Peter Kirn has a very interesting entry in his “create digital music” blog: Create Digital Music » As Other Music, Others Embrace Downloads, is Big, DRM-Laden Online Music Out?: “Listen to the mainstream press, and the story goes something like this: most online downloads have DRM. Then, major label EMI announced it would drop DRM from iTunes songs (for an additional per-song cost, at a higher bitrate). EMI, says this mainstream narrative, is the exception to the rule.
That’s missing an entirely separate narrative that’s unfolding, which is that many, many smaller labels are embracing new, smaller music stores.”
The article and especially the discussion that follows in the comments section is quite interesting to follow in the context of business models for recorded music.