The Beatles - 1971 Lost Album, Part One
If the Beatles created one final album in 1971 what songs might be included?
The following blog post is the first of three as a critique of Vinyl Rewind’s “The Lost Beatles Album 1971” YouTube video. I HIGHLY recommend checking out Eric (the Vinyl Geek) Callero’s in-depth video BEFORE reading my blog series. These writings are meant as a fun, respectful and geeky historical analysis of and response to the possibility of a 1971 Beatles album.
*Seven Jesse’s were tickled during the writing of this post.
How many out there experienced a quarantine night where your desire to take out the trash is low enough you decide to scour YouTube for “one more video?” That’s where I was one night in May. It just didn’t feel right to take out the stinky trash. So, I surfed through video after video after video…and I really wasn’t impressed.
Then a Beatles thumbnail appeared within my peripheral; arrogance made me view it passingly. “The Lost Beatles Album of 1971 - Vinyl Rewind” flashed upon my glance.
I go back to the thumbnail. “The Lost Beatles Album of 1971 - Vinyl Rewind.”
Okay. Now, I’m intrigued!
Being a bit of an amateur Beatles Historian, and a sucker for hyperbolic headlines, I was destined to click on this clip.
No, I have watched many of Eric Callero’s vinyl album reviews for the last year. I enjoy his takes on music, including his episodes pairing certain cocktails to particular albums; here is my favorite combo he shared with the world. Absolutely delicious, and what an album to pair!
In this video, he dives into the “potential” for a 1971 Beatles’ album compiled of various songs from the Beatles’ solo career. Yes, it is not a true “lost Beatles album;” I, and several YouTube commenters, noticed. Clever marketing, Eric!
Throughout my Beatles research, I have come across these types of theories and lists many times. A lot of them are loosely put together, but Eric put forth a well thought out criteria for what songs from the fab four’s solo projects could make this lost Beatles “album” of 1971.
His first point is focusing on songs written in both 1970 and 1971. Most people focus on just the first set of solo albums released in 1970 (including me). But he raises a good point: with Let It Be’s release in 1970, the likely projection of those 1970’s songs could have ended up on a Beatles’ album in 1971. This opens up for more inventive songs to include especially those done by the two top songwriters. Including John’s Imagine.
I do want to say the likelihood of any of these 1971 songs appearing on a 1971 Beatles album (particularly anything created after April 1971) are slim. Two reasons: one, the likely release of this album would have been May/June in 1971 as the trajectory predicts. Two, we have to consider most of the songs on Ram and Imagine were jabs at Paul and John concerning their feud. I highly doubt those make the Beatles album.
However, there are several songs John and Paul wrote with the Beatles which show in their solo work, including these albums. So reaching this far out makes a lot of sense. Also, the probability factor of seeing these songs on a 1971 Beatles album are raised considerably.
Eric makes an excellent point about what type of album this should be: single versus double. We all know we can load up a double album with the Beatles’ solo work and it’ll be quality. However, Eric states he wants a single vinyl album.
This is a fun practice and good guidelines to follow as he gets to play producer. He has to watch the track lengths as a single side of vinyl can usually play roughly 23 minutes of music. This is constraining as you will have to leave some songs (including your favorites!) on the cutting floor. Geeks like me dig this shit!
Now that we have Eric’s parameters laid-out, let’s look at his results:
A1: What is Life? (4:22)
A2: Monkberry Moon Delight (5:21)
A3: Instant Karma! (3:18)
A4: Not Guilty (3:22)
A5: Maybe I’m Amazed (3:53)
B1: It Don’t Come Easy (3:00)
B2: Hold On (1:52)
B3: Dear Boy (2:12)
B4: Imagine (3:01)
B5: Another Day (3:41)
B6: Child of Nature (2:37)
B7: My Sweet Lord (4:38)
In Part Two, I will spend time dissecting his selections/album, and give my opinion and rating of the album.
Then, be sure to check out Part Three with my rendition of a 1971 Beatles album. In that article, I will lay out my sequencing of songs, dissect my choices, and lay out the reasoning for my selections with historic references and personal biases. I swear this exercise is not sheer pandemic boredom; this is my hobby!
Please be sure to check out Eric’s channel! If there is one thing the Beatles taught us is that fun is contagious. And Eric has a lot of fun in his videos.
“The Beatles saved the world from boredom.” ~ George Harrison