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The Beatles Love Me Do Red Parlophone 45-R 4949

I am offering for sale here the very first Beatles single that was released on the Parlophone label in 1962.

Entitled 'Love Me Do', this is the single that helped to launch the Beatles to mega-stardom.

The reference number of this disc is 45-R 4949

I grade this disc as being VG to both sides

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This particular disc is not to be confused with later 'Red Parlophone' releases, this is a very rare first issue that is identifiable with the following characteristics:

  • There is no 'Made in Great Britain' displayed on either side of the label,
  • The displayed tax code is PT (later releases show the MT code)
  • The matrix numbers are: 7XCE 17144 - 1N (Side A) and 7XCE 17145 - 1N(Side B).  Later issues have the 7XCE 17217 - 1N and 7XCE 17218 - 1Nmatrix numbers.

The disc itself remains in very good condition. It is bright and glossy with only very light, minor surface marks.  It plays superbly with no sticks or jumps.

Side 'B' has the Lennon & McCartney track, 'P.S. I Love You'. Again, there are several minor surface marks however it looks superb and plays excellently.

'Love Me Do' is The Beatles' first single and released on 5 October 1962. When the single was originally released in the United Kingdom, it peaked at number seventeen.

"Love Me Do" was recorded by the Beatles on three different occasions with three different drummers:

  • It was first recorded on 6 June 1962 with Pete Best on drums at the EMI Studios at 3 Abbey Road in London. 
  • By 4 September, Best had been replaced with Ringo Starr. Producer George Martin did not approve of Best's drumming for studio work. It was the norm at that time to have a specialist studio drummer who knew the ways of studio work.
  • One week later, on 11 September, the Beatles returned to the same studio and they made a recording of "Love Me Do" with session drummer Andy White on drums as was the norm. Starr was relegated to playing tambourine. As the tambourine was not included on the 4 September recording, this is the easiest way to distinguish between the Starr and White recordings.

First issues of the single (this Red Parlophone release), however, did feature the Ringo Starr version (4th September recording), prompting Mark Lewisohn to later write: "Clearly, the 11 September version was not regarded as having been a significant improvement after all"