All alone on the rack

Dave Schuler is asking: “What was the first record album you purchased with your own money?”

Cover art for Something New by the Beatles 1964The parental units weren’t about to fork over any coin of the realm for me to squander on vinyl — or styrene, as appropriate — so this is my first record album, period. Something New is one of those Frankenalbums Capitol persisted in issuing in those days, partly due to the fact that British LPs tended to have 13 or 14 tracks, while we Americans were dumb enough to settle for eleven. The track list includes eight songs from the UK A Hard Day’s Night album, though not the title track; two cuts from the British Long Tall Sally EP, and a German version of “I Want to Hold Your Hand.” The track ordering is not bad, actually, and for the most part, we were spared Capitol’s infamous mono-reprocessed-for-stereo mixing, though I wouldn’t have known that at the time, having bought the mono version on the basis that (1) I had a fairly crummy record player and (2) stereo would have been a buck extra. Something New peaked at #2 on the Billboard album chart and stayed there for nine weeks; what kept it out of first place was the United Artists issue of the soundtrack to A Hard Day’s Night, another dog’s-breakfast compilation with eight actual Beatles tracks, plus four instrumentals presided over by George Martin.





4 comments

  1. Trumwill »

    7 December 2014 · 6:13 pm

    Since this is a pseudonym, I can admit that these were my first two :

    Air Supply’s Greatest Hits
    Michael Bolton’s “Time Love and Tenderness”

    When I was young and irresponsible I was young and irresponsible.

  2. CGHill »

    7 December 2014 · 7:02 pm

    I will admit to owning one Michael Bolton set: this one from 1976, released under his, um, real name.

  3. Roger Green »

    8 December 2014 · 3:51 am

    Boy, in retrospect, I HATED Something New, because it was had so many songs in common with the HDN soundtrack. I say “in retrospect” because it probably wasn’t until 1967 or 1968, when I was catching up with the albums I diudn’t own, and that weren’t available from the Capitol Record Club, that I bought HDN

  4. CGHill »

    8 December 2014 · 2:19 pm

    And I suspect enough buyers thought “Why, if I’m getting songs from the HDN soundtrack, I am not getting ‘A Hard Day’s Night’ itself?” to pass up Something New entirely. Buyers didn’t care that it was on Capitol, the “official” label; the week the Beatles had the entire Top 5, four different labels were involved.

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