Showing posts with label Allan Williams. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Allan Williams. Show all posts

Friday, January 11, 2019

Friday, January 13, 2017

Beatles Bits: Weekly news roundup

Funeral services for early Beatles promoter Allan Williams were held this week in Liverpool. Williams died in December at age 86. There's no report on whether associates such as Pete Best attended the service. Nor were there any public comments or statements from Ringo, Paul or other members of the Beatles camp.

Williams secured the Beatles their first bookings in Hamburg, Germany, which were crucial to their development as a band. He's often billed as the band's first manager.


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Sean Lennon attended the launch of a new line of clothing designs by Stella McCartney in New York this week.

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Liverpool artist Tony Booth, who designed signs for many of the Beatles' early Liverpool-area gigs, died this week at age 83. An exhibition of some of his signs was held in Liverpool last August, and he also designed signs for the 60th anniversary of the Cavern Club, which is being celebrated this weekend.


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Ron Howard's documentary, "Eight Days a Week" Beatles' touring year documentary has been nominated for a BAFTA Award. The film has grossed $12.2 million worldwide.


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Paul McCartney was among celebrities who attended a farewell bash in honor of President Obama last weekend.

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Plug: Readers of the Glass Onion Beatles Journal may enjoy our new sister blog, Pop '67!, which focuses on the pop culture of 50 years ago. Check it out!


Sunday, January 1, 2017

Remembering early Beatles booster Allan Williams

Allan Williams, who booked many early Beatles shows in Liverpool and was responsible for landing their crucial, dues-paying engagements in Hamburg, died this week at age 86.

Allan Kozinn has an obituary in the New York Times here. The Beatles Bible features an excellent biographical entry on Williams here.

Although he billed himself as the Beatles' "first manager," Williams acted more as a booking agent for the group. He handled few of their other affairs.

He felt burned by the Beatles after they stopped paying him a commission for their later Hamburg stints, which the band members insisted they had booked without his help.

When Brian Epstein saw the Beatles and asked Williams about the potential of managing the group, Williams (in)famously cautioned: "Don't touch them with a fucking bargepole; they will let you down."

It was Williams who reportedly tipped off the press when John Lennon beat up Cavern Club emcee Bob Wooler at Paul McCartney's 21st birthday party in June 1963, resulting in a news story that  might have led to a career-ruining scandal for the Beatles, who were on the cusp of national fame at the time.

Williams gave many interviews about his Beatles days over the decades and published his own account, "The Man Who Gave the Beatles Away," in 1977. He also sold the Hamburg live recordings that were released, without the Beatles' permission, as Live! At the Star Club in 1977.

Allan Williams, left, with his wife Beryl, Liverpool business partners Lord Woodbine and Beatles Stu Sutcliffe, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Pete Best - on the way to Hamburg.

Friday, May 13, 2016

Beatles Bits: Weekly news update

Beatle kids: Sean Lennon posted a nice pic of himself with Stella McCartney on his Facebook page this week, likely taken during their attendance at the George Martin memorial service in London. Mary McCartney took the photo. Paul McCartney and, reportedly, Yoko Ono, were also in attendance.


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Allan Williams, who played a vital role in booking the Beatles' early shows, including their first engagement in Hamburg, Germany, has been named a Liverpool Citizen of Honor.
“Of course I remember those days, there was a lot of fun and excitement in the swinging sixties,” he said.
“But we didn’t know we were creating history, that we were creating world history and the Beatles would become world famous. That is still a complete shock to me.
“The fact the group is still at the top doesn’t surprise me, having known them for that long. They deserve it and I can’t see anything topping them.
“Was I miffed at Brian Epstein coming in as their manager? No,  not really.  I was proud if anything. I more or less did all the ground work for them.
“When Brian Epstein took over he didn’t discover them. They were going for years before he took over. So I am really responsible for the most important years, their formative years. 
“I don’t hear from Paul or Ringo, nothing at all. I don’t even know where they live.”
Williams with former Beatles Fan Club Secretary Freda Kelly
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A second weekend of shows has been added to the Desert Trip super festival at the Coachella site in Indio, Calif., this October.

The lineup, which includes Paul McCartney, the Rolling Stones, the Who and Neil Young, will perform on Oct. 7-9 and again Oct. 14-16.

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Paul McCartney visited the Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts earlier this week, causing a stir among the school's students on social media.

The performing arts school was founded and funded by Paul at the site of his former high school, the Liverpool Institute, which was also attended by George Harrison.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Early Beatles hangout to re-open

The Jacaranda, the coffee bar owned by first Beatles "manager" Allan Williams, is finally opening its doors again, the Liverpool Echo reports.

The early Beatles spent many hours hanging out at the Jac and played some of their first performances there.
Speaking earlier in the year, Jacaranda managing director Graham Stanley said: "The features that made the Jac an iconic watering hole was something we couldn’t allow to be lost.

"The booths are an integral part of maintaining the atmosphere that was originally created over 50 years ago. There’s something special about the two booths in the basement as anyone who’s ever spent a night in the Jac has at some point ended up in one."