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What's your favourite beatles album
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18 November 2015
12.19am
BeatlesJR
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The White Album is very easy for me to accept as the impossible choice of choosing a single favorite, essentially because what makes me love the beatles so much is how each song is literally it's own microcosm on it's own.  That's why, I don't find any song to be filler on the White Album, because each song has something to offer.  Just as all their other albums do.  The White Album has the most songs I listen to repeatedly, and probably the most that I consider my favorite overall.

Happiness is.. Dear Prudence..Rocky Raccoon..LongLongLong..Cry Baby Cry...Sexy Sadie..While my guitar...I will...Mother Nature's Son...Yer Blues..Bungalow Bill... I'm So Tired...Good night...

It's strange but, I've actually over time come to enjoy the bookend eras moreso than that central 3 album stretch of Help, Rubber, Revolver, even Sgt Pepper slightly.  Not that I won't get into them ever again, but I enjoy the cynicism of late John because I feel like it's more his genuine character even if he wasn't putting that same level of "effort" into his songs almost as if his songs are gesture drawings so feel more emotive, and then their earlier stuff when all of them were just on a rush during beatlemania.  I used to think Revolver was my favorite, and it very well may become that again one day.

So, after White Album, I think Hard Day's Night is my comfortable 2nd.  For me, the trio of Happy just to dance with you, Tell me why, and Can't Buy Me Love are almost unparalleled to me in how great they are. They just sound perfect in what they are doing, for me at least.  And the rest of the album is great anyway.

3rd... is tough.  So many vie for third. PPM, MMT, Abbey, and Let it Be are all options here.  I think personally, MMT does it for me, thanks to Fool on the Hill, I Am The Walrus, Hello Goodbye, and Baby You're A Rich Man (my personal favorite of the album.)  I have alot of friends who think Abbey Road is the best, so I don't have quite the same connection to it that others do, although Octopus Garden, Oh Darling, and Shes so Heavy is quite the trio for me.

 

So, White Album, Hard Days Night, then Magical Mystery Tour is my top 3. 

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18 November 2015
2.22am
Wigwam
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First two....Ditto

Then there are the others which apart from PPM,LIB and BFS I just could not be without.

 

I wouldn't want to be with those 3 either......

18 November 2015
3.03pm
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Zig
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BeatlesJR said

...each song has something to offer.  Just as all their other albums do.  

Amen.

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18 November 2015
3.10pm
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meanmistermustard
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Zig said

BeatlesJR said

...each song has something to offer.  Just as all their other albums do.  

Amen.

Yip.

'Hold Me Tight' offers the chance to skip ahead and get to 'I Wanna Be Your Man'.

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18 November 2015
3.16pm
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Zig
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I'll be chuckling about that one for a while.

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18 November 2015
3.30pm
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limitlessundyinglove
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The White Album is a complete and utter masterpiece in my opinion, so that's my favorite.ahdn_george_08  It's probably my favorite album of all time, alongside Fleetwood Mac's Tusk and Queen's A Night At The Opera.  I like the simpler arrangements and I especially love how each of the songs compliment one another.  It's sorta like one big medley.  

My second favorite would have to be Abbey Road.  It's very memorable and very well produced.  George is just awesome on that album, not just for his songwriting, but also for his guitar playing on songs like Octopus's Garden and I Want You (She's So Heavy).

My third is Rubber Soul because most of the songs are great and I can just pop it in at any time, no matter what mood I'm in.

Oh what the heck?  I'll just make another list I guess...

 

13. Yellow Submarine (duh!)

12. With The Beatles

11. Beatles For Sale

10. Please Please Me

9. Let It Be

8. A Hard Day's Night

7. Help!

6. Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band (great album, but too much Paul and not enough Georgeahdn_george_05)

5. Magical Mystery Tour

4. Revolver

3. Rubber Soul

2. Abbey Road

1. The Beatles (White Album)

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18 November 2015
6.24pm
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Bongo
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Magical Mystery Tour wasn’t a U.K. LP????? a-hard-days-night-paul-11

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18 November 2015
7.46pm
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limitlessundyinglove
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Bongo said
Magical Mystery Tour wasn’t a U.K. LP????? a-hard-days-night-paul-11

Yeah, I know.a-hard-days-night-paul-4 But I put it on my list because it's been retroactively added into the main Beatles canon, so it's the version of Magical Mystery Tour that I'm used to.  I have made an iTunes playlist of the British EP version, so I usually just listen to that.

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19 November 2015
6.55pm
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long long long
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limitlessundyinglove said
The White Album is a complete and utter masterpiece in my opinion, so that's my favorite.ahdn_george_08  It's probably my favorite album of all time, alongside Fleetwood Mac's Tusk and Queen's A Night At The Opera.  I like the simpler arrangements and I especially love how each of the songs compliment one another.  It's sorta like one big medley.  

My second favorite would have to be Abbey Road.  It's very memorable and very well produced.  George is just awesome on that album, not just for his songwriting, but also for his guitar playing on songs like Octopus's Garden and I Want You (She's So Heavy).

My third is Rubber Soul because most of the songs are great and I can just pop it in at any time, no matter what mood I'm in.

Oh what the heck?  I'll just make another list I guess...

 

13. Yellow Submarine (duh!)

12. With The Beatles

11. Beatles For Sale

10. Please Please Me

9. Let It Be

8. A Hard Day's Night

7. Help!

6. Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band (great album, but too much Paul and not enough Georgeahdn_george_05)

5. Magical Mystery Tour

4. Revolver

3. Rubber Soul

2. Abbey Road

1. The Beatles (White Album)

Pepper is wonderful and brilliant and a watershed moment of popular music and culture and what have you, but I love The White Album's darker edge to it. Ian MacDonald describes it beautifully thus;

Before the Leicester group Family issued their innovative debut album Music in a Doll’s House in August 1968, The Beatles had been planning to call their new work A Doll’s House (supposedly after Ibsen). The clash was unfortunate since this was an apt title for this musical attic of odds and ends, some charming, others sinister, many tinged with childhood memories, all absorbed in the interior worlds of their authors. There is a secret unease in this music, betraying the turmoil beneath the group’s business-as-usual façade. Shadows lengthen over the album as it progresses: the slow afternoon of The Beatles’ career. Sadly, none of this is captured in Richard Hamilton’s modishly empty sleeve-design. One can only assume that this is because he wasn’t able to hear the music before setting to work, since its crepuscular quality is so tangible. Certainly no other product of the noon-bright idiom of Sixties pop offers as many associates of guarded privacy and locked rooms, or concludes in such disturbing, dreamlike darkness.

19 November 2015
7.00pm
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long long long
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'The slow afternoon of The Beatles' career.'

What a perfect sentence. Love that guy's writing, even I disagree with his general argument that their clear creative peak begun with the opening chord of A Hard Day's Night and ended with the closing chord of A Day In The Life.

19 November 2015
7.11pm
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ewe2
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long long long said

'The slow afternoon of The Beatles' career.'

What a perfect sentence. Love that guy's writing, even I disagree with his general argument that their clear creative peak begun with the opening chord of A Hard Day's Night and ended with the closing chord of A Day In The Life.

Nice writing but still inaccurate: the cover was white because the Beatles wanted it that way. They actually wanted it to be transparent but EMI baulked, so they settled for white. This is the problem with MacDonald, he puts a good paragraph together and totally blows its impact by fantasy facts. This "creepy album" theme also seems to be a favourite of music critics; I'm not sure who copied who though. My issue with that approach is that it's made out to be something weird but given the relentlessly upbeat sense of their previous albums, no one thought to pay attention to the darker songs on those. But, come the White Album and we can make boring pronouncements on the afternoon of the Beatles career, and this isn't just MacDonald's fault. May I remind people that from the Beatles point of view at the time, it wasn't. So much rubbish from music critics attempting to sound wise can obstruct the view, avoid falling into their rut if you can.

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long long long

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19 November 2015
7.41pm
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Ron Nasty
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Where do you get the idea that they wanted the sleeve to be transparent for the White Album, @ewe2?

I certainly can't think of anyone directly involved being quoted with that. @Joe has a page on "The title and cover work" in his article on the album which explains in detail, using quotes from Paul and Richard Hamilton, the development of the design.

Hamilton describes the proposition he made to Paul at their first meeting on the subject, and all the basics of how it turned out are in Hamilton's original suggestion:

Since Sergeant Pepper was so over the top, I explained, "I would be inclined to do a very prissy thing, almost like a limited edition." He didn't discourage me so I went on to propose a plain White Album; if that were too clean and empty, then maybe we could print a ring of brown stain to look as if a coffee cup had been left on it — but that was thought a bit too flippant. I also suggested that they might number each copy, to create the ironic situation of a numbered edition of something like five million copies. This was agreed, but then I began to feel a bit guilty at putting their double album under plain wrappers; even the lettering is casual, almost invisible, a blind stamping. I suggested it could be jazzed up with a large edition print, an insert that would be even more glamorous than a normal sleeve.

Do you have a source for them wanting a transparent sleeve?

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19 November 2015
7.54pm
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Starr Shine?
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Annadog40 said
It's still Beatles For Sale

Hasn't changed.

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19 November 2015
8.06pm
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ewe2
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Ron Nasty said

Where do you get the idea that they wanted the sleeve to be transparent for the White Album, @ewe2?
Do you have a source for them wanting a transparent sleeve?

I heard about it recently, buggered if I can remember where 🙁 If I recover the source, I'll put it up, it could have been a podcast or a website I looked at in the last few weeks.

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19 November 2015
8.31pm
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Ron Nasty
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Could I suggest, @ewe2, that it's more likely your source that is wrong (especially if you only came across it recently) and not MacDonald who closely echoes Paul and Richard Hamilton's account?

The only alternate artwork that has been said to have been created for what became the White Album, by John Byrne in 1968 under the moniker "Patrick", was later used by EMI for The Beatles Ballads:

alternate-White-Album-cover.jpgImage Enlarger

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19 November 2015
8.47pm
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ewe2
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Ron Nasty said

Could I suggest, @ewe2, that it's more likely your source that is wrong (especially if you only came across it recently) and not MacDonald who closely echoes Paul and Richard Hamilton's account?

It's certainly possible. That doesn't invalidate the problems with MacDonald though.

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19 November 2015
9.11pm
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Ron Nasty
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I understand the problems some have with MacDonald. Some of that criticism is fair, though overall I like his book. It's also important to criticise him for the right things though. If you look at the comments on Joe's article, there's a wonderful bit near the top where various people come up with this story - based on their memories - that the White Album was originally released with a picture of four naked Beatles and Yoko, and that it was immediately pulled but that some copies survive!!! Lots of people come up with wild and wacky theories about what did and didn't happen, and especially in this internet age when people can suggest anything, it's always important to check other sources. I'm happy to say, that had The Beatles and EMI had a battle over a transparent sleeve, @Joe's article on the album would have detailed it.

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20 November 2015
5.40am
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natureaker
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Today I think it's The White Albuma-hard-days-night-george-9

 

"Everything will be okay in the end. If it's not okay, it's not the end" - John Lennon

 

20 November 2015
8.03am
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Joe
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@ewe2 @Ron Nasty The source is almost certainly correct, because it's George Harrison!

Via http://galacticramble.blogspot.....-have.html

Image Enlarger

I'll update my White Album article to reflect this, because I only found out about it recently. Stand by for changes.

I think I first read about the Ibsen/Dolls House thing in Lewisohn's Sessions, but I don't know if it surfaced before then. I'm not sure that the Beatles Ballads illustration was ever really a contender for the White Album artwork, though I may be wrong. AFAIK they always intended to work with Richard Hamilton.

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20 November 2015
8.58am
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Ron Nasty
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@Joe, @ewe2 Who'd have thunk it!!! Shows why it's so annoying that certain important books are either long out of print, or have only ever been made available in expensive limited editions, making them difficult for us mere mortals to access.

With the Byrne artwork, I've seen that referred to as being created for the White Album in more than one book since the early '80s. I think it could well make sense if The Beatles and EMI were in dispute over what the sleeve would be. Since Apple were highly unlikely to have provided EMI with unused artwork at the time of The Beatles Ballads, it could well be something EMI itself had commissioned in 1968, without The Beatles knowledge, in case they couldn't come to an agreement. While the 1967 contract protected The Beatles say on the music, it did not do the same on the artwork of the packaging. It would not be at all surprising if EMI got themselves a back-up.

EDIT: Having just Googled "the beatles john byrne", there are many references to the artwork, and that it was commissioned by The Beatles. It appears to have been commissioned when they still intending to use A Doll's House. Here's just a couple.

The Scotsman (11 April 2015):

...it was The Beatles who gave Byrne his first commission for an album cover in 1968, the year after his first solo exhibition at Portal Gallery, in London...

The Sunday Herald (24 May 2015):

Throughout the late 1960s and early 1970s, Byrne painted and made a living in London, illustrating covers for books and records. He did sleeves for albums by Gerry Rafferty and Donovan and a design originally commissioned for what would become The Beatles' White Album eventually saw the light of day on a 1980 release, The Beatles Ballads.

Dangerous Minds (29 May 2014):

"Patrick" became a star and was feted by London’s chattering classes, even having The Beatles commission "Patrick" to paint a cover for their 1968 White Album (it was later used on their Ballads compilation in 1980).

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