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Beatles VI

Categories: Beatles albums US-only albums

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Beatles VI was the sixth album of Beatles music released in America in less than two years during the awesome height of Beatlemania; the album collects some songs from the non-US Beatles For Sale not found on the US Beatles '65 LP, some tracks recorded specially for America (take that Blighty!), songs from the Help! project that would follow Beatles VI, and the single-only song "Yes It Is".

The album is similar to Beatles '65 and can be considered a companion piece to that album: both were made from a hotchpotch of non-US releases, leaning heavily toward Beatles For Sale, and carried America's mania through early and mid-1965. Beatles VI contains a mere 11 tracks (fewer than non-US Beatles albums of this era) and features several cover versions (including John Lennon's scintillating performance on Larry Williams' "Bad Boy").

Most interestingly, historically, Beatles VI contains tracks that would later be released in the UK on the Help! soundtrack album (including "You Like Me Too Much" and "Tell Me What You See" — both good, if not quite that album's best), and for that reason has a 'progressive' aspect missing on '65. The Beatles' sound was always changing, and it is quite a testament to the band's growth that even a cobbled-together release such as this one, done by record label committee rather than Beatle artistic intention, can't obscure the relentless parade of novel sounds and textures that would continue to grab the world's attention throughout the Beatles' career.

Beatles VI is available on CD for fans who want to hear the music the same way the all-important American audience did back in 1965. And if it was good enough for them then...

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