PLEASE PLEASE ME
|Please Please Me - Angus McBean|
When the matter came up of the album cover for the first album of the Beatles, their producer George Martin proposed to call the album Off The Beatle Track. A picture could be taken at the nearby London Zoo, he reckoned, in front of the home of the insects. Paul doodled a few sketches for a design with that title. George Martin advised the use of the theatrical photographer Angus McBean, a man he worked with in the past.
|Please Please Me - Paul McCartney's illustration. Even though it was John Lennon that had attended Art school, it was usually Paul McCartney who took an interest in the design for the Beatles record covers.|
|George Martin's album|
|USA - Introducing The Beatles album|
I only had my ordinary portrait lens, so to get the picture, I had to lie flat on my back in the entrance. I took some shots and I said, "That’ll do."
|Please Please Me - Photo session. Apple no longer has all the originals of these photos, as they were accidentally binned in 2003 by someone who was cleaning the offices at Apple.|
But not everybody was convinced. On March 5th, EMI staff photographer John Dove took publicity pictures of the Beatles in and round the EMI-house. On some of these also Dick James, George Martin and Brian Epstein can be spotted. Afterward he tried to make a suitable picture for the album-cover, with the Beatles fooling around with a parking meter at the nearby Montague Place and jumping of the steps of the EMI studio in Abbey Road.
|Unused idea for the first Beatles album|
|Fooling around with a parking meter at Montague Place|
|When The Beatles were on tour with Chris Montez and Tommy Roe, an advertisement for the Please Please Me album was featured in the tour programme. The cover is a mock up, as final typefaces had not been decided upon yet.|
|Detail from the programme page (above).|
Besides for the cover of the first album, different variations of the session are used for these covers:
- the EP The Beatles (N°1)
- the two compilations The Beatles 1962-1966 and The Beatles 1967-1970
|UK Beatles EP|
|Red album (1962-1966)|
The sleeve notes on the back of the album sleeve are written by Tony Barrow.
The cover of the first pressings was a laminated sleeve with a polythene lined inner sleeve on which an advert for "Emitex" cleaning cloths was printed.
|As proud as can be, the boys are showing off their fresh first album.|
|An equally proud record store owner/manager.|