Recorded as an introduction to Ringo Starr’s composition ‘Don’t Pass Me By’, ‘A Beginning’ remained unissued until 1996, when it appeared on Anthology 3.
Following ‘Free As A Bird’ and ‘Real Love’, The Beatles had intended to release a third reunion single, an adaptation of a 1970s John Lennon demo called ‘Now And Then’. However, George Harrison was reportedly unhappy with the group’s progress made on it, and it was shelved until its release in 2023.
In its place, ‘A Beginning’ appeared as the first track on Anthology 3. It also appeared in the Yellow Submarine film, just before the ‘Eleanor Rigby’ sequence.
With little or no involvement from The Beatles, ‘A Beginning’ was composed and scored by George Martin, and recorded on 22 July 1968, using the same orchestra that appeared on Good Night’.
An edit combining take four of ‘A Beginning’ and take seven of ‘Don’t Pass Me By’ was released in 2018 on the super deluxe edition of the 50th anniversary reissue of the White Album.