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B-Sides That Outweigh the A-Side
2 July 2012
4.58pm
jordyboothy
A Beginning
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As we know, The Beatles hardly ever copped out on gracefully filling the second side of their singles. In some cases, I find myself listening to the b-side more than the a-side; it's that good. So I was wondering if maybe some of you would like to mention particular b-sides that totally outshine the main show. 

 

To help you think about it, here's the list of British singles and their flip-sides. (you can mention foreign a+b-sides if you like, this is just what I'm familiar with)

 

Love Me Do - P.S. I Love You

Please Please Me - Ask Me Why

From Me To You - Thank You Girl

She Loves You - I'll Get You

I Want To Hold Your Hand - This Boy 

Can't Buy Me Love - You Can't Do That

A Hard Day's Night - Things We Said Today

I Feel Fine - She's A Woman

Ticket To Ride - Yes It Is 

Help! - I'm Down

We Can Work It Out - Day Tripper*

Paperback Writer - Rain

Yellow Submarine - Eleanor Rigby*

Penny Lane - Strawberry Fields Forever*

All You Need Is Love - Baby, You're a Rich Man

Hello, Goodbye - I Am The Walrus

Lady Madonna - The Inner Light

Hey Jude - Revolution

Get Back - Don't Let Me Down

The Ballad Of John And Yoko - Old Brown Shoe

Come Together - Something*

Let It Be - You Know My Name (Look Up The Number)

*Released as double a-side, but go ahead and pick a favourite anyway! 


If you want, you can pick which side you prefer by copy/pasting my list, then highlighting your favourites. For example, here's mine:


Love Me Do - P.S. I Love You

Please Please Me - Ask Me Why

From Me To You - Thank You Girl

She Loves You - I'll Get You

I Want To Hold Your Hand - This Boy 

Can't Buy Me Love - You Can't Do That

A Hard Day's Night - Things We Said Today

I Feel Fine - She's A Woman

Ticket To Ride - Yes It Is 

Help! - I'm Down

We Can Work It Out - Day Tripper*

Paperback Writer - Rain

Yellow Submarine - Eleanor Rigby*

Penny Lane - Strawberry Fields Forever*  (undecided)

All You Need Is Love - Baby, You're a Rich Man (undecided)

Hello, Goodbye - I Am The Walrus

Lady Madonna - The Inner Light

Hey Jude - Revolution 

Get Back - Don't Let Me Down

The Ballad Of John And Yoko - Old Brown Shoe

Come Together - Something*

Let It Be - You Know My Name (Look Up The Number)

3 July 2012
9.51am
GeorgeTSimpson
Vienna, Austria
Hollywood Bowl
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Love Me Do/PS I Love You (Love Me Do is a bit boring)
Please Please Me/Ask Me Why (Please Please Me is a bit better)
From Me To You/Thank You Girl (Thank You Girl is really bad)
SHE LOVES YOU/I'll Get You (nearly the same (both not my favourites, I don't like the early beatles very much) but She Loves You is a bit better)
I Want To Hold Your Hand/This Boy (I Want To Hold Your Hand is boring and This Boy is okay)
Can't Buy Me Love/You Can't Do That (Can't Buy Me Love is a bit better)
A Hard Days Night/Things We Said Today (I like paul's part in A Hard Day's Night, John's is shit, though, so I prefer Things We Said Today, which is okay)
I Feel Fine/She's A Woman (I feel fine is boring, I like She's A Woman's rythm)
Ticket To Ride/Yes It Is (I feel fine is nice, yes it is is simply a rewrite of This Boy, but This Boy is million times better)
HELP!/I'm Down (Help! has nice harmonies and I don't like this little richard screaming rock'n'roll style of I'm Down so that's easy for me)
We Can Work It Out/Day Tripper (We Can Work It Out is very nice, Day Tripper too but We Can Work It Out is a bit better)
Yellow Submarine/Eleanor Rigby (Eleanor Rigby is okay, yellow submarine is one of the worst beatles songs)
Penny Lane/Strawberry Fields Forever (both are good, but Penny Lane is happier so i prefer it)
All You Need Is Love/Baby You're A Rich Man (All You Need Is Love is terrible, and Baby You're A Rich Man just boring so I prefer Baby You're A Rich Man (all in all the worst beatles single, Yellow Submarine has at least Eleanor Rigby))
Hello Goodbye/I Am The Walrus (Both are good but I Am The Walrus is a bit too psychodelic for me)
Lady Madonna/The Inner Light (both are awesome, but if i have to choose one, I will take the happier Lady Madonna)
Hey Jude/Revolution (Revolution is my favourite John song but Hey Jude is a bit better)
GET BACK/Don't Let Me Down (I'm a big fan of Get Back and Don't Let Me Down is, well, good, so I take Get Back)
The Ballad Of John And Yoko/Old Brown Shoe (both are amazing, but I take Old Brown Shoe because it's really awesome)
SOMETHING/Come Together (Something is very nice and come together misses a bridge so it gets boring when you listen to it many times)
LET IT BE/You Know My Name (Look Up The Number) (You Know My Name is funny but Let It Be is really a nice song)

Once there was a way to get back homewards. Once there was a way to get back home; sleep pretty darling do not cry. And I will sing a lullaby
3 July 2012
7.17pm
mr. Sun king coming together
Nowhere Land
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I tried to think of something powerful and moving… and failed.  "You were given a choice between war and dishonor - you chose dishonor, and you shall have war" - Winston Churchill
3 July 2012
7.34pm
Into the Sky with Diamonds
New York
Apple rooftop
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I don't recall ever thinking, "OMG, they released the wrong side of the single!!!"

I would have thought that had I been around when "Love Me Do / PS I Love You " was released.

[If I could only have "I Am The Walrus" or "Hello Goodbye" I'd pick the Walrus - but I understand EMI's decision to go with Hello.]

Since I consider "I Want To Hold Your Hand" to be one of their best song, I can't agree with any of you above; especially since "This Boy" is just an okay song elevated to B-side status by way of super harmonies.

"Into the Sky with Diamonds" (the Beatles and the Race to the Moon – a history)
3 July 2012
7.56pm
mr. Sun king coming together
Nowhere Land
Apple rooftop
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Here's the case for This Boy as I'd make it. There is one song that is similar to it - 1965's Yes It Is. However, I Want To Hold Your Hand was merely the latest in a line of great pop songs they did. However, I've always heard I Want To Hold Your Hand right after She Loves You, so maybe that's a cause.

I tried to think of something powerful and moving… and failed.  "You were given a choice between war and dishonor - you chose dishonor, and you shall have war" - Winston Churchill
3 July 2012
8.03pm
Zig
The Toppermost of the Poppermost
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To the fountain of perpetual mirth, Let it roll for all its worth.

Every Little Thing you buy from Amazon or iTunes will help the Beatles Bible if you use these links: Amazon | iTunes

4 July 2012
5.10am
BornInThe80s
The Top Ten Club
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Love Me Do – P.S. I Love You

Please Please MeAsk Me Why

From Me To YouThank You Girl

She Loves YouI'll Get You

I Want To Hold Your HandThis Boy 

Can't Buy Me LoveYou Can't Do That

A Hard Day's NightThings We Said Today

I Feel FineShe's A Woman

Ticket To Ride Yes It Is 

Help!I'm Down

We Can Work It OutDay Tripper*

Paperback Writer Rain

Yellow SubmarineEleanor Rigby*

Penny LaneStrawberry Fields Forever*

All You Need Is Love – Baby, You're a Rich Man

Hello, Goodbye – I Am The Walrus

Lady MadonnaThe Inner Light

Hey Jude – Revolution

Get BackDon't Let Me Down

The Ballad Of John And YokoOld Brown Shoe

Come TogetherSomething*

Let It Be – You Know My Name (Look Up The Number)


Some of those were harder than I thought! On a few that I couldn't choose I went with 'What plays as a better 'A' side than the other' Overall though it looks like I agree with their choices.

Try to realize it's all within yourself, no one else can make you change....
17 July 2012
9.46am
Buzzy
UK
A Beginning
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17 July 2012
10.09am
GeorgeTSimpson
Vienna, Austria
Hollywood Bowl
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I forgot paperback writer so:
PAPERBACK WRITER/Rain (both are nice but Paperback Writer is just, well, better)

Once there was a way to get back homewards. Once there was a way to get back home; sleep pretty darling do not cry. And I will sing a lullaby
17 July 2012
5.28pm
unknown
Nowhere Land
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17 July 2012
7.25pm
meanmistermustard
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Love Me Do – P.S. I Love You

Please Please MeAsk Me Why

From Me To YouThank You Girl

She Loves YouI'll Get You (used to be IGY but not now)

I Want To Hold Your HandThis Boy (darn close but those 3 part harmonies)

Can't Buy Me LoveYou Can't Do That

A Hard Day's NightThings We Said Today

I Feel FineShe's A Woman

Ticket To RideYes It Is

Help!I'm Down

We Can Work It OutDay Tripper*

Paperback Writer – Rain

Yellow SubmarineEleanor Rigby* (possibly the weakest single)

Penny LaneStrawberry Fields Forever*

All You Need Is LoveBaby, You're a Rich Man

Hello, Goodbye – I Am The Walrus

Lady MadonnaThe Inner Light

Hey Jude – Revolution (darn close but Hey Jude always grabs me by the nose every time i hear it)

Get BackDon't Let Me Down (darn close but there is something about DLMD)

The Ballad Of John And YokoOld Brown Shoe

Come TogetherSomething* (possibly their best single (thank you Mr Klein) but its strange not hearing maxwell immediately after)

Let It BeYou Know My Name (Look Up The Number) (for the weirdness of YKNM, unique and overlooked in every way. I think i prefer the Spector mix of LIB nowadays - more kick.) 

Don’t make your love suffer insecurities, trade the baggage of self to set another one free. ('Paper Skin' - Kendall Payne)
17 July 2012
9.59pm
IMDeWalrus
Terrace BC Canada
Decca
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Good topic -- and what a selection of songs!

 

Love Me Do – P.S. I Love You

Please Please MeAsk Me Why

From Me To YouThank You Girl

She Loves YouI'll Get You

I Want To Hold Your HandThis Boy 

Can't Buy Me LoveYou Can't Do That

A Hard Day's NightThings We Said Today

I Feel FineShe's A Woman

Ticket To RideYes It Is 

Help!I'm Down

We Can Work It OutDay Tripper*

Paperback Writer – Rain       (tough choice here)

Yellow SubmarineEleanor Rigby*    (probably my least favourite Beatles single)

Penny LaneStrawberry Fields Forever*

All You Need Is Love – Baby, You're a Rich Man

Hello, Goodbye – I Am The Walrus

Lady MadonnaThe Inner Light

Hey JudeRevolution   (toughest choice of all -- probably the best 45 by anyone in history)

Get BackDon't Let Me Down

The Ballad Of John And YokoOld Brown Shoe

Come TogetherSomething*

Let It Be – You Know My Name (Look Up The Number)

I've got nothing to say, but it's okay.. GOOD MORNING! GOOD MORNING!! GOOD MORNING!!!
17 July 2012
10.21pm
Into the Sky with Diamonds
New York
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It's easy to get "Beatle fatigue" (half intentional pun on "battle fatigue"):

Some songs you hear just so often that you get tired of them; by default, the B-side sounds fresher. Thus, these days I'd rather hear "Rain" than "Paperback Writer"

Having said that, it's hard to imagine centuries from now anyone considering "You Know My Name ..." to be better than "Let It Be"

Though I won't be around to collect, I am betting  that "Let It Be" will be part of our cultural heritage the way "Ode to Joy" is today while "You Know My Name" will only be known to the then-members of the Beatlesbible Forum (run by Joe's great-great-great ... grandchildren).

(Same goes for "I Want To Hold Your Hand/ This Boy" and "She Love Your / I'll get you" without the same gravitas)

"Into the Sky with Diamonds" (the Beatles and the Race to the Moon – a history)
22 July 2012
12.11pm
VictoR3mix
Sydney, Australia
Casbah Coffee Club
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23 July 2012
4.22am
Dipsy
Turned left at Greenland
Carnegie Hall
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"I'm not going to change the way I look or the way I feel to conform to anything. I've always been a freak. So I've been a freak all my life and I have to live with that, you know? I'm just one of those people."
23 July 2012
4.58pm
FlyOn13
New Jersey, USA
Carnegie Hall
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Love Me Do,
Please Please Me,
From Me To You,
SHE LOVES YOU,
This Boy,
YOU CAN'T DO THAT,
A Hard Day's Night,
I FEEL FINE,
YES IT IS,
HELP!,
Day Tripper,
PAPERBACK WRITER,
Eleanor Rigby,
Penny Lane,
All You Need Is Love,
I Am The Walrus,
Lady Madonna,
Hey Jude,
GET BACK,
The Ballad Of John And Yoko,
SOMETHING,
LET IT BE.

“I was special. I always have been. Why didn't anyone notice me?" -John Lennon
7 August 2012
3.54am
Drake 42681
Vancouver Island,BC,Canada
Casbah Coffee Club
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24 July 2012
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Love Me Do - P.S. I Love You

Please Please Me - Ask Me Why

From Me To You - Thank You Girl

She Loves You - I'll Get You

I Want To Hold Your Hand - This Boy

Can't Buy Me Love - You Can't Do That

A Hard Day's Night - Things We Said Today

I Feel Fine - She's A Woman

Ticket To Ride - Yes It Is

Help! - I'm Down (this is a tie i cannot choose)

We Can Work It Out - Day Tripper (tie again)

Paperback Writer - Rain (PW by a hair)

Yellow Submarine - Elanor Rigby (i agree with IMDeWalrus worst single)

Penny Lane - Strawberry Fields Forever

All You Need Is Love - Baby You're A Rich Man

Hello Goodbye - I Am The Walrus (ok i promise no more ties.....)

Lady Madona - The Inner Light

Hey Jude - Revolution (.... guess i suck at this.. CURSE YOU BEATLES AND YOUR AMAZING SONGS!!!!!paul-mccartneyRRROOAAAAAAR!!!!

Get Back - Don't Let Me Down

The Ballad Of John And Yoko - Old Brown Shoe

Come Together - Something

Let It Be - You Know My Name (Look Up The Number)....................................................JK Let It Be

8 August 2012
1.19am
Into the Sky with Diamonds
New York
Apple rooftop
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To me, "Eleanor Rigby" is one of the greatest songs - not just of the rock era but of all time: beautiful melody, poignant lyrics, perfect arrangement, powerful and touching voice.

And "Yellow Submarine," well, like it or not and simple as it is, it's the most well-known Beatle song out there.

So I'd argue that this is one of the best singles ever; right up there with "Penny Lane/Strawberry F" "Hey Jude"/"Revolution" ...

"Into the Sky with Diamonds" (the Beatles and the Race to the Moon – a history)
10 August 2012
6.36am
vonbontee
Inside a Letterbox
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I won't go so far as to say that I PREFER "You Know My Name" (one of the Beatles' most unique, off-the-rubber-wall creations) to "Let It Be" (fairly turgid, lesser rehash of "Hey Jude" ) but that's only because the butchered "(...Number)" on the b-side is far inferior to the full uncut 6:20 version. To imagiine the boys putting something so long and ridiculous (yet metiticulously assembled and performed!) within less than a millimetre of vinyl-width of something so serious as "Let It Be"! In some ways that's an even greater breach than between "Eleanor Rigby" and "Yellow Submarine", which were after all both basically narratives, however much else they were opposed.

(Another great thing about "You Know My Name" never ever mentioned by anybody is what a great showcase it is for Paul's piano skills! Same chord changes throughout but articulated differently in every section of the song, throwing in fake ska and cocktail latin-jazz and plain old idiot-savant plink-plonk, just great stuff.)

Other than that one, the only b-sides I can unhesitatingy say I definitely prefer are "PS I Love You", "You Can't Do That", "Rain" and "I Am The Walrus". Toughest choices (ie. b-sides that are just as good) would be "She's A Woman", "Baby You're A Rich Man" and "Revolution". (A "Hey Jude" shortened to maybe 5 1/2 minutes would definitely have the edge over "Revolution".)

Biggest gap in quality between A & B side: "She Loves You/I'll Get You". One of the most exciting singles of all time backed with one of the Beatles 4 or five worst song ever! "I'll Get You" is a drag,a well-known drag, from the soggy "Oh yeah, oh yeah" of the opening right through to the end. They just sound bored. I've owned the single for nearly 40 years (an original on the Capitol label that my mum bought in '64!) and haven't ever liked that b-side.

I just want to play. I’d like to think I could work opposite Sinatra, B.B. King, the Beatles, or a polka band... - Jazz musician Rahsaan Roland Kirk, 1967
13 January 2013
2.53am
Beatles in the Blood
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