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Beatles catalog finally available online

of the Oakland Press

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A long and winding road has ended for Beatles fans; the group's music is now available for digital purchase on iTunes.

The deal was announced Tuesday (Nov. 16), bringing all 13 of the Fab Four's studio albums, the two-volume "Past Masters" sets and the "Red" and "Blue" compilations online at $1.29 per song, $12.99 for single albums and $19.99 for double albums.

A special "Beatles Box Set," priced at $149, features the 13 studio albums, the "Past Masters" sets and "Live at the WAshington Coliseum, 1964," the first-ever Beatles concert film released in its entirety in the U.S. A trailer for the film will be streamed at www.itunes.com for the rest of the year.

In a statement, Paul McCartney said that, "We're really excited to bring the Beatles' music to iTunes. It's fantastic to see the songs we originally released on vinyl receive as much love in the digital world as they did the first time around." Ringo Starr added that he's "particularly glad to no longer be asked when the Beatles are coming to iTunes. At last, if you want it-you can get it now-The Beatles from Liverpool to now! Peace and Love, Ringo."

John Lennon's widow Yoko Ono commented that, "in the joyful spirit of Give Peace A Chance, I think it is so appropriate that we are doing this on John's 70th birthday year," while George Harrison's widow Olivia simply said, "The Beatles on iTunes-Bravo!"

Fans have long waited for the Beatles catalog to go online, but plans have been held up over negotiations between the group and its record company, EMI, over royalty compensation. Other Beatles titles and compilations are expected to become available at iTunes in the future.

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