Written by Cyrus Langhorne

Distributor EMI will become the latest company venturing in to the e-commerce world with the premiere of their upcoming digital service website, EMI.com, launching this winter.

According to Variety, the mega-distributor is constructing an online site that will allow users the ability to check out an artist and instantly be given a set of recommended artists. Focused on being more discovery-based, the company will also provide various free downloads and other promotional offers with the possibility of a social-networking feature added to its presentation.

Known for distribution of popular labels including Capitol, Virgin and Blue Note, a source told Variety the new business venture is not an attempt to contend with major music retailers.

"This is not an effort to displace iTunes, Amazon or any other retailer partner."

While details are still emerging, the overall advantage for the program will be to allow music fans to search for a particular artist using Google or Yahoo, and be given to opportunity to choose the EMI site in addition to the artist's own personal home pages or MySpace sites.

Artists under the EMI blanket include MIMS, Corinne Bailey Rae, J. Holiday, Alfamega, Fat Joe, N.E.R.D., Beastie Boys, LeToya Luckett, Cherish and others.

The EMI digital music site is currently scheduled to launch this December.