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Carving a Niche in Digital Music Distribution

The Orchard's early insight into digital distribution of music is proving bountiful -- and helping independent musicians get on the radar.

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This story appears in the May 2011 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

In the late 1990s, when having a dial-up line wouldn't get you laughed out of the room and iTunes was just a glimmer in Steve Jobs' eye, Richard Gottehrer, a distributor of independent music to online retailers like Amazon and CDnow, began adding digital distribution rights to the contracts he offered. At the time, no one blinked an eye. The music industry was skeptical that digital downloading would ever usurp CDs and physical media as the kings of music.

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