Alicia Keys fans will have another reason to compulsively check her Facebook fan page today: Keys is releasing her new album The Element of Freedom exclusively through the world’s largest social network. Fans will be able to tune in to her Facebook Fan page beginning today, where they’ll be able to stream the album free of charge (though they won’t be able to download digitial copies). The album’s “real” release date isn’t until December 15. This marks the first time a world-famous artist has debuted their album through the site. Keys is using a new Facebook app from Involver, a company that helps brands connect through social media, to power the launch.
Now, it isn’t unheard of for artists to debut albums and songs through the web, but this has long been an area dominated by MySpace. MySpace still sees its share of exclusives, but in the last few months Facebook has been getting an increasing amount of attention from artists. We’ve recently seen Chamillionaire and Sharkira release their new music videos exclusively though Ustream/Facebook, and there have been a number of big-name concerts streamed through the site as well.
The company powering the launch is called Involver, which has built out a strong selection of widgets and applications that brands can use to help engage users on Facebook. Involver has powered the Facebook fan pages of over 20,000 companies, including big names like Nike, TIME, Microsoft, Guitar Center, and Snapple (you can see more of thekir clients here. The album stream is powered by a new Involver app called Music for Pages.