The entire catalog of the Texas bar band, The Earthworms — one album and a half-baked demo — is now being offered on iTunes.
Just as they did with The Beatles, Apple is pulling out all the stops, right down to the mysterious teaser that appeared the day before. (See image below.)
“The Earthworms’ catalog isn’t quite what The Beatles’ is, but I hear they’ve got a lot of catchy tunes,” says Eddie Cue, Apple’s iTunes chief. “We’re bracing for a rush.”
Negotiations between Apple and The Earthworms dragged on for years, with frequently rumored deals never quite materializing. A source reveals that what finally broke the stalemate was The Earthworms’ willingness to receive no compensation at all.
“It’s really hard to write songs,” says Earthworms guitarist, The Snake.” A revenue stream would only add more pressure.”
Already The Earthworms’ presence on iTunes has doubled sales of their hit single, We’re All Worms, from two to four — thanks to purchases by the drummer’s mom and sister.
As part of the launch hype, Apple is offering free access to an online video of The Earthworms’ first concert in America, Every Earthworm Has Its Day. The $3.50 admission to this event kept the audience small, and even then many were willing to abandon their investment before the first set had ended. But the concert is fondly remembered as an Earthworms classic.
Eddie Cue sees the new band helping to improve Apple’s image too. “We get a bad rap for being elitist,” he says, “but signing a fifth-tier band like The Earthworms proves we’re regular guys who just happen to have a crushing stranglehold on the global music business.”