Stones Throw Records has partnered with Drip.fm to offer customers another avenue for listening to the label’s newest releases. For a charge of $10 per month, joining members will receive every record, EP and single released by Stones Throw after the time a subscriber signs up.
Stones Throw will deliver releases to the customers’ inbox, allowing subscribers to download the music at any time. The most notable part of this deal is that the music made available to subscribers will be released as ‘DRM-Free’ files. DRM stands for digital rights management. DRM is a method of protecting music copyrights on digital files after a sale has taken place to limit the use and potential outside distribution of files. In its simplest terms, DRM music files are sold with an encrypted lock on them to prevent the extent of their use. DRM is employed by major music providers including Apple, Amazon and Sony, among others, and is an issue that has caused great controversy in recent months.
Fortunately for those interested in Stones Throw’s service, there is no need to worry about DRM restrictions.
Stones Throw Records was founded in 1996 by Chris Manak who assumes the stage name Peanut Butter Wolf when he’s not busy running one of (if not) the most respected hip-hop record labels. Stones Throw is based out of Los Angeles with headquarters located in the Los Feliz area of LA.
Stones Throw has been home to an immensely influential roster of hip-hop and R&B groups including J Dilla, Madlib, MF Doom and Aloe Blacc.
Though this monthly subscription service appears to be a steal for Stones Throw loyalists and newcomers alike, Manak doesn’t believe that it will replace traditional methods of acquiring his label’s music. Manak said to NPR, “We’re not trying to make this our main focus… You can still get our music through iTunes — a lot a people get it that way, and we’re happy that they do. You can buy vinyl, you can listen to it on YouTube for free … Whatever, it’s your choice. We’re just giving the customer another option.”
For those already familiar with Stones Throw, the new subscription service seems like a cheap way to stay involved, and for those just discovering Stones Throw, it will be a great way to get involved.