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Recorded: 1962-1970
Released: April 2, 1973 R, B,
November 14, 2000 1


Notes:
R The Beatles 1962-1966 (aka “The Red Album”)

B The Beatles 1967-1970 (aka “The Blue Album”)

1 The Beatles 1


Rating: 4.527 (average of 15 ratings) R


Rating: 4.665 (average of 15 ratings) B


Rating: 4.509 (average of 11 ratings) 1


Genre: pop/classic rock


Quotable: --


Album Tracks, Disc 1 R

  1. Love Me Do 1
  2. Please Please Me
  3. From Me to You 1
  4. She Loves You 1
  5. I Want to Hold Your Hand 1
  6. All My Loving
  7. Can’t Buy Me Love 1
  8. A Hard Day’s Night 1
  9. And I Love Her
  10. Eight Days a Week 1
  11. I Feel Fine 1
  12. Ticket to Ride 1
  13. Yesterday 1


Album Tracks, Disc 2 R

  1. Help! 1
  2. You’ve Got to Hide Your Love Away
  3. We Can Work It Out 1
  4. Day Tripper 1
  5. Drive My Car
  6. Norwegian Wood (This Bird Has Flown)
  7. Nowhere Man
  8. Michelle
  9. In My Life
  10. Girl
  11. Paperback Writer 1
  12. Eleanor Rigby 1
  13. Yellow Submarine 1


Album Tracks, Disc 1 B

  1. Strawberry Fields Forever
  2. Penny Lane 1
  3. Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band
  4. With a Little Help from My Friends
  5. Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds
  6. A Day in the Life
  7. All You Need Is Love 1
  8. I Am the Walrus
  9. Hello Goodbye 1
  10. The Fool on the Hill
  11. Magical Mystery Tour
  12. Lady Madonna 1
  13. Hey Jude 1
  14. Revolution


Album Tracks, Disc 2 B

  1. Back in the U.S.S.R.
  2. While My Guitar Gently Weeps
  3. Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da
  4. Get Back 1
  5. Don’t Let Me Down
  6. The Ballad of John and Yoko 1
  7. Old Brown Shoe
  8. Here Comes the Sun
  9. Come Together 1
  10. Something 1
  11. Octopus’s Garden
  12. Let It Be 1
  13. Across the Universe
  14. The Long and Winding Road 1

1 These songs appeared on the single-disc compilation, 1.


Sales:

sales in U.S. only 7.5 million R, 8 million B, 10 million 1
sales in U.K. only - estimated 600,000 R, 600,000 B, 2.69 million 1
sales in all of Europe as determined by IFPI – click here to go to their site. 8 million 1
sales worldwide - estimated 24 million R, 23.5 million B, 31 million 1


Peak:

peak on U.S. Billboard album chart 3 R, 1 1 wk – B, 1 8 wks – 1
peak on U.K. album chart 3 R, 2 B, 1 9 wks – 1


Singles:

  • Please Please Me (9/62) #3 US, #2 UK
  • Love Me Do (10/5/62) #1 US, #17 UK
  • From Me to You (4/18/63) #41 US, #1 UK
  • She Loves You (8/29/63) #1 US, #1 UK
  • I Want to Hold Your Hand (11/29/63) #1 US, #1 UK. 4x platinum single.
  • Can’t Buy Me Love (3/26/64) #1 US, #1 UK. 3x platinum single.
  • All My Loving (3/28/64) #45 US
  • A Hard Day’s Night (7/16/64) #1 US, #1 UK. Gold single.
  • And I Love Her (7/20/64) #12 US
  • I Feel Fine (12/3/64) #1 US, #1 UK. Gold single.
  • Eight Days a Week (2/15/65) #1 US. Gold single.
  • Ticket to Ride (4/15/65) #1 US, #1 UK
  • Help! (7/29/65) #1 US, #1 UK. Gold single.
  • Yesterday (9/25/65) #1 US, #8 UK. Gold single.
  • We Can Work It Out (12/9/65) #1 US, #1 UK. Gold single.
  • Day Tripper (12/9/65) #5 US, #1 UK. B-side of “We Can Work It Out”
  • Nowhere Man (3/5/66) #3 US. Gold single.
  • Paperback Writer (6/11/66) #1 US, #1 UK. Gold single.
  • Yellow Submarine (8/11/66) #2 US, #1 UK. Gold single.
  • Eleanor Rigby (8/11/66) #11 US, #1 UK. B-side of “Yellow Submarine”
  • Penny Lane (2/23/67) #1 US, #2 UK. Gold single.
  • Strawberry Fields Forever (2/23/67) #8 US, #2 UK. B-side of “Penny Lane”
  • All You Need Is Love (7/12/67) #1 US, #1 UK, Gold single.
  • Hello Goodbye (11/29/67) #1 US, #1 UK. Gold single.
  • I Am the Walrus (11/29/67) #56 US
  • Magical Mystery Tour (12/13/67) #2 UK (EP)
  • Lady Madonna (3/20/68) #4 US, #1 UK. Platinum single.
  • Hey Jude (9/4/68) #1 US, #1 UK, #41 AR. 4x platinum single.
  • Revolution (9/4/68) #12 US. B-side of “Hey Jude”
  • Get Back (4/23/69) #1 US, #1 UK. 2x platinum single.
  • Don’t Let Me Down (5/10/69) #35 US. B-side of “Get Back”
  • The Ballad of John and Yoko (6/4/69) #8 US, #1 UK. Gold single.
  • Come Together (10/18/69) #1 US, #4 UK, #25 AR. 2x platinum single.
  • Something (10/18/69) #3 US, #4 UK, #17 AC. B-side of “Come Together”
  • Let It Be (3/14/70) #1 US, #2 UK, #1 AC. 2x platinum single.
  • The Long and Winding Road (5/23/70) #1 US, #2 AC. Platinum single.
  • Back in the U.S.S.R. (7/10/76) #19 UK
  • Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da (11/20/76) #49 US, #39 AC
  • Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band/ With a Little Help from My Friends (9/16/78) #71 US, #63 UK

Check out the DMDB Beatles’ singles page for a complete singles discography.


Awards:

Rated one of the top 1000 albums of all time by Dave’s Music Database. Click to learn more. Billboard Magazine’s Album of the Year (Beatles ‘1’ One of the Top 100 All-Time World’s Best-Selling Albums (all 3 collections) The World’s Best Selling Album of the Year (Beatles ‘1’). Click to go to awards page.


1962-1966 (aka “The Red Album”)/
1967-1970
(aka “The Blue Album”)/
The Beatles “1”

The Beatles
Review:
“Assembling a compilation of the Beatles is a difficult task, not only because they had an enormous number of hits, but also because singles didn’t tell the full story; many of their album tracks were as important as the singles, if not more so” (Erlewine, R). Of course, there’s also the matter that all of the Beatles individual albums are essential enough that once you’ve gathered them up, is there any need for a compilation?

Well, yes. Compilations are targeted at the more casual fan. Of course, when the Beatles released not one, but two double-album compilations on the same day in 1973, it was hard to guess who it was for. A four-album greatest hits is a bit hefty for a casual fan. However, at that time, many of these songs had not been released on any Beatles’ albums, so the two sets were pretty near must haves.

“The double-album 1962-1966, commonly called The Red Album, does…surprisingly well [at] hitting most of the group’s major early hits and adding important album tracks like You’ve Got to Hide Your Love Away, Drive My Car, Norwegian Wood, and In My Life. Naturally, there are many great songs missing from the 26-track 1962-1966, and perhaps it would have made more sense to include the Revolver cuts on its companion volume, 1967-1970, yet The Red Album captures the essence of the Beatles' pre-Sgt. Pepper records” (Erlewine, R).

“Picking up where 1962-1966 left off, the double-album compilation 1967-1970, commonly called The Blue Album, covers the Beatles’ later records, from Sgt. Pepper through Let It Be. Like The Red Album, The Blue Album contains a mixture of hits, including singles like Lady Madonna, Hey Jude, and Revolution that were never included on an LP, plus important album tracks like Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds, A Day in the Life, While My Guitar Gently Weeps, and Come Together. Like its predecessor, 1967-1970 misses several great songs, but the compilation nevertheless does capture the essence of the Beatles’ later recordings” (Erlewine, B).

1962-1966 and 1967-1970 effectively serve as the Beatles’ box set, albeit focusing on the big hits and single-only releases and not rarities or alternate recordings (that would come on the three-volume, six-disc Anthology series). However, “there was [still] a gap in the Beatles’ catalog…all the big hits weren’t on one tidy, single-disc compilation. It’s not the kind of gap you’d necessarily notice – it’s kind of like realizing you don’t have a pair of navy blue dress socks – but it was a gap all the same, so the group released The Beatles 1 late in 2000, coinciding with the publication of their official autobiography, the puzzlingly titled Anthology” (Erlewine, 1).

“The idea behind this compilation is to have all the number one singles the Beatles had, either in the U.K. or U.S., on one disc, and that's pretty much what this generous 27-track collection is” (Erlewine, 1). Of course, one can’t help but notice that 27 cuts makes for exactly half of the output on the 1962-1966 and 1967-1970 compilations – and yet those collections were spread out over a total of four discs.

“It’s easy, nay, necessary, to quibble with a couple of the judgment calls” (Erlewine, 1) not only in how the Beatles compilations were packaged, but what songs made it and what didn’t. “Please Please Me should be here…and it’s unforgivable to bypass Strawberry Fields Forever” (Erlewine, 1). Besides, there’s been a long standing debate about whether or not “Please Please Me” may have, in fact, deserved #1 status in the U.K. and “Strawberry Fields Forever” was the B-side of a #1 hit (Penny Lane) and this collection included other B-sides of #1 hits (Something and Eleanor Rigby) that technically were B-sides and didn’t achieve #1 status on their own. Still, “there’s still no question that this is all great music” (Erlewine, 1).

After all, “there is a bit of a rush hearing all these dazzling songs follow one after another. If there’s any complaint, it’s that even if it’s nice to have something like this, it’s not really essential. There’s really no reason for anyone who owns all the records to get this too – if you’ve lived happily without the red or blue albums, you’ll live without this. But, if you give this to any six or seven year old, they’ll be a pop fan, even fanatic, for life. And that’s reason enough for it to exist” (Erlewine, 1).


Review Source(s):


Related DMDB Links:

The Beatles’ DMDB page


Last updated March 27, 2008.