Beatles News

Penned during 'Revolver' sessions, letter reveals that The Beatles pulled out of planned Stax sessions due to financial issues

A previously unreleased letter that George Harrison wrote to Atlanta DJ Paul Drew in May of 1966 reveals that the Beatles seriously contemplated recording at Stax in Memphis with producer Jim Stewart before the plan was derailed by financial issues. "We would all like it a lot," Harrison wrote by hand, "but too many people get insane with money ideas at the mention of the word 'Beatles,' and so it fell through!"

Word of the proposed Stax sessions has circulated before, but it was always said they pulled out due to security issues. It was also never known they contemplated working with Jim Stewart as opposed to George Martin, the only producer they'd ever worked with until the end of their career three years later.

The letter was recently put on sale by Los Angeles-based rock collectibles dealer Jeff Gold, who acquired it from Drew's widow shortly after he passed away in 2013. "When I read the Stax part I was like, 'What the hell is th details

WORLD EXCLUSIVE Hundreds of previously unseen Beatles photos have been found after languishing in boxes for 50 years alongside forgotten images of other famous names from the 1960s.

The Beatles photos, captured during a shoot at Granada Studios in December 1965, are among around half a million newly discovered images from the worlds of music, sport and entertainment captured by photographers for TV Times magazine.

Only a tiny fraction were published before they were stashed in A4 envelopes inside boxes at the British Film Institute (BFI) in London – and apparently forgotten about ever since.

The collection also boasts never-before-seen photos of legends such as Woody Allen and Peter Sellers.

For each image published there were between two and ten rolls of film, explained David Abbott, who is researching the TV Times archive for the magazine’s publisher, Time Inc UK.

There were 11 rolls of black & white film of The Beatles – plus a roll of colour – taken during a show called The Music of Lennon & McCartney.

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It seems as though musicians are being busted for copyright infringement a lot more frequently. ‘Blurred lines’ sounds like ‘Got to give it up’, ‘Stay with me’ is a knock-off of ‘I won’t back down’, and ‘Down Under’ rips off ‘Kookaburra’. When did artists become so litigious? Actually, it’s been going on forever.
In many cases of musical misappropriation, artists themselves are remarkably cool about ‘their’ music being used by someone else. Tom Petty was extremely gracious to Sam Smith about the similarities between ‘Stay with me’ and ‘I won’t back down’, saying in a blog post “I have never had any hard feelings toward Sam”

All my years of songwriting have shown me these things can happen. Most times you catch it before it gets out the studio door but in this case it got by. Sam’s people were very understanding of our predicament and we easily came to an agreement. The word lawsuit was never even said and was n details

ASTRID KIRCHHERR - Monday, May 18, 2015

The Astrid Kirchherr Early Beatles Collection of photographs – available exclusively at Rock Paper Photo - is one of the most important photographic records of a time in 20th century popular culture that was quite simply magical. Rock Paper Photo is the birth of a cataclysmic youth movement as personified by a group of young men from the north of Engalnd was witnessed via the camera of a style-innovating young German woman who befriended and influenced them. All of them were in the right place, at the right time, to make history together. Astrid Kirchherr’s lens caught the members of the Beatles as they transitioned from unknown teenagers to famous rock stars, from innocent to wise, from youths to men. These photographs remain as witnesses to this era, and viewers of the collection are privileged to experience them.

Astrid Kirchherr, an art and fashion student in post-war Hamburg, was introduced to The Beatles in the early part of her professional photography career at the KaiserKeller Club where the group was on contract to play seven hours of music per d details

Sir Paul McCartney's daughter talks about her family and the inspiration behind her new vegetarian cookbook At My Table.

In her light-filled studio tucked away down a cobbled mews in an unglamorous corner of northwest London, Mary McCartney is juggling the day’s engagements and talking about her books.
On the table in front of us are the hefty volumes of Monochrome/Colour. Published last year, they gather together images taken by the photographer over the past 20-odd years. There are street scenes, still-lifes, celebrity portraits (actress Gwyneth Paltrow, musician Beth Ditto) and intimate pictures of family members. Here’s musician father Sir Paul and his wife Nancy Shevell, fuzzily caught embracing in his London garden at the reception after their 2011 wedding. There’s fashion designer sister Stella, shot in warm close-up. There’s her late mother Linda, snapped on Polaroid.

This 45-year-old is hugely successful at her “day-job", in-demand for portraiture, art photography and fashion images. But despite the example of Linda, a roc details

An icon he may be, but sometimes Paul McCartney doesn’t get the respect he deserves, maybe because next to sarky, saintly Lennon, he can’t help but look like a bit of a sentimental old softie. But it’s worth remembering that as a fan of experimental composer Stockhausen in his youth and a dabbler in electronica as one half of The Fireman in his autumn years, Macca has always been an experimenter and a technological first-adopter, keen to embrace new techniques and unafraid to appear a little silly in the process. That, in a nutshell, is the story of ‘McCartney II’, his quirky, synth heavy second solo album, released 35 years ago this weekend. In 1979, with Wings gradually disintegrating, McCartney sat alone at home in his farmhouse in East Sussex surrounded by some state-of-the-art equipment – new synths, sequencers, and a hired Studer 16-track tape machine. The self-produced and largely self-performed result was playful, experimental – and greeted with a decidedly mixed reception. Here's its story...

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Dualities are fascinating: Yin and Yang, Blur and Oasis, God and Satan, the Beatles and the Rolling Stones, and so on. You can analyze these contrasting pairs to apparent death, and yet they’ll spring up again, resurrected, presenting fresh puzzles. Whether you approach each duo as a harmonious conjunction of opposites or as a violent discord between irreconcilables, the process always manages to generate a spark.

In the present case, consider the difficult question of the greatest album by a former Beatle. Sure, you might find a few dissenters who would want to bust up the duality I’m about to present: they’d claim that Imagine is the best post-Beatles effort, and maybe a few daring reactionaries would cite Band on the Run. You could throw Lennon against McCartney and see what insights ensue, since that’s the principal Beatles duality in everyone’s mind, with Lennon as the emotionally raw rocker and McCartney as the consummate craftsman of orchestral pop.

Ultimately, that’s not where the true post-Beatles dialectic i details

The John Lennon and Paul McCartney songwriting duo has been so lionized throughout history it's difficult to consider them anything besides creative divinity. However, after the Beatles broke up, neither achieved a comparable level of artistic mastery. But a third Beatle did: George Harrison.

Harrison, the so-called "quiet Beatle," shocked the world with his solo debut, which he began recording 45 years ago this month. Entitled All Things Must Pass, the album's spiritually infused folk and blues blew critics' minds. The moment was "the rock equivalent of the shock felt by pre-war moviegoers when [Greta] Garbo first opened her mouth in a talkie: Garbo talks! — Harrison is free!" wrote Richard Williams for Melody Maker.

All Things Must Pass remains the greatest solo recording any Beatles released. And had the songwriting partnership of McCartney and Lennon held, the world may never have learned how incredible a songwriter Harrison was.

Rock 'n' roll's Tolstoy: The variety of styles, emotions and stories Harrison drew from to create All Things Must Pass i details

Performing on The Ed Sullivan Show might have helped launch the careers of Elvis Presley and the Beatles, but Bob Dylan took a different approach to fame: courting celebrity by not performing.

Dylan was slated to appear on the massively popular variety show on this day, May 12, in 1963 — a year before the Beatles. At the time, he was little known by mainstream audiences, although TIME had referred to him a year earlier as “a promising young hobo.”

“He dresses in sheepskin and a black corduroy Huck Finn cap, which covers only a small part of his long, tumbling hair,” TIME’s 1962 story attests. “[H]e delivers his songs in a studied nasal that has just the right clothespin-on-the-nose honesty to appeal to those who most deeply care.”

On Ed Sullivan, Dylan planned to put a spin on his clothespin-on-the-nose honesty with “Talkin’ John Birch Paranoid Blues,” a satirical song written from the perspective of a John Birch Society member who is so terrified of communist infiltration that he looks for Reds every details

It was, in almost every respect, a carbon-copy weekend gig for Josh Walther and his wedding band, Phase5. Booked a year in advance at a familiar Winter Park country club. Intimate, 200 people, tops. Decent vegan spread.

"The decor wasn't extravagant," he said. "It was just a typical family gathering."

Totally typical, yes — except for the part where Paul McCartney showed up. And hopped onstage. And grabbed the microphone. And sang I Saw Her Standing There. And left Walther and his band reeling from the musical memory of a lifetime.

It's a bucket list moment for any musician, sharing the stage with Sir Paul, and when you play in a wedding band from Tampa, it's one you're 99.999 percent sure you'll never experience. But it happened on Saturday for Phase5, who played the graduation party of McCartney's stepson Arlen Blakeman, a communications major at Rollins College in Winter Park, just north of Orlando.

A clip of the performance hit Facebook and YouTube over the weekend, and Walther, 33, has since been inundated with kudo details

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