THE BEATLES ‘THE DECCAGONE SESSIONS’ – Smilin’ Ears 7701 plus Joe Pope

Beatles DeccagoneBeatles Deccagone bBeatles Deccagone lblBeatles Deccagone red wr

Side 1: Searchin’ (03:03) / Like Dreamers Do (02:38) / Three Cool Cats (02:25) / Hello Little Girl (01:46) / How Do You Do It? (02:00) / White Power (Get Off)  (00:37) [January 1969 Get Back sessions; not listed on the sleeve] / Crying, Waiting, Hoping (02:06) [rec. 16 July 1963 for “Pop Go the Beatles # 8”, aired on 6 August 1963] / The Honeymoon Song  (01:43) [rec. on 16 July ’63 for PGTB # 8] Listed on the sleeve as “Bound By Love” / Nothin’ Shakin’ (But The Leaves On The Trees) (02:58) [rec. 10 July 1963 for “PGTB” # 6, aired on 23 July 1963. Listed on the sleeve as “There’s Nothing Shaking”]
Side 2: Love Of The Loved (01:56) / Memphis, Tennessee (02:22) / September In The Rain (02:04) / The Sheik Of Araby (01:50) / Revolution! (03:32) [from David Frost Show 4 September 1968] / Some Other Guy (02:04) [live at the Cavern, rec. 22 Aug 1962 for Granada TV “People and Places”] / So How Come (No One Loves Me) (02:02) [rec. 10 July 1963 for “PGTB # 6”, aired on 23 July 1963; Listed as “Everyone Wants Someone”] / I’m Gonna Sit Right Down And Cry (Over You) (02:00) [rec. 16 July 1963  for “PGTB # 8”, aired on 6 August 1963] / A Shot Of Rhythm And Blues (02:20) [rec. 1 Aug 1963 for “PGTB # 11”, aired on 27 August 1963]

Sources: Copying the first four Joe Pope’s  “Deccagone” colored PVC 45s (plus his very first 1976 release ‘How Do You Do It / Revolution!’) made for a good business sense. They were released between April and November 1977, which dates the LP to December 1977 at the earliest. Padded out with a few BBC recordings, copied from TMOQs Yellow Matter Custard to help suggest that all of these recordings might have come from the same recording sessions, when they were really recorded over 18 months apart. The inclusion of the excerpt from the ’69 Get Back sessions is quite puzzling. Perhaps, whoever compiled the master tape got it on there by accident or as an inside joke.

Matrix: S.E. 7804  Re-10-17  BeAtles A  /  S.E. 7804  BeAtles A  Re-10-17 



SFF mag adSSF31SSF32

Deccagone 45s

The story goes that Joe paid $5,000 for the tape containing the 15 Decca audition tracks. Had the tape professionally mastered and sold seven singles for $5 each.

Joe Pope 76Joe Pope in 1976

For almost a decade SFF defined Beatle fandom. We were the first to hold a convention… the first to offer… the Decca Auditions… We even had what amounted to the world premieres of “Magical Mystery Tour” in its uncut form and “The Beatles in Tokyo.” If you were an SFF subscriber you were among the first people in the world to hear the “Royal Command Variety Show” in sound quality so crystal clear you felt you were on the front row! The list goes on and on….and on!… ” [Joe Pope in a letter dated Sept. 26th, 1987]


After the last Deccagone 45 “To Know Him Is To Love Him / Besame Mucho” was released in February of 1979, it took another nine months for an LP compilation of all the single tracks plus track # 15 “Take Good Care Of My Baby” to appear.

Beatles Decca Tapes Circ

Circuit Records LK4438-1 – available with red, green, blank white and the labels shown above and of course, as a picture disc.

These tracks were sourced from the second copy of the tapes that originated from Brian Epstein’s personal ten-inch reels, which were sold after his death. “Unfortunately, some of the tracks suffered from tape dropouts. Circuit chose to release the recordings in fake stereo and with the audio running too fast.” [ – from the link given above]

Joe Pope released his own LP version in a blank white cover probably shortly after the Circuit LP came out, ca. December of 1979:

Beatles Deccagones red lblBeatles Deccagones red lbl 2Matrix:

CX369A      PTS
CX369B      PTS states: “Several songs are clipped and the recording is dry, without the reverb present on latter versions.”

Beatles Deccagones LP

An owner ‘enhanced’ copy, using the title of the Smilin’ Ears bootleg but correctly noting the source of the recordings.



BootleggingBootlegging 2

  1. John said:

    great post again.!!. I do like those old newspapers scans with bootleg- articles very much….!!
    Very clever marketing idea from the producers….

    • Thanks, John. It seems the one glaring error in the article is the price of the tape…. Clever – and annoying to have to buy all tracks on an LP all over again just to get that one missing track.

      • John said:

        that’s the only way to beat/boot the bootlegger……

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