The Beatles Lost Songs
Enough time has now passed since 1969 to have many great Beatle songs buried, unknown to anyone under 40. The one thing about this band, when you bought their LPs you got 12-14 songs that were all very good cuts. The ones that were released as singles and on the the radio, were considered to be cream of the crop by the boys and producer George Martin, a guru in the studio. However, that did not put down the others on the LP. So, a consumer got their money's worth ($4-7 for an LP).
Like today, the Beatles' music was imitated. A dead ringer released in 1966 was called "Lies". It was done by four college students in the US called The Knickerbockers. It shot straight to the Top Ten because everyone thought it was a new Beatle song. It remains the perfect Beatle imitation from the vocals to guitar, all eerily like the Fab Four.
The Beatles only real competition up until the end were The Rolling Stones. The Stones were always one step behind them in everything, privately John and Mick were great friends.
Most will agree that one could seldom find a song that they really hated on any of their LPs and most felt their money was well spent, they could feel assured that their LP would have at least 4-6 great songs. Since a single cost $1 (2 songs), one could estimate the album's worth. Today's bands put out a lot of rehashed material, guitar licks or vocals that were originally done before them. Their CDs might have up to four great tracks, the rest, you skip over or tolerate. U2 is perhaps an exception, but even they are not as consistent of producing great songs on every CD. The Beatles were. Taylor Swift comes closer to achieving what they did.
The Lost Songs are those lost and unknown gems that are on their LPs, these are not the ones they wrote for other artists (like the Stones). Of course, they are subjective, but here is a list in no particular ranking:
- Paperback Writer\Rain
- Money\Mr. Postman
- The Word\It Won't Be Long\Not a Second Time
- Everything Little Thing\Roll Over Beethoven
- What You're Doing\No Reply
- Drive My Car\For No One
- Ticket To Ride\I've Just Seen A Face
- Dizzy Miss Lizzy\Hey Bulldog
- It's Only Love\You've Got To Hide Your Love Away
- I am a Walrus\Baby You're a Rich Man
- I'll Follow the Sun\Kansas City
- Eight Days a Week\Leave My Kitten Alone
- I don't Want to Spoil the Party\Tomorrow Never Knows
- Norwegion Wood\Run For Your Life
- When I Get Home\You Can't Do That
- I'll Be Back\If I Fell\And I Love Her
- I Should Have Known Better\Any Time At all
- Getting Better\Good Morning Good Morning
- Reprise of Sgt. Pepper Lonely Hearts Club Band
- She's Leaving home\I'm Down\Taxman
- She's So Heavy\The End
Their 1996 release, Free As A bird, is quite remarkable since John's raw demo was used for the vocals. Two unreleased songs they did come to mind: Leave My Kitten Alone, a cover, was one destined for their first or second LP up until the very end. However, a decision was made not to use it. The song sat in the vaults until 1995, when it was finally released. This perhaps the best gem of a lost song. Another gem is their 1967 Christmas song, Christmas Time Is Here Again. This little song was only released to their fan club members. While short in duration, the tune's melody is so infectious. It is their ONE xmas song and quite good. Demos of I'm In Love do exist. This song John wrote in 1963, did a demo, and then did not like enough. Yet, the song was never forgot because in the early 70's, John did another demo on a piano. Clearly, he liked the chord progression.
History notes that the heavens and stars were lined up when The Beatles formed or they were like a highly crafted Swiss watch, and if any one of them failed, the Band would be off. If you dismiss this, consider listening to Lennon's or McCartney's LPs AFTER the break up in the early 70s. Both lacked any worthwhile material. John's most famous song after was "Imagine". And Paul's, Maybe I'm Amazed, was actually a song he performed for their Get Back LP in 1968, but was not completed and lost. It was clear that together, L&M balanced each other's extreme tastes in music. John, a rocker and blues guy, witty yet angry. Paul, happy go lucky, bouncy, light, more versatile in style. Their solo LPs are extreme because it is too much of the same type of music. John was angry and bitter. Paul was singing about stupid things.
Then, think of this: When John and Paul were just babies, their future producer, George Martin, was 18 on board a British Naval Carrier. When the Beatles finally went to their last demo recording (which was luck) it was with EMI and Martin was a 35 yr old looking for a new artist in 1962. They, as people, immediately clicked. They got on great. The rest is history. It took many years for the stars to line up, for destiny to begin, but The Beatles were meant to be.