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The Beatles: The Anthology/Live at the BBC

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Saxman
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« on: July 16, 2010, 08:24:39 am »

What are opinions among the Beatlemaniacs on this board about the "Anthology" and "Live at the BBC" releases?  Do you feel the 2 CD sets are worth acquiring?  For whatever reason, I've never gotten around to acquiring them.  Thanks.
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Charlie
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« Reply #1 on: July 16, 2010, 09:26:17 am »

I have all three anthologies and the BBC discs.  Grin

The BBC set is outstanding, not only for it's historical value, but for the songs and entertainment value too.   As an example "I'll Be On My Way," a John & Paul collaboration, was never recorded in the studio by the Beatles although they gave it to Billy J. Kramer and The Dakotas.  The lyrics ares silly (they have the nerve to rhyme "moon" and "June") which maybe the reason they gave it away.  But it's fun and a fine performance.  I'll have to check the date but I think this live track was done even before they came to America.   Most of these songs were recorded especially for radio but not played live on the air.  To explain why this was done please see the quote below taken from liner notes written by jazz impressario Michael Cuscuna for CD I have of the Nat Cole Trio who used the same process.

"In the 1930's, when radio featured live music, the playing of commercially available 78 rpm recordings was frowned upon on the premise that the listener was less likely to go out and buy a record that he or she could hear over the airwaves for free. Many records issued in the 30s and 40s even stated on the label: "not licensed for broadcast".

Still, local stations needed more than network shows and local affairs programming to fill their broadcast day. Out of this vacuum came a number of transcription services that took bands into studios and recorded material that would be edited segments for broadcast purposes only. These sessions were usually a little more informal than phonograph record dates and often boasted a higher level of material because artists were not trying to cut the latest song-pluggers tripe in search of a hit."


The liner notes are terrific with much detail.

Here is what much of the 2 CD set sounds like.



Regarding the 3 anthologies.  They are loaded with alternate versions, rehearsals, and some rare material.  Even if you are a huge Beatles fan you won't listen to this stuff a lot but they are must have for huge fans like me. Their historical value is outstanding.  What I did is burn a CD of all of the best stuff I wanted to hear on a regular basis.

Here is just a little of what you get spread throughout these sets.

1 -The 2 "reunion" songs, "Real Love" and "Free As A Bird."

2 -The solo acoustic demo of George's "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" which is just as wonderful as the full band version.

3 -Other alternate versions include a full band version of "Yesterday," a take of "You Won't See Me" that is superior to the version on Rubber Soul, and an acapella take of "Because" from Abbey Road.  There are dozens more.

4 -There are several completely finished songs that they decided to relegate to the vaults that were never released until the anthologies came out.   Among them are a Harrison rocker, "Not Guilty" intended for The White Album, Paul's finished "Come and Get It" which was given to Badfinger and became a hit, a Lennon rocker form the Beatlemania days, "Leave My Kitten Alone," and several more.       

5 -An acetate 78 RPM of 2 songs that The Quarrymen recorded back in Liverpool in 1957.

6 - Much of a live concert from Sweden in the Beatlemania Days.

7 - Their entire Decca Records session recorded on January 1, 1962 which were the demos that company eventually turned down but were the same ones George Martin heard to sign them for Parlophone/EMI.

As with the BBC set the liner notes are terrific with much detail.

I'll let you look on Amazon and All Music Guide to see what tunes are on what discs but they are essential for Beatles completists.



« Last Edit: July 16, 2010, 10:20:33 am by Charlie » Report Spam   Logged
Perplexio
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« Reply #2 on: July 16, 2010, 09:47:55 am »

I have all three anthologies and the BBC discs.  Grin

The BBC set is outstanding, not only for it's historical value, but for the songs and entertainment value too.   As an example "I'll Be On My Way," a John & Paul collaboration, was never recorded in the studio by the Beatles although they gave it to Billy J. Kramer and The Dakotas.  The lyrics ares silly (they have the nerve to rhyme "moon" and "June") which maybe the reason they gave it away.  But it's fun and a fine performance.  I'll have to check the date but I think this live track was done even before They came to America.   Most of these songs were recorded especially for radio but not played live on the air.  To explain why this was done please see the quote below taken from liner notes written by jazz impressario Michael Cuscuna for CD I have of the Nat Cole Trio who used the same process.

"In the 1930's, when radio featured live music, the playing of commercially available 78 rpm recordings was frowned upon on the premise that the listener was less likely to go out and buy a record that he or she could hear over the airwaves for free. Many records issued in the 30s and 40s even stated on the label: "not licensed for broadcast".

Still, local stations needed more than network shows and local affairs programming to fill their broadcast day. Out of this vacuum came a number of transcription services that took bands into studios and recorded material that would be edited into 15-minute segments for broadcast purposes only. These sessions were usually a little more informal than phonograph record dates and often boasted a higher level of material because artists were not trying to cut the latest song-pluggers tripe in search of a hit."


The liner notes are terrific with much detail.

Here is what much of the 2 CD set sounds like.



Regarding the 3 anthologies.  They are loaded with alternate versions, rehearsals, and some rare material.  Even if you are a huge Beatles fan you won't listen to this stuff a lot but they are must have for huge fans like me. Their historical value is outstanding.  What I did is burn a CD of all of the best stuff I wanted to hear on a regular basis.

Here is just a little of what you get spread throughout these sets.

1 -The 2 "reunion" songs, "Real Love" and "Free As A Bird."

2 -The solo acoustic demo of George's "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" which is just as wonderful as the full band version.

3 -Other alternate versions include a full band version of "Yesterday," a take of "You Won't See Me" that is superior to the version on Rubber Soul, and an acapella take of "Because" from Abbey Road.  There are dozens more.

4 -There are several completely finished songs that they decided to relegate to the vaults that were never released until the anthologies came out.   Among them are a Harrison rocker, "Not Guilty" intended for The White Album, Paul's finished "Come and Get It" which was given to Badfinger and became a hit, a Lennon rocker form the Beatlemania days, "Leave My Kitten Alone," and several more.       

5 -An acetate 78 RPM of 2 songs that The Quarrymen recorded back in Liverpool in 1957.

6 - Much of a live concert from Sweden in the Beatlemania Days.

7 - Their entire Decca Records session recorded on January 1, 1962 which were the demos that company eventually turned down but were the same ones George Martin heard to sign them for Parlophone/EMI.

As with the BBC set the liner notes are terrific with much detail.

I'll let you look on Amazon and All Music Guide to see what tunes are on what discs but they are essential for Beatles completists.





Isn't there even some material with Stuart Sutcliffe on bass and vocals on one of the Anthology discs?
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Charlie
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« Reply #3 on: July 16, 2010, 09:54:05 am »

Here is the AMG review of the BBC set and "Soldier of Love" from it.

From 1962 to 1965, the Beatles made 52 appearances on the BBC, recording live-in-the-studio performances of both their official releases and several dozen songs that they never issued on disc. This magnificent two-disc compilation features 56 of these tracks, including 29 covers of early rock, R&B, soul, and pop tunes that never appeared on their official releases, as well as the Lennon-McCartney original "I'll Be on My Way," which they gave in 1963 to Billy J. Kramer rather than record it themselves. These performances are nothing less than electrifying, especially the previously unavailable covers, which feature quite a few versions of classics by Chuck Berry, Little Richard, Carl Perkins, and Elvis Presley. There are also off-the-beaten-path tunes by the Everly Brothers and Buddy Holly on down to obscurities by the Jodimars, Chan Romero (a marvelous "Hippy Hippy Shake"), Eddie Fontaine, and Ann-Margret. The greatest gem is probably their fabulous version of Arthur Alexander's "Soldier of Love," which (like several of the tracks) would have easily qualified as a highlight of their early releases if they had issued it officially. Restored from existing tapes of various quality, the sound is mostly very good and never less than listenable. Unfortunately, they weren't able to include every single rarity that the Beatles recorded for the BBC; the absence of Carl Perkins' "Lend Me Your Comb," which has circulated on bootlegs in a high-fidelity version, is especially mystifying. Minor quibbles aside, these performances, available on bootlegs for years, compose the major missing chapter in the Beatles' legacy, and it's great to have them easily obtainable in a first-rate package.

« Last Edit: July 16, 2010, 09:57:31 am by Charlie » Report Spam   Logged
Saxman
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« Reply #4 on: July 16, 2010, 09:55:25 am »

Thanks for all the info!
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Charlie
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« Reply #5 on: July 16, 2010, 09:56:46 am »

Quote
Isn't there even some material with Stuart Sutcliffe on bass and vocals on one of the Anthology discs?

I don't know.  I'll have to check.  If there is it's minimal.  There are several Pete Best tracks though including the Decca demos and and an A and B side they made in Germany, "My Bonnie," and a Harrison-Lennon instrumental, "Cry For A Shadow."   
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Charlie
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« Reply #6 on: July 16, 2010, 10:14:05 am »

Darrin: yes, there is one Sutcliffe track, an instrumental named "Cayenne" written by Paul.  It's the only known tape of Stu with the band.  It was recorded in Liverpool in 1960. The personnel is John, Paul, George, and Stu on bass.  There is no drummer.   

 
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Charlie
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« Reply #7 on: July 16, 2010, 10:32:26 am »

Saxman's got me searching YouTube.  This has nothing to do with the anthologies but if you've never seen them in The Cavern you may like this.  It's Ringo on drums so it has to be sometime in August or later.

 
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Saxman
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« Reply #8 on: July 21, 2010, 11:16:02 pm »

To a certain extent, I have a mixed opinion of vault raiding (the Anthology probably doesn't count, since the Beatles approved it).  I'm thinking more of the case of  Jimi Hendrix: even the recent releases by his own estate are questionable.  This year's 'Valleys of Neptune" is comprised of 1969 studio jams on some of his catalog and unfinished items like the title cut.  Hendrix, a perfectionist, would never have released this stuff.  1997's "First Rays of the New Rising Sun" is his engineer Eddie Kramer's best guess at what the next Hendrix album would have sounded like.  It's all conjecture.  If Jimi didn't sign off on it, it's not cannon.  That means the ONLY official live album he approved is "Band of Gypsies," consisting of live performances he personally selected, edited and co-mixed.  All the other stuff is buck-making grabs.
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Perplexio
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« Reply #9 on: July 22, 2010, 07:19:06 am »

To me, it depends on which vaults are being raided and the extent to which the material was completed.  There's also that factor of whether it's the artist raiding their own vaults or if its the estate of a deceased artist/musician raiding those vaults to keep the gravy train coming, or even worse yet a record label milking their vaults for material that artist recorded on their label before his/her passing to cash in on a recently deceased musician/artist's death. 

However, If a band has live recordings of some of their early performances recorded before they started laying down tape for their debut album and they hit the vaults and get that stuff cleaned up for release... I'm cool with that. 
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Saxman
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« Reply #10 on: July 22, 2010, 08:53:21 am »

I agree 100%, but in the case of Hendrix, I think "the family" (largely Jani Hendrix, the stepsister of Jimi he met maybe 2 times in his entire life), it's all about milking the $ machine.  Another "official" compilation, "South Saturn Delta" (1997) is a round up of various studio recordings laying around Jimi never got around to finishing (or deleting).  It's largely forgettable, having an unfinished, non-vital feeling to it, lacking the sonic punch of the first 3 studio albums and the live "Band of Gypsies."

Speaking of BOG, "Live At The Fillmore East" is the stuff Jimi didn't select for "Band of Gypsies."  This ISN'T the stuff Jimi wanted released.
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Saxman
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« Reply #11 on: August 02, 2010, 10:03:05 am »

OK, I ordered the 3 anthologies and BBC used from Amazon, total price less than $50, quite a nice deal, IMHO.  I have received Anthology 1 and BBC so far and have nothing negative to say either release.  I understand some of the Anthology stuff isn't exactly audiophile, but for Beatlemaniacs like me, it's priceless: rare tracks, early versions and some tight concert performances.  BBC shows the band could DEFINITELY cut it live, if everyone everyone ever had any doubt!  Highly recommended!  I'll weigh in on Anthology 2 & 3 when they arrive and listen to them. 

Oh yeah, I find "Free As A Bird" oddly touching even if it does sound like The Electric Beatles Orchestra at times.  Too bad Ringo didn't get a shot at singing a verse, but that's a minor quibble.
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Charlie
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« Reply #12 on: August 02, 2010, 10:12:08 am »

 Grin Grin Grin Grin Grin Grin Grin Grin Grin Grin Grin Grin Grin Grin Grin
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Saxman
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« Reply #13 on: August 02, 2010, 11:47:39 am »

OK, I guess the obvious question is, is The Beatles "Love" release worthwhile?  We have the mash-up of "Tomorrow Never Knows"/"Within You Without You" on "Beatles Rock Band" and I find it quite interesting.  Thanks!
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« Reply #14 on: August 02, 2010, 01:04:38 pm »

OK, I guess the obvious question is, is The Beatles "Love" release worthwhile?  We have the mash-up of "Tomorrow Never Knows"/"Within You Without You" on "Beatles Rock Band" and I find it quite interesting.  Thanks!

I have it and it's interesting to see how some of the songs have the same beat and key so they blend well together. Its it's good for educational purposes, I played it once but that's all.  If you really want to enjoy The Beatles stick with their real albums. 
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