"Stop Me If You Think You've Heard This One Before"
collectors appendix

 

Australia 7" [CBS 651284-7]
The front of the Australian 7" features the yellow variation of the artwork. The back is white and features dark blue titles, credits and a reproduction of the front artwork of the album "Strangeways Here We Come" (view front and back from menu on the left). The sleeve is actually quite thick and opens from the top. The labels are the classic Australian ones, green with the red silhouette of a man in bowler hat. A-side is labelled 'A' while the flip is unlabelled.

Australia 12" [CBS 651284-6]
The Australian 12'' also features the yellow variation of the artwork. The front shows slightly more of the image than the 7" sleeve. The back is similar to that of the 7", but the layout is different (view front and back from menu on the left). The record is slipped inside an anti-static inner sleeve with round bottom. The labels are the classic Australian ones, green with the red silhouette of a man in bowler hat. A-side is labelled 'A' while the flip is unlabelled.

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Australia 7" promo [CBS 651284-7]
Stock copies were made into promos by being stamped in gold on the back of the sleeve with the promo warning "Promotion only not for sale".

Australia 12" promo [CBS 651284-6]
Stock copies were made into promos by being stamped in gold on the back of the sleeve with the promo warning "Promotion only not for sale".

 

Canada 7" [Sire 92 81367]
In the 1980s, most 7" singles for bands of the caliber of the Smiths were not released in a picture sleeve, but in a generic record bag showing the logo and colours of the label. The Canadian "Stop Me If You Think You've Heard This One Before" 7" therefore comes inside a generic white WEA die-cut paper sleeve. The record's labels are the typical yellow Sire ones, and its centre has a large opening.

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Canada 7" promo [Sire 92 81367]
The promo counterpart to the above is almost identical. It comes in the same sleeve, but the record has a solid centre on which is printed the usual 'not for sale' warning. This promo is backed with "I Keep Mine Hidden" instead of featuring a repeat of the title track on the flip as on the USA promo 7". This is just a case of killing two birds with one stone as the Canadian stock copies were pressed just like the promo ones, including the 'not for sale' line in the middle. The stock copies simply had their centre cut out, taking away the promo warning while the copies destined to be dispatched to radio and retailers remained the way they were pressed.

 

Europe/Germany 12" [Line 609 438 (black vinyl)]
This is usually referred to as the German black vinyl 12". According to the labels and spine, it is actually a 12" of "Girlfriend In A Coma" although the content is identical to that of the German 12"s on coloured vinyl and the German cd-single which put "Stop Me If You Think You've Heard This One Before" as the title track. "Girlfriend In A Coma" is the only title mentioned on the spine and the first track on side 1 while "Stop Me If You Think You've Heard This One Before" is relegated to side 2. The front of this black vinyl 12" is the red variation of this single's Murray Head artwork, just as on the front of the German coloured vinyl 12"s, except for the additional words "MAXI-SINGLE 12 INCH" in black in the top right corner (view left). Just like the German 12"s, the back of the sleeve is red with yellow text consisting mainly of a 7-line paragraph of credits between the track listings for the respective sides (which do not reflect the actual track listings on the labels). However, this European 12" has a barcode in the top right corner, with this edition's catalogue number and a German price code (D) printed beneath it, and the credits at the bottom state that this is actually a European edition printed in Germany. There's a Line Records logo in the bottom left corner and a label codes in the bottom right corner. The inner sleeve is made of white paper with anti-static inner lining. The labels bear the same graph paper background and appear at first glance to be the same as those on the German 12"s, but the text layout and content are actually slightly different and the side featuring "Stop Me If You Think You've Heard This One Before" is labeled as side 2 while the usual side 2 is labeled as side 1. European musical rights companies STEMRA and BIEM are mentioned on the right side of them, which is not the case for the labels of the 'strictly' German 12"s. The catalogue number and label code are different, as expected, and there is no "Stop Me" title beneath the name of the band at the top.

 

Germany 7" [Line LIS1.00025B (coloured vinyl)]
"Stop Me If You Think You've Heard This One Before" was pressed in Germany in three different vinyl colours: milky white, grey and clear yellow. The latter two variations appear to be more common than the former. With the exception of the colour of the wax, everything else about them is identical. The front of the sleeve shows the red variation of the Murray Head artwork seen in the image gallery on the left. The back artwork is vermillion red with yellow text consisting mainly of four lines of credits printed between this single's two titles (view left). The catalogue number is positioned in the top right corner and Line Records logos, credits and label code are found at the very bottom. The sleeve opens from the top. The labels are classic Line Records ones with graph paper motif background. The text on them is the same for the three colour variations, but someone with a sharp eye will notice that its position varies very slightly between them. The name of the band is at the top, Line Records logos on the left, technical data ("GEMA", label code, catalogue number, etc) on the right, track listing and various credits at the bottom, legal warning around the bottom edge. Both sides in all cases are labeled "Side 1" as this single in Germany is actually a double a-side with "Girlfriend In A Coma". All variations are numbered LS1.00025 on the labels but LIS1.00025 on the back of the sleeve.

Germany 12" [Line LIEP3.00013 / LMS 3.00013 (coloured vinyl)]
The German 12" on coloured vinyl, just like the German cd-single, is an EP titled "Stop Me" though this title only appears on the labels. There are actually two different 'strictly' German 12"s. Both were pressed on coloured vinyl: one milky white and the other clear orange (the black vinyl edition is the European 12" described above). With the exception of the colour of the wax, everything else about them is identical. They both show the red variation of the Murray Head artwork on the front (view left). The name of the band on the 12" sleeve varies slightly in relative size and position when compared to the 7" artwork. The back of the sleeve is red with yellow text consisting mainly of a 7-line paragraph of credits between the track listings for the respective sides (view left). Unlike the Euro/German 12" on black vinyl, there is no barcode here in the top right corner of the back of the sleeve, only the catalogue number. Logos, credits and the label code of Line Records are found at the very bottom. The spine states "The Smiths Stop Me If You Think You've Heard This One Before (And More)". The record is slipped inside a white paper inner sleeve with anti-static inner lining. The labels are classic Line Records ones with graph paper background. The text on them is the same for both coloured variations, in content as well as layout, but somewhat different to the Euro/German black vinyl edition. The name of the band and "Stop Me" appear in the top half, the track listing and various credits in the bottom half, two Line Records logos on the left, technical release data ("GEMA", label code, catalogue number, etc) on the right and a legal warning around the bottom edge. Both sides are labelled "Side 1" as this single in Germany is actually a double a-side with "Girlfriend In A Coma". The two coloured editions are actually numbered LMS3.00013 on the labels but LIEP3.00013 on the back of the sleeve.

Germany CD5 [Line LICD9.00440J]
The German cd-single, just like the 12"s on coloured vinyl, is an EP titled "Stop Me" though this title is only given on the disc and on the spines. The front shows the red variation of the Murray Head image also used on the other two German formats, although the text is positioned here slightly differently. The back is vermillion red with yellow text and logos. The track listing is found at the centre in a bigger font than the rest, the catalogue number in the top right corner and Line Records logos, credits and label code at the bottom. Information on the spines is needed. The booklet includes the lyrics to the four songs featured on the single and an illustrated discography which seems to have been reproduced from the inner sleeve of the UK "Sheila Take A Bow" 12", as it appears in the same typeset and doesn't mention "Strangeways Here We Come" which should have been included here with the rest. The back of the booklet follows the same colour pattern as the back tray inlay, but only features at its centre the seven lines of credits usually found on the back of the 12", with the catalogue number in the top right corner. The disc features the graph paper motif usually used by Line Records for their vinyl singles. The track listing is split over the top and bottom halves of it, with two Line logos on the left, technical data (catalogue number, musical rights, copyright year, Compact Disc logo, etc.) on the right and bilingual legal warning around the edge interrupted only with a label code at the very bottom.

A variation has been reported in which the insert is not a stapled booklet, but a single sheet folded in four. It presumably includes the same content (confirmation about this is needed).

Germany 7" four-pack
This item is meant to be hanged on the wall to display records. It has four pockets (2 high by 2 wide) of clear plastic in which 7" records can be slipped. The 7"s are yellow and grey vinyl editions of "Sheila Take A Bow" and yellow and a grey vinyl editions of "Stop Me If You Think You've Heard This One Before". Even though it was sold in legitimate record shops and the records inside are official releases, this item is unofficial because neither Rough Trade or Line Records have anything to do with it. The Smiths were not the only artists to be treated to this kind of packaging in the 1980s.

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Germany 7" promo + press sheet [Line LIS1.00025B]
The "Stop Me If You Think You've Heard This One Before" single was promoted in Germany with copies of the white vinyl German 7" described above paired with a blue Ariola "Single Facts" sheet. This press sheet is the width of a 7" sleeve so it can slipped inside for distribution. It shows the single's track listing with songwriting and publishing credits as well as running times above one paragraph of information. The catalogue number on this press sheet is actually the one what would presumably belong to a Euro/German 7" on black vinyl if such a thing existed. Another interesting point is the track order on this press sheet, "Girlfriend In A Coma" listed above "Stop Me If You Think You've Heard This One Before", as the German 7" is actually a double a-side single.

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Germany 7" test pressing
The test pressing for the German 7"s described above bears white labels with the words "UNGEPRÜFTES MUSTER" ('unverified sample') printed around the top edge and "UNVERKÄUFLICH" ('not for sale') around the bottom edge. Between that are seven printed lines to be filled in with information such as the "Katalog Nr", "Titel" and "Matrizen Nr", but none are filled. Some copies of this test pressing have so far been seen in a stock picture sleeve and others in a white die-cut paper record bag with a white rectangular sticker on it stating the name of the band and the record's matrix numbers.

Germany 12" test pressing [(Line) 300 013]
A test pressing of the German 12"s has made it into the hands of a few lucky collectors. The latter 12"s are on coloured vinyl but their test pressing is on black vinyl. It bears white labels with the words "UNGEPRÜFTES MUSTER" printed around the top edge and "UNVERKÄUFLICH" around the bottom edge. A white rectangular sticker on one label has "The Smiths" and the matrix numbers for both sides on it. The test pressing comes in a white card sleeve showing on respective sides smaller reproductions of the front and back cover art of the European 12" described above (because the latter edition was also made in Germany). The label sticker is also found in the top right corner of the side of the sleeve featuring the photocopy of the single's front artwork. Although this is slipped in a reproduction of the sleeve of the European 12", this is definitely a test pressing for the German 12"s on coloured vinyl according to the matrix numbers (A C-3.00 013-A CS-B-II / A C-3.00 013-B CS-B-II) which match those of the two coloured German 12"s but not their European counterpart on black vinyl.

 

Holland 7" [Megadisc MD5280]
The Dutch 7" features the grey variation of the Murray Head artwork (view left). The image is repeated on the back which also features additional Megadisc logo, credit and catalogue number in the bottom right corner. The back also has a semi-circular cut-out to facilitate access to the record inside. The labels are the usual Megadisc ones with circular saw design.

Holland 12" [Megadisc MD125280]
The Dutch 12" features the grey variation of the Murray Head artwork (view left). Two different variations of the back artwork have been spotted. The most common variation repeats the front image, but also adds the Megadisc logo, a Megadisc marketing credit and the catalogue number in white in the bottom right corner (view left). The other variation looks more like the back of the sleeve of other international editions. It is all grey with no image, only the track listing and the block of credits in yellow and the Megadisc logo, marketing credit and catalogue number in white in the bottom right corner (view left). The record is slipped inside a white die-cut paper inner sleeve. The labels are the usual Megadisc ones with circular saw design.

 

Japan CD5 [Victor VDP-28025]
"Stop Me If You Think You've Heard This One Before" was released by Victor in Japan as a cd mini-album titled "Stop Me" combining tracks from the "Stop Me If You Think You've Heard This One Before", "Girlfriend In A Coma" and "Sheila Take A Bow" 12"s. The album's artwork is the grey variation with yellow text just like in Holland, but the catalogue number appears in yellow in the top right corner on the front. The obi is also grey with yellow text and mentions that the sound was digitally remastered, which is highly doubtful. The booklet opens on a track listing, followed by a biography, lyrics in English, then lyrics in Japanese, all in black and white. The last page has technical compact disc technology information. Track listing and credits are printed on the back in yellow over grey. The disc is plain silver with black text.

Japan CD5 [1990 reissue on Victor VICP-2007]
In 1990 Victor reissued the complete Smiths album catalogue on compact disc (the "Meet The Rock" budget series at 2000 yens). This reissue programme included the "Stop Me" mini-album. The packaging of this edition is very similar to that of the original 1988 edition. The front artwork is the same minus the catalogue number in the top right corner. The booklet content is the same except for the technical compact disc information at the end which was removed. The back and disc surface are identical except for the corrected catalogue number. The obi was changed to the blue and yellow theme of this "Meet The Rock" series. The cd tray was changed for one made of white plastic.

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Japan CD5 promo [Victor VDP-28025]
The promo version of the original 1988 Victor cd has a red 3-character promo sticker over the barcode on the back and promo text printed in red around the cd's inner ring.

Japan CD5 promo [1990 reissue on Victor VICP-2007]
Victor's 1990 reissue programme was promoted with copies of the albums (including this one) with "sample" stamped around the center of the cd and a promo sticker affixed to the obi.

 

UK proofs of sleeve of unreleased single
"Stop Me If You Think You've Heard This One Before" was originally intended as a single in the UK before plans were changed in favour of "I Started Something I Couldn't Finish". The planned artwork for the UK 7" and 12" of "Stop Me If You Think You've Heard This One Before", which was later adapted for "I Started Something I Couldn't Finish", is discussed in the collectors appendix of "I Started Something I Couldn't Finish".

 

USA 7" [Sire 9 28136-7]
The front of the USA single features the blue variation of the artwork (view left). The back is simply blue with a barcode at the top, the main title in the middle and credits and logos at the bottom. The layout is similar to that of the back of the German 7", but there is no mention of the b-side. The sleeve is quite thin and rarely found in excellent condition nowadays. The front of it is slightly higher than the back, making easier access to the record inside. The labels are the usual yellow Sire ones. They feature a barcode at the two o'clock position on each side.

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USA 7" promo [Sire 9 28136-7]
The American promo features "Stop Me If You Think You've Heard This One Before" on both sides of the record. The sleeve is identical to the stock sleeve (although it appears that some copies are found in a plain white die-cut record bag). The labels are similar but the barcode on them was replaced with the words "Promotion not for sale" and "Stereo".

USA 12" promo [Sire Pro-A-2893]
This was used to promote the "Strangeways Here We Come" album, it is therefore described in the latter album's collectors appendix.

USA video promo
The video for "Stop Me If You Think You've Heard This One Before" was included on a various artists promo videocassette titled "Mini Comp (undecipherable number)", dated "11-01-87 and distributed inside a brown leatherette clamshell case with paper insert. The compilation also features videos by Force MDs, Siedah Garrett, the Winans and Highway101.