buy and listen to songs, musicians need to act now to claim digital musicis future, Gabriel and Eno argued Monday as they handed out a slim red manifesto at a huge dealmaking music conference known as Midem.

They call the plan the "Magnificent Union of Digitally Downloading Artists" -- or MUDDA, which has a less lofty ring to it.

"Unless artists quickly grasp the possibilities that are available to them, then the rules will get written, and theyill get written without much input from artists," said Eno, who has a long history of experimenting with technology.

By removing record labels from the equation, artists can set their own prices and set their own agendas, said the two independent musicians, who hope to launch the online alliance within a month.

Their pamphlet lists ideas for artists to explore once theyire freed from the confines of the CD format. One might decide to release a minute of music every day for a month. Another could post several recorded variations of the same song and ask fans what they like best.

Gabriel, who has his own label, Real World Records, said he isnit trying to shut down the record companies -- he just wants to give artists more options.

"There are some artists who already tried to do everything on their own," he said, adding that those musicians often found out they didnit like marketing or accounting. "We believe there will be all sorts of models for this."

Stop by to read the full article.