Tuesday, September 25, 2018

When We Say "Deluxe," We Mean DELUXE!!!

After over a year of not-so-patient anticipation, the official announcement came yesterday ...

The 50th Anniversary Deluxe Box Set Edition of "The Beatles" / "White Album" will finally be available on November 9th.

And when we say deluxe, we mean DELUXE!!!!!

Available in a variety of formats (including a 2-LP, 3-CD, 4-LP and 7-Disc edition that also comes with a 168-page hard cover book and a BluRay disc that includes the original album in mono), fans have their choice of how they want to celebrate all these new-found tracks in the expanded anniversary editions.


But honestly, I can't even imagine going anything less than full-throttle on this one!

As expected, you get nearly an entire two-cd set of demos of the tracks that ultimately made the final cut on the album.

But you also get two cd's worth of session tapes that take you thru the process of developing these tracks.

And, as an extra added surprise, we also get a glimpse at some of the music The Beatles were working on that just wasn't quite ready for final consideration ... 

Including a very early take of "Let It Be," which Paul would finish the following year for what was supposed to be the "Get Back" album ... but then wasn't "officially" released until 1970 when the album came out with the theatrically released film.

You also get Paul's "Junk," which would make his first solo LP, John Lennon's "Child Of Nature," which he would later rewrite as "Jealous Guy" for his "Imagine" album. Take One of "Hey Jude" and Take 102 (!!!) of "Not Guilty," a much-talked about track that George finally rerecorded from scratch in the '70's ... George's "Sour Milk Sea," which he would ultimately give to Apple Artist Jackie Lomax to record,"Step Inside Love," a McCartney track that would be given to Cilla Black (and ultimately became the theme song of her new television series), "Across The Universe," another Lennon tune that went thru several re-workings before the Phil Spector mix that made the "Let It Be" album, John's songs "Mean Mr. Mustard" and "Polythene Pam," at the time still two completely separate tracks before they would be worked into the incredible medley that graces Side Two of "Abbey Road" ... and much, more more. (You'll find a complete track list below)

After The Beatles returned from India in 1968, they regrouped at George's Esher House to show each other what they had been working on independently.  They knew it was time to put together their next album ... and that it had to be INCREDIBLE, being their first release for their own, brand new record label, Apple Records.  (It was also, for all intents and purposes, the follow up to their landmark LP, "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band."  "Magical Mystery Tour," released in between, was only an album here in America at the time.)

They all came with a full arsenal of material ... even more than they could fit on to a 30-track, 2-LP set.  By this point, each Beatles was taking charge of their own sessions, sometimes even recording independently of one another in separate studios.

After all the hoopla of "Pepper," The Beatles took a totally opposite approach to the cover art for their first Apple LP, designing a stark white cover with only their name (in small type) imprinted (or, on the early editions, embossed) on the cover ... along with a stamped, sequential number, giving the impression that the buyer was holding a unique, numbered pressing. (In all, the two record set has since gone 19 times platinum .. and most agree that the number was more of a novelty piece than a "tracking device" ... although for decades now we've heard about Ringo owning "The Beatles / White Album" #00001.)

Before the 50th anniversary deluxe box edition of "Sgt. Pepper" had even hit the streets last year, there was already talk of a White Album box set to come in 2018.  (Anticipation is also high for a similarly put together "Abbey Road" and "Let It Be" commemorative collection which will, reportedly FINALLY include the re-release .. in a new, specially edited format ... of the film of the same name.  (Am I being a bit too selfish in hoping that someday they'll also go back and create a special 6-CD combination commemorative salute to their landmark albums "Rubber Soul" and "Revolver," too, since those were missed at the 50 year mark?  Many ... including even George Harrison himself ... always looked at those two LPs as a bookend set ... what a GREAT compilation THIS would be!)

I'll add it to my "wish list"!!!  Meanwhile, there's plenty to devour right here ... and for some time to come.

Disc 1-2: New stereo remix of original album by Giles Martin and Sam Okell (originally released as Apple PCS 7067/8 (U.K.)/SWBO 101 (U.S.), 1968)
  1. Back In The U.S.S.R.
  2. Dear Prudence
  3. Glass Onion
  4. Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da
  5. Wild Honey Pie
  6. The Continuing Story Of Bungalow Bill
  7. While My Guitar Gently Weeps
  8. Happiness Is a Warm Gun
  9. Martha My Dear
  10. I’m So Tired
  11. Blackbird
  12. Piggies
  13. Rocky Raccoon
  14. Don’t Pass Me By
  15. Why Don’t We Do It In The Road?
  16. I Will
  17. Julia
  1. Birthday
  2. Yer Blues
  3. Mother Nature’s Son
  4. Everybody’s Got Something To Hide Except Me and My Monkey
  5. Sexy Sadie
  6. Helter Skelter
  7. Long, Long, Long
  8. Revolution 1
  9. Honey Pie
  10. Savoy Truffle
  11. Cry Baby Cry
  12. Revolution 9
  13. Good Night
Disc 3: Esher Demos
  1. Back In The U.S.S.R.
  2. Dear Prudence
  3. Glass Onion *
  4. Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da
  5. The Continuing Story Of Bungalow Bill
  6. While My Guitar Gently Weeps
  7. Happiness Is a Warm Gun *
  8. I’m So Tired
  9. Blackbird
  10. Piggies *
  11. Rocky Raccoon
  12. Julia
  13. Yer Blues
  14. Mother Nature’s Son
  15. Everybody’s Got Something To Hide Except Me and My Monkey
  16. Sexy Sadie
  17. Revolution
  18. Honey Pie *
  19. Cry Baby Cry
  20. Sour Milk Sea
  21. Junk *
  22. Child Of Nature
  23. Circles
  24. Mean Mr. Mustard *
  25. Polythene Pam *
  26. Not Guilty
  27. What’s The New Mary Jane
Discs 4-6: Sessions (exclusive to super deluxe box)
  1. Revolution I (Take 18)
  2. A Beginning (Take 4)/Don’t Pass Me By (Take 7)
  3. Blackbird (Take 28)
  4. Everybody’s Got Something To Hide Except Me and My Monkey (Unnumbered Rehearsal)
  5. Good Night (Unnumbered Rehearsal)
  6. Good Night (Take 10 with a guitar part from Take 5)
  7. Good Night (Take 22)
  8. Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da (Take 3)
  9. Revolution (Unnumbered rehearsal)
  10. Revolution (Take 14 – Instrumental backing track)
  11. Cry Baby Cry (Unnumbered rehearsal)
  12. Helter Skelter (First version – Take 2) *
  1. Sexy Sadie (Take 3)
  2. While My Guitar Gently Weeps (Acoustic version – Take 2)
  3. Hey Jude (Take 1)
  4. St. Louis Blues (Studio jam)
  5. Not Guilty (Take 102)
  6. Mother Nature’s Son (Take 15)
  7. Yer Blues (Take 5 with guide vocal)
  8. What’s The New Mary Jane (Take 1)
  9. Rocky Raccoon (Take 8)
  10. Back In The U.S.S.R. (Take 5 – Instrumental backing track)
  11. Dear Prudence (Vocal, guitar & drums)
  12. Let It Be (Unnumbered rehearsal)
  13. While My Guitar Gently Weeps (Third version – Take 27)
  14. (You’re So Square) Baby, I Don’t Care (Studio jam)
  15. Helter Skelter (Second version – Take 17)
  16. Glass Onion (Take 10)
  1. I Will (Take 13)
  2. Blue Moon (Studio jam)
  3. I Will (Take 29)
  4. Step Inside Love (Studio jam) *
  5. Los Paranoias (Studio jam) *
  6. Can You Take Me Back? (Take 1)
  7. Birthday (Take 2 – Instrumental backing track)
  8. Piggies (Take 12 – Instrumental backing track)
  9. Happiness Is a Warm Gun (Take 19)
  10. Honey Pie (Instrumental backing track)
  11. Savoy Truffle (Instrumental backing track)
  12. Martha My Dear (Without brass and strings)
  13. Long, Long, Long (Take 44)
  14. I’m So Tired (Take 7)
  15. I’m So Tired (Take 14)
  16. The Continuing Story Of Bungalow Bill (Take 2)
  17. Why Don’t We Do It In The Road? (Take 5)
  18. Julia (Two rehearsals)
  19. The Inner Light (Take 6 – Instrumental backing track)
  20. Lady Madonna (Take 2 – Piano and drums)
  21. Lady Madonna (Backing vocals from take 3)
  22. Across The Universe (Take 6)
Blu-Ray: Album mixes (exclusive to super deluxe box)

  1. PCM Stereo (2018 Stereo Mix)
  2. DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 (2018)
  3. Dolby True HD 5.1 (2018)
  4. Mono (2018 Direct Transfer of ‘The White Album’ Original Mono Mix)
* previously released, some in edited form, on Anthology 3 (Apple 7243 8 34451 2 7, 1996)