I have heard the term ‘deep cuts’ to refer to album tracks. I always assumed it meant songs not good enough (or commecial enough) to be released as singles. I also thought this was the definition of ‘b sides’, but according to a few sites online ‘b sides’ are tracks that where not on an album. I have several singles where the ‘b side’ track was part of the same album as the single so it would seem that definition is not always true.
So – What is the definition of ‘deep cut(s)’?
Note – Not sure if this belongs here or cafe society, but I assume there is a factual answer so I will put it here. I am sure a mod can move it if deemed necessary.
“B sides” are the flip sides of a single. “Deep cuts” are album tracks that otherwise wouldn’t get commercial airplay. The two are not mutually exclusive, but for the most part, a “B side” is more commercial than a “deep cut.” I’ve always associated deep cuts with album-oriented FM stations, who cared more about music and less about commercialism.
I would say most B-sides are not from the album, although sometimes they do come from the B side of the LP. Usually they are different versions, unreleased songs, and sometimes live versions. Many times, groups will release B-sides and other rare tracks as an album later. I have quite a few of these, and they often contain some gems.
These are rare tracks because singles have been always relatively harder to get than LPs. A deep cut, however obscure, is not usually rare, because one can always stroll into a music store and buy the Pearl Jam album “Ten” for the song “Jeremy” and still get the deep cut “Garden.” But you may have more difficulty finding the song “Yellow Ledbetter,” the B-side of the “Jeremy” single. So they released the 2 disc “Lost Dogs” B-sides and rarities compilation, containing that track…
Silenus sums this up very well. A “Deep Cut” can also be a track that isn’t heard on the radio very much anymore, ie “5:15” off of The Who’s Quadrophenia. Or it can just be any song on an album that is not the released single. You generally hear it mentioned on classic rock or album oriented rock stations.