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The Beatles Share Previously Unreleased Early Acoustic Take Of “While My Guitar Gently Weeps” [Listen]


Today, The Beatles have shared a previously unreleased acoustic take on beloved George Harrison-penned ballad “While My Guitar Gently Weeps”. The new release, premiered today by Rolling Stone, comes as part of the promotional lead-up to The Beatles’ forthcoming “Super Deluxe Edition” of their self-titled 1968 release, better known as the White Album. “While My Guitar Gently Weeps (Acoustic Version, Take 2) features just Harrison on guitar and Paul McCartney on harmonium, and gives a glimpse into the song’s exploratory refinement process ahead of its completion and release on the White Album.

The raw recording sees Harrison and the recording team trying to work out the kinks in the song. In the take, you can hear George ask for a mic for Paul. He also ends with a lyrical couplet that was eventually cut from the final track (“I look from the wings at the play you are staging / As I’m sitting here doing nothing but aging”).

This take was recorded on July 25th, 1968 at Abbey Road, but the band didn’t return to the song until three weeks later. As Rolling Stone explains, “In the meantime, they toiled over George’s ‘Not Guilty’—a song that went through 102 takes and still go axed, which sums up the torment of the five-month sessions. … ‘While My Guitar Gently Weeps’ wasn’t finished until September, when [George Harrison] brought in a special guest on lead guitar—his best friend Eric Clapton.”

You can listen to “While My Guitar Gently Weeps” (Acoustic Take 2) below:

The Beatles – “While My Guitar Gently Weeps” (Acoustic Take 2)

[Video: The Beatles/Rolling Stone]

According to the announcement of the White Album 50th-anniversary Super Deluxe Edition, the release features “a suite of lavishly presented ‘White Album’ packages including a super deluxe 7-disc set featuring 50 mostly previously unreleased recordings all newly mixed” by producer Giles Martin, son of George Martin, and engineer Sam Okell, “with 5.1 surround audio as well as the much-sought-after Esher Demos.” The reissue will also feature 27 early acoustic demos and 50 session takes—most of which have never been released.

The album will be available in super-deluxe seven-disc, deluxe four-LP, deluxe three-CD, and two-LP editions, all of which contain the new stereo audio mixes. Pre-orders are available now. Check out the full track listing below.

The Beatles – The White Album – 50th-Anniversary Super Deluxe Edition Box Set – Tracklisting

CD 1: 2018 Stereo Mix

Back in the U.S.S.R.
Dear Prudence
Glass Onion
Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da
Wild Honey Pie
The Continuing Story of Bungalow Bill
While My Guitar Gently Weeps
Happiness is a Warm Gun
Martha My Dear
I’m so tired
Blackbird
Piggies
Rocky Raccoon
Don’t Pass Me By
Why don’t we do it in the road?
I Will
Julia

CD 2: 2018 Stereo Mix

Birthday
Yer Blues
Mother Nature’s Son
Everybody’s Got Something to Hide
Except Me and My Monkey
Sexy Sadie
Helter Skelter
Long, Long, Long
Revolution I
Honey Pie
Savoy Truffle
Cry Baby Cry
Revolution 9
Good Night

CD 3: Esher Demos

Back in the U.S.S.R.
Dear Prudence
Glass Onion
Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da
The Continuing Story of Bungalow Bill
While My Guitar Gently Weeps
Happiness is a Warm Gun
I’m so tired
Blackbird
Piggies
Rocky Raccoon
Julia
Yer Blues
Mother Nature’s Son
Everybody’s Got Something to Hide
Except Me and My Monkey
Sexy Sadie
Revolution
Honey Pie
Cry Baby Cry
Sour Milk Sea
Junk
Child of Nature
Circles
Mean Mr. Mustard
Polythene Pam
Not Guilty
What’s the New Mary Jane

CD 4: Sessions

Revolution I (Take 18)
A Beginning (Take 4) / Don’t Pass Me By (Take 7)
Blackbird (Take 28)
Everybody’s Got Something to Hide
Except Me and My Monkey (Unnumbered rehearsal)
Good Night (Unnumbered rehearsal)
Good Night (Take 10 with a guitar part from Take 5)
Good Night (Take 22)
Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da (Take 3)
Revolution (Unnumbered rehearsal)
Revolution (Take 14 – Instrumental backing track)
Cry Baby Cry (Unnumbered rehearsal)
Helter Skelter (First version – Take 2)

CD 5: Sessions

Sexy Sadie (Take 3)
While My Guitar Gently Weeps (Acoustic version – Take 2)
Hey Jude (Take 1)
St. Louis Blues (Studio jam)
Not Guilty (Take 102)
Mother Nature’s Son (Take 15)
Yer Blues (Take 5 with guide vocal)
What’s the New Mary Jane (Take 1)
Rocky Raccoon (Take 8)
Back in the U.S.S.R. (Take 5 – Instrumental backing track)
Dear Prudence (Vocal, guitar & drums)
Let It Be (Unnumbered rehearsal)
While My Guitar Gently Weeps (Third version – Take 27)
(You’re so Square) Baby, I Don’t Care (Studio jam)
Helter Skelter (Second version – Take 17)
Glass Onion (Take 10)

CD 6: Sessions

I Will (Take 13)
Blue Moon (Studio jam)
I Will (Take 29)
Step Inside Love (Studio jam)
Los Paranoias (Studio jam)
Can You Take Me Back? (Take 1)
Birthday (Take 2 – Instrumental backing track)
Piggies (Take 12 – Instrumental backing track)
Happiness is a Warm Gun (Take 19)
Honey Pie (Instrumental backing track)
Savoy Truffle (Instrumental backing track)
Martha My Dear (Without brass and strings)
Long, Long, Long (Take 44)
I’m so tired (Take 7)
I’m so tired (Take 14)
The Continuing Story of Bungalow Bill (Take 2)
Why don’t we do it in the road? (Take 5)
Julia (Two rehearsals)
The Inner Light (Take 6 – Instrumental backing track)
Lady Madonna (Take 2 – Piano and drums)
Lady Madonna (Backing vocals from take 3)
Across the Universe (Take 6)

Blu-ray

Audio Features:
: PCM Stereo (2018 Stereo Mix)
: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 (2018)
: Dolby True HD 5.1 (2018)
: Mono (2018 Direct Transfer of ‘The White Album’ Original Mono Mix)

View Track Listing

[H/T Rolling Stone]