Wednesday 6/23/21 12pm ET: Artist Countdown: The Beatles Top 30 Hits

Between 1962 and 1970, the Beatles released 12 studio albums, 13 extended plays (EPs) and 22 singles. The band’s international discography is more complicated due to different versions of their albums sometimes being released in other countries, particularly during their early years on Capitol Records in North America. The Beatles’ discography was originally released on the vinyl format, with full-length long plays (LPs), shorter EPs and singles. Over the years, the collection has also been released on cassette, 8-track, compact disc (CD), on a USB flash drive in MP3 and 24-bit FLAC format, and on digital media streaming services. Although their output has come to include vault items and remixed mash-ups, the Beatles’ “core catalogue”, recorded between 1962 and 1970, comprises 213 songs. Additionally, they released five tracks that are different versions of previously released songs: “Love Me Do”, “Revolution”, “Get Back”, “Across the Universe” and “Let It Be”; two tracks in German: “Komm, Gib Mir Deine Hand” and “Sie Liebt Dich”; and two tracks that are duplicates of songs included on previous albums but also included on the album Yellow Submarine: “Yellow Submarine” and “All You Need Is Love”.

Most of the Beatles’ albums were released in both mono and stereo. Since mono record players were the most common at the time, the Beatles and their regular producer, George Martin, originally gave more time and attention to preparing the mono mixes of their recordings. The Beatles had involved themselves in creating only the mono mixes for the first four albums; the stereo mixes were prepared without their supervision. However, because by the late 1960s stereo record players became more common, their final two albums – Abbey Road and Let It Be – were mixed and released in stereo only.

From 1968, in both the UK and the US, starting with the single “Hey Jude” and the album The Beatles (better known as “the White Album”), new releases appeared on the Beatles’ own Apple record label. Parlophone and Capitol catalogue numbers continued to be used for contractual reasons.

The Beatles’ UK discography was first released on CD in 1987 and 1988. The first four albums were released in mono only, while the remaining albums were issued in stereo only. However, the sound of the digital transfers of the discs, produced by Martin using the best equipment available during the early days of the format, no longer meets the standards achievable with 21st-century techniques. Thus, from 2005 to 2009, the original recordings were remastered using the latest technology, and Apple and EMI released this version of the Beatles’ catalogue on CD on 9 September 2009 in mono and stereo.

With the first CD releases of their albums, the Beatles’ core catalogue was harmonised worldwide to encompass their original UK studio albums released in 1963–1970, the 1967 US Magical Mystery Tour LP and the Past Masters compilation, the latter two of which include the recordings released in 1962–1970 that are not present on the UK albums (mainly non-album singles and B-sides). Since then, other past releases have been reissued in digital formats and on vinyl. The catalogue is currently distributed by Universal Music Enterprises’ Calderstone Productions.

1Hey Jude1968
2Get Back1969
3All You Need Is Love1967
4Hello, Goodbye1967
5Let It Be1970
6I Feel Fine1964
8Paperback Writer1966
9Lady Madonna1968
10Ticket to Ride1965
11The Ballad of John and Yoko1969
13A Hard Day’s Night1964
14Can’t Buy Me Love1964
15Yellow Submarine1966
16I Want to Hold Your Hand1963
17Penny Lane1967
18She Loves You1963
19All My Loving1964
20Come Together1969
21We Can Work It Out1965
23Free as a Bird1995
24Twist and Shout1964
25The Long and Winding Road1970
26Please Please Me1963
27Real Love1996
28Rock and Roll Music1965
29Strawberry Fields Forever1967
30Love Me Do1962