I can remember people asking me about it when I was younger. "What do you mean that you don't have the White Album?" I was 12 years old and I was reluctant to get an album that was so expensive, a double album and not sure about the number of hit records on it. I had their Greatest Hits albums, the Red and Blue double disc sets, and the White Album tracks were on the Blue record.
The Beatles learned that people were calling their album "the White Album" and it was never the official title of the double disc set. It was simply titled "The Beatles." It is probably the most ecclectic and bizarre album that the Beatles produced. Paul was noodling at the piano doing songs that ranged from Broadway musical numbers to folk music and then competing with the Who with a blaring rocker called "Helter Skelter." George was searching for answers in "Long, Long," made social commentary in "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" aided by Beatle friend Eric Clapton on guitar. Ringo was given a lullaby to sing from John "Goodnight" and added his own composition "Don't Pass Me By." John, the most bizarre creator on the most bizarre of Beatle albums, concocted an avant gard piece called "Revolution 9," attributed to his new girlfriend the conceptual artist Yoko Ono.
The White Album represents the fragments of what the Beatles had become. The group was no longer functioning cohesively but was wafting away at remote ends of EMI studios recording their individual pieces with random inclusions of other Beatles, guests and other recording artists and session musicians. At one point, the idea for the album cover was to take the four included photos of the Beatles and put them in the windows of a doll's house as an ode to Ibsen's famous drama "A Doll's House." Interestingly enough, Ibsen's play was about a woman who was dysfunctional in a relationship with a man that was still her husband but was a man whom she no longer loved. In much the same way, the Beatles were still a band but recording as solo artists with various band members contributing bits and pieces. They did record some tracks together, but the overall cohesion of the Beatles was lacking.
Later when the Beatles split up in 1970, they attributed their demise from tensions that heated up during the recording of the White Album.