|Initial UK Release Date||1 March 2004|
|Initial UK Catalogue Number||Parlophone/Dark Horse 5940 862|
|Weeks On UK Chart (to date)||4|
|Peak UK Chart Position||35|
Originally released on 19 November 1976 in the UK and 24 November 1976 in the US, Thirty Three & 1/3 was George’s first album to appear on his own Dark Horse record label. It peaked at number 35 in the UK charts during it’s short four week stay whilst in the US it managed to climb to number 11.
The distribution of Dark Horse records at this time was handled by A&M and George had promised them that this record would be ready by 26 June 1976 (hence the album’s title – not only does it play at 33 1/3 rpm but this would have been George’s 33 1/3 birthday). Unfortunately, due to a bout of hepatitis which delayed the recording, he could not deliver on this promise so A&M, looking to offload the poor selling roster of Dark Horse artists, sued him for $10 million. George settled the dispute by returning the $1 million advance he’d received for the album and signed a new distribution deal with Warner Bros.
Recording of the album took place at George’s Friar Park home studio commencing in May 1976 and finishing in September 1976 with his bout of hepatitis coming between these dates. All the musicians who worked on the album were American and, apart from Billy Preston and Gary Wright, are not really known to me.
It received it’s initial official release on CD in the UK when a newly remastered version was released on 1 March 2004 on Dark Horse/Parlophone under UK catalogue number 5940 862 with international catalogue number 7243 5 94086 2 0. This release contained the bonus track Tears Of The World which is an out take recorded in April 1980 during the Somewhere In England sessions. It could either be bought seperately or as part of the Dark Horse Years 1976-1992 box set.
The initial US CD release was on 11 June 1991, on Dark Horse/Warner Bros under catalogue number 9 26612-2 and contained the same tracks as the original vinyl release. This was followed by the 2004 remastered version around the same time as the UK release on Dark Horse/Capitol/EMI under catalogue number CDP 7243 5 94086 2 0.
I have one copy on CD which can be found in my Dark Horse Years 1976-1992 box set here.