Frank Ocean's Apple Music releases last week may have inadvertently affected Lady Gaga's future album release - in a negative way.
Ocean released the visual album Endless as an Apple Music exclusive last Friday, his last album with Def Jam Recordings, a record label owned by Universal Music Group (The R&B singer had previously requested to be released from his contract, which was accepted).
The singer then self-released another album, blond, last Saturday, only a day after the release of Endless. This was apparently a blindside for UMG, and caused chairman and CEO Lucian Grainge to cease all of its artists from exclusive deals, particularly with Apple Music.
Now this is where Gaga comes in. There's a new report via Hits Daily Double that Gaga had been planning some type of Apple exclusive for her new music.
"Is what happened last week between Frank Ocean, UMG and Apple game-changing? It certainly was for Universal, in that it triggered Lucian Grainge's mandating an end to all exclusives-notably including a deal that had been in place between Apple, Lady Gaga and Interscope," they report.
Interscope is also owned by UMG, and if this report is true, Gaga may have to find an alternative route for releasing her highly anticipated fifth studio album.
The pop star recently announced the title of the album's lead single as "Perfect Illusion". Gaga announced this on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and her own website, with colorful banners revealing that the single will be released in September. The specific day in September is still not known.
Unlike many of her contemporaries, Gaga has not taken part in exclusive streaming deals in the past, so it's possible at this point that we may just get a standard album release from the pop superstar. Nothing has been confirmed by Gaga, her team or UMG about a new plan for releasing her fifth album, which has been colloquially referred to as "LG5" by fans.