According to the Beatles memorabilia dealer who sold the album; "This is easily the most important copy of any album i've ever offered to date. It is an original 1966 U.S. first state stereo Butcher cover 'Yesterday and Today' album that was the personal copy of Beatles manager and close friend to the band, Mr. Brian Epstein! (See how the seller got the record, as descibed in the eBay listing)"
Why's It Rare?
In 1966, The Beatles 'Butcher' (album) cover was used in an early release of "Yesterday and Today." The album immediately drew criticism due to the image of The Beatles being covered in raw-meat and baby-doll parts.
Things were so bad... When Capital Records first released the album, most stores would not carry it. Sears only carried the album for one-day before pulling it from their shelves.
This led to a majority of albums being recalled so a less controversial image (sticker) could be placed over the original album cover, making the original (first-state) versions extremely scarce.
Add the fact that this particular album was personally owned by The Beatles manager, Brian Epstein... and it adds whole new level of rarity.
Back in January of 2010, an unopened copy of the album (unopened in its original 1966 factory shrink wrap) sold on eBay for $26,099.
Rare Beatles items are also one of the hottest collectibles in the marketplace today, often fetching staggering amounts.
Video: The Beatles Butcher back-story, from a 2003 Antiques Roadshow appraisal
Auction Data & Statistics
The Beatles 'Butcher Album' received 37 bids from 18 bidders over the course of 7 days. The opening bid on October 22nd, was 99 cents. The final bid was $19,999. The eBay view-counter recorded over 1,800 visitors to the listing. The auction ended on Tuesday, December 17 (2013), at 2:00pm Pacific Standard Time.
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