“Technology entrepreneur Pierre Schwob thinks Bach and Beethoven haven’t been given their due in the digital age,” writes John Jurgensen in Friday’s (5/8) Wall Street Journal. “Classical Archives, a new digital store focused exclusively on classical music, is Mr. Schwob’s answer to mass-market digital retailers with ‘a complete lack of understanding of how classical music should be offered,’ down to the way they often categorize recordings. ‘It’s basically a lack of respect when you say Bach is an “artist,” not a composer,’ Mr. Schwob says. For example, when online shoppers type ‘Beethoven’ into iTunes, the top results they get back include a rock medley by the Trans-Siberian Orchestra, an uncredited recording of ‘Für Elise’ and individual movements culled from greatest hits collections.” iTunes has a large selection of classical music, but the search function is not set up to accommodate “composer” as a separate category. “Classical music came late to the digital-music revolution, but the genre is poised to play catch-up as a crop of specialty music sellers jockey to meet the demands of core listeners. With a test version already online, Classical Archives officially opens May 19.”

Posted May 8, 2009