Call it Beatlemania 2.0.
Based on strong first-day sales of their newly-remastered catalog, the Fab Four appear set to dominate sales charts on a worldwide basis. As reported by Billboard.biz, projections in Britain indicate the band will occupy five of the Top 20 slots when sales charts appear on Sunday. Additionally, as many as 15 of the remastered CDs will place among the Top 75.
“"This massive project has come together so well through a great partnership between Apple Corps and EMI, and several years of hard work by both," said Elio Leoni-Sceti, CEO of EMI Music, in a statement. "The response from consumers from all around the world has been fantastic and simply underlines the pure quality and timelessness of the Beatles' music and a very well thought out global marketing campaign. But this is only the beginning. We're looking forward to building on what has been a really great start."
Thus far the biggest-selling titles in the U.K. have been Abbey Road and Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. In Germany, the band’s 14-CD stereo box set has been the big seller, with many German retailers reporting stock outages on the first day of sales. The stereo box set is also currently Number One on the Amazon France sales chart, with Abbey Road placing at Number Six and the mono box set at Number Seven.
The remastered discs have also ignited a Beatles frenzy in Japan, with entertainment retailer HMV Japan reporting pre-orders topping 10,000 for both the stereo version and the mono version of the box set.
Indeed, speculation has begun that the Beatles might become the biggest-selling act of the decade.
Coinciding with the excitement generated by the remastered catalog, a massive marketing push is underway for “The Beatles: Rock Band”
video game. According to Billboard.com
, the game is being backed by a $20 million-plus ad campaign, structured to market not only the game but also the remastered discs.
Additionally, sources say the ABC TV network will air a two-hour Thanksgiving night prime-time special that will feature Beatles footage along with contemporary artists performing the band’s songs.
“The Beatles must be the only band that can generate such passion in a reissue,” said Geoffrey Bonouvrié, chairman of the Australian Music Retailer's Association, summing up the frenzy to Billboard. “The sound [of the remastered CDs] is amazing when you compare it to the original recordings. EMI have certainly set the bench mark with this."