Capitol6000 wishes you the very best holidays and we take this opportunity to thank you for such a great year. We hope you will all stay tuned for the next year as we have even more ideas and projects coming ahead, and we are very eager to share them with you. We work very hard every day to bring you exclusive Canadian content, and hopefully, this year we will make your Canadian record collecting experience even more exciting with the release of our new Beatles books on the rise of Beatlemania in Canada, and the complete Canadian LP variations guide.
2012 has been extremely fun and motivating for us and we look forward to 2013. Until then, have some great holidays with your friends and family, and don't forget to share the love and the music!
Piers and Serge
(Note - this information updates The Beatles Canadian Discography Part 1 (page 11) and Part 3 (page 8)
All original 1963 copies of Capitol 72090 can be identified by the two different publishing credits on the A-side and B-side labels. All 1963 copies feature the publisher credit "Concertone" (eg without "Songs Inc.") on the A-side and the B-side publisher credit is listed as "Dick James Ltd.".
In early 1964, when the single was re-pressed for Beatlemania, the publishing credit was changed on both sides to "Concertone Songs Inc.".
Many thanks to Capitol6000 "avid" Frank Manley for this information and his EAGLE eye - well spotted !
Ravi Shankar, the sitar virtuoso who is known to have broken cultural barriers by introducing Indian music to the western world has died on December 11, 2012 at the age of 92 in a hospital near his home in San Diego. As per a statement from his family, Mr Shankar has had a fragile health for the last few years and was forced to undergo heart surgery last Thursday on December 6. The operation was a success, but the condition of his lungs made it too difficult for him to recover. Mr. Shankar passed away with his family by his side.
Among his children were two musician daughters, Anoushka Shankar (also a sitar player) with whom he played his last concert in California on November 4, and well famous jazz singer Norah Jones who has always preferred to "downplay her relationship with her father in the press", describing their relationship as loving, but distant.
For most of us, Ravi Shankar is known for his collaboration with The Beatles, and specifically George Harrison. But in reality, this historical cultural influence in pop music all started with the Byrds, who were recording an album in the same studio as Ravi Shankar, and overhearing his sound, wanted to incorporate it to theirs, which is apparently how George Harrison discovered his new musical awakening. From then on, George grew a strong interest in Indian music and culture. But the actual first Canadian Beatles LP to include the sound of the sitar was the Help soundtrack (Capitol (S)MAS 2386) from the summer of 1965. The sitar appears at the outset on the instrumental opening to the title song Help on side 1, as well as on the track "From Me To You Fantasy" on Side 1, and then more prominently on Side 2 with "Another Hard Day's Night", and of course the very Indian closing "Instrumental". All this was George Martin's music of course arranged by Ken Thorne.
Beatles fans who bought the Help album when it came out that summer were intrigued by the use of this new instrument (even though it was not played by a Beatle) and of course the sitar would be used to far greater effect on the Beatles own (mostly George) compositions featured on the subsequent albums Rubber Soul, Revolver and Sergeant Pepper. Ravi's influence on the Beatles discs beginning in 1965 should never be under-estimated." The song Norwegian Wood from the album Rubber Soul, became a clear symbol of the indian sound in pop music. It featured a clumsy but very efficient sitar track that changed popular music forever, and made it one of the most appreciated song of their career.
Soon after, George met with Ravi many times in the mid to late 1960s to practice and study the Sitar, and his interest in Indian culture even led the Beatles to visit India in 1968, resulting in them writing the amazing White Album, who, even though the album does not feature any Indian music, was almost entirely composed in the east. According Geoff Emerick, the Beatles sound engineer at the time, George was the shy Beatle who was in a way, living in the very strong shadows of John and Paul. Discovering and bringing Indian music to the Beatles' musical panorama gave him a lot of confidence, proving Harrison to be also be an exceptional song writer.
Many albums featuring the sitar master were issued in North America, and a few of them were even issued on the Beatles' very own Apple label and pressed here in Canada. Those records are:
The soundtrack for the film RAGA, Apple SWAO 3384
The Concert for Bangla Desh, Apple STCX 3385
The album "In Concert 1972" was also available in Canada but was most likely imported from the USA instead of being pressed here in Canada.
Finally, Shankar also issued a single on the Canadian Apple label, as Apple 1838, with the song "Joi Bangla"
Ravi also made two great albums with Yehudi Menuhin on the Angel label in Canada (late 1960s) called West Meets East, and many Beatles fans got introduced to World Music via these albums:
West Meets East - Angel S.36418
West Meets East (album 2) - Angel S.36026
(both albums were pressed in Canada by RCA in the late 1960s)
Ravi Shankar studied music in the late 1930s to complete his training in 1944 after which he dedicated his life to playing and composing Indian music. Only in 1956 did he started to tour Europe and America, raising awareness to the eastern culture and music. Praised by the music community and academy, his popularity grew exponentially once he started collaborating with the Beatles in the 1960s. His spiritual music was unanimously adopted by the love children of the hippie movement, and by 1970, Indian music was well integrated into the pop scene, both musically and spiritually. It is no surprise that Ravi Shankar has played famous festivals like Woodstock and Monterey during the late 60s.
Being treated like a rock star, Ravi toured America, and only a few days before his Woodstock concert, he stopped in Montreal to play at "Man And His World". Surprisingly for many, Mr Shankar did not like the Woodstock venue and soon after, decided to distance himself from the hippie community as he did not like the fact that kids mixed up drugs and Kamasutra to the Indian culture and spirituality of the music.
His ties to George Harrison has always stayed strong as they collaborated many times. In 1971, George invited Mr Shankar to perform at his benefit concert for Bangla Desh, the biggest benefit concert at the time with an audience of 40 000 people. Indian music and culture were a strong influence in George's life, and it was strongly underlined by being very present at the Concert in memory of Harrison on November 29, 2002, a concert where Ravi and his daughter Anoushka played many songs.
Ravi Shankar has not only been active in the field of music. Starting in 1986, he became a member of India's upper house of parliament, serving with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. Ravi Shankar was very appreciated as musician of course, but also as India's cultural ambassador. Regardless of his many prizes (three Grammys, the music award of the UNESCO International Music Council, the Polar Music Prize, and more), Ravi Shankar will be remembered by many as a fantastic musician, but also as a unique influence that changed the world of music, bringing together two very different cultures that shaped the the soundtracks of our very lives. No wonder he was made an Honorary Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 2001, for his "services to music."!
The Rubber Soul album was issued in both mono and stereo formats by Capitol Records of Canada Ltd. on Thursday, December 9th, 1965. Wow... that is now 47 years ago. Because the album was issued in 1965 for the annual holiday market back then we thought that it is timely to provide a short article about one interesting piece of Canadian "Rubber Soul" vinyl dating from March 1974. Many thanks to Canadian Beatles collector Randy Wolf for bringing this cool test pressing to our attention. But the best thing about this test pressing is that it's existence has solved another mystery: we now know the pressing company behind the "weird" green target Yesterday & Today album from 1968-1969 that was not pressed by RCA or Compo.
Randy Wolf is a Beatles collector in Canada and purchased a very cool white label test pressing of Rubber Soul in the late 1970s. Randy was lucky enough to find the record in a used record shop for the great price of $1.00. The album was priced that way because it had no jacket. Randy states that the date of "26/3/74" was written in pen on the Side 2 label. This indicates that the record was manufactured on March 26th., 1974. The white paper labels on both sides of the disc are the labels provided by the manufacturer "Keel Record Manufacturing Company Of Canada Ltd.".
The pressing ring on this album looks very similar to the Columbia records pressed in Canada at the time. The run-out (trail-off) areas show pn each side of the disc show the following etched into the vinyl:
Etched in A-side - ST-1-2424
Etched in B-side - ST-2-2442
Also stamped onto the vinyl record in tiny letters on both sides are the block letters " MASTERED BY CAPITOL". While the record is very interesting on its own, we need to go back nine years or more to see how Keel Records were to become involved in the pressing of Canadian Capitol Beatles albums.
A news item in the November 6th, 1965 edition of Billboard Magazine stated that Pickwick International had set up an operation in Canada and that they would be making their complete Pickwick 33 catalogue available for the first time. The operation would be based north-east of Toronto in Ajax, Ontario
From the outset, Keel Record Manufacturing Company Ltd, also located in Ajax, pressed records for Pickwick. Titles in the late 1965 and 1966 period included the following Design LPs which targeted a budget-conscious LP buyer who had no idea of what they were buying. This category sadly included parents who thought they were buying something cool for their kids (NOT):
DLP-181 - The Heart and Soul of Jan & Dean and Friends - Jan & Dean & Friends 
DLP-190 - Shindig - Various Artists 
DLP-191 - Hullabaloo - Various Artists 
DLP/SDLP-206 - Thunderball & Other Secret Agent Themes - Jazz All Stars 
DLP/SDLP-211 - Hullabaloo Au-Go-Go!!! - Various Artists 
DLP/SDLP-269 - Out of Sight! - Various Artists  (includes The Beachnuts with Lou Reed)
DLP/SDLP-272 - Groovy Greats - Various Artists 
Keel Record Manufacturing Ltd. was located at 460 Fairall Street in Ajax. Their details appeared in a late 1968 - early 1969 music industry survey of pressing plants which was the first ever survey of its type. Other pressing companies listed were RCA, Compo and Sparton. The Keel Records building is still there today.
Under a new 10-year arrangement signed in late 1966, Capitol of Canada started to distribute Pickwick/33 products in Canada and these included a line of budget priced Capitol albums. All of the Pickwick albums in the 1960s and early 1970s were pressed in Ajax, Ontario by Keel Record Manufacturing Ltd.
Starting in late 1966, Pickwick produced the following albums on their 3450 series in Canada. These budget albums carved up previously issued albums and were pressed in Ajax, Ontario by Keel and use Capitol black brackets labels with rainbow borders. The prefix PC indicated mono, PCS was used for stereo.
Capitol Pickwick Series PC/SPC-3450 - Frank Sinatra - The Nearness Of You (1966)
Capitol Pickwick Series PC/SPC-3451 - Fred Waring & His Pennsylvanians - The Romantic Sound Of (1967)
Capitol Pickwick Series SPC-3452 - Frank Sinatra - Try A Little Tenderness (1967, stereo only)
Capitol Pickwick Series SPC-3453 - TBD (this number may not have been used)
Capitol Pickwick Series SPC-3454 - Fred Waring & His Pennsylvanians - Some Enchanted Evening (1968, stereo only)
Capitol Pickwick Series SPC-3455 - Wayne Newton - Somewhere My Love (1968, stereo only)
Capitol Pickwick Series SPC-3456 - Frank Sinatra - Nevertheless I'm In Love With You(1968, stereo only)
Capitol Pickwick Series SPC-3457 - Frank Sinatra - Just One Of Those Things (1968, stereo only)
None of the jackets for the Pickwick Capitol Series LPs were manufactured by Capitol's normal jacket manufacturers. They used the suppliers that they had used for their Design albums starting in 1965.
The rainbow labels, however, are the same LP labels that were used by Compo and RCA during the period 1966-1969. They would have been shipped to Keel Records In Ajax by the same suppliers.
Capitol introduced the target logo in August 1969 as the replacement for the older "dome" logo. In the fall of 1969, Capitol began to look at their Beatles catalogue in Canada with a view to re-issuing albums in the back catalogue using the new Capitol logo. All LP labels were replaced with new green target labels. At this time in 1969, RCA, Compo, and Keel would have been supplied with the new label stock.
It is probable that Pickwick lobbied Capitol to issue a Beatles album on the Pickwick Capitol Series. Capitol would have declined the request in the end but perhaps Capitol had initially responded with Yesterday And Today as it had been their weakest selling Beatles album. Either way, it appears that Keel pressed up a number of green target copies of ST-2553 and even made a mistake on the catalogue number by dropping the stereophonic "S" and just using the T-2553 numbers on both Side 1 and Side 2 labels. They also used the mono etching numbers T-X-1-2553 and T-X-2-2553 rather than stereo ones. Oddly, they were sold in leftover Parr’s jackets and a special Pickwick jacket was never used. However, the fonts used are unique and that the feature that makes this a very collectible album.
It is possible that these Keel pressed albums were sold in Canada via the Columbia Record Club as the Capitol Of Canada Record Club ceased operations in 1970. Perhaps the Keel pressings of ST-2553 were intended for the Capitol Record Club and that fell through when the club was shut down. Or perhaps they were just an "odd lot" to test their capabilities for mainstream Capitol releases - and they failed the test. Either way, the Keel pressings are very rare indeed and only a handful of these discs have found their way into Beatles collections.
By early 1974, Capitol had started to look at in-sourcing the pressing of vinyl. In the early 1970s Capitol of Canada ended its outsourcing agreements with Compo (Cornwall) and RCA (Smiths Falls). They were planning to do the pressing themselves at their Mississauga facilities. By early 1974, Capitol had started to look at in-sourcing the pressing of vinyl in detail and one of the options presented to them was to have the pressing done by Keel records in Ajax. Keel would have presented a bid to Capitol.
So now we are back to Randy Wolf's test pressing of Rubber Soul. This stereo test pressing would be from that time in 1974 when Capitol was looking at new equipment etc to purchase. The stamper from Capitol would have been used to press the Rubber Soul test disc. That is why it says "Mastered By Capitol" in the run out area of Randy's disc.
Capitol could then evaluate the quality of the Keel pressing service via such a sample. They would have also tested their own in-house abilities to create a disc from a US master before the cut over to their own new equipment.
It took a couple of years before the process was complete, and they were pressing their own 45s in 1976 and LPs is 1977 at their own Mississauga facilities. It appears that they briefly contracted with Keel Records of Toronto in this process.
In my book "The Beatles Canadian Discography - Part 3" (Hemmingsen Publishing, 2011) on page 38, it was surmised that this green target pressing was made by Columbia Records of Canada because of the similar pressing ring. It now appears probable that the album was in fact manufactured by Keel Records sometime in the fall of 1969 or even as late as early 1970. As seen from the directory of the time, Columbia Records was not offering pressing services to other companies at this time.
The Keel Records pressings from the 1967-1970 period, especially the Frank Sinatra albums in the series, exhibit a distinct lack of overall quality compared to the RCA and Compo pressings of that time. It is easy to see that they made mistakes with label copy etc. as they were a smaller company.
It is possible that Keel pressed Beatles records for Capitol between 1974 and 1977. But we do know that they were pressing albums for Capitol to distribute as early as late 1966. Any further information would be appreciated.
Many thanks to Randy Wolf, Serge Pelletier, Gilles Valiquette, Brian Schofield, and Gilles Pepin for their great background information which was used in this article.