Saturday, July 16, 2011

Let It Be for the USA and Canada

The soundtrack for the Beatles final United Artists' film "Let It Be" was released in the USA and Canada on or about May 18 1970 (10 days after the release of the UK version). The tracklisting for the LP is the only constant and the cover packaging for the LP varied for both American and Canadian copies.

In Canada, the LP came in a box set containing an outer slip case, an inner slip case which held another cardboard inner tray for a 160 page colour book plus the LP (cover and vinyl). In the USA, the LP was distributed by United Artists yet manufactured by Apple. This meant that the LP was issued as a gatefold cover without the book.

The LP was part of the Capitol "6000" series in Canada and was issued the catalogue number Apple SOAL-6351. The outer slipcase features the four photographs used for the front cover of the UK LP but no text and not title/artist. The back of the slipcase is black with the catalogue number on the upper left, credits for the design and photographs in tiny letter on the lower left. "Distributed in canada By Capitol Records (Canada) Ltd." in the lower center and the printer's logo on the lower right. The LP front cover jacket has the four photos and text with the LP title "Let It Be". The back cover consists of four black and white photos of the individual Beatles with either a white border or no border. The original SOAL-6231 version has the liner notes at the top and is followed by the tracklistings (no songwriter's credits). Thanks are given below the photos and once again the design and photo credits appear on one line. The Apple logo is centered and the distribution blub mentioned above appears in either white or light blue. The whole thing is framed by a white line. The lables are the green full Apple on side one and the half Apple on side two. "Dig A Pony" is announced as "I Dig A Pony" both on the LP cover and the side one labels. The labels were either pressed at RCA in Smith Falls or Compo in Cornwall, Ontario. A photo of the Canadian example is shown above.

The USA LP was issued as a gatefold cover. The catalogue number is Apple AR 34001. The front cover of the LP has the four colour photos of the Beatles and the "Let It Be" text above it. The back cover of the LP has the blurb at the top with the tracklisting underneath the blurb. The tracklisting consists of the songs in order of appearance and once again does not include the songwriters credits. The four black and white photographs of the individual Beatles do not have white borders around them. The thanks and design/photo credits are below followed by a red Apple to signify the United Artists distribution and finally the words "Manufactud by Apple Records, Inc. 1700 Broadway, New York, New York 10019, an ABKCO managed company" follows (I'm sure Paul was impressed..haha). The whole back cover is framed by a white border. The inner gatefold features photographs taken during the "Get Back/Let It Be" sessions including a large colour photo on the left gatefold of the Beatles at Twickenham Studios in London, some smaller colour photos of the Beatles at either Twickenham Studios or Apple Studios in London as well as a photo of the Beatles playing on the rooftop of the Apple building at 3 Savile Row, London. The labels on the US original copies are a red-tinted full Apple on side one and a red-tinted half Apple for side two. (Red-tinted to denote the United Artists distribution). "Dig A Pony" on both label and back cover appear as "I Dig A Pony".

Most original copies of the label in the USA have the last song on side one "Maggie Mae" credits as (P.D.) meaning public domain whereas later copies may have the credits as (P.D. arr. Lennon-McCartney-Harrison-Starkey).

The inner sleeve for this LP is usually generic white or none at all. This release is only available in stereo as mono had been phased out by then.

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