B side

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The B-side is the back of a sound carrier in single format from the time of the record . On the A side was the main piece, on the back an additional piece. After the vinyl records were largely replaced by the (only one-sided recorded) maxi CD , the term B-side only has historical significance.


In rare cases, a B-side even became more popular than the A-side. For example, Reinhard Mey's song Über den Wolken was originally the B-side of Mann from Alemannia. Other well-known pieces of music that were originally just a B-side are I Will Survive by Gloria Gaynor (originally B-side from Substitute ), Beth from Kiss (originally B-side from Detroit Rock City ), I'll Be Around by The Spinners (originally B-side from How Could I Let You Get Away ), Maggie May from Rod Stewart (originally B-side from Reason To Believe ), and Tequila from The Champs (originally B-side from Train to Nowhere ). The song Hoch im Norden by Udo Lindenberg appeared as a single on the B-side, while the A-side was decoupled from the long-playing record Thumbs in the Wind (produced by Udo Lindenberg and Thomas Kukuck ).


For example, the following may appear on B-sides:

  • the second part (Part Two) of the first part of the same song on the A side
  • another track from the artist's current album
  • previously unreleased tracks that did not fit into the style or concept of the album, for example
  • alternative versions of the A-side or other titles ( remixes , instrumental versions , live versions, versions in other languages)
  • Interviews
  • Portrait of the artist (this happened in particular at the end of the 1980s, when the EMI company published cheaper versions of conventional singles, so-called A-singles).

Sometimes two main tracks of equal rank have been and are published on a single, then one speaks of a double A-side. This was particularly common with the Beatles singles , who first made use of the double A-side in pop music with We Can Work It Out / Day Tripper , but also with Strawberry Fields Forever / Penny Lane or Something / Come Together . Another example is Queen's single, We Are the Champions / We Will Rock You , released in 1977 . A variant of such sound carriers are the so-called split singles, which contain pieces by several performers.