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Musicmaker.com, Tunes.Com in Deal for Download Site

Musicmaker.com a custom CD and digital download provider, and music network Tunes.com signed a letter of intent for a five-year marketing alliance to create a secure digital download and custom CD Internet music destination.

Musicmaker.com will provide secure downloadable music for sale at Tunes.com, and will be the exclusive provider of customized CD compilations on the Tunes.com network of sites, including RollingStone.com, TheSource.com and DownBeatJazz.com.

Musicmaker.com will commit to spend $5 million over five years for advertising and promotion of its products and services on the Tunes.com sites. The companies have also agreed to exchange shares of stock, with each company acquiring shares valued at $5 million.

Visitors to the Tunes sites will be able to create personalized CDs or download songs directly to their PCs by selecting songs from musicmaker.com's library of about 200,000 tracks from over 100 record labels.

Musicmaker.com also has an exclusive, five-year licensing agreement for the music catalogue of EMI, one of the world's largest music companies. Musicmaker.com said it expects EMI to contribute about 500,000 songs from its extensive catalogue, for digital distribution on the Web.

"Downloadable music and customizable CDs have emerged as the most important grass roots movement in music since FM radio," said Bob Bernardi, chairman and co-CEO of Reston, VA-based Musicmaker.com. "Our alliance with Tunes.com will help musicmaker.com become the leading brand for digital distribution of music on the Internet."

"There will be eight major manufacturers releasing secure, portable Internet music players by the holidays," said Howard A. Tullman, chairman and CEO of Tunes.com.

"Our goal with musicmaker.com is to give consumers a large selection of music from which they can purchase for custom compilations or as secure downloads."