That Spanish Beatles album
|Por Siempre Beatles|
“Por Siempre Beatles” is a compilation album by The Beatles originally released in Argentina on October 8, 1971 (EMI-Odeon LDS 2200), and in Spain in January 1972 (EMI/Odeon J060-04973). It collects various songs from 1965–1970 which were not available on any of the British studio albums. I had heard about the album, looked for it, found it and bought it when I visited Spain in the late seventies.
“Por Siempre Beatles” was also released in several other Spanish-speaking countries: Colombia, Ecuador, Nicaragua, Uruguay and Venezuela. In Nicaragua, it was released on the Apple label, whereas the album was on Odeon elsewhere. It was pressed both in mono and stereo editions – country dependant.
The album’s origin goes back to 1968. In that year, a compilation LP called “Beatles’ Celebration” was planned for release (and the Odeon record company also made this public), but the project was aborted due to the album not receiving authorisation from Parlophone. This was due to a condition imposed by the Beatles themselves at the time of renegotiating their contract in 1967. They did not want to allow any EMI branch to release any more compilations when and how they wanted, which had been done previously. The order and the selection of songs for “Beatles Celebration” was slightly different from the one featured on the later released “Por Siempre Beatles” album.
The album, whose title translates to “Forever Beatles” or “Beatles Forever”, is best remembered for the inclusion of two B-sides, “The Inner Light”, which was the B-side to “Lady Madonna,” and “I’m Down,” the B-side to “Help!”, neither of which were available on American or British Beatles albums until the late 1970s. Both “The Inner Light” and “I’m Down”, along with “You Know My Name (Look Up the Number)” (the B-side to “Let It Be”) were the only Beatles songs not to appear on an American Beatles album in the sixties or early seventies.
Because of the inclusion of “I’m Down” and the George Harrison composition, “The Inner Light,” Por Siempre Beatles was, for much of the seventies, a highly-sought album among Beatles collectors.
When “I’m Down” appeared on the 1976 compilation album “Rock ‘n’ Roll Music” and “The Inner Light” appeared on “Rarities” (first included in the 1978 boxed set, The Beatles Collection, and then released as a separate British album in 1979), interest in “Por Siempre Beatles” waned among international collectors, but it remained popular in the countries where it was released.
None of the twelve tracks on “Por Siempre” Beatles appear on an official British studio Beatles album, although “Day Tripper” and “We Can Work It Out” are included on the 1966 British compilation album, “A Collection of Beatles Oldies”, while “Fool on the Hill”, “Strawberry Fields Forever”, “Your Mother Should Know”, “Penny Lane”, “Baby, You’re a Rich Man”, and “Blue Jay Way” appear on the American Magical Mystery Tour album, which was widely available as an import in Great Britain prior to its release in the UK in 1976. “I Call Your Name” and “Yes It Is” were only released on American albums in the sixties (“The Beatles’ Second Album” and “Beatles VI” respectively.)
|Back cover (Argentina)|
The album was also released in Brazil under the title “Beatles Forever”. That was an Odeon release, but utilising the Apple label.
|Brazilian edition, “Beatles Forever”|
|Brazilian label, side 2.|
“Por Siempre Beatles” is a much loved album in the countries where it was released, it exists as a cassette, as an 8-track and has been lovingly remade into a CD by bootleggers.
- Vacacion De Un Dia (Day Tripper)
- Si, Esto Es (Yes, It Is)
- Estoy Muy Abatido (I’m Down)
- El Loco En La Colina (The Fool On The Hill)
- Frutillas (Strawberry Fields Forever)
- Podemos Solucionarlo (We Can Work It Out)
- Tu Madre Sabria (Your Mother Should Know)
- Penny Lane
- Nene Eres Un Hombre Rico (Baby, You’re A Rich Man)
- Te Nombro (I Call Your Name)
- La Luz Interior (The Inner Light)
- Triste Simple Camino (Blue Jay Way)