Badfinger – Finest Moments Rare LP

The British online second-hand collectables dealer eil.com has listed for sale one of the the most scarce Apple Records vinyl releases.

It is a Badfinger LP called Finest Moments

This was a ‘best of’ disc compiled by EMI Australia in 1989. But it seems they didn’t get the correct permissions from head office, and so only ten copies were ever pressed. These were sent out for review purposes. The project was then hastily scrapped and the record withdrawn from their catalogue.

The disc, dedicated as ‘A Memorial to Pete Ham, Tom Evans and Mal Evans’, has sixteen tracks. The copy they have for sale (for a cool £1,995.00, or $3,271.00 Australian) reportedly comes from a former EMI senior executive and has the catalogue number SAPCOR 28.

eil.com says: “Because of ongoing legal problems that Apple were having at the time, the project was scrapped even before any sleeves were printed, just a 12″ insert on green paper [was included].” Presumably they got that part of the story from the EMI executive who owned the record. The Applelog Book says that the song ‘Without You’ is incorrectly titled as ‘I Can’t Live (If Living Is Without You)’.

Interestingly that same catalogue number (SAPCOR 28) was later utilised by Apple for a different Best Of Badfinger double LP (and single-disc CD) that it officially released in 1995: The great site The Worldwide Apple Records Discography has some more (small) images of the Finest Moments LP if you are interested.

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Wingspan – More Unusual Variations

Since we published information on the Limited Edition version of Paul McCartney’s Wingspan – Hits and History CD collection last week, our friend Andrey in Russia has provided information about three more unusual and collectable versions.

The first is this Ukrainian release. Here’s the rear cover:ukraine2a

(click on any of the images to see larger versions)

And here are the two Ukrainian discs:ukraine1bVersion 2

Andrey also provided information on not one, but two very collectable Japanese variants:Version 2Version 3As you can see from the shots of the spines below these carry the same Japanese catalogue number and barcode:  wingspan-japan-spines-2versions-1

And both come with an additional booklet (written in Japanese and English). However, in one version this booklet is incorporated inside the slipcase (its white spine can be seen below), while the other version has the added booklet outside the slipcase (orange spine in the image below):wingspan-japan-spines-2versions

(click on any of the images to see larger versions)

The other main differences between these two releases are detailed further here (and in all pictures Version 1 is above, and Version 2 is below):

1) JAPANESE Version 1:
– the “hands” image on the front of the slipcase is printed (i.e. not holographic)
– slipcase in made in Japan
– additional booklet is inside the slip case
– The obi strip on the left hand side is a regular sized obi (i.e. small)
2) JAPANESE Version 2:
– the “hands” image on the front is the holographic image
– slipcase is made in the EU/UK                                                                                          – the additional Japanese/English booklet is outside the slip case
– the obi is large – it wraps right around and covers the entire rear of the outer slipcase

Another thing to note is that in Japan Wingspan – Hits and History contains an additional track to the rest of the world. It’s the song ‘Eat At Home’ and this can be found as track 19 on CD 1. (EU and US versions only have 18 songs on this disc).

Beatles Memorabilia and Records Auction

There’s an interesting auction of some cool Beatle items coming up at Heritage Auctions in the USA on June 24 and 25.

The auction is part of a much larger entertainment consignment. The Beatles section starts here.

Amongst the autographs, photographs, ticket stubs and records on offer are two items that caught our eye.

First was this unique poster prepared for Apple/Capitol Records in 1970. It was for distribution to record stores owners as a Christmas greeting:

Joy Poster

Second was this very rare example of a working prototype device that Apple employee (and so-called “electronics wizard”) Magic Alex actually produced:Magic Alex 1Magic Alex 2As the auction site says: Yanni Alexis “Magic Alex” Mardas was associated with the Beatles during the 1965-1969 period, part of that time as head of Apple Electronics, which was a money-losing failure. He impressed the Beatles, especially John Lennon who coined his nickname, with his gadgets and big ideas to revolutionize the consumer electronics business. Mardas claimed he could build them a 72-track recording studio which never materialized. Other of his ideas that never quite worked out include: a flying saucer, loudspeaker wallpaper, a personal pocket force field, invisible paint, and color-changing paint…. 

Another Very Limited Edition Sgt Pepper Up for Auction

You might have heard recently about the signed copy of Sgt Pepper which sold at auction for US$290,500. It made headlines around the world because it shattered the previous record for such an item.

The album was purchased by an unnamed buyer from the Midwest USA. An anonymous seller parted with the album through the Dallas-based Heritage Auctions, which ahead of the bidding estimated the album would sell for $30,000.

The album was a U.K. Parlophone copy with a high gloss cover and gatefold:

beatles_signed_sgt_peppers_-_h_2013

Now comes news of another perhaps even rarer copy of Sgt Pepper that will be auctioned by the same auction house.

I got an email last week from a guy named Tony Gillespie alerting Beatlesblogger to this one. Its a copy of Pepper on the Capital label – but the cover has a major difference to what you are used to. Many of the faces on the famous shot have been superimposed with the faces of Capitol Records sales executives from the day. I first came across talk of this unusual item this back in 2009. Its estimated that only 40-50 copies were ever made for internal company distribution. Now, one is coming onto the market. Tony Gillespie is helping the owners of this extremely rare LP to publicise the auction – and so I asked him to provide me with some more details. His response is printed below:

Here’s a quick history of the “Doctored” Sgt Pepper’s cover:

Earlier this year, I received a message from a friend of mine named Chad, a prominent local buyer and seller of collectibles and antiques. He purchased a set of Beatles records, and since records aren’t his forte, he contacted me, Tony Gillespie, owner of Gillespie Records, because he knew of my extensive Beatles record collection, which has been called one of Indiana’s finest. (www.facebook.com/gillespierecords) He mentioned a “weird Sgt Pepper’s cover with different faces on it.” I asked him to send a photo of that record first.

I recalled reading an article that was generated from a story in Record Collector magazine (http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/the-beatles-album-artwork-worth-70000-276691) about a “doctored” Sgt Pepper’s cover. I found the article and waited for the photo. When I opened the attachment, my knees buckled. There it was, the Holy Grail! The article estimates the cover to be worth 70,000 pounds (equvalant to $100,000+ US dollars, roughly).

doctored

I called the owner (Chad) and his wife (Kimberly), and told them to sit down. I revealed what the article said, and the roller coaster ride began. The three of us formed a partnership, with them owning the record, and me acting as their representative and got to work on finding the best home for the record. We contacted Perry Cox, the leading authority on all things Beatles, and he agreed to have us to his home (we flew from Indiana to Arizona) to personally authenticate the record. It was the first time he had ever held the “doctored” cover in his hands.perry cox

Perry estimated there were only 40-50 copies of the record produced (a claim mirrored by Bruce Spizer in his book, “The Beatles Story on Capitol Records, Part 2) for a Sales Executive meeting held in late 1967 in Florida. One cover is thought to have been made for each of the executives featured on the cover, but only 3-5 are known to still exist, and NONE have ever been sold on the open market, making the true value of this cover unknown. We were able to successfully tie the record to an executive on the cover, which Perry says could double the value!!

Perry also gave me this quote for promotional purposes…he has given his permission to me to print it:

“Among the rarest and most interesting artifacts produced during the original era of the Beatles classic Sgt. Pepper’s LHCB”, was an extremely rare U.S. stereo album cover version prepared exclusively for a Capitol Records party in honor of the landmark album in late 1967. The front cover of the album featured photos of noted Capitol Records employees amongst the many noted famous images we’ve now become so familiar with. Today, this has become one of the most sought after albums by collectors and fans all over the world. With only about 40+ examples made, I rank it one of the top 10 all time collectible albums by the Beatles in the world.”———Perry Cox, April, 2013.

We settled on Heritage Auctions of Texas to handle the first public sale of the “Doctored” Sgt Pepper’s cover, which will be held on August 10. They gave an auction estimate of $25,000-$30,000 but admitted the estimate in this case was hard to pinpoint due to the record’s obscurity. Chad, Kimberly and I have set up a Facebook page dedicated to the record www.facebook.com/rarestbeatlesrecord , a Twitter account @Beatlesrarist and a website www.rarestbeatlesrecord.com.  We also made a You Tube video to detail the story a bit better here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=hhg4XzjCN0E

covers