The Warner Bros. Album was compiled as a demo reel to showcase the talents of the then unnamed group, and sent to Hal Halverstadt, the executive who signed Captain Beefheart and his Magic Band to Warner Bros. Records.
Like their other recordings between 1967 and 1972, The Warner Bros. Album was for many years not considered by The Residents to be part of their official discography, and was only officially released by the group in 2018 as a limited edition vinyl pressing for Record Store Day.
The Warner Bros. Album is perhaps better known for its role in the history of the band than for its contents (which are not considered by The Residents to be at all representative of their later direction).
In hopes of gaining wider exposure, the tape was mailed anonymously to Hal Halverstadt at Warner Bros. Records. The band had hoped that Halverstadt, who had signed Captain Beefheart to the label, would appreciate their earnest experiments and, ideally, offer them a budget and a major label platform.
According to Uncle Willie's Highly Opinionated Guide to The Residents, Halverstadt was not overly impressed with the tape (describing it as "okay at best"), but awarded it an "A for Ariginality". The tape was returned, and addressed to "Residents, 20 Sycamore St., San Francisco," which led the group take the name Residents Uninc., and then after the advent of The Cryptic Corporation a few years later, The Residents.
- Strawberry Fields Forever (Lennon-McCartney)
- The Mad Sawmill of Copenhagen, Germany
- Baby Skeletons & Dogs
- Bop Bop Shu Bop Bop
- Stuffed Genital
- Every Day I Masturbate on A Merican Fag
- Oh Mommy, Oh Daddy, Can't You See that it's True?
- Baby Skeletons & Dogs (Reprise)
- The Mad Sawmill of Copenhagen, Germany (Reprise)
- Love & Peace
- The Mad Sawmill of Copenhagen, Germany (Reprise 2)
- Black Velvet Original
- The Mad Sawmill of Copenhagen, Germany (Reprise 3)
- Christmas Morning Foto
- The Mad Sawmill of Copenhagen, Germany (Reprise 4)
- In the Still of the Night
- Maggie's Farm (Dylan)
- Snot and Feces: Live at the Grunt Festival
- Sweet Meat
- Oh Yeah Uhh Bop Shoo Bop
- Ohm is Where the Art Is
- Concerto in R Flat Minor
- Sell American
- Love Theme from a Major Motion Picture
- Prelude for Accordion, Sousaphone and French Horn
- Oh God You're a Pie in the Sky
- Short Circuit Comes to Town
- Marching Toward AEIOU Blues
- In the Still of the Night Again
- Oh Mommy, Oh Daddy, Can't You See that it's True Again
- Art the White Elephant
- Psychedelic and Orgasmic Finale
The Warner Bros. Album and Baby Sex demo tapes were both broadcast to the public in their entirety on KBOO-FM radio in Portland, Oregon, during a Residents-themed radio festival in 1977. Most versions of these two tapes that were widely available amongst fans are home recordings of this broadcast, although higher quality copies from an earlier generation copy have recently become available in a limited series of bootleg CD-Rs.
It is said that these reels were stolen from the band's archives by a former associate and later made available for profit, and as with their other early demo tapes and reels, The Residents and The Cryptic Corporation do not approve of their availability.
In 2004, a remix album, WB:RMX, was released by The Cryptic Corporation as a response to the increasing demand for the original tape's release, and the fact that bootleg recordings of the tape were already being circulated on the Internet. It featured radically remixed versions of a number of the songs from the original tape, with a more modern production style. Excerpts from the original The Warner Bros. Album would eventually become officially available on the ERA B474 and The Delta Nudes' Greatest Hiss compilations in 2012 and 2013.
In 2018, as a limited edition release for Record Store Day, the album was finally issued in full and remastered in its original version for the first time by The Residents, as a special entry in their pREServed series of re-issues. Released as The W***** B*** Album with a black outer sleeve hiding the original cover art within, the newly remastered demo tape was be available in a pressing of 900 copies.
- "Sell American" was sampled in the track "Pink," found in the Chicken Scratching with The Residents compilation.
- A 2011 EYEFUL download of a Talking Light rehearsal included "Baby Skeletons & Dogs", indicating that the song was considered for the tour, but eventually not included in the set list.