To commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Beatles’ arrival in America February 7, 1964, culminating with their historic appearance on the Ed Sullivan show on the 9th, Apple Corps Ltd./Capitol announced December 12, 2013, that they are re-releasing all of thirteen Beatles’ American albums in one box set On January 21, 2014 (January 20 in the UK.) “The U.S. Albums” begins with “Meet the Beatles!” (1964) and ends with “Hey Jude” (1970.)
How does this new set differ from previous releases of the American albums? Our discussion will do a comparison.
“The U.S. Albums” offers a complete package to American fans who grew up with the Beatles, offering these previously unreleased Capitol albums: “Yesterday And Today,” “Hey Jude,” the U.S. version of “Revolver,” audio documentary “The Beatles’ Story” and United Artists’ “A Hard Day’s Night” soundtrack album. The art work and sleeves are a “perfect replication” according to the press release.
Presented in mono and stereo (except for “The Beatles’ Story” and “Hey Jude” which are only in stereo), the albums will be available for sale individually for a limited time, with the exception of “The Beatles Story.” It is now available for pre-order at Amazon for $159.99.
Comparison to previous releases:
Some of the American albums were previously released in CD box sets. In 2004 and 2006 respectively, “The Beatles: The Capitol Albums” Vol. 1 and Vol 2, were released, in both stereo and mono, but included only eight albums. A Volume 3 was never released. Volume 1 and 2 addressed the frustration of American fans that the original 1980s CD release of the Beatles catalog was only in the British format. The British track listings, as well as artwork, album titles, and even song mixes, differed dramatically from the LPs that were released in the U.S. Apple Corps discovered how attached Americans were to the albums they grew up with, and these releases were an attempt to rectify that problem.
However, with no Volume 3, the American set has been incomplete.
Also, there were complaints over the packaging—no inner sleeves to protect the CDs, even difficulty in getting the small CD packets out of the box. Reproduction of the original art work did not match the original LPs.
“The U.S. Albums” will correct all these issues and provide a complete set that American fans are looking for. The only advance grumble we are hearing from some Beatle bloggers is that supposedly some of the tracks are taken from the 2009 digital remastering, not the original masters used on the American albums.
What you will get with “The U.S. Albums”
1. The 13 CDs include both mono and stereo song versions of all 13 American Beatles albums, (see below) with the exception of The Beatles’ Story and Hey Jude, which are in stereo only.
2. The boxed set replicates original LP artwork, including the albums’ inner sleeves
3. 64-page booklet with Beatles photos and promotional art from the time
4. A new essay by American author and television executive Bill Flanagan
The Beatles: The U.S. Albums
Presented in mono and stereo, except where noted as stereo only (** CD debut) (All released by Capitol Records except where otherwise noted.)
Meet The Beatles! [January 10, 1964; 11 weeks at No. 1]
The Beatles’ Second Album [April 10, 1964; five weeks at No. 1]
A Hard Day’s Night (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) **[United Artists: June 26, 1964; 14 weeks at No. 1]
Something New [July 20, 1964; nine weeks at No. 2]
The Beatles’ Story [stereo only] **[November 23, 1964; peaked at No. 7]
Beatles ’65 [December 15, 1964; nine weeks at No. 1]
The Early Beatles [March 22, 1965; peaked at No. 43]
Beatles VI [June 14, 1965; six weeks at No. 1]
Help! (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) [August 13, 1965; nine weeks at No. 1]
Rubber Soul [December 6, 1965; six weeks at No. 1]
Yesterday And Today ** [June 20, 1966; five weeks at No. 1]
Revolver **[August 8, 1966; six weeks at No. 1]
Hey Jude [stereo only] **[Apple Records: released February 26, 1970; four weeks at No. 2]
Please see links below for celebrations in the U.S. occurring the weekend of February 7-9 to commemorate the Beatles' 50th anniversary of their arrival in America.
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Copyright notice-©Shelley Germeaux 2013: This article and photos are subject to copyright restrictions and may not be reproduced without the author’s permission. Excerpts with link to original article are welcomed.
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