A new statue of the Beatles is due to be officially unveiled at Liverpool’s Pier Head this week. The giant bronzes of John Lennon , Paul McCartney , George Harrison and Ringo Starr are being installed in front of the Three Graces – where they were wrapped in tarpaulin against the stormy weather this morning. They have been donated to the city by the Cavern Club and have been sculpted by artist Andrew Edwards, who also created the All Together Now World War I statue last year.
Cavern’s managing director Bill Heckle said: “It has been an unbelievable experience to witness the transformation of this city since Cavern City Tours was incorporated in 1983. “It bears little or no resemblance to the forward thinking vibrant and world-class city that now stands before us. “It has been undeniable that tourism has been an integral and driving factor in the renaissance of Liverpool and its most famous four sons have played a pivotal role in bringing people here. “We’re proud that we have been able to finance this project on behalf of fans from all over the world.”
The unveiling on Friday coincides with the 50th anniversary of the last time the band played in their home c details
While the Beatles' first Anthology, released 20 years ago this month, isn't exactly canonical Fab Four, it's worth remembering how momentous the compilation seemed at the time. Perhaps you were among those whose minds were blown in anticipation of new Beatle baubles, demos, outtakes and live cuts that went beyond what even the most rapacious bootleg collector would have been able to gather up.
Would it feel as if one were present at Abbey Road, beholding an impassioned conversation before the next masterpiece was commenced? Would there be takes to challenge the known, canonical ones for "best ever" versions? Would one discover a fresh McCartney vocal to claim as a favorite going forward, some new delight that would repay hundreds of listenings, just as the old Beatles records always had?
Upon its November, 1995, release, Anthology 1 was a huge seller, as if there was any way it could not be. Posthumous round-ups of rarities were normally geared toward the obsessives, but as we're talking Beatles, Fab Four diehards form their own kind of widespread subculture, and thus a listening majority.
And it's not hard to imagine fans agog over performances like a live cut of "This Boy" from The Morecamb details
It has only been a week since John Fardy and Shane Coleman took a look at John Lennon's Plastic Ono Band album for the Cultural Toolbox. It's only fair to give some of the other former Beatles some attention, so this week's choice was Paul McCartney and Wings with their 1973 album Band on The Run.
Shane started by explaining how he agreed with John's suggestion last week that the Plastic Ono Band was a great album, "until he said it was the best post-Beatles album by any ex-Beatles. To which I profoundly disagreed, and I said no - this album, Band on the Run, is a better album".
John 'stands resolute' in his view that Plastic Ono is the finest of those albums, but admits "Band on the Run is a great post-Beatles album, and I think it's the second best post-Beatles album".
They did give passing mention to George Harrison's All Things Must Pass, leading to John reflecting on the origins of the phrase 'band on the run'.
"The story of how this album was made is quite interesting," he explained. "The phrase, McCartney heard it first, was from George Harrison in a meeting on the dissolution of Apple Corps.
"Harrison had used this phrase 'band on the run' and it stuck in McCartney's head. Fast fo details
What do acid, Peter Fonda, and an argument have in common?
All of these elements led to the recording of “She Said She Said,” the Revolver track known for another fact: Paul McCartney did not participate in the session. Nevertheless, “She Said She Said” stands as a classic example of the Beatles’ musical and lyrical experimentation.
The idea for the track originates from an August 24, 1965 party which occurred during the Beatles’ US tour. Held at the Beatles’ rented house in Los Angeles, the party saw the group hosting such luminaries as Roger McGuinn, David Crosby, and Fonda. During the event everyone except Paul McCartney dropped acid; when George Harrison experienced disturbing hallucinations, Fonda attempted to soothe Harrison. According to the Beatles Bible website, Fonda told Harrison about how he had almost died at ten years old after accidentally shooting himself in the stomach. John Lennon overheard Fonda stating “I know what it’s like to be dead”; annoyed and upset by his words, Lennon replied “You’re making me feel like I’ve never been born. Who put all that shit in your head?” After Lennon recovered from the trip, he details
He was the diffident Beatle, a quiet and unassuming figure beside the towering egos of John Lennon and Paul McCartney.
But, after his innate creativity was allowed to flourish, George Harrison made his own mark as a great songwriter, with works such as Here Comes The Sun, While My Guitar Gently Weeps holding their own beside those of his colleagues.
And Something was hailed by Frank Sinatra as "the greatest love song ever written".
The son of a bus driver, George Harrison was born in the Hunts Cross area of Liverpool on 25 February 1943.
Although his childhood home was a back-to-back-terrace house with an outside toilet, a scholarship to the Liverpool Institute, where he met Paul McCartney, a year his senior, held out the promise of a better life.
Like millions of his contemporaries, the young George Harrison fell under the spell of rock 'n' roll, especially the records brought to Liverpool by visiting seamen and played, by night, on Radio Luxembourg.
Aged 14, he bought a £3 guitar, music replaced his academic studies and, a year later, his mastery of more than the mere basic chords brought about his induction into The Quarrymen, a group which featured John Lennon and Paul M details
Former Beatles man Paul McCartney has written a letter in support of the 'Meat Free Mondays' campaign, addressing David Cameron in advance of the Paris Climate Change Conference, which begins on Monday (November 30).
The McCartney Family have been backing the campaign since 2009. The campaign argues that developed countries can reduce their carbon footprint by 2% overnight if everyone cuts out meat consumption one day a week, as well as talking about health benefits.
The McCartney's suggestions include the implementation of Meat Free Mondays at schools, universities and government buildings, as well as involving restaurants and private businesses.
Alongside his letter, Paul McCartney has released a video on behalf of the campaign, in which he says:
"Hello there. Paul McCartney speaking … to you." "If you heard that meat production was one of the biggest contributors to greenhouse gases in our atmosphere, what would you do? Would you just ignore that fact, or would you want to do something and want to find a solution?" "Well, we encourage people at Meat Free Monday to not eat meat on a Monday – or any other day of the week – just one day makes a real difference!" "The idea has b details
Pity the poor Brits, who only received the first side of the Beatles’ Magical Mystery Tour as an EP. After all, Side 2 of the 1967 American version included the greatest double-sided single in Beatles history — “Penny Lane” and “Strawberry Fields Forever” — when Capitol paired the original film’s music with a trio of recent double-sided hits.
It made for a surprisingly effective soundtrack, when you consider its association with such a badly conceived, awfully executed movie misfire. But even the American version of Magical Mystery Tour — released in the U.S. on November 27, 1967, it’s now part of the canon — struggles to overcome comparisons with the Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, issued earlier the same year. There’s no over-reaching theme on Magical Mystery Tour, no fizzy medleys, no eye-popping maze of cultural icons to pore over on the cover — and that tends to expose the weaker songs in a way that it didn’t for Sgt. Pepper.
So, we have Paul McCartney offering the limpid, but ultimately undercooked “The Fool on the Hill” and, with “Your Mother Should Know,” another in what details
“The White Album”—its official title is the decidedly simple The Beatles—was released on November 22, 1968 to an eager audience. Released almost 18 months after the seminal Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band album, the 30-song collection captured John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr indulging in a variety of musical styles. While the songwriting was evolving, and most of the songs were composed while attending a Transcendental Meditation course, the relationships between the four continued to dissolve during the recording; The Beatles officially broke up in April 1970. Here are some facts about one of the most polarizing, enigmatic records ever made.
1. A BEACH BOY HELPED WITH THE BEACH BOY PARODY "BACK IN THE USSR." Mike Love was a fellow attendee of the Maharishi’s course in Rishikesh, India. He recalled McCartney and his acoustic guitar at breakfast one morning playing what would become the first song on the 'White Album." Love suggested putting something in the song about “all the girls around Russia.” McCartney listened.
2. RINGO STARR QUIT THE BAND FOR TWO WEEKS. Starr never felt like more of an outsider within the band than during details
It’s the ultimate rock’n’roll souvenir. Ringo Starr is to auction off the first ever copy of the band’s1968 album, The Beatles, more commonly known as the White Album.
Each unit of the record, which acquired its name due to its minimalist packaging, came with its own serial number stamped on the cover. White Album No 0000001 will be sold at Julien’s, the Beverly Hills auction house that specialises in celebrity memorabilia, on 3 to 5 December.
The first four pressings of the LP were all in possession of the Beatles. It was assumed that No 0000001 belonged to John Lennon, who Paul McCartney once said “shouted loudest” for it. But it turns out the drummer has had the record all along, and kept it locked away in a London bank vault for more than 35 years.
Bidding on the record starts at $20,000 (£13,276), but it is estimated to fetch up to $60,000. Copy No 0000005 of the album sold at an auction in 2008 for around $30,000.
Starr is also auctioning off many items of jewellery, as well as art, clothes and instruments, including George Harrison’s Gretsch Tennessean guitar, which is expected to fetch up to $200,000.
By: Nadia Khomami
After feverishly reading Robert Rosen's updated 15th anniversary eBook edition of Nowhere Man: The Final Days of John Lennon, you feel like you are inside The Dakota with John Lennon and Yoko Ono. This isn't quite your average rock n roll biography. In a twist of fate, John Lennon's personal diaries landed in Rosen's lap on May of 1981, about a year and a half after the famed ex-Beatle was killed outside his apartment by a crazed fan.
The making of this book is as intriguing as the book itself. Here is an excerpt from the Prelude of Nowhere Man, where Rosen recounts the process of transcribing Lennon's diaries:
"Still, it was not until Wednesday, October 21, that I began the process of transcribing Lennon's diaries. It was exhausting work that continued unabated until the end of November. No matter how much I transcribed, there was always more; the task seemed endless. I forced myself into a routine that rarely varied: I woke up at 5 A.M., rolled out of bed and tore into the journals. Then, for the next 16 hours, fueled by coffee and amphetamines, I wrestled with Lennon's scrawls and codes and symbols. As I transcribed his words on my IBM Selectric, I said them out loud like an incantation, and I began to feel w details
What kind of contrarian would single out 1970 as his favorite year for Beatles music? That was, after all, the year the Beatles disbanded and broke the hearts of millions of music fans around the world.
That’s Chris Carter, host of the long-running “Breakfast with the Beatles” radio show heard Sunday mornings in Los Angeles on KLOS-FM (95.5).
“We got something like 14 Beatles records that year: not only the ‘Hey Jude’ and ‘Let It Be’ [Beatles] albums, but solo albums from Paul, George, John and two from Ringo, plus John’s ‘Instant Karma’ single, ‘My Sweet Lord’ from George, etc. So it really is my favorite year.
It certainly was a year of dramatic transition for all four Beatles — and Beatle fans — as the group that brought so many innovations to pop music during its relatively brief eight-year recording career called it quits, and each member of the quartet moved forward with solo endeavors.
The biggest surprise of all, however, may have been Harrison’s emergence from the long shadow under which he’d been working for so long being in the same band with Lennon and McCartney.
He did it wit details
Two Dutch Beatles fans are demanding hundreds of thousands pounds in damages over the “unlawful” seizing of behind-the-scenes tapes of the band.
Stan Snelleman and Jos Remmerswaal, who are music traders, allege that more than 500 audio tapes of recording sessions in 1969 – which formed the basis of the film and album Let it Be – were seized by British and Dutch police 12 years ago and taken back to London.
They are pursuing a civil case for damages of €650,000 (£459,000) plus €50,000 in costs from the Dutch state. The tapes were given back to Apple Films Ltd, owned by the Beatles and their heirs. Their case is expected in an appeal court in The Hague in January. Apple alleged that the tapes had been stolen.
Two British men, Nigel Oliver and Colin Dillon, were charged in July 2006 over the disappearance of the tapes. Dillon was given a suspended sentence for trying to sell them. Charges against Mr Snelleman – who said he bought the tapes in the Nineties – and Mr Remmerswal for handling stolen goods were dropped. They sued for the return of the tapes in 2013 and lost, but are appealing.
The tapes feature songs, covers and conversations between Joh details
Olivia Harrison visited Boston, Massachusetts in early October to address the 60th Annual Meeting of UNICEF National Committees and visit with children who participated in the groundbreaking UNICEF Kid Power (unicefkidpower.org) program last spring. During her visit, she met with local UNICEF leadership in Boston and served as the closing keynote speaker for the UNICEF meeting that brings together senior UN officials and UNICEF leaders from more than 40 countries around the world.
In her speech, she spoke about her experience with UNICEF and what she learned from George about philanthropy. She encouraged the group of 75 attendees to continue to come up with new and lasting ways of motivating people to support UNICEF’s work to put children first around the world, much like George used the Concert for Bangladesh and the copyrights from his Living in the Material World album for the higher good. She closed her speech with a reference to the George Harrison Fund for UNICEF and the Fund’s newest investment in UNICEF Kid Power, which allows kids to get active and save lives using the world’s first wearable-for-good™
Following a standing ovation, Olivia traveled to the Morse School in nearby Cam details
In 1964, Italian photographer Emilio Lari was 24, newly arrived in London and looking for work. Back in Rome, he’d shot promotional stills on the set of Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow, starring Sofia Loren and Marcello Mastroianni, and for The Bobo, featuring Peter Sellers and Britt Ekland.
Now he was hoping to do the same in Britain. Fortunately, it didn’t take long for him to hear about a new film just going into production: A cheap black-and-white comedy meant to cash in on that latest fad, the Beatles. Lari went around to see the film’s director, Sellers’ old friend Richard Lester, and got invited to the first day of shooting. He was on the set of A Hard Day’s Night only that day, but Lester liked his photos and invited him to do more work on his next film, which turned out to be the Beatles’ Help!
In vivid color and crisp black and white, this book shares dozens of the results. There are great candid and posed shots of the Beatles, many unseen for years or never published, throughout. Musicians will enjoy the close-up images of the band with its famed guitars: George Harrison with his Gibson acoustic, John Lennon with his Rickenbacker, Paul McCartney with his violin-shaped details
A West Malling kebab house had something to twist and shout about, after a blue plaque was unveiled to mark its place in musical history.
John Lennon and Ringo Starr can be seen buying tickets at the former town news agency, now in the high street, in the opening of the Beatles’ 1967 film Magical Mystery Tour. Now the building is one of six in the town to have had its heritage marked with a blue plaque.
The Fab Four spent several days filming in the town, with the disused West Malling Airfield the most visible local location in the film. But high street shops also appear in a number of scenes. Minister for culture MP Tracey Crouch unveiled the plaque at a ceremony. Peter Cosier is the mastermind behind the scheme, which aims to bring the borough’s heritage to life by highlighting the places where important people from history once lived or worked.
The vinyl markers also have QR codes, allowing smartphone users to learn more about the history behind the plaques in 12 different languages. Mr Cosier said: “We are opening windows to the past to people who did important things locally and sometimes nationally, to learn more about our community and the culture we share. “There is much r details
He sang about being a Day Tripper with The Beatles. And on Saturday Sir Paul McCartney took a leaf out of his old song-writing notes when he and wife Nancy Shevell were seen enjoying a romantic Autumnal stroll in New York. Strolling through the Big Apple's sunny streets, the 73-year-old singer and his wife, 56, looked the picture of happiness as they enjoyed some quality time together in Manhattan.
Heading for a spot of lunch at the Surrey Hotel's Cafe Boulud, the former Beatle and music icon appeared to be in high spirits as he chatted to his wife of four years.
But despite wearing a pair of sunglasses, Sir Paul was obviously keen to keep the chill in the wind at bay as he wrapped up for the stroll through the city's sunny streets. Rocking a typically casual but on-point ensemble, the FourFiveSeconds hit-maker looked younger than his years.
Teaming a black Harrington-style jacket with a pair of navy chinos, the Knight of the Realm also sported a white and red scarf. Rounding his look off with a pair of green suede loafers, Sir Paul accessorised his look with a pair of retro shades. Nancy appeared to have coordinated her outfit with her husbands, as she teamed a pair of figure-hugging jeans with a details
Two Dutch Beatles fans are involved in a legal wrangle over their claim to own 504 tapes made during a Beatles recording session in 1969, the Volkskrant reported at the weekend.
The two men say the recordings were illegally taken from them by Dutch and British police 12 years ago and should be returned. They also want €700,000 in damages from the Dutch state in compensation for wrongful arrest.
The tapes feature members of the Beatles composing and in conversation during the Get Back sessions, which became the basis for the film Let it Be. The recordings were made on Nagra tape recorders and are thought to be the basis for a large number of bootlegs.
Stan Snelleman and Jos Remmerwaal say they bought the tapes from former Apple Records worker Nigel Oliver for the equivalent of €36,000 in 1992 after being outbid by Apple for other tapes at a memorabilia auction.
12 years later they were caught in police sting when Oliver got in touch again and claimed to have a serious buyer to take the tapes off their hands. In January 2003, Snelleman and Remmerswaal were arrested and charged with money laundering and fencing stolen property. The case against them was formally dropped in 2007.details
He was back for a sell-out concert earlier this year - but it wasn’t the first time Paul McCartney got back to where he once belonged.
Scouse superstar Paul returns regularly to Merseyside... The musical maestro and former Beatle has kept us all entertained over the years, both with the Beatles, on his own and with Wings. Not least in the 70s when he was a busy boy across the UK and indeed the world and, certainly, in his home town.
There was a UK Tour in ‘73 which saw him play two nights at the Liverpool Empire Theatre; his Wings All Over the World Tour in which he was back at the Empire in September ‘75 and his Wings UK Tour 1979 which he launched with his band members including lovely wife Linda in November for four nights at the Royal Court Theatre.
One lucky person who saw him then was Susan Lee, Liverpool ECHO print editor, who remembers: “As a 12-year-old my experience of going to gigs was fairly limited, which makes it all the more astonishing that one of my first – and that of a whole host of other Liverpool schoolkids – was to see an ex-Beatle.
“Paul McCartney came to town with his band Wings as part of a 19 date tour – and promptly put on details
Music’s greatest songwriting duo, Lennon/McCartney penned and released an estimated 180 songs together between 1962 and 1970, including the likes of ‘A Day in the Life’, ‘Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds’ and ‘A Hard Day's Night’. The partnership came to an end with The Beatles’ split in 1970 and, owing to the subsequently prickly relationship between the two, would never be revisited in the years prior to Lennon’s untimely death in 1980.
The tragic nature of Lennon’s passing undoubtedly played a major role in McCartney’s unwillingness to talk about his songwriting partner in the short time after his murder. But that tactic has naturally softened to the point where, in the past five years, the 73-year-old has followed a policy of openness in interviews about the dynamic of his and Lennon’s relationship. Having most recently told Billboard that Lennon’s “whole life was a cry for help” (more on that shortly), we’ve rounded up the key interviews that McCartney has given on Lennon in the past five years in order to piece together his contemporary take on his old friend.
Speaking on the US chat show Late Night, McCartne details
Linda McCartney may be best known as the late wife of Paul, but she was an artist in her own right, a celebrated photographer who shot iconic images of musicians like B. B. King and who became, in 1968, the first woman to land a cover of Rolling Stone. She was also the mother of four children: among them, the designer Stella McCartney and the photographer Mary McCartney, known for her candid-feeling portraits of eminent subjects like Queen Elizabeth II and total strangers (the latter she posts on her Instagram with the caption “#someone”).
Mary and Linda, who passed away from breast cancer in 1998, have individually shown their work many times: at London’s Victoria and Albert Museum (Linda); New York’s International Center of Photography (Linda); London’s Royal Opera House (Mary); and London’s National Portrait Gallery (both, separately). But never have their photographs appeared side by side.
Until now: On Friday, “Linda McCartney and Mary McCartney: Mother Daughter” opens at New York’s Gagosian Gallery. The idea for the show, Mary tells me from London by Skype, originated with the gallery, but it was a concept she’d been contemplating for some time. A details
Fuck “Don’t Pass Me By,” says Ringo. At least, that’s what we have to assume, now that he’s selling his copy of the White Album.
Earlier in the fall, we got wind that the drummer and sometimes-singer of famous rock’n’roll collective/enclave/project The Beatles would be auctioning off lots of his finest and most valuable memorabilia for charity. This was said to include a drum kit and guitars that he and his bandmates (singers, guitarists and songwriters John Lennon and George Harrison specifically, if those names mean anything to you) used back in their glory days.
Now, several Ringo-based items have hit Julien’s in time for the Christmas season, so parties interested in snagging a couple of Ringo’s World Music Award statues for the kids should head on over there now — as well as those interested in shelling out 60k and up for a copy of Ringo’s copy of the Beatles 1968 self-titled album, which was notoriously packaged all in white.
Apparently, Starr’s mono copy is usually thought to be the very first copy of the album ever to be pressed. It has a “Factory Sample, Not for Sale” sticker on it, and a “No.0000001” details
When disaster strikes, musicians respond the way they know best: with song. As composer Leonard Bernstein said three days after John F. Kennedy was assassinated, “This will be our reply to violence: to make music more intensely, more beautifully, more devotedly than ever before.” And as the dust of a violent tragedy settles, you’re likely to hear one tune in particular: the contemplative strains of John Lennon’s 1971 “Imagine,” which reached number three in the UK when it was first released and sailed to number one after Lennon’s murder in 1980. On Saturday, Coldplay opened their L.A. concert with “Imagine” in tribute to the victims of the terrorist attacks in Paris. (The band had planned to unveil new material from their upcoming album, but ended up performing an acoustic set of older songs out of respect.) That same night, a man lugged his grand piano to the street outside the Bataclan—the site of the deadliest shootings—and delivered an instrumental version of Lennon’s hit to quiet applause and the flash of iPhone cameras.
These latest covers extend a long tradition of reaching for “Imagine” in the wake of terrible world events. The r details
The history of the $2 million drum head
You may remember last week we told you that a drum head used by Ringo Starr had sold for more than $2 million at auction. Well here's the full details on this incredible purchase.
The 20" Remo head was used during the Beatles' Ed Sullivan debut and was sold at Julien's auction in Beverly Hills. It fetched $2.125 million (a mere £1.4 million) and was purchased by Indianapolis Colts owner, Jim Irsay. It will now sit amongst Irsay's considerable collection of rare guitars.
After the sale Remo Belli, founder of Remo, commented the price was so sky-high that the company 'couldn't even afford to buy our drumhead back!'
The head was used for the duration of the Beatles' first American tour including all three Ed Sullivan appearances, a concert at Washington Coliseum and two shows at New York City's Carnegie Hall and was featured on the album covers The Beatles Second Album and Something New.
After the Beatles' American tour, the drumhead was kept at Abbey Road Studios, London, until it was auctioned by Sotheby's in 1984 and sold to an Australian restaurateur named George Wilkins for just under $9,000.
By: Rich Chamberlain
Source: Musi details
Piers Hemmingsen’s soon-to-be published book, The Beatles in Canada: The Origins of Beatlemania, includes an entire chapter on Smiths Falls’ RCA Victor plant and its role in introducing North America to the British boy band.
“For me, Smiths Falls is the birthplace of The Beatles music in North America. A lot of people just don’t know it,” Hemmingsen said. He welcomed former plant staff and musicians to the Kinsmen Pavilion Nov. 12 for a pre-launch of his 444-page book. Hemmingsen embarked on the research for the book in 2009 with the hope of filling in the gaps before the Ed Sullivan Show in 1964. “The object of the book was to tell the true story of how Canada got The Beatles on the map ahead of the US,” the author said.
In 1962 The Beatles were up and coming with a fellow by the name of Paul White working in Canada to bring their sound to North America. His vision of what The Beatles could be, meant the nation received timely copies of every single the group came out with including their first single to hit Canada’s streets, ‘Love Me Do’. It was early in 1963 when this single was being produced in Smiths Falls and staff worked through the bitter cold details
Released 35 years ago today
It is, of course, impossible to separate the album from what happened immediately after it was released. In late November 1980, John Lennon made his musical return after five years of self-imposed retirement with Double Fantasy, a full-fledged collaboration with his wife, Yoko Ono; on December 8th of that year, he was murdered on his way home from a recording studio. Rather than being his comeback, Double Fantasy became Lennon's sweet, gentle farewell.
But it would have been a rock & roll event regardless. After a self-indulgent, eighteen-month "lost weekend," a separation from Ono and a few disappointing albums, Lennon had retreated into a life of domesticity in late 1975, devoting himself to being a househusband and a father to his son Sean.
In the spring of 1980, Lennon and Sean sailed to Bermuda for a brief vacation; there Lennon became intrigued by New Wave musicians like the Pretenders, Lene Lovich and Madness. And when he heard the B-52's song "Rock Lobster," he was spurred to action. "It sounds just like Ono's music," he told Rolling Stone, "so I said to myself, 'It's time to get out the old axe and wake the wife up!'"
Source: Rolling Stone