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McCartney is taking his act online

Times Staff Writer

All those “Silly Love Songs” are about to start echoing across the Internet. Most of Paul McCartney’s post-Beatles solo albums and those with his group Wings soon will be available digitally for the first time, EMI Music and Capitol Records announced Monday.

That makes him the final Beatle to put solo albums online. John Lennon, George Harrison and Ringo Starr have made recordings available for download after parting with EMI / Capitol. But McCartney becomes the first of the Fab Four to place albums into the digital domain from his most fertile period following the group’s 1970 breakup.

The announcement spans his first solo effort, “McCartney,” in 1970, through his Wings hits “Band on the Run” and “Wings at the Speed of Sound” and on to his 2005 Grammy-nominated “Chaos and Creation in the Backyard.” It also covers albums he recorded for Columbia Records from 1979 to 1984, because the rights to those works reverted to EMI / Capitol when he returned to that fold upon leaving Columbia. It won’t extend to his new album, “Memory Almost Full,” scheduled for release June 4 on the new Starbucks-Concord Music Group’s Hear Music label, which is not part of the EMI / Capitol family.

EMI officials would not elaborate on Monday’s news release, which included no specific date when McCartney’s albums would become available for download. They are expected this year, possibly before summer. EMI’s announcement also did not address when the other Beatles’ EMI / Capitol solo albums (including Lennon’s “Imagine,” Harrison’s “All Things Must Pass” and Starr’s “Ringo”) may be showing up online. There’s still no word on when the Beatles catalog might enter the digital realm or be reissued in remastered editions.

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randy.lewis@latimes.com


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