Tuesday, March 2, 2021

Vintage Beatles pic: George


Farewell, Chris Barber - jazz artist who recorded Paul McCartney's "Catcall"

British trad jazz trombonist Chris Barber died today at age 90, London Jazz News reports.

Barber was one of the most influential musicians on the British trad jazz scene in the 1950s and early 1960s, but is likely most familiar to Beatles fans because he recorded a version of Paul McCartney's instrumental "Cat Call" in 1967. The Beatles, themselves, played the tune early in their career, too.

Here are some vintage clippings about Barber's recording of the tune, followed by the tune itself. You can hear Paul, Jane Asher and others adding some vocal sounds.

Following that, is an early Beatles recording of the tune.

Watch: Beatles Live At The Circus Krone-Bau, Munich, Germany

Vintage Beatles pic: John and Yoko press photo, 1968


Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Vintage Beatles "A Hard Day's Night" lobby card


Paul McCartney to publish "Lyrics" books - updated with preview video

Paul has announced the Nov. 2 release a two-book collection titled "Lyrics 1956 to Present." The set is available for pre-order now from Amazon for $100.


‘More often than I can count, I’ve been asked if I would write an autobiography, but the time has never been right. The one thing I’ve always managed to do, whether at home or on the road, is to write new songs. I know that some people, when they get to a certain age, like to go to a diary to recall day-to-day events from the past, but I have no such notebooks. What I do have are my songs, hundreds of them, which I’ve learned serve much the same purpose. And these songs span my entire life’ Paul McCartney, The Lyrics

In this extraordinary book, with unparalleled candour, Paul McCartney recounts his life and art through the prism of 154 songs from all stages of his career – from his earliest boyhood compositions through the legendary decade of The Beatles, to Wings and his solo albums to the present. Arranged alphabetically to provide a kaleidoscopic rather than chronological account, it establishes definitive texts of the songs’ lyrics for the first time and describes the circumstances in which they were written, the people and places that inspired them, and what he thinks of them now. Presented with this is a treasure trove of material from McCartney’s personal archive – drafts, letters, photographs – never seen before, which make this also a unique visual record of one of the greatest songwriters of all time. 

We learn intimately about the man, the creative process, the working out of melodies, the moments of inspiration. The voice and personality of Paul McCartney sings off every page. There has never been a book about a great musician like it.

‘I hope that what I’ve written will show people something about my songs and my life which they haven’t seen before. I’ve tried to say something about how the music happens and what it means to me and I hope what it may mean to others too’ - Paul McCartney

‘Based on conversations I had with Paul McCartney over a five year period, these commentaries are as close to an autobiography as we may ever come. His insights into his own artistic process confirm a notion at which we had but guessed — that Paul McCartney is a major literary figure who draws upon, and extends, the long tradition of poetry in English’ - Paul Muldoon  

Each volume is 480 pages; not available separately.


The book's listing at Amazon UK features different box art:

Vintage Beatles pic: Ringo as Frank Zappa

Sunday, February 21, 2021

New Beatlefan mag!

Order a copy here.

Beatlefan #248 goes over to the flip side, sharing some fans’ favorite solo Beatle B-sides! Also in the new issue, Al Sussman looks back 25 years at the release of "The Beatles Anthology,” Bruce Spizer recounts the making of the “John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band” album, and Kathy Urbanic examines The Beatles’ enduring appeal. And, Rip Rense makes the case for giving Lennon’s “Grow Old With Me” a proper production, David Persails recounts the legend of the Fabs and Jelly Babies, and John Firehammer looks back on the Beatle year that was 2020. Plus, of course, we have the latest news (including an exclusive preview of Ringo’s upcoming “Zoom In” EP), and reviews of new recordings, books and U.K. media offerings.

Watch: BBC footage of the Beatles at the Hollywood Bowl, 1964

Vintage Beatles pic

Thursday, February 18, 2021

What do you hear? Photos of John and Yoko listening to the ground surface for auction

A series of photos, some familiar, others not, of John and Yoko "listening" to the pavement in New York City via stethoscopes, is up for bid, the Daily Mail reports. The shots were taken in 19971 by Iain MacMillan, who also shot the cover photo for the Beatles' Abbey Road LP.

A contact sheet featuring 12 photos will be sold via Bonhams of London at a starting price of  £9,000 on Feb. 25.

Vintage Wings promo pics

Denny, not Jimmy, with Paul in that first pic.