Thursday, July 21, 2011

The Beatles: Introducing the Beatles

Review # 34
Artist: The Beatles
Title: Introducing the Beatles
Format: LP
Label: Vee-Jay
Year: 1964
Songs: 12

I don't have too much to say about this one because, in some sense, I've already reviewed it. Like The Early Beatles, this is a U.S. release of the songs that appeared on the Beatles' first UK LP, Please Please Me. Released on Vee-Jay records in 1964, this record was the first release of Beatles material in the United States, preceding Meet the Beatles (the U.S. equivalent of the band's sophomore effort With the Beatles) by a few weeks. Capitol Records had initially been uninterested in releasing these songs, as the Beatles were still an unknown commodity in the U.S. a that time. Introducing the Beatles was available for a fairly short time because it soon became apparent to the folks at Capitol that they wanted these songs on their label after all. Thus, this is a highly sought after collector's item, especially if you can find a stereo version.

My copy is almost certainly a counterfeit.  This record was already a scarce and desirable commodity by the late 1960s, and bootleg versions of it were produced throughout the 60s and 70s. I did a little research on how you can tell the fakes and found 1) if it says it's stereo (mine does), it's probably a fake because so few stereo copies were made, 2) if you can't see George's shadow, it's probably a fake (you can't see it on mine, but the sleeve is so worn that it's hard to tell), and 3) if the title and the band name are on opposite sides of the spindle hole, it's probably fake (as is the case with mine). But, that's what you get for a  $1.29 at a thrift store. It's still cool to have a copy.

Interestingly, the Vee-Jay record featuring the songs from Please Please Me is actually more similar to the British release than is the Capitol version.  The songs on Introducing the Beatles are actually in the same order as on Please Please Me, however, like the Capitol release, tracks have been removed (in this case "Love Me Do" and "P.S. I Love You"). Another oddity on this record is that the songwriting credits on the original songs all go to "McCartney-Lennon" rather than "Lennon-McCartney" as they would appear on every other Beatles' album.

Total songs listened: 444

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