George, John, Ringo and Paul.
Brian Epstein and George Martin deserve Mention here too.
1994 – It’s reported that Paul, George, and Ringo are working on a new song for inclusion in the Anthology boxed set. They do it for John as much as for the fans.
To accompany the Anthology series, three double music albums were released, each containing two CDs or three vinyl discs of never-before-released Beatles material (although many of the tracks had appeared on bootleg vinyl and CD for many years prior).
Two days after the first television special in the series had aired, Anthology 1 was released to stores, and included music recorded by The Quarrymen, the famous Decca Records audition tapes, and various out-takes and demos from the band’s first four albums. It also included the song “Lend Me Your Comb”, omitted from the collection ‘Live at the BBC’, released the previous year (1994). The song “Free as a Bird” was included at the very start. 450,000 copies of Anthology 1 were sold in its first day of release, the most sales for an album in a single day ever. The Beatles’ original drummer Pete Best, fired by the band in 1962 before they hit it big, received his first substantial Beatles royalties from this album, for the inclusion of early tracks on which he played.
On March 17, 1996, Anthology 2 was released. The second collection presented out-takes and demos from the Beatles’ sessions for Help!, Rubber Soul, Revolver, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, and Magical Mystery Tour. These included selected early demos and takes for Lennon’s “Strawberry Fields Forever”, previously available only to bootleg collectors. The new song “Real Love” — which, like “Free as a Bird”, was based on an unfinished Lennon recording — was also included in the two-CD collection.
On October 28, 1996, Anthology 3 was released. The third collection featured out-takes and demos from The White Album, Abbey Road, and Let It Be.
Collage of the three covers of The Beatles Anthology, created by Klaus Voormann.
The three album covers, when laid side-by-side, become one long painted collage of various peeling posters and album covers representing the different stages of The Beatles’ career. This was the work of Klaus Voormann, who also created the album cover for Revolver in 1966. The Anthology covers required Voormann to recreate elements of his cover for Revolver within the collage. During the music video for “Free as a Bird”, the Anthology collage appears as posters on a shop window as the camera pans quickly across the street. The design also adorned the VHS, laserdisk and DVD releases, again to be properly encountered by laying the cases side-by-side. Upon the release of Anthology 3, HMV stores made available a cardboard sleeve designed to hold all three CD volumes of which each side of the sleeve make up half of the collage.