New Holiday Compilation of Elton John’s Favorite Holiday Songs Includes New, Never-Before Released Duet with Elton John and Joss Stone

Starbucks and Universal Music Group Will Donate $2 For Every CD Sold To Support the Elton John AIDS Foundation

Seattle and Santa Monica; November 1, 2005 – Starbucks (NASDAQ: SBUX) Hear Music and Universal Music Group today announced plans to release and distribute Elton John’s Christmas Party, a collection of the GRAMMY®-winning artist’s favorite holiday party songs. The new holiday compilation contains 21 songs which were hand-selected by Elton John himself. The CD will be available exclusively at Starbucks Company-operated stores in the U.S. and Canada beginning on November 10, 2005. Starbucks and Universal Music Group will donate $2 for every CD sold to support the Elton John AIDS Foundation.

The album includes “Calling It Christmas,” an exclusive brand-new duet by Elton John and Joss Stone penned by Elton and longtime songwriting partner Bernie Taupin just for this collection. The CD’s liner notes, also written by Elton John, describe why he selected each song in the compilation.

Among the holiday songs Elton John picked as his party favorites are Chuck Berry’s “Run Rudolph Run,” Bruce Springsteen’s 1981 version of “Santa Claus Is Coming To Town,” the Eagles’ 1978 Adult Contemporary hit of “Please Come Home For Christmas,” Jimmy Buffett’s 1996 anthem “Christmas Island,” Rufus Wainwright’s 2003 chamber pop entry “Spotlight On Christmas” and Elton’s own 1973 No. 1 pop smash “Step Into Christmas.” Along with conventional holiday songs, Elton John also includes several songs which capture the spirit of the season, including U2’s “New Year’s Day,” John Mayer’s “St. Patrick’s Day” and Outkast’s “Playa’s Ball.”

“Music plays a more important part at Christmas than at any other time of the year. It is the only season that has its own genre of music,” explained Elton John. “Recently it has become de rigueur to do a Christmas album. But I do not want to do one. I would rather compile this album of my favorite Christmas songs by my favorite artists.”

“This special, exclusive holiday CD compilation offers our customers unique insight into Elton John’s personal musical tastes while providing the perfect soundtrack for their holiday gatherings,” said Ken Lombard, president, Starbucks Entertainment. “We are delighted to join with Universal to donate money from each CD sold to benefit the Elton John AIDS Foundation.”

“We are pleased to be able to develop with Elton and Starbucks Hear Music such a worthwhile project,” explains Kathy Hale, Sr. VP, Universal Music Special Markets. “We were able to offer a phenomenally high quality selection of artists and recordings to attract album buyers and, in turn, help in the fight against AIDS.”

Elton John’s Christmas Party will also be available for sale online at beginning on November 10, 2005.

Track Listing for Elton John’s Christmas Party:

1. Step Into Christmas Elton John
2. Feliz Navidad El Vez
3. Frosty the Snowman The Ronettes
4. Santa Claus Is Coming to Town Bruce Springsteen
5. The Man with All the Toys The Beach Boys
6. A Change at Christmas (Say It Isn’t So) The Flaming Lips
7. It Doesn’t Often Snow at Christmas Pet Shop Boys
8. Spotlight on Christmas Rufus Wainwright
9. Jingle Bell Rock The Ventures
10. Run Rudolph Run Chuck Berry
11. Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer The Crystals
12. Playa’s Ball Outkast
13. Merry Christmas Baby Otis Redding
14. Christmas Island Jimmy Buffett
15. St. Patrick’s Day John Mayer
16. Please Come Home for Christmas The Eagles
17. Christmas Must Be Tonight The Band
18. 2000 Miles The Pretenders
19. December Will Be Magic Again Kate Bush
20. New Year’s Day U2
21. Calling It Christmas Elton John & Joss Stone

About The Elton John AIDS Foundation

The Elton John AIDS Foundation (EJAF) is one of the world’s leading nonprofit organizations supporting innovative HIV/AIDS prevention education programs and direct care services to people living with HIV/AIDS.

Since its establishment in 1992 by founder and chairman Sir Elton John, EJAF has distributed over $60 million to HIV/AIDS prevention and service programs in 55 countries around the globe.

For more information about the Elton John AIDS Foundation, go to

About Starbucks Hear Music

Founded in 1990, and acquired by Starbucks Coffee Company in 1999, Starbucks Hear Music is the voice of music at Starbucks. Starbucks Hear Music is dedicated to creating a new and convenient way for consumers to discover, experience and acquire all genres of great music through its CD compilations and music programming for Starbucks coffeehouses worldwide, as well as its innovative partnerships with other music labels to produce, market and distribute both exclusive and non-exclusive music. In 2004, Starbucks Hear Music launched a 24-hour digital music channel with XM Satellite Radio (XM Channel 75), the Starbucks Hear Music™ Coffeehouse in Santa Monica where customers can select from over 15,000 CDs or burn their own custom mixes, and the Starbucks Hear Music™ media bars, a service that offers custom CD burning at select Starbucks retail locations in Seattle and Austin. Starbucks Hear Music™ CDs are featured at Hear Music and Starbucks retail locations, as well as online at

About Starbucks Coffee Company

Starbucks Corporation is the leading retailer, roaster and brand of specialty coffee in the world, with more than 10,000 retail locations in North America, Latin America, Europe, the Middle East and the Pacific Rim. The Company is committed to offering the highest quality coffee and the Starbucks Experience while conducting its business in ways that produce social, environmental and economic benefits for communities in which it does business. In addition to its retail operations, the Company produces and sells bottled Frappuccino® coffee drinks, Starbucks DoubleShot® coffee drink, and a line of superpremium ice creams through its joint venture partnerships. The Company’s brand portfolio provides a wide variety of consumer products–innovative superpremium Tazo® teas and exceptional compact discs from Starbucks Hear Music enhance the Starbucks Experience through best-of-class products. The Seattle’s Best Coffee® and Torrefazione Italia® Coffee brands enable Starbucks to appeal to a broader consumer base by offering an alternative variety of coffee flavor profiles.

About Universal Music Special Markets

Universal Music Special Markets, a division of Universal Music Enterprises (Ume), is responsible for maximizing catalog repertoire opportunities through non-traditional, alternative and ancillary channels as well as audio licensing, premium/custom sales and budget releases.

UMe represents the largest catalog in the U.S. of recorded music with recordings from the world’s greatest artists. Among the legendary artists are ABBA, Aerosmith, Louis Armstrong, Chuck Berry, James Brown, Carpenters, Eric Clapton, Patsy Cline, John Coltrane, Bing Crosby, Ella Fitzgerald, Four Tops, Judy Garland, Marvin Gaye, Jimi Hendrix, Billie Holiday, Buddy Holly, Jackson 5, The Mamas & The Papas, Bob Marley, Bill Monroe, Van Morrison, Nirvana, The Police, Smokey Robinson, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Cat Stevens, Rod Stewart, The Supremes, The Temptations, Conway Twitty, Muddy Waters, Hank Williams, and The Who.

UMe is a division of Universal Music Group, the world’s largest music company with wholly owned record operations or licensees in 77 countries. Its businesses also include Universal Music Publishing Group, one of the industry’s largest global music publishing operations.

Universal Music Group consists of record labels Decca Record Company, Deutsche Grammophon, DreamWorks Records, Interscope Geffen A&M Records, Island Def Jam Music Group, Lost Highway Records, MCA Nashville, Mercury Nashville, Mercury Records, Philips, Polydor, Universal Music Latino, Universal Motown Records Group, and Verve Music Group as well as a multitude of record labels owned or distributed by its record company subsidiaries around the world. The Universal Music Group owns the most extensive catalog of music in the industry, which is marketed through two distinct divisions, Universal Music Enterprises (in the U.S.) and Universal Strategic Marketing (outside the U.S.). Universal Music Group also includes eLabs, a new media and technologies division.

Universal Music Group is a unit of Vivendi Universal, a global media and communications company