Beatles News

In September 1966, John Lennon went to Almería, Spain, mainly to film his only acting role outside the Beatles, in Richard Lester’s “How I Won the War,” but also as a needed respite from Beatlemania, which had turned nightmarish on the world tour that had ended the previous month. There, Lennon examined his life with a detachment that found its way into the gentle ballad “It’s Not Too Bad.” The song proved far more important than the film. By year’s end, the Beatles and their ingenious producer, George Martin—who died at age 90 on March 8—had transformed this folk-like tune into “Strawberry Fields Forever,” a recording (released in 1967) that many critics regard as one of rock’s most enduring masterpieces, a rich-textured, dark-hued four-minute essay in musical and lyrical psychedelia that both captures and transcends its time.

Lennon’s earliest recordings of the song, from Almería, begin not with the laconic refrain that opens the finished recording—“Let me take you down / ’cause I’m going to Strawberry Fields / Nothing is real / And nothing to get hung about”—but with a verse that starts, &ld details

When news broke that the Michael Jackson estate would sell its 50 percent share of Sony/ATV Music Publishing to Sony in a $750 million deal, many wondered whether Paul McCartney would finally be able to acquire the rights to his share of the company’s crown jewel -- the Lennon-McCartney catalog -- since it begins coming up for reversion in 2018.

Billboard can confirm that as of Dec. 15, 2015, he has already begun the process.

To recap, at some point during the early ‘80s heyday of McCartney’s friendship with Jackson, he pointed out the value of music publishing. Jackson soon received a tip that ATV Music -- publisher of the Beatles’ Lennon-McCartney songs, among many others -- was available, and purchased it for $47.5 million in 1985. McCartney had long coveted his Beatles catalog -- he and Lennon lost out to ATV in a 1969 attempt to purchase Northern Songs, their original publisher -- and he never forgave Jackson for what he considered a betrayal of their friendship.

It’s an opportunity McCartney is not going to let slip past him again. The U.S. Copyright Act of 1976 gave songwriters the ability to recapture the publishers’ share of their songs, and in the case of tit details

Years before scoring hits with The Alan Parsons Project (“Time,” “Eye in the Sky,” “Don’t Answer Me”), Alan Parsons was a recording engineer at Abbey Road Studios in London, overseeing sessions for Pink Floyd (“Atom Heart Mother,” “Dark Side of The Moon”), The Hollies (“The Air That I Breathe”), Pilot (“Magic”), Al Stewart (“Year of the Cat”), Ambrosia (“Holdin’ Onto Yesterday”), Jeff Beck (“Beck-Ola”) and dozens of others.

In 1969, on a blustery Jan. 30, Parsons – then age 19 - was one of the few permitted access to The Beatles’ surprise lunchtime live performance from the group’s Apple building rooftop, as cameras rolled in hopes of capturing a suitable ending for the film that became “Let It Be.” It was a gig that Parsons says he stayed up all night preparing for. After running cables from the roof to the basement studio where engineer Glyn Johns was recording the performance, Parsons was sent to purchase pairs of pantyhose (“we called them ‘tights,’” he laughs) to act as a windscreen for the microphones.

Later in 1969, Parson details

A set of previously unseen photographs of John Lennon smiling and playing up to the camera on the set of a film he starred in 50 years ago are expected to sell for £30,000 when they go up for auction. The set of 200 candid images - 190 of which have never been published - show the usually intense Beatle having fun on the set of the 1967 black comedy movie 'How I Won the War'.

Although the World War Two film was not well-received by critics, the then 26-year-old seemed to have made the most of his time in Almeria, Northern Spain. In some of the pictures a windswept Lennon can be seen wearing his trademark round glasses as he stands at wicket keeper during an impromptu game of cricket during a break in filming. 

Dressed in army fatigues and sporting a unruly hair cut, the Liverpudlian stands ready behind rudimentary stumps hastily made from a wooden box. The legendary songwriter is also caught on camera laughing hysterically as he queue-jumps at the canteen. 

The peace campaigner also looked comfortable wielding a big gun in the turret of a tank and in another picture he appears to have picked up the '1,000 yard' stare of a seasoned veteran. 'How I Won the War' was released amidst the conde details

There are some who simply assume that George Harrison’s love for Indian music dates from around the time he and the other Beatles went to the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi’s lecture in London on 24 August 1967. In fact George’s interest was piqued in April 1965 when the Beatles were filming Help! in April 1965.

“We were waiting to shoot the scene in the restaurant when the guy gets thrown in the soup and there were a few Indian musicians playing in the background. I remember picking up the sitar and trying to hold it and thinking, 'This is a funny sound.' It was an incidental thing, but somewhere down the line I began to hear Ravi Shankar's name. The third time I heard it, I thought, 'This is an odd coincidence.' And then I talked with David Crosby of The Byrds and he mentioned the name. I went and bought a Ravi record; I put it on and it hit a certain spot in me that I can't explain, but it seemed very familiar to me. The only way I could describe it was: my intellect didn't know what was going on and yet this other part of me identified with it. It just called on me ... a few months elapsed and then I met this guy from the Asian Music Circle organisation who said, 'Oh, Ravi Shankar's gonna come to my h details

They are some of the most intimate images ever taken of John and Yoko. In one portrait, the couple are pictured at their secret wedding in Gibraltar in 1969. In another, they happily nestle together in the back of a limo following the ceremony.

Others show the newlyweds, both in white, looking relaxed on a private jet at the end of the wedding saga that would later be immortalised in hit song The Ballad Of John And Yoko.

Yet they are among the most controversial pictures, too. For as John Lennon’s widow prepares to mark the anniversary of her wedding to the late Beatle next Sunday, The Mail on Sunday can reveal these exclusive images are a source of anguish that has distressed her for decades. 

As the photographer who took the pictures that day explains, they are at the heart of a long-running mystery after vanishing in an apparent burglary. And, despite the best efforts of detectives, have never been seen since. Until now – because a Mail on Sunday investigation has tracked down the negatives for the 118 missing pictures, estimated to be worth more than £100,000, and discovered they are being touted for sale, apparently by well-known Beatles biographer, although he denies it.  details

Rock and pop legend Sir Paul McCartney was spotted at Cineworld in Ashford yesterday to catch the third instalment in the Kung Fu Panda series. He visited the multiplex with a teenage boy, believed to be his grandson. Zoe Robertson, from Folkestone, who is a massive fan of The Beatles, was in the same screening as the singer/songwriter.

Her dreams came true when he approached her after the film was over. Miss Robertson said: "We saw him in the popcorn queue before the film and my partner said 'That's Sir Paul'. But I didn't believe him. "But then when we were handing our tickets over to go through, the member of staff said 'Hello Sir Paul' to him, so we knew it was him." Sir Paul, 73, and his young companion sat in the row behind Miss Robertson, who was with her partner and his daughter.

She adds: "When I went to the loo, another woman came up to me and asked if it was him sitting behind me. "Then when we were walking out, I saw him over my shoulder. He said hello to me and I said it back. He then crossed the foyer to come and talk to us. "He was really relaxed and friendly and asked us if we liked the film and what we were doing for the rest of the day." Miss Robertson did ask for a photo, but the Hey Jude, Let details

Guitar company Fender has painstakingly replicated the Telecaster George Harrison played both in the sessions for Let It Be and in the Beatles' farewell concert atop the roof of Apple Records headquarters. It has made 100 limited-edition copies of the guitar, reproduced down to minute details, which are available now.

The original guitar can be seen prominently during the Beatles' performance of "Get Back" during the rooftop concert. Fender had custom-made two copies of the model and sent one to Harrison and Jimi Hendrix, with hopes they'd play them live. Hendrix died before he was able to play his, according to the Beatle's son, Dhani Harrison.

The suggested retail price for one of the replica guitars is a hefty $12,500, but it is meant to reflect the level of attention to detail put into the instrument. Harrison's family granted Fender Custom Shop Master Builder Paul Waller access to the Beatle's instrument, a 1968 Rosewood Telecaster, and allowed him to examine, dismantle and effectively reverse-engineer it. 

Returning the guitar to its native state proved to be more difficult than Waller had expected. Harrison had given the instrument to his friend, Delaney and Bonnie songwriter and producer Del details

After a couple of years on his “Out There Tour”, Paul McCartney has decided to retool and relaunch on the road with his new “One on One” product.

The ‘One On One’ Tour will debut a brand new production, as always utilizing state of the art audio and video technology and to ensure an unforgettable experience from every seat in the house. Employing massive screens, lasers, fireworks and, of course, a staggering selection of the best songs ever written or performed, every Paul McCartney show promises a once in a lifetime evening that transcends and elevates the potential of live music.

McCartney hasn’t been off the road for that long, ending the Out There tour in Buffalo, NY on October 22 of last year. The new tour starts on April 13 in Fresno, CA and plays seven North American dates, including two in Vancouver, before moving to Europe starting May 28 in Dusseldorf, Germany.

The dates: 04/13 – Fresno, CA – SaveMart Arena 04/15 – Portland, OR – Moda Center 04/17 – Seattle, WA – Key Arena 04/19 – Vancouver, BC – Rogers Arena 04/20 – Vancouver, BC – Rogers Arena 04/30 – Little Rock, AK – Verizon Ar details

It's something you have to imagine. And while visiting the beach area, he drives his car into a library parking lot just as the radio starts playing a Beatles song, Please Mr. Postman.All of this happened as I went to interview Julia Baird, the sister of former Beatles leader John Lennon, whose music, as she told me, will never disappear.

She's so right. She has examples from all over the world. She was once doing research in India at the Dali Lama's. She was looking for his assistant and found the Buddhist monk listening to a Beatles tune, Yellow Submarine. She has been living with the Beatles and its mania most of her life.

In Panama City for a Beatles tribute concert and signing her book, Imagine This: Growing Up With My Brother John Lennon, Julia, named after her and John's mother Julia, travels with the tribute band the Mersey Beatles, whose members grew up in Liverpool and still live where Julia and John called home.

"The band, I think, is the best of the tribute bands. They grew up in Liverpool, live in Liverpool and do the best tribute of the Beatles." Julia, a half-sister to John, born to the same mother, has written a book to set the record straight about her brother's upbringing, lacing it wit details

Beatles Radio Listener Poll
Have you ever crossed Abbey Road at the Zebra Crossing