The autographed prototype copy of the Beatles' 'Yesterday' . . . And Today album cover has sold for a whopping $234,400. BeattlesStory.com reported that the album, which was first owned by John Lennon, who in exchange for some Beatles bootlegs, gifted the album to then-fan and future record promo man Dave Morrell back in 1971. The auctioned album featured a back sleeve drawing by Lennon of a man holding a shovel. Over the years, Morrell was able to add both Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr's signature to the albums sleeve — marking it the only one in existence signed by three Beatles.
Darren Julien, the CEO and President of Julien’s Auctions, said: “This was a world record for a Beatles Butcher cover and the third highest price paid for a vinyl. In 2015 Julien’s sold Ringo Starr’s number 1 'White Album' for $790,000 and in January of that same year an acetate copy of ‘My Happiness’, the first song Elvis Presley ever recorded sold for $300,000. This is the third highest price paid for a vinyl and the market is still developing so we anticipate in the next five years this same record could bring $500,000 plus.”
The infamous “butcher cover” of Beatles' 'Yesterday' . . . And Today, featured the band dressed in butcher smocks, surrounded by raw meat and discarded doll parts. After some public backlash over the taste of the photo, Capitol Records destroyed the unissued covers, and pasted new color slicks over the scrapped butcher photos. In either pasted over or “peeled” states, the album remains among the most collectible in rock history.
The Beatles' “butcher cover” was long believed to have been the group and photographer Robert Whitaker's sly comment on the barbarism of the war Vietnam. On August 19th, 1966 while on tour in in Memphis, Paul McCartney and John Lennon were asked about their comments regarding America's involvement in Vietnam: “(Reporter): Do you mind being asked questions, for example in America, people keep asking questions about Vietnam, does this seem useful? (Paul McCartney): “Well, I don't know. If you can say that war's no good and a few people believe you than it may be good, I don't know. You can't say too much — that's the trouble. (John Lennon): It seems a bit silly to be in America and for none of us to mention Vietnam as if nothing is happening.”