Collector’s Corner: How to value ‘Introducing The Beatles’

One of the most dreaded e-mails a Beatles dealer or expert can receive goes something like this: “I just got my mom’s copy of Introducing The Beatles that she purchased back when she was a kid. What’s it worth?”

Of course, there is no simple way to answer such a question. Before determining the value, you might have to go through a dozen or more questions. Information, prices and images of Introducing The Beatles are spread over four pages in Perry Cox & Frank Daniels’ Price Guide for the Beatles American Records.

First, you must determine whether or not the record is counterfeit. Does “The Beatles” appear above or below the center hole on the label? If the group’s name is below the center hole, the record is a fake, most likely pressed in the ’70s. There are other things about these records that indicate they were not pressed in 1964, such as improper trail-off area markings and thin vinyl. But, there is no need to go any further once you determine that “The Beatles” is below the center hole.

Because some counterfeits have the group’s name above the center hole, additional questions need to be asked before you conclude that the record is legitimate. If the label has a colorband, does it contain the color green? If the colorband is missing the color green and has a jagged line between red and purple, the record is a fake. If the label is black without a colorband, does it have a large white VJ brackets logo? If yes, the record is a fake.

If the record is fake, chances are the cover is too. But, because covers and discs can get mixed up over the years, one should also test the cover. Does the cover have a blurry image of the group? If yes, then the cover is a fake, probably from the ’60s. Does the cover have a brown border ? If yes, then the cover is bogus.

Unfortunately, most counterfeit covers closely resemble the real thing. This is particularly true of stereo Version One covers that have the song titles “Love Me Do” and “P.S. I Love You” on the back. Legitimate Version One stereo column back covers are extremely rare. There are two tests to spot the bogus covers.

The “flap test” requires inspection of the inside of the cardboard jacket. Does the cover have either no flaps, ½” flaps at the top and bottom or a ¼” flap only at the bottom? If so, the cover is a fake. Legitimate Version One stereo covers have a ¼” flap at both the top and the bottom.

The flap test is not an absolute rule for all covers. Legitimate Version One mono covers without flaps have been found with the later Version One mono pressings with the brackets logo (more on that later). In addition, there are some legitimate Version Two mono covers with no flaps.

The “Honey test” requires the inspection of the back cover. Many counterfeit covers have back slicks with the same imperfections. The most noticeable flaw appears in the word HONEY in the song “A Taste Of Honey.” Are the letters H and the E missing ink in their upper left parts? If so, the cover is a fake. If not, the cover may or may not be legitimate. While the “Honey test” does not always work, it is often useful in weeding out albums still in the shrink wrap.


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11 thoughts on “Collector’s Corner: How to value ‘Introducing The Beatles’

  1. Hi
    I am a private collector with an extensive Beatles collection and Yes , I too have a questionable copy of Introducing the Beatles.
    My copy has all the right printing except that it says Sterophonic
    and the cover has a pinkishness to the printing. Also on the record itself the cover and the label on the vinyl say the first song on side two is PS I love You but when you play the record it plays Please,Please me. I am assuming that the record is a fake but … it would be a pleasent surprise if it was some VeeJay factory error or something like that.

  2. I also have a Beatles album in the trail off urj and 63-6-03 is etched does this help to determine if it is real or counterfeit

  3. Would be great to see photos of what these “particulars” look like. I have the Stereo Introducing the Beatles and I can’t figure out if I’m understand the “language” — if I had a photo I’d be more confident.


  4. I have an authentic Introducing the Beatles! My mom purchased for me in1964; I wanted Meet the Beatles, but she picked up the wrong album. It has the two songs that were removed because of copyright issues: PS I Love You and Love Me Do, I believe. The cover and record are worn but not beat up. It passed the other fake/real clues. Besides, it has been in my possession since mom bought it just when the Beatles did their first American tour.

    Any clues to its value and who might like to purchase it?

  5. in have a introducing the beatles, last song side 1 ask me why,first song side 2 please please me, last song twist and shout.sup with that

  6. My brother bought the first Beatles album, Introducing The Beatles. Never Opened it up. Saved it. Pretty smart for a teen to think ahead. He’s gone now and left it for my sister & I. Need advice how to sell . Any advice on the best way to handle this?

  7. Hello all. I own an Introducing the Beatles Version 1, mono, with the brackets logo and column back song listing, in VG condition. I’m not looking to sell it, but am curious of the current value. Any thoughts ?

  8. My take after a few years of collecting from flea markets and private sellers in the real world –

    On a spectrum of VG to NM- copies

    Introducing The Beatles Mono Version 1 (w/ PS I Love You and Love Me Do): 250.00 – 600.00
    Introducing The Beatles Mono Version 2 (w/ Please Please Me and Ask Me Why): 30.00 – 200.00

    Introducing The Beatles Stereo Version 2: 300.00 – 600.00
    Introducing The Beatles Stereo Version 1 (Ad Back): 6,000 – 15,000
    Introducing The Beatles Stereo Version 1 (Column Back): 10,000 – 20,000

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