Opinion: Please, please me and put The Beatles on iTunes!

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Jon_smal.gifJonathan Weinberg writes…

Help, I need somebody, help, not just anybody, help, you know I need someone… who can blooming well tell me if we are ever going to be able to buy Beatles songs on the interweb!

I’m not one of those nuts who says they’re the greatest band in the world, but I can understand why it’s so important to have their tunes in digital form. After all, there’s millions of people out there who’d listen to the Liverpudlian Fab Four eight days a week if they could.

For Apple and Sir Paul McCartney, it’s a major money-spinner but also a worry. A mass release of Beatles tracks would see them fill the top 40, with a potential top 10 chart totally Beatles-filled. That’d be bad for the music industry so I can appreciate the reservations of many. It’d be much easier to release them in waves, otherwise we’d all be having a hard day’s night sitting in front of our PCs or Macs trying to download dozens of them at once.

The Beatles albums are certainly among the greatest ever made and it’s an insult to all fans of music not to have them embracing the digital age. It’d certainly be welcome news for every day tripper out there. Last week the iPod was placed as the No. 1 thing backpackers take away with them when they’ve got a ticket to ride and so having access to such a massive back catalogue would keep them going all the way from Penny Lane to their underwater excursion on that yellow submarine.

But at the moment, the too-ing and fro-ing around this issue is becoming ridiculous. It’s like a merry-go-round with Beatles fans saying hello, goodbye to their chances of downloads every few hours.

Yesterday, the news was the release was set to go ahead. Now Michael Jackson – who owns the rights to a lot of the songs – seems to be unhappy at bringing them out.

Why on earth would he be against it? He needs the money, surely? From me to you I say, get back Michael, get back to where you once belong. You’re a musician, can’t you see the logic in letting fans have access to such a wealth of musical history?!

We can work it out, Michael! Just look at lady Madonna, she’s embracing the 21st century technology. Take a leaf from her book, and come together with every Beatles fan around the globe, including Eleanor Rigby.

Maybe all you need is love, but you can’t buy me love, and you can’t buy a Beatles song on the internet either and that’s so depressing.

The long and winding road of this saga shows no sign of coming to an end. I want to hold your hand and offer up a prayer to the skies so that the dark clouds masking this issue part and we can finally say… here comes the sun.

But I feel fine because I’m pretty certain the might of Apple and Sir Paul will win out. Something will happen. But then I’m a mere paperback writer of sorts so what do I know.

Perhaps I need to let it be but I just fear we’re still going to be having this same discussion, when I’m 64!

Jonathan Weinberg not only contributes to Tech Digest, but heads up many of our football blogs.

Jonathan Weinberg