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Yoko Ono set to visit First World War memorial arch opened by Prince Harry in Folkestone as Triennial arts festival opens - Monday, September 01, 2014

Artist Yoko Ono is hoping to visit Folkestone next month to pay her respects at a new war memorial in Folkestone, it has been revealed today. The planned visit was announced as her work goes on show as part of the town Triennial arts festival. The widow of Beatle John Lennon is among the artists showing work around the town for the festival, which officially opens on Saturday and runs until November. During a press preview today, festival curator Lewis Biggs said the artist hoped to come to the town at the end of September and visit the Step Short memorial arch. The arch was opened by Prince Harry earlier this month to mark the centenary of the outbreak of the First World War. Ono is creating two new exclusive works for Folkestone. Margate’s Tracey Emin will be in town on Saturday as the launch day coincides with the arts extravaganza the Vauxhall Art Car Boot Fair at the harbour.

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Book chronicles Beatles' American tour - Monday, September 01, 2014

Ivor Davis knows exactly where he was 50 years ago today—hanging out with The Beatles. As the West Coast bureau chief for the London Daily Express, Davis was assigned to cover the first U.S. tour by the Fab Four that started with a performance at the Cow Palace in San Francisco on Aug. 19, 1964 and ended Sept. 20, 1964 at the Paramount Theater in New York. From young women bargaining with him to get near John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison or Ringo Starr to the late night Monopoly games (where Lennon was known to cheat), Davis recounts his ticket to ride along with the band on that cross-country trek in his new book “The Beatles and Me On Tour” (Cockney Kid Publishing, $15.99). Davis never planned to write a book on the experience. “When you are a reporter on a daily paper, you do a story and then you forget about it. That’s what happened for years and years,” Davis says. “I didn’t think it was such a big deal, but I would go to a dinner party and people would find out that I toured with The Beatles and they wanted to talk about it.”

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The true tale of John Lennon’s mum revealed in Walton author's book - Sunday, August 31, 2014

Most Beatles fans know stories about John Lennon’s mother Julia, whose early death in 1958 scarred him for life and inspired his music. On his 1970 song Mother, he sang “You had me but I never had you”. But Kevin Roach says many don’t know the true story – and he hopes his new interactive book, Julia, will set the record straight. Walton-born Kevin, who has already written about George Harrison and Paul McCartney, wanted to tell the hidden story of John’s roots rather than repeating stories of John’s fame. He says that the idea of Julia as an irresponsible “good-time girl” who couldn’t look after her son came from Aunt Mimi, who raised John in her house in Menlove Avenue. But over time a more nuanced portrait of Julia has emerged, helped by John’s half-sister Julia Baird publishing her story in Imagine This in 2007. So Kevin decided to produce a book dedicated to Julia Lennon, delving into Liverpool’s archives to learn her family history and speaking to Julia Baird and others who knew John and his mother. 

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Paul McCartney remembers his favorite family holiday - Sunday, August 31, 2014

We’re coming to the end of the school summer holidays here in the UK (and our unfortunately short summer!). Lots of you will have noticed the additional noise, chaos and excitement that summer brings when school’s out! It’s certainly a very exciting time and really does seem to last forever through the eyes of a child. It’s a shame that the older you get, the shorter those precious months become!  
August’s question for ‘You Gave Me The Answer’ comes from Donna Simmons in the US who asks… “As a child, what was your favourite holiday and why?” We caught up with Paul recently to find out. He replied, 

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GRAMMY Foundation, MusiCares Announce New Board - Friday, August 29, 2014

The GRAMMY Foundation and MusiCares Foundation — the affiliated charities of The Recording Academy — announced that their respective Boards have elected new officers and members. The new GRAMMY Foundation Board officers are Chair Tim Bucher, CEO, Lyve Minds Inc.; Vice Chair Geoff Cottrill, chief marketing officer, Converse; and Secretary/Treasurer Rachna Bhasin, senior vice president of corporate strategy and business development, SiriusXM Radio. The new Chair Emeritus is Rusty Rueff, venture startup investor and advisor. Ryan Seacrest, TV and radio host/producer, continues in his role as Honorary Chair of the GRAMMY Foundation Board.

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The Beatles historian claims Fab Four were discovered in Tuebrook - not The Cavern - Friday, August 29, 2014

A Beatles historian has claimed manager Brian Epstein first spotted the Fab Four when they performed in a youth club in Tuebrook. Gerry Murphy, who was a co-founder of the Cavern City Tours, claims to have discovered that the group was first seen by the manager who helped them to international success at St John’s Youth Centre on Snaefell Avenue, Tuebrook. And he said the club, also known as Brockman Hall and now home to disability charity Daisy Inclusive, was the setting for the “best rock and roll ever seen”.  Mr Murphy said he was studying for an MA in the Beatles when he came across the information. He now believes Epstein came to a Beatles concert in July 1961 and spotted the group months before his first reported gig at the Cavern in November that year.

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Production issues delay latest Paul McCartney Archive Collection releases - Thursday, August 28, 2014

The reissues were originally supposed to come out on September 22 as part of the Paul McCartney Archive Collection, following similar reissues of 'Band On The Run', 'McCartney', 'McCartney II', 'Ram' and 'Wings Over America'. However, the records will now be released on November 3 "due to production issues". No further information about the delay has been released.  The albums will come out in a two-disc standard edition and three-disc deluxe edition, complete with extra material, a book featuring unpublished photographs and new interviews with McCartney.  

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In The Great Debate Over Beatles Vs. Elvis, Beatles are America's Favorite Band While Elvis is Musical Artist Number Two - Thursday, August 28, 2014

New York, N.Y. - August 27, 2014 - In 1964, four musicians from Liverpool appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show. Now, fifty years after that iconic performance, John, Paul, George and Ringo, otherwise known as The Beatles, are America's favorite musician or band, moving up from a tie for third place in 2010. Their counterpart in that 2010 tie, Elvis Presley - who appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1956 - moves up to the number two spot this year. After dropping a "secret" album earlier this year and performing with her husband to sold-out crowds around the country, Beyoncé debuts on the favorite musician or band list at number three. They debuted their first album 46 years ago and their song "Stairway to Heaven" consistently lands on classic rock top ten lists, and now Led Zepplin debuts in the number four spot. And after conducting his farewell tour, the "King of Country," George Strait, moves up two spots to number five on this year's list. These are some of the results of The Harris Poll® of 2,306 U.S. adults surveyed online between July 16 and 21, 2014.

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Paul Helps to #saveElephants - Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Paul recently signed a Martin D-28 left-handed guitar, which was put up for auction and raised an astonishing $50,000 within minutes. Bidding began in the morning on eBay with a starting bid of $10,000 and quickly reached the impressive final amount in no time. Proceeds from the auction will go to The Nature Conservancy's African Elephant Initiative. Alongside his signature, Paul also scribed, "This guitar saves elephants" on the Martin guitar. A fitting slogan since the funds will be used to increase security for elephants on the ground in Africa and reduce demand for ivory.

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Mark David Chapman must continue to serve prison time for John Lennon's murder, parole board says - Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Fearing he may commit more crimes, a three-person Parole Board panel announced Friday it has denied Chapman’s eighth bid for release. He won’t be eligible for parole again for another two years. The 59-year-old is serving a 20-year to life sentence at upstate Wende Correctional Facility after gunning down the former Beatle in 1980 as Lennon returned home from a late night recording session with wife Yoko Ono. ALBANY — John Lennon's killer will have to let it be in prison for at least two more years. Fearing he may commit more crimes, a three-person Parole Board panel announced Friday it has denied Mark David Chapman’s eighth bid for release. According to the decision, “the panel has determined that if released at this time, there is a reasonable probability that you would not live and remain at liberty without again violating the law.”

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Chris Martin and Stella McCartney team up to complete their ice bucket challenge - Tuesday, August 26, 2014

So its no surprise estranged husband Chris Martin and her fashion designer pal Stella McCartney, joined forces to complete the charity stunt, which involves being drenched in ice cold water. The Coldplay frontman could be seen holding a large black umbrella above his head as he said: "We’ve been nominated to do the ice bucket challenge." Not looking too impressed with the task at hand, Stella jokingly replied: "I’m a fashion designer. I am not going to get wet." In a last minute change of plan Chris, 37, then began to lower his umbrella as he responded: "Okay then, we just won’t do it."  The pair were instantly soaked with freezing cold water, which was poured on them by a mystery culprit on the balcony above. After getting wet for the good cause, Chris ran up to the camera and said:  We’d like to nominate Bono, Sir Paul McCartney… and who was the other one?" Stella then revealed she would like to nominate actress Angelina Jolie

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Beatles give first Canadian concert - Monday, August 25, 2014

In 1964, the Beatles released the album Something New, which is what they were to North American audiences. Their first Canadian concert took place that year at Vancouver’s Empire Stadium, where tickets topped out at $5.25. The concert was broadcast live on CKNW and, for a performance that lasted 27 minutes, the band was contracted to be paid 60 per cent of the $100,000 box-office take. According to Vancouver Sun music critic William Littler, the money was barely earned by the “Liverpudlian tonsorial horrors” who looked “anthropologically interesting” but were loud, monotonous and unmusical.

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Cirque du Soleil takes Beatles tribute to airports - Monday, August 25, 2014

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Visitors flying into Las Vegas got more than just their luggage when they stopped by baggage claim. Cast members from Cirque du Soleil danced on the carousels, did handstands on the moving sidewalks and rode a vintage Volkswagen Beetle into the terminal Thursday afternoon at McCarran International Airport. The unannounced, three-song shows marked the 50th anniversary of the Beatles' flight from San Francisco to Las Vegas. The band's two-show gig in 1964 was the only time the Fab Four performed in Sin City.

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Finally, an Algorithm to Sort Your Beatles Albums - Sunday, August 24, 2014

If you’re a fan of the Beatles, you no doubt know that ["She Loves You"] came before ["All You Need Is Love"]. But what about ["Help!"] or ["Yellow Submarine"] or ["I am the Walrus"]? You may not know which came first, but researchers from Lawrence Technological University in Michigan created an algorithm that does. By analyzing the evolving structure of the Beatles’ music, the computer program was able to correctly place the Fab Four’s albums in chronological order. The work is in the journal Pattern Recognition Letters. [Joe George, Lior Shamir: Computer analysis of similarities between albums in popular music] The researchers initially produced the algorithm to catalogue whale songs. [whale sound] And they figured what worked for killer whales should also work for the lads from Liverpool. 

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The 59 best internet radio stations The best internet radio stations, selected and updated by Pete Naughton - Sunday, August 24, 2014

There's a whole lot of good radio out there which isn't made up of soporific playlists and banal chatter but it isn't always easy to find. With this in mind, we've compiled a list of the best internet radio stations, which are guaranteed to introduce you to something fresh, whatever your tastes. We'll keep listening and update this list every week with the best new internet radio stations. 

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John Lennon’s first ever self portrait on sale for £3million - Friday, August 22, 2014

For many, John Lennon – along with Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr – is known for starting a musical revolution with the Beatles. However, before the Beatles even began, Lennon studied at Liverpool College of Art along with the original Beatles bassist, Stuart Sutcliffe. This rather unflattering self-portrait is set to sell for £3million at a London auction house. The piece dates back to 1958, an important year for the then 18-year-old Lennon as it was this year his mother was killed in a car accident, he played with Paul McCartney and George Harrison for the first time and he met his first wife, Cynthia Lennon. The painting is rather unflattering expressionist piece showing Lennon with a pot belly and male mammaries. Louise Cooper, the owner-managing director of CooperOwen Music Media Auctions of London which is selling the piece, said:

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Paul McCartney waxwork set to be auctioned for up to £1,000 - Friday, August 22, 2014

A waxwork model of Sir Paul McCartney will take pride of place at a Beatles-themedauction in Liverpool this weekend. The mannequin could go for between £800 and £1,000, the auction’s organiser believes. Stephen Bailey, manager of The Beatles Shop in Mathew Street, told the ECHO: “We hold the auction every year and it attracts people willing to spend £10 as well as people willing to spend thousands of pounds.” The life-size waxwork came from a museum in Great Yarmouth. The auction begins at 10.30am tomorrow and will be held at the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts, co-founded by McCartney on the site of his old school. There will be 330 items up for grabs, including signatures, clothes, books, posters and other memorabilia. Mr Bailey said: “We have sold all sorts of stuff over the years. The international pull is amazing. “This year will be the biggest auction we’ve ever had with 330 lots. “The Beatles were the first ever boy band and you can only invent something once – and they invented it. That’s why they are still so popular.”

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KCBS Reporter Recalls Beatles Exclusive Interview 50 Years Ago Today Ahead Of Landmark Cow Palace Concert - Thursday, August 21, 2014

“All of my girlfriends. We all lived on the same street. All we did, you know,we we’re the Beatle’ girlfriends every single chance we had,” Denise McKevitt Rasmussen, who was celebrating her ninth birthday, said. Her dad let her pick two friends to take to the Beatles show at the Cow Palace. One of them was Terry O’Brien. “I remember I wore my pink pants dress with my John Lennon boots. Everyone had them then—the little white boots,” O’Brien said. Terry’s mom Gina was not so thrilled. “I just thought, she’s too young; she’ll get eaten alive down there but, oh, she wanted to go so bad,” she said. “They were so excited.” While youthful fans were primping, a KCBS reporter named Hilly Rose was trying to figure out an angle on what was obviously the story of the day. “The Beatles were big but really with teenagers—young people. And so guys our age, who in that time where in their 30s and 40s working at KCBS, we didn’t know a lot about them,” Rose said.

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CLASSIC ROCKERS DOMINATE ‘RICHEST BASSISTS’ LIST - Thursday, August 21, 2014

They hold down the low end, but many of them are living the high life. A new list compiles the Top 10 Richest Bassists in the World, and there are many of our favorites among them. This countdown can be found over at a website fittingly called the Richest. Unsurprisingly, it’s topped by Paul McCartney, whose net worth is valued at $1.2 billion. In fact, McCartney is so far ahead of the pack that he’s got more money than the next four bassists combined. There’s a tie for second, with Sting and Gene Simmons both worth $300 million. Two months ago, Sting made news when, while discussing his fortune, said that he will not pass it on to his six children so that they understand the value of a hard day’s work. “I certainly don’t want to leave them trust funds that are albatrosses ’round their necks,” he said. “I told them there won’t be much money left because we are spending it!

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Kanye West secretly recording with Paul McCartney - Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Kanye West has secretly been recording tracks with SirPaul McCartney, sources exclusively tell Page Six. The rapper and the former Beatle have quietly been collaborating on a number of tracks that could develop into an album, we’re told. One song, tentatively titled “Piss on My Grave,” is sparking some chatter. West’s wife Kim Kardashian has been heard telling friends she was a little surprised they chose such a provocative name. Kanye, whose rep declined to comment, was also present at McCartney’s show at LA’s Dodger Stadium last week. The legend had previously revealed he would be interested in collaborating with a rapper such as Kanye or Jay Z.

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