Garth Brooks launches music download service

There’s a new ghost in the machine, and country music legend Garth Brooks hopes it will give musicians more control.

GhostTunes offers digital songs, similar to iTunes.

“You can download the music, but if you choose not to, you can stream it anytime,” GhostTunes COO Chris Webb told “Cityscape” host Steve Potter. “. “It’s a platform that we believe gives customers a bit more flexibility in choices and simultaneously gives the artist a bit more flexibility and choice as well.”

For artists, this flexibility includes how music is purchased.

“Garth thinks artists put a lot of time and work into creating an album. If they choose to sell in an album-only format, that should be their choice as creators,” Webb said. “At GhostTunes, if an artist chooses to sell only albums, that’s up to them and we allow them to do that. If they want to sell singles, great. We’ll sell them in that format as well.

Brooks is one of the artists who opted for album-only formats. It’s the first time his music, with hits dating back to 1989, has been released for digital download, including his latest, “Man Against the Machine,” which was released on November 11. Brooks is offering its complete catalog, which includes “Man Against the Machine” and a 2015 album, for $29.99 on GhostTunes.

While Brooks is the platforms’ biggest seller, Webb said the content is available from all major music labels and some independent labels.

“Pretty much any artist in the world that you can think of, we provide their content and their art, their music, through the platform,” Webb said.

The music platform also allows artists to promote and bundle merchandise and concert tickets.

“If they want to sell tickets alongside music, or if they have a book they’d like to sell alongside music, we really give them the freedom and flexibility to distribute however they want. wish,” Webb said.

Brooks is in St. Louis for a four-concert stop that kicked off Thursday.

“Cityscape” is produced by Mary Edwards and Alex Heuer and sponsored in part by the Missouri Arts Council, the Regional Arts Commission, and the Greater Saint-Louis Arts and Education Council.