Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Holy Grail Recording #6 - Summertime (1961)

In this series, In The Life Of...The Beatles presents the top 10 unreleased recordings of the Beatles.

In October 1960, Allan Williams arranged a recording session for Lu Walters (bass player from Rory Storm & the Hurricanes) at Akustik Studio in Hamburg, Germany. Backing him that day was the Beatles, including Rory Storm's drummer at the time, Ringo Starr. The cut that the Beatles played on, George Gershwin's "Summertime," may be the first recording ever to feature all four Beatles (John, Paul, George, and future Beatle Ringo; left out were Pete Best and Stuart Sutcliffe, who were also members of the Beatles at the time). When Allan Williams visited the Beatles during the making of Let It Be, he mentioned that he still had an acetate of this recording (unfortunately, he didn't bring it along while the cameras were rolling!). Unfortunately, Williams later lost the disc after leaving it behind it at a pub. It hasn't been seen since, making it perhaps the rarest Beatle recording known to exist. Whether it really still does exist, however, is anybody's guess.

This version by Gene Vincent may be how the Beatles approached the song:

Next installment: June 16

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