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Apple tunes up for music announcement: iPods to hit high notes?

Apple is holding a musical press conference next week. Crave will be there to see a possible new iPod launch -- or perhaps the digital debut of a certain scouse beat combo?

Apple is holding a musical extravaganza on Wednesday 1 September. A typically close-mouthed invitation has gone out to the press, including your humble Crave, to see Apple bandleader Steve Jobs strike a chord with a music-related announcement.

The press conference will begin at 10am US time at the Novellus Theater at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in Californ-aye-ay. That's 6pm Blighty-time, and your intrepid Cravers will be at the UK launch, first in line to bring you the first bite of the new products.

Our money's on a refresh of Apple's iPod line-up, perhaps with a front-facing camera and FaceTime video calling for the iPad touch. This time last year Jobs' mob unveiled the third-generation iPod touch and shuffle and added a video camera to the fifth-generation iPod nano.

We'd love it if Jobs threw in a more left-field announcement: a cloud-based iTunes, perhaps? The invitation does hint at a possible wild-card announcement: the guitar shown is a CF Martin Dreadnought -- according to the Register -- and Dreadnoughts were played by Paul McCartney and John Lennon of Merseybeat combo The Beatles. They acquired D-28 CF Martin Dreadnoughts in 1965 -- both geetars were right-handed so leftie Paul played his upside-down -- and used them on albums including Abbey Road and that white one we can never remember the name of.

Frankly, we're getting sick of clues that mop-topped MP3s are coming in through the bathroom window. The Beatles' back catalogue won't be selling for the benefit of Mr Jobs any time soon if Yoko Ono has anything to say about it; the long and winding road to digital Beatles will probably continue.

Check back on Wednesday afternoon for the full low-down on Apple's musical masterpiece. With Apple hitting a few bum notes lately, let us know in the comments what new products and features you'd like to see.