(6) LIVERPOOL 1963-1968 (1983, See For Miles CM 118) A very good 20-track compilation of lesser-known EMI tracks – for example, Cilla Black is represented by “Abyssinian Secret” and the Swinging Blue Jeans by “Sandy”. There are plenty of gems in this collection including the only track to be produced by Brian Epstein (“America” by Rory Storm) and Beryl Marsden’s “Break-a-way”. Several acts were featured in the film, “Ferry Cross The Mersey” and there is also John Lennon’s peculiar single as Musketeer Gripweed and the Third Troop, “How I Won The War”. The rights for the John Lennon track were no longer available in 1994 when the album was transferred to CD (SEECD 370) and it was replaced by the Swinging Blue Jeans’ “You’ve Got Love”, which had not previously been released in the UK.
(7) MERSEY BEAT (1983, Parlophone PCSP 1783293) This double-album is the most definitive Merseybeat album to date, but only 37 of compiler Bill Harry’s original list of 40 tracks were used and, in particular, Kingsize Taylor is missing. This was the first compilation album to feature the Beatles (“She Loves You”, “I Want To Hold Your Hand”) and among the lesser-known gems are “Tears On My Pillow” (Dimensions), “Magic Potion” (Kubas) and “Honey Don’t”(R&B Inc). The dreaded “Who Told You” makes another appearance. The album was only licensed for UK release and has not appeared on CD.
(8) BEAT IM STAR-CLUB (1983, Star-Club Records, Germany 6685018) Several Liverpool beat groups recorded for Star-Club Records while they were in Germany but there is no compilation solely of the Merseyside acts. This 24-track double-album does, however, include the Searchers, Howie Casey, Tony Sheridan with the Beatles, Lee Curtis, the Remo Four and Ian and the Zodiacs. Great version of “Slow Down” by Kingsize Taylor and the Dominoes and good to hear Mike Hart leading the Roadrunners through Ray Charles’ “Mary Ann”. The Liver Birds only ever recorded for Star-Club Records.
(9) LIVERPOOL 1963-1964 (1983, See For Miles CM 125) The success of “Liverpool 1963-1968″ prompted a second volume, this time from the Decca archives. Kingsize Taylor is again missing but the Mojos, Lee Curtis, the Dennisons, Beryl Marsden and Pete Best are here. The album mixes live tracks with studio recordings and some obscure Decca tracks have been chosen: what other compilation includes three tracks from Chick Graham and the Coasters? This has not been reissued on CD but the humorous cover featuring four actual covers was used for the CD release of the first volume.
(10) ON THE SCENE AT THE CAVERN (1984, EMI Special Products) This 16-track EMI album was compiled for the re-opening of the Cavern and was only available from the club. It was the second compilation album to feature the Beatles – they perform all eight tracks on Side 2, so they keep their distance from the other acts. Side 1 featured hits from Billy J.Kramer, the Fourmost, Gerry and the Pacemakers, Cilla Black and the Swinging Blue Jeans. Sleeve notes are from Tony Barrow, who put together a new version of his souvenir publication, also called “On The Scene At The Cavern”, to accompany the release. As part of its 40th anniversary celebrations, the Cavern is currently preparing a three-CD set of bands who played at the club.