Beatles Please Please Me Album Stereo Mix- MFSL Version

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by stereoguy, Jul 5, 2017.

  1. Dinstun

    Dinstun Forum Resident

    Getting back to topic, the result of the Feb 25 mixing sessions were reels E48978 and E48979. I'm wondering about these two reels. These presumably still exist? Would the corresponding tracks on these be the same as the LP masters?
  2. lukpac

    lukpac Senior Member

    Milwaukee, WI
    And 8-track. Hence "tape master".

    They don't exist.
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  3. Dinstun

    Dinstun Forum Resident

    This is per Barrett not listing an "ELSTREE" catalog number, or is there more known about when and why they were lost? Is it possible E48978/9 were disassembled and re-assembled to make the mono and stereo album masters?

    I know there is a distinction between twin-track and stereo tape heads being used on the BTR3s, but am unclear as to when/if the tracks moved from twin-track to stereo. Barrett lists E48978/9 as Δ/2T, but I don't understand why they wouldn't have mixed to a machine with a stereo head, if they knew the album master needed to be stereo?
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  4. lukpac

    lukpac Senior Member

    Milwaukee, WI
    Correct about no ELSTREE number.

    The stereo/twin-track question is also valid. I don't have a definitive answer, but there are a few things to think about:

    1) It seems that perhaps the exact recording process varied a bit from session to session.
    2) It seems that the way certain things were done is a bit odd in retrospect.
    3) Barrett's notes aren't always completely clear, possibly because Barrett didn't have a complete understanding of the sessions in question, due to missing tapes and/or hard to decipher documentation.

    That is to say, it's possible:

    - The documentation and/or Barrett got it wrong, and the notation actually should have been Δ/Z.
    - The PPM stereo master tape was actually recorded with a twin-track head.
    - Some other possibility.
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  5. Stan94

    Stan94 Forum Resident

    Paris, France
    I made a quick shoot-out between the German (A-2 on Apple) and the UK (-2) PPM and the German is a more pleasant listening experience. It's more laid-back, but maybe the levels between L and R channels are different also. It struck the most on the guitar solo on Boys where the German disc is less aggessive than the UK one. I'll try and make a recording tomorrow to check the waveforms and play the songs simultaneously (ISHST, Anna and T&S); Also I'll check T&S against other German discs, The Beatles Greatest from 1965 and Beatles Greatest (with the movie chairs on the cover).
  6. DRM

    DRM Forum Resident

    I read this as awfully good.
  7. EdogawaRampo

    EdogawaRampo Forum Resident

    Sorry...I was being deliberately obtuse. Duophonic is always awfully bad. And it is a testament to corporate willingness to deceive by pretending you were getting 'stereo' with these and charging an extra dollar. At least Capitol was a bit more honest ("For Stereo Phonographs") than MGM who emblazoned "Sounds Great In Stereo!" on its fake stereo records. But maybe that wasn't even a lie, exactly. Perhaps those records would "sound great in stereo" if they indeed were stereo.
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  8. DRM

    DRM Forum Resident

    I'm thinking I really like Duophonic.

    But I'm thinking you don't.
  9. EdogawaRampo

    EdogawaRampo Forum Resident

    I've long since lost all interest in how many beats there is on one intro or another, only what the highest SQ quality available is and whether or not something is in true stereo. But the info here seems relevant to this discussion:

    The Beatles Germany LP HÖRZU stereo version

    Non-German true stereo Beatles Magical Mystery Tour*
  10. EdogawaRampo

    EdogawaRampo Forum Resident

    Well, actually, and I suppose I shouldn't be admitting it around here because of the risk of instantaneous mob shaming, but it does seem like I've owned Duos in the past that I thought sounded OK, even good. It has been a very long time (20+ years?) since I listened to one, though. I sometimes confuse awful bass/treble bias fake stereo with Duophonic which gives that echo and bit of phase delay that can fool the listener into thinking there's some real stereo information being transmitted.
  11. DRM

    DRM Forum Resident

    I don't own this one...but the best Please Please Me I do own... is also a U.K. TC-PCS 3042. I now realize that the best sounding Beatles cassettes...are the initial releases straight from the U.K. The ones with the paper labels.

  12. Stan94

    Stan94 Forum Resident

    Paris, France
    From the 3 tracks I've sampled, it seems that the mixes are exactly the same. It's the EQ that differs. In fact the UK seems dryer than the German PPM, maybe the hiss from the extra tape generation and a little EQ explains the added "air" on the German. The records go out of sync most of the time so it's difficult to compare. Oddly, Twist and Shout from UK -2 and Beatles Greatest play in abslolute sync throughout. No other TaS stay in sync. So maybe Germany used a copy of the stereo master until 1965 and a new copy was made in 1966 (after The Beatles Greatest was released anyway) and the speed was a little off then ? I don't know.
    Over to you guys.
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  13. MarkTheShark

    MarkTheShark Forum Resident

    If you're talking about "This Boy" and "Yes It Is" on the Love Songs compilation album, that could be a simple matter of it being a Capitol (U.S.) project, which it was, right? Even though it was an international release, my memory is that it originated in the United States. Now, "I'm Down" was true stereo on Rock And Roll Music (which was also done in the United States), but like many of us, I'm just speculating about what might have occurred, and I have no inside knowledge. But if you think it through it makes sense, it could just have been a dumb mistake.

    Again, if I may offer my uninformed speculation, it may be that someone decided to take another crack at "I Want To Hold Your Hand" in 1966 as it was a 4-track recording, and they could avoid the dreaded "hole in the middle," which we know George Martin disliked. For the earlier tracks there wasn't much that could be done, other than revert to mono (as they did later in the CD era). And since EMI UK made their own fake stereo mix of "She Loves You" for the Collection Of Oldies compilation, evidently they were not going to use mono mixes on the stereo version of the album -- which would have been the only other option for songs like "Please Please Me" and "From Me To You." It may be that some fans/audiophiles preferred the earlier stereo mix of "I Want To Hold Your Hand" for whatever reasons, but for the "powers that be" it may have been as simple as, "hole in the middle, unacceptable" -- except as noted above, when it was unavoidable.

    But I really don't know.
  14. jtiner

    jtiner Forum Resident

    I've always thought Ticket to Ride was one of the best Duophonic tunes, and I Feel Fine one of the worst (or THE worst).
  15. EdogawaRampo

    EdogawaRampo Forum Resident

    I think all Beatles Duophonic releases were either dumb mistakes IMO or "just make do" quick decisions, since wonderful sounding true stereo mixes had been made of I Want To Hold Your Hand and This Boy in 1963 and Yes It Is in 1965 (though with Yes It Is there was a tape dropout and that was most likely reason for it not being used at the time).

    My theory on IWTHYH and TB is they were lost -- mislabeled, put in the wrong drawer, tea spilt on the notes, something. The fact that the third stereo remix of IWTHYH was mislabelled as #1 is what makes me think this, as well as how damn good (and superior IMO) Martin's original 1963 stereo mix sounds to me and the others who heard it here:

    Unique two channel/twin track stereo mix of the Beatles "I Want To Hold Your Hand"

    Here's Lewisohn:

    "1966 Monday 7 November

    The LP was issued in both mono and stereo formats but since some of the songs had never been mixed for stereo — principally Beatles singles, which were released in mono until 1969 — a series of remix sessions were set up. None were attended by as much as a solitary Beatle.

    This was the first such session, George Martin planning to remix `Paperback Writer', `I Want To Hold Your Hand' and ` She Loves You' in three hours. But `Paperback Writer' alone took two hours so the others were left for another time.

    Studio One (control room only): 2.30-5.30pm. Stereo mixing: `I Want To Hold Your Hand' (remix 1, from take 17). P: George Martin. E: Geoff Emerick. 2E: Mike Stone.

    The third stereo remix of `I Want To Hold Your Hand', incorrectly numbered as one. Clearly neither of the two previous attempts — 21 October 1963 and 8 June 1965 — had been satisfactory.

    Clearly too, the task of remixing old songs was proving more of a handful than was first considered.

    Tuesday 8 November

    George Martin booked the studio on this day to remix three songs, `She Loves You', `I Want To Hold Your Hand' and ` From Me To You'. In the end `She Loves You' was left to the next day and `From Me To You' was never done. The album's stereo mix of this song is simply the original two-track tape, rhythm on the left channel, vocals on the right. [Keen students of the Beatles' output will be aware that the mono single and stereo LP versions differ, the mono being the only one to have harmonica in the introduction. This was because the single included a harmonica edit piece which was overlooked during the preparation of this album. The 14 March 1963 stereo mix of `From Me To You' had already been scrapped.] "

    As noted by Lewisohn above, the 1966 remix was actually the third stereo remix of I Want To Hold Your Hand, the first being mixed in October 1963 and the second in June 1965. I have problems accepting the "hole in the middle, unacceptable" theory in light of:

    1 Rubber Soul in stereo
    2 Day Tripper in stereo (remixed into stereo for A Collection Of Beatles Oldies with vocals in one channel)
    3 We Can Work It Out (also remixed into stereo for A Collection Of Beatles Oldies, ditto above)
    4 From Me To You (the raw stereo mix used for A Collection Of Beatles Oldies, ditto above and losing the harmonica in the process)

    Martin and/or other powers-that-be finding the above stereo mixes 'acceptable' but the original stereo mix of IWTHYH 'unacceptable' makes zero sense to me considering what ended up on the stereo edition of A Collection Of Beatles Oldies, which is what Martin's heavy stereo remixing schedule was purposed for -- getting stereo mixes ready for 'Oldies. Considering the kind of workload Martin appears to have had during those years, I find it equally likely that he or staff could not find the tape of the original stereo mix of IWTHYH or possibly didn't even remember they'd done the stereo mix two years earlier and another one year earlier -- thus marking #3 as #1. That confusion, in turn, is what I believe resulted in that original stereo mix going missing for 13 years and then popping back up in 1976.

    I think Martin's original '63 stereo mix of IWTHYH would have fit perfectly on the stereo edition of A Collection Of Beatles Oldies (in light of the new stereo mixes that ended up on it) and actually would have sounded better than what we got IMO. YMMV.
  16. lukpac

    lukpac Senior Member

    Milwaukee, WI
    I have a hard time believing the (minor) tape dropout was at all an issue. Far more likely is that Capitol was just being Capitol. They also used Duophonic for the A-side (Ticket To Ride); it's possible they didn't request stereo mixes of those two songs for some reason. And the only UK album release prior to Past Masters was Rarities, where several songs were issued in mono:

    Yes It Is
    This Boy
    The Inner Light
    Thank You Girl
    She's A Woman
    I Call Your Name
    Slow Down
    I'm Down
    Long Tall Sally

    It was presumably overlooked in 1966, but there's no evidence it was necessarily "missing" for 13 years. Once the 1966 mix was made, that was presumably considered canon, and the pulling of the 1963 mix for Australia was likely a mistake. John Barrett noted it in the early '80s, and it hasn't been used since. That doesn't mean it went missing again, it just means nobody has felt the need to use that mix.
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  17. lukpac

    lukpac Senior Member

    Milwaukee, WI
    Getting back to PPM/Die Beatles:

    I wouldn't consider the 2009 remasters any sort of "basis of a standard" either. Besides the obvious narrowing of various tracks, I don't buy the story that the bass frequencies were simply "restored". The 1987/8 CDs apparently had very little EQ, and some tracks from 2009 match the earlier versions pretty closely. Yet other tracks have significantly more bass. It makes more sense that the bass was boosted on those tracks for the 2009 remasters.

    The problem is there was no compression or limiting to remove. Die Beatles doesn't sound the way it does because of less compression, it sounds the way it does because of very different EQ and a difference in channel balance that makes the right channel about 3dB louder. You can EQ match the 2009 remaster to Die Beatles, and even though slight limiting was used in 2009, the right channel ends up being slightly *more* dynamic on the re-EQ'd 2009 (the left channel is slightly less dynamic, but the difference is less than 1dB). Don't believe me? Listen for yourself:

    I Saw Her Standing There [Die Beatles]
    I Saw Her Standing There [2009 re-EQ]

    It all comes down to different EQ, just as it does with a lot of German Beatles LPs.
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  18. Ben Sinise

    Ben Sinise Forum Reticent

    Exactly, you'd also think that if a different tape was used for Die Beatles there would be some slight track variation somewhere, a minor edit perhaps, yet nothing shows on The Usenet Guide to Beatles Recording Variations.
  19. Om

    Om Forum Resident

    Boston, MA
    Okay I'm having difficulty finding this information, apparently there are a few songs on Please Please Me that did have an official stereo mix but were lost.

    So, when they transfered over to CD including on the remasters they kept some of the tracks in mono on the stereo box set.

    How many stereo master tapes were lost? Wasn't "She Loves You" one of the lost mixes that can only be found on a very rare label as a single.

    Does anyone know of any others?
  20. Bertly

    Bertly formerly known as "Berty"

    I think 'I'll Get You' is another. From PLEASE PLEASE ME, 'Love Me Do' and 'P.S. I Love You'.
  21. WonkyWilly

    WonkyWilly Forum Resident

    Paradise, PA
    There were no "official stereo mixes" for the mono songs. They were recorded in twin-track, mixed to mono, and then the twin-track was trashed...not lost. No stereo, ever.
  22. slane

    slane Forum Resident

    Love Me Do & PS I Love You were recorded to mono only.
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  23. Om

    Om Forum Resident

    Boston, MA
    Why is the stereo release of Introducing The Beatles on Vee Jay so sought after, different mix?

    Two tracks were in mono on that hard to find copy?
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2017
  24. slane

    slane Forum Resident

    No, same fake-stereo on those two songs as the original PPM LP. The stereo Introducing is just a rare LP compared to the mono edition.
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  25. Tommyboy

    Tommyboy Senior Member

    New York
    It’s a collectible just like the first stereo pressing of the PPM album with the black and gold label.
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