updated 06:59 pm EDT, Wed July 16, 2014
New app versions include videos, interviews, photos and lower cost
In an unusual move, Concord Music Group and former Beatle Paul McCartney have re-worked five of the singer-songwriter's classic albums -- McCartney, Ram, Band on the Run, Wings over America and 1980's McCartney II -- as multi-media iPad apps. The re-worked iPad versions feature not only remastered audio of the albums in question, but also videos, interviews, artwork associated with the release (such as single covers) and photos from the period.
The releases, which are actually priced lower than the albums alone at $8 each, are presumably aimed at fans who are familiar with the music but prefer to listen to each album as a complete statement, an endeavor made easier with the visual stimulation of the bonus material. Other artists have occasionally released albums as iPad apps, but the format has not generally caught on -- except for selected examples where the artist either intended the record as a complete work, or takes advantage of the iPad app format to present multimedia bonus materials. The format has largely been usurped by iTunes' own "iTunes LP" format.
The iPad version of McCartney (from the album originally released in 1970) includes -- beyond the remastered 13 original album tracks -- eight video clips, an extensive interview discussing the album, rare photos of McCartney and his wife Linda, full album artwork and a history on the making of the album. The music is downloaded within the app if not already present in the users' iTunes library, as is the video content in order to keep the file size of the app down.
With the exception of McCartney II, the albums mostly spring from a very productive and successful period for McCartney immediately following the breakup of the Beatles, the early 70s. Wings Over America was a live release documenting the previous year's tour of the US with his own follow-up group, Wings.