The Beatles at the Indra Club in Hamburg, some time in August, 1960. At the time, they were five: John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison, Stuart Sutcliffe and Pete Best. This photo has been signed by Pete.
2010 marks the 50th anniversary of the Beatles. Why? Because come August, it will be 50 years since the Beatles abandoned their jobs and schools to go to Hamburg and work professionally as musicians. Upon Allan Williams' proposal, they gave up their day jobs, recruited Pete Best to become their drummer and set forth to Hamburg, where they effectively started their career by becoming the resident band at the Indra Club on August 17th, 1960.
This will not go unnoticed. At least, not in Hamburg!
As you know, the Indra Club still stands, and is in operation as a club with live bands and a bar. For a number of years, it was renamed "Die Blockhütte" after the next door original "Blockhütte" burned down, but it was reopened as the Indra Club in 1998 under it's present owner, Orhan Sandikci. The Indra Club is planning a Beatles festival on it's premises from the 17th to the 20th of August 2010. No details yet, but we'll update you as soon as we have news about it.
But another Hamburg celebration is in preparation even earlier. On May 22nd, there's going to be a "Come Together Festival" in Hamburg, headlined by the swedish Beatles cover band "Liverpool". Guests from the Beatles history has been invited, and so far, the names of Cynthia Lennon and Pete Best has been mentioned. The festival will be arranged by Horst Fascher (co-founder of the original Star-Club), Michael Segebart (artist from Hamburg), Klaus Cordt (manager from Sweden) and Achim Schultz (from AS-Musicrecording Munich). In addition, the festival is being supported by Mike Storey CBE, the Lord Mayor of Liverpool and Liverpool's present cultural ambassador Joe Flannery, also known as a former business partner of Brian Epstein. The "Come Together Festival" will also be hitting some other german cities.
The city of Hamburg got their own Beatles museum last year, as well as a Beatles walking tour, so they are now equipped to receive Beatles tourists in a far better way then in the previos decades. I had the pleasure of visiting the museum in early December, and I was thoroughly impressed. I found the museum a better experience than the Beatles Story museum in Liverpool.
From Beatlemania Hamburg
Here's the press release for the "Come Together Festival":
With the compliments of Mike Storey CBE, Lord Mayor of Liverpool and Joe Flannery, Liverpool's present culture ambassador and former partner of Brian Epstein, we proudly announce the Come Together Festival 2010.
The festival will be attended by radio and television.
At the occasion of the 50th Beatles Anniversary Events in Hamburg and Germany, we are going to celebrate a very special concert on May 22nd 2010 in Hamburg.
A Germanwide premiere, during which we will pass on the musical legacy of the Beatles to the future generation. Germany's leading youth orchestra will perform the music of the Beatles as you will never be able to hear live again. Musicians of all generations from Germany, Sweden and Great Britain will participate in an open-air event dedicated to the sound of the Beatles.
The renowned band Liverpool, awarded on Swedish radio and television, will be there, just as well as various well known bands from Liverpool. Furthermore you will be able to meet VIP's and contemporary witnesses with the likes of Pete Best & Cynthia Lennon.
Let's celebrate, truly in the sense of John Lennon's "GIVE PEACE A CHANCE" and "ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE"
(further concerts in Germany are planned)
Officially Released December 19, 2009 from Achim Schultz AS-Musicrecording Verlag München
The Indra Club Official Website
Aschim Schultz MySpace Page
The Come Together Festival on Horst Fascher's Website