When we last checked on the progress between the Two Apples (as in the Apple that owns iTunes and Apple Corps, the company that handles the business end of the Beatles’ music), things were looking good. Sir Paul McCartney had inked a $400 million deal to distribute the Beatles’ music on iTunes through its label, EMI. Then a Beatles Rock Band-esque video game was announced that suggested the band had already digitized its music.
Now, McCartney is saying that the process to put Beatles music on iTunes has “stalled.”
“The last word I got back was it’s stalled at the whole moment, the whole process,” the former Beatle said. “I really hope it will happen because I think it should.”
So what happened? There isn’t a wealth of information at the moment, as none of the involved companies are willing to make an official statement. Unofficially, however, an EMI spokeswoman, on condition of anonymity, tells the Associated Press, “We have been working hard to secure agreement with Apple Corps. to make the Beatles’ legendary recording catalog available to fans in digital form. Unfortunately the various parties involved have been unable to reach agreement but we really hope everyone can make progress soon.”
It sounds as though the snafu exists between the two record labels and not Apple’s iTunes. And while it’s disappointing to yet again hear of a setback in this long-awaited deal, it’s not at all surprising.