Strawberry Fields Forever / Penny Lane was number two in Record Retailer, but it was number one on Melody Maker, another very important publication in the UK. So, it was a number one anyway…
Although “Strawberry Fields Forever” c/w “Penny Lane” was reported at number one by “Melody Maker,” this does not reflect what comparative sales were like in the U.K. for the two singles. It was not even close. While the Beatles disc charted for 11 weeks, including five in the top five, and sold an impressive 500,000 by March 25, “Release Me” charted for an astounding 56 weeks, including six straight at number one, and sold over one million copies. The “Melody Maker” number one listing for the Beatles single appears to have been done out of sentiment and respect, not actual sales. Of course that does not mean that “Release Me” was a better single, it just sold more. It had mass appeal to all ages. Adults who weren’t attracted to the new Beatles disc were taken by “Release Me.”
See page 68 of “Beatles For Sale on Parlophone Records” for the “Record Retailer” review of the Beatles single and the opinion of “Record Mirror” as to why the Beatles didn’t top the charts with “Strawberry Fields Forever” and “Penny Lane.”
Penny Lane was number one in the U.S.A. (Billboard and Cashbox)and that’s all that matters!
I did good on the quiz.
Can’t wait for the new book!
The Beatles were so big that when one of their records went to #2 it was considered almost a ‘flop’, when for other acts this would be a winner! There would never another band as The Beatles! I’ll sure buy the new book!
Your books are #1 on my chart! I own them all. I will surely buy this one as well. Hoping someday you do a book or books on the Beatles solo beyond the Apple years. Thanks for your excellent research.
Hi, Bruce! If this book is anywhere near as good as your past works–and I’m sure it will be–I can’t wait to add it to my Complete Spizer Collection…books which I constantly refer to. You’re a madman, a completist and my Fave Beatle Chronicler.
All my best wishes,
Your books are fantastic, so much info and detail, it’s way more than just a discography. See you at the Chicago Fest.
Pete Nash of the British Beatles Fan Club pointed out that the 20th anniversary re-issue of “Love Me Do” peaked at number 4 on the October 30, 1982 “Record Retailer” chart. Page 9 of “Beatles For Sale on Parlophone Records” states that the re-issue single sold an impressive 165,000 copies, which was condierably more than it sold in the U.K. in the sixties!
Great questions, Bruce! I did well on answering the questions…So looking forward to receiving my book.
Hey Bruce, I have the collectors edition #32 of all of the other great books you have written.
I have ordered the new one as well. I can’t wait to read this one on the UK releases. I have
met you a few times at Beatlefest in NJ. Always friendly. Hope there will be something else
about THe Beatles to keep your creative juices flowing.
Be Well, John Reeder
I preordered this book awhile ago and like your other works Bruce, I am looking forward to another wealth of information!
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