The compilation album Hey Jude was issued on this day in the United States, as Apple SW 385. It brought together non-album singles and b-sides, along with Can’t Buy Me Love and I Should Have Known Better, which had previously been released on the United Artists soundtrack LP for A Hard Day’s Night.
The idea for the compilation came from Allen Klein and Apple Corps. It came in the wake of Klein’s renegotiated royalty rate with Capitol Records.
Hey Jude was intended to act as a sales buffer during the delayed release of Let It Be. Klein persuaded The Beatles that it would bring in significant extra income without any additional effort from them.
The songs were selected by Allan Stickler of Apple and Klein’s company ABKCO, and were intended to span The Beatles’ career, although the tracklisting focused on more recent recordings.
The album was originally to have been titled The Beatles Again, but shortly prior to its release it was changed to Hey Jude. Due to the late change, however, some labels on early pressings featured the original title. The only instance of the title anywhere on the cover was the album’s spine.
In addition to the United States, the Hey Jude compilation was released in countries including Canada, Australia, Spain, Germany, France, Greece and Japan. Imported copies found their way into the United Kingdom, although it wasn’t officially released there until May 1979.
The tracklisting was as follows: