Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Covet Corner: The Beatles Collection

Welcome to the latest blog feature in my arsenal of blog features, Covet Corner.

This is currently planned as a 5-part series that will focus on my various collectibles that would make any collector green with envy.

The first installment of Covet Corner will begin with an obvious thing to covet...and that is my Beatles collection on vinyl.

I don't have the largest or most respectable Beatles collection on vinyl in the world, but I have to say that I am very happy with the albums I do have. I've got audiophiles to the left of me telling me that I need to get the European pressings because they sound better, and I have assholes to the right of me who simply don't care. So here I am in the middle, enjoying the hell out of all these albums.

Revolver is definitely a favorite album of mine. Not only does it feature my favorite Beatles song ever (Eleanor Rigby), but it was released at that special time in Beatles history when they were turning their backs on the "she loves you yah yah yah" crap and were doing a lot of drugs. I've always liked the artwork as well. I'd love to have a "Revolver" poster on the wall in my Matt-Cave.

The crowning achievement of my Beatles collection has got to be my copy of "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band." Its not a rare album, but its one that sounds great on vinyl. I purchased my copy for $15, which might sound like a lot but it was actually a good deal. Most shops won't sell ANY Beatles record for less than $25. Only reason I got mine for $15 is because the shop owner is partial to the imports rather than domestic printings. Hell, I don't care. I just wanted some Sgt. Pepper on vinyl, and I got it!

Magical Mystery Tour...the very first Beatles vinyl I ever owned, passed down to me by my dear mother. Funny story about this album...when I got my sister interested in vinyl records, I made plans to coerce our father into buying her a nice record player for her birthday. In the meantime, I bought her some Beatles records off eBay. One of the records I got her was "Magical Mystery Tour." This copy was actually a better one than what I had. This one came with a nice booklet and had that authentic vintage smell, whereas the one my mother gave me was a later pressing and didn't come with the booklet. I was SO tempted to keep the booklet version for myself and just give my sister my old one. Alas, I couldn't part with something that my mother had given me, so my sister got the "better" version. I also got her the Sgt. Pepper album too. It only took me 2 years to find a copy of it for myself. :)

Abbey Road was a real steal when i got it about 2 years ago. My woman and I were perusing a record store in Daytona Beach and I came across "Abbey Road." It was in perfect condition, and only $8. I didn't care that it wasn't an original pressing. It was still Beatles, and Beatles on vinyl is worthy. So I bought it, and I still listen to it often. End of story.

The Red & Blue albums are 'greatest hits' collections. They're not really necessary to own, but nice to have if you can find them for a decent price. I think I paid $10 each for them from the same purchase that got my sister her first Beatles albums. Screw you sis, these are mine.

I discussed the Rarities album not too long ago in one of my Vinyl Friday! segments, so I won't talk to much about it again here. Just know that its a pretty rare album, and features a lot of alternate takes of Beatles songs, and even has a few that I was never familiar with previously. Its a damn fine album, I highly recommend it if you can ever find a copy on CD or vinyl.

So there you have it, my Beatles collection on vinyl. Oh, how much you must covet it!!

But wait, we're not done!!! Not by a long-shot!
After all, what Beatles vinyl collection is complete without any of the post-Beatles solo material?

You'll notice that I have quite a few John Lennon albums. Obviously he's my favorite Beatles member (as long as you can burn the stain of Yoko out of your memory).  But lets start with the first record shown, George Harrison's "All Things Must Pass."

I'm actually kind of pissed that I bought this album. I bought it for $30, but it didn't come with the original poster. So of course, exactly one week later at a different shop, I see "All Things Must Pass" for $25 with the poster included. D'OH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
This is one of my favorite post-Beatles albums, and its really a shame that George Harrison's other solo albums didn't match the majesty that he recorded here. I used to have a couple other Harrison records ("Thirty-Three & A Third" and "Extra Texture"), but they were really whiny and not that interesting so I sold them off so I could get better records. Really, "All Things Must Pass" is the only George Harrison album you need. Its his best, and is one of the greatest rock albums ever recorded. Seriously, this could have been the best Beatles album ever, if only they could keep it together.

The 5 John Lennon albums I have are all great, and in my opinion are the only ones you need. Everything else he did has the Yoko Stain all over it, so if you can just stick to Plastic Ono Band (a great album and is devoid of Yoko, despite the album title), Imagine, Mind Games, Walls & Bridges and his Rock n' Roll covers album...then you're all set for Lennon stuff.

Plastic Ono Band is a bit heavier than most other Lennon albums, if you ignore all the noise stuff he did with that wife of his. This is a very personal record, and there is so much emotion pressed into the grooves that at times it seems like you're reading Lennon's diary. This is by far my favorite Lennon solo album.

Imagine is a classic, of course. If you don't know this album then shame on you. I won't say much about it here other than I am afraid to actually play my copy of it. It's an original condition...poster and post-card god, its practically the Holy Grail of my record collection. May your dirty greasy hands never touch it!!

I HATE Yoko, but I LOVE this song.

Mind Games is a very somber album, and a lot of it is pretty forgettable. The title track is the best song on the album, and even that one kind of meanders on for a bit too long. Luckily this was an album I got for less than $5, so I regret nothing. It doesn't get a lot of listens, but it does see some play-time every now and again.

Walls & Bridges is another weird album by Lennon. It was recorded when he was (thankfully) separated from Yoko Ono. Its a very poppy and accessible album, however it only had one single off it. "Whatever Gets You Through the Night" was recorded with Elton John and is easily one of the better songs on the album.

Rock N' Roll is simply a covers album by John Lennon, who performs a lot of his favorite rock songs from the 1950's. Lennon does a good job at making the songs sound his own. I'm sure you've heard his version of "Stand By Me," which was the single off this album. There's a lot of other great ones he covered too, such as this Chuck Berry jam:

And FINALLY...we get to Paul McCartney. The "I really wish I had a prenup agreement with that Heather Mills bitch" guy. Seriously, this guy lost half his fortune to a one-legged gold-digger. That's gotta hurt.

Good thing I have "Ram" and the Wings "Greatest Hits" albums to round out the collection. True, my McCartney collection is lacking, but seriously...the Wings album i have has all my favorite post-Beatles McCartney songs on it anyway, so I don't really need more. However, if I find some for cheap they will most likely be added to the collection.

So there you have it folks, I'm finally done talking about the things I have that I know you want! At least for this week. :)

Join me next week here on Covet Corner, where I will be sharing my Black Sabbath and Ozzy Osbourne collection with you.

Until then, stay jealous!!


  1. Good stuff, buddy. If you ever see a copy of Harrison's 1988 "Cloud 9" album you should pick that up, I hear it was pretty decent (and produced by Jeff Lynne from ELO).

    I have a copy of Lennon's "Live Peace in Toronto" that you may covet, with the first Plastic Ono Band line-up. Yeah, it has Yoko's caterwauling but it also features Clapton and Alan White backing him up. Fair trade.

  2. Yeah dude, Live Peace in Toronto sounds pretty awesome. Do you have the "Toot and a Snore" live bootleg at all? I've never seen it on vinyl, but I have a torrented version of it. It'

    I've never seen Cloud 9 around, I'll keep an eye out. I see McCartney II a lot...I might pick that up soon.