UPDATE: Nielsen representatives say they have no knowledge of T-shirt, and won't be tracking numbers yet.
In an impressive move to go away from the norm, Mos Def is sellinga t-shirt as his new album. Instead of getting a disk, fans will get a shirt with cover art on the front and a track list on the back. This shirt will not come with a CD. Instead, it will feature a code for each fan to use in order to download the album off the internet for free.
The concept may just work for Mos Def's sales, which are presently approaching 40,000 units of The Ecstatic [click to read]. In a surprising move, Soundscan is said to actually count the t-shirt sales as album sales.
"It's taking an album and turning it into a t-shirt," designer Jeremy Wineberg, president of Invisible DJ told Digital Music News this week [click here]. "Each shirt comes with a digital download tag carrying a unique code and is manufactured by clothing company LnA."
How else does it help to have an artist make his album available through a site like lnaclothing.com?
"You're bypassing the middleman, like iTunes," Wineberg added.
According to Wineberg, fans will start seeing this shirt next month.
UPDATE: Representatives from Nielsen, the company behind Soundscan, contacted HipHopDX Friday morning. While the spokesperson said Nielsen would reportedly like more information from Invisible DJ and like-minded companies, they have no existing knowledge, and thus have no intention of tracking or recording units sold.