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UPDATE: According to this arcticle “Legal Beatles MP3 archive goes dark” at boingboing.net Norwegian Broadcasting misunderstood their licensing agreement and they’ve had to pull 212 podcasts and their associated tracks! I only downloaded the first 14, how many did you get?

From NRKbeta, the appended announcement about publishing podcasts in Norwegian each of which contains a full track from The Beatles music library — but preceded by some commentary in Norwegian. So here’s how to get your free music and exclude the commentary before the deal expires …

1. Download: NRKbeta provide an RSS link to .mp3 files here. If you don’t have QuickTime Pro to easily save the download to desktop then Option click each music link from the RSS page, on a Mac, to download the files to your desktop — bypassing the player. Please don’t try subscribing to the podcasts, you won’t be able to trim out the Norwegian introductions as easily as described in step three below.

2. Rename: Appropriately rename the downloaded .mp3 file (e.g. “nrk_beatles_komplett_2009-0105-0120_28464.mp3” should be reamed “Twist and Shout.mp3”).

3. Trim and Play: You can trim out the Norwegian introduction in some audio editing tool or simply import it into iTunes and set the track to start playing well into the track. Set Get Info>Options>Start Time to where the music begins (e.g. 3:18 for Twist and Shout, that three-colon-eighteen, not three-stop-eighteen). Under the Options tab fix the track’s Name and Genre and anything else you care to add.

Enjoy your free Beatles music. The music is sampled at 128kbps and sounds pretty decent to me. I expect the digital for-sale tracks, whenever they appear on Amazon or iTunes will probably be of higher quality, but you can’t argue with free and, as far as I know, you can’t legally download digital files of Beatles music anywhere else.

“Some weeks ago, NRK — Norwegian Broadcasting — signed a deal with music rights holder organisation TONO in Norway. The new deal gives NRK right to publish podcasts of all previously broadcasted radio- and tv-programs that contains less then 70% music.

“Podcast containing music may be up for four weeks, while our podcast without music stay up on our server forever.

“One result of this deal, is that we now can publish “Vår daglige Beatles” – “Our Daily Beatles” in English – as a podcast.

“In this series from 2001, journalists Finn Tokvam og Bård Ose tells the story of every single Beatles tracks ever made, chronologically. Each episode contains a 3 minute story about each track (sadly for our international visitors – in Norwegian) and the actual Beatles tune.

“This is — as far as we know — the first time you can download the Beatles’ music legally. Neither iTunes nor Amazon have The Beatles in their music stores.

“The first episodes are already in the podcast, available from this RSS-feed:

http://podkast.nrk.no/program/beatles_komplett.rss

“At the time of writing, 14 episodes are in the feed. All 212 will be there by the end of January!

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