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Rekindling an iPhone Beatles Connection?

iphone beatlesThe world is sitting in wait for the impending iPhone release.  Gadget lust is running full throttle.  I’ve got it (gadget lust that is, not the iphone).  I won’t be waiting in line, and I won’t be switching my cell phone service – but I wouldn’t mind having the phone to play with.  That’s not going to happen, not unless someone with better connections is feeling generous, but it’s nice to dream.

Of similar dreams, I’ve speculated as far back as early May about a possible roll out of the Beatles music alongside the iPhone launch.  The most coveted online music catalog released alongside the most anticipated consumer product of the decade is just the kind of three-ring circus marketing Steve Jobs and his Apple cohorts love to put together.  (In a prior post that proved popular with readers,  Metue even opened discussion of possible Beatles song’s that might play if such an announcement were to happen.)

The reality is: there’s nothing concrete to suggest the Beatles and Apple are anywhere close to joining hands.  In fact some in the Beatles camp have hinted a deal isn’t likely until the fall or later.   In light of that, to consider, even discuss, otherwise is purely fan-fueled speculation, and wishful thinking.   Still, at this point, however slight, there is some basis for making the guess.  It’s not just that Apple has a penchant for splashy product launches.  And it’s not only because ex-Beatle Paul McCartney been making the rounds with his newest album.  It’s the where, when and how.   Specifically:

Paul McCartney has been featured in some recent Apple television commercials.   He’s also playing a few “last minute” shows at small venues in support his album “Memory Almost Full” which has spent two weeks in the top five of US Pop Charts.

Two weeks ago, in New York at the Highline Ballroom, McCartney played for 700 fans. The set list included new songs but it also included works from the Beatles catalog.  That raises the question: Were they a tune up for something bigger, something Apple, something shocking?  (Or is this just more of the amazing hype that’s built around the new phone?)

On Wednesday, Sir Paul will be playing at Amoeba records in Hollywood, CA – that will be the kind of tiny promotional performance that music legends who haven’t faded to obscurity are extremely unlikely to play.  It’s great for the fans, but it is unusual. Not to mention,  Hollywood  wouldn’t be a bad place for a big announcement (and it would be an easy launchpad and quick flight to head to San Francisco for Friday’s iPhone launch).

Then there’s the ultimate of tea-leaf-reading inspired tips:  When iphone was announced the music in the background was a Beatles song. Lovely Rita, to be specific.  Music is a key part of the iPhones feature set. It does make sense for a major musical announcement to go with it.

Will Hello Goodbye, Lovely Rita or another Apple Corps tune be playing at Apple Inc.’s Cupertino campus before the week is out?  It’s not likely, not at all.  Paul McCartney’s participation doesn’t mean the rest of the rights holders of the Fab 4 are lined up and ready yet.   Still,  if I had iPhone to bet, or if I would get one if my unlikely speculation turns out accurate –  I’d risk the gamble – even clearly against the odds.   It’s too tempting a prospect to not consider. 

It was, after all, the Beatles who’s lyrics ramble “Whenever I want you around, yeah; all I gotta do is call you on the phone” and similarly, “Hello, hello, I don’t know why you say goodbye, I Say hello”   … fitting words to go with the iPhone.

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