Yoko Ono: Beatles and iTunes deal 'still at impasse'

Don't hold your breath waiting for Beatles songs to go on sale at iTunes or other online retailers, Yoko Ono said yesterday.

The Fab Four have long resisted the allure of digital downloads, instead selling millions of old-fashioned compact discs last year after remastering the catalogue.



Apple Corps, the group's holding company has been unable to agree on terms with EMI Group, which licenses the Beatles' recordings. And then there's the unrelated Apple, owner of iTunes, the world's largest music retailer.



Apple and Apple have had a difficult history over rights to the name. But that trademark dispute was settled in 2007, and speculation has regularly popped up ever since that the two companies would strike an iTunes deal.



"(Apple CEO) Steve Jobs has his own idea and he's a brilliant guy," Ono, the 77-year-old widow of John Lennon, told Reuters. "There's just an element that we're not very happy about, as people. We are holding out.



"Don't hold your breath ... for anything," she said with a laugh.

Ono, who was promoting an upcoming public television documentary about her husband, "LENNONYC," declined to go into detail. Former member Paul McCartney was similarly vague in 2008 when he said there were "a couple of sticking points."



Ono said her comments did not necessarily reflect the opinions of the three other equal shareholders in Apple Corps -- McCartney, bandmate Ringo Starr and Olivia Harrison, the widow of George Harrison. But she added that the infamous rancor of the past has been replaced by smooth consensus because "we're older and more experienced."



Apple Corps may be reluctant to enter the digital age, but the company is far more open to new ideas that it was in the past, Ono said. The company's day-to-day operations are run from London by Jeff Jones, a former Sony Music executive who took over as CEO in 2007.



She said Jones was an "action person," while his late predecessor Neil Aspinall - who worked with the Beatles for 40 years - kept the Beatles "elite and closed-off," which served its purpose at the time.



Jones has overseen not only the reissue of the Beatles catalogue, but also a "Beatles: Rock Band" videogame. The band's music has also been getting a new life in a Cirque du Soleil "Love" stage show that has been running in Las Vegas since 2006.



Ono was reluctant to discuss upcoming Beatle-related activities, but has plenty of projects in the works to commemorate Lennon's 70th birthday on 9 October, and the 30th anniversary of his murder on 8 December.



"LENNONYC" will premiere nationally on 22 November, as part of PBS' "American Masters" series. It focuses on the couple's time together in New York from 1971 to 1980, boasting previously unseen video footage and unheard studio recordings from sessions for his final album, "Double Fantasy."



That album will be reissued on 5 October (a day earlier internationally), along with seven other studio releases, such as 1971's Imagine." "Double Fantasy" will also be available in a newly remixed "stripped down" version that enhances Lennon's vocals on such songs as "Starting Over" and "Woman."



Ono said she was putting a lot of care into the projects, because of her increasing age.



"I'm 77, so I think this could be my last effort, so I'm really trying very hard," she said.



Ono will once again oppose parole for Lennon's killer Mark David Chapman when his case comes up for review later this month. She said Chapman, now 55, posed a risk not only to her and to Lennon's two sons, but to the public and even to himself.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookPart of The Independent’s new eBook series The Great Composers
Arts and Entertainment
Under the skin: Sarah Kane in May 1998
theatreThe story behind a new season of Sarah Kane plays
Arts and Entertainment
Preening: Johnny Depp in 'Mortdecai'
filmMortdecai becomes actor's fifth consecutive box office bomb
Sport
Bradford City's reward for their memorable win over Chelsea is a trip to face either Sunderland or Fulham (Getty)
football
News
Lars Andersen took up archery in his mid thirties
video
Voices
Focus E15 Mothers led a protest to highlight the lack of affordable housing in London
voicesLondon’s housing crisis amounts to an abuse of human rights, says Grace Dent
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Gadgets & Tech

    Investigo: Finance Business Partner

    £45000 - £50000 per annum: Investigo: My client, a global leader in providing ...

    Ashdown Group: Application Support Engineer with SQL skills

    £28000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A highly reputable business is looking to rec...

    Ashdown Group: Trainee / Graduate Helpdesk Analyst

    £20000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A highly reputable business is looking to rec...

    Ashdown Group: (PHP / Python) - Global Media firm - London

    £50000 per annum + 26 days holiday,pension: Ashdown Group: A highly successful...

    Day In a Page

    Woman who was sent to three Nazi death camps describes how she escaped the gas chamber

    Auschwitz liberation 70th anniversary

    Woman sent to three Nazi death camps describes surviving gas chamber
    DSK, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel

    The inside track on France's trial of the year

    Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel:
    As provocative now as they ever were

    Sarah Kane season

    Why her plays are as provocative now as when they were written
    Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of a killing in Iraq 11 years ago

    Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of another killing

    Japanese mood was against what was seen as irresponsible trips to a vicious war zone
    Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

    Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

    One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
    The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

    The enemy within

    People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
    'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

    'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

    Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
    Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

    Autumn/winter menswear 2015

    The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore
    'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

    'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

    Army general planning to come out
    Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

    What the six wise men told Tony Blair

    Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
    25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

    25 years of The Independent on Sunday

    The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
    Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

    Homeless Veterans appeal

    As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
    Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

    Smash hit go under the hammer

    It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
    Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

    The geeks who rocked the world

    A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
    Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

    Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

    Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea