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It's one thing for an album to come along and press itself so deeply into the culture that little feels the same after its arrival, but what are the chances that that same album would have the most iconic LP artwork of all time?

So it goes with the Beatles' Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band and its wonderful swirl of visuals, ranging from that most distinguished assembly of personalities on its front cover courtesy of Pop artists Peter Blake and Jann Haworth, to some sleeve work by the Dutch design team the Fool, to Michael Cooper's photographs, to the grab-bag of cut-out treasures that accompanied the album. Art dealer Robert Fraser helmed the proceedings as art director, with the most legendary cover-art shoot in rock history transpiring 50th years ago on March 30th. The cover was lavishly pricey to produce, but it solidified the Beatles' mythic status for all time.

Here are 10 things you might not know about the iconic look of Sgt. Pepper.

1. Paul McCartney spearheaded the cover concept. … This was a period when McCartney was asserting himself more and more when it came to the Beatles' career decisions, a trend that would continue for the remainder of their time together. He produced ink dr details

"You say stop and I say go go go, oh no" — Paul McCartney and John Lennon.

On Wednesday, Paul McCartney responded to Sony/ATV's suggestion that he brought an "unripe" lawsuit seeking confirmation he'll reclaim rights to Beatles songs next year. In a letter to the judge, his lawyer Michael Jacobs writes, "Delay would not simplify the parties' dispute, but it would prejudice McCartney. As long as Sony/ATV refuses to disavow any right to sue for breach of contract, McCartney has a cloud over the title to his works, which devalues his rights."

In reaction to the lawsuit, Sony sent its own letter to the judge in anticipation of a conference that would lay out a forthcoming motion to dismiss.

Sony's lawyer wrote that the publisher had made no statement challenging the validity of McCartney's termination notices, that the Duran Duran case was still pending on appeal and that without an outcome, McCartney "impermissibly seeks an advisory opinion on a hypothetical claim."

On behalf of McCartney, Jacobs retorts, "By seeking to dismiss this lawsuit, Sony/ATV intends to leave McCartney in suspense. Is he exposed to claims for damages if he relies on his undisputed rights under U.S. copyright law or not details

Get ready for some new music from Paul McCartney.

“I'm making a new album, which is great fun. I'm in the middle of that,” McCartney said during an interview with BBC Radio 6's Matt Everitt on Saturday (March 25).

The new set is being produced by Greg Kurstin. “I'm working with a producer who I first worked with two years ago on a thing, a piece of music I'm doing for an animated film,” McCartney said.

“And since then he went on to work with Beck and got best album of the year,” he continued. “Then he went on to work with Adele. He just got song of the year, record of the year with Adele. And just got producer of the year. So my only worry is people are going to go, 'Uhhhhh, there's Paul going with the flavor of the month.’ You know, I suppose you always think the worst of it. But he's a great guy. Greg is musical and he's great to work with.”

McCartney concluded the interview by talking about his upcoming tour plans in Japan. A representative for the artist would not comment when asked by Billboard if more tour dates would be announced soon.

By: Steve Mrinucci

Source: Billboard

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A few words about Pete Shotton… - Monday, March 27, 2017

It wasn’t easy being John Lennon’s friend, and Yoko didn’t make things any easier.

“If anyone was doing the hanging on, it was John. He hung on to me, always had done. He always made me feel special, made it clear he was desperate for my company, especially when he was depressed and fed up, which he was for many years. He used to say to me: ’I don’t want to be a Beatle any more, stuck in a bag marked Beatle. I want to open the bag and let the Beatles out. I want to be myself.’” – Pete Shotton (as told to Hunter Davies)

As anyone who’s ever tried it will tell you, it’s hard to be a friend. However close or long term a friendship, there are always moments when a friendship is tested by actions or circumstances that make or break the friendship. In many, if not most, cases friendships fail these tests. Those few that survive (one hesitates to use the word pass, as friendships are acts of endurance rather than one-off events like tests) can reach a level of intimacy and trust that provide the persons involved with comfort on the long, hard road of life.

But how does one stay that kind of friend when that friend becomes one of the most famous p details

Sir Paul McCartney has revealed that he and John Lennon wrote their best tracks while sitting ‘opposite each other on twin beds’. The Beatles star recalled moments where the two of them would ‘spin off each other’ as they came up with new melodies.

Asked about his experience of writing music, the 74-year-old, who formed the Beatles in 1960 with Lennon, George Harrison and Ringo Starr, said: ‘There’s a million ways to write, but the way I always used to write was with John and it would be across from each other, either in a hotel bedroom on the twin beds, with an acoustic guitar and we’re just looking at each other. 

‘He’d make up something, I’d make up something and we’d just spin off each other. ‘It’s always my big memory, is seeing John there, him being right-handed, me being left-handed, it felt to me like I was looking in a mirror.’ 

He said that the reason they worked so well together was because they had grown up together, and therefore had ‘developed a way of working’. Such was his fondness for that method that when it came to writing his final album of the 80s, Flowers In The Dirt, with Elvis details

The 10 Worst Beatles Songs - Sunday, March 26, 2017

Yes, we know that The Beatles are great. Yes, they are unarguably the most import band in musical history, achieved more in their brief period together as any band have before or since, and released a shed load of songs that are now stitched firmly into our cultural heritage.

Yes, John Lennon is one of the UK’s true icons, Paul McCartney is the most beloved and revered songwriter of our time, George Harrison is an underrated genius and Ringo – erm- narrated Thomas the Tank Engine.

We know all of this, but that doesn’t mean everything they released was great, does it? For every ‘A Day In The Life’ there is the repetitive horrors of ‘Why Don’t We Do It in the Road?’ For every ‘In My Life’ there is the bafflingly pointless ‘Flying’. For every ‘Dear Prudence’ there is the just plain awful ‘Piggies’, a song that somehow managed to inspire a mass murder.

No band can ever be that incredibly visionary, delicious and just plain brilliant the entire time so it’s time to shine a light on the very worst that The Fab Four has to offer. Here are the 10 worst Beatles songs.

10) ‘Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da’< details

Tributes have been paid to Pete Shotton, the best friend of John Lennon, who has died aged 75.

It is thought he died from a heart attack at his home in Knutsford, Cheshire and funeral arrangements are currently being made.

Pete attended Dovedale Primary School and Quarry Bank High School alongside the future Beatle, and he later joined John – as a washboard player – in The Quarrymen. At school the inseparable friends came to be known as “Shennon and Lotton” or “Lotton and Shennon.”

Pete, with the financial backing of his long-time friend, bought a supermarket in Hayling Island, near Portsmouth, and later founded and built up the successful Fatty Arbuckle’s chain of restaurants, which he sold in the early 2000s. Pete was the co-author of John Lennon: In My Life, which was published in 1983, and later republished as The Beatles, Lennon and Me.

He remained close to John during The Beatles’ heyday, and his step son, Phillip Gouldbourn, told the ECHO: “One thing he was really proud of was that he was at times the only person, outside The Beatles and the producer, engineer and technicians, who was allowed in the studio with the band when they were r details

It was a place where John Lennon was to bring his own children to share his love of long summers in the Highlands. The ex-Beatle was to be a regular visitor to Durness in Sutherland during his younger years after his dear Aunt Mater remarried a dentist called Bert who owned a home that overlooked Sango Bay.

John, who travelled north with his cousin Stanley Parks, who lived in Edinburgh and later in Largs, would head to the coast for weeks on end, often being dragged into helping his uncle fix up the house.

But fishing, walking and shooting were the norm, Parks later recalled, with a young Lennon heading up into the hills on his own. The musician has also been remembered for his high jinks in the Highlands, with the singer tying seaweed to shop doors to stop workers from leaving.

“The family party roughed it in a primitive farmhouse lit by oil lamp and candles and noisy with the screeches of Mater’s pet parrot,” wrote Philip Norman in his biography John Lennon: The Life. The house where Lennon holidayed at Sangomore, a settlement at Durness, was demolished around four years a go with a new property built by the owners.A plaque on the wall of the property marks the association with the Be details

It was one of the most important days in pop history and in case you weren’t there it’s being recreated 60 years on.

When St Peter’s Church in Woolton hosted a fete on the afternoon of July 6, 1957, the decision to have local bands performing for the amusement of the crowds led to a meeting which changed the direction of music in this country.

This was the day when a young Paul McCartney was introduced to a 16-year-old John Lennon , who was there with his group The Quarrymen. To mark the diamond jubilee of the friendship which led to The Beatles being formed just a few years later, the fete is being staged again for a 21st Century crowd.

The Quarrymen - still touring today - have already confirmed for the event. Like in 1957, they will perform on the back of a flatbed truck on a tour of Woolton Village with Doug Chadwick, the man who was behind the wheel on that momentous day when the band sang from a similar vehicle.

Julia Baird, John Lennon’s sister who was also in attendance at the original fete, will judge the children’s fancy dress competition.

As is traditional with summer fetes, the Rose Queen will be crowned and visitors can also tuck in to foods from details

It was 50 years ago today — almost — that Sgt. Pepper taught the band to play.

The English city of Liverpool is getting set to celebrate the half-centenary of “Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band,” one of the most influential albums by local heroes The Beatles.

The city announced Wednesday that it has commissioned 13 artists to create works based on the album's 13 tracks. They include choreographer Mark Morris' dance tribute to the title song, cabaret artist Meow Meow's “outlandish procession” based on “Lovely Rita” and a mural by U.S. artist Judy Chicago inspired by “Fixing a Hole.”

There will also be a singalong by 64 choirs of the jaunty “When I'm Sixty-Four.”

The works will have their world premieres at venues across Liverpool between May 25 and June 16. On June 1 — the anniversary of the album's release — the city will host a fireworks extravaganza by French pyrotechnic artist Christophe Berthonneau.

By the second half of the 1960s, The Beatles had tired of touring. They played their last live concert in August 1966 and devoted their energies and creativity to the studio. “Sgt. Pepper” w details

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