Beatles News

Like a lot of music executives, Herb Alpert -- whose cover of the Beatles' Michelle" from his upcoming album Music Vol. 1 is premiering exclusively below -- has some regrets when it comes to the Fab Four.

"When people ask me, 'Do you regret anything,' I was thinking, man, in 1962, after A&M (Records) started, the Beatles were hunting for a record company," Alpert tells Billboard. "They were on VeeJay for a while and I guess nobody really was coming to the party. I was thinking, 'Man, if I had flown over to London just to see if we could do something...' but the timing was off. I didn't get them at that moment. I retrospect you think, 'Man, they were available...'"

Nevertheless Alpert -- whose 1966 concert with the Tijuana Brass in London was promoted by Beatles manager Brian Epstein -- remains a professed Beatles fan who's more than happy to have a jazzy take of "Michelle" on Music Vol. 1, which comes out July 28 (pre-order here). The rendition was spurred by a groove presented by album producer Jochem van der Saag (Destiny's Child, Andrea Bocelli). "We were just kicking around some rhythm ideas, and all of a sudden he came up with this groove that just really touched me, and I started playing 'Michelle' ove details

Sixty-four choirs will pay tribute to The Beatles across Merseyside tomorrow morning (Thursday 8 June) as they sing at the same time.

Performances of the band’s track ‘When I’m Sixty-Four’ will take place at locations including Alder Hey Children’s Hospital, supermarkets, schools and on the streets as the Sgt Pepper at 50 celebrations continue.

With hundreds of people also expected to gather near the statue of the ‘Fab Four’ on Liverpool’s iconic waterfront when the region bursts into song at 10.30am prompt, those unable to attend are also being encouraged to get involved via social media.

The track will be broadcast live on BBC Radio Merseyside, which has organised the event alongside the team behind the citywide Sgt Pepper festivities, and the station is inviting members of the public to post videos of themselves singing along on its Facebook page.

On the same day, a series of poems from writers across the world including Roger McGough, Tracy K. Smith and Yasuhiro Yatsumoto to name a few will be loaded onto the website responding to the track.

The celebration is one of a series of world premiere commissions being held details

Pop music isn’t always an effective way of delivering a socially conscious message, and duets aren’t always as intriguing as they might appear on paper. But when Paul McCartney hooked up with Stevie Wonder to make a plea for racial harmony in 1982, the result was one of the biggest hits in either artist’s distinguished career.

The song in question, “Ebony and Ivory,” was demoed in late 1980 and developed during the sessions for McCartney’s third solo album, 1982’s Tug of War. With lyrics using the piano as a metaphor for ideal race relations, the song seemed like a natural for the duet treatment — and McCartney immediately knew who he wanted for a partner. “I wanted to sing it with a black guy,” he later recalled. “And my first thought was Stevie.”

Phoned by McCartney, Wonder quickly agreed. “I listened to the song, and I liked it very much,” said Wonder. “I felt it was positive for everybody. I won’t say it demanded of people to reflect upon it, but it politely asks the people to reflect upon life in using the terms of music … this melting pot of many different people.”

The duo convened at AIR St details

The pair sing about Sean’s famous parents John Lennon and Yoko Ono on Tomorrow Never Came.

Sean Lennon nearly cried with joy after Lana Del Rey declared their collaboration was “perfect”.

The Born to Die singer, 31, teamed up with John Lennon and Yoko Ono’ son Sean on track Tomorrow Never Came, from her new album Lust for Life.

Lyrics from the song reference Sean’s famous mum and dad, including the line “I wish we could go back to your country house/And put on the radio and listen to our favourite song by Lennon and Yoko”.

“She has exceptional taste,” Sean commented to Flaunt magazine of his collaborator’s approach to making music. “I told her that working on her song was a valuable lesson since I often modulate and take unintuitive chordal and melodic twists and turns, and she reminded me that you can be perhaps even more compelling if the melodies and chords feel natural and intuitive, not contrived or disorienting as in my music.

“Anyway I’ll never forget when she called me after I sent her what I did and her first words were ‘It’s perfect!’ I almost cried with joy because I honestly don&rsq details

The Beatles are back at Number 1 in the albums chart with ‘Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band’.

The band’s iconic eighth album was re-released on CD and vinyl last Friday (May 26), to commemorate the record’s 50th birthday. As a result, it has claimed the top spot in the Official Albums Chart again, half a decade on from its original release.

In a statement, Paul McCartney says, “Wow! Who would have thought that good old Sgt.Pepper would be back at number one 50 years on? It’s great news and all of us are well chuffed. Pepper rules!”

The record also takes the top spot in the Official Vinyl Album Chart, with 5,300 units sold of that re-release, which features remastered and remixed material, and unreleased session tapes. ‘Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band’ claimed 37,000 sales this week across all formats.

‘Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band’ has now spent a cumulative 28 weeks at Number 1 on the Official Chart – it is the best-selling studio album ever in the UK, and the third biggest selling of all-time, having sold 5.2 million UK copies over the last fifty years.


A new ‘ details

The original Strawberry Field gates are to go on display in Liverpool to mark fifty years since the UK release of The Beatles' hit.

The iconic gates from The Salvation Army's children's home will be returned to their home city of Liverpool to mark the occasion.

They were replaced by replicas in 2011 to protect them. The song, written by John Lennon, was inspired by the Strawberry Field site in Woolton, close to where he grew up with his aunt Mimi.

The woods around the children's home were said to be a place of peace and refuge from Lennon's troubled childhood, where he played in the grounds with friends.

As custodians of the site, The Salvation Army were aware of how important the gates had become to Fab Four fans, they recognised that the original gates were extremely fragile and moved them to a secure location, to protect them for future use.

Now the original gates, which have been in storage ever since, have been loaned by The Salvation Army to the award-winning Beatles Story where they join a wealth of Fab Four memorabilia.


Source: ITV News

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To paraphrase that famous Beatles lyric: "It was 50 years ago today Sgt Pepper taught the band to play."

And, to celebrate the half-century since the release of the Fab Four's seminal album Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, here's our rundown of the Mersey moptops' little known links to Wales.

Lennon was airlifted to Abergavenny:

The hysteria that followed The Beatles around was felt in such places as Abergavenny Town Hall Ballroom, which local promoter Eddie Tattersall had secured for the tiny fee of £250 in 1963, having luckily booked them just before they hit the big time.

However, in the run up to the show, John Lennon had been double-booked with an appearance on the BBC’s Jukebox Jury, leaving manager Brian Epstein to arrange a helicopter - at a cost of more than £100 - to take him from Battersea Heliport in London to Penypound Football Ground in order to make the gig.

They caused uproar in Llandudno:

But it was at a later two-night stint at the Odeon Cinema in Llandudno that the full weight of Beatlemania really became apparent.

Billed as “Britain’s fabulous disc stars”, the scenes at the shows drew in furious letters of compl details

When The Beatles released Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band fifty years ago, they inspired an entire generation of artists, musicians and, as it turns out, scientists.

One of the album’s most iconic songs, ‘Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds’ was immediately branded a psychedelic anthem, though John Lennon said it was inspired by a drawing his 3 year-old son Julian made of his classmate Lucy and the whimsical poeticism of Alice in Wonderland and The Wind in the Willows.

“When we sat down to write the song at John’s house, Julian’s drawing of Lucy and the stars was what inspired us,” said Paul McCartney. “At the top of the drawing Julian had written in childlike script, ‘Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds.’”

Almost a decade later, the song would become the backdrop to one of the biggest scientific discoveries of our time. On 24 November 1974, a team of scientists was digging in an isolated area in the Afar region of Ethiopia when paleoanthropologist Donald Johanson spotted a small fossil elbow bone. He immediately recognised it as coming from a human ancestor and soon discovered more parts that made up almost a complete hominin skeleton.


With the music world celebrating 50 years since the release of the Beatles' landmark album "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band," new details are emerging about the Canadian police officer who inspired the title.
The original Sgt. Pepper was a straitlaced, no-nonsense Ontario Provincial Police officer from Aurora named Sgt. Randall Pepper, who forged an unlikely friendship with the band while running their security detail during a 24-hour visit to Toronto in 1966. His identity had long been a mystery to the music world, fuelled in part by the OPP officer's badge Paul McCartney wore on the album cover.
Pepper's granddaughter, Cheryl Finn, says the whole matter had been a mystery to her as well, until her mother told her it was one of the family's "little claims to fame."

"My grandfather supposedly kept them out of some trouble and they wanted to recognize his good work and his kindness," Finn told CTV News Channel on Thursday. But, despite the honour, Finn says the real Sgt. Pepper was not a Beatles fan at all.
"He always thought they were kind of hooligans, and men in the Sixties should be clean-cut and clean-shaven," she said.
Music journalist Alan Cross says Pepper softened on the Beatles during details

An evening in early April. Outside Abbey Road Studios in north-west London, tourists are performing their customary dance with irate motorists as they attempt to have themselves photographed on the zebra crossing across which The Beatles walked in 1969 for the cover shot of Abbey Road.

Inside the complex, a group of 100 people are seated in Studio Two – another historic landmark, if one less easily accessible to the public. Here, guests are looking around, taking photos on their phones, peering up the stairs to the control room: spaces once populated by living, working, actual Beatles as they went about their business making some of the world’s greatest music.

It is 50 years ago today, pretty much, that the Beatles released their album Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. The record starts with an orchestra warming up and ends with a thunderous piano chord. There are sentimental songs and otherworldly trips, rooster noises and laughter. It’s the pinnacle of the band’s achievement but possibly also marks the beginning of their end. Shortly after, John Lennon and Paul McCartney became creatively estranged. Here, though, they are still working genuinely in partnership and it&rsq details

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