Early Beatles audition tape going on the auction block
updated 12:53 PM EST, Sat November 24, 2012
An early portrait of the British rock group The Beatles. Left to right: Paul McCartney, Pete Best, George Harrison (1943 - 2001) and John Lennon (1940 - 1980). (Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
- The Beatles recorded an audition tape for Decca on New Year's Day 1962
- They performed covers of other bands' songs
- Decca rejected the quartet, but EMI Records took a chance on them
London (CNN) -- They were four completely unknown men living in Liverpool in 1962.
Ordinary 20-something-year-olds who had formed what seemed to be a very ordinary rock band.
Their names were John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Pete Best -- they called themselves "The Beatles."
On New Year's Day in 1962, with the help of their manager Brian Epstein, the band recorded an audition tape at London's Decca Studios. They included a collection of cover songs with titles such as "Money," "Crying, Waiting, Hoping," and "Searchin'."
CNN has not been able to verify the authenticity of the audiotape.
The band hoped this audition tape would propel them into a record deal and give them the fame they so desperately wanted.
Unfortunately for them, they were rejected by the record label.
It turned out to be one of the worst decisions in music history.
The Beatles were quickly snatched up by EMI Records and -- after drummer Ringo Starr replaced Best -- the rest, as they say, is history.
Fifty years later, that very audition tape is being put up for auction in London.
"The tape is pretty unique because it captures a moment in history," Ted Owen of auctioneers Fame Bureau told CNN.
"The quality is like sitting in a cinema with headphones on. It's absolutely brilliant. That's the most amazing part, the quality," he said.
This is the first time the audition tape has come out in public.
Since early 2002, the tape was in the possession of an American, but now it could be yours if you're willing to pay.
The tape has a starting bid of $32,000, but Owen expects it to go for much more at the auction on Tuesday.
"Anyone who spends over £20,000 (more than $32,000) on it will be telling everyone on the planet that they own," he said.
"It's a trophy."
Part of complete coverage on
updated 10:26 AM EST, Wed February 6, 2013
Advocates say the exam includes unnecessarily invasive and irrelevant procedures -- like a so-called "two finger" test.
updated 7:09 PM EST, Tue February 5, 2013
Supplies of food, clothing and fuel are running short in Damascus and people are going hungry as the civil war drags on.
updated 1:01 PM EST, Wed February 6, 2013
Supporters of Richard III want a reconstruction of his head to bring a human aspect to a leader portrayed as a murderous villain.
updated 10:48 AM EST, Tue February 5, 2013
Robert Fowler spent 130 days held hostage by the same al Qaeda group that was behind the Algeria massacre. He shares his experience.
updated 12:07 AM EST, Wed February 6, 2013
As "We are the World" plays, a video shows what looks like a nuclear attack on the U.S. Jim Clancy reports on a bizarre video from North Korea.
The relationship is, once again, cold enough to make Obama's much-trumpeted "reset" in Russian-U.S. relations seem thoroughly off the rails.
Ten years on, what do you think the Iraq war has changed in you, and in your country? Send us your thoughts and experiences.
updated 7:15 AM EST, Tue February 5, 2013
Musician Daniela Mercury has sold more than 12 million albums worldwide over a career span of nearly 30 years.
Photojournalist Alison Wright travelled the world to capture its many faces in her latest book, "Face to Face: Portraits of the Human Spirit."
updated 7:06 PM EST, Tue February 5, 2013
Europol claims 380 soccer matches, including top level ones, were fixed - as the scandal widens, CNN's Dan Rivers looks at how it's done.
updated 7:37 AM EST, Wed February 6, 2013
That galaxy far, far away is apparently bigger than first thought. The "Star Wars" franchise will get two spinoff movies, Disney announced.
updated 2:18 AM EST, Fri February 8, 2013
It's an essential part of any trip, an activity we all take part in. Yet almost none of us are any good at it. Souvenir buying is too often an obligatory slog.