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What should have been the White Album A-side single?
11 March 2015
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ewe2
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[sp_show_poll id="66"]

I was thinking about the White Album today and I'm somewhat appalled (audible groans!) that Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da was the A-side. Really? 30-odd songs and they picked that?! Not knocking the B-side with While My Guitar Gently Weeps , but what do you think should have been the A-side? Do you want a totally different B-side too?

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11 March 2015
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Back In The USSR .

 

I don't like Ob-La-Di.

While My Guitar Gently Weeps , while it is a great song, is too slow in tempo to be a single.

Helter Skelter , though it is also a great song, is just not "commercial" enough to be a single.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun - again, a great song - is not a good single for the same reason as Helter Skelter .

Birthday might work, actually, but when it's between Back In The USSR and Birthday , I choose Back In The USSR .

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11 March 2015
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'OBD²' is commercial and radio-friendly tho it should be said that it wasnt a single in the UK nor even the US until years later. In those two countries there was no single chosen from the White Album .

A-side maybe 'Dear Prudence ', starts slowly but does build-up and get louder - same can be said for 'Cry Baby Cry ' but its not a single. Not sure there is much on the 'White Album ' that is an obvious single; like most i'm not much of a fan of 'OBD²', its fine but nothing memorable. Could just throw hell to the water and give Ringo his first a-side with 'Don't Pass Me By ' (it was a b-side in Sardinia or somewhere). 

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11 March 2015
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meanmistermustard said

'OBD²' is commercial and radio-friendly tho it should be said that it wasnt a single in the UK nor even the US until years later. In those two countries there was no single chosen from the White Album .

Yeah I forgot about that. But it was number one here in Australia and Austria, Switzerland and Japan! In 1968, no less! This is probably why I was forced to sing it in primary school music class (ugh). It's still worth a think about, your suggestion of Dear Prudence is interesting!

edit: I went hunting about the Australian single and it seems to have been released by Apple/EMI Sydney in February 1969, so Australia's no 1 was obviously a little later.

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11 March 2015
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I've got a copy of the 'OBD²' single from some country but i forget which. The UK had to suffer Marmalade's cover (even got to #1 blue-meanie).

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11 March 2015
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meanmistermustard said

'OBD²' is commercial and radio-friendly tho it should be said that it wasnt a single in the UK nor even the US until years later. In those two countries there was no single chosen from the White Album .

 

Right. I always considered the WA single as 'Hey Jude ' / 'Revolution '. However, if two songs were to be plucked from that album for a single, I would agree with @Necko and go with 'Back In The USSR ' for the A side. I'd put 'Helter Skelter ' on the B.

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11 March 2015
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ewe2 said
[SNIP]

I was thinking about the White Album today and I'm somewhat appalled (audible groans!) that Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da was the A-side. Really? 30-odd songs and they picked that?! Not knocking the B-side with While My Guitar Gently Weeps , but what do you think should have been the A-side? Do you want a totally different B-side too?

No single as with many of their albums, which used to make collecting all their songs a pain if you couldn't get the 'companion' 45.

I voted for the song which appalled you, I like it, and as mmm noted it is a very commercial track.

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11 March 2015
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Zig said

meanmistermustard said

'OBD²' is commercial and radio-friendly tho it should be said that it wasnt a single in the UK nor even the US until years later. In those two countries there was no single chosen from the White Album .

 

Right. I always considered the WA single as 'Hey Jude ' / 'Revolution '. However, if two songs were to be plucked from that album for a single, I would agree with @Necko and go with 'Back In The USSR ' for the A side. I'd put 'Helter Skelter ' on the B.

Same here. And Lady Madonna was a WA single for me too. Strange how we consider that White Album singles, since none of those A and B sides were actually on the White Album . Also agree on Back In The USSR being a good A side.  Otherwise I'd go for Obladi Oblada as well. I think Dear Prudence is a bit too..slow? I don't know.

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11 March 2015
9.48pm
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Is it also strange how "Paperback Writer /Rain " are considered Revolver singles? Remember, the Beatles, with George M., had a rule about singles not being on albums. Which I think is very honourable of them, at least by the standards of their time. a-hard-days-night-john-1a-hard-days-night-paul-8a-hard-days-night-george-3a-hard-days-night-ringo-4

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11 March 2015
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I'd say 'Paperback Writer ' and 'Rain ' are 'Revolver ' singles and the same with 'Hey Jude ' and 'Revolution ' with the 'White Album ' purely because they were recorded during the sessions for the albums whereas i wouldnt for 'Lady Madonna '/'The Inner Light ' as they weren't. 

But then i think about the others and i havent a clue if what i wrote i agree with.

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11 March 2015
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Silly Girl said
Remember, the Beatles, with George M., had a rule about singles not being on albums. Which I think is very honourable of them, at least by the standards of their time. a-hard-days-night-john-1a-hard-days-night-paul-8a-hard-days-night-george-3a-hard-days-night-ringo-4

george-martinValue For Money! brian-epstein

Well... they did break that rule a few times, though.

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11 March 2015
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I have come here not to vote, but to sneer at foreigners who know no better.a-hard-days-night-john-1Sneer! Sneer!

The White Album  single was the great and glorious Hey Jude  Revolution . Whatever else you funny, funny people from Bongo Bongo Land got was just a money making grab by your local branch of EMI an added bonus.

Oh My Bra was not issued in the UK until '76, and was backed by Julia , not While My Guitar Gently Lachrymals. The single before it, promoting Rock And Roll Music  was Back In The USSR  b/w Twist And Shout .

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11 March 2015
11.49pm
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Necko objected 

Silly Girl stated  
Remember, the Beatles, with George M., had a rule about singles not being on albums. Which I think is very honourable of them, at least by the standards of their time. a-hard-days-night-john-1a-hard-days-night-paul-8a-hard-days-night-george-3a-hard-days-night-ringo-4

george-martinValue For Money! brian-epstein

Well... they did break that rule a few times, though.

Allow me to rephrase that as "the Beatles and George M. had a general rule about singles not being on albums." You know what I mean. 

Nice elegant, sporting rant, @Ron Nasty. Very admirably stated. apple01

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12 March 2015
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Heh heh, sorry @Beatlebug, but I always have to disagree with 'biblers when then mention that no-singles-on-the-album, value-for-money aspect. I think that real value for the money would've been releasing 16-song albums with the latest single and b-side chosen from among those 16 to also be released on a 45. 

16 songs on a single piece of vinyl, without having to buy a SECOND little piece of vinyl to get those two orphaned tracks! That's the way to go.

Let's see, White Album single. What should it be, a John song or a Paul song? How about NEITHER? Put "...My Guitar" out there as George's first A-side! As consolation prize for only getting his usual four tracks, having to leave "Not Guilty " in the vault, etc. 

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12 March 2015
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How about Not Guilty  backed with What's The New Mary Jane ?

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12 March 2015
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vonbontee snuckered* 
Heh heh, sorry @Beatlebug, but I always have to disagree with 'biblers when they mention that no-singles-on-the-album, value-for-money aspect. I think that real value for the money would've been releasing 16-song albums with the latest single and b-side chosen from among those 16 to also be released on a 45. 

16 songs on a single piece of vinyl, without having to buy a SECOND little piece of vinyl to get those two orphaned tracks! That's the way to go.
<snip>

Sounds good to our modern sensibilities, but is there room for 16 tracks on a piece of vinyl (from 1964)? Would the DJs play the designated "A side" and "B side" of the single on the radio if it were part of an album? Or are you saying that the single would be a single and part of the album? Which would be pretty fab-- if one could get away with 16 tracks. 

Anyway, we digress. Back on topic... 

 

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12 March 2015
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Back In The USSR , without a doubt!  Forget that old rule about not having a single on the LP, that was Beatlemania era! a-hard-days-night-paul-11

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12 March 2015
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In an ideal universe While My Guitar Gently Weeps became the A side while its foil Happiness Is A Warm Gun took its former place as the B side. As it stands, I'm more than content to see Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da as the A side. 

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12 March 2015
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Entharsis said
In an ideal universe While My Guitar Gently Weeps became the A side while its foil Happiness Is A Warm Gun took its former place as the B side. As it stands, I'm more than content to see Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da as the A side. 

While I love the song I have always thought it rambled a bit, so for me it has always been a brilliant album track but wouldn't have made such a good single.

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12 March 2015
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Silly Girl said
Sounds good to our modern sensibilities, but is there room for 16 tracks on a piece of vinyl (from 1964)? Would the DJs play the designated "A side" and "B side" of the single on the radio if it were part of an album? Or are you saying that the single would be a single and part of the album? Which would be pretty fab-- if one could get away with 16 tracks. 

Anyway, we digress. Back on topic... 

Well, Bob Dylan was releasing 50-minute albums at around the same time, so I think an 8-song, 20 minute album side from the Beatles would be possible. And having the single taken from the album was done most of the time in the U.S. And the singles would still have their A-side promoted by the djs. (Also by the albums themselves, which would occasionally have "Contains the hit single...!" stamped on the cover.) But now I'm going to drive myself crazy thinking of 16-song albums from 1966 or earlier. (There HAS to be one!) 

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