Bronze Statues - The Beatles

The Beatles Never Broke Up (Or Did They?)

A half century has passed since the Beatles quit making music together and to this day, their music continues to generate millions in cash for each member or their estates. Their 'break up' in 1970 sent shock waves around the world as their legions of devastated fans tried to make sense of why their favorite band would even consider doing such a thing.

The Beatles may have stopped recording music together but as co-owners of Apple Corps, the company they formed in 1968, they remain business partners to this day, till death do them part. Even after the release of their last studio album, 'Let it Be', they continued to record as solo artists for the Apple label until 1975, each taking their turn going to number 1, making Apple Records one of the most successful independent record companies of the late 60's through the 1970's.

Apple's pressings didn't stop there. in 197, Apple released 2 greatest hits packages, '1962-66' and '1967-70' which quickly became multi-million sellers. 'Live At The BBC', a 2 LP set was released in 1994 and would sell 8 million copies just in its first year. A follow up E.P. single, 'Baby, It's You', containing 4 songs, 3 of which were not included in the LP, was released the following year. Also in 1995,  the 'Beatles' Anthology 1' was released. In its first week, Anthology 1 sold more than 850,000 copies in the USA alone. Anthology 2 and 3 would soon follow with equally impressive sales. These releases made the Beatles one of the most successful recording groups of the 1990's.

Just when you thought it was finally over, Apple released 'Beatles 1' in November, 2000 and it debuted at number 1, how fitting. By 2015, this compilation of number one hits sold at least 12.5 million copies in the USA alone. According to Wikipedia, the album as surpassed 31 million units sold and counting and is now regarded as one of the most successful releases of all time. Apple has since released 'Live At The BBC 2' and 'Love', the great soundtrack to the Cirque Du Soleil live Vegas show.

No one knows exactly how many copies of their records have sold in the last 60 years but considering, they sold LPs, EP's (extended play singles), singles, reel tapes, 8-track tapes, cassette tapes, CDs and now digital downloads, it's a safe bet their total has now definitely surpassed one billion copies. They even sold 75 rpm singles in India and the Philippines. 

Apple continues to bring in big bucks for the Beatles, with Apple raking just over 50 million British pounds in 2020. It not only brings in money from their music but also from their likenesses, such as t-shirts with album cover iron-ons, coffee cups, Yellow Submarine toys and so on, including the use of their music and likenesses for the PlayStation RockBand game.

For a band that supposedly broke up in 1970, their music sure has worked hard to continue generating money for John, Paul, George and Ringo. For all the cash that Apple brings in, it still doesn't include the bucks they continue to generate as solo artists. Both McCartney and Starr have toured extensively in the last 30 years with McCartney's world tours being among the most successful ever.

John Lennon's estate is believed to be worth over $800 Million (US) and continues to generate about $12 million yearly, according to Forbes. George Harrison was said to be worth somewhere between 300 and 400 million US dollars at the time of his death and his estate continues to generate about $7 million per year.

Apple Records has also released rehashed versions of Beatles LPs as digitally remastered versions. A more recent 'new' release was the re-release of 'Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band'. Originally, there were two different mixes released. One was monoraul and the other was in stereo with the mono version being the original release. 'Stereo' was only just starting to take off at that time so they spend a lot more time mixing the mono version but very little time on the stereo version, hence a 'rough cut', although the stereo version is the version we grew up with and was indeed a great success. In 2017, the album was finally re-released with a brand new, proper stereo remix and even included a 5.1 surround sound version. How cool is that? The remix was done by Giles Martin, son of the late, great George Martin.

Apple also re-released 'Let it Be' in 2003, without Phil Spector's fancy overdubs. The band never intended to add overdubs as they originally wanted a 'live' sound. As things turned out, Spector was brought in to mix the tapes and unbeknownst to the band members, added the overdubs and the album was released in April 1970. While the LP generated 3 number one hits in the USA, the band was never quite happy with the end result and it was McCartney who pushed to have the album re-released without the overdubs. A digitally remastered version of Let it Be Naked was released in 2013.

It's safe to say that since their first single, 'Love Me Do' in October 1962, the Beatles have generated billions of dollars in revenue between the four of them. Some die-hard fans will say they broke up in 1975, when their contract with EMI was finally fulfilled. It is quite clear to me that, as business partners, they never broke up and have proven to be quite successful, even 50+ years after they stopped recording together as a unit. It amazes me that Apple Corps continues to rake in 50 million pounds a year and shows no signs of slowing down.

So this is my take regarding the breakup of the Beatles. Please share your thoughts below. What's your fave Beatles album or song. Did you ever see them play or know someone who did? Please share your experiences. Thanks a million...


{Here's a fun fact: the Japanese word for apple is......... ringo! }

(Picture of Beatles bronze statues - free to use - no copyright)



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Name's Joe and I live in Ontario, Canada. I like writing on a wide variety of topics. I enjoy keeping track of markets, investing and commodities and the crypto sector. Also do some coding for web browsers.

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