50th Blog

The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today : Wednesday, October 23, 1963-

Studio Two, EMI Studios, London

The Beatles' final input to their second album, recording the 16th take of "I Wanna Be Your Man" and then watching as George Martin and Norman Smith mixed this, "Little Child" and "Hold Me Tight" into mono, all done between 10:00 am and 1:00 pm.

After lunch, the group flew to Sweden for their first foreign tour.

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The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today : Tuesday, October 22, 1963-

The Beatles had a day off.

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The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today : Monday, October 21, 1963-

Studio One, EMI Studios, London

Mono mixing and editing of "This Boy" and mono and stero mixing of "I Want To Hold Your Hand", effected by George Martin from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm. The Beatles may well have attended.

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The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today : Sunday, October 20, 1963-

Alpha Television Studios, Aston, Birmingham

Another bill-topping appearance on ABC Television's "Thank Your Lucky Stars", taped during the afternoon and transmitted 5:50-6:35 pm on Saturday, October 26th.

In this edition they mimed to an unprecedented three numbers, one more than usual, two more than most other acts, - "All My Loving", "Money (That's What I Want)" and "She Loves You". The first two formed an exclusive  glimpse of "With The Beatles", not issued until November 22nd. TYLS producer Philip Jones had acquired advanced acetate pressings of some of the album tracks and persuaded Brian Epstein to allow him first opportunity to plug them.

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The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today : Saturday, October 19, 1963-

The Beatles - Pavilion Gardens Ballroom, Buxton

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The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today : Friday, October 18, 1963-

Studio Four, Granada TV Centre, Manchester

Another appearance on Scene At 6:30, taped during the early afternoon at Granada Television and transmitted in this evening's programme, 6:30-7:00 pm. The Beatles mimed to "She Loves You".

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The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today : Thursday, October 17, 1963-

Studio Two, EMI Studios, London

Two sessions, 2:30-5:30 and 7:00-10:00 pm, saw the Beatles cater for three different projects, they attempted to improve a recording for the new album, they taped the A-and B-sides of their fifth single, and also recorded some wacky horseplay for "The Beatles' Christmas Record", to be distributed free-of-charge exclusively to members of their Official Fan Club on December 9th. This was the first of seven such discs they would make.

These sessions also marked the dawn of a new era for the Beatles at EMI: four-track recording, ushering in entirely new recording processes and allowing the group to use the facility more experimentally. No longer would they need to record all instruments live in the studio, although, on occasions, they did continue to do just this.

The two sides of the next single, "I Want To Hold Your Hand", and the exquisite three-part harmony song "This Boy", both of them progressive Lennon-McCartney numbers, were the first to benefit from four-track and each was perfected in 17 takes. Later, though, despite the better facilities, they gave up trying to perfect "You Really Got A Hold On Me" after attempting to one final take, it's 12th.

The new single was issued in Britain on Friday, November 29th, crashing into the chart while "She Loves You" was enjoying its second spell at the top. Within a week it had replaced its predecessor, and the Beatles were holding numbers one and two, in  addition to numbers one and two in the LP Chart. "I Want To Hold Your Hand" was also critically important in another direction: it broke the group into the US market, paving the way for a 1964 that would eclipse even 1963 in terms of record sales and all-encompassing Beatlemania.

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The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today : Wednesday, October 16, 1963-

Playhouse Theatre, London

The Beatles 4th and last session for the Sunday morning BBC Radio Light Programme pop show, "Easy Beat". Owing to the incredible demands on their time, and fearing for their safety, Brian Epstein told the BBC that he would no longer permit the group to appear in audience radio shows - jus as he had decided that, for British concerts, they would play only theatres or venues with fixed seating, no more ballrooms. An instant casualty of this decision was a 5th booking for "Easy Beat", which would have taken place on Wednesday, December 4th, for transmission on the 8th.

This show was recorded at the Playhouse Theatre from 9:00 to 10:00 pm, with a prior rehearsal from 4:00 pm. The Beatles performed "I Saw Her Standing There", "Love Me Do", "Please Please Me", "From Me To You", "and "She Loves You", the last four songs being the group's singles to date, in the correct order. It was broadcast on Sunday, October 20th, from 10:31 to 11:30 am.

While at the Playhouse, the Beatles were also interviewed by reporter Peter Woods about the announcement, made the previous day, that they had been invited to perform in the Royal Variety Show on November 4th. The interview, in which the group cleverly parried Woods' clearly condescending tones, was broadcast on the Light Programme's main evening news bulletin (7:00 to 7:31 pm) Radio Nesreel.

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The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today : Tuesday, October 15, 1963-

The Beatles - Floral Hall, Southport

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The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today : Monday, October 14, 1963-

The Beatles did not perform on this date.

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