Instead of Let It Be, which Beatles album would you like to see in documentary form?

It’s Beatlemania on the SDMB!

I am grateful for the film Let It Be, as it gives an insight into the creation of a Beatles album. Unfortunately, it captures them at their most uninspired (in my opinion). Let It Be is my least favorite Beatles record, due in a large part to Phil Spector’s production, which is thankfully absent from the film. It’s a slightly depressing documentary to watch - Paul is overbearing, John’s on heroin - but the rooftop concert makes up for many of its faults.

In my ideal world, there’d be a film documenting each of their albums, but for the purpose of discussion, let’s only choose one. Sgt. Pepper’s would be fun, with the Beatles at the height of their acid-fueled creativity, but the extensive overdubbing of the album might not be the most entertaining for most audiences. I’m voting for The White Album. Plenty of great songs to include, and we’d get to see the band performing together and also doing their solo songs. I think that watching Eric Clapton perform While My Guitar Gently Weeps with the band would be worth the admission alone.

How about you?

Edit: I’ve included Let It Be, for those who think it was the right choice.

Sgt Pepper. For the Beatles in their most colorful finery, for the crazy orchestral session for “A Day in the Life,” for the Indian music session for “Within You Without You,” to see them figuring out how to get all the bizarre sounds like the chopped-up calliope tapes on “Being for the Benefit of Mr Kite” or the grinding horns on “Good Morning Good Morning” or the audience on the title track…yeah, a real fly-on-the-wall treatment of Pepper would be awesome.

I am voting for Please Please Me. There should be a number of interesting things going on there: the band learning to work in the studio, Ringo getting integrated into the band, and how George Martin began to shape their sound and direction. Ther might not be all that much actual studio material, because albums were recorded pretty quickly in those days, and presumably all or most of the songs were from their live act and already well rehearsed. Even so, there would be scope for filling it out with other material about their early days, relationship with Brian, auditions etc (the famous failed audition for Decca would be interesting to see).

Anyway, I have always though that the Please Please Me album (as opposed to the song) is a hugely under appreciated gem, and (with the possible exception of A Hard Day’s Night) their best, most consistent album before Revolver. I suppose it gets overlooked because (for some stupid reason known only to record company execs) it was not issued in it original form in America, and the songs were, instead, scattered across a bunch of randomly thrown together LPs.

Although my vote goes to Please Please Me I cannot disagree with those who are voting for Sgt. Pepper’s. I am sure that would be hugely interesting too. (Although realism might call for a lot of shots of the boys totally tripped out, staring vacantly into space!:D).

That’s for sure. * Please Please Me* was recorded in a day!

I’d love to see Sgt. Pepper’s too. Still, my vote goes for The White Album, if only to witness the Helter Skelter session:

Rubber Soul. Aside from being my first Beatles album, it seems to mark the turning point between the more straightforward early albums and the complex stuff that marked their later work. It’d be interesting to see that development taking place.

I voted for **Revolver **for the same reason. Rubber Soul is on one side of the door, and Revolver on the other side, right when they stepped into psychedelia. As **LawMonkey **mentions, their songwriting has stepped up a notch in sophistication, but Revolver represents their first deep studio experimental phase, with backward-tracked guitar, vocals through a Revolving Leslie speaker, tape looping - reading Geoff Emerick’s Here, There and Everywhere, it sounded like a cool mad scientist’s lab…

…oh, and it’s my favorite.

It was a tough call between the two albums, especially since Revolver is probably my favorite too. I came down on the side of Rubber Soul because I felt as if the transition was mostly complete by the time Revolver came around; RS represents the first few steps into a larger world for the Fab Four.

Of course, the only real solution to this dilemma would’ve been a double-documentary. :smiley: