Beatles News

For this week's CL cover story, "Mammal Gallery braces for an unwritten future," Richard Miller relived the moment former Beatles singer and bass player Paul McCartney wandered into his South Broad drugstore. Here is his story.

"He was here at the Merchandise Mart watching his daughter Stella sell some of her wears. She made dishes and such, and he was here with his son James watching. They got bored and wanted to go check out 'the funky side of town' — Little Five Points. He got into a limousine with his son James, and he must've told the driver, 'Take us to Five Points,' which is just a block from the drugstore. So the limousine driver pulled up in front of the store because the next block is not available for cars. Paul got out of the limousine and saw a display for a product we carry called Run Devil Run in our window and said, 'Oh, that’s a cool thing, let’s go in and see what it’s all about.'

We didn’t quite realize who he was when he and James came in. They were dressed all in black — black hat, black sunglasses, black clothes. Paul walked up to the counter and asked Diane, what is this Run Devil Run? And she told him it was aromatherapy for depression. He said, 'My wif details

Ron Howard’s 2016 documentary The Beatles: Eight Days a Week offered an unprecedented look at the group’s touring years from 1963 through 1966. Among the many rare snippets was color footage recorded at a November 20, 1963, date at the ABC Cinema in Manchester, England. That clip is a Beatles fan’s dream. High-quality color footage of the group from before its February 1964 arrival in the U.S. is hard to come by. What’s readily available is mostly in black and white and often has poor audio quality.

The Manchester clip is an exception. It was created by Pathé News for the short feature The Beatles Come to Town and features performances of “She Loves You” and “Twist and Shout.” The film was shot in Technicolor and Techniscope (a budget widescreen process from the period) and features good-quality audio. Even without the benefit of modern restoration, it makes for enjoyable viewing. The film was originally shown in British theaters during the week of December 22, 1963, as a preview to the daily feature.

While it’s great to see the ABC Theater footage restored and included in Howard’s film, the performance of “She Loves You” is broken up details

Nearly 15 years after his death, the legacy of George Harrison and his fellow Beatles continues to reveal itself. At the moment, it's in the form of a rare black-and-white photograph in the hands of Olivia Harrison, wife of the late singer-guitarist: It shows the early Beatles posing with their instruments in a barren stretch of Liverpool, England, dressed in matching suits but still looking tough behind their smiles.

"Look at the tones in John's face," Olivia says, marveling at the image of a young John Lennon. She is sitting with family friend Nicholas Roylance, publisher at U.K.-based Genesis Publications, who hands her a batch of smaller pictures of George, capturing him as both a Beatle and solo artist. "Where did that come from?" Olivia says, examining one of the pictures. "That's super cute."

Her ongoing mission to excavate, catalog and share the long musical history of her husband is never-ending, and has already led to her co-producing the acclaimed 2011 documentary George Harrison: Living in the Material World, directed by Martin Scorsese. Now comes the expanded reissue of his 1980 book, I Me Mine, a casually intimate memoir and collection of lyrics. The book and a meticulously crafted vinyl box set of details

A 45 rpm copy of the second single released in the United Kingdom by all four members of the Beatles is expected to earn top lot honors at Heritage Auctions’ Entertainment & Music Memorabilia Signature Auction March 18 in Dallas.

The record includes recordings of Ask Me Why and Please Please Me (est. $40,000). John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr all signed the Ask Me Why B-side of the record; McCartney and Harrison also signed the reverse side, which features an A-side recording of Please Please Me. Given to its original owner at the Cavern Club in Liverpool, the single was released Jan. 11, 1963, 13 days before a signing session at the NEMS record shop, where the signatures likely were acquired.

A photo of the Fab Four signed by all four members of the band (est. $18,000) also is expected to draw heavy interest at the auction. The 8-by-10 glossy black-and-white picture, taken in early 1965 in the Bahamas, is signed with a felt-tip pen and includes a certificate of authenticity from Heritage Auctions and Tracks LTD.

An original pressing of the Help! Album Signed by John Lennon, Paul McCartney and George Harrison of the Beatles (Capitol MAS 2386, 1965), (est. $12,000) wi details

It was the first Beatles record I bought, but it wasn’t my favorite Beatles song.

I’d heard “She Loves You” in the fall of 1963, and, while the buddy I first heard it with (a story I have related before) mocked the song (as did the deejay who introduced it), I’d been immediately smitten, though I diplomatically kept my opinion to myself. Thereafter, when I listened to far away radio stations in big cities like Chicago and New York on my transistor radio at night when I was supposed to be going to sleep, I listened for “She Loves You.”

I think I may have heard it twice between that first time and the advent of what we know as Beatlemania. I freely admit that my memory of this period is fuzzy. I was in my 12th year and between the time I first heard “She Loves You” in mid-November and when I began hearing “I Want to Hold Your Hand” and other Beatles songs November 22, 1963 happened. Like most Americans I walked around in a dull daze for a while, so I hope I may be forgiven for an imperfect memory of the timeline of events.

So, Christmas 1963 came and went. I got several replacement batteries for my transistor radio among my presents which ke details

Alan Aldridge obituary - Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Once dubbed “Beardsley in blue jeans”, the artist Alan Aldridge, who has died aged 73, created some of the most enduring pop imagery of the 1960s and 70s. His illustration of the Who on their second album A Quick One (1966) was a distinctive period piece in which huge song titles swirled out from the musicians’ instruments and earned him a Grammy nomination. His poster for the 1966 Andy Warhol film Chelsea Girls, featuring the naked 16-year-old model Clare Shenstone adorned with suggestive artistic enhancements, was a notorious tour de force that briefly threatened to get Aldridge arrested on pornography charges.

He later formed a close working relationship with the Beatles and their Apple Corps company, and one of his best-known projects was The Beatles Illustrated Lyrics (1969), which featured Aldridge’s reality-warping artistic interpretations of such songs as Yellow Submarine, Nowhere Man and A Hard Day’s Night. A second volume was published in 1971. Aldridge was appointed “His Royal Master of Images to their Majesties the Beatles” by John Lennon. His catalogue was further embellished by posters for the Rolling Stones and the sleeve for Cream’s album Goodbye Cream (196 details

They are the biggest band in pop music history and usually credited with being the most influential. But in reality The Beatles were an average group who did little to change the musical landscape – at least according to one academic, who claims to have the science to back it up. Despite the Fab Four’s 600 million record sales, Professor Armand Leroi dismisses their output as ‘ditties for prepubescent girls’ and claims they ‘sat out’ the musical revolution of the 1960s. 

His findings come not from a background in music, but from evolutionary biology. ‘As fruit flies evolve, so too does pop,’ he says. ‘Every new song comes with its own burden of mutations. Some of them bad, but a few of them flourish and get passed on to future generations. Listen carefully, and you can hear the music evolve.’ Not surprisingly, the heretical suggestions have drawn the ire of Beatles fans, including music expert Paul Gambaccini who blasts Prof Leroi as ‘preposterous’, threatening to ‘dissect him like a fly’ in a head-to-head debate. 

The academic, from Imperial College London, used computer algorithms to analyse singles from every major b details

JOHN LENNON thought he was just a kid — in the end, though, George Harrison proved himself The Beatles’ fastest learner. In their earliest days, Paul McCartney would always have the fresh-faced teenage George tagging along with him, but Lennon felt he was wet behind the ears.

The truth, however, was that George had already put in the hours and mastered all those American guitar tricks that neither John nor Paul could do!

Later, George would continue to outdo them with some of the band’s greatest numbers. It must have galled him when Frank Sinatra described his Something as a Lennon-McCartney song, but it was from the pen of Harrison, as was Here Comes The Sun, While My Guitar Gently Weeps, Taxman and others. This weekend, the world remembers George, who would have been 74 on Saturday. To mark the occasion, an impressive box set of every solo recording comes out on good old-fashioned vinyl records, as does a special George Harrison turntable to play them on, and an expanded version of a book featuring his works.

George had a sad last few years before his death at just 58, having throat cancer surgery in 1998, being attacked by a knife-wielding intruder the next year, and having to deal w details

George Harrison’s 10 best Beatles songs - Saturday, February 25, 2017

In celebration of what would’ve been George Harrison’s 74th birthday, we count down his best Beatles songs.

Today (February 25) would be the legendary George Harrison’s 74th birthday. Before the Beatles split, the guitarist contributed several of the very greatest songs in the Fab Four’s canon. Here are his 10 best Beatles tracks.

10. ‘I Need You’ Appears on: ‘Help!’

About the song: A simplistic love song was the first of many that Harrison would go onto write. Essentially, this was his big break as a songwriter for The Beatles after releasing two albums with no songwriting contribution from the guitarist. They decided to use it and recorded ‘Ticket to Ride’ that same day.

Best lyric: “Please remember how I feel about you, I could never really live without you.”

9. ‘You Like Me Too Much’ Appears on: ‘Help!’

About the song: This song, released on the ‘Help!’ album, was written by George Harrison and uses vocal overdubs for his voice. Bob Dylan later used the piano introduction in the song for his song ‘Temporary Like Achilles’.

Best lyric: “You&rsquo details

“All the world is birthday cake, so take a piece, but not too much.”

George Harrison didn’t exhibit the moody genius of John Lennon. Neither did he possess the charming boyish delight of Paul McCartney or the brilliant dry humour of Ringo Starr. But the ‘quiet Beatle’ owned a personality that went far higher and beyond that of his fellow bandmates. With strikingly good dark looks, an inherent musical tendency, and the soul of an Indian sage, George Harrison’s extraordinary life as a leading but humble musician of the greatest age of rock is perhaps the most interesting one to speculate, possibly because of his incessant urge to keep it behind closed doors.

Born into a working class family in Liverpool, Harrison claimed that he received his musical affinity from his mother, who while expecting him would tune into the mystical tunes of the sitar and tablas from Radio India every Sunday. A backbencher in school, Harrison would spend class-time doodling pictures of the greatest guitars. On a bicycle-ride back home, enlightenment hit him in the form of Elvis Presley’s Heartbreak Hotel, strumming its way out of a neighbour’s window. Determined to harbour this new kindlin details

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