200px-apple_6a_label.jpgThat’s Apple Records. Not Apple Computers. Or indeed Apple Martin-Paltrow. Both a blatant rip-off of Apple records logo etc.

So Apple Records. That is beatle band record label. Why is it so important, its only a record label. Well Apple was one of the very first stabs at a creative entity (the Beatles) owning the means of production and distribution. Being able to set up a stall and rake the money in directly. To ignore THE SUITS and do what the hell they wanted. Of course it was just a shame that what the hell they wanted was Mary Hopkin records and The White Album, but then such is the way with truly innovative ideas. And as a brand Apple was very easy to understand, there was that nice picture of the Granny Smith on the label.

apple3.jpgThe downside of Apple was that everyone wanted a go. And so twenty years later, you didn’t sign a band, you signed their record label who exclusively produced THEIR records. So Thousand Yard Stare were on Stifled Aardvark records. Not exactly a great legacy for Beatles band. But then many of the Beatles legacy’s are looking pretty tarnished now. The concept albums?
So to Apple then, the record label. A branding success because it was clear what it was all about, without being derivative of the core (ha!) Beatles identity. But really really good due to the record labels being different on the a and b-sides. The a-Side with the shiny Granny Smith (above), and the B-side with the flesh and the pips (below). Which gives us one of branding true secrets – a good brand has more than one face.