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You've never heard The Beatles sound like this before - Wednesday, September 17, 2014

You've never heard The Beatles sound like this before


"If you're under 40, there's a good chance you've never heard the Beatles' music the way it sounded in the 1960s. All of their music, every note of it, was recorded on analog tape -- but all of the Beatles' CDs and LPs mastered after 1986 were sourced from digital masters. Even the 2012 remastered stereo LPs were cut from digital masters. So the big news here is the 2014 remastered mono Beatles LPs are the first to be 100 percent all-analog albums since the 1980s. If you've never heard the band's older LPs, the new mono, 180-gram LPs will knock you for a loop. I have the limited-edition "The Beatles in Mono" box set, but the mono LPs are also available individually.

To put some perspective on why I'm making a big deal about this, almost all new LPs by today's bands are mastered from digital sources, even when they were originally analog recordings! Digital is cheaper and faster technology. Analog tapes are delicate, locating an analog tape machine in tip top condition isn't easy, and mastering all-analog LPs can be a big hassle. Generations of engineers have grown up with digital -- they don't always have the skill set required to get the best out of analog tapes.

 

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Yoko Ono Brings the John Lennon Educational Tour Bus to Harlem - Wednesday, September 17, 2014


"I love you and I'm so glad that I'm here today," Yoko Ono told an auditorium full of elementary schoolers, teachers, and special guests at New York City's Patrick Henry Prep this morning. The 81-year-old visited the East Harlem school along with the John Lennon Educational Tour Bus, a mobile studio that's gone around the world since 1998, letting kids learn about songwriting, recording, and music videos, with many getting the opportunity to lay down their own tracks.

PS 171 was the perfect stop for Ono and the bus. The pre-K to 8th grade school is focused on social justice, arts education, and previously hosted a Beatles festival featuring Sid Bernstein, the promoter who organized the Fab Four's first visit to America. Ono took to the small stage following brief speeches by the PS 171 staff, executives from the Berklee College of Music and SESAC, and New York City Council Member Daniel Dromm, as well as a performance of Lennon's "Instant Karma" by a multi-cultural group of students that had everyone singing along, from teachers down to the pre-K kids.

 

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"George Harrison Week" on Conan - Wednesday, September 17, 2014

During the week of September 22nd, Conan will feature daily performances by artists including Beck, Norah Jones and Dhani Harrison to celebrate the music of George Harrison by singing one of his songs. "George Harrison Week" coincides with the release of the box set, The Apple Years: 1968-75 – also due out September 22nd – which compiles the Beatle's first six solo albums. More artists to perform on Conan have yet to be announced.

 In other celebratory Harrison news, the Beatle's legacy will also be celebrated the week after the Conan engagement at an event dubbed George Fest: A Night to Celebrate the Music of George Harrison. Scheduled to take place at Los Angeles' El Rey Theatre on September 28th, the event will feature appearances by Conan performers Dhani Harrison and Norah Jones, as well as Brian Wilson, the Killers' Brandon Flowers, "Weird Al" Yankovic and members of the Flaming Lips, Weezer, Heart, Spoon, the Strokes, Velvet Revolver and more. One-hundred percent of the proceeds from ticket sales to the event benefit Sweet Relief, a charity that aids career musicians struggling to make ends meet.

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Monroe artist creates quirky illustrations depicting Beatles' tunes - Monday, September 15, 2014

Centenary College’s Meadows Museum of Art will open a Beatles exhibition Saturday featuring illustrations by Enoch Doyle Jeter.

Jeter is artist-in-residence at the University of Louisiana at Monroe’s School of Visual and Performing Arts.

The 14 prints interpret every song on the “With the Beatles” album. They’re featured in the new John Lennon biography “She Loves You.” Jeter says he was given a lot of latitude by the author, Jude Southerland Kessler.

“My job was to illustrate visually the songs by the Beatles on that album ‘With the Beatles.’ For instance, you’ll see illustrations for ‘She’s Got the Devil in Her Heart’ and ‘Roll over Beethoven.’ I had to use my imagination and come up with some quirky little fun ideas,” Jeter said.

Jeter, 61, says he’s been listening to the Beatles forever. He tried not to listen to the “With the Beatles” album but a couple times so he could bring a fresh perspective to the artwork. For more than a year, the printmaking instructor collected images to inspire his drawings.

 

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Paul McCartney’s ‘Hope’ is confirmed for release - Monday, September 15, 2014

From the biggest entertainment release of the year ‘Destiny’ - Paul McCartney’s original track, ‘Hope’, is confirmed for release 

He has written countless hit singles, orchestral scores, released electronica albums, film theme songs and changed the world with his music. Listed by the Guinness Book of World Records as the World’s Most Successful Composer and Recording Artist of All Time, Paul McCartney has now added another first to his impressive list. No stranger to being involved with hotly anticipated releases, Paul has now entered a new genre all together.

This week saw the release of the most highly anticipated video game of the year – Destiny. Years in the making Destiny is one of the biggest entertainment launches of 2014. Earlier this week fans were queuing through the night to get their first glimpse.  Stores across the world opened early in order to meet the demand. Made by Bungie, the studio behind Halo, and published by Activision, the company that brought you Call of Duty, Destiny is expected to change the gaming industry. The hype surrounding this release demonstrates how the interactive entertainment industry is overtaking Hollywood.

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You can now watch the 'lost' Beatles cartoon series on YouTube - Saturday, September 13, 2014

The 1968 feature Yellow Submarine was a landmark in the popular perception of animation as a legitimate art form, but even as the Beatles were lending their likenesses to that groundbreaking work, they were also appearing in a considerably less advanced example of the form. A cheaply made cartoon series called The Beatles ran on ABC from 1965 to 1969, and while its shabby production quality has resulted in it being largely forgotten outside of hardcore Beatles fandom, as Flavorwire notes, a YouTube account called Beatles Planet has made all 39 episodes available for curious viewers.

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Gimme Five: Forgotten George Harrison gems from The Apple Years - Saturday, September 13, 2014

News of a forthcoming multi-disc box set titled George Harrison: The Apple Years 1968-75 led to renewed praise for charttopping early-period solo moments like “My Sweet Lord” and “Give Me Love.” It’s perhaps understandable, since those are two of Harrison’s best-known songs apart from the Beatles. It doesn’t mean they’re his best songs, though. In fact, there’s far more complexity to be found, even inside well-trod No. 1 albums like 1970’s All Things Must Pass and 1973’s Living in the Material World — to say nothing oflesser-celebrated moments like 1974’s Dark Horse. Harrison’s catalog, even more than a decade after his early passing, is widely underappeciated outside of the radio hits, a grievous thing. Witness these five often-forgotten gems, each of them featured on George Harrison: The Apple Years 1968-75, due September 23, 2014 … “I’D HAVE YOU ANYTIME,” (ALL THINGS MUST PASS, 1970): Every bit as moving as Abbey Road triumphs like “Something,” with a Beatle-ish guitar signature and a lyrical assist by Bob Dylan.

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Big bad Beatle ballad: Here’s Destiny’s theme song from Paul McCartney - Thursday, September 11, 2014

Publisher Activision spent $500 million making and promoting Destiny, and you can now hear the Paul McCartney song that some of that money paid for. The former member of The Beatles worked with developer Bungie on a theme song for the massively multiplayer sci-fi shooter, and you can hear it over the end credits when you beat the game. The tune features the phrase “hope for the future” several times as well as references to “our destiny.” So, yeah, it’s not exactly “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.”  An original song from McCartney is a testament to both how much Activision spent on Destiny as well as how games are taking cues from Hollywood. Movies have long had celebrity musicians write and record original tracks, but games have rarely had money to do the same.

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Watch Beatles fans recreating iconic album cover on Abbey Road crossing as studio launches live feed - Thursday, September 11, 2014

Now, 45 years later, the famous zebra crossing is not only an English Heritage site, but the studio where the LP was recorded has set up a live feed of the crossing . It has become a shrine for Beatles fans worldwide to visit - and annoy traffic. You don't have to wait long to witness faithful pilgrims tramping along Abbey Road to use the the same zebra crossing that John, Paul, George and Ringo used for the cover of the Abbey Road album, released in September, 1969. Groups of friends or tour parties gather either side of the road and start snapping. Then the fun begins. Some try to use the crossing in fours - like the Beatles - stopping mid-way for pals to take a precious snap. Others abuse the crossing mercilessly, crossing time after time and posing ridiculously, much to the frustration of the motorists they are delaying. Meanwhile in the foreground, fans can be seen snapping the studio building where the album was recorded. Many feel obliged to leave their names behind, which is why the studio's outside wall is famously repainted every three months.

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Beatles expert to discuss Fab Four at Metairie event - Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Screaming fans, packed stadiums and songs we all know by heart were part of the craze known as Beatlemania. To celebrate everything Beatles, native New Orleanian and internationally recognized Beatles authority Bruce Spizer will discuss the Fab Four on Oct. 7 beginning at 7 p.m. at the East Bank Regional Library, 4747 West Napoleon Ave., Metairie. Spizer has written eight books about the Beatles and has served as a consultant for EMI and Apple Records for their CD re-releases of the American configurations of the Beatles catalogue. He has also written questions for a special Beatles "Trivial Pursuit" board game, and has appeared on national television news shows and radio shows. This event is free and open to the public.  Registration is not required. Banned books What do "To Kill A Mockingbird," "Slaugterhouse Five" and "The Perks of Being a Wallflower" have in common?  Each of these books along with many others has been on a "banned book" list at one time or another.

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