HMV Protests Dylan

Record retailer HMV Canada has pulled all Bob Dylan products from its stores to protest the musician’s exclusive deal with Starbucks to sell his new album, Live at the Gaslight 1962.

HMV Canada President Humphrey Kadaner confirmed that effective August 30th (the day Dylan’s exclusive deal went into effect), HMV removed all Dylan products from the shelves of its 108 stores. He added that the Toronto-based retailer would not actively stock or promote Dylan in any of the stores.

“Bob Dylan chose to exclude HMV and our loyal customers from access to Live at the Gaslight 1962,” Kadaner told Pollstar. “We have no issue with Starbucks carrying this album nor any other album. What we do have an issue with is our consumers not being given the choice of purchasing the CD at the retailer of their choice.”

HMV Canada has been consistent in its stance on exclusive retail agreements. When The Rolling Stones, Alanis Morissette, and Elton John inked similar deals, the retailer removed products from those artists as well.

“If the artist decides that HMV and our loyal customers don’t deserve access to all of their music, then we have decided that the artist in question does not deserve access to our stores,” Kadaner said.

He added that in a previous survey involving nearly 10,000 HMV patrons, the majority objected to major artist retail exclusives.

Mitchell Peters