Late last year I posted a couple of label variations from my collection of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band vinyl LP’s.
That page has been getting a few hits, so here is another selection – this time for Let It Be. Again, a couple of vinyl label variations from around the world. I don’t have as many copies of Let It Be as I do Sgt. Pepper, but am still looking!
I guess the place to start is with the original UK Apple version:
As you’ll probably know, in the UK the very earliest copies of Let It Be were released in a lavish box-set and came with a thick book of text, dialogue extracts and photographs from the film “Let It Be”. Those box-sets, which had the catalogue number PCS-1, now fetch very good prices and in good condition are very collectable. While the box-set’s number was PCS-1, the record inside and all subsequent releases actually had the catalogue number PCS 7096, which you can see in the image above. After stocks of the box-set sold out Let It Be was only ever available as a single sleeve album.
In Australia early copies also came in a similar box-set with the book, and it had the green Apple label. The only real variation was that the catalogue number for the box was PXS-1, and the record number was PCSO 7096.
Meanwhile, across the Tasman Sea, New Zealand Beatle fans also got a box-set and book for a short time (though I’ve never actually seen one of these from NZ) and then a single sleeve cover after that. Their pressing has New Zealand’s particular version of the green Apple:
As you can see, in New Zealand the catalogue number was PCSM 7096. You can click here for a comprehensive list of which countries around the world got the box-set and book, plus some further info on variations.
In the United States they did something different again. For some reason it was decided not to provide the book and box set, and only make the record available in a gate-fold cover. Inside the gate-fold were just a small selection of the photographs from the book that was released in other markets. The other big variation was that the record label itself was not green, but red:
I believe that this version of Let It Be was very widely bootlegged in a very accurately reproduced cover and so there are consequently a lot of very good fakes out there, complete with the red Apple label. There is some information here on how to tell if you have a fake. My copy has a fairly washed-out looking label and I suspect it may well not be an authentic original….I’m going to do some more digging.
Later US copies went from the Apple to Capitol labels:
Among my Let It Be copies I have a couple of Asian pressings. They can be hard to identify exactly because in some territories they imported the covers from the UK and just inserted locally pressed vinyl. That’s particularly true with pressings from Hong Kong because at the time it was a British protectorate with lots of ties back to the “mother” country. I think this Apple label below is a Hong Kong pressing, but I’m not sure…
This next one is a little easier to identify – it actually says on the back cover it is made and printed in Malaysia. Having said that, the record label is very similar (with a few variations) to the suspected Hong Kong pressing above:
This next one is probably the most different and unusual. I picked this up in 1992 – the year of it’s release. Its the Russian pressing on the AnTrop label. I think this particular record was produced in St Petersburg because around the AnTrop logo are the words “consummari in unum St.Petersburg” (Thank you to the fantastic Beatles On Vinyl, site which has an absolute wealth of information about every Russian/USSR Beatles release):
Finally, up almost to the present day and the most recent US vinyl pressings of the album – the so called “Limited Edition” re-issues from Capitol/Apple in the United States a few years ago. For these they resurrected the green Apple but with the variation of a white background instead of the usual black. Notice the Parlophone logo also appears on the right-hand side:
Finally, an very unusual one sent in by Andrey, who is a collector who lives in Russia. This one is a rare one – “Let It Be” from Guatemala:
Well, that’s a quick trawl through just some of the different label variations for Let It Be on vinyl. Of course vinyl copies of the album are still readily available in the UK, though I don’t have a copy. In fact the whole Beatles catalogue is still in print on vinyl there.
I wonder if Apple Records will come good on the rumours that were circulating last year when the new Remastered CD’s and box sets came out? There was talk that a vinyl box-set was in preparation – on audiophile-quality, 180 gram vinyl. Nice!
See also: Label Variations – Part One – Sgt. Pepper
See also: Label Variations – Part Three – McCartney’s Choba B CCCP
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Pingback: Label Variations Part 3 – Versions of McCartney’s Choba B CCCP « Beatles Blog
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Pingback: Label Variations Part 4 – Shaved Fish « Beatles Blog
For your information, here in Hong Kong, The Beatles records (British version only) sold were pressed in EMI’s pressing plants in Singapore or Malaysia, EMI did not press vinyl record in Hong Kong.
The following is the label of my copy of “Let it be” purchased in 1974 here.
I also released some articles about The Beatles records in my blog, (http://hk.myblog.yahoo.com/maninov4u/index?l=f&id=10)
Even though they are written in Chinese, pictures of some of my collection were posted, for example, there is the Indian pressing of the 45 rpm single Long Tall Sally/I call your name (http://hk.myblog.yahoo.com/maninov4u/article?mid=1961), I think you may find it intriguing.
Thanks for posting this material on Asian Beatles releases which I will read with interest. And thanks for the clarification of Hong Kong releases and wher they were pressed.
About Russian edition: the correct name of the company is AnTrop (not Anton). All known variations from my collection are shown here: http://beatlesvinyl.com.ua/ru/P91_00131.html
I haven’t yet prepared text for this page, but all the images have been uploaded.
Thank you for the correction. Thanks to your very special site I have learned a lot about all the Russian releases. I now understand that its AnTrop Records and not Anton Records. I will correct this on my “Let It Be” post.
Hi, thanks for that info. I have an original MINT condition version of the UK release of Let It Be with the book enclosed in a cardboard sleeve and numbered PCS 7096 on the apple label and P-PCS 7096 on the sleeve. I am looking to sell but not sure where I can get the best price as it varies so much on different sites. Any ideas please?
Its hard to say. If you have a local second-hand record store nearby that specialises in good quality collectors items then it might be best to take it to them and maybe they’d sell it on consignment for you? Otherwise the other alternative is the ubiquitous Ebay. I’ve seen poor quality “Let It Be” box sets sell for A$250+, and then seen really good copies go for less (a good quality Canadian version recent fetched around A$150!). Then I’ve seen really nice mint copies with (complete with all the inner cardboard pieces which hold the book and record) go for anywhere between A$300 – $600. So its hard to tell. Either way, mint copies of this record are definitely collectable, usually very expensive, and there is a market out there for them. Hope this helps.
I got a copy of sgt. Pepper.. with a dobbel label on side 1, it´s actually cutting off a bit of the last song. The print is from about 1989.