According to Randy Thornton (producer of numerous Disney film score and theme park releases), John Barry's terrific and long-unavailable soundtrack LP (and never before legitimately issued on CD) for Disney’s 1979 science fiction adventure, The Black Hole, will be included in the next batch of iTunes-only releases from Walt Disney Records coming on January 16th.
Thornton also provides some insight into the original digital recording and subsequent transfer for iTunes:
"Now before someone cries foul, I will explain the status of “The Black Hole Soundtrack”. Though this was the first digitally recorded soundtrack, the digital technology of 1979 is not compatible with digital technology of today (or even 1982 when CDs were introduced). This soundtrack was recorded with 4bit resolution at 32kHz sampling, thus making a pure digital release not only impossible, but any attempt to upsample or convert them would result in a recording far worse than the analog conversion that was done at the time. The reason it has taken me so long to get this soundtrack re-released is that I wanted to make absolutely sure that there was no way I could use the original digital recordings. I also couldn’t include more of John Barry’s score than was originally released – as the album, as it stands, is all that was legally cleared for release. I did, however, hunt down the original analog transfer from 1979, digitally transferred and restored at 24/96 and re-created the album’s original content. I know some of you more ‘passionate’ will still be disappointed, but there is nothing more anyone could do. Still, even at the iTunes 128kbs compression, the album has never sounded better!"