Boomers Meet Beatles

Boomers Meet Beatles

Boomers Meet Beatles!

January 20, 1964

Boomers Meet Beatles

Boomers Meet Beatles

Though Meet the Beatles! is actually the second Beatles album released in the United States, for many American Boomers, it is the first Beatle album.

It may even have been the first album a Boomer ever bought.

Capital Records released the album on January 20, 1964 in the middle of The Singing Nun album’s two month run at the top of Billboard.

Meet the Beatles!  hit #1 on February 15 and stayed there until May 2 when The Beatles Second Album took over the top spot.

Vee Jay Records had released Introducing The Beatles on January 10, but Capital’s superior marketing made it seem like Meet the Beatles! was the only Beatle album out there.

Boomers Meet Beatles

Robert Freeman

Robert Freeman did the famous (and often imitated) cover, It had already been used in the United Kingdom for With the Beatles (the Beatles second UK-released album). A blue tint was added for the US release.

Freeman recalled that, “They had to fit in the square format of the cover, so rather than have them all in a line, I put Ringo in the bottom right corner, since he was the last to join the group. He was also the shortest.”

Paul McCartney said, “He arranged us in a hotel corridor: it was very un-studio-like. The corridor was very dark, and there was a window at the end, and by using this heavy source of natural light coming from the right, he got that very moody picture which most people think he must have worked at forever and ever. But it was only an hour. He sat down, took a couple of rolls, and that was it.” (both quotes from the McCartney dot com site)

Freeman would also do the covers for Beatles For Sale, Help, and Rubber Soul.

Boomers Meet Beatles

Setting down the needle

Setting the “needle” on side 1 cut brings a flood of memories. We know the next song before it starts.

Boomers Meet the Beatles

Meet the Beatles!

Side 1

  1. I Want to Hold Your Hand
  2. I Saw Her Standing There
  3. This Boy
  4. It Won’t Be Long
  5. All I’ve Got to Do
  6. All My Loving
Side 2

  1. Don’t Bother Me
  2. Little Child
  3. Till There Was You
  4. Hold Me Tight
  5. I Wanna Be Your Man
  6. Not a Second Time

The typical American fan did not realize it, but this “album” was not 12 songs the Beatles had recorded as an album. Meet the Beatles! took their second British record, With the Beatles, dropped five covers and added three tracks, including the singles “I Want to Hold Your Hand” and “I Saw Her Standing There.”

And it only had 12 songs, unlike the usual 14 on UK releases. (It would not be until Sgt Pepper in 1967 that the world would get the same Beatle album everywhere.)

Rolling Stone Magazine rates the Meet the Beatles! at #53 of the greatest rock albums of all time.

Where do you rank it?

Boomers Meet Beatles
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