Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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Across the Universe

First released by The Beatles (1968).
Hit album version by The Beatles (1969).

From the wiki: “‘Across the Universe’ was written by John Lennon, and credited to Lennon–McCartney. The song first appeared on the various artists’ charity compilation album No One’s Gonna Change Our World, in December 1969, and later, in different form, on Let It Be, the Beatle’s final released album.

“The version from Let It Be used the same basic track as the 1968 original but with major differences arising from Phil Spector’s arrival as the album producer. In the spring of 1970, Spector was brought in to salvage the Get Back sessions, including ‘Universe’. Spector stripped some of the original overdubs, slowed it down and, in his famous ‘wall of sound’ manner, added numerous layers of strings, brass, percussion and a vocal choir, giving the song a whole new feel.

“The 1968 version was considered for release as a Beatles’ single but was instead donated to the No One’s Gonna Change Our World album, a benefit for the World Wildlife Fund. Instead, ‘Lady Madonna’ became their next 45.”

The Beatles, “Across the Universe” (1969):

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