John Lennon – A “Shaved Fish” Variation

A while back blog reader and correspondent Ned in the US sent through some photos of Beatles and Beatles-related oddities from his collection. I’ve already published a couple of posts featuring his rare “Love” CD single, and a still-sealed copy of the “Lennon” 4 CD box set with a unique printing error that he has.

Ned has also sent some shots of an unusual copy of John Lennon’s 1975 compilation CD “Shaved Fish”. Its believed this is a rare withdrawn release originally made in Japan but intended for the US market, and that it was subsequently withdrawn from sale and replaced with (the more common) locally pressed Capitol version. As you can see below there are variations in both the rear cover and interior artwork, and in the printing on the CD itself. Here’s the rear cover of the rare version:

Rear cover of the withdrawn "Shaved Fish" release

Ned writes: “The back cover art of the withdrawn “Shaved Fish” doesn’t list the producer credits on the bottom that are found on the common U.S. release.  Also notice that the label number CDP 7 46642 2 (upper right corner) is the same as the common [U.S.] one, indicating that the release was intended as the official U.S. CD.  Had this Japan-made CD been intended for the Japanese market or elsewhere it would have had a different reference number. I’ve also included a photo of both releases side-by-side.  It’s possible that the EU version of “Shaved Fish” has the same art as the withdrawn U.S. one but since I’ve never run into a European import of it I can’t confirm that”:


Ned says: “The withdrawn version (pictured on top) has the words “Lennon Plastic Ono Band” at the top of the disc just under the EMI logo and the name, “Shaved Fish” at the bottom.  While the official and far more common re-release (pictured on bottom) shows the Capitol logo instead of the EMI logo while John Lennon’s full name appears without the addition of the Plastic Ono Band.  (It’s awkward to call the bottom one the “official release” since most people never knew there had even BEEN a withdrawn one).  How did I acquire this withdrawn one?  I really don’t know!  I just bought it when it came out and then it swiftly disappeared for a few years until I saw it again in it’s reincarnated state.”

Thanks again to Ned for providing these photos and info. If anyone has any further information on this Lennon release it’d be good to share it. Either post a comment using the blog “Comment” link below, or email me direct at

I have a couple of vinyl LP versions of the “Shaved Fish” release in my own collection and Ned has inspired me to drag these out and do a Label Variations post on these – so keep an eye out for that soon. 

3 thoughts on “John Lennon – A “Shaved Fish” Variation

  1. Pingback: Label Variations Part 4 – Shaved Fish « Beatles Blog

  2. Very interesting – I have the LP version PCS 7173 – YAX.949 OC 062 05987 – the record labels are misprinted or reversed. So side 1 is actually side 2 and vice versa ?! Is this rare ??


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