From: email@example.com (Kozinn)
Subject: Re: The Beatles CDs: Why'd They Take So Long?
Date: 12 Jul 1996 00:17:39 -0400
The question of why the Beatles CDs took so long is long and complicated,
but the first thing to keep in mind is that EMI itself was way behind on
CD. As of 1984, when most of the major labels were starting to put out
their catalogues, Bashkar Menon, the head of EMI went on record saying:
"CD is a crock. This company will never get involved with that format."
By the time they got going, several things were going on. One was
negotiations with McCartney, which involved Beatles stuff as well as solo
stuff (it's too complicated to get into at the moment); second, they were
still in contention with the Beatles themselves. I don't remember which
side was holding out -- either the Beatles were saying that if EMI
transferred to CD without their permission they'd sue for that as well; or
EMI said they wouldn't issue the catalogue on CD unless the Beatles
settled. Perhaps both!
And finally, once they agreed to go ahead, there
was a problem getting major plant capacity, which was needed for pressings
as big as EMI needed to do. There were at the time only half a dozen or so
plants making CDs.