Fans are eagerly awaiting the release of Jay-Z and Kanye West's joint collaboration 'Watch the Throne,' set to hit iTunes exclusively on August 8 and digital retailers on August 12, but not everyone is pleased with the impending effort.

On Thursday (July 28), the team who created Record Store Day -- a day independently owned record stores come together with artists to celebrate the art of music -- devised a letter that announced their displeasure in the 'Watch the Throne' release strategy. The open letter, which has amassed more than 50 signatures from indie store representatives and will reportedly be published in a forthcoming issue of Billboard magazine, details the "great damage" excluding the stores and limiting the initial LP release to iTunes and Best Buy will do.

"We know that you are busy, and that you put most of your energies into creating great music, but we are writing to you in the hope that you will hear us and take the time to rectify this matter," the letter reads. "As representatives of the independent record store music community, we are asking you to allow record stores and music fans equal access to your new album."

watchthethrone.com


Read the full letter below.

Dear Jay-Z and Kanye West,

Independent record stores serve our communities. Our passion is music, and

we convey this to the millions of customers who come to our stores. That's

what we do.

Four years ago independent music stores across the country banded together

to create Record Store Day. Our goal was to counter the negative media

coverage about the supposed demise of record stores brought on by the

closing of the Tower stores and to respond to the music business practices

that fans deemed to be manipulative and onerous.

We reached out to the artist community to see if they would join us, and the

response was overwhelming with words of support coming in from Paul

McCartney, Erykah Badu, Tom Waits, Chuck D, the Foo Fighters and countless

others. Working with their label partners, many of these musicians created

limited edition works of art, including vinyl and CDs made especially for

music specialty retail. Hundreds of these artists took the opportunity to

perform, DJ, and interact with their fans in our record stores. Here in the

US, Record Store Day lifted the entire music business by 8% and contributed

to the growth in music sales. Record Store Day is now one of the biggest

music events in history with millions of people participating worldwide. We

also continue to work throughout the year with labels, artists and managers

and run regular promotions via physical independent retail and

recordstoreday.com.

We are responding to the bad news that your new album will not be available

to independent record stores until after iTunes gets a window of

exclusivity. We also learned that the deluxe version (which is what the true

music fans who shop our stores will want by an overwhelming majority) will

only be available at Best Buy exclusively for a period of time. We believe

this is a short-sighted strategy, and that your decisions will be doing

great damage to over 1,700 independent record stores -- stores that have

supported you and your music for years.

We know that you are busy, and that you put most of your energies into

creating great music, but we are writing to you in the hope that you will

hear us and take the time to rectify this matter. As representatives of the

independent record store music community, we are asking you to allow record

stores and music fans equal access to your new album.

With the utmost respect,

Dedry Jones, The Music Experience

Mike Dreese, Newbury Comics

Judy Negley, Independent Records

Mike Batt, Silver Platters

Tobago Benito, DBS Sounds

Brian Faber, Zia Records

Karen Pearson, Amoeba Music

Bryan Burkert, The Sound Garden

Mike Wise, Monster

Rob Roth, Vintage Vinyl

Joe Nardone, Jr., Gallery of Sound

Jonathan Fernandez, Rasputin Music

Dilyn Radakovitz, Dimple Records

Dustin Hansen, Graywhale Entertainment

Bill Kennedy, BK Music

Jim Bland, Plan Nine

Steve Wilson, Kiefs

Tom King, Central Square Records

Alayna Hill Alderman, Richard Storms, Record Archive

Karl Groeger, Looney Tunes

Paul Epstein, Twist and Shout

Nancy Salzer, Salzer's Records

Rick Ziegler, Indy CD

Laura, Finders Records

Deon Borchard, Nic Fritze, The Long Ear

Chuck Oken, Rhino /Mad Platter

Allan Miller, John Bevis, Disc Exchange

Charlotte Kubat, Magnolia Thunderpussy

John Kunz, Waterloo Records

Chris Avino, Rainbow Records

Mike Fratt, Homers

Rich Koch, Off the Record

Skip Hermans, Skip's Record and CD World

Jason Patton, Oz Music

Quinn Bishop, Cactus Records

John Timmons, ear X tacy

Lou Russell, Lou's Records

Roger Weiss, Streetlight Records

Terry Currier, Music Millenium

Andrew Chinnici, Lakeshore Record Exchange

Michael Bunnell, The Record Exchange

Mike White, Boo Boo Records

Steve Baron, CD Central

Eric Levin, Criminal Records

Pat O'connor, Culture Clash

Dan Plunkett, End Of An Ear

Paula Kret, Exile On Main St

Chris Penn, Good Records

Doyle Davis, Grimey's

Travis Searle, Guestroom Records

Jim Mcguinn, Hot Poop

Isaac Slusarenko, Jackpot Records

Jason Nickey & Heath Byers, Landlocked Music

Todd Robinson, Luna Music

Darren & Jim Blase, Shake It

Anna & Chris Brozek, Slowtrain

Kimber Lanning, Stinkweeds

Tom "Papa" Ray, Vintage Vinylgg