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Beatles News

JOHN LENNON created legendary album Imagine in 1971, but fans may not know it was produced by convicted murderer Phil Spector, who died this week. It has been revealed Lennon battled with Spector to prevent him from being treated badly during the album's recording, despite the pair being "good friends".

A year after John Lennon’s second solo album, John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band, the star began working on Imagine, the legendary 1971 album which featured such hits as Imagine, and How Do You Sleep? Years later, in Lennon’s book about the album’s production - Imagine John Yoko - Lennon spoke out on why he brought famed music producer Phil Spector into the album’s production in the first place. Spector, who recently died whilst in prison for murder, was infamous for being ruthlessly cruel to his pop acts - but Lennon explained how he “didn’t allow” Spector to treat him that way.

Speaking in his book, Lennon candidly wrote about the arrival of Spector into the album’s creation.

Source: Callum Crumlish/express.co.uk

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Ringo Starr revealed the incredible last thing George Harrison said to him on his deathbed in a 2011 documentary. Picture: Grove Street/Spitfire Pictures

Ringo Starr recalled the last ever words his great friend and fellow-Beatle George Harrison said to him in his final days at his home in Switzerland, before his death on November 30, 2001.

Ringo Starr revealed the last thing Beatles' star George Harrison said to him on his deathbed, and it's incredibly moving.

In footage taken from the Martin Scorsese documentary George Harrison: Living in the Material World, Ringo Starr reveals what was said on his last visit to the Beatle star's home in Switzerland.

Source: smoothradio.com

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Just over 50 years ago, The Beatles released their final studio album in Let It Be. While mainly loved by fans alongside much of the Fab Four’s work, the final mixing by producer Phil Spector – who died in prison today while serving a 2003 murder conviction – proved particularly controversial. Originally, the Let It Be album was going to be called Get Back after the record’s final song before Spector assembled an album in early 1970 under the title of Paul McCartney’s iconic track.

In Spector’s final mixing, he removed Don’t Let Me Down, the B-side of the Get Back single and instead included a 1968 version of Across the Universe.

The late producer also famously put in background studio chatter by The Beatles and included orchestral and choir overdubs on four of the songs.

McCartney was not pleased with Spector’s take on the album and in 2003 initiated the release of an alternative mix in Let It Be…Naked, which omitted The Beatles’ comments plus Spector’s embellishments.

Source: George Simpson/express.co.uk

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Over the course of the 1960s it seemed like The Beatles went through quite a metamorphosis. Starting off as a plucky quartet from Liverpool, England, the band transitioned from all-out pop band to transcendent hippies. A lot of discussion has been had over when these changes occurred, but John Lennon himself once spoke out about what album spurred it all on.

After the band’s fifth album, Help!, The Beatles were keen to change things up.

During the summer of 1965 each of the members opened their eyes to new creative avenues, mostly because they were allegedly smoking a lot more cannabis than ever before.

December of 1965 saw the release of the band’s sixth album, Rubber Soul.

The iconic LP included a number of legendary hits, including Nowhere Man, Girl, Run for your Life, and Drive My Car.

Source: Callum Crumlish/express.co.uk

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While The Beatles has their set roles in the band, you couldn’t be certain you were hearing, say, George Harrison play a guitar solo even though he was the Fab Four’s lead guitarist. Over the group’s recording run, both John Lennon and Paul McCartney stepped in with the occasional guitar solo.

The instrumental switches didn’t end there. On “She Said She Said,” you get an example of Harrison taking over on bass after McCartney left the studio following a “barney” of sorts. And on “Back in the U.S.S.R.,” you had multiple Beatles on drums after Ringo Starr walked out on the band.

But it can be even trickier to figure out who’s playing piano on Beatles songs. Later on, McCartney would be pounding the keys on tracks such as “Lady Madonna” and “Martha My Dear.” Yet you don’t hear him tackling the piano solo on “Lovely Rita,” recorded the previous year.

George Martin, the Parlophone Records chief who produced The Beatles, took the “Lovely Rita” solo, just as he’d done on Lennon’s “In My Life” in ’65. When the band recorded “You Really Got a Hold on Me” details

The Beatles all came from similar areas in Liverpool, but their backgrounds were not as closely linked. Nevertheless, they were able to make waves in the music industry ultimately even further afield than their hometown. Those relationships eventually fractured to the point where The Beatles broke up - by why did George Harrison threaten to quit the band at one point?

On January 15, 1969, The Beatles had a very important meeting.

John Lennon, Sir Paul McCartney, Sir Ringo Starr and George Harrison sat together for five hours, and George made it clear he was prepared to quit the band for good.

At this time, John had begun seeing his soon to be wife, Yoko Ono, who was placed at the centre of the band’s break-up.

It turns out George was pretty furious about Yoko’s presence with the band as well.

Source: Jenny Desborough/express.co.uk

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The Beatles only worked together for just over a decade, from around 1960 to around 1970. In that time the Fab Four changed the way music and bands functioned, creating timeless albums and music along the way. Over the course of the last 50 years, a number of documentaries have been produced about the band, and their work.

It has now been announced that a brand new documentary is being produced to tell the story of the iconic recording studio which was used to mix the band’s 11th album, Abbey Road.

The documentary is titled If These Walls Could Sing, and will supposedly tell the “untold secrets” of the iconic location.

Abbey Road Studios is famed for recording one of the most iconic albums of all time, and now its story is going to be told for the first time.

Even more exciting, the feature-length doc is due to be shot by Paul McCartney’s daughter, Mary McCartney.

READ MORE: The Beatles: John Lennon 'terrified' David Bowie when they first met

Source: Callum Crumlish/express.co.uk

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Paul McCartney has a musical career that’s spanned more than 60 years, and he’s still producing new music. With that many years of songs to choose from, it’s understandable that he can’t play all of them at every performance. But some fans wish he would dig a little deeper and bring back some old favorites.

They told him so recently, and he explained what’s holding him back.

When you start your music career in an iconic band it’s a pretty tall order to establish a significant solo career later on. But according to NPR, McCartney was up to that challenge.

After spending the ’60s changing the world of music as a member of The Beatles, he didn’t let their breakup in 1970 slow him down. The same year, he released a solo album, McCartney.

He then went on to form a new band, Wings. After several successful years, Wings disbanded in 1980, and he released another self-titled solo album, McCartney II.

Source: cheatsheet.com

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"We're still pals," Ringo notes. "We don't hang out with each other a lot. But if we're in the same country, and if we're in the same town, we always have a dinner, and we say hi or he comes over here or I go over to his house."

Starr also says he enjoys getting the chance to perform live with McCartney occasionally.

"I love that, getting up with him," says the 80-year-old drummer. "We did it at the O2 [arena] in England [in 2018]. And then he called me [in 2019] and he said, 'I'm doing Dodger Stadium, if you want to do a few numbers.' 'Sure.' So he picked three numbers, and I got up and went down there."

Adds Ringo, "[I]t's magic for the audience as well as us. I love playing with him. The audience is like, 'Oh, there's two of them! Wow.' It lifts everything, in a joyous way."

Source: wxhc.com

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Sir Paul McCartney is one of the most known people on the planet, but for the majority of 2020 it seems that no one can recognize him.

The face mask he wears amid the COVID-19 pandemic is giving him anonymity, and the former Beatle loves it because he can "go anywhere and do anything."

"We love the mask," he told Howard Stern. "I walked into work today wearing a mask, you know, looking at everyone. Looking them right in the eye. 'Hello. You don't know who this is. Do you know who I think I am?'"

While the obscurity is nice, Sir Paul knows that the year has been trying for far too many people.

"Even though it's been probably the most frightening year of our lives … 'cause you know, when there were other big crises like AIDS, the bird flu or SARS or whatever, they tended to happen to other people, but this thing's happening to us, no matter who you are or what you've been doing," he said. "In this most frightening year of our lives, I think we've got to kind of take some lessons from it, like, it's quite good to slow down, it's very good to be with your family, have time for people instead of just rushing around, and to me that was the silver lining."

Source: Mark Gray/wonderwall.com details

The Beatles made quite the impact on the music industry in the 1960s. A lowly quartet from Liverpool went on to become the biggest band in the world in just a few years - and it was mostly thanks to their incredibly composed hits that were supremely catchy. One of their most popular albums of all time was 1965’s Help! The album saw the beginning of the band’s transition into timeless pop band, utilising such hits as Help!, Ticket to Ride, and Yesterday. Despite the incredible music on the record, John Lennon famously “hated” one of his own songs.

Side two of the LP featured It’s Only Love, a short soliloquy written and performed by Lennon.

While it certainly isn’t as good as many of the other songs on the album, it is not a dreadful song by any means.

Despite this, in 1980 Lennon told David Sheff that he truly “hated” the track.

During the interview with Playboy at the time, Lennon was keen to condemn the song completely.

Source: Callum Crumlish/express.co.uk

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Paul McCartney is remembering a moment he experienced after John Lennon died. "When you go through your grieving," he told me once, "and you just sort of think: 'What if he was here? What might we say?' We might talk about when we met and, being John, he might say: 'Ah, f**k off,' because we were that kind of mates, and I'd say to him, 'No, you f**k off.' It's like when you think of someone who's passed away, you get to see them again."

hat night, he also talked to me about his late mother, Mary. "She died when I was 14," he says. "She was Irish but she was sort of posh-Liverpool. She grew up in the other capital of Ireland, Liverpool."

The place helped inspire Paul to write one of his most controversial compositions, 'Give Ireland Back To The Irish' in 1972. What prompted the song?

"The fact that Bloody Sunday had happened," he says. "That fact, that it came over as our lads - the British troops - killing our mates. It would have been different if it was in the Sudan - you would have been able to remove it to your own imagination - but there, particularly as I am of Liverpool-Irish descent, it was our people killing our people to me."

Source: Barry Egan/independent.ie

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COVID is unsparing, as we all know. Now the great Olivia Harrison, beloved and devoted widow of Beatle George Harrison, reports that she is recovering from the virus in a London hospital.

Olivia posted to Instagram today: “Redesigning my hospital room curtain. Unlucky to get covid but on the mend. Gratitude to all the selfless carers.”

Olivia was George’s second wife (after Patti Boyd) and mother of his only child, son Dhani. Olivia and Dhani have been steadfast in preserving George’s legacy. She’s soft spoken, elegant, and up to the task of representing George in the Beatles’ extended family. (Her mother named her for Olivia de Havilland, so that gave her a good start!)

Source: Roger Friedman /showbiz411.com

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When The Beatles first came to America, only a few months had passed since the tragic assassination of JFK, and our nation was still in mourning. Their appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show – then a Sunday night American instituion – was a well-needed shot of joy for the whole country still in shock. But it was also, famously, a profoundly galvanizing event in the lives of countless musicians who recognized their futures that night.

Tom Petty was one. Before that night, the idea of a self-contained band – writing, singing and playing the songs themselves – had not occurred to him. After that night, it was the only way.

Ann Wilson and Tom Petty are the same age, both born in 1950, so both took that in at that most impressionable age, and both decided then to become rock & rollers for life. And unlike almost all the other kids then making that same decision, they both succeeded. Ann did it with her little sister Nancy. Here she is, from an interview we did back in 2014, on the impact of The Beatles in her life.

Source: americansongwriter.com

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The two remaining members of The Beatles may not be recording any new music, but Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr have performed together multiple times over the last few years. There was a set at the 30th annual Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame induction ceremony in 2015, plus a 2018 performance at the O2 in England. Starr recently sat down with The Irish News, and he talked about how much he enjoys playing with his old bandmate.

“I love that, getting up with him,” he said. After their O2 performance, Starr said McCartney called him up to do a few numbers at Dodger Stadium. “And it’s magic for the audience as well as us. I love playing with him.” Starr also talked about that the audience’s reaction to seeing them both on stage. “The audience is like, ‘Oh, there’s two of them! Wow.’ It lifts everything, in a joyous way. So, yeah, I had a great time.”

Source: Wongo Okon/uproxx.com

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Quick, name the most avant-garde member of The Beatles. If you said Ringo, you and I should have a serious discussion. Certainly, George Harrison brought Eastern music to the group, so that was unique. And John Lennon did contribute one of the oddest tunes to the official Beatles catalog with “Revolution 9” on The Beatles (White Album). That over-eight-minute cacophony includes random noises, clips from radio shows, babies crying, and so on. It confused some and amused others, but generally became the talk of the music community.

However, in reality, the first band member to toe the cutting edge was Paul McCartney who enlisted his bandmates in what would be called “Carnival of Light.”

In 1967, The Beatles were just beginning sessions for songs, many of which would appear on Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band. During a break from recording “Penny Lane,” Paul asked the group to “indulge him for ten minutes.

Source: Will Wills/culturesonar.com

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“Love, love me do/ You know I love you/ I’ll always be true/ So please love me do.”

Do you hear a young man’s earnest appeal against a trilling harmonica? This plea, first made by The Beatles to American audiences in 1964, proved to be an effective one.

On this day, Jan. 10, 1964, the British band’s first full-length album was released in the United States by Vee-Jay Records. America immediately loved The Beatles back, purchasing over one million copies of the debut album “Introducing… The Beatles” in mere months.

The Beatles’ popularity reached icon status with their live performance on The Ed Sullivan Show on Feb. 9, 1964. According to Nielsen records at the time, nearly 40 percent of the U.S. population — about 73 million people — tuned in. The screams of the live audience at that Sullivan taping even drown out the voices of John Lennon and Paul McCartney at times.

Source: Jessica Cosmas/dailyadvance.com

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Paul McCartney joins Nile Rodgers for a fascinating masterclass discussion on songwriting in a new episode of Apple Music 1’s Deep Hidden Meaning Radio with Nile Rodgers.

Situated in his home recording studio where he recorded his latest album McCartney III, the former Beatle takes listeners back into the songwriter’s room with John Lennon as the two wrote “A Day In The Life” before bringing it to the recording studio with George Martin.

He also recalls how he wrote the Wings hit “Jet,” his thoughts on how people interpret his songs, and a prized possession of his- the original double bass used by Bill Black on early Elvis Presley recordings. Rodgers in turn reveals how one of Paul’s songs altered the course of his life and the life-changing moment many teenagers experienced in February 1964- seeing the Beatles on The Ed Sullivan Show.

Source: americansongwriter.com

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David Bowie and John Lennon first met in scenes more reminiscent of an awkward children’s playdate than a summit of two of rock’s greatest ever stars, according to a new interview with music producer Tony Visconti.

Speaking on the programme Bowie: Dancing Out in Space, airing on BBC Radio 4 and 6Music on 10 January to mark five years since Bowie’s death, Visconti, who produced 11 of Bowie’s studio albums, tells the story of how the pair met in a New York hotel room, ahead of their collaborations on Bowie’s 1975 song Fame and his cover of the Lennon-penned Beatles song Across the Universe.

“He was terrified of meeting John Lennon,” says Visconti, who was asked by Bowie to accompany him and “buffer the situation”.
About one in the morning I knocked on the door and for about the next two hours, John Lennon and David weren’t speaking to each other. Instead, David was sitting on the floor with an art pad and a charcoal and he was sketching things and he was completely ignoring Lennon. So, after about two hours of that, he [John] finally said to David, ‘Rip that pad in half and give me a few sheets. I want to draw you.’ So David said, ‘ details

Paul McCartney joins Nile Rodgers for a fascinating masterclass discussion on songwriting in a new episode of Apple Music 1’s Deep Hidden Meaning Radio with Nile Rodgers.

The 30-minute plus conversation is available now on-demand for Apple Music subscribers. American Songwriter is premiering exclusive excerpts here today. Tune in and listen to the conversation in full for free this Saturday (Jan. 9) at 8am LA / 11am NY / 4pm London at https://music.apple.com/us/curator/1481637462
Situated in his home recording studio where he recorded his latest album McCartney III, the former Beatle takes listeners back into the songwriter’s room with John Lennon as the two wrote “A Day In The Life” before bringing it to the recording studio with George Martin.

Source: americansongwriter.com

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“This is very difficult for me,” said Starr in a statement on his website in March, “in 30 years I think I’ve only missed 2 or 3 gigs nevermind a whole tour. But this is how things are for all of us now, I have to stay in just like you have to stay in, and we all know it’s the peace and loving thing we do for each other. So we have moved the Spring tour to 2021. My fans know I love them, and I love to play for them and I can’t wait to see you all as soon as possible. In the meantime stay safe. Peace and Love to you all.”

The tour is set to kick off in Asbury Park, N.J. on June 1 and travel through the United States until June 27, when the tour ends in Clearwater, Fla.. As of now, there is one stop scheduled in Mexico on October 20.

Check out the list below to see if the “Photograph” singer is coming to your area.

Get ticket information here!

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Sir Ringo Starr had no plans to slow down before the coronavirus pandemic intervened. His youthful appearance and fizzing energy bely his 80 years – and had it not been for Covid-19, the man born Richard Starkey in a working-class area of Liverpool would have been on the road in 2020.

But it turns out even a former Beatle cannot escape the consequences of a global health crisis. As it stands, Sir Ringo’s All Starr Band is set to return to the stage in June, though he admits the plans are far from set in stone due to the continued disruption caused by the virus.

The pause in performing gave him a chance to look back on three decades with the group, putting together the book Ringo Rocks: 30 Years Of The All Starrs. Reflecting proved to be an emotional experience, Starr explains from his home in Los Angeles.

"The first band was like everything else – it’s brand new. And, ‘Oh, wow, it’s working’. And actually, people are coming to see it. That’s the good news. And I had a lot of great players." Musicians who have been part of the ever-evolving line-up include Eagles guitarist Joe Walsh, rocker Peter Frampton, New Orleans musician Dr. John and R&B star Billy details

This week in 1962, The Beatles travelled in a van from Liverpool to a London audition with inauspicious results.

The band, dressed in leather and scruffy to boot - according to the website On This Day - travelled 220 miles for the famous recording audition.

A&R man Dick Rowe was ready and waiting at the Decca studios. His assistant, Mike Smith, had been to see the Beatles perform in Liverpool at what was to become the Cavern Club and had suggested the audition to their manager, Brian Epstein.

The session lasted approximately an hour and the Beatles - John Lennon, George Harrison, Paul McCartney and the group's first drummer Pete Best - performed 15 songs.

The boys were nervous, according to Ray Setterfield writing in On This Day. The session was not as good as it might have been. Smith, however, told the Liverpudlian lads that he "saw no problems" and they would hear what Decca would decide "in a few weeks."

Source: rte.ie

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Last month, Sir Paul McCartney released his new album McCartney III, in which he once again sings and plays all the instruments by himself. During the promotion of the new solo record, the 78-year-old took part in a Reddit AMA and fans were asking The Beatles legend who he wished he could collaborate with. A fan wrote: “Hey Sir Paul! If you could collab[orate] with any musician in the future, who would it be?”

Sir Paul replied: “I've always had a sneaky feeling to collaborate with Bob Dylan, but it's never happened. It's intriguing, but…”

The 78-year-old has always been a big fan of his almost 80-year-old contemporary and has been saying for over a decade he’s like to work with him.

Another fan asked: “Paul, if you could choose one artist from any point in history to make an album with, who would it be?”

He replied: “There's an awful lot of them. John Lennon, he's pretty good.”

Source: George Simpson/express.co.uk

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Gerry Marsden died on Sunday, January 3 at the age of 78-years-old after being diagnosed with a blood infection in his heart. The Liverpool FC anthem singer was also the leader of Merseybeat band Gerry and the Pacemakers who were managed by Brian Epstein and recorded by George Martin just like The Beatles. Now Sir Paul McCartney and Sir Ringo Starr have paid tribute to Marsden on Instagram, who Macca says was the Fab Four’s first big rival in the early days.

Sir Paul posted a picture from 1963’s Roy Orbison/Beatles UK tour, which also included Gerry and the Pacemakers.

The two bands and American singer are pictured in what looks like a dressing room.

The 78-year-old Beatle wrote: “Gerry was a mate from our early days in Liverpool. He and his group were our biggest rivals on the local scene.

“His unforgettable performances of You’ll Never Walk Alone and Ferry Cross the Mersey remain in many people’s hearts as reminders of a joyful time in British music. My sympathies go to his wife Pauline and family. See ya, Gerry. I’ll always remember you with a smile. - Paul.”

Source: George Simpson/express.co.uk

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