"Beginnings" first appeared on the group's debut release, self-titled since, at the time, they were known as "Chicago Transit Authority". Released as a single in 1969, it flopped.
But after three top ten singles, all in 1970, the group decided to release it again, putting "Colour My World" on the B-side, just as they had for their first top ten hit, "Make Me Smile". In the Summer of 1971, "Beginnings" gained new life, and peaked at #7 on the Billboard Hot 100, and topped the Adult Contemporary chart.
The radio single, frankly, is an abomination, as the original version clocks in at nearly eight minutes long, and, after all, it was 1971, and Top 40 and AC stations would never consider playing a song that long. So, Columbia released a 2:47 version that succeeded, but only hinted at its full greatness.
So, of course, we're posting the real thing here. Travel back in time to the year of Woodstock, when Gunsmoke and Gomer Pyle led CBS and Rowan and Martin's Laugh-In ruled the television ratings race, and enjoy the full version of "Beginnings". :)