The Beatles took a break today.
The Beatles took a break today.
A Sunday TV taping for ABC Television, but not this time for "Thank your lucky stars" - this appearance was on the variety show "Big Night Out", hosted by Mike and Bernie Winters. (It was the first of four Beatles TV engagements with the comedian brothers)
Fellow guests in this edition included Billy Dainty, Patsy Ann Noble and Lionel Blair. Following daytime rehearsals, the show was taped during the evening on the main stage at ABC's Manchester Studio, before an audience of 600, the Beatles miming to three songs "From me to you", "She loves you", and "Twist and Shout". It was transmitted across most of the ITV network, 7:40 to 8:30 pm. on Saturday, September 7th.
Note: The Beatles had originally been requested to tape their "Big Night Out" debut on Sunday, August 18th, for Saturday, August 24th transmission, but their diary could not accommodate this.
The Mercy Sound was well received as a sharply-observed documentary by critics and public alike, and at least 2 requests for copy prints were received, and complied with one being presented to the Lord Mayor of Liverpool for preservation in the city archive, the other going to what has siince become known as the National Film Archive, in London. Extracts have also been fed into numerous subsequent programs and documentaries around the world. And sound-only excerpts from the Beatles' speech element were also broadcast on radio - in the home service program "Pick of the week" on Friday, October 11, 1963.
One further extract transmission from "The Mersey Sound" as made in January 1964, a very important one, for it served as the Beatles' television debut in the USA, outside of news coverage.
The Beatles filmed outside Ringo's house, 10 Admiral Grove, Liverpool S. Ringo was filmed coming out through the front door, battling his way through a horde of kids (most of whom loooked around seven-years-old and seemed to have been put there by the television crew) and getting into George's open-top sports car, which then sped away with kids hanging onto the back. (Paul and John were at this shoot too, but did not participate in the sequence used). Ringo then shot a solo scene, in which - to realize his oft-stated long-term aspiration to become a ladies' hairdresser - was filmed walking along a line of women sitting under hair dryers in the salon situated within Horne Bros. clothing store in Lord Street, Liverpool City Centre.
During production, the documentary went under the working title "The Beatles", but this was altered before transmission to "The Mersey Sound", a more accurate reflection of its content, which also featured footage of an interview with many other groups and participants in the local beat scene. The first broadcast of Don Haworth's film was on Wednesday, October 9, 1963, between 10:10 and 10:40 pm, although it was screened only in London and the north on this occasion. A national transmission then took place on Wednesday, November 13, 1963 between 7:10 and 7:40 pm. Executives of the commercial station ATV were upset at the scheduling of the October 9th broadcast, being only four days before the Beatles would star in that comany's live variety show "Val Parnell's Saturday Night At the London Palladium", and they made their anger clear to Brian Epstein.
The Beatles filmed walking on the top deck of a ferry boat travelling between Liverpool Pier Head and Wallasey, signing autographs and looking over the bow. Then they shot footage at Speke Airport, South Liverpool, where they acted out an airport arrival, descending the steps of an airplane.
Again from 9:30 am, the Beatles filmed in a dressing room at the BBC's Dickenson Road premises in Manchester, frankly discussing their past and their aims and hopes for the future, considering that the present boom probably couldn't last much longer. They were also filmed applying theatrical make-up, as if they were about to go on stage for the previous day's "concert" shoot, and intently walking around backstage with their guitars, as if they were about to make a BBC television appearance.
Location filming in Southport, Manchester and Liverpool
A six-night residency - two "houses" per night in Southport, just up the coast from Liverpool. The Beatles' repertoire comprised "Roll Over Beethoven", "Thank you Girl", "Chains", "A Taste of Honey", "She Loves You", "Baby, It's You", "From Me To You", " Boys", "I Saw Her Standing There", and "Twist and Shout".
From Tuesday to Friday, the Beatles filmed a number of contributions to a 30 minute sociological documentary being made by Manchester-based BBC TV producer Don Haworth, aiming to capture the essence and atmosphere of the "Mersey Beat" boom. After initial talks with Brian Epstein, Haworth had met the Beatles on July 21st and discussed the production, promising them the opportunity of being able to discuss themselves more seriously than in the somewhat flip fashion typical of the usual pop TV programs. After a meeting with the Beatles' contract, which also precluded them from appearing in "Beat City", a documentary on the subject being made at the same time by ITV company Associated-Rediffusion.
The Beatles first filming took place at 9:30 am today. Requiring live action footage of the group, Don Haworth booked time at the Little Theatre in Hoghton Street, Southport, where the group played on stage without an audience. The film was then intercut with hysterical audience footage shot the previous night at the Beatles' Odeon show. This morning the Beatles performed "Twist and Shout" and "She Loves You", dressed in grey collarless suits. Then, in black collarless suites and with a different curtain behind them, they played "Love Me Do", although the EMI disc recording was later dubbed onto the film, replacing the live music performance.
The Beatles - Odeon Cinema, Southport
The Beatles - ABC Theatre, Blackpool
Southern Independent Television Centre, Northam, Southampton, Hampshire
Six nights in Bournemouth, two shows each. It was during this week, athe their hotel in town, the Palace Court, that photographer Robert Freeman took the "half-shadow" cover photo for their next album, "With The Beatles".
On Wednesday, editing and mono mixing for the new LP took place back at EMI Studios, of songs (There's a devil in her heart), "Money (That's all I want)", "You really got a hold on me", "Please Mister Postman", "Till there was you", "Roll Over Beethoven", "All my Loving", and "It won't be long". The work was carried out from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm and 2:00-5:30 pm, although the Beatles may have been present during the first session and part of the second, but they would have left by mid-afternoon to be back in Bournemouth by the evening.
On Thursday (lunchtime), the Beatles (again with Freeman) drove across to the Southampton studios of Southern Television, where - miming to "She Loves You", they taped an appearance on Southern's local news-magazine program, "Day By Day", broadcast that same evening between 5:55 and 6:40 pm.