Beatles For Sale
Beatles For Sale was released on 4th December, 1964 - just 21 weeks after A Hard Day's Night. It was The Beatles’ fourth album release in less than two years.
The album had been recorded in seven days, scattered between August and October, when the band’s schedule was crammed with stage performances in the UK, Canada and the US, as well as radio and television work. Given the lack of time, it was not surprising that the group reverted to the 1963 formula of eight original songs and six covers.
No single was released in the UK from Beatles For Sale - the non-album tracks "I Feel Fine" and "She's A Woman" performed that role - however, that coupling was followed-up in the US by "Eight Day's A Week" (b/w " I Don't Want To Spoil The Party") which became their 7th #1 in March 1965.
The cover portraits - again taken by Robert Freeman - adorned an unusual gate-fold package with the pocket (containing the disc) only revealed once the album sleeve was opened. There was a new author for the cover notes, too - Derek Taylor. Check out the prophetic nature of his notes penned in the autumn of 1964!
The album hit the UK number one spot and retained that position for eleven of the 46 weeks that it spent in the Top Twenty.
Again, Beatles For Sale did not surface as a regular album in the US until 1987. In its place was "Beatles '65" which featured eight songs from Beatles For Sale, plus the A and B-side of 'I Feel Fine' and 'I'll Be Back' from the UK 's 'A Hard Day's Night' album. This album enjoyed a nine week run at the top of the US charts beginning in January, 1965. The remaining tracks from Beatles For Sale appeared on a later Capitol release 'Beatles VI' released in June, 1965. This too made the #1 position, which it held for six weeks.
Photo session for the "Beatles For Sale" album cover
"I used to go out to John's house in Weybridge to write songs and at that particular time I had been busted for speeding, so I had to have a driver to take me out there and we were chatting on the way and I remember saying to the guy, well how you been, you know, you been busy? And he said, 'Oh yeah mate, I've been working eight days a week.' And I went into John's house and said, 'Right, I've got the title Eight Days A Week' and we wrote it there and then."
Paul takes a break during a recording session for the album "Beatles For Sale"
"That is a rather nice cover that is. Robert Freeman - nice photos. We showed up in Hyde Park near the Albert Memorial and he was quite impressed by George's hair then - a marvellous little turnip top he'd managed to create."
George during a recording session for the album "Beatles For Sale"
"In those days we didn't release a single off an album or rather when we came to put an album together we did not include the single in it. I think if I have a favourite on the album it is Paul's song of I'll Follow the Sun."
Ringo behind drum kit during a recording session for "Beatles For Sale"
John during a recording session for the album "Beatles For Sale"
NME review Beatles For Sale
Just three weeks from today, the new Beatles album will be available in your local record store - in fact, it will be a case of 'Beatles For Sale' on Dec 4. It's rip-roaring, infectious stuff, with the accent on beat throughout.
There are 14 tracks, including eight new Lennon-McCartney compositions. Numbers by Chuck Berry, Carl Perkins, Buddy Holly and the Lieber-Stoller team complete the composing. These non-Beatles tracks are included for a purpose, they reflect the early years of the group because they were mostly numbers that raised screams at the Cavern club in Liverpool. Nowadays, the Beatles don't get much chance to play them. The LP is overflowing with absorbing and distinctive Beatle trademarks.
George Martin & Paul, during a recording session for the album "Beatles For Sale"
"It was only after the first year that they started getting really interested in studio techniques. They always wanted to get the thing right so it wasn't a one-take operation, they would listen to it and they'd two or three takes until they got it pretty well right."
"Musically we were learning a lot. You know, this is where we learned a lot of the music putting together - some of the arrangements and things, you know. We were quite quick in the studio when you think about it - two songs in three hours."
Paul & John during a recording session for the album "Beatles For Sale"
"The rehearsal would go on in the studio because from very early on a lot of the songs weren't finished, the ideas were there for the songs or the first verse or a chorus but it, it could be changed by the writers as we were doing it."