Re the latest: it's re-lease

Sunday 8 June 2003

The latest trend in music packaging is, well, repackaging. Mariah Carey is the latest artist to re-release her album in hopes it will spur sales. Carey will reissue "Charmbracelet" on her MonarC/Island label July 29 to include the hit "I Know What You Want", her collaboration with Busta Rhymes and Flipmode Squad that has returned her to the top of the charts. The new "Charmbracelet" will also include an additional remix and two other songs, as well as a new cover.
The move follows the recent success of country singer Darryl Worley, who took songs from his previous two albums to pad out a rush-released "Have You Forgotten?" CD, featuring the pro-war title track and three previously unreleased songs. The repackaged CD took Worley into the Top 10 for the first time in his career.
Sometimes the downsizing yields a better CD - Jay-Z's "The Blueprint 2.1" condenses the sprawling "The Blueprint 2.0" into a single CD and adds a hot new track "Stop". Of course, this doesn't help anyone who already bought the two-CD "Blueprint 2.0" set.
This repackaging trend won't last long, though. As more and more consumers move toward the Internet to supplement their music needs, Web sites will soon take care of it - giving fans access to their archives, as The Beastie Boys did in 1999, and allowing them to build their own CDs. Instead of waiting for it to come in the mail, though, as you had to for the Beasties, fans will be able to get the tracks as fast as an e-mail.


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