Online Rock: Empowering Musicians

Press Release


Zappa Veteran Ike Willis Debuts New Album With OnlineRock
One free download among 11 new tracks sold digitally from site 

PALO ALTO, Calif., November 9, 1999 –From Joe’s Garage to the World Wide Web. Ike Willis, Frank Zappa’s lead singer for more than a decade, is debuting the domestic release of his new album from his OnlineRock Web site.  Willis is among the first artists to sell music through OnlineRock’s digital music program that was also announced today (see companion release).

Willis is one of the most noteworthy acts to premier an entire album online. The new album, Dirty Pictures, contains 11 tracks that can be purchased for download as MP3 files.  Andy Young, one of the cuts on the new album, can be downloaded for free from Willis’ OnlineRock site.

Willis quickly became a popular addition of Zappa’s band during the 80’s bringing voice to Thingfish, and is most widely known as the voice of Joe from the critically acclaimed Joe’s Garage.  "Many of the songs on Joe’s Garage alluded to the frustrations we had dealing with industry executives.  But the Internet gives musicians a golden opportunity to promote, distribute and sell their own music without relying exclusively on record labels," said Willis.  "It’s perfect for our band as we have a dedicated fan base that’s savvy in the ways of music technology."

"It’s easy to see why the Web is such a great marketing vehicle for up and coming and undiscovered bands," said Steve Beck, president of OnlineRock.  "Yet, as Ike proves, more and more established acts will decide to retain the rights to the digital distribution and sales of their music as they become ‘free agents’ and negotiate future contracts.

About OnlineRock

OnlineRock is an online music community with free tools and services for musicians, music professionals and music fans.  OnlineRock makes it easy for bands and musicians to promote, distribute and sell their music online.  The site provides free Web building and hosting services, chat rooms, bulletin boards, and editorial content of interest to musicians and music enthusiasts alike.  Founded in 1999, OnlineRock is based in Palo Alto, Calif.

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