Fiddling Around with Classical Music Online

Last week, GlobalNet Systems announced that violinist Itzhak Perlman has joined its subsidiary On-Line Entertainment Network as consultant and advisory boardmember. The company says that Mr. Perlman will consult on its acquisition and production of live classical-music events and the licensing of master catalogs of recorded classical music. He also joins an advisory board that will advise on future trends and opportunities for the company. The company intends to add other major artists to its advisory board in coming months.

According to OEN, their network specializes in the netcasting and recording of live concert events on the bases of sponsorship, advertising, and, in the cases of some major artists, pay-per-listen netcasts. Additionally, the company says it offers full tracks and CDs of pre-recorded music and other audio programs on a pay-per-listen basis, as well as archived versions of OEN's live programs.

To do this, OEN says it delivers "CD-quality audio" into its customers' homes using "a specialized audio processing system." The company's streaming audio tracks cover several genres of music, comedy, drama, and other audio programming. The company also says it intends to incorporate music-downloading capabilities once the major record labels have approved an encryption method for such downloads.

Mr. Perlman states that "I have listened to and compared OEN to the other music sites and I am extremely impressed and excited with the sound quality of OEN. I believe the company has the unique combination of true CD-quality sound, management with a strong background in the music industry and live recording, and the necessary vision to bring an exceptional Internet music experience into the consumer's home."

Gabriel Palka, director of OEN's classical division, claims that "The fact that maestro Perlman has chosen and prefers our sound quality over the other music sites on the Internet—says it all! Our superior sound quality, with no downloading, is OEN's solution to the industry's piracy problem."