The Jonas Brothers, that family of mop-topped teen pop-rockers who seem to be just about everywhere these days, are going to be debuting their new single on Facebook this Thursday.
They'll be performing the new song, "Paranoid," in the first of four Webcasts created with a Ustream app for the Facebook platform. Fans can access it by navigating to the band's Facebook fan page. The Jonas Brothers, who also were poster boys for the debut of the MySpace Music service, also will answer questions from fans and talk about their upcoming tour. That's at 5 p.m. PDT on Thursday; they'll host three more Webcasts on May 14, 21, and 28.
Over a million people have signed up as Jonas Brothers "fans" on the band's official Facebook page, but considering Facebook has over 200 million active users, that's a fairly small number. This promotional effort will undoubtedly shine a brighter spotlight on Facebook fan pages, which the social network has been hyping up a lot with a fresh redesign and prominent placement in the "streams" of members' home pages.
There is, however, a more significant impact to this announcement than just the synergy of one of this decade's biggest music sensations (I guess they're kind of like this generation's Hanson, right?) and one of its biggest tech sensations. "This marks the first time a U.S. musical artist is debuting a new song via a live Webcast series on their Facebook Page," a statement from Facebook read.
Yet song debuts are nothing new to the social-networking world: Debuting the stream of a new single or album on a social music site like MySpace Music, iLike, Imeem, and Last.fm (owned by CNET News publisher CBS Interactive) has become a regular promotional stop for artists looking to spread the buzz about new releases. Many of these services have a heavy presence on Facebook's third-party application platform, and Facebook even partnered with one of the most popular, iLike, to debut a Thievery Corporation album last year.
There have been rumors over and over again that Facebook was looking to start a music service of its own, or maybe to acquire one of the popular music apps on its platform. That hasn't come to fruition. But does this new move mean Facebook is starting to compete directly with some of the music applications that have made its platform so popular? Maybe.
We'll see when those totally dreamy Jonas Brothers show up there on Thursday.