Already in 1963 musicians covered Beatles songs. Much of these early covers where released in the language of these musicians own country.
And of course, a lot of these releases had to do with the commercial popularity of the Beatles songs.
But musicians also saw the melodical quality. UK pianist Russ Conway released the single 'Liverpool Pops' with on both sides a poppy instrumental medley of Liverpool songs. Four of the songs are Beatles songs.
In 1964 the Beatles released their LP A hard day's night.
In the US the LP was released as Original Sound Track and in this format it has some poppy orchestral Beatles Cover Versions. All performed by the George Martin Orchestra.
The George Martin Orchestra released also an LP with all tracks of A hard day's night. Later followed by other full Beatles song material.
Besides the George Martin Orchestra, 1964 was the start of many other orchestral Beatles Covers.
In the US the popular Hollyridge Strings Orchestra released their first Beatles Cover LP. It was the start of an extending series.
Lots of musicians made use of the commercial succes of Beatles songs in search of more personal publicity.
In 1964 humor and parody on Beatles songs and haircuts made their entrance. The Dutch comedy duo 'The Mounties' published their own parody of a Beatles song. The song was called 'The Mountel Beatles' and has a Dutch nonsens text about hair and the Beatles. The melody is from She Loves You (The Mountels Yeah Yeah Yeah!).
In 1965 Peter Sellers, who worked with George Martin since before the Beatles, released his first Beatles parody in theatrical style of the songs A Hard Day's Night and Help!. Both very funny. This was followed by other parodies like She Loves You in different and amazing versions.
In the Netherlands a type of covers later called 'Kievers' started. Kievers are based on the original melody but mostly the texts are humoristic or totaly different from the original...
1964 meant also the first releases of Cover Versions in genres like Jazz and Latin. Just as Beatles songs on instruments
like flamenco guitar, harmonica, piano and Hammondorgan.
This all added a lot to the depth and value of Beatles songs.
Beatlemania was also formed by all these artists with their own interpretations.
1964 is also the start of weird Cover Versions like the Chipmunks versions. In 1983 these weird versions were followed up by The Beatle Barkers (Woofers and Tweeters). Dogs, cats, sheep, birds. These 'animals' 'sung' Beatles songs. Weird but possible.
1965 saw the release of the most covered popsong. In the UK Yesterday was just a song on the LP Help!,
in the US and several European countries it was released as a single.
In the same year Yesterday was covered in very different styles. James Last had his poppy orchestration, Marianne Faithfull had a hit with her version and Mary Wells created a soul (Motown) version.
In The Netherlands Jazz singer Rita Reys (and the Pim Jacobs Combo) released a very Jazzy version and in Spain Emi Bonilla released his translatation of the song in the Spanish flamenco style.
In 1966 more translations followed. In The Netherlands Ria Valk released Beste Kees, a parody text about a missing dog, or cat, called Kees. And comedian / actor Rijk de Gooyer released Yesterday with a humoristic Dutch text about a man who meets a woman in a bar.
In 1965 the orchestrated cover versions of Beatles songs got more classical.
Eine Kleine Beatlemusic, Help... Mozart and Cracker Suite (music for a ballet) by Arthur Wilkinson did their entry.
More items with classical covers
The Arthur Wilkinson ballet interpretations inspired the musical leaders of the Band of the Irish Guards to ask Wilkinson to arrange Beatles songs for them. The result became a very impressive Beatles Cover Songs LP.
In 1967 the classical interpretations went on and well known mezzo-soprano Cathy Berberian added operatic style to cover versions of songs by the Beatles to the wide range of Beatles covers.
Already starting in 1963 several Beatles songs that were not officially recorded by The Beatles were given away to other artists.
Beatles manager Brian Epstein was also manager of some other local artists.
At first they were the Liverpool Fourmost, the London Rolling Stones and the local Billy Kramer & the Dakotas. Liverpool singer Cilla Black followed in 1964 just as Peter & Gorden (Peter Asher & Gordon Waller). Peter Asher was the brother of Jane Asher who was at that time Paul McCartney's girlfriend.
Several of these given away songs became hits and some of them became even big hits. Of course the composer Brand Name 'Lennon & McCartney' seemed to help with this success.
To prove that it was not only the composer name Lennon-McCartney that was important, Paul McCartney gave his song Woman to Peter & Gordon under the pseudonym Bernard Webb (and in the US: A. Smith).
Woman became a hit.
All new cover versions keep Beatles songs and Beatles history alive for new generations!!