Beatles finally join download generation
'Beatles for Sale' is finally for sale on iTunes -- along with the rest of the Fab Four's albums, from 'Please Please Me' to 'Revolver' to 'Abbey Road'.
The Beatles had been the most prominent band to stay off iTunes and other online music services. But yesterday Apple Inc said its iTunes store would start selling downloads of songs and albums from the group, in an agreement with the Beatles' recording label, EMI, and its management company, Apple Corps.
Apple will sell 13 remastered Beatles studio albums, the two-volume 'Past Masters' set and the classic 'Red' and 'Blue' collections.
Apple is also selling a special digital box set that includes a download of the 41-minute movie of the Beatles' first US concert, 'Live at the Washington Coliseum, 1964'.
Until yesterday, Apple Corps had resisted selling Beatles music as online downloads. The situation was exacerbated by a long-running trademark dispute between Apple Inc and Apple Corps. It was resolved in 2007 when the companies agreed on joint use of the apple logo and name.
With the Beatles now in Apple's music store, the number of holdouts has dwindled. Garth Brooks, Kid Rock and AC/DC are among the remaining artists who refuse to sell their work through Apple. Some want more control over pricing or the ability to force shoppers to download entire albums.
In a press release, former band members and their relatives all gave the deal their blessings. "I am particularly glad to no longer be asked when the Beatles are coming to iTunes," Ringo Starr said.
The deal gives Apple a PR boost in the run-up to Christmas.