You find a rarer than this on eBay: a UK White Album mono with the serial number #0000005. Ahhh, if money were no object. This would be tops on my list.
Here’s a description from the item’s ebay listing.
‘The Beatles’ (more commonly known as ‘The White Album’ ) was released exactly 40 years ago on 22nd November 1968. Widely held to be one of the most influential albums of all-time, it was recently given the number one position in the ‘200 Rarest Records of All Time’ by ‘Record Collector’ magazine. The two-record set, housed in a plain white cover was designed by Richard Hamilton and each carried its own unique number stamped on the front cover. Copies numbered 0000001 to 0000004 were originally given to the members of The Beatles themselves and as yet, none of these first four numbers have emerged onto the market.
This auction for mono No.0000005 is the lowest number to emerge to date and represents a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to own the lowest numbered mono copy which may ever be offered for sale.
The Beatles reportedly were given the first four numbered copies. So how did the album get in someone else’s hands in the first place? This text, from the album’s history on the page, may or may not explain it:
“Some years ago, this album was taken into the collectors shop named ‘Vinyl Revival Records’ in Newbury, Berkshire, England by a musician (they did not disclose who) who had visited John in the flat that he shared with Yoko in late 1968 that was owned by Ringo at 34 Montague Square, Marylebone, London W.1. The musician saw a pile of White Albums on a table and asked for one. John readily agreed, but said ‘Don’t take No. 1. I want that.’ Instead he took No. 5′.” The album then passed into the hands of Beatles specialist dealer ‘Good Humour’ who then sold it to its current owner who has now commissioned me to sell it on his behalf.
The album looks in very very good condition for its age.
Here’s the complete history of the album as taken from the page:
The History of No.0000005
Some years ago, this album was taken into the collectors shop named ‘Vinyl Revival Records’ in Newbury, Berkshire, England by a musician (they did not disclose who) who had visited John in the flat that he shared with Yoko in late 1968 (that was owned by Ringo) at 34 Montague Square, Marylebone, London W.1. The musician saw a pile of White Albums on a table and asked for one. John readily agreed, but said ‘Don’t take No.1 – I want that’. Instead he took No. 5′.
The album then passed into the hands of Beatles specialist dealer ‘Good Humour’ who then sold it to its current owner who has now commissioned me to sell it on his behalf.
This unique, complete copy is UK 1968 MONO 1st pressing on the dark green Apple labels: PMC 7067 & PMC 7068
All labels carry the ‘Sold in UK..’ texts but omit the ‘An EMI Recording’ text found on later editions.
The discs are housed in a thick card stock, fully laminated, top-loading ‘Garrod & Lofthouse printed mono cover numbered: No.0000005 This copy is 100% complete with both its matt black die-cut inner-sleeves, 4 colour portrait photos, matt UK printed poster and white paper photo spacer.
Matrix numbers: YEX 709-1, 710-1 & YEX 711-1, 712-1
Stamper numbers: 33,3/R, 1/M & 1/RD, 3/RR
Disc weights: 1. 150g 2. 151g CONDITION Cover: VERY GOOD PLUS
This rarest example is contructed from heavy card stock and has survived the past 40 years well and is overall extremely presentable, having sustained no major faults to any part. The panels do have some inevitable natural age-toning to them but are all clean and glossy & retain their high-gloss laminates throughout and remain fully intact over the raised ‘THE BEATLES’ wording.
The front panel is clean & bright with just a faint disc impression from storage and a few small indentation lines visible at a certain angle, but no ‘thumbnails’ or any other creasing or wear.
Although it has lost a little of its original ink, the all-important number – ‘No.0000005’ – is clearly visible and is undamaged. All corners are clean and free from any major bumps with just a slight shelfwear rub to the lower left and a tiny bruise to the lower right.
All of the top-opening edges are straight and very clean with no large ‘pushes’ or any tears or feathering. The inside of the gatefold is clean, glossy and unworn and apart from slight toning around the edges, displays no significant marks or wear.
The rear panel is as clean and bright as the front and again has no ‘thumbnails’ creases or any other significant signs of wear. The spine is a little squashed but is overall clean & straight with just a few small splits to the laminate. However, most is still intact and all of the test is present and readable.
Both lower and side seams are strong, smooth with no missing laminate or any splits or stresses.
No repairs or restoration have been carried out to any part of the cover.
Labels: EXCELLENT PLUS. An extremely bright and clean pair with just some light spindle marks around each centre-hole. Visual: EXCELLENT
Both surfaces are amazingly clean & bright and retain all of their ‘as new’ deep gloss shines on both sides, with no clouding or dulling to any area.
Close inspection in strong daylight reveals just a single 2.5cm light surface mark on side 1 and just three 2mm light marks towards the edge of side 2. However, these minor blemishes are not deep or feelable and have no effect on the sound. Careful examination directly under my halogen desk lamp reveals a few insignificant wispy hairlines consistant with infrequent removal from their matt-black inner-sleeves, but no further marks or wear. Both sides lie 100% flat on the turntable with no signs or dishing or warping.
Audio: EXCELLENT PLUS
This barely played disc sounds clear, clean & warm throughout and my careful play-check at volume revealed no evidence of groovewear distortion or playwear on any track. Side 1 sounds pristine, even the exposed introduction and fade-out of ‘Dear Prudence’ is free from any crackle or interference. Side 2 begins with an unspoilt introduction to ‘Martha My Dear’, and no other traces of wear to any other track. There are no clicks, pops or any othersuch fault any where on this outstanding disc.
Labels: EXCELLENT PLUS
Another beautiful set with just some tiny spindle trails around the hole on side 4.
Again, both surfaces are clean, bright and glossy and bear no significant or major marks when viewed in strong daylight. Careful inspection directly under my halogen desk lamp reveals just some light marks and hairlines consistent with inner-sleeve storage and removal but certainly nothing I would call a scratch. Both sides of this disc also lie 100% flat on the turntable with no signs or dishing or warping.
Audio: EXCELLENT PLUS
This disc is also in terrific audio condition and has only received less than a handful of careful plays on top quality equipment, the audio reproduction throughout is first-class. All of the ‘loud’ tracks on side 3 play perfectly with no traces of groovewear distortion. Even the delicate ‘Mother Nature’s Son’ plays without any ticks or clicks. Side 4 is its equal with just no perceptible wear to any track.
Inner-sleeves: EXCELLENT PLUS
So hard to find in this condition, these two are clean and flat with just the inevitable faint disc impression but no seam splits to either. Photos: MINT
All are as new.
Photo Spacer: NEAR MINT
Clean & bright with just a few tiny handling marks but no creasing or tears.
Poster: NEAR MINT
Clean, crisp & white, this copy has opened just a few times but never hung. All folds are intact and there is no foxing or discolouration to any area.
Here’s what we’ve read.
One of the earliest and most sought-after numbered versions of the Beatles’ ‘White Album’ has been put up for auction on eBay.
The album – no. 0000005 – was given by John Lennon to a close friend before it entered the public domain.
Number’s 1-4 of the album, which went 19 times platinum, were given to the four members of the Beatles.
Originally self-titled, the album came to be known as the ‘White Album’ because of its minimalist artwork, which was created by pop artist Richard Hamilton,
Julia Hutton-Potts, spokesperson for eBay in the UK, described the lot as “a unique piece of memorabilia for any Beatles fan.”
The auction, which closes on November 23rd, is expected to raise thousands.