Tuesday, 31 March 2015

The Beatles at the Beeb rebroadcast

BBC Top Of The Pops 1966
The BBC has again made available their 1982 original broadcasts of the "Beatles at the Beeb" radio series. Link. Andy Peebles tells the story of the many live session recordings the Beatles made for BBC radio. The 2 episodes are also available in the BBC iPlayer, and will remain available for 25 more days.

Auction tomorrow

The real deal?
Tomorrow, April 1st is auction day for various materials relating to the recording of the Beatles in concert at the Star Club, Hamburg from December 1962, including the so called "original unedited mono Master 7-inch safety reels", which we will refer to as the "raw tapes". These tapes could be the stuff Beatles fans and collectors are most looking forward to, because all releases of the concerts have been from edited, truncated, jumbled up and processed so called "master tapes", which everyone agrees has done the tracks more harm than good.
With the "raw tapes" in one's possession, one could establish the correct order of the songs, and it might also reveal more stage banter and perhaps incomplete songs left out of the releases from 1977 and throughout the eighties.
The tapes are likely to be a direct transfer of the material from the four track original, damaged 1962 tape used to record the band on the scene, as rescued by Ted Taylor and Allan Williams in 1973. But until we get a chance to hear the tapes in full, we won't know. Samples from the tapes have been posted on the auction site, and the quality and sonic ambience is said to be similar to the snippets from these concerts as used in the "Living In The Material World" documentary film - and different to the sonic ambience of previous album releases of this material.

Previously a legal release, until the Beatles won a court case in 1990.
Meanwhile, the Misterclaudel bootleg from these same concerts, said to be from the "raw tape" has proved to be no such thing, it is sourced from the same processed versions that can be found on other releases. Indeed, they even included the tracks from a genuine release of Johnny and the Hurricanes' Live at the Star Club Vol II album, which the bootlegger wrongly identified as being Kingsize Taylor and the Dominoes.

Link to the auction

Meanwhile, another interesting, earlier tape has been found, which is the song "Some Other Guy" recorded at the Cavern Club in Liverpool September 5th, 1962. The tape is to go under the hammer on November 4th, 2015 from Adam Partridge Auctioneers in Liverpool. The contents of the tape is well known from needledrops of acetates featuring this version of the song, but sourced from a tape, the quality is bound to be better than previously heard incarnations of the recording.

Monday, 30 March 2015

Setlist from Jan 17, 1963

Memorabilia specialists Tracks has an interesting item for sale, one which gives us a glimpse of what a Beatles concert, two and a half weeks after they had been recorded playing at the Star Club in Hamburg would have been like. A fan has jotted down the titles of the songs the band played at a gig at the Majestic in Birkenhead. The lead singer is also identified, but unfortunately not on the songs the fan was not familiar with. It seems to me that the set list looks like it's a young girl's handwriting. It also looks too neat to have been jotted down at the gig, she probably scribbled down just some abbreviations and later wrote it down properly, probably at home.

The songs are:
  1. Unknown (I Saw Her Standing There - Paul?)
  2. Shimmy Like Kate - John
  3. Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On - George
  4. P.S. I Love You - Paul
  5. H (unknown) (Honey Don't - John?)
  6. Chains - George
  7. A Taste of Honey - Paul
  8. Please Please Me - no lead vocalist indicated, but it's John's song
  9. Three Cool Cats - George
  10. Unknown (Till There Was You - Paul?)
  11. Anna (Go to Him) - John
  12. Hey, Good Lookin' - George
  13. Hippy Hippy Shake - Paul
  14. Talking 'bout You - John
  15. Devil in her Heart - George
  16. Some Other Guy - John
  17. Ask Me Why - John
  18. Roll Over Beethoven - George
  19. Love Me Do - no lead vocalist indicated, but it's John's song.
This was their second performance that day, as they had also played at the Cavern Club in Liverpool earlier in the day. The "Please Please Me"/"Ask Me Why" single was released just the week before the gig. It's good to have confirmation that George was the lead singer on "Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On" as well as "Hey, Good Lookin'", George singing around a third of the songs still. The three main singers seem to be alternating at the vocal microphone, The Paul-John-George pattern repeats throughout, except for "Some Other Guy", which John and Paul used to sing in unison anyway. Any guess what the three missing songs might have been? Too early for Ringo to have a "Ringo Starr Time" perhaps? The set list is for sale at £150.00 from Tracks.

Probably the first Beatles single in the world with a picture sleeve,
this is the Danish/Norwegian cover of the Please Please Me single.

Friday, 27 March 2015

Star Club raw tape preview

Sounds quite nice to these ears! Your mileage may vary.
A preview of samples from the "raw tape" version of The Beatles Live at the Star Club, Hamburg, 1962 was posted on YouTube yesterday. This is an auction preview, since the tape is due up for auction by Ted Owen & Co on April 1st. The audio sample is also available at the Ted Owen website. The website says: "Headling is the historic Beatles 1962 Hamburg Star-Club original master recording tapes, containing the complete collection of masters and stereo album mixes that became the top selling 'Gold' awarded LP 'Live At The Star Club'."
Beatles historians have no use for the fake stereo masters made in 1977, of course, but the full lot is described thusly:

  • The Original unedited mono Master 7" safety reels.
  • The Original First Generation Master(s) for the double album LP.
  • A set of two 10½ reels USA version 15 ips DBX sides (C&D), (A&B).
  • The Original Studio Masters used for the matrix and subsequently the pressing of the Hamburg, Star-Club double album.
  • The complete DBX work reels, both edited and unedited consisting of 1 x 10½ reel 15 ips 2 TR (mono) DBX edited, 1 x 10½ reel 15 ips Mono DBX master, 1 x 10½ reel 15 ips Mono DBX safety and 1 x ½ reel ¼ tr. Unedited mono work reels (1&4), (2&3) and All in plain white / black ink marked cartons.

  • I'd say the real deal here is item #1: The original unedited mono Master 7" safety reels. The bidding starts at £40,000 and the estimated sales price is £100,000 – £150,000.

    Link to the auction.

    Meanwhile, bootlegger Misterclaudel have just released what they claim is a CD version of the raw, unedited tape. Misterclaudel's press release in Japan says it is the 1973 raw tape (made from transferring the contents of the damaged 1962 reel tape to a new reel tape, or several new reel tapes). We are awaiting the release to reach us.

    Wednesday, 25 March 2015

    On the cover of Rolling Stone...

    Returning to the cover of Rolling Stone

    Ringo Starr returns to the Rolling Stone cover solo for the first time since 1981 this week, musing on everything from a hypothetical Beatles reunion to why he decided to get clean in 1988. Film and teaser here: Rolling Stone Magazine. They also give you a guided tour through Ringo's solo career, courtesy of videos they found on YouTube.

    Ringo will also be talking about his new album, "Postcards from Paradise" on "the Ellen DeGeneres show" on 31. March as well as on "Conan" April 1 (true). Uncut Magazine is looking for questions to ask Ringo for an upcoming feature, submit your question(s) through this page.

    Tuesday, 24 March 2015

    Fourfiveseconds out on CD-single

    The CD-single
    Singles are difficult to find in a physical format these days, normally they are just available as downloads. However, the recent FourFiveSeconds single with Rihanna, Paul McCartney and Kanye West available has been made available as a CD-single from German Amazon. So if you're avoiding those downloads still, you can now add the song to your collection.
    The release may be because Germany is either very hesitant to, or awaiting the collapse of the digital revolution. I just came back from a Beatles themed cruise from Oslo to the German city of Kiel, and was surprised when I had to withdraw cash in order to shop, because accepting credit or debit cards was not commonplace, even in high street shops in Germany. And when we stopped to have breakfast at a diner, they didn't accept Visa, only Mastercard. So the future may take Visa, but the present is still not there.

    Friday, 20 March 2015

    Ringo's Photograph book - cheap edition

    New edition of Ringo's book, "Photograph".
    In PHOTOGRAPH, Ringo Starr reveals never-before-seen photographs and mementos from his archives, sharing memories of his childhood, The Beatles and beyond. Ringo’s lens captures his Beatles bandmates in pensive and playful moments, portraying them from the point of view of an insider, friend and skilled photographer.

    In an original manuscript of over 15,000 words, join Ringo growing up amidst the excitement of the emerging Merseybeat scene, as he remembers his first car, drum-kits, girls and bands on his ‘road of happy drumming’. From Pwllheli to Delhi, obscurity to superstardom, his travels are recounted with honesty and hilarity.

    “I love pictures put together, showing different times of your life, “Ringo said about the book, “At the time, I never thought that there would be a whole book of my photographs.”

    The limited edition from Genesis Publications.

    PHOTOGRAPH was originally conceived as a limited edition book of only 2,500 copies, which sold out within weeks. A short edition is also available as an e-book from iTunes.

    Two years later, Ringo Starr and Genesis Publications announce the 'Open Edition' - a more accessible and affordable printing of his book to be released in bookstores this September 2015. The author is donating all royalties to the Lotus Foundation.

    The book is available for preordering from Amazon.

    Thursday, 19 March 2015

    The Beatles: Alpha Omega

    The Beatles: Alpha Omega 4 disc boxed set
    In January 1973, two pirated Beatles box sets appeared in the United States, Alpha Omega Volumes I & II: The Story Of The Beatles.

    These four-LP collections were advertised on TV and radio stations in the Midwest and were sold by mail order. Instead of taking legal action, Capitol Records countered by putting out two official Beatles anthologies, The Beatles 1962-1966 (the red album) and The Beatles 1967-1970 (the blue album).

    However, in March, a $15 million lawsuit was filed by manager Allen Klein on behalf of George Harrison, along with Capitol and Apple Records, against the manufacturers and distributors of the pirate package, and against American Broadcasting Companies, Inc., who had been advertising it.

    Unlike the official release, the Alpha Omega sets was not ordered chronologically but somewhat alphabeticaly, and with a few solo songs thrown in to boot.

    The boxed set lying face down

    Alpha Omega Volume I:

    Side 1:
    1. Act Naturally
    2. All I've Got To Do
    3. All My Loving
    4. And I Love Her
    5. Baby's In Black
    6. Yesterday
    7. Ballad Of John And Yoko
    8. Bangladesh
    Side 2:
    1. Can't Buy Me Love
    2. Come Together
    3. Day Tripper
    4. Do You Want To Know A Secret
    5. Eight Days A Week
    6. Eleanor Rigby
    7. Uncle Albert
    Side 3
    1. I Should Have Known Better
    2. It Won't Be Long
    3. I Want To Hold Your Hand
    4. Lady Madonna
    5. Ticket To Ride
    6. Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds
    7. Michelle
    8. Mr. Moonlight
    Side 4:
    1. I Feel Fine
    2. If I Fell
    3. I'll Be Back
    4. Hey Jude
    5. I'm A Loser
    6. I'm Happy Just To Dance With You
    7. I Saw Her Standing There

    Alpha Omega Volume II:

    Side 1:
    1. Nowhere Man
    2. Obladi Oblada
    3. Paperback Writer
    4. Penny Lane
    5. Help!
    6. Roll Over Beethoven
    7. Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band
    Side 2:
    1. Get Back
    2. Hello Goodbye
    3. Revolution #1
    4. Here Comes The Sun
    5. I'll Follow The Sun
    6. Imagine
    7. Honey Don't
    Side 3:
    1. We Can Work It Out
    2. With A Little Help From My Friends
    3. Yellow Submarine
    4. Baby You're A Rich Man
    5. You Can't Do That
    6. You've Got To Hide Your Love Away
    7. Maybe I'm Amazed
    8. A Hard Day's Night
    Side 4:
    1. She Loves You
    2. Something
    3. Strawberry Fields Forever
    4. Tell Me Why
    5. The Long And Winding Road
    6. Let It Be
    7. Everybody's Trying To Be My Baby
    Feel free to try it out as a playlist! Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band fades out just before the "Billy Shears" introduction on With A Little Help From My Friends, which was not included. All tracks were taken from American stereo LPs, so no single versions appear, and those not yet in true stereo in the U.S. were issued in Duophonic.

    Someone also pressed up copies of this release on CDs, taken from vinyl drops of the LPs.

    You can find out more about this release (which was also out on 8-track) on the About The Beatles site. And check out a YouTube video.

    NME: Beatles issue

    NME Beatles Special

    NME is out with a bumper issue with a theme: 100 Greatest Beatles Songs As Chosen By Music's A-Listers.

    Read the countdown from 100 to 51 online.

    Wednesday, 18 March 2015

    Beatles monument in Austria - and an unknown concert

    Before the unveiling
    March 14, 2015, a Beatles monument was unveiled in front of the Edelweiss hotel in Obertauern, Austria. The monument was commissioned to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Beatles filming scenes for their 1965 movie "Help!" at the ski resort in the Austrian alps.

    The Beatles monument
    A couple of installations were also displayed around the village.

    Installation 1.

    Installation 2.

    The monument and installations were erected during the "Beatle Week" in Obertauern, which is still happening.

    The Unknown Beatles Concert

    Herbert Lurzer was Paul McCartneys ski teacher and stunt double in the film. He was just a local lad at the time with no real idea who his famous pupil was.

    “ I had never heard of them before, it was incredible to be suddenly involved in the inner circle of madness for those weeks. I was teaching Paul to ski and playing his parts in the movie, it was an amazing time”

    “I remember Paul falling the first time and shouting me to pick him up. I refused, I said you have to learn to fall before you ski, then you have to learn to get up! I don’t think he was used to people talking to him like that anymore. I remember we were on the top of a mountain and he forgot his cigarettes so he just clicked his finger for somebody to get them! Remember at this time they were so famous and so young, they were not used to it yet and everything was available to them instantly”

    John gets a helping hand after a fall. Photo: © Christian Skrein (Salzburg Museum)

    “Because we hadn’t really heard the songs before, they played all the ski teachers a concert.”

    As it turns out, this is the only gig they ever played in Austria, and there was only a handful of people there!

    “It was amazing, and they asked us - do you like this song, do you like that song? Imagine! Them asking me!”

    "We hung out with them, drinking and smoking as they were always waiting around for something to happen, they were our friends for two weeks and they asked a lot of questions about Austria and about us, they were such great guys.”

    Herbert now owns the hotel the Beatles had stayed in during the time they spent there. The Beatles stayed at the Edelweiss hotel in rooms 502, 504, 506 and 507, and these rooms, now modernised, are available to book. The rest of the film crew stayed at the Marietta hotel.

    Another concert happened when John and Paul joined Hamburg mate Jacky during their stay in Austria, but we already blogged about that here.

    The year after, Paul returned to Austria with his girlfriend Jane Asher for a holiday, as he wanted to learn to ski properly.

    Source for Beatles monument
    Source for Herbert Lurzer's story
    Source for Beatles installation

    Ringo Starr October dates

    Just as we thought, it was just announced that Ringo and his All Starr Band will undertake another tour this autumn. Again, USA and Canada are the countries he will visit. Ringo will be on stage in Vancouver on the 75th anniversary of John Lennon's birthday. However, Ringo will first turn 75 himself on July 7, and Paul McCartney has a concert in Norway that day, so he will not be able to attend. Busy days for the surviving Beatles. Here are the October dates of Ringo Starr and his All Starr Band.

    Oct 1 The Masonic, San Francisco, CA
    Oct 2 Vina Robles Ampitheater, Paso Robles, CA
    Oct 3 Field of Dreams, Sonoma, CA
    Oct 6 Century Link Arena, Boise, ID
    Oct 8 Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre Victoria, BC
    Oct 9 Queen Elizabeth Theatre Vancouver, BC
    Oct 10 South Okanagan Event Ctr, Penticton, BC
    Oct 12 Jubilee Auditorium, Edmonton, AL
    Oct 13 Jubilee Auditorium, Calgary, AL
    Oct 14 Brandt Centre, Regina, SA
    Oct 16 State Theater, Minneapolis, MN
    Oct 17 Riverside Theater, Milwaukee, WI
    Oct 18 Fox Theater, Detroit, MI
    Oct 20 Massey Hall Toronto, ON
    Oct 21 St Denis Theatre Montreal, QU
    Oct 23 Wang Theater, Boston, MA
    Oct 24 Foxwood Theater, Mashantucket, CT
    Oct 25 State Theater, New Brunswick, NJ
    Oct 27 Heinz Hall, Pittsburgh, PA
    Oct 28 Lyric Opera House, Baltimore, MD
    Oct 30 Tower Theater, Philadelphia, PA
    Oct 31 Kings Theater, Brooklyn, NY

    Monday, 16 March 2015

    McCartney's new "Save us" video

    Paul McCartney's new video for the song "Save Us" from the "New" album was just published by Ticketmaster as a "UK exclusive". The video was also available on the collector's edition of "New", so the exclusivity is not very apparant.

    The poster story

    The Norwegian singles collection
    Way back in the dark ages, before graphic design was made so easy by computers, some friends of mine and I hit upon the idea of making a giant poster depicting all the Norwegian Beatles single picture sleeves (more about the Norwegian 45's here).

    The place where I was working at the time had acquired a wonderful piece of equipment - a colour copy machine. The machine was also capable of reducing the size of the copy. So I set about the task. I got me some plain white big cardboard sheets, gathered together all my Norwegian Beatles 45's, borrowed a couple that I didn't have and went ahead and produced it. When I had all the miniature single covers I needed, each one was hand glued to the cardboard poster.

    I think I made in all five of these posters, one for each of us, me and my two friends, one was presented as an extra prize to a TV competition winner of a Beatles quiz at the time, and one for Paul McCartney. The reason why we thought of Paul, was that we had heard that his friend, Elvis Costello, was a collector of Beatles records. We thought that perhaps next time Costello was visiting Paul, McCartney could show off this poster. Also, Paul was due to give two concerts in Norway in the near future (this was in 1993), so we thought that we might get to present it to him on that occasion.

    There were slight variations between each poster, and for Paul we decided to include the two picture sleeves from his solo career that were printed in Norway (the later ones either had standard factory sleeves or were imports). You can see this poster (or rather, a recreation of it) in the photo above.

    We had the poster glazed and framed, and were all set when Paul's tour was heading for Scandinavia. At the time, we were on friendly terms with Paul's publicist, Geoff Baker, so we rang him. Baker was kind enough to be able to get us a couple of photo credits for the first concert, and he was also able to get me in to the pre-concert press conference. One thing he didn't accomplish, was to get us that one on one with Paul, so that we could present him with our poster gift. As Paul was giving two concerts, we also tried to deliver it to him the next day, but unfortunately the daily TV news show wanted to interview him at the time slot we had been given, and there was no time left for us. After travelling to the next venue in Stockholm, Sweden with the same result, we gave up.

    But we still wanted to give Paul our poster, so we decided to dispatch it by mail to MPL in London.
    A couple of months later, the poster came back to me, damaged in the mail. The glass had been shattered and some of the miniature covers were damaged. After a repair job and new glazing, I decided to keep the poster until I could travel to London and deliver it myself.
    The poster included with the "1" vinyl album.
    Photos of these singles were were supplied to Apple by
    German Beatles collector Joachim Noske, who later
    released an 800 page book of Beatles records from
    around the world, called "The Beatles Covered".
    1996 was my next visit to London, and I managed to persuade the flight crew to bring the poster on board.
    Upon arriving in London, my good friend Peter and I went over to the Apple headquarters in Ovington square and rang the bell. By this time, the Anthology promotion was in full operation and Geoff Baker had been employed by Apple to deal with the press, under Derek Taylor. So, instead of delivering the poster to the staff at MPL, we thought we'd go to Apple where we might get to talk with Geoff and remind him of our non-deliverance of the poster back in Norway a few years earlier. However, this didn't happen. Some secretary opened the door and we unceremoniously presented her with the poster, said it was for Paul and asked her to give our best to Baker.

    Then, four years later, Apple/EMI released the hugely successful "1" album by the Beatles (best selling CD of the decade 2000-2010). I purchased the vinyl edition and was awestruck by the giant poster that was included, depicting Beatles single sleeves from around the world.  They even kept a few of the Norwegian ones (circled around in yellow in this photo of the poster)!

    Years later, in 2012 Paul McCartney released a Record Store Day edition of his single, "Another Day"/"Oh Woman Oh Why?". For the front cover, he elected to use the Norwegian edition of the single, as depicted on the poster we had delivered at the Apple office many years earlier.

    Two of the Norwegian single front covers both depicted on our original poster and the "1" poster has since been licenced away by Apple for usage on various memorabilia/souvenir products. The "Something" front cover is a carrier bag, among other things, and the "Can't But Me Love" front cover has been used on items such as coffee mugs, coasters, t-shirts and a die cast model car. It'd be nice if someone who has visited the Apple offices or the MPL building could report about our poster decorating some wall...

    Sunday, 15 March 2015

    Ringo - back on the road

    Recovered: Ringo and his All Starr Band ends their current tour tonight in Las Vegas.
    Ringo and his All Starr Band went through with their concert last night at the Pala Casino in Pala, California. Glad to see that Ringo has recovered from his illness and is back on the road again, after having missed two concerts. The tour ends tonight at the The Pearl at Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas.

    Photos from the Pala Casino concert.

    Saturday, 14 March 2015

    Ringo postpones concerts due to illness

    Ringo sings "Act Naturally" at a recent concert in Alabama. Photo: Rick Glover/Beatlefan
    Ringo Starr and His All Starr Band have cancelled two concerts during their current USA because Ringo has been ill.
    It's the concert that was due to happen on Thursday at the Chumash Casino in Santa Ynez, California and Friday's concert at the Masonic in San Francisco, California that have been cancelled or postponed.

    Tonight's concert at the Pala Casino in Pala, California, as well as Sunday's concert at the The Pearl at Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas have so far not been cancelled or rescheduled.

    The concerts that were planned for Friday has been rescheduled to October 1, the concert at the Chumash Casino has not yet been given a rescheduled date.

    We don't know what kind of illness Ringo is experiencing, but it appears to be something he reckons to recover quickly from, since just one and one concert is being cancelled so far.

    Friday, 13 March 2015

    McCartney: Second night in Amsterdam added

    Another addition to the tour announced.
    Ticket sales in Amsterdam has gone so well, a second night has been added at the venue, on 8 June.

    Updated European tour schedule:
    Saturday May 23rd – The O2, London, Great Britain
    Sunday May 24th – The O2, London, Great Britain
    Wednesday May 27th – Barclaycard Arena, Birmingham, Great Britain
    Thursday May 28th – Echo Arena, Liverpool, Great Britain
    Friday 5th June - Nouveau Stade Velodrome, Marseille, France
    Sunday 7th June – ZiggoDome, Amsterdam, Holland
    Monday 8th June – ZiggoDome, Amsterdam, Holland
    Thursday 11th June - Stade De France, Paris, France
    Saturday 4th July – Roskilde Festival, Denmark
    Tuesday 7th July – Telenor Arena, Oslo, Norway
    Thursday 9th July – Tele2 Arena, Stockholm, Sweden

    The Danish album

    Denmark 1965: The Beatles' Hottest Hits. Parlophone PMCS 306. Photo: Parlogram
    This is the rarest and most collectable Danish Beatles album. Released on the 25th of April, 1965, and according to paperwork in EMI Denmark's archives, pressed in only 3028 copies. This was a pretty normal number to press, as each of the first four Beatles albums sold less than 10 000 copies per title in Denmark from 1963 to 1973. "The Beatles' Hottest Hits" has an interesting collection of songs:

    Side 1:
    1. I Feel Fine
    2. I Call Your Name
    3. I'll Get You
    4. From Me To You
    5. This Boy
    6. She Loves You

    Side 2:
    1. Long Tall Sally
    2. Thank You Girl
    3. Matchbox
    4. She's A Woman
    5. Slow Down
    6. I Want To Hold Your Hand
    You'll notice that this collects on an album the Long Tall Sally EP along with four singles: She Loves You/I'll Get You, From Me To You/Thank You Girl, I Want To Hold Your Hand/This Boy and I Feel Fine/She's A Woman. The album was released in mono only.

    The back cover of the Danish album. Photo: Parlogram.
    There was one mistake on the back cover. In the list of "More hot hits", some of the Beatles' singles are listed, among them "A Hard Day's Night" (R 5160). The B-side to that is wrongly identified as "Waitin' For You".

    The label for side 1 (Denmark). Photo: Parlogram

    Matrix numbers: XSTX 115 I and XSTX 116. In Sweden, the same album with the same catalogue number (and matrix numbers) was released as The Beatles' Greatest Hits on the 31st of March 1965, but sporting a different cover.

    Sweden 1965: The Beatles' Greatest Hits. Parlophone PMCS 306.
    The back cover was different, too:

    The back cover for the Swedish album.
    And of course, the label:
    The label for side 1 (Sweden)
    The Swedish album was probably also pressed in the same limited amount as the Danish album, but is not as collectible, due to the more common front cover, which looks just like the "Something New" album cover. Why the Swedes didn't use a photo of the Beatles in Sweden is beyond me. A number of Swedish EP covers all have beautiful photos of The Beatles taken in Sweden. Even the UK "Long Tall Sally" EP cover photo was taken in Sweden. Furthermore, why choose a design similar to "Something New"? The German pressing of "Something New" was for sale in Swedish record shops at the time, so why try to confuse the record buyers with a similar looking album cover?

    The Danes are likely to have selected the "eskimo" photo, taken backstage at the Hammersmith Odeon during the 1964/5 Beatles Christmas shows, due to the fact that Greenland (where eskimos live) is Danish territory. They could not have chosen a concert photo from The Beatles' only visit to Denmark, because Jimmy Nicol was substituting for Ringo on those two concerts.

    Beware of fakes

    Due to its popularity and rarity, the Danish album has had the dubious honour of having been counterfeited by modern day pirate vinyl pressing plants, usually on coloured vinyl.

    Available in several colours, the counterfeits are quite common.

    The counterfeited back doesn't have the wraparound flaps like the original had.
    Counterfeits on black vinyl can also be found, as well as picture discs. Stereo copies are also found, as are CDs, all are fakes.

    Usually, whenever you find an original, it's not in a great shape. The white sections of the album cover has usually yellowed with age, and the record will have been played to death. When a decent original comes on the market, prices will be around 500-650 GBP. However, due to the scarcity and collectability of this album, even beat up originals command high prices. Unless you're lucky and the dealer doesn't know what he has. A Swedish "Greatest Hits" will be priced at around 100-150 GBP.

    Thursday, 12 March 2015

    Star club boot claims to be raw tape

    The Beatles at the Star Club, Hamburg 1962.
    The notorious Japanese bootleg company Misterclaudel has released information about yet another revamp of the historic 1962 tapes featuring recordings of concerts by The Beatles and other groups at Hamburg's Star Club from late December that year. They claim that these particular recordings are from the raw, unprocessed tape - and that will be a first if it's true.
    It's a 5 disc extravaganza featuring not only The Beatles, but also recordings by Kingsize Taylor and the Dominos, the Rebel Rousers and Tony Sheridan. This is the most comprehensive outing of these recordings to date, we believe.
    Largely ignored by the public, fans of the Beatles are very fond of this historical document, and once one learns to live with the mediocre quality of the recordings, the concerts can be enjoyed for what they are, a glimpse of what the Beatles sounded like in Hamburg, taped just a few months before they became a household name.

    Rare colour photo from inside the Star Club (not the Beatles on stage)

    LIVE AT THE STAR CLUB RAW TAPES - Misterclaudel MCCD470-474 (5CD)

    RELEASE Date :25th March


    DECEMBER 21, 1962

    1st SHOW "1973 TAPE" reel #1
    01. Be-Bop-A-Lula
    02. I Saw Her Standing There
    03. Hallelujah I Love Her So
    04. Red Hot

    2nd SHOW "1973 TAPE" reel #2
    05. Adrian Barber Voice Memo
    06. Shelia
    07. Kansas City - Hey Hey Hey Hey
    08. Shimmy Like Kate
    09. Reminiscing
    10. Red Sails In The Sunset
    11. Sweet Little Sixteen
    12. Roll Over Beethoven
    13. A Taste Of Honey

    14. Money with TONY SHERIDAN
    15. Sparking Brown Eyes
    16. Lovesick Blues
    17. First Taste Of Love
    18. Dizzy Miss Lizzy
    19. Do You Believe
    20. Ooh Pooh Pah Doo
    21. Twist And Shout
    22. Cannonball with BETTINA DERLIEN


    DECEMBER 25, 1962

    "1973 TAPE" reel #3
    01. Nothin' Shakin'
    02. I Saw Her Standing There
    03. To Know Her Is To Love Her
    04. Everybody's Trying To Be My Baby
    05. Till There Was You
    06. Where Have You Been All My Life?
    07. Lend Me Your Comb
    08. Your Feet's Too Big
    09. Talking About You
    10. A Taste Of Honey
    11. Matchbox
    12. Little Queenie

    DECEMBER 28, 1962

    1st SHOW "1973 TAPE" reel #3

    13. Twist And Shout
    14. Mr.Moonlight
    15. Besame Mucho
    16. Talking About You
    17. Falling Love Again
    18. Long Tall Sally

    2nd SHOW "1973 TAPE" reel #3

    19. I Remember You
    20. tuning
    21. Roll Over Beethoven
    22. I'm Gonna Sit Right Down And Cry Over You

    23. Hully Gully
    24. I Take What I Want


    DECEMBER 31, 1962

    "1973 TAPE" reel #4

    01. tuning
    02. Road Runner
    03. Hippy Hippy Shake
    04. A Taste Of Honey
    05. ‘ It’s five to twelve ‘
    06. ’ Ein Zulage ‘
    07. Ask Me Why
    08. ‘ Goodnight ’

    09. Horst Fascher Announcement
    10. You Can't Sit Down
    11. Roll Over Beethoven
    12. Black & Blue
    13. Do You Love Me
    14. Let's Twist Again
    15. Red River Rock
    16. Mashed Potatoes
    17. Forty Days
    18. Ja-Da
    19. The Sheik of Araby
    20. Buckeye
    21. La Bamba
    22. Early in the Morning
    23. The Twist
    24. The Kid
    25. The Paris Jam



    01. I Saw Her Standing There

    02. Red Hot

    03. Kansas City
    04. Shimmy Like Kate
    05. Roll Over Beethoven
    06. Fallin’ In Love Again

    07. Red Hot - Shimmy Like Kate - Red Sails In The Sunset

    1995 ANTHOLOGY
    08. Red Hot - Shimmy Like Kate - Red Sails In The Sunset

    09. ‘ Lost Tapes ’
    10. A Taste Of Honey
    11. Hippy Hippy Shake - A Taste Of Honey - I Saw Her Standing There - Lovesick Blues

    12. Till There Was You
    13. Where Have You Been All My Life?

    14. Red Hot #1
    15. Red Hot #2
    16. A Taste Of Honey

    17. A Taste Of Honey
    18. Till There Was You
    19. Where Have You Been All Of My Life?
    20. Lend Me Your Comb
    21. Your Feet's Too Big
    22. I'm Talking About You
    23. To Know Her Is To Love Her
    24. Everybody's Trying To Be My Baby
    25. Matchbox
    26. Little Queenie
    27. Nothin' Shakin'
    28. Roll Over Beethoven


    RARE LIVE! ‘62 Complete Version
    01. Introduction
    02. I'm Gonna Sit Right Down And Cry Over You
    03. I Saw Her Standing There
    04. Roll Over Beethoven
    05. Hippy Hippy Shake
    06. Sweet Little Sixteen
    07. Lend Me Your Comb
    08. Your Feet's Too Big
    09. Twist And Shout
    10. Mr. Moonlight
    11. A Taste Of Honey
    12. Besame Mucho
    13. Reminiscing
    14. Kansas City - Hey Hey Hey Hey
    15. Where Have You Been All My Life?
    16. Hully Gully REBEL ROUSERS
    17. Till There Was You
    18. Nothin' Shakin'
    19. To Know Her Is To Love Her
    20. Little Queenie
    21. Falling In Love Again
    22. Ask Me Why
    23. Be-Bop-A-Lula
    24. Hallelujah I Love Her So
    25. Sheila
    26. Red Sails In The Sunset
    27. Everybody's Trying To Be My Baby
    28. Matchbox
    29. I'm Talking About You
    30. Shimmy Like Kate
    31. Long Tall Sally
    32. I Remember You

    Meanwhile, the tapes and tape recorders that went unsold on Heritage Auctions last December is due for another auction from Ted Owen & Co. Here are the descriptions:

    The year was 1962, the place Hamburg, Germany. Ted “Kingsize” Taylor and the Dominoes were in town for a three-night stand at the Star-Club. Taylor had asked for a recording of the gig, and someone at the club obliged with a simple one-microphone setup plugged into a mono tape recorder (offered above). The machine ran continuously, capturing Taylor’s performances and those of two lesser-known acts also on the bill: Cliff Bennett and the Rebel Rousers and an up-and-coming quartet from Liverpool that called itself the Beatles. The complete set of original un-edited mono Master recording tapes and the subsequesnt re-mixed and remastered tapes that became Beatles live at the star club lp Comprising- The Original unedited mono Master 7” safety reels. The Original First Generation Master(s) for the double album LP A set of two 10 ½” reels USA version 15 ips DBX sides (C&D), (A&B) The Original Studio Masters used for the matrix and subsequently the pressing of the Hamburg, Star-Club double album. The complete DBX work reels, both edited and unedited consisting of 1 x 10 ½” reel 15 ips 2 TR (mono) DBX edited, 1 x 10 ½” reel 15 ips Mono DBX master, 1 x 10 ½” reel 15 ips Mono DBX safety and 1 x ½ ” reel ¼ tr. Unedited mono work reels (1&4), (2&3) and All in plain white / black ink marked cartons. The Master tapes are being sold with a written hard backed history of the origin and ownership title of the tapes comprising the history of the original release and the intervention of Apple and the offers made to Yoko Ono. Described as the crossroads of the Beatles rise to fame. The tapes provides a crucial glimpse into the Beatles’ development. In a very short time, they would play to massive audiences, and would rely much less on the early rock and R&B covers that dominated their earlier set lists. Lennon and Harrison would later assert that their best days as a live band were in their Liverpool and Hamburg days, and these recordings document that time period, flaws and all. Note for further details please contact Ted Owen & Co 
    Estimate: 100,000 GBP - 150,000 GBP 

    Beatles - Portable Reel To Reel Tape Recorder Used At The Star-Club, Hamburg With a Tape Recording of The Beatles. This vintage Phillips portable tape recorder is of great importance to the history of the Beatles, for it is the machine on which the album Live! At The Star-Club, Hamburg, Germany; 1962 was originally recorded. The four-track recorder was purchased in Berlin in October 1962 by Ted "Kingsize" Taylor, the leader of the Liverpool group Kingsize Taylor and the Dominoes. The Dominoes shared a Star-Club residency with the Beatles in December 1962, during the last of the Beatles' extended trips to Hamburg. Taylor had suspended a microphone from the ceiling of the club which ran to the Phillips recorder, and had taken to recording his group - and then others - at the venue. According to Taylor, he approached John Lennon one evening and asked if he had any objections to Taylor recording a Beatles performance. John's reply was that it was fine "so long as you get the ale in"- which Taylor did, and he also rolled the tape. Taylor, left the tape at his mother's home upon his return to Liverpool, and didn't address the recording again until 1965 when he presented an edited version to Brian Epstein to gauge his interest for possible release. Epstein purportedly replied that due to the substandard quality of the recording there would be no commercial interest, with a purchase offer to Taylor of 20 pounds for the tape Offered in this lot are two portable recorders owned by Kingsize Taylor: one, the Phillips recorder purchased in Germany and used to record the Beatles at the Star-Club, and two, a Grundig recorder subsequently purchased in Great Britain, and used by Taylor to create the edited tape presented to Brian Epstein. The Grundig recorder does include a microphone, however, it is not the mic that was used to record the Beatles at the Star-Club. A copy of the edited tape as presented to Epstein is also included. This tape is not the master used for the Lingasong release, and no copyright is conferred with its purchase. A two-record vinyl copy of the Lingasong release is included for listening enjoyment. 

    Estimate: 25,000 GBP - 35,000 GBP 

    The Star Club operated from 1962 through 1969 and the building it occupied was destroyed by a fire in 1987.  Through the sixties, the club was a popular rock'n'roll club in Hamburg, and was visited by many of the stars from the rock'n'roll era:  The Beatles, Chicken Shack (featuring Christine McVie (Perfect)), Cliff Bennett and the Rebel Rousers, Cream, Lee Curtis and the All-Stars, Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick & Tich, Earth (pre-Black Sabbath), The Graduates, The Jimi Hendrix Experience (US/UK, March 1967), The Jaybirds (featuring Alvin Lee of Ten Years After), Billy J. Kramer and The Dakotas, The Liverbirds, The Overlanders, The Pretty Things, The Remo Four, The Searchers, Kingsize Taylor and The Dominoes; Richard Thompson, Soft Machine, and Tony Vincent and The Giants, Jane Cane, The Roadrunners, Katch 22, Ray Charles, Bo Diddley, Fats Domino, Everly Brothers, Bill Haley, Jimi Hendrix, Johnny and the Hurricanes, Brenda Lee, Jerry Lee Lewis (who released a highly praised live album recorded at the club in 1964) and Little Richard, who at that point had Billy Preston in his band. 
    In an article recently, Rolling Stone magazine made the mistake of identifying the venue as a strip club, something it was definitely not, but it was situated in a street where those kinds of clubs could also be found.

    Wednesday, 11 March 2015

    RSD 2015: The Family Way on vinyl

    "The Family Way" soundtrack album from 1967 is due out on vinyl for Record Store Day 2015
    There wasn't much in the way of Beatles related releases for Record Store Day 2015, but this one warrants attention.

    Paul McCartney
    The Family Way: Original Soundtrack Recording
    Format: 12" Vinyl
    Label: Varese Sarabande
    Release type: RSD Exclusive Release
    Info by RSD: This 1967 soundtrack composed by Paul McCartney is one of the most elusive Beatles souvenirs. The original vinyl album has been long out of print, and it is commanding sky-high prices on the collector's circuit.

    The Family Way is a 1966 British comedy-drama film based on Bill Naughton's play All in Good Time (1963). It began life in 1961 as a television play, Honeymoon Postponed.The film was produced and directed by John and Roy Boulting, respectively, and starred father and daughter John Mills and Hayley Mills.

    The soundtrack was composed by Paul McCartney and released on an album in January 1967, effectively the first solo-Beatles outing, musicwise. The album was credited to "The George Martin Orchestra" and issued under the full title The Family Way (Original Soundtrack Album). A 45rpm single, again credited to the George Martin Orchestra, was issued on 23 December 1966, comprising "Love in the Open Air" backed with "Theme From 'The Family Way'", as United Artists UP1165. The Family Way won an Ivor Novello Award in 1967 and was last seen on CD in 2011, remastered from the original first generation stereo master tapes. Varese Sarabande was the company behind the release then, as they are now, only on vinyl. The CD included the unreleased stereo mix of "A Theme From The Family Way" as a bonus track, which had appeared originally as the B-side of the 1966 UK/US 7-inch single by the Tudor Minstrels. It is not known if this track will be included on the vinyl edition, or if it will merely mimic the original album release.

    The recording took place over November and December 1966, before the Beatles began work on their album Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. McCartney's involvement in the project was minimal, according to biographer Howard Sounes, who quotes George Martin's recollection that he had to "pester Paul for the briefest scrap of a tune" with which to start writing the score. After McCartney had provided "a sweet little fragment of a waltz tune", Martin continued, "I was able to complete the score."

    Despite the RSD blurb about the rarity of the vinyl album, it's easily found on ebay, prices range from £3.72 (auction) to £85.12 (Buy it now). When we first came to London on an interrail trip back in 1982, "The Family Way" album, Australian edition was readily available at the HMV shop in Oxford Street.

    Record Store Day is April 18, 2015.

    Tuesday, 10 March 2015

    The Beatles: Filming Help!

    In the swimmingpool
    CBS Local: A new photo gallery of photos of the Beatles filming Help! was just published. We don't know if this has something to do with the upcoming "Eight Arms To Hold You" book, but they are nice, candid shots, quite a few of them from the scene where the fabs emerge in a swimmingpool after having escaped the thugs near the beach. It's 23 photos in all.
    Take a look at the gallery

    Another image appeared on an Austrian site recently, showing the Beatles' body doubles in the film:

    Not quite the Beatles
    The image illustrated the upcoming TV documentary of the Beatles filming "Help!" in Austria. "Help! - 50 Jahre Beatles in Obertauern" will be televised on Friday 13 March on Servus TV, and is likely to be available on their web TV player.

    Another "Help!" photo gallery comprising 12 images can be found at msn.com, and those are published in conjunction with the book.

    The upcoming "Eight Arms To Hold You" book.

    Book website

    Monday, 9 March 2015

    McCartney adds 2nd show in London

    May 24 added to Europe tour
    A second date has been added to Paul McCartney's European leg of the "Out There" 2015 tour. It's in London's O2, and it's the day after the regular concert there. Tickets are already on sale from Ticketmaster.

    Updated Europe tour schedule:

    Saturday May 23rd – The O2, London, Great Britain
    Sunday May 24th – The O2, London, Great Britain
    Wednesday May 27th – Barclaycard Arena, Birmingham, Great Britain
    Thursday May 28th – Echo Arena, Liverpool, Great Britain
    Friday 5th June - Nouveau Stade Velodrome, Marseille, France
    Sunday 7th June – ZiggoDome, Amsterdam, Holland
    Thursday 11th June - Stade De France, Paris, France
    Saturday 4th July – Roskilde Festival, Denmark
    Tuesday 7th July – Telenor Arena, Oslo, Norway
    Thursday 9th July – Tele2 Arena, Stockholm, Sweden

    Sunday, 8 March 2015

    Paul quits the Beatles....in 1968!

    George and John at George's house. Photo: Michael Herring
    Today's Daily Mail has the story and photos of a 19 year old fan who turned up uninvited on John’s doorstep in 1968 and was invited in for breakfast with John and Yoko. The fan, Michael Herring, later shared a car ride with John to George Harrison’s house to see the Beatles recording – and he witnessed the opening of a letter said to announce McCartney’s resignation.

    Do we need to rethink history? The Beatles' biographers Mark Lewisohn and Hunter Davies also offer their comments on the episode.

     Read more: The Daily Mail

    Friday, 6 March 2015

    Ringo Starr - Postcards From Paradise (Lyric Video)

    McCartney plays in Europe in May-June-July

    Poster for the Europe tour
    After Seoul, South Korea on 2 May, McCartney is heading for Europe. As part of the European leg of the "Out There" tour, the Daily Telegraph reports that three dates in the UK are planned, Birmingham, London and Liverpool. The Saturday May 23 O2 show in London will take place 50 years after he finished writing his classic track "Yesterday".
    Paul said: "I'm often never aware of these anniversaries until someone points it out. People always say to me 'hey, did you know it was 30 years since this and 30 years since that', so it's impossible to stay on top of it all. But I never need an excuse to celebrate so it's always nice to hear! "For me it's a happy coincidence that The O2 show falls at this time. It's great that people all over the world reacted so well to the song, it's all you can hope for! It feels like it has taken on a life of its own over the years. "The song still is and always has been an important part of our live show. "It's always very emotional for me to hear crowds singing it so loudly at my concerts and I'm looking forward to singing it along with the audience at the O2 in May."
    Paul said: “It’s always great when you get to play in your home country. It’s been a little while since I’ve performed here so we’re planning a few surprises and looking forward to playing some songs we’ve never played here. We’ve taken this tour all over the world but there’s nothing quite like rocking out with your home audience. We’ll see you soon.”

    Tickets for the UK dates go on sale on Monday at 10am, probably Saturday or Sunday from Paul McCartney's own web site. The Birmingham concert is Wednesday May 27 at the Barclaycard Arena, and in Liverpool Paul will play at the Echo Arena on Thursday May 28. In June, Paul visits France and Holland before heading over to play at the Firefly festival in Delaware June 18th - his 73d birthday.
    McCartney returns to Europe in July, when he will play three concerts in Scandinavia, one of them at the Roskilde Festival in Denmark, then he's off to Norway before finishing the European tour in Stockholm, Sweden - the first country The Beatles toured in outside of Great Britain.

    The full European tour:

    Saturday May 23rd – The O2, London, Great Britain
    Wednesday May 27th – Barclaycard Arena, Birmingham, Great Britain
    Thursday May 28th – Echo Arena, Liverpool, Great Britain
    Friday 5th June - Nouveau Stade Velodrome, Marseille, France
    Sunday 7th June – ZiggoDome, Amsterdam, Holland
    Thursday 11th June - Stade De France, Paris, France
    Saturday 4th July – Roskilde Festival, Denmark
    Tuesday 7th July – Telenor Arena, Oslo, Norway
    Thursday 9th July – Tele2 Arena, Stockholm, Sweden

    PaulMcCartney.com will have tickets for sale prior to the general sale from this page, the UK concerts will be available from tomorrow, Saturday from this page. To order from PaulMcCartney.com, you must be registered at the site at least two hours before you can order tickets.

    Thursday, 5 March 2015

    Ringo preview

    Ringo Starr has made available three of the songs from his new album, Postcards From Paradise on Spotify in the shape of a virtual EP. The songs are the title track, "Postcards from Paradise", "Right side of the road" and "Not looking Back"

    Link: Spotify

    Monday, 2 March 2015

    Spoof interview confuses fans

    The fake news item
    The World News Daily Report used George Harrison's birthday, 25 February this year to publish an "interview" with Ringo Starr, where Starr was to have claimed that the real Paul McCartney died in 1966 and was replaced by a lookalike. Of course, long time Beatles fans realised that this was just a retelling of the 1969 "Paul is dead" rumour. By putting the myth into the mouth of Ringo Starr, the spoof news page was taken seriously by some, and fuelled the "Paul is dead" cult, which still blossoms on the internet, courtesy of people who are prone to conspiracy theories. In the article, writer Barbara Johnson claimed that Ringo came up with the story in an interview with the Hollywood Inquirer in his LA home "this morning".
    In reality, Ringo is currently touring, and on 24. February he was giving a concert in Sarasota, Florida, and while "the interview" was supposedly done in his home in LA the next morning, Ringo was really en route to Brazil, where he played in Sao Paolo on the night of the 26. February.

    While not ‘satire,’ per se, World News Daily Report follows the old-school Tabloid-styled faux-journalism of its predecessors, such as the Weekly World News. As such, you will find disclaimers neither revealing its satirical nature nor reveling in its journalistic integrity. It’s just for entertainment purposes, so they rely on the sheer audacity of the topics covered to be its built-in disclaimer.

    To be blunt, World News Daily Report is one of the sites on the internet who just publishes fake sensational stories in order to earn money from people clicking on their advertisements.

    This is the second time in a short while that a fake news story has been confusing Beatles fans, last week a story of a 2015 remake of Abbey Road, featuring Kanye West as John Lennon caused similar controversy.

    Source: World News Daily Report
    The "Paul is dead" rumour on Wikipedia

    Carol Tyler's Fab 4 mania

    Carol Tyler's illustration of Beatles '65
    Carol Tyler (born 1951) is an American painter, educator, comedian, and Eisner Award-nominated cartoonist known for her autobiographical stories. She is also a huge fan of the Beatles. In 1965 she saw the Beatles in Chicago and kept a journal of the events in the week leading up to it. So now, 50 years later, she is channelling her inner 13 year old self to set the stage in the months prior, so that the 'week of' journal is more meaningful.

    Her blog can be found here: http://fab4mania.blogspot.com.

    The blog is written in 50 years ago real time, and will lead up to August 20, which is the concert date. After that, it becomes a book.