“Beautiful Dreamer” is cover song by The Beatles and is on their 2013 album, “On Air – Live At The BBC Volume 2”.
Release Date: 11th November, 2013
Recorded: 22nd January, 1963
Studio: Playhouse Theatre, London
BBC Show: Saturday Club
Track duration: 1:46
Genre: Rock and roll, Merseybeat
Song Originally Published: March, 1864 (reworked version – 1962)
Songwriter: Stephen Foster (around 1862) also rewritten in 1962 by Gerry Goffin and Jack Keller
Producer: Terry Henebery
Written by Stephen Foster (1826-1864), “Beautiful Dreamer” is a parlour song telling of a lover who serenading someone. But, it’s not clear whether that person is dead or alive. Be that as it may, Gerry Goffin and Jack Keller rewrote the song. Their doo-wop version was for Tony Orlando who then released it as a single in 1962 (1963 in the UK). However, the single with the B-side being, “The Loneliest”, wasn’t a success.
The Beatles managed to get hold of a copy and sang that version as part of their live act, including in the Cavern Club. The Fab Four would often cover songs from other artists in their early days, of course. In fact, they specialised in covering the more obscure songs and B-sides coming over the pond from America. Incidentally, Rory Storm and The Hurricanes also sang the song in their live act too.
In order for The Beatles to gain the benefit of free publicity, the band would often perform for BBC Radio shows. In this case, they recorded “Beautiful Dreamer” at London’s Playhouse Theatre. This was for the BBC radio show “The Saturday Club”, a programme hosted by Brian Matthew airing on 26 January 1963.
Although the song is not true hi-fi quality, it still is worth a spin. Indeed, it shows just why the Fab Four became a household name and why Beatlemania was always going to happen.
Because it was a BBC recording, it is now available on the band’s 2013 album, “On Air – Live At The BBC Volume 2”. On the album it sits on disc one, after track 25 “Please Mr. Postman” and before “Devil in Her Heart“. Those are also BBC recordings.