Beatles Bits News Roundup: Cannabis, Canada, jewelry, kebabs and more!

Civilized counts down "5 Beatles Hit Songs with Cannabis Connections."
#2 "Got to Get You into My Life": "It's actually an ode to pot," McCartney later explained, "like someone else might write an ode to chocolate or a good [red wine]."

The Ottowa Citizen spotlights a new crowd-funded book, the "Beatles in Canada," noting that the first Beatles release in North America was a small batch of "Love Me Do" singles pressed at the RCA Victor plant in Smiths Falls.


John Lennon was selected a "Face of Britain" for a new exhibit in London's National Portrait Gallery. Other faces the exemplify the nation, according to the show's curator, historian Simon Schama, include Margaret Thatcher and King Henry VIII.


Model-turned-jewelry-designer Efva Affling has designed a range of Beatles-inspired items in conjunction with Apple Corps. The items will be sold in more than 200 stores nationwide.
Years ago, Michael Jackson bought the entire Beatles song catalog, but The Beatles company Apple still owns the titles to the songs and they came to me and asked me if I wanted to do a collaboration with them.  So I took titles like “Good Day Sunshine” and “Let It Be” and “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds” and put that into the jewelry. I work a lot with words, since I used to be a singer/songwriter and want to move people with lyrics. At first I thought the project was too commercial, but The Beatles were my first big music love. The jewelry has some of their lyrics written out like “Here Comes the Sun” inside of a ring. In some pieces, I used Herkimer diamonds, which are found already faceted, as if someone has been underground tinkering away. The Indians discovered this stone first. For people that believe in healing, this is the strongest energy-giving stone.

The Rain Grill in West Malling, England, is likely the world's first kebab shop to commemorate the Fab Four, the Sevenoaks Chronicle reports.

The take-away has placed a blue plaque on its front wall noting a scene from "The Magical Mystery Tour" was filmed there back in 1967.
The kebab shop's previous incarnation was as a tea room, and before that it was the Town Newsagency.

Beatles' drummer Ringo Starr went into the newsagent during the 1967 film Magical Mystery Tour to buy a ticket from John Lennon for him and his Aunt Jessie.
... In other West Malling Beatles trivia, Lennon also apparently bought a distinctive hat from Baldock E and Sons shop on the corner of Swan Street, which is still there today.

The remastered Beatles 1 entered the Billboard charts at #6


NPR reviews "Beatlebone," by Kevin Barry, a new novel that works as an alternative history of John Lennon's last years.

An epiphany arrives in the form of a talking seal on a windswept beach: "Let me see if I can explain things, John," the seal says. Lennon realizes he still has an album in him, one that will be called Beatlebone. In an exalted state of clarity, he "sees the broad sweep — he sees the tiny detail. This is the one that will settle every score."


On Milwaukee interviews John Kruth, author of "This Bird Has Flown: The Enduring Beauty of Rubber Soul, Fifty Year On."
"Rubber Soul" drew a line in the sand. Either you were taking yourself "seriously" as a recording artist – as Dylan already had – or you weren't and I interviewed a lot of the Beatles' peers at the time – members of the Turtles, Rascals, Byrds, Al Kooper and Steve Katz of Blood Sweat and Tears, and Greenwich Village folk singers John Sebastian of Lovin Spoonful, and Richie Havens – to ask them what were they doing before the album came out and how did "Rubber Soul" change the game, raise the bar for them. A lot of these guys were my heroes growing up.

Via Consequences of Sound:
... a man calling himself James Richards claims to have traveled to another dimension and brought back an unreleased Beatles album entitled Everyday Chemistry.
You can download it here. To me, it just sounds like somebody with Garage Band and too much time on his hands. I'll stick with Klaatu.


New York's Gagosian Gallery has a new exhibit showcasing the photography of the late Linda McCartney and daughter Mary. There are numerous pictures of Paul, of course, including the great shot below.

Vogue and Vanity Fair have both posted interviews with Mary about the show.