Beatles debut album released 50 years ago

It was 50 years ago today….a Beatles album came out in the U.K. That would be the Fab Four’s debut album, “Please Please Me,” released March 22, 1963.

To mark the occasion, the Beatles official website is posting the five-minute making-of “Please Please Me” documentary, which also can be seen here:

The album consists of several John Lennon-Paul McCartney songs including the title track, “I Saw Her Standing There,” “Love Me Do” and “Do You Want to Know a Secret” along with Beatles versions of several American R&B; and pop hits they loved such as “Anna (Go To Him),” “Chains,” “A Taste of Honey” and “Twist and Shout.”


The home page also includes this 1963 press clipping from NME about the album’s release: “Things are beginning to move for the Beatles, the r-and-b styled British group. The disc ‘Please Please Me’ follows closely on the heels of their first hit ‘Love Me Do’ written by group members John Lennon and Paul McCartney. It looks like a bright future for the Beatles, but knowing them I don’t think they’ll let it go to their heads.”

And producer George Martin is quoted remembering, “ ‘Please Please Me’ was done in a day - we started at 10 o’clock in the morning, finished at 11 at night, and that was the record made.” That anecdote was famously parodied in the Eric Idle-Gary Weis Rutles mockumentary “All You Need Is Cash,” in which a narrator noted that, “Their debut album was recorded in 20 minutes; the second took even longer.”

In addition, Amazon’s UK store has turned the clock back to 1963 on a page created for the anniversary, making it look like what a website in 1963 would have included had the Internet existed half a century ago.

Along with a sale on the “Please Please Me” album, marked down from £11.99 ($18) to £8.99 ($13.50) for March 22 only, highlights other albums and singles that were on the charts at the time, including the Beach Boys’ “Surfin’ USA”; Charles Mingus’ “The Black Saint and the Sinner Lady”; the Four Seasons’ “Sherry” albums; Bobby Vee’s “The Night Has a Thousand Eyes”; and Cliff Richard & the Shadows’ “Summer Holiday” singles priced at 10p (15 cents) apiece.

It also has a bold black box touting Bob Dylan as “One to Watch…From across the pond, the up and coming folk singer releases his second album ‘The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan’ later this year. Order it here.”


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Follow Randy Lewis on Twitter: @RandyLewis2


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