Some years ago, say about 35 or so, I was given a beautiful box set of eight vinyl albums.
Of course, these weren’t just any eight albums, these were Beatles albums (I know, shocker right?!!).
This truly lovely Japanese box set is called “The Beatles Box: From Liverpool” and features selections from throughout the group’s entire career (barring of course “Free as a Bird” and “Real Love” from the mid ’90s) and also includes a lot of rare mixes as well.
Now, for one, I’m ALL ABOUT box sets. I love them. Whether they’re vinyl, CD what have you, I just love them.
And this set, in typical Japanese style, is well made with thin but nicely made unique covers for each disc plus a groovy booklet and sturdy box complete with red OBI slip on the outside (the Japanese love these paper OBI strips).
This particular box set sounds great too with super quiet vinyl with mostly stereo mixes with a few rare mixes thrown in as well; makes my heart pitter-patter just thinking about it.
Originally released in the UK in 1980 by World Records, a mail order division of The Beatles record label EMI, this set is a great way of getting a fair amount of The Beatles entire recorded output in one spot in outstanding quality – all in its analog glory.
Now, how my mother ended up buying me this Japanese version of the set as a gift I don’t quite remember. It might have been sitting at our local Musicland store at the mall or maybe she saw it in one of my mail order catalogs but nonetheless I was thrilled to get it and still cherish it to this day.
Some of my favorite oddball mixes included in this set are: “All My Loving” (with “hi-hat” intro), “I’m Only Sleeping” (stereo with a different guitar solo from the U.S. eight-track of Yesterday and Today), “I Feel Fine” (true stereo version that begins with whispering and coughing) and “I Am The Walrus” (composite version from the U.S. Rarities Lp).
I’m in the process of making a CD set of vinyl drops (CDRs) from this box set as I really enjoy hearing this collection and want to keep it in digital form. It just shines when you play it back through a nice CD player and truly sounds better than most of the officially released Beatles CDs.
Because the set contains so much music it’s a bit lower in volume at times but sounds great and blossoms when you play it a bid louder than normal.
Check out some photos above of this groovy Japanese version of one of the best Beatles collections ever released on vinyl. Too bad it never made it to the CD age but then again if it did then Apple (The Beatles company) probably would have substituted the rare mixes defeating the fun factor of this set.
It’s well worth trying to track down this collection all you Beatles vinyl lovers out there though the original UK set may be a bit cheaper to find these days than the Japanese import set. Luckily the contents are the same whether you find the UK or Japanese version.
Until next time, be well and Beatle on!!!