Come and Get It: The Best of Apple Records

Come and Get It: The Best of Apple Records

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Apple began life as a tax shelter for the Beatles, spiraled into a mad dream, collapsed into a mere record label, and then settled into its role as the trustees of the Beatles' legacy. All the myth of Apple lies in its crazy hazy days of 1968-1972, particularly the early years when the Apple empire allowed the Beatles to indulge every one of their whims, a practice

Overview

Apple began life as a tax shelter for the Beatles, spiraled into a mad dream, collapsed into a mere record label, and then settled into its role as the trustees of the Beatles' legacy. All the myth of Apple lies in its crazy hazy days of 1968-1972, particularly the early years when the Apple empire allowed the Beatles to indulge every one of their whims, a practice that soon brought them to the verge of bankruptcy. Come and Get It: The Best of Apple Records -- remarkably the first-ever compilation of Apple's roster and the flagship for Apple/EMI's exhaustive 2010 Apple reissues series -- captures the lunacy and fleeting brilliance of Apple Records, often making it seem like little more than the Fab Four's playground. And, in a way, that is precisely what it was. Every one of the early singles and signings was driven by a passion by one of the Beatles crew: Paul McCartney always knew "Those Were the Days" would be a smash, so he hand-picked TV talent show winner Mary Hopkin to sing his sure-fire hit; George Harrison was intimately involved with Jackie Lomax, giving him the White Album outtake "Sour Milk Sea" for his first single; even road manager Mal Evans had a pet project in the pop group the Iveys. These three acts were among the first four single releases from Apple, with the fourth being the McCartney composition "Thingumybob," a television theme performed by the Black Dyke Band, a traditional British brass band that was the earliest evidence that Apple may not be an operation with success in the forefront of its mind. "Those Were the Days" did indeed turn into the smash Macca knew it would be, but "Sour Milk Sea" -- a dense, brilliant, and soulful psychedelic rocker featuring Paul, George, and Ringo -- strangely stiffed, as did the Iveys' "Maybe Tomorrow," then Brute Force's silly, controversial psychedelic novelty "King of Fuh" never saw release, establishing a see-saw pattern of chart success Apple never really shook off, partially because the label was so undisciplined. Apple let its greatest talent signing, James Taylor, slip away before he could record a second album, but the label spent time to nurture the Iveys, changing their name to Badfinger, with McCartney giving them their breakthrough single, "Come and Get It," as the first step in turning them into one of the great power pop groups. Consistency was not the label's strong suit, and good intentions could pay off (witness Billy Preston's huge hit "That's the Way God Planned It") or they could backfire (Doris Troy's "Ain't That Cute" made no waves). A surprising amount of time was spent with Beatles covers, and not just unaired songs -- like when Ronnie Spector cut George's "Try Some Buy Some" -- but Trash stiffly playing "Golden Slumbers/Carry That Weight," the Hot Chocolate Band doing a bad rewritten reggae version of "Give Peace a Chance," and Preston cutting an early version of "My Sweet Lord." There were also detours that made little sense (the Cajun stomp of the Sundown Playboys' "Saturday Nite Special") and those that did (Radha Krishna Temple's "Govinda," which pretty much provided the blueprint for Kula Shaker's career). If this reads like a mess, well, it plays that way too, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. All the mythology surrounding the Beatles, particularly during this messy hazy era, inflates even the group's pedestrian moves, but Come and Get It deflates the myth, humanizing the Beatles by presenting their obsessions and quirks in their ragged glory. There are not many major discoveries here -- the pleasures in the not widely circulated are minor, but Chris Hodges' fuzzy-pop "We're on Our Way" and Bill Elliot's stomping John & Yoko-written protest "God Save Oz" are pleasures all the same -- so the nice thing is having a disc that puts everything, the good and the bad, in a tidy context, for it's the closest aural representation of the unfettered weirdness of Apple as we'll ever get.

Product Details

Release Date:
10/25/2010
Label:
Capitol
UPC:
5099964639727
catalogNumber:
46397

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Richard Hewson   Conductor
Geoffrey Brand   Conductor

Technical Credits

George Harrison   Composer,Producer
John Lennon   Composer,Producer
Paul McCartney   Composer,Producer
Billy Preston   Composer,Producer
James Taylor   Composer
Jackie Lomax   Arranger,Composer,Producer
Yoko Ono   Composer,Producer
Doris Troy   Composer
Tokens   Producer
Phil Spector   Producer
Peter Asher   Producer
John Barham   Orchestration
Tony Cox   Producer
Mal Evans   Arranger,Producer
Tom Evans   Composer
Pete Ham   Composer
Richard Hewson   Arranger,String Arrangements
Darrell Higginbotham   Composer
Gene Raskin   Composer
Lon & Derrek Van Eaton   Composer
Tony Visconti   Producer
Tony Wilson   Producer
Chris Hodge   Composer
Mukunda Das Adhikary   Arranger
Geoffrey Brand   Arranger
Brute Force   Composer
Traditional   Composer
Jonathan Clyde   Production Guidance
Garth Tweedale   Production Guidance
Andy Davis   Liner Notes
Jeff Jones   Production Guidance
Tony Mehan   Producer

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Come and Get It: The Best of Apple Records 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
JohnQ More than 1 year ago
While "Come and Get It: The Best of Apple Records" is not a great album, it is an entertaining one and it accurately reflects the mixed success of the Beatles' Apple project. This is a good source for a few wonderful songs without having to buy a bunch of albums. Other cuts on this album are not very good but are still key to understanding Apple Records. The most welcome tracks are those from Mary Hopkins (who has never had a decent hits collection), those from Badfinger as well as the Billy Preston tracks. While "Carolina In My Mind" by James Taylor is nice, I would have preferred it if they had chosen his "Something In the Way She Moves" as George Harrison so obviously borrowed from it to create his song "Something" (but that's probably to much of a tender issue for Apple to have dealt with here). Much of the remaining songs are fair to poor but heard as an album it is still a good experience and worth the listen and with 21 tracks, the album truly is a great cross-section of the Apple era. Apple has released the original albums reflected here so if you are interested in the full experience, those albums are the way to go. This album is more than enough for those of us who just want those key tracks.
poughkeepsiejohn More than 1 year ago
I'm in a real minority on this but I really believe that Apple Records was the downfall of The Beatles. Not Yoko. Not Linda. It was Apple. Think about it. Once The Fab Four started Apple, that's when their financial problems began. If there was no Apple, there would've been no financial problems. No Phil Spector producing and ruining "Let It Be". Maybe even no "Let It Be". And most of all, no Allan Klein managing the band. Maybe The Beatles could've stuck it out a little while longer. But of course, that didn't happen. What did happen was that Apple Records actually produced some fine music, even though most of the performers got a little help from each individual Beatle. Paul McCartney produced Mary Hopkin and wrote Badfinger's first single, "Come And Get It". John Lennon did benefit recordings like "God Save Us" by Bill Elliott & The Elastic Oz Band. George Harrison was all over the place producing and writing for performers like Ronnie Spector, Billy Preston and Jackie Lomax. And even Ringo Starr got into it, helping sign Chris Hedge, whose music was a cross between late 60's psychedelia and up-and-coming T. Rex. "Come And Get It: The Best Of Apple Records" features all these performers as well as a few surprises. For instance, there's an early version of Badfinger in the form of The Iveys ("Maybe Tomorrow"). There's a reggae band called The Hot Chocolate Band doing a fine version of Lennon's "Give Peace a Chance". McCartney went so far as to produce a jaunty, brass band, The Black Dyke Mills Band ("Thingumybob"). James Taylor is here, too, where he released his debut single, "Carolina In My Mind". There's even a Cajun band, The Sundown Playboys, whose "Saturday Nite Special" sounds almost like an early skiffle band. Most surprising, however, is a group called Brute Force doing a hilarious tune, "King of Fuh"---as in "The Fuh King", which, of course, didn't see much release at the time. And while Billy Preston's "That's The Way God Planned It" still sounds great after all these years, you should check out "Govinda" by The Radha Krishna Temple; with Harrison's Wagnerian production, the song has an amazing hypnotic quality that builds like a massive monk's chant. Although when you hear Ronnie Spector doing Harrison's "Try Some, Buy Some", gorgeous Phil Spector production and all, you get the feeling she'd be better off singing "Be My Baby". The first Apple single was Mary Hopkin's "Those Were The Days", which was actually based on a Russian tune from the 1920's. Somehow, you listen to this compilation (which doesn't have a single clunker) and you get the feeling that's what they should've called THIS album. Apple was a grand experiment that tried and failed (the label even had an experimental sub-label called Zapple). It almost resulted in The Beatles going broke. They did break up, of course. Yet, the music remains magnificent, bringing back a glorious time of love, peace, hope. Those really were the days.