Friday, January 31, 2020

Watch George and Paul (Simon) duet on SNL

These videos tend to vanish from YouTube, so look while you can.

Via Far Out Magazine: George Harrison and Paul Simon play "Homeward Bound" and "Here Comes the Sun" on "Saturday Night Live," 1976.

James Taylor talks about being signed to the Beatles' record label

Billboard advertising James Taylor's first LP for the Beatles Apple Records label
In a new interview, James Taylor tells People magazine about going to London at age 19 in 1967 and being signed by The Beatles' fledgling Apple Records label:
“Success was getting a record contract,” Taylor explains. “In those days that’s how you got on the radio, that’s how you got an audience, and that’s how you got a career.” He was aiming high. The Beatles had recently launched their own record label, Apple, and were actively seeking new talent to develop. Their offices had been inundated following an open call for submissions, but Taylor had an insider connection — albeit a circuitous one.
His childhood friend and former Flying Machine bandmate Danny “Kootch” Kortchmar had been in a band called the King Bees, which had accompanied the British pop duo Peter & Gordon on tour several years prior. The “Peter” in question was Peter Asher, brother of Paul McCartney’s girlfriend, actress Jane Asher. McCartney was particularly close to his almost-brother-in-law. During the years he’d lived in the Asher family townhouse on Wimpole Street, they slept literally across the hall from one another, and frequently socialized in the London’s intellectual circles. McCartney had penned several of Peter & Gordon’s early hits, and when the group split in 1967, he tapped Asher to head up A&R at their fledgling label.
“I called Kootch up and said, ‘Do you still have a number for Peter Asher?’” Taylor recalls. “And he said, ‘I don’t know if it’s any good but this is the number that I’ve got.’ I called it up, Peter answered, and I said, ‘I’m a friend of Danny’s, a songwriter from North Carolina. I’ve got a demo. Could you take a listen to it?’” Asher liked what he heard and invited Taylor to Apple’s Central London offices. “He said, ‘You can play for whatever Beatle is in the building at the time.’ And that’s what happened.”
“I sat down and played my song, ‘Something in the Way She Moves,’ for Paul and George [Harrison]. They went out of the room and Peter said, ‘What do you think?’ Paul said, ‘Hmm. Sounds good.’ And Peter said, “Well, do you want to make a record with him?” And Paul said, “Yeah sure.’ And that was it.”

Vintage Beatles pic

With deejay Tony Prince.

The Beatles with deejay Tony Prince

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

New comic explores the "Paul is Dead" hoax

The cover of the new Paul is Dead graphic novel, which tells an alternative reality story of the Beatles
A new graphic novel from Image Comics focuses on one of the weirdest stories associated with the Beatles - the rumors that began in 1969 that Paul McCartney was dead and had been replaced by a double.

Unlike in real life, in Paolo Baron and Ernesto Carbonetti's comic, Paul truly is dead, and the rest of the Beatles are left to figure out why.

Newsarama has an interview with the comic's creators here.
I’ve never believed in those clues. They’re just a bunch of random coincidences discovered by overheated fans. My book is about a strong friendship and four young men coming together and suddenly losing one of their friends…
"Paul is Dead" is out April 22. You can pre-order it now from Amazon.

Here are some sample pages from the comic.

And, just for fun, here's a 1970 Batman comic inspired by the then-recent "Paul is Dead" phenomenon.

Batman #222, published in 1970, was inspired by the Beatles "Paul is Dead" rumors

Vintage press invite to the Beatles "Magical Mystery Tour" launch

Featured in the recent auction of memorabilia from the collection of DJ Tony Prince.

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Peter Jackson's Beatles film gets preview

The Beatles in 1969
Footage from Peter Jackson's upcoming documentary about the Beatles' Get Back/Let it Be project was previewed at the Universal Music showcase last weekend.

Variety published these details:
“We have created a brand-new film that will attempt to bust the myth that the ‘Let It Be’ sessions were the final nail in the Beatles’ coffin,” Jones said.
And sure enough, an amazing counter-narrative to “Let It Be” film has ensued: It’s brighter both visually and spiritually, with many, many shots of the Beatles joking around, making fun of each other, singing in silly accents and generally indulging in vintage Moptop hijinks. It also features many scenes of the group rehearsing songs from the “Abbey Road” album — their true swan song, which would be recorded over the following summer — and even rough versions of songs that would appear on solo records. On the basis of this clip, Beatles fans will lose their minds over this film.
 The new film is titled "Let it Be Happy!" No... I'm just making that up.

Vintage Beatles "Rubber Soul" promo posters

Saturday, January 25, 2020

Beatles social media gallery Jan. 25

Ringo: 'I saw him on the 15th November. I was staying at The Plaza. We went over to New York for a while. And I hadn't seen him for a while because, you know, we see each other wherever we are. And he came over with Yoko for an hour and we had such a great time because they stayed five hours. And it didn't matter that it was a year between we didn't see each other, it was always fine when we did, but it was a particularly great time that we, that I had, anyway... Oh, man, they were happy. They were two people in one.'⁣
(Barbara Walters interview, 1981)⁣
The Plaza Hotel, 768 5th Ave, New York, 15 November 1980.

This polaroid is the last known photograph of John and Ringo together, at The Dakota - from a year earlier, on 29 May 1979. ⁣
“That was the thing about The Beatles: they never stuck to one style. They never did just blues, or just rock. We loved all music.” - John

“All I’m interested in is the sound. I like it to be whatever happens.” - John

'Everything is clearer when you're in love.'

Beatle quotes

Friday, January 24, 2020

Beatles book news: "A is for Apple Vol. 3" on the way

A is for Apple Vol. 3 book cover
Apcor Productions, which is documenting the history of the Beatles Apple Corps via a series of limited-edition hardcover books, has announced it's latest volume.

Many of you have been wondering and, indeed, asking us; where is it? Ideally, A Is For Apple Volume 3 would have been released last year, but some personal tragedies as well as a Hard Disk crash unfortunately delayed things quite considerably.
But Apcor is glad to announce that the books have finally arrived and are ready for immediate shipping!
Like Volumes 1 and 2, Volume 3 is another beast of a book, clocking in at nearly 660 pages in full colour, weighing 3.2 kilograms, individually numbered and with a hard cover featuring a superb design by our very own artist Ronnie Dannelley.
Volume 3 covers the period April to August 1969, the period where Apple’s ‘De-Klein’ set in.
It contains hundreds of rare photos and documents, biographies and extensive discographies of Apple-related record releases, as well as contributions by Paul Wane (of Tracks, Chorley, Lancashire, UK), Sara Schmidt (of the blog) and Joachim Noske (writer of The Beatles Covered) and literate by the one and only, nearly famous left-handed bassist Mike Carpenter.
More info here.

Vintage Beatles Pop Pics magazine - Paul

Thursday, January 23, 2020

George Harrison's Dark Horse label revived for new releases

Dark Horse Records, the label George Harrison created to release music from himself and others in the early 1970s, is being revived.

Here's a news releasing outlining the label's plans. Weird to think about Joe Strummer albums coming out via Dark Horse!

BMG has announced a new multi-faceted global partnership with Dark Horse Records, the imprint led by Dhani Harrison and manager David Zonshine. The agreement initially brings releases from the acclaimed catalog of George Harrison’s legendary label Dark Horse Records and his Indian label imprint HariSongs, as well as Joe Strummer’s solo catalog, including his works alongside The Mescaleros.

Dark Horse Records will also release new recordings through BMG including the current Tom Petty estate charity single ‘For Real – For Tom’ featuring Jakob Dylan, Dhani Harrison, Amos Lee, Lukas Nelson, Micah Nelson, and Willie Nelson.

Available Friday, January 24 on all digital platforms, the first slate of releases includes the George Harrison produced Ravi Shankar Chants of India, Ravi Shankar & Ali Akbar Khan In Concert 1972, Joe Strummer & The Mescaleros’ albums Rock Art and The X-Ray StyleGlobal A Go-Go, and Streetcore, and Attitudes – Ain't Love Enough: The Best of the Attitudes. Upcoming releases in 2020 include compilations, live albums, and box sets featuring rare and unreleased recordings from the Dark Horse label – many of which will be made available digitally for the first time ever.

Dhani Harrison, said, “It is with great pleasure and excitement that I can finally announce a new chapter for Dark Horse Records in the music industry alongside our friends at BMG. The label started by my father in 1974 has been a family business my whole life (and is indeed even the reason that my parents met.) From the Indian classical Ragas of Ravi Shankar to the Rock and Roll of ‘Attitudes’ I look forward to reintroducing, to a new audience, all of those artists that my father loved so much. We will also be expanding the Dark Horse family with new artists and classic catalogues in the coming years to include a rich and varied roster of incredible musicians whom we love. Please watch this space! With love, Dhani Harrison.”

Dark Horse Records was founded by George Harrison in 1974 as a place for his solo work and a home for supporting other artists. The label’s eclectic roster features Indian Classical legend Ravi Shankar, the band Attitudes (featuring Jim Keltner, David Foster, Danny Kortchmar, and Paul Stallworth), the duo Splinter (produced by Harrison), R&B vocal group The Stairsteps, American singer Keni Burke, and guitarist Henry McCullough (Paul McCartney and Wings, Joe Cocker and Spooky Tooth).

The HariSongs label was created by the George Harrison Estate to celebrate the Indian classical music George loved and believed would “help as a balance towards a peaceful daily life.” The label was launched in April 2018 in honor of both Ravi Shankar’s birthday (April 7, 1920) and Ali Akbar Khan’s birthday (April 14, 1922).

Vintage Beatles pic

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

"First-played" copy of The Beatles' "Love Me Do" single up for auction

Here's the premiere item from Omega Auctions' Jan. 28 sale of the "Tony Prince Collection."

An incredible piece of music history. This the Radio Luxembourg library copy of 'Love Me Do', this being the very 7" played by Radio Luxembourg DJs during the period. RL is widely acknowledged to be the first of the radio stations to give the Beatles airtime and were crucial in launching the Fab Four on their way to superstardom. The framed display includes a demonstration copy of the record (45-R 4949) with visible A side seemingly in Ex condition (with incorrect McArtney spelling) and with label signed in blue ink by Paul McCartney. Also a 1994 telex sent from MPL to Tony Prince with body to read 'Dear Tony, I'm happy to confirm that i first heard 'Love Me Do' (our first release) on Radio Luxembourg. Did I ever thank you for playing it? if not, I do now. Cheers, All the very best' with signature (facsimile) by Paul McCartney. Frame measures 28 x 18".
"First-played" copy of The Beatles "Love Me Do" single up for auction

Vintage Beatles pic - John and Yoko

Saturday, January 18, 2020

Beatles social media gallery Jan. 18

A roundup of posts from the Beatles and friends this week.

George Harrison
Paul in London, 1973. Photo by Linda McCartney

John and Yoko in Paris

John Lennon skecth: John and Yoko at Eiffel Tower

John and Yoko in Japan

Vintage Beatles news clip: First ever shots of the stars at work, Jan. 18, 1969

Vintage Beatles pic - John

Monday, January 13, 2020

Video: Paul McCartney and Wings perform "With a Little Luck"

Video explores the Beatles' bungalow in Rishikesh, India

From YouTube, a tourist explores the abandoned compound in India where the Beatles studied Transcendental Meditation with the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi in 1968.

The girl who sang with the Beatles: Lizzie Bravo

Lizzie Bravo with John Lennon

Culture Sonar
has a new interview with Lizzie Bravo, one of two fans called upon by the Beatles to sing on "Across the Universe" back in 1968.
There were only a handful of us fans waiting for them to come out that night. It was a Sunday; they didn’t normally record on weekends. The doorman had let us inside the building. Paul came out of the glass doors and asked: “Can any of you girls hold a high note?” I went in and asked to bring my friend Gayleen. You have to realize that we were used to seeing them almost every day, so this particular night was just a much nicer situation since we were inside and not outside the studios. We were just enjoying our time with them (approximately two hours), we were too young to realize what was really going on: we were recording with the biggest rock and roll band that ever was… sharing a microphone with John and Paul (there were two mikes, I was with John first and then we switched).

Vintage Beatles pics - "Hello Goodbye"