John Lennon's solo catalog will be made available digitally for the first time beginning this week with the release of the retrospective "Working Class Hero." The balance of Lennon's solo work will arrive digitally via as-yet-unannounced services on Dec. 5 in the United Kingdom and a day later in North America. A handful of unspecified tracks will also be available for download on mobile devices.
"I am very happy that John's music is now available to a new generation of music fans," says Lennon's widow, Yoko Ono. "New technology is something he always embraced and this is something he would have loved. I always say that he would have been very excited by all the opportunities offered by the development of new means of communication."
However, the artist's music will not be sold via Apple's iTunes Music Store, which is embroiled in a lawsuit with Apple Corps Ltd., the Beatles' former record label. The latter company sued the computer giant earlier this year, claiming the iTunes store breaches a 1991 agreement involving the use of the Apple trademark for any works "whose principal content is music and, or performances."