The Beatles' First

Debut UK Release: August 4, 1967

Polydor Records

Produced by: Bert Kaempfert

Side One

 

  1. Ain't She Sweet

  2. Cry for a Shadow

  3. Let's Dance

  4. My Bonnie

  5. Take Out Some Insurance On Me, Baby

  6. What'd I Say

 

"Ain't She Sweet" lead vocal by John Lennon  |  Songs: "Let's Dance", "What'd I Say", "Ruby Baby" and "Ya Ya" listed as Tony Sheridan & The Beat Brothers. All other songs listed as just Tony Sheridan.

Side Two

 

  1. Sweet Georgia Brown

  2. The Saints

  3. Ruby Baby

  4. Why

  5. Nobody's Child

  6. Ya Ya

Needless to say, 1964 was the year of The Beatles beginning dominance - however, it was far from being the their first year of making music and recording sessions. One of their earlier jobs was to back British artist, Tony Sheridan. In 1963 and 1964, a long list of collections began springing up, most of them has less to do with The Beatles being The Beatles, and more to do with just the fact that it was The Beatles appearing anywhere.

 

The Beatles' First  was released to capitalize on the Beatles new found fame. And technically it can be considered somewhat of being a first, but in the scheme of things, this is just the members of The Beatles (minus Ringo) backing Sheridan, with very little imput of Lennon or McCartney. And again, much like Vee-Jay Records' quick money making releases, this album has been revamped several times with different titles and varied track listings. But all releases are relatively the same.

 

This album got a 2004 remaster deluxe edition as a double CD [PICTURED HERE] 

Side One

 

  1. My Bonnie

  2. Skinny Minnie

  3. Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin On

  4. I Know Baby

  5. You Are My Sunshine

  6. Ready Teddy

Side Two

 

  1. The Saints

  2. Hallelujah, I Love Her So

  3. Let's Twist Again

  4. Sweet Georgia Brown

  5. Swanee River

  6. Top Ten Twist

The Beatles' First  was originally released in Germany in April 1964, which makes more sense than any other release, as if to just give Beatles fans a home for those harder to get earlier recordings. And seeing how those original Sheridan recordings were only released two years earlier (officially titled, My Bonnie, it was fitting to reissue this set in 1964. And to some, for historical reasons, this can be considered technically an official Beatles release (if mostly for the fans and completists).

 

This 1962 Polydor release does not contain the Lennon vocal, "Ain't She Sweet" or the Beatles composition, "Cry For A Shadow" (which was actually written by George Harrison and John Lennon and is the first commonly known song ever written by George).

All of the songs were recorded in Hamburg, Germany in 1962 after establishing a relationship with Sheridan and German Polydor agent, Bert Kaempfert. The songs listed above are the result of those relationships. Then you mix further Beat Brothers' recording sessions in Germany and you have The Beatles' First.

Many of the releases were titled in varying ways, sometimes as Early Tapes, Ain't She Sweet (seeing how John sang lead on that track), In The Beginning and so on. But the most commonly known is this Polydor album, In The Beginning and, to some, The Beatles' First.

 

Some are commonly known bootlegs and some on small independent record labels, but Polydor were the key holder of these recordings.

 

Once The Beat Brothers were done with these sessions, they would then record demos and tracks that would go on to produce more compilations galore - including the infamous Decca Audition tapes.

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