How sweet it is: Starbucks launches independent music label "Hear Music"

The Starbucks coffee chain has officially formed their own music label Hear Music, in conjunction with Concord recordings. Albums released on the Hear Music label will feature up and coming artists and well established acts for sale both in Starbucks shops and at other retailers.

Hear Music expects to release its first album by the end of 2007. The Hear Music label began in 1999, mainly responsible for sale of compilation albums, scoring a smash hit with Ray Charles' 2002 release Genius Loves Company, an album of duets.

There are unconfirmed reports that Sir Paul McCartney has signed with Hear Music for his new album.