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Apple has partnered with Taylor Swift to deliver a concert video of her 1989 World Tour exclusive to Apple Music, as well as an extended holiday season promotion in Apple retail stores and on iTunes gift cards and an appearance on Beats 1 Radio.
Swift is scheduled to appear on Apple's Beats 1 radio program, tomorrow Monday December 14, at 9 AM Pacific Time (12 noon Eastern, 5 PM in the UK), where she will be speaking with DJ Zane Lowe.
Today is Swift's 26th birthday. The singer posted a message to her Tumbr stating, "Thank you so much for all the birthday wishes! I have a little surprise for you. The 1989 World Tour LIVE. Directed by Jonas Akerlund, released on @applemusic December 20, 2015."
The posting links to iTunes, which notes that the tour video, filmed in Sydney, Australia at the ANZ Stadium "in front of 76,000 fans" will be "available exclusively on Apple Music starting December 20."
iTunes Connect provides a preview of the video, which depicts the stadium crowd wearing color coordinated LED-lit wristbands, and the concert itself featuring appearances by Mick Jagger, Selena Gomez, Fetty Wap, Miranda Lambert, Alanis Morissette, Wiz Kalifa, Mary J Blige, John Legend, Justin Timberlake, Beck and St Vincent.
The video invites watchers to subscribe to Apple Music (or join its free 90-day trial) to see the concert video. According to a report by Re/Code, Swift will also be lending Apple the rights to her name and likeness "in promotions at its stores, where it will have big displays as well as Taylor Swift-branded iTunes gift cards for sales [sic]."
Writing for the site, Peter Kafka added, "My understanding is that because the deal is about Swift's concert, not her album, this is a deal between her and Apple directly. Big Machine, the label that owns her stuff, and Universal Music Group, the label that distributes it, aren't in on it."
[Correction: Jake Basden of Big Machine Label Group clarified to AppleInsider that "Taylor Swift records exclusively for Big Machine Records/BMLG under her existing ERA (Exclusive Recording Agreement). Big Machine Records/BMLG is the sole and exclusive owner of all recordings of Taylor's musical performances, whether they are audio only or audiovisual. It has come to our attention that there are stories claiming Taylor's exclusive content agreement with Apple was done without the participation of Big Machine Records/BMLG. That is simply incorrect."]
In June, Swift (along with the labels that own her music) "happily" agreed to make her latest "1989" album available for streaming on Apple Music (as well as in iTunes for sale) after prodding Apple to pay royalties to artists for music tracks streamed during users' free trial periods, a request Apple's iTunes head Eddy Cue quickly jumped to satisfy.