The Beatles’ music catalogue might finally be available for streaming within the next week, according to Billboard. In particular, Spotify, Apple Music, Tidal, Deezer, and Slacker are mentioned, although none is specifically singled-out as a definite.
The article, which cites “sources with knowledge of the negotiations”, particularly points the finger at Dec 24, with “Hey Jude” being the first track to go live.
For older Beatles fans it might sound odd that just one song to go live before the rest, but it actually makes sense. Such a tactic would afford the iconic band a good chance of de-throning Justin Bieber’s Spotify record; his song “What Do You Mean?” was streamed more than 21 million times over a five day period in 2015, beating out One Direction for the top spot.
If all songs by The Beatles went live simultaneously, the numbers would certainly spread out across the catalogue, leaving no chance to make streaming history. And if there’s anything The Beatles need, it’s another industry record.
One of the last hold-outs
The Beatles, as a band, has been the champion among the ranks of ‘old school’ acts that have struggled to keep up with changing technologies. It took six years to make its music available on the iTunes music store, selling over two million copies in the first week once it finally did.
Other acts, such as Led Zeppelin and AC/DC have recently made the move to streaming services. Eventually The Beatles will have to follow suit, or risk a needless decline in sales as more people turn to subscriptions for their music fix.
It makes sense, then, that a deal such as the one described by Billboard could be in the works. In fact, it’s so plausible that we might even allow ourselves some cautious optimism that Christmas will come a little early this year.