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The Beatles – On Our Way Home (Golden Eggs – Eggs 035)

The Beatles, “On Our Way Home” (Golden Eggs – Egg 35)

Tracklist – ‘It’s The Beatles’, (2018 Source), Liverpool, Empire Theatre, Dec 7, 1963 – From Me To You / I Saw Her Standing There / Intro / All My Loving / Intro / Roll Over Beethoven / Intro / Boys / Intro / Til There Was You / She Loves You / Intro / This Boy / I Want To Hold Your Hand / Intro / Money / Twist And Shout / From Me To You (Instrumental)
‘It’s The Beatles’, (2014 Source), Liverpool, Empire Theatre, Dec 7, 1963 – From Me To You / I Saw Her Standing There / Intro / All My Loving / Intro / Roll Over Beethoven / Intro / Boys / Intro / Til There Was You / She Loves You / Intro / This Boy / I Want To Hold Your Hand / Intro / Money / Twist And Shout / From Me To You (Instrumental)
ABC Cinema, Manchester, Nov 20, 1963 – Source 1 – She Loves You / Twist And Shout / From Me To You (Instrumental) – Source 2 – She Loves You / Twist And Shout
Elstree Studio Centre, Borehamwood, ‘Morecambe And Wise Show’, Dec 2, 1963 – Credits / This Boy / All My Loving / I Want To Hold Your Hand / ‘Hello Bongo’ / Moonlight Bay / Closing
Home Demo, C, Mid 1963 – What Goes On (Partial From Acetate)

Released by the Golden Eggs label, this 2018 upgrade to The Beatles appearance at their own headlining show in Liverpool was another of those brilliant little secrets that had been stored since the time of it’s production and then only fully realised only 50+ years later. There were, as was to be expected, many releases of this show – mixing the audio, adding it to the video, adding other peripherals, sometimes it was just the show itself (Which makes for a very short CD – like an early 90’s Swingin’ Pig production), however, The Eggs label have managed to find enough work to fill out the disk that it doesn’t seem like overkill, repetition or money-raking.

Thankfully, the liner notes have done most of my work for me here and so all I have to do is re-write “Billy Martin’s” notes and add my comments; I won’t list them all here as its (a) time consuming for both of us, (b) unhelpful when you buy the set and have these to look forward to. So, in italics;

“In 1963, Fabs fans were in for a televisual treat as, through a static flash of promotional excellence, the band seemed to feature on the telly more than the news .. One of the biggest calendar dates was for their appearance back on home turf, recorded at the Empire Theatre in Liverpool December 7, 1963. A special afternoon show held for 2,500 of the Beatles ‘Northern Area Fan Club’, it was filmed in it’s entirety by the BBC with a broadcast that very same evening during a specially syndicated program titled, ‘It’s The Beatles’.The show was beset by a few problems however, mainly due to time being tight for rehearsals, the band and their management were quite open with their complaints about the broadcast suggesting that the camera didn’t necessarily cast it’s gaze on each of the band equally and there were also problems of an audio kind during “Boys” when Ringo’s vocals couldn’t be heard. The mix for the show being way off too.”

“With foresight and mismanaged-planning, the BBC had one more bright idea, presumably seeing as the show had been given a drubbing, the tape was handed down to their editing department for splicing practice, essentially rendering the video useless and pretty much unusable (Baring four of the songs which miraculously survived!) – The audio for the show survived thanks to forward thinking Beatles fans and tech enthusiasts who variously pointed their new tape machines at the box to capture this show for prosperity. Some of these recordings fared a little better than other’s – when the show was first bootlegged on the classic vinyl LPs, “Youngblood” and a short while later (uncropped) as “December 63”, it was accompanied by the tapers family eating their dinner in the background.”

“In the mid-2000’s, a newer cleaner version appeared on youtube which eventually appeared on the Purple Chick internet release, ‘Live Collection Vol. 2’, a further upgrade appeared over the Internet in 2009 on the Hobnail fan release, ‘Empire Strikes Back’, sans the intro and outro to the show, this was followed in 2014 by Unicorn’s ‘And Now The Time Has Come’ with a better source than before and it’s audio intact. At the beginning of 2018, another new tape climbed on to the internet, posted on to Soundcloud, for whatever reason, the recording was very quickly pulled again but not before being snagged for prosperity by an enterprising and quick-witted fan. This 2018 source was reportedly captured by the original taper wiring his tape recorder to the TV speaker. A throughly dangerous practice that would only be best attempted by nobody ever. If our friend wasn’t catapulted against the living room door almost immediately, he should be hired by NASA.”

“On this set we offer you two choices, firstly, the 2018 version of this show, secondly, the 2014 version from the hard to find Unicorn release for your comparison and enjoyment”

So, as for the sound, the liner notes attest to the two different versions of the recordings – The first stripped from the MP3 / WAV sourced audio that was uploaded to Soundcloud in 2018 – It sounds great for its age. The technical nuance of our friends skills meaning that, apart from a little fuzzy static all the way through, the show appears in glorious mono. The sound, mixed with sweeps of overexcited screaming from time to time, has the instruments a little lighter in the mix than I would have liked but, at least for the time, the Fabs voices can all be heard, that s until we get to “Boys” with which Ringo’s voice is obviously obliterated, making this an instrumental version – on the plus side, we get McCartney’s bass a lot clearer than we usually might so there is a little more musical merit to this. In comparison to the version that was on Unicorn’s 2014 release, it is longer by seconds, has a little less flutter on the tape but the earlier release just sounds a little more like it comes from a source tape – A lot less static (Though there is still a little hum apparent on the quieter songs (’Till There Was You). In short, you need both tapes – Helpfully, they’re both here.

“It was on the 20th of November, 1963, the Beatles played two shows at the ABC Ardwick theatre in Manchester, England. Followed by Pathé, the news agency filmed two songs from the first show .. The audio here is taken from two different sources giving two different viewpoints to parts of the show.”

Pathe recorded audio? We’re in safe hands. Short of a few songs, these two songs are still well within the time frame of 1963, sound fantastic (Even over the screaming girls) and are mercifully complete. From the archives, they have a vintage sound but fit right in.

“Back to December, the Beatles appeared on the hit variety show, ‘The Morecambe and Wise Show’ or ’Two of A Kind’ .. when the Beatles recorded three of their own compositions, alongside the golden oldie, ‘Moonlight Bay’ after they took part on a little skit .. The source here was the best we could find and sounds much better than you’ll have in your collection already.”

Already released piecemeal on “Anthology Vol. 1”, here the label have finally captured the full Beatles portions of the broadcast adding the ATV intro, “All My Loving”, closing skit too, including john’s dirty joke the they ‘couldn’t do’. There’s something that’s lacking via the visuals here but it is, thankfully, complete. Although it might not sound ‘Anthology’ full, the sound is closer to the broadcasts from earlier on the CD, like this audio came from the vintage TV tapes.

We also have for you, as a nice little (Undated) ’63 bonus, an incomplete snippet for the auction acetate of the Beatles early attempt at ‘What Goes On’, the John penned track that would end up being Ringo’s turn on “Rubber Soul” but presented here with it’s previously unfinished lyrics. The acetate, given by George to his brother Harry and other family members. The demo, feating John’s vocals and, presumably with (both) John and George on guitars, was originally offered for sale by Bonham’s auction house in December 2012 but (relisted) by Parlogram in late 2017. There was only a snippet offered by the auction house at the time of writing but this is it’s premier on silver-pressed CD.”

As you might have heard this demo floating round on the internet, it seems to make sense that it is also included ‘timeframe’ wise. A simple little rendition with the lyrics, “How can I conceal, the thrill that I feel, is our love still real, now dear, is it so” (So already considered  for Ringo, then!) For a 24 second demo, it has the right to inclusion and most certainly will do for now until someone releases the full thing (Hopefully!)

I’m going to recommend this CD as the version to get – Contrasting the previous releases by No Label, Valkerie (Misterclaudel), etc, With a classy packaging, era correct photos (Of the rehearsals of the main show in fact!), the lengthy liner notes, this is a superb little package and has been filled to perfection.

If you liked this review, buy me a cup of joe. (Suggested: $3 a shot or $7.5 for a double)

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