The producers of The Lennon Report – a film examining the aftermath of John Lennon’s assassination and those who tried to save him – have defended their project from accusations of cashing in on the 35th anniversary of the former Beatle’s death. The film will star Entourage’s Kevin Dillon (pictured) as a motorcycle cop, part of the emergency services team that attended the scene when Lennon was shot and killed by Mark Chapman outside his Manhattan home in December 1980. The film’s producers Gabriel and Rafael Francisco spoke to the BBC about the project. Rafael said: “People should come and watch the film and see for themselves. We’re not trying to cash in on anything.” Gabriel further defended their reasons for making the film: “We really want to show what the people in New York City did to save a person even though they didn’t know who it was at the time.” Following a similar narrative arc to last year’s Parkland (which examined the shooting of President John F Kennedy), the film will focus on the efforts of emergency services at the scene and at the Roosevelt Hospital where Lennon was taken, and how the story developed in the media.
Artist Yoko Ono is hoping to visit Folkestone next month to pay her respects at a new war memorial in Folkestone, it has been revealed today. The planned visit was announced as her work goes on show as part of the town Triennial arts festival. The widow of Beatle John Lennon is among the artists showing work around the town for the festival, which officially opens on Saturday and runs until November. During a press preview today, festival curator Lewis Biggs said the artist hoped to come to the town at the end of September and visit the Step Short memorial arch. The arch was opened by Prince Harry earlier this month to mark the centenary of the outbreak of the First World War. Ono is creating two new exclusive works for Folkestone. Margate’s Tracey Emin will be in town on Saturday as the launch day coincides with the arts extravaganza the Vauxhall Art Car Boot Fair at the harbour.
Ivor Davis knows exactly where he was 50 years ago today—hanging out with The Beatles. As the West Coast bureau chief for the London Daily Express, Davis was assigned to cover the first U.S. tour by the Fab Four that started with a performance at the Cow Palace in San Francisco on Aug. 19, 1964 and ended Sept. 20, 1964 at the Paramount Theater in New York. From young women bargaining with him to get near John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison or Ringo Starr to the late night Monopoly games (where Lennon was known to cheat), Davis recounts his ticket to ride along with the band on that cross-country trek in his new book “The Beatles and Me On Tour” (Cockney Kid Publishing, $15.99). Davis never planned to write a book on the experience. “When you are a reporter on a daily paper, you do a story and then you forget about it. That’s what happened for years and years,” Davis says. “I didn’t think it was such a big deal, but I would go to a dinner party and people would find out that I toured with The Beatles and they wanted to talk about it.”
Most Beatles fans know stories about John Lennon’s mother Julia, whose early death in 1958 scarred him for life and inspired his music. On his 1970 song Mother, he sang “You had me but I never had you”. But Kevin Roach says many don’t know the true story – and he hopes his new interactive book, Julia, will set the record straight. Walton-born Kevin, who has already written about George Harrison and Paul McCartney, wanted to tell the hidden story of John’s roots rather than repeating stories of John’s fame. He says that the idea of Julia as an irresponsible “good-time girl” who couldn’t look after her son came from Aunt Mimi, who raised John in her house in Menlove Avenue. But over time a more nuanced portrait of Julia has emerged, helped by John’s half-sister Julia Baird publishing her story in Imagine This in 2007. So Kevin decided to produce a book dedicated to Julia Lennon, delving into Liverpool’s archives to learn her family history and speaking to Julia Baird and others who knew John and his mother.
We’re coming to the end of the school summer holidays here in the UK (and our unfortunately short summer!). Lots of you will have noticed the additional noise, chaos and excitement that summer brings when school’s out! It’s certainly a very exciting time and really does seem to last forever through the eyes of a child. It’s a shame that the older you get, the shorter those precious months become!
August’s question for ‘You Gave Me The Answer’ comes from Donna Simmons in the US who asks… “As a child, what was your favourite holiday and why?” We caught up with Paul recently to find out. He replied,
The GRAMMY Foundation and MusiCares Foundation — the affiliated charities of The Recording Academy — announced that their respective Boards have elected new officers and members. The new GRAMMY Foundation Board officers are Chair Tim Bucher, CEO, Lyve Minds Inc.; Vice Chair Geoff Cottrill, chief marketing officer, Converse; and Secretary/Treasurer Rachna Bhasin, senior vice president of corporate strategy and business development, SiriusXM Radio. The new Chair Emeritus is Rusty Rueff, venture startup investor and advisor. Ryan Seacrest, TV and radio host/producer, continues in his role as Honorary Chair of the GRAMMY Foundation Board.
A Beatles historian has claimed manager Brian Epstein first spotted the Fab Four when they performed in a youth club in Tuebrook. Gerry Murphy, who was a co-founder of the Cavern City Tours, claims to have discovered that the group was first seen by the manager who helped them to international success at St John’s Youth Centre on Snaefell Avenue, Tuebrook. And he said the club, also known as Brockman Hall and now home to disability charity Daisy Inclusive, was the setting for the “best rock and roll ever seen”. Mr Murphy said he was studying for an MA in the Beatles when he came across the information. He now believes Epstein came to a Beatles concert in July 1961 and spotted the group months before his first reported gig at the Cavern in November that year.
The reissues were originally supposed to come out on September 22 as part of the Paul McCartney Archive Collection, following similar reissues of 'Band On The Run', 'McCartney', 'McCartney II', 'Ram' and 'Wings Over America'. However, the records will now be released on November 3 "due to production issues". No further information about the delay has been released. The albums will come out in a two-disc standard edition and three-disc deluxe edition, complete with extra material, a book featuring unpublished photographs and new interviews with McCartney.
New York, N.Y. - August 27, 2014 - In 1964, four musicians from Liverpool appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show. Now, fifty years after that iconic performance, John, Paul, George and Ringo, otherwise known as The Beatles, are America's favorite musician or band, moving up from a tie for third place in 2010. Their counterpart in that 2010 tie, Elvis Presley - who appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1956 - moves up to the number two spot this year. After dropping a "secret" album earlier this year and performing with her husband to sold-out crowds around the country, Beyoncé debuts on the favorite musician or band list at number three. They debuted their first album 46 years ago and their song "Stairway to Heaven" consistently lands on classic rock top ten lists, and now Led Zepplin debuts in the number four spot. And after conducting his farewell tour, the "King of Country," George Strait, moves up two spots to number five on this year's list. These are some of the results of The Harris Poll® of 2,306 U.S. adults surveyed online between July 16 and 21, 2014.
Paul recently signed a Martin D-28 left-handed guitar, which was put up for auction and raised an astonishing $50,000 within minutes. Bidding began in the morning on eBay with a starting bid of $10,000 and quickly reached the impressive final amount in no time. Proceeds from the auction will go to The Nature Conservancy's African Elephant Initiative. Alongside his signature, Paul also scribed, "This guitar saves elephants" on the Martin guitar. A fitting slogan since the funds will be used to increase security for elephants on the ground in Africa and reduce demand for ivory.