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  • The Beatles Love Me Do Is Out Of Copyright

    The Beatles first single, Love Me Do / P.S. I Love You, has entered the public domain in Europe and small labels are already taking advantage of the situation.

    The Beatles

    The European copyright laws grant ownership of a recorded track for fifty years, which Love Me Do just passed. That means that, starting January 1 of 2013, anyone who wants to put out the track is free to do so.

    That law may be changed before the end of this year, moving the threshold to 70 years, which will help records released in 1963, but it is not expected that the new protection will be retroactive. The current U.S. copyright law grants 95 years of protection.

    The first to take advantage of the new status is a small company called Digital Remasterings who have included Love Me Do on a release of early Beatles recordings including the often released Hamburg Star Club live show.

    Another who has released the song is Pristine Classical who normally specializes in remastering and releasing public domain classical pieces but has broken that policy for the Beatles' song. According to many sources, they are doing it more in protest of the the pending updated limit which will reduce the number of recordings available for their library.


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  • Led Zeppelin negotiating exclusive streaming rights deal

    In reviewing the year end report for 2012, one of the standout figures is the number of times the biggest songs were streamed on the internet. Whether through Spotify, Mog, Rhapsody or another subscription service, or via video on YouTube, some songs reached numbers in the tens of millions.
     
    There remain a few holdouts from the streaming tsunami. You can get the solo work of the Beatles but not the group's catalogue. Neither are the albums of Pink Floyd, the Eagles or AC/DC. At times it even gets down to individual works such as Taylor Swift's latest smash Red, even though the rest of her albums are available.

    Then there's Led Zeppelin who are now negotiating with a number of companies for the exclusive rights to their streamed music. According to the New York Times, those in the running include Spotify, Rhapsody, Rdio and Deezer.

    A spokesman for Warner Music said in a statement "We're excited about the opportunity to collaborate with Led Zeppelin to activate streaming rights for their catalog. We're supportive of the band's discussions with W.M.G.'s streaming service partners to create a window of exclusivity to maximize the impact of this launch."

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  • Bob Dylan 50th Anniversary Collection Released In Europe

    Late last month, a new Bob Dylan album hit the market in Europe in limited quantities that would make a fan of the songwriter drool.

    The 50th Anniversary Collection is a four-CD, 86 track set centered around studio outtakes and live material recorded by Dylan in 1962.

    Only about 100 copies were released to select record stores and fans who found out about the recordings were able to download the collection for about $130. As far as the company is concerned, that's it for now.

    So what is the story behind this release and why in such a limited quantity? It all has to do with European copyright laws and protecting material outside of a fifty year window. A source for Sony Music told Rolling Stone:

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