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Beatles 50th Blog

The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today: June 26, 1966

Live: Ernst Merck Halle, Hamburg

The Beatle's train pulled into the central station in Hamburg a little after 6:00 am on June 26th. It was the first time any member of the group had set foot in the city since January 1963, when - as relative nobodies - they had completed their fortnight's Christmas stint at the Star Club.

On hand at the station, and backstage before their two shows at the Ernst Merck Halle, were many faces from the past, ranging from Astrid Kirchherr to Bert Kaempfert and even Bettina Derlien, the buxom, blond barmaid from the Star Club.

The Beatles played two shows at the city's Ernst Merck Halle on Jungtusstrasse, each of which was seen by 5,600 people. A press conference was held between the sets. Forty-four people were arrested for rioting during the shows, both inside and outside the venue.

The group played the same 11 songs that constituted their standard set throughout the tour: Rock And Roll Music, She's A Woman, If I Needed Someone, Day Tripper, Baby's In Black, I Feel Fine, Yesterday, I Wanna Be Your Man, Nowhere Man, Paperback Writer and I'm Down. The Ernst Merck Hall, on Hamburg's Jungiusstraße, was later demolished, but not before a number of major bands including Queen and Pink Floyd performed there.

After the shows John Lennon and Paul McCartney paid a nostalgic visit to the Reeperbahn where they visited a number of people and places from their past.

The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today: June 25, 1966

Live: Grugahalle, Essen, Germany

In the morning The Beatles were driven in a fleet of Mercedes cars, flanked by police on motorcycles, to Munich railway station. From there a special train took The Beatles from Munich to Essen for two shows at the Grugahalle.

The train had been used in the previous year by Queen Elizabeth II during her royal visit to West Germany. The Beatles were each given a suite of rooms on board, as were their five-man entourage.

They played two concerts at the Grugahalle, during which they performed the same 11 songs: Rock And Roll Music, She's A Woman, If I Needed Someone, Day Tripper, Baby's In Black, I Feel Fine, Yesterday, I Wanna Be Your Man, Nowhere Man, Paperback Writer and I'm Down.

Between the two shows The Beatles held a press conference and enjoyed a meal in their dressing room. Following their second performance at the Grugahalle they boarded the train once more to travel to Hamburg, arriving at around 2am.

The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today: June 24, 1966

Live: Circus-Krone-Bau, Munich, Germany

The Beatles' brief 1966 tour of West Germany, Japan and the Philippines began on this day, with two concerts at the Circus-Krone-Bau in Munich, Germany.

The shows took place at 5.15pm and 9pm. The second show was filmed by German television network Zweites Deutsches Fernsehen (ZDF), and followed a brief afternoon rehearsal set for the cameras. The footage was shown as Die Beatles on channel two on Tuesday 5 July, from 8-8.45pm.

Also appearing on the bill were Cliff Bennett and The Rebel Rousers, The Rattles and Peter and Gordon. The German leg of the tour was known as the Bravo Blitztournee, and was sponsored by the entertainment magazine Bravo.

The Beatles' set throughout the tour consisted of 11 songs: Rock And Roll Music, She's A Woman, If I Needed Someone, Day Tripper, Baby's In Black, I Feel Fine, Yesterday, I Wanna Be Your Man, Nowhere Man, Paperback Write and I'm Down.

For these first dates, the group's recent absence from live performance was apparent. George Harrison introduced Yesterday as being from Beatles For Sale, and I'm Down was briefly delayed by an on-stage conference between John Lennon, Paul McCartney and Harrison about lyrics in the opening verse. In spite of this, McCartney managed to get each verse wrong.

Source: Beatles Bible

The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today: June 23, 1966

On June 23rd 1966, the Beatles flew from London Airport to Munich for a three-city tour of West Germany. For promotional purposes, the German leg of their 1966 tour would be called 'Bravo-Beatles-Blitztournee.' The opening acts on this tour of Munich, Essen and Hamburg included The Rattles, Peter and Gordon, and Cliff And The Rebel Rousers.

The Beatles and their entourage arrived in Munich at noon on the 23rd, holding a press conference upon their arrival at the Hotel Bayerischer Hof, and granting the following interview which was filmed for television.

As part of their arrival, each of the Beatles were given elaborately crafted lederhosen, the traditional leather German shorts which remain popular in the region and are culturally associated with masculinity.

The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today: June 22, 1966

Studio Three (control room), EMI Studios, Abbey Road

Recording for the Revolver album had been completed the day before. During this final session, mono and stereo mixes of six songs were made to complete the album.

The session began at 7pm and finished at 1.30am the next morning. Two mono mixes of Eleanor Rigby were the first to be made, followed by one of She Said She Said and one of Good Day Sunshine. With those the mono album was ready to be banded and mastered, ahead of its  August 5th, 1966 release.

The second half of the session was devoted to stereo mixes. Eleanor RIgby, She Said She Said and Good Day Sunshine were each mixed in a single attempt, followed by two mixes of Yellow Submarine.

Tomorrow Never Knows proved more problematic, and took six attempts before a satisfactory stereo mix was achieved. The session ended with one mix of Got To Get You Into My Life.

With that, work on The Beatles' 1966 album Revolver, held by many to be their finest collection of songs, was complete.

 

The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today: June 21, 1966

Studio Two, EMI Studios, Abbey Road

Having spent much of the day working on mono and stereo mixes for six Revolver songs, The Beatles began a night-time session in which they completed a new song from scratch.

 The session for She Said She Said began at 7pm and ended at 3.45am the following morning. It was the only Revolver song to be completed within a single session.

The Beatles spent much of the session rehearsing the song, with at least 25 attempts before the first proper recording attempt. They then taped the rhythm track in three takes. At one point Paul McCartney walked out of the studio following an argument, leading to speculation that George Harrison played bass guitar on the song.

I like the title She Said She Said, which I think was made up on the session. John brought it in pretty much finished, I think. I'm not sure but I think it was one of the only Beatle records I never played on. I think we'd had a barney or something and I said, 'Oh, fuck you!' and they said, 'Well, we'll do it.' I think George played bass.
Paul McCartney
Many Years From Now, Barry Miles

The rhythm track had drums, guitar and bass. Onto this John Lennon added his lead vocals, and Lennon and Harrison overdubbed backing vocals. With the four-track tape full, a reduction mix was made, two which Harrison added lead guitar and Lennon added an organ part.

Three mono mixes were then made, although these were discarded in favour of a final mix made on the following day.
 
Source: Beatles Bible
The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today: June 20, 1966

Studio One, EMI Studios, London

A new mono mix of "Got To Get You Into My Life" doubling the brass sound of previous versions, prepared between 6:00 and 8:30 pm.

 

The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today: June 19, 1966

The #1 song in the US on June 19, 1966

 

The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today: June 18, 1966

Paul McCartney turns 24 today - 50 years ago. (An appearance on ‘Thank Your Lucky Stars’ was made.)

 

The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today: June 17, 1966

Studio Two, EMI Studios, London

A 7:00 pm to 1:30 am session during which "Here, There And Everywhere" received an additional Paul McCartney vocal overdub, backing his own lead, and an extra guitar passage was added onto "Got To Get You Into My Life". The evening ended with five new mono mixes of the latter recording and one of the former.