Stand Out Albums has been a showcase for my favorite albums across the vast performers that I love. Covering a little bit of everything from classic rock to country hits, much like Key Movies of My Life, it has been the albums that shaped me. This year, I am going to take a slightly different approach by discussing the discographies of my favorite musicians, album by album, in release order. So, let’s continue with the second album from one of my all time favorite bands, With the Beatles by…well…The Beatles of course.
Please note, for simplicities sake we are reviewing the original Parlophone releases as they were released in Europe and not the Capitol Record releases which propelled the Beatles fandom in America. Don’t get me wrong, the Capitol Records were fine but, to me, the original Parlophone records give you a much broader sense of their style and more accurate evolution of their songwriting skills.
Why This Album?
As I mentioned previously, The Beatles were my first musical passion. There was something about the four mop tops from Liverpool that spoke to my young developing mind, ultimately influencing the rest of my life in way’s I could not begin to fathom. With The Beatles was the the second release from this iconic band and, although it was released the same year as their debut album, Please Please me, it was met with nothing but universal acclaim. Hitting number 1 on the UK and German charts this album marked the true beginning of Beatlemania in the UK.
Once again, George Martin took the reigns keeping the four Liverpudlians on target and sounding phenomenal. Unlike their first release, it includes several cover songs that would soon become the definitive version of these songs. Between songs like Please Mr Postman, Roll Over Beethoven and Devil in Her Heart, it is now hard to hear these songs sung by anyone other than the Beatles forever cementing these and, several others, (somewhat unfairly) as Beatles Songs although the credit goes to artists like Chuck Berry, Richard Drapkin and many others. The thing is, The Beatles didn’t just cover these songs, they injected their own style into them, making them as much theirs as the original creators. That, is only a small part of what made the Beatles so great, in that, even this early in their career, they already had a definitive style that was unmistakable in every way.
This album contains one of my all time favorite covers that I occasionally love singing myself. The track, Till There Was You from the film The Music Man. I am not sure what it is about this tune but man it is just one that has always stuck with me.
Another cover that always hits me is Devil in Her Heart by Richard Drapkin. It’s a tremendous effort sung by Harrison and does not disappoint.
Speaking of Harrison, this album contains George’s first solo tune and it is tremendous. Entitled Don’t Bother Me, you can hear that early Harrison style beginning to emerge.
Ok, Where do I get it?
As with any of the Beatles discography, this one is thankfully readily available. You can get it here from one of our favorite record stores or, on Spotify with pretty much every other Beatles release. No matter where you hear it, give it a spin, I am convinced you will find something there that will capture your heart as well.
Until Next week,
Late to the Game 1/12/20201
Thanks for reading, If you would like to read more reviews I have a weekly series called Key Movies Of My Life that comes out every Thursday and also check out some retro tv goodness with the ongoing series Retro TV Reviews here. You can also find a few of my other Music Reviews Here.
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