JAY-Z may still be keeping his acclaimed new album 4:44 off Spotify, but the rapper is now releasing the album on a new format: cassette tape.
The limited edition 4:44 cassette is now available for pre-order at just $9 a piece through Virgin EMI Records’ online store — but it gets better. Those who place orders before 6 p.m. BST (1 p.m. EST) on Friday, August 4 will also have the chance to win side-stage tickets to V Festival, which the rapper headlines.
The annual Virgin Records music festival will be held in England on August 19 and 20, but the lucky winner (chosen at random on August 7) will still have to pay for transportation and accommodation.
— Virgin EMI Records (@VirginEMI) July 25, 2017
After debuting 4:44 on June 30 as an exclusive to his streaming service, Tidal, Jay finally unveiled the album on most major streaming platforms including Apple Music and Amazon Music on July 7. But the record is still unavailable on Spotify, an exclusion that is likely costing the rapper close to $1 million a week.
He’s not the first artist to throw it back to the cassette tape format. Justin Bieber’s Purpose and The Weeknd’s Beauty Behind the Madness came with cassette versions, and classic albums like Eminem’s The Slim Shady LP, Prince and the Revolution’s Purple Rain and others have seen reissues on tape. In fact, cassette album sales grew by 74 percent in 2016, according to Nielsen Music.