For Sale was released at the height of Beatlemania, the studio sessions squeezed into whatever spare time was available in the high speed, non-stop carousel of tours, media commitments and hysterical fandom that constituted their lives. Hardly surprisingly, the strain was beginning to show. It can be seen on the weary-eyed cover shot, in the down-beat subject matter (how about No Reply, I’m A Loser and Baby’s In Black for the titles of an opening salvo?) and the inclusion of no fewer than seven covers -the most on any of their albums.
Didn’t mean that the remaining eight originals were any less attractive to outside acts, mind.
So arch proglodytes Yes stretch out Every Little Thing to nigh-on six minutes, Ruben Blades sprinkles salsa flavourings over Baby’s In Black and to Lennon’s delight, his favourite mother-substitute figure, Alma Cogan, chose to update her repertoire by taking a shot at Eight Days A Week.
Of the alternatives to the non-original material, The Hollies deliver a straight reading of Mr Moonlight (unlike the Fabs themselves who’s own version see-saws between the deliberately kitsch and the demented), Little Richard’s Hey, Hey, Hey, Hey is fuzzed up beyond all recognition by The Jim Jones Review, and if you feel the series so far has been a little light on free-improvised-country-and-western-be-bop, Eugene Chadbourne’s Honey Don’t plugs that gap.
Finally, the strange case of George’s showcase Everybody’s Trying To Be My Baby. The sleeve gives the composer’s credit to Carl Perkins, but it rightly belongs to Rex Griffin. His original is presented here in its full 1936 glory.
1 Paul Nero’s Blue Sounds-No Reply
2 Marianne Faithful-I’m A Loser
3 Ruben Blades-Baby’s In Black
4 Chuck Berry-Rock & Roll Music
5 Chet Atkins-I’ll Follow The Sun
6 The Hollies-Mr Moonlight
7 Jack Parnell-Kansas City
8 The Jim Jones Revue-Hey Hey Hey Hey
9 Alma Cogen-Eight Days A Week
10 Patti Smith-Words Of Love
11 Eugene Chadbourne-Honey Don’t
12 Yes-Every Little Thing
13 Rosanne Cash-I Don’t Want To Spoil The Party
14 The Fantastic Dee-Jays-What You’re Doing
15 Rex Griffin-Everbody’s Trying To Be My Baby