Love Me Do, P.S. I Love You and Copyright Law

Will you be buying any of the “new” Beatles CDs which are taking advantage of “Love Me Do” and “P.S. I Love You” being out of copyright? Both songs are now fair game in Europe for any compact disc compiler out there to use when putting together a Beatle early days disc, and a number of small labels are taking advantage.

[European copyright laws grant ownership of a recorded track for fifty years – and “Love Me Do” has just gone past that. There are moves to extend the period to 70 years, but this is not expected to happen until at least November this year. In the US the period of copyright is 95 years.]

So, there are a number of Beatles recordings due for release shortly. Wogblog has already mentioned this one:


The Beatles Archive I Saw Her Standing There will come out on February 25. And there are more on the way. Rolling Stone is reporting that a company called Digital Remasterings will be including “Love Me Do” on a compilation of early Beatles recordings, and that the French classical reissue label Pristine Classical has also released the song as a remastered single. This was apparently done in protest against the trouble the planned 70 year copyright extension will cause it when reissuing old symphonic recordings. However, I’ve scoured their website and cannot find any reference to the Beatles at all…..

And here’s another CD I found on Amazon yesterday  –  The Beatles – The Early Years. It’s also listed as having a February release:

Early Years

These albums are pretty much entirely made up of songs recorded by the band before they signed to Parlophone Records. They are all previously released material which can now legally be supplemented by two official songs.

So, here’s a quick straw poll. Let us know what you think: