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Stella McCartney: A success without making fashion victims out of animals - Friday, April 10, 2015

In a nondescript building tucked away on a quiet street in west London, Stella McCartney and her team are comparing the properties of a real leather shoe with the various non-leather swatches being considered for her brand’s winter 2015 shoe collection.

Women of differing ages, ethnicities and body types come in and out of the room with a constant flow of new ideas while McCartney acts as a kind of real-time editor, deciding what colours, materials and shapes feel right for the upcoming season.

An assistant is frantically taking notes to capture her feedback while snapping digital photos of the things that catch her eye.

McCartney does not use any animal products — no leather, no fur, no skins, no feathers.

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First-ever exhibition on Ravi Shankar in the US to be unveiled at the Grammy Museum in Los Angeles on April 29 - Thursday, April 09, 2015

When ‘Ravi Shankar: A Life In Music’, is unveiled at the Grammy Museum here, on April 29, it would mark the first exhibition in the United States to celebrate India’s most esteemed musician, who died on December 11, 2012, at La Jolla in San Diego, California.The date, April 29, would also be the renowned sitar player and Beatles’ inspiration Ravi Shankar’s 95th birthday.Through a collection of sitars, artifacts and rare photographs from the Shankar family, the exhibit will provide visitors with a one-of-a-kind glimpse into the Grammy-winning world music icon’s early life, the roots of his musicality and his vast impact on Western music, according to a press release. 

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Revisiting The Beatles' 1988 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction - Tuesday, April 07, 2015

Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr have never shared an embrace at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction ceremony.

Call it a result of unique circumstances or bitter grudges. But it will all change on Saturday, April 18 when McCartney inducts Ringo Starr into the Rock Hall as a solo artist.

The Beatles were inducted as a band in 1988. Yet Paul McCartney chose not to attend. George Harrison, Ringo and John Lennon's widow Yoko Ono were on hand to accept the honor.

Mick Jagger inducted the band. Ringo then came to the microphone to deliver a few jokes.

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Yes, I lost John to another woman... but it WASN'T Yoko - Sunday, April 05, 2015

For almost 50 years she kept an astonishing secret, refusing to attack the woman who ruined her life. When Cynthia Lennon died aged 75 from cancer last week, the world believed her marriage to Beatles star John had been destroyed by Yoko Ono.
Yet the truth about John and his relationships with women is infinitely more complex, and vastly more revealing of his real character, than the enduring myth.
I know this because Cynthia told me herself. In a rare and never before published interview, she revealed that her former husband believed the true love of his life was not Yoko Ono, but Alma Cogan, a fading female singing star eight years older than himself.

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Backstage with The Beatles: Page signed by all four before Manchester Apollo gig in 1964 and fan letter listed on eBay - Friday, April 03, 2015

One piece of paper signed by all four Beatles before their 1964 gig at Manchester's O2 Apollo and a fan letter addressed to George are on sale on eBay for £6,000.

The genuine autographs and letter – which is said to be from two fans from Derby, contain a six-verse poem about the fab four and has never been published or seen in public before – are being sold by Brian Higham.

Brian, who was brought up in Manchester during the 50s and 60s, used to work for a music shop on Oxford Road which is how he got so immersed in the industry that he got asked backstage before the Liverpudlian legends’ show.

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The muse who brought out John’s dark side - Friday, April 03, 2015

Cynthia Powell Lennon’s influence an be heard in tender love songs, but also in the early vitriolic and sarcastic songs of The Beatles.

John and Cynthia met at art school in Liverpool and became a couple at Christmas 1958. She was a nice middle class girl and he was already a rocker, fond of fighting, drinking and sex. Friends said they were opposites.

Lennon in later life was nothing but disparaging about her and their time together. His letters from the time tell a different story, like this one from the Beatles’ long residency in Hamburg:

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What if Ringo had wound up in Texas? - Thursday, April 02, 2015

Ringo Starr didn't have to end up with The Beatles. He could have been a Texas factory worker moonlighting as a country blues player. He might have been a world-class knitter.

Thankfully, fate had other plans for the now-74-year-old drummer, who celebrates spring with his just-released album Postcards From Paradise and an induction April 18 into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a solo act.

The Liverpool, England, native was 13 and hospitalized for tuberculosis when he first played the drums. "This woman would come in with maracas and tambourines and little drums. I played the drum the first time, and every time she came back, I wouldn't be in the bedridden band unless I got a drum," he says. During the long stay, "I learned to knit."

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John Lennon's first wife Cynthia has died - Wednesday, April 01, 2015

Cynthia Lennon, first wife of The Beatles' John Lennon, has died at her home in Spain, her family has announced.
A message on her son Julian's website said she died "following a short but brave battle with cancer".
It said: "Her son Julian Lennon was at her bedside throughout. The family are thankful for your prayers."
Julian also tweeted a picture of his mother, who was 75, inside a heart with the message "In Loving Memory".

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Beatles’ childhood homes are selling at ridiculous premiums - Tuesday, March 31, 2015


The semi-detached house at 1 Blomfield Rd. in Liverpool is a modest three-bedroom with a stucco exterior, wood-paneled walls, and red shag carpeting. In a typical scenario, such details would make the house feel outdated and undesirable. But Tuesday’s sale was far from typical: The property, which was home to John Lennon’s mom until her death in 1958, sold at auction for $229,000.

That’s $59,000 more than what comparable homes typically list for in the area. The buyer was a London woman named Jackie Holmes, who bought George Harrison’s childhood home last year for $231,000. She told the Liverpool Echo that she plans to live in one home and rent out the other as a Beatles-themed apartment.

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Liverpool's Beatles-themed Hard Days Night Hotel on sale for £11m - Monday, March 30, 2015

Luxury city centre hotel opened its doors in 2008 and has proved a hit with Fab Four fans from all over the world.

Liverpool’s Beatles-themed Hard Days Night Hotel is being put up for sale today with a price tag of £11m.

The luxury hotel in North John Street opened its doors during the city’s Capital of Culture year in 2008 and since then has proved a hit with Fab Four fans from all over the world.

It is housed in the Grade II-listed Central Buildings, which was designed by Thomas C Clarke and completed in 1884.

Hard Days Night is part of a group of companies ultimately owned and operated by Liverpool-based property firm, Concord Estates, run by Merseyside property entrepreneur, Tony Criss.

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