Apple Inc. has announced that it has struck a deal with EMI Group Plc to offer 16 solo albums from the late John Lennon’s music collection. This marks the first time that any John Lennon solo albums have been made available online and represents a digital debut on iTunes.
The deal is reportedly similar to the one reached with iTunes by Paul McCartney, and it is expected that solo works will also be released for iTunes by Ringo Starr and the estate of the late George Harrison. The Beatles music group has been hesitant to embrace new technology, and there has been the difficulty of reaching consensus among Ringo Starr and Paul McCartney and the estates of Lennon and Harrison.
The surviving members of The Beatles and the estates of Lennon and Harrison recently settled a long legal dispute with Apple Inc. in February 2007 over the Apple trademark between Apple and Apple Corps Ltd., the Beatles' company.
George Harrison’s widow and Yoko Ono, Lennon’s widow, are both expected to support the distribution and sale of an online Beatles music catalog, which should clear the way for a digital release of the Beatles’ vast music collection.
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