Is This the Most Accurate Fan Cover of the Beatles Ever? Hear a Faithful Recreation of the Abbey Road Medley

I once thought I might be from the last gen­er­a­tion to have spent a good part of their youth in front of a pair of speak­ers, play­ing their par­ents’ Bea­t­les records until they mem­o­rized every note. Abbey Road was a spe­cial favorite in our house. I must have heard the out­ro med­ley a hun­dred thou­sand times or more. Now that reis­sue vinyl is every­where, or some­thing resem­bling the orig­i­nal records, there are loads of peo­ple who can say the same thing—and loads more who have streamed Abbey Road on repeat until it’s seared into their mem­o­ries.

I ask those peo­ple now, young and old and mid­dle-aged, whose famil­iar­i­ty with Paul McCartney’s voice on “Gold­en Slumbers/Carry that Weight/The End” comes from this kind of obses­sive lis­ten­ing: do you think the cov­er ver­sion above post­ed on YouTube by Andy­Boy 63 sounds exact­ly like the record­ing made at EMI Stu­dios (renamed Abbey Road after the album) in 1969? Answer before lis­ten­ing to the orig­i­nal “Gold­en Slum­bers,” below. A fair num­ber of YouTube com­menters say they mis­took this for the album ver­sion or an out­take.


By far the most accu­rate cov­er ever of any song.

I thought this was the Bea­t­les for about three min­utes.… I knew it was­n’t Abbey Road but thought it was some track off the anthol­o­gy. This is good enough to make me think it’s actu­al­ly the Bea­t­les!

It sounds to me like a cov­er ver­sion that approx­i­mates the tim­bre of dynam­ics of the orig­i­nal, impres­sive­ly so, but is also clear­ly not The Bea­t­les.

We can hear the dif­fer­ences between Sir Paul’s voice and piano and Andy’s record­ing in the first few phras­es, but it’s not as if Andy has set out to deceive lis­ten­ers, mark­ing the songs as cov­ers in the descrip­tion. His inten­tion is to pay trib­ute. “As a child,” he writes on his YouTube chan­nel, “I always want­ed to learn to play gui­tar, bass, drums and piano so that I could play and sing my favourite Bea­t­les songs.” You’ll find sev­er­al more, includ­ing “Sgt. Pepper’s Lone­ly Hearts Club Band/With a Lit­tle Help from My Friends,” just above. Again, it sounds to me like a faith­ful­ly earnest cov­er cre­at­ed as a labor of love. And again, for many rea­sons, not the Bea­t­les. (His cov­er of “Help!” on the oth­er hand is scar­i­ly good. I think he does a bet­ter Lennon impres­sion.)

You’ve got to hand it to Andy for tak­ing his fan­dom to this lev­el of imi­ta­tion. The sin­cer­est form of flat­tery may not pro­duce the best cov­er ver­sion, but it is an excel­lent way to show off one’s musi­cian­ship. Still, no one does McCart­ney bet­ter than McCart­ney (see him play him­self below).

Oth­er artists play­ing his songs might sound best doing it as them­selves. But as an exer­cise in stu­dious recre­ation of Bea­t­les arrange­ments, Andy­Boy 63’s proves he’s even more of a fan than those who can hum every bar of Abbey Road with­out miss­ing a note. While we war­ble “Here Comes the Sun” in the show­er, he’s sin­gle-hand­ed­ly, per­sua­sive­ly rere­cord­ed some of The Bea­t­les’ most famous songs. He’s also cov­ered Lennon’s solo hits and songs by Bud­dy Hol­ly and Elvis, as well as releas­ing orig­i­nal music. Check it out here.

And for an absolute­ly fab ver­sion of the Abbey Road med­ley, watch the Fab Faux’s pret­ty impec­ca­ble ver­sion right below.

Relat­ed Con­tent:

Paul McCartney’s Con­cep­tu­al Draw­ings For the Abbey Road Cov­er and Mag­i­cal Mys­tery Tour Film

Bea­t­les Trib­ute Band “The Fab Faux” Per­forms Live an Amaz­ing­ly Exact Repli­ca of the Orig­i­nal Abbey Road Med­ley

Hear 100 Amaz­ing Cov­er Ver­sions of Bea­t­les Songs

209 Bea­t­les Songs in 209 Days: Mem­phis Musi­cian Cov­ers The Bea­t­les’ Song­book

The Band Every­one Thought Was The Bea­t­les: Revis­it the Klaatu Con­spir­a­cy of 1976

Josh Jones is a writer and musi­cian based in Durham, NC. Fol­low him at @jdmagness

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Comments (4)
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  • Esteban says:

    Come on, any­one that “have spent a good part of their youth in front of a pair of speak­ers, play­ing their par­ents’ Bea­t­les records until they mem­o­rized every note” sim­ply can’t mis­take this for the real thing.
    At all.

  • Larry says:

    At 65, even with ears that have lost dynam­ic range, and hav­ing lis­tened to the Bea­t­les since 1965, I can quite eas­i­ly tell it was Paul. The are always cer­tain vocal cues and inflec­tions that I have mem­o­rized from hear­ing the orig­i­nal so many times which, if the singer miss­es any of them are glar­ing clues. He is good, but nobody else is Paul McCart­ney.

  • Edouard says:

    I thought it sound­ed slight­ly dif­fer­ent. More tin­ny.

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