On Air – Live at the BBC Volume 2

To begin with, this “On Air – Live at the BBC Volume 2” album is similar in format to the first “Live At The BBC” album from 1994. In 2013, they re-released “Live At The BBC” (after remastering it) together with this new album. In effect, that first release became Volume 1. So what we have now are the albums, Live At The BBC Volumes One & Two. Likewise, they are both double CDs. However, there are LP versions available which have 3 discs due to space restrictions on the vinyl.

Both albums contain material from BBC archives while The Beatles were in the studios at Broadcasting House in London or other BBC buildings. The Fab Four were regulars on programmes such as the “Saturday Club” and of course, “Pop Go The Beatles” in the early 1960s. You can also hear snippets from this “On Air – Live at the BBC Volume 2” by clicking the play button in the top right.

In Detail

Release Date: 11th November, 2013
Recorded: January, 1963 to May, 1966
Album Duration: 130:34
Record Label: Apple, Capitol, UMe
Genre: Merseybeat, rhythm and blues, rock and roll
Producer: Jeff Jones, Mike Heatley, Kevin Howlett


John Lennon: vocals, rhythm guitar, also the harmonica
Paul McCartney: vocals, guitar, also the bass guitar,
George Harrison: vocals, also the lead guitar
Ringo Starr: vocals, drums also the percussion

** This album also has various DJ Speech including Brian Matthews

On Air – Live at the BBC Volume 2

Disc One

Disc Two

01) And Here We Are Again (Speech)
02) Words Of Love
03) How About It, Gorgeous? (Speech)
04) Do You Want To Know A Secret
05) Lucille
06) Hey, Paul… (Speech)
07) Anna (Go To Him)
08) Hello! (Speech)
09) Please Please Me
10) Misery
11) I’m Talking About You
12) A Real Treat (Speech)
13) Boys
14) Absolutely Fab (Speech)
15) Chains
16) Ask Me Why
17) Till There Was You
18) Lend Me Your Comb
19) Lower 5E (Speech)
20) The Hippy Hippy Shake
21) Roll Over Beethoven
22) There’s A Place
23) Bumper Bundle (Speech)
24) PS I Love You
25) Please Mister Postman
26) Beautiful Dreamer
27) Devil In Her Heart
28) The 49 Weeks (Speech)
29) Sure To Fall (In Love With You)
30) Never Mind, Eh? (Speech)
31) Twist And Shout
32) Bye, Bye (speech)
33) John – Pop Profile (Speech)
34) George – Pop Profile (Speech)
01) I Saw Her Standing There
02) Glad All Over
03) Lift Lid Again (Speech)
04) I’ll Get You
05) She Loves You
06) Memphis, Tennessee
07) Happy Birthday Dear Saturday Club
08) Now Hush, Hush (Speech)
09) From Me To You
10) Money (That’s What I Want)
11) I Want To Hold Your Hand
12) Brian Bathtubes (Speech)
13) This Boy
14) If I Wasn’t In America (Speech)
15) I Got A Woman
16) Long Tall Sally
17) If I Fell
18) A Hard Job Writing Them (Speech)
19) And I Love Her
20) Oh, Can’t We? Yes We Can (Speech)
21) You Can’t Do That
22) Honey Don’t
23) I’ll Follow The Sun
24) Green With Black Shutters (Speech)
25) Kansas City/Hey-Hey-Hey-Hey!
26) That’s What We’re Here For (Speech)
27) I Feel Fine (studio outtake)
28) Paul – Pop Profile (Speech)
29) Ringo – Pop Profile (Speech)

Album Cover & Content

The cover for “On Air – Live at the BBC Volume 2” obviously shows The Beatles walking casually down the street.

Since these Beatles’ recordings come from the early sixties, they include songs from their first 4 LPs. These are obviously, “Please Please Me“, “With the Beatles“, “A Hard Day’s Night” and “Beatles for Sale“. Of course, many of the tracks are covers of some rock and roll classics which the Fab Four admired. For example, there are covers from Little Richard, Chuck Berry and Buddy Holly.

There are a couple of gems on this album because some tracks unique. In other words, they did not come out on any other album as they didn’t record them in the Abbey Road Studios.

On Air Live At The BBC Vol 2 - The Beatles Cavern Club and Forum
Just to clarify those two previously unreleased songs, “I’m Talking About You” and “Beautiful Dreamer”.

Speech Tracks

Since this album is a collection of recordings at the BBC, there are many speech snippets. Of course, with The Beatles being a witty bunch, we get some of their humour coming through as they chat with the shows’ presenters, Brian Matthew and Rodney Burke. In effect, being on the radio was an ideal opportunity to publicise themselves. But they also had a great interaction with the fans this way too. For instance, just how lucky would you be to have The Beatles read out your requests on the radio!

Chart Success

Beatlemaniacs would obviously not want to miss out on this album, especially if they have Volume One. So, a steady sale had to happen and it did. Although it has not sold as well as previous albums, “On Air – Live at the BBC Volume 2” did get quite high in the charts in some countries. For example, in the USA, Canada and Germany it reached the top ten. While in the UK, it reached number 12. However, in Australia and New Zealand, which have some of the most fanatical Beatles fans, it only reached number 28 and 31 respectively.

All in all, these sales are pretty good considering the recordings are not from a professional music recording studio. However, they are clean as a whistle and extremely good quality considering the circumstances. But, we must say that it offers only slightly more than its predecessor. While there’s no earthly reason why a completist Beatles fan wouldn’t want this disc, new collectors on a budget may want to skip this album. It obviously comes down to how much Beatles material you want to collect.

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About Bobby

I have been a Beatles fan since the early 1960s so I speak from my heart and soul. It was a pleasure to accept the role of Editor on The Beatles Forum when we left our old site. If you feel that something needs correcting with the information I provide, please contact me.

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