Thursday, November 19, 2009

Virtual Beatlegmania

So let's say you have a few hundred old vinyl boots digitized for the purpose of writing some books. But once that's done, what do you do with all the needle-drops? Given that 99.9% of the material is available in far superior quality from tape sources, when will you ever pull them out to listen again?

Rather than let the recordings rot unloved on a shelf, I've decided to share them with the world via this blog. To simulate the original vinyl listening experience, no pops and clicks have been removed; no track markers have been inserted to separate songs. In other words, all I could be bothered to do was upload one file per LP side, exactly as the needle hit the grooves 15-35 years later.

If you have the Beatlegmania books, you can follow along with my notes as you listen. The files are lossless (FLAC from .aiff) and will remain up for as long as possible. I'll try to upload a few titles each week - if you have a request, drop me a line at and I'll try to accommodate it. And please leave comments here on each of the albums! What memories does it bring back? What surprised you as you listened?

We begin with a second-generation TMOQ title from 1974, The E.M.I. Outakes - a melange of commercial alternate mixes, pirated interviews, and most of the Around The Beatles soundtrack.

1 comment:

  1. Just found this blog and felt inspired to comment. Although I had seen a couple of Beatlegs in small record stores, the first one I purchased was from the back of a Beatles magazine special that came out in 1973 or 1974. It was advertised as the Beatles in concert and what arrived was a two record set in a plain white cardboard sleeve with a photo of the Beatles poorly stuck on; no track information at all, but the labels (named "Fan Buys") listed all of the tracks, and there was band separation-not that common on the early bootlegs. What it turned out to be was one disc that was the complete mono 1964 Hollywood Bowl concert and a second disc that was a real mix: all of the June 30, 1966 Budokan show except Nowhere Man, a couple of the Polydor tracks, and a couple Ed Sullivan show performances. But the real intrigue came in the catalog from a company called "Together" that came with it, listing many of the Beatlegs you have uploaded so far (and many more by multiple artists) as well as Super 8 film clips, posters, etc. I placed an order that never showed up, but once my mom sent a threatening letter I did get a shipment with a couple substitutions from my original order. With hindsight this is all a bit easier to understand, but that was my introduction to the wonderful world of Beatlegs.