Tuesday, January 24, 2017

"A is for Apple" Vol. 2 continues a deep history of the Beatles' record company

Apcor Books, a fan press has provided details for the second volume of its in-depth history of the Beatles' Apple Corps.

The first volume, issued in June 2015, quickly sold out a small number of new editions have been published. Copies of both volumes can be ordered here.


IT'S JANUARY AND IT'S WINTER NOW, like every January has some sort of Winter. The winter of 1969 for the Beatles and Apple was, as George Harrison put it so aptly, a Winter of Discontent. The long sessions at Twickenham and later at Apple took their toll on the Beatles who were already slightly burned out from the White Album sessions the previous year. While Paul was the one to try and get something, anything, together for the Beatles, the other three were not so gung-ho anymore to go along with the Paul-instigated Beatles projects. George had just spent nearly a month in the USA, jamming with various musicians and having a great time, John was immersed in Yoko and a dependence on stuff somewhat stronger than a reefer and Ringo seemed to be more interested in his upcoming role in The Magic Christian movie.
While the sessions lasted merely a month (Sgt Pepper took nearly four months to make), so much happened that it would take a book to describe all that was going on. And that book is here now. A Is For Apple, the second installment in our ongoing series of books on all things Apple is nearly finished and will be published in April this year. But of course not only the so-called Get Back sessions 'happened' in January, or the following months. There was Mary Hopkin's Post Card album, as well as Jackie Lomax's Is This What You Want album. Doris Troy and Billy Preston entered the scene at Apple and The Beatles' Yellow Submarine album hit the streets.
Volume 2 of A Is For Apple covers the Get Back sessions and Mary and Jackie's albums in great detail. The Yellow Submarine album takes up more than 60 pages by itself. Volume 2 covers the period of January to March 1969. And while everyone will be familiar with these releases, maybe not in such great detail, Volume 2 also offers information on lesser known Apple acts from this epoch, such as John Surman, Mike Westbrook, Mike Cooper, the Misunderstood, Flamma Sherman, Stefan Grossman, Peter Cooper, Slow Dog and John Fitch.
Volume 2 has a chapter on Timothy Travel, a puppet series produced by Apple, which didn't progress beyond a pilot episode and is more or less totally forgotten. Allen Klein's reign is just around the corner and John and Yoko are busy making their Rape movie. (White) Trash issue their superb Road To Nowhere single and Brute Force's King of Fuh is being picked up by George Harrison. Two Virgins gets its USA release and a four album pack of Beatles hits gets nixed before release. Bubble Puppy, Mary Jane Bann'd and Stone Down are all nearly signed by Apple while The Iveys go on national TV. John and Yoko stage their first Bed-In in Amsterdam and Paul records with The Fourmost. The amount of day-to-day activities related to Apple in these three months is astounding. All this is covered in great detail in Volume 2 of A Is For Apple.
Slow Dog were a band that won a talent contest organized by Apple in Cambridge and were destined to be signed by Apple. Why this didn't work out in the end is all revealed in A Is For Apple Volume 2. Four of the band's recordings made around the time of the contest will be included on an EP exclusively available with this book, kindly donated to us by Dave Kelly from Slow Dog and it marks the first time these recordings have ever seen an official release!
While we (Axel and Ed) are the main writers of the A Is For Apple series, for Volume 2 we have been privileged to have the ongoing support and help by our dear friend and top collector Antonio Caroselli, who has contributed a great number of rarities from his own collection to be used in Volume 2, while also contributing a substantial part of the text; and that of Sara Schmidt from the superb Meet The Beatles For Real blog http://www.meetthebeatlesforreal.com/p/blog-page.html, who has written a superbly interesting piece on the Apple Scruffs.
Volume 1 of A Is For Apple was released in April 2015 to worldwide acclaim; all copies of the book sold out within a month and are now sought-after collector’s items which fetch high prices on the second-hand market. Ever since, people have been asking for a reprint of Volume 1. Well, we are glad to announce we will be offering a very limited number of reprints of this book, so if you missed out on Volume 1, this is your chance to grab a copy. Originally, Volume 1 came with a two-sided disc with two previously unheard Jackie Lomax demos, but due to agreements we had with Jackie, a reprint of that single is no longer an option. Instead, we are proud to be able to offer two previously unreleased Apple recordings on a vinyl single with the reprint, one of which is an Apple published song by Miles and Robert Priestley (who are also featured on one of RPM’s great Apple published acts compilations, 94 Baker Street Revisited), while the B-side is a version of Ev'rything's Al'right by the Mojos performed by an unknown group and found on an Apple acetate. Of course we will give the buyers of the original Volume 1 the opportunity to buy this single as well. 

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