Actor Aaron Johnson has revealed he spent months learning to play the guitar before filming his new movie about John Lennon. "I wasn't a musician or a singer," he told the Daily Record. He also spent lots of time familiarising himself with Lennon's favourite music, including records by Elvis Presley and Buddy Holly.
Source: Gear 4 Music
Pattie Boyd art exhibit draws celebrity crowd
A large celebrity-studded crowd gathered for the opening of a photo exhibit by Pattie Boyd, rock legend muse to George Harrison of the Beatles and Eric Clapton, on Monday night in Barbados. Celebrities in attendance included model and actress Jerry Hall (former wife to Mick Jagger), Heiress Sabrina Guinness, and actor and singer Michael Crawford.
Source: Barbados Advocate
Review: Nowhere Boy has extraordinary drama
The reason Nowhere Boy works so well is that it's not one of those "before they were famous" films; nor does it tackle the birth of pop music in Britain. It's more about a boy than a Beatle. Director Sam Taylor-Wood has opted for a natural realism, free of arty flourishes, a style as sensible and conservative as John's Aunt Mimi.
Source: The Times, London
Video: World gets together to sing All You Need Is Love
To raise awareness to fight AIDS in Africa and around the world, on World AIDS Day, Starbucks launched the Starbucks Love Project. Their first event was a global singalong, in over 156 countries, people gathered together and sang the classic Beatles tune "All You Need Is Love."
Music Review: Nowhere Boy Original Soundtrack
The soundtrack to the film Nowhere Boy, which chronicles John Lennon's teenage years, can be easily summed up in one word: raw. Included on this album is rock and roll in its purest, most basic form. The soundtrack compilers clearly studied what the future members of the Beatles were listening to in the early to mid-50s.
Source: Blog Critics
The colorful 20" x 11" x 7" packing box is even rarer, only a couple are known to exist. An owners manual was also included (pictured below). The serial numbers were on a piece of cardboard attached to the inside lid, and in most cases this has fallen off or is missing. The value has nearly doubled in the last three years for upper condition players, selling then from $1500 to $2000 and now in 1997 for $3000 and up, when they can be found.
Ringo Starr - January 8th 1973 - Drawn from the National Westminster Bank Limited. Signed in purple felt.
We remember John Lennon, as he was tragically murdered by that bastard Mark Chapman on 8th December 1980, a great loss to music and the world in general.
With contributions from Alan McGee, Darron J Connett, Dean Cavanagh, Garry Bushell, Jonathan Owen, Mark Thorpe, Matteo Sedazzari, Paolo Hewitt, Patricia Rochester, Russ Litten, Sean Kelly, Simon Wells and Tracey Wilmot.
John Lennon, we love you x
Matteo Zani Editor
The Beatles had not yet conquered America, but the seeds of their success had already been planted. The group would learn during this visit to Paris that they had scored their first American #1 single with 'I Want To Hold Your Hand.'
AFN correspondent Harold Kelley had the opportunity to speak with the Beatles in an interview that preceded their historic February 9th Ed Sullivan television appearance by 17 days.
Kelley met up with the group in their suite at the Hotel George V in Paris, following their January 24th performance at the Olympia Theatre. In spite of this, Kelley begins the interview with the words 'This afternoon in our Paris studios...' likely for continuity purposes. The show would later air as part of the AFN radio program 'Weekend World.'
While the Beatles were a phenomenon in Britain, they were still a very new phenomenon, and their individual names were not yet household words for many people outside of England. Kelley accidentally refers to John as John Lemmon.
Among the many points of interest in this interview, Paul talks about the process between himself and John during the songwriting of 'I Want To Hold Your Hand,' George recalls the story of Ed Sullivan's chance brush with the group at London Airport, and John explains Beatlemania by attributing their success to George's dressing gown. The lengthy interview is presented below in its entirety.
Following this stay in Paris, the Beatles would fly home to London on February 5th before turning America upside-down with their arrival at John F. Kennedy Airport in New York City on February 7th.
Q: "This afternoon in our Paris studios we're visiting with four young men. And if I just mention their first names, such as Paul and George and Ringo and John, I doubt if you'd know about whom we're speaking. But if I said we're here this afternoon with the Beatles, and if we were in England, I think we'd get a great big rousing 'Hurrah!' Wouldn't we, boys?"
PAUL: (dryly) "Oh yeah."
Q: "Well, let's see. We have to my right here, Paul McCartney. Paul tell us, how did the Beatles get going? How did you start?"
PAUL: "It's a funny story, really. (laughs) You know, it was back in the old days. We were all at school together, really, you know. We grew up as school teenage buddies, and things. It developed from there, really."
Q: "Well, did you sing together around school, or..?"
PAUL: "Yeah. George and I were at school together and John was at the school next door, and Ringo was at Butlins."
PAUL: "...and we just started playing guitars, and things. And it went on from there, really, as far as I'm concerned."
Q: "Well, you say those were the olden days. Now within the past year, you have mushroomed in tremendously... almost out of sight popularity. What was the click? What levered this great rage for the Beatles?"
PAUL: "Well, it's funny really. I think it was the Palladium show, you know, the television show in England. And then following hot in the footsteps we had the Royal Variety Command Variety (clears throat comically) performance."
PAUL: "It's difficult to say that, actually. Royal Variety Command Performance for the Queen Mother, you know. And it all came up from there, really. The national newspapers got ahold of it. And they got ahold of Ringo."
JOHN: "And Mike Brown found out about it."
PAUL: "Mike Brown found out about it. Yeah. A lot of columnists and things got onto the idea and started calling it 'Beatlemania.'"
Q: "Lets ask a question here of George Harrison. George, what is the status of Rock & Roll in England today? Is that what you call your music?"
GEORGE: "No, not really. We don't like to call it anything. But the critics and the people who write about it, you know, they have to call it something. So they didn't want to say it was Rock & Roll, because Rock's supposed to have gone out about five years ago. And so they decided it wasn't really Rhythm & Blues... so they decided to call it 'The Liverpool Sound' which is stupid, really, because as far as we were concerned it was just, you know, the same as the Rock from five years ago."
Q: "Can you describe Liverpool's sound?"
GEORGE: "Well, it's more like the old Rock, it's just everything's a bit louder. More bass and bass drum, and everybody sort of sings loud and shouts. (laughs) And that's it!"
Q: "Is the Liverpool Sound, then, 'THE' sound in the U.K. today? In England?"
GEORGE: "Yeah, well, that's... You know, all the records now... Everybody's sort of making records in that style."
Q: "Let's ask Ringo here. Now, you're the drummer. We caught your act at the Olympia the other evening. How long have you been beating those skins?"
RINGO: "Oh, about five years now. I've been with the boys about 18 months... with other groups before that. So that's five years."
Q: "Since you boys have gained your current popularity, have there been many other organizations trying to imitate you, or perhaps take the thunder away from you? Let's ask John Lemmon this."
JOHN: "Well, I suppose, a couple of people have jumped on the... (pause) railway carriage."
JOHN: "I mean, the bandwagon. But it doesn't really matter, you know, because it's flattery and it promotes the whole idea of us if we're away, and there's a few little Beatles still going to remind people of us."
Q: "Paul, let's go back to you for a moment. Whenever anyone sees your pictures, the first thing that strikes them is, naturally, your hairdo."
Q: (laughs) "Or Hair-don't! Some people have written as though you were having the sheepdog cut, or perhaps an early Caeser. What do you call it, and how come you cut it that way?"
PAUL: "To us it just sort of seems the natural thing, really, because it all arose... We came out of the swimming baths one day, and you know how your hair, sort of, flops about after the swimming baths. Well, it stayed that way, you see, when nobody bothered to comb it. And it sort of stayed in a style. So we've never really called it anything, I don't know, until the papers got ahold of it, and they called it the Beatle style. So I suppose we go along with them now, really."
Q: "Do you go to the barber at all?"
PAUL: "Well, you know, now and then. Do and don't."
Q: "Just to keep it trimmed."
PAUL: "Yeah. Just to keep it trimmed. But sometimes we do it ourselves, you know."
JOHN: "With our feet."
PAUL: "The other thing is, its really only our eyebrows that are growing upwards."
Q: "We've been told that in England today there's this 'Beatlemania' going on. What would you say Beatlemania is? That all the girls scream when they see you, and perhaps faint waiting in line. Let's be immodest a moment. What is the attraction?"
GEORGE: (laughs) "I don't know."
JOHN: "I think it's that dressing gown."
JOHN: "George's dressing gown is definitely a big attraction."
PAUL: "No, I don't think any of us really know what it is. We've been asked this question an awful lot of times, but we've never been able to come up with an answer yet, because I think it's a collection of so many different things, like, happening to be there at the right time, at the right moment. (sings) 'But the wrong face.'"
PAUL: "No but... A little bit of originality in the songs, a little bit of a different sound. I don't know. It's an awful lot of things. Maybe the gimmick of the haircut, as well. The luck getting into the national press at the right time. It's an awful lot of luck."
JOHN: (deep, comical voice) "It's all these things and more!"
Q: "Well, you mentioned songs. I understand you boys write your own material."
PAUL: "John and I write them. This is Paul speaking. John and I write."
Q: "Paul, yes. How do you think up an idea? Do you get together regularly, or an idea pops in your mind and you say 'Let's sit down and do it'?
PAUL: "Umm, if an idea does pop in your mind, then you do sit down and say 'Let's do it,' yeah. But if there's no ideas, and say we've been told we've got a recording date in about two days time, then you have got to sit down and sort of slog it out. But you normally get, first of all, just a little idea which doesn't seem bad. And you go on, and then it builds up from that. It varies every time though, really."
Q: "Paul, we've seen you here at the Olympia. Can you compare the French audience with what you're familiar with back in England?"
PAUL: "Well, there's a lot of difference, because in England the audiences are seventy-five percent female. Here, seventy-five percent male. And that's the main difference, really. Because they still appreciate it, but you don't get the full noise and the atmosphere of a place."
GEORGE: "No screams."
Q: "No screams and fainting. Why is it seventy-five percent boys?"
GEORGE: "I don't know, but I think they don't let the girls out (laughs) at night."
JOHN: "I think it's your dressing gown."
GEORGE: "Somebody said that they still have to have chaperones, a lot of them, you see. Whereas in England their out. It's funny. It's the same in Germany, all the boys like the Rock, and it's usually the same on the continent. I don't really know why."
Q: "'I Want To Hold Your Hand' is #1 on the Hit Parade, and we have a copy of it here right now, so let's sit back for a moment and listen to it."
('I Want To Hold Your Hand' is played)
Q: "How did you come to write that, 'I Want To Hold Your Hand'?"
PAUL: "This was one of those songs we were told we definitely had to get down to it. We had to get working. So we went and we found an old disused house. We were sort of walking along one day. We just thought 'We've got to really get this song going.' So we got down in the basement of this disused house, and there was an old piano there. It wasn't really disused. It was, sort of, rooms to let. We found this old piano and we started banging away there."
JOHN: "And I played organ."
PAUL: "Yeah. There was a little old organ there too. So we were just having this sort of informal jam session down there. And we started banging away, and suddenly just a little bit came to us. I think it was just the catch line. And so we started working on it from there. We got our pens and paper out, and we just wrote the lyrics down. And uhh, eventually you know, we had some sort of a song. So we went back and we played it to our recording manager, and he seemed to like it. So we recorded it the next day."
Q: "Do all your songs have a basic theme or story or message?"
JOHN: "Umm, no."
(silence, followed by laughter)
PAUL: (laughing) "That was a quick answer!"
Q: "That was quick."
PAUL: "They don't, but there's one thing that nearly always seems to run through our songs. People always point it out to us. That's the 'I' and 'You' and 'me' always seems to be in the title. You know... 'I' want to hold 'YOUR' hand, She loves 'YOU,' Love 'ME' do, and things like this. Well, I think the reason for that really is that we nearly always try and write songs which are a little bit more personal than others, you see. So by having these prepositions, whatever you call them, I and ME and You in the titles, it makes the songs a little bit more personal. I think that's the only sort of basic message that does run through our songs."
Q: Now, you coined this 'Yeah, yeah, yeah!' Isn't that really sweeping England right now?"
JOHN: "Yeah. Well, that was sort of the main catch phrase from 'She Loves You.' But we stuck that on... We'd written the song nearly, and we suddenly needed more, so we had 'Yeah, yeah, yeah.' And it caught on, you know. They use it for... If you're gonna be 'with it' or 'hip.'"
Q: "It's sort of a trademark for you boys now."
JOHN: "Yeah, we'll have to write another song with it." (laughs)
Q: "Paul, what do you think of your trip to the States? I understand in about a week or ten days you're going to be on the Ed Sullivan show. Could you tell us about it?"
PAUL: "Yeah, that's right. We're gonna do Ed Sullivan's show in New York. And we're taping one for later release, I think. And we're looking forward to those, and then we go down to Florida, Miami... Can't wait! And we do another Ed Sullivan there, but I think before that we do Carnegie Hall, don't we?"
Q: "How were you selected for Ed Sullivan? Was he in England and caught your act or something?"
GEORGE: "When we were flying back... this is the story we heard... we were arriving from Stockholm into London Airport, and at the same time the Prime Minister and the Queen Mother were also flying out, but the airport was just overrun with teenagers. There was thousands of them waiting for us to get back. And Ed Sullivan was supposed to have arrived at that time and wondered what was going on, and you know, he found out it was us arriving. And also our manager went over to the States with another singer called Billy J. Kramer, and he did a couple of TV shows over there. And while he was over there, our manager got the bookings with Ed Sullivan. But he'd also heard of us from this London Airport thing. And that's about it."
Q: "And how about a movie? Is there a movie in the future?"
PAUL: "Mmm, yeah. We've been asked by United Artists to do a feature movie."
Q: "Will it be dramatic, or just strictly wrap around your singing?"
PAUL: "Oh, we don't know yet, really, what it's going to be like. I don't think we'll have to do an awful lot of acting. I think it'll be written 'round the sort of people that we are, and there'll be four characters in it very like us."
Q: "Do you plan to compose two or three songs specifically for the film?"
PAUL: "Actually, we've got to compose six songs specifically for the film. We've got to get down to that, too. That's a job."
Q: "And you boys really haven't had much of a chance to see Paris, have you?"
GEORGE: "Not really, no."
Q: "What do you think of it so far?"
GEORGE: "Well, it's nice. Quite nice."
Q: "How about the French girls compared to the British girls?"
RINGO: "Oh, we havn't seen any yet!"
JOHN: "Yeah well, I'm married so I didn't notice 'em."
Q: "We'll go back to Paul, then."
PAUL: "I think they're great."
Q: "You're single."
PAUL: "Yeah. I think the French girls are fabulous."
GEORGE: "But we have seen more French boys than French girls. So I mean, you know, we can't really tell."
Q: "Well, perhaps when you get to the Ed Sullivan show there will be more girls for you."
GEORGE: "I hope so."
Q: "Any of you been to America before?"
GEORGE: "Yeah, me. I went in September just for a holiday for three weeks."
Q: "Just George Harrison. Well, I see our time is up, boys. Thank you very much, Beatles, for being our guest on AFN this afternoon on Weekend World."
I listen for your footsteps
Coming up the drive
Listen for your footsteps
But they don't arrive
Waiting for your knock dear
On my old front door
I don't hear it
Does it mean you don't love me any more.
I hear the clock a'ticking
On the mantel shelf
See the hands a'moving
But I'm by myself
I wonder where you are tonight
And why I'm by myself
I don't see you
Does it mean you don't love me any more.
Don't pass me by don't make me cry don't make me blue
'Cause you know darling I love only you
You'll never know it hurt me so
How I hate to see you go
Don't pass me by don't make me cry
I'm sorry that I doubted you
I was so unfair
You were in a car crash
And you lost your hair
You said that you would be late
About an hour or two
I said that's alright I'm waiting here
Just waiting to hear from you.
One of the first signs of dissension in the Beatles: were the fierce arguments between Paul and Ringo. Perhaps it was after one of these, that Paul stormed out of studio on that tragic night and we’re hearing of Ringo’s sad evening at home hoping the Paul would come over to resolve their differences. He never made it, and Ringo tells us why:
John’s death Pan is I'm so tired.
I'm so tired, I haven't slept a wink
I'm so tired, my mind is on the blink
I wonder should I get up and fix myself a drink
I'm so tired I don't know what to do
I'm so tired my mind is set on you
I wonder should I call you but I know what you would do
You'd say I'm putting you on
But it's no joke, it's doing me harm
You know I can't sleep, I can't stop my brain
You know it's three weeks, I'm going insane
You know I'd give you everything I've got
for a little peace of mind
I'm so tired, I'm feeling so upset
Although I'm so tired I'll have another cigarette
And curse Sir Walter Raleigh
He was such a stupid git.
You'd say I'm putting you on
But it's no joke, it's doing me harm
You know I can't sleep, I can't stop my brain
You know it's three weeks, I'm going insane
You know I'd give you everything I've got
for a little peace of mind
I'd give you everything I've got for a little peace of mind
I'd give you everything I've got for a little peace of mind
First he describes his mental anguish over missing Paul: “I haven't slept a wink, my mind is on the blink, I'd give you everything I've got for a little peace of mind.”
The real find comes right at the end of the song: a mumbling voice can be heard at the end of this cut and before the next one begins. When this mumbling is played backwards the voice is very clearly saying, “Paul is a dead man miss him miss him miss him.“
(End played backwards 3 times)
Paul is a dead man miss him miss him miss him!
The voice is probably John's, though some people insist it belongs to George.
The granddaddy of all the clues comes elsewhere on The White Album.
One of the more interesting aspects of The White Album is the short little song that appears on the record right before “Revolution Number 9.” It does not appear in the list of song titles nor do its lyrics appear on the lyric sheet.
Can you take me back where I came from?
Can you take me back?
Can you take me back where I came from?
Brother can you take me back?
Can you take me back?
Mm can you take me where I came from?
Can you take me back?
These allegorical lines leads into the selection which convinces many people that the Paul is dead rumor to be something thought of more than just a series of coincidences. The track is “Revolution Number 9.” In the beginning of the song one can hear two men quietly talking they're saying, “Realize I know all about George I'm sorry do you forgive me, yes.”
(First part played)
This is apparently is a conversation with the producer George Martin and could be about placing clues on the track. Then a voice repeats the phrase “Number 9” thirteen times. Listen again:
Number nine, number nine, number nine, number nine, number nine, number nine, number nine, number nine, number nine, number nine, number nine, number nine, number nine.
Why should this phrase be repeated so many times and then again later in the song?
When one plays this phrase backwards, a voice says something entirely different”
Turn me on demand, turning on dead man, turn me on dead man, turn me on dead man, turn me on demand, turning on dead man, turn me on dead man, turn me on dead man, turn me on demand, turning on dead man, turn me on dead man.
In “A Day in the Life” on Sergeant Pepper, Paul sang, “I love to turn you on,” and now, if in answer several years later, we hear a voice saying in a Beatles song “turn me on dead man.”
Continuing frontwards on the cut, many strange sounds can be heard including car horns, a car crashing, fire burning. These clues are very difficult to pick out on the radio, so I will leave it to you to listen to your own version of “Revolution Number 9.” In the middle of the song a man calmly says, “He had a pole, we better get in to see a surgeon. So anyhow he went to the dentist instead. They give him a pair of teeth that weren't any good at all. So my wings are broken and so is my hair I'm not in the mood for words. Find the night watchman, a fine natural and balance, must've got it in the shoulder blades.“
This monologue is not constant and is interrupted by horns, screams and the sound of fire. Other dangling phrases can be heard such as, “take this brother may serve you well.” Some suggest that this might be Paul passing on his fame talent etc. to Billy Campbell the new Paul McCartney.
When this song is played totally in reverse more interesting phrases can be heard, besides the famous “turn me on dead man.” While the crashes, screams, and fire can still be heard, after about one minute and 10 seconds a faint “let me out” can be heard apparently from someone burning in a car. At two minutes and 30 seconds the fire sounds are very clear and we hear the phrase “there were two there are none now.” Paul and Rita? At five minutes and 35 seconds we hear someone screaming, “Let me out! Let me out!”
Depending on the quality of your stereo headphones, other phrases can be heard such as, “if you want it you can prove it. I'm not in the mood for work or words from John.” This song in the whole White LP became the world's most backwards played album and indeed opened up a whole new way of looking at recorded music. One thing should be mentioned in the context: it should be understood by everyone before a record is finalized and finally pressed and released, it goes through a cleaning and checking by engineers and this involves both frontwards and backwards playing of the tape in order to edit out any stray sounds for noises. All Beatles records went through this process as well; therefore, we can conclude that all the extraneous sounds—words that we have just listed—were checked out, and allowed to remain on the record by someone in control of such matters.
This first Apple venture was located at 94 Baker Street, London W1 and was as Paul said "A beautiful place where you could buy beautiful things."
The Apple boutique started life in the 19th century as a four-story house. Over the years it evolved into an office and shops in the busy part of London at the corner of Baker Street and Paddington Street. During the 60's three Dutch designers, Mr. Simon Posthuma, Ms. Josje Leeger, and Ms. Marijke Koeger had an initially successful fashion boutique called the Trend in Amsterdam. It was closed due to financial problems. Simon and Marijke wandered around Europe before moving to London where they met Simon Hayes and Barry Finch. Hayes became the business manager while Finch joined the 3 Dutch designers who became known as the "Fool." Pattie Harrison was familiar with them and even wore some of their designs. How it all started is not clear, but in September 1967 the Beatles gave the "Fool" 100,000 pounds to design and stock the new Apple Boutique.
The "Fool" engaged several dozen art students to paint a huge psychedelic mural across the entire front and side of the store. Instant complaints from local merchants soon had them erasing the mural. The "Fool" also created the psychedelic designs for John's Rolls-Royce and a fireplace for George. Pete Shotton managed the store with Pattie Harrison's sister Jennie. Invitations to the grand opening, on 5 December 1967, read 'Come at 7.46. Fashion Show at 8.16.' John and George were the only Beatles that attended. The only drink available that night was apple juice. The Apple Boutique turned out to be a financial disaster and was closed just 8 months later. On Tuesday morning, 30 July 1968 the staff was told they could give everything away. Paul's "beautiful place" was no more.
Apple Post Card
Apple Paper Shopping Bag
Apple Clothing Tag
This is a homemade documentary from various interviews, sound bytes, and out takes gathered through the past few years. It deals with the year 1963 in the Beatles' lives. This mini-rockumentary is quite long, as it comes in at 1 Hour and 40 Minutes!!! So, if you are a Beatles fan, sure you will enjoy it. If you are a casual listener to the sixties music scene, it will give you some insight into the hectic lives that Beatles lived during this year. If you have any comments or requests, please write to email@example.com
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Many thanks to the original uploader. Go to the original post
Many thanks to the original uploader. Go to the original post
The unused art ended up in the private collection of former Capitol Records President Sal Iannucci and his wife Aileen. Later this month, it will hit the auction block at Bonhams & Butterfields in Los Angeles where it is expected to fetch between $25,000 to $35,000.
The artwork consists of five individual pieces -- four depicting individual toothbrushes labeled for each member of the band plus a fifth showing all four toothbrushes together. Each item is signed and dated 'Jim Dine 1968' in the lower left corner, according to the auction house.
An acclaimed Pop artist, Dine used graphite and watercolor paints to create the works on vellum. Each piece stands approximately 17 inches by 14 inches.
"It's a lovely representation of how art and music can go together," said Sharon Goodman Squires, a specialist at Bonhams.
"The works have really wonderful signature imagery by Dine."
She said she doesn't know about the timing of the sale. "Like many people these days, the owners may be downsizing, but that's just speculation," she said.
The Dine works are part of Bonhams' fall auction of Modern, Contemporary and Latin American Art. The auction is scheduled to take place Nov. 17 in L.A. with a simulcast to the firm's San Francisco gallery.
The auction will consist of more than 200 lots, including works by Andy Warhol, Frank Stella, Diego Rivera, Alexander Calder and more.
Credit: Courtesy of Bonhams & Butterfields - Los Angeles Times
Going to See the Beatles: An Oral History of Beatlemania as Told by the Fans Who Were There
(Santa Monica Press; US: Apr 2008)
The Beatles managed to spend the morning of the next day, Feb. 8th, in relative quiet. John, Paul, and Ringo avoided the mobs of fans awaiting them in front of the Plaza by using a side door, and took a stroll through Central Park (George was stuck in bed with a sore throat). Of course, their “stroll” was really for the benefit of the army of journalists and photographers covering their visit. The streetwise photographers didn’t quite know what to do with the group at first, so they shouted out instructions for poses like “point to the sky!” and anything else that came to mind. Next, the Beatles headed for the CBS theatre on 53rd Street, the home of The Ed Sullivan Show, for rehearsals.
Sullivan had witnessed Beatlemania first-hand during a trip to England back in September, but hadn’t seen or heard the group perform. He was nonetheless impressed with the passion they instilled in their British fans, and in November negotiated with Brian Epstein to have the group perform on three separate Sullivan shows beginning in early February. The group would be paid a total of $10,000 for two live appearances plus a taping of a third performances to be aired later in the year.
The next day, on Sunday afternoon, the group performed a full run-through of the songs they would play on the show that night. They did so in front of a full studio audience, who had the privilege of getting the scoop on the rest of the country by several hours. A different audience was later brought in for the live broadcast. When the program went on the air at 8:00 p.m., it was viewed by an estimated 73 million people—the biggest audience for a television show ever to that date. It was only six weeks after Capitol Records officially released “I Want To Hold Your Hand.”
And it was the night Beatlemania exploded.
June Harvey: My friend’s father worked for an ad agency and it just so happened that he had tickets for The Ed Sullivan Show for that night. A client had given them to him. But he did not want them, so he gave them to us.
Two days before, they came into JFK, and there was quite a bit of fanfare and excitement. I think some of my friends tried to go out to the airport to meet them. I was working on a project for school and couldn’t get off, but I knew we had the tickets. And at that time we thought they were just a passing fad. We had no inkling that they would be some part of music history. It was just so early in their recognition factor. This was February, and their music had only started playing six weeks before. There was some momentum building, but really not any that I thought was over the top, other than when they came into JFK, I remember seeing on the news that there were a lot of screaming fans that had come out there.
The day of the show, my friend and I went down on the subway—we lived in the Bronx—and we’d take the Lexington Avenue line down. We had the tickets, but I do not think they were assigned seats, I think they were just entry tickets into the theatre. We had to wait outside for quite a long time, well over an hour, and it was freezing cold. I do remember that! There were two girls standing right behind us who were British. We struck up a conversation with them. They were on winter holiday, and one of the girls’ brothers went to school with John Lennon, and she knew John. They were from Liverpool, and we talked about their friendship with some of the Beatles, especially John.
It was very electric, it really was, like something exciting was about to happen.
Shaun Weiss: By Sunday I was hooked. Sunday was very interesting for us. My sister and I knew where The Ed Sullivan Show was so we walked down to the theatre with a bunch of friends of ours. As the day progressed, we were trying to find tickets to get in. My sister started to put on crocodile tears, and we had run into these two older people who were standing on line to go in. My sister said, “Do you have any extra tickets?” and they turned around and said, “We actually have tickets for friends of ours, and we don’t know if they’re showing up. But if they don’t show up, you can have them.” So my sister attached herself to them. The friends never did show up, and when it came to getting into the theatre, they only put a certain amount of kids up front. They stuck the rest of us up in the balcony. But it didn’t matter. It was so amazing just to be there and see Ed Sullivan walk out on that stage. We were in the last row of the balcony, by the center aisle. My sister snuck down to the first row of the balcony with one of her friends.
The Beatles kicked off the show with their first set of three songs: “All My Loving,” “Till There Was You,” and “She Loves You.” Later in the show, after performances by the cast of Oliver! (featuring future Monkee Davey Jones), impressionist Frank Gorshin, and other acts commonly seen on Sullivan’s show, the host brought them back to sing “I Saw Her Standing There” and “I Want To Hold Your Hand.”
Shaun Weiss: When they came out to perform, you really lost sight of them onstage. It was just looking around and seeing girls screaming, and girls crying. Being as far up as we were, we really didn’t see them as well as you would on TV sitting in your living room. Being there was a whole different excitement. I was so caught up in this moment, the reality was just being there was the thrill. I don’t even remember the songs that were being played, just that I could not believe these guys from Liverpool were performing, and I was seeing this live. The charm of seeing them for the first time in person, and not really understanding what was happening to me. I was getting caught up in a hysteria that I didn’t understand. Everything else was fogged out.
The theatre had a way of locking you in, so that you couldn’t get out to bother the Beatles leaving. But we just opened the exit door and we all flew out, and tried to get around to the side to see them leave, but obviously they had other ways of getting out that we knew nothing about.
The things I remember about them were just their mannerisms—and how much fun it looked like they were having. But it also looked like they were kind of scared. Just their mannerisms standing there, and Ringo up on the drum set playing and his head shaking… That weekend, walking into it, I was unaware of what I was walking into. For the next five years of my life, I was obsessed with them. And the more I became obsessed with them, the more I geared my life to kind of hang in their corner.
June Harvey: We must have been fairly close-up in line because we were ushered into the balcony and we ended up in the first row. And the Ed Sullivan Theatre was very small, and the balcony hung right over the stage. I think Letterman has taken out the balcony. I was second from the end, and a photographer came in after all of us were seated, and there were a lot of screaming fans directly behind me. We were so close to the photographer that he could not get an angle on us. He leaned in and shot up over us. So all the pictures in the fan magazines were the people sitting right behind us, including the two girls from Liverpool.
The screaming was constant, but I remember hearing them sing, there’s no doubt about it. And we were literally hanging right over the stage so we could see them. It was a memorable experience.
MAGICAL MYSTERY TOUR
JOHN 1972: "Paul wrote it. I helped with some of the lyric."
JOHN 1980: "Paul's song. Maybe I did part of it, but it was his concept."
PAUL circa-1994: "'Magical Mystery Tour' was co-written by John and I, very much in our fairground period. One of our great inspirations was always the barker: 'Roll up! Roll up!' The promise of something-- the newspaper ad that says 'guaranteed not to crack,' the 'high class' butcher, 'satisfaction guaranteed' from Sgt. Pepper... You'll find that pervades alot of my songs. If you look at all the Lennon/McCartney things, it's a thing we do alot."
FOOL ON THE HILL
JOHN 1980: "Now that's Paul. Another good lyric. Shows he's capable of writing complete songs."
PAUL circa-1994: "'Fool On The Hill' was mine and I think I was writing about someone like the Maharishi. His detractors called him a fool. Because of his giggle he wasn't taken too seriously... I was sitting at the piano at my father's house in Liverpool hitting a D6 chord, and I made up 'Fool On The Hill.'"
PAUL circa-1994: "'Flying' was an instrumental that we needed for (the film) 'Magical Mystery Tour' so in the studio one night I suggested to the guys that we made something up. I said, 'We can keep it very, very simple, we can make it a 12-bar blues. We need a little bit of a theme and a little bit of a backing.' I wrote the melody, otherwise it's just a 12-bar backing thing. It's played on the mellotron, on a trombone setting. It's credited to all four (Beatles), which is how you would credit a non-song."
BLUE JAY WAY
GEORGE 1968: "Derek Taylor got held up. He rang to say he'd be late. I told him on the phone that the house was in Blue Jay Way. And he said he could find it okay... he could always ask a cop. So I waited and waited. I felt really nackered with the flight, but I didn't want to go to sleep until he came. There was a fog and it got later and later. To keep myself awake, just as a joke to pass the time while I waited, I wrote a song about waiting for him in Blue Jay Way. There was a little Hammond organ in the corner of this house which I hadn't noticed until then... so I messed around on it and the song came."
YOUR MOTHER SHOULD KNOW
PAUL circa-1994: "I dreamed up 'Your Mother Should Know' as a production number... I've always hated generation gaps. I always feel sorry for a parent or a child that doesn't understand each other. A mother not being understood by her child is particularly sad because the mother went through pain to have that child, and so there is this incredible bond of motherly love, like an animal bond between them. But because we mess things up so readily they have one argument and hate each other for the rest of their lives. So I was advocating peace between the generations. In 'Your Mother Should Know' I was basically trying to say your mother might know more than you think she does. Give her credit."
I AM THE WALRUS
PAUL 1967: "Everyone keeps preaching that the best way is to be 'open' when writing for teenagers. Then when we do we get criticized. Surely the word 'knickers' can't offend anyone. Shakespeare wrote words alot more naughtier than knickers!"
JOHN 1967: "We chose the word (knickers) because it is a lovely expressive word. It rolls off the tongue. It could 'mean' anything."
GEORGE 1967: "People don't understand. In John's song, 'I Am The Walrus' he says: 'I am he as you are he as you are me.' People look for all sorts of hidden meanings. It's serious, but it's also not serious. It's true, but it's also a joke."
JOHN 1968: "We write lyrics, and I write lyrics that you don't realize what they mean till after. Especially some of the better songs or some of the more flowing ones, like 'Walrus.' The whole first verse was written without any knowledge. With 'I Am the Walrus,' I had 'I am he as you are he as we are all together.' I had just these two lines on the typewriter, and then about two weeks later I ran through and wrote another two lines and then, when I saw something, after about four lines, I just knocked the rest of it off. Then I had the whole verse or verse and a half and then sang it. I had this idea of doing a song that was a police siren, but it didn't work in the end (sings like a siren) 'I-am-he-as-you-are-he-as...' You couldn't really sing the police siren."
JOHN 1980: "The first line was written on one acid trip one weekend. The second line was written on the next acid trip the next weekend, and it was filled in after I met Yoko. Part of it was putting down Hare Krishna. All these people were going on about Hare Krishna, Allen Ginsberg in particular. The reference to 'Element'ry penguin' is the elementary, naive attitude of going around chanting, 'Hare Krishna,' or putting all your faith in any one idol. I was writing obscurely, a la Dylan, in those days. It's from 'The Walrus and the Carpenter.' 'Alice in Wonderland.' To me, it was a beautiful poem. It never dawned on me that Lewis Carroll was commenting on the capitalist and social system. I never went into that bit about what he really meant, like people are doing with the Beatles' work. Later, I went back and looked at it and realized that the walrus was the bad guy in the story and the carpenter was the good guy. I thought, Oh, shit, I picked the wrong guy. I should have said, 'I am the carpenter.' But that wouldn't have been the same, would it? (singing) 'I am the carpenter...'"
JOHN 1980: "That's another McCartney. An attempt to write a single. It wasn't a great piece. The best bit was at the end, which we all ad-libbed in the studio, where I played the piano. Like 'Ticket To Ride,' where we just threw something in at the end."
PAUL circa-1994: "'Hello Goodbye' was one of my songs. There are Geminian influences here I think-- the twins. It's such a deep theme of the universe, duality-- man woman, black white, high low, right wrong, up down, hello goodbye-- that it was a very easy song to write. It's just a song of duality, with me advocating the more positive. You say goodbye, I say hello. You say stop, I say go. I was advocating the more positive side of the duality, and I still do to this day."
STRAWBERRY FIELDS FOREVER
JOHN 1968: "Strawberry Fields was a place near us that happened to be a Salvation Army home. But Strawberry Fields-- I mean, I have visions of Strawberry Fields. And there was Penny Lane, and the Cast Iron Shore, which I've just got in some song now, and they were just good names-- just groovy names. Just good sounding. Because Strawberry Fields is anywhere you want to go."
PAUL 1974: "That wasn't 'I buried Paul' at all-- that was John saying 'Cranberry sauce.' It was the end of Strawberry Fields. That´s John´s humor. John would say something totally out of sync, like cranberry sauce. If you don´t realize that John´s apt to say cranberry sauce when he feels like it, then you start to hear a funny little word there, and you think, 'Aha!'"
JOHN 1980: "Strawberry Fields is a real place. After I stopped living at Penny Lane, I moved in with my auntie who lived in the suburbs... not the poor slummy kind of image that was projected in all the Beatles stories. Near that home was Strawberry Fields, a house near a boys' reformatory where I used to go to garden parties as a kid with my friends Nigel and Pete. We always had fun at Strawberry Fields. So that's where I got the name. But I used it as an image. Strawberry Fields Forever. 'Living is easy with eyes closed. Misunderstanding all you see.' It still goes, doesn't it? Aren't I saying exactly the same thing now? The awareness apparently trying to be expressed is-- let's say in one way I was always hip. I was hip in kindergarten. I was different from the others. I was different all my life. The second verse goes, 'No one I think is in my tree.' Well, I was too shy and self-doubting. Nobody seems to be as hip as me is what I was saying. Therefore, I must be crazy or a genius-- 'I mean it must be high or low,' the next line. There was something wrong with me, I thought, because I seemed to see things other people didn't see. I thought I was crazy or an egomaniac for claiming to see things other people didn't see. I always was so psychic or intuitive or poetic or whatever you want to call it, that I was always seeing things in a hallucinatory way. Surrealism had a great effect on me, because then I realized that the imagery in my mind wasn't insanity; that if it was insane, I belong in an exclusive club that sees the world in those terms. Surrealism to me is reality. Psychic vision to me is reality. Even as a child. When I looked at myself in the mirror or when I was 12, 13, I used to literally trance out into alpha. I didn't know what it was called then. I found out years later there is a name for those conditions. But I would find myself seeing hallucinatory images of my face changing and becoming cosmic and complete. It caused me to always be a rebel. This thing gave me a chip on the shoulder; but, on the other hand, I wanted to be loved and accepted. Part of me would like to be accepted by all facets of society and not be this loudmouthed lunatic musician. But I cannot be what I am not."
PAUL 1966: "I like some of the things the Animals try to do, like the song Eric Burdon wrote about places in Newcastle on the flip of one of their hits. I still want to write a song about the places in Liverpool where I was brought up. Places like The Docker's Umbrella which is a long tunnel through which the dockers go to work on Merseyside, and Penny Lane near my old home."
JOHN 1968: "We really got into the groove of imagining Penny Lane-- the bank was there, and that was where the tram sheds were and people waiting and the inspector stood there, the fire engines were down there. It was just reliving childhood."
JOHN 1980: "Penny Lane is not only a street but it's a district... a suburban district where, until age four, I lived with my mother and father. So I was the only Beatle that lived in Penny Lane."
PAUL circa-1994: "John and I would always meet at Penny Lane. That was where someone would stand and sell you poppies each year on British Legion poppy day... When I came to write it, John came over and helped me with the third verse, as often was the case. We were writing childhood memories-- recently faded memories from eight or ten years before, so it was recent nostalgia, pleasant memories for both of us. All the places were still there, and because we remembered it so clearly we could have gone on."
BABY YOU'RE A RICH MAN
JOHN 1968: "In 'Baby You're a Rich Man' the point was, stop moaning. You're a rich man and we're all rich men, heh, heh, baby!"
JOHN 1980: "That's a combination of two seperate pieces, Paul's and mine, put together and forced into one song. One-half was all mine. (sings) 'How does it feel to be one of the beautiful people/ Now that you know who you are...' Then Paul comes in with, (sings) 'Baby you're a rich man,' which was a lick he had around."
ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE
PAUL 1967: "We had been told we'd be seen recording it by the whole world at the same time. So we had one message for the world-- Love. We need more love in the world."
JOHN 1971: "I think if you get down to basics, whatever the problem is, it's usually to do with love. So I think 'All You Need is Love' is a true statement. I'm not saying, 'All you have to do is...' because 'All You Need' came out in the Flower Power Generation time. It doesn't mean that all you have to do is put on a phoney smile or wear a flower dress and it's gonna be alright. Love is not just something that you stick on posters or stick on the back of your car, or on the back of your jacket or on a badge. I'm talking about real love, so I still believe that. Love is appreciation of other people and allowing them to be. Love is allowing somebody to be themselves and that's what we do need."
PAUL circa-1994: "'All You Need Is Love' was John's song. I threw in a few ideas, as did other members of the group, but it was largely ad libs like singing 'She Loves You' or 'Greensleeves' or silly little things like that at the end, and we made those up on the spot."
RINGO 1968: "It sounds like Elvis, doesn't it? No, it doesn't sound like Elvis... it IS Elvis. Even those bits where he goes very high."
JOHN 1980: "Paul. Good piano lick, but the song never really went anywhere. Maybe I helped him on some of the lyrics."
PAUL 1986: "'Lady Madonna' is all women. How do they do it? --bless 'em. Baby at your breast, how do they get the time to feed them? Where do they get the money? How do you do this thing that women do?"
PAUL circa-1994: "The original concept was the Virgin Mary, but it quickly became symbolic of every woman-- the Madonna image but as applied to ordinary working-class women. 'Lady Madonna' was me sitting down at the piano trying to write a bluesy boogie-woogie thing. It reminded me of Fats Domino for some reason, so I started singing a Fats Domino impression. It took my voice to a very odd place."
THE INNER LIGHT
PAUL 1968: "Forget the Indian music and listen to the melody. Don't you think it's a beautiful melody? It's really lovely."
PAUL 1988: "We knew we were good. People used to say to us, 'Do you think John and you are good songwriters?' and I'd say-- "Yeah it may sound conceited but it would be stupid of me to say 'No, I don't,' or 'Well, we're not bad' because we are good." Let's face it. If you were in my position, which was working with John Lennon, who was a great, great man-- It's like that film 'Little Big Man.' He says, 'We wasn't just playing Indians, we was LIVIN' Indians.' And that's what it was. I wasn't just talking about it, I was living it. I was actually working with the great John Lennon, and he with me. It was very exciting."
"The Beatles: Paperback Writer" collects the most illuminating interviews, articles, reviews, and essays on the rock icons, from contemporary accounts of the group's rise in 1962 to recent analyses of their enduring cultural legacy. The band's influence on the Baby Boomer youth culture and its descendants is discussed by figures from all places on the pop culture spectrum: mainstream reporters, rock journalists, cultural commentators, performers, and the band's acquaintances and friends. Provocative articles cover the Beatles' pop-redefining experimentation with song structure and recording techniques and their embracing of psychedelic drugs, hippie utopianism, and pacifism -- all set against the dramatic backdrop of the counterculture. Editor Mike Evans includes penetrating pieces on such fascinating byways as the right-wing claims that the group was communist and the "Paul is dead" myth. The band's acrimonious split and each member's disparate, post-Beatles path are also profiled in this book that's a must-have for any serious Beatles fan.
John Lennon 1940-1980
A Twist of Lennon
The Arty Teddy Boy
Art into Pop
Simon Frith and Howard Horne
John Lennon 1940-1980 (2)
A Cellarful of Noise
Beatle! The Pete Best Story
Pete Best and Patrick Doncaster
Why the Beatles Create All That Frenzy
The Sound of the City
and many more...