Daytrippin' Beatles Magazine

The Latest Beatles News, Travel, Events and Merchandise


Remembering The Beatles’ early days with the late manager Allan Williams and promoter Sam Leach

Not only did The Beatles’ community lose record producer, George Martin, in 2016, but also two businessmen that helped The Beatles in the early days of their career. Allan Williams, The Beatles’ first manager, died on December 30 at the age of 86 and Sam Leach, Liverpool concert promoter, died on December 21 at the age of 81. Both local Liverpool businessmen were involved in The Beatles career in the early 1960s just before Brian Epstein came onto the scene.

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In the early days of The Beatles in Liverpool, John, Paul, George and Stuart Sutcliffe used to hang out at the Jacaranda club owned by Allan Williams. Stuart had painted murals for the basement of the club. Of all the lads, Stuart was closest with Williams, and as a result, he let the group perform and rehearse at the club.
In May 1960, Allan Williams became their first booking manager. He got them gigs often in rough parts of town where Teddy Boys used to frequent. In July 1960, they played at an illegal strip club owned by Williams.

In August 1960, Allan Williams got the Beatles their initial gig in Hamburg, Germany. Many groups from Liverpool were finding success in Hamburg, so the Beatles jumped at the chance.

“If it hadn’t been for Hamburg, there would be no Beatles,” Williams declared in a 1980s interview. “The work there was so fantastically hard. They would work 7 nights a week. Sometimes they would open at 7:00 (pm) and 3:00 in the morning, they’d still be on stage. And people say to me, ‘Alan, tell us the secret of how to be a Beatle.’ I say, ‘Go to Germany for 6 months, work 7 nights a week, 8 hours a night, and then come back and ask me the same question.”

However, during the time of The Beatles’ second trip to Hamburg in the Spring of 1961, their relationship with Allan Williams fell apart. Williams claimed that The Beatles never paid him his commission for booking them in Hamburg.

“The second time I sent them to Hamburg I got a phone call from Stu Sutcliffe,” Williams recalled. “He said ‘John has decided we shouldn’t pay you a commission because we got the job second time round’.

Since they had been able to arrange the gig at The Top Ten Club on their own, they told Williams they no longer needed his services. Williams was furious. He threatened to take legal action against them, but in the end, he let them go.

samleach-beatlescEnter Sam Leach. Leach was a Liverpool concert promoter. He would book over 40 gigs for The Beatles starting in early 1961 at clubs like The Cassanova Club and The Tower Ballroom. (Leach is pictured in the front with George and John)
 

“The first time I saw them, I realized how good they were,” Sam Leach recalled. “They were the best rock band on the planet at that time and I told them so. I said ‘One day you’ll be as big as Elvis’. John Lennon laughed and said ‘We’ve got a right nutter here, Paul’.”

Leach also sponsored “Operation Big Beat”, a mega-show that featured up to 5 rock and roll bands in one night. The Beatles first performed at Operation Big Beat in November 1961 as the headliner.

Sam Leach says he had a verbal agreement to be The Beatles manager, solidified with a handshake. But when Brian Epstein came into the picture, The Beatles decided to go with Brian instead.

“1961 was their [The Beatles] best year for rock and roll,” Sam Leach said, “because Brian sort of smoothed them up and changed their image a little bit and became more pop, but as a rock band they were supreme.”

Both Williams and Leach wrote books about their experiences with The Beatles:
The Birth of The Beatles by Sam Leach

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Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, director Ron Howard attend 10th anniversary of The Beatles LOVE show in Las Vegas

On July 14, 2016, Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, Yoko Ono and many more celebrities gathered in Las Vegas to celebrate the 10th anniversary of The Beatles LOVE show by Cirque du Soleil. The audio and visual experience of the show has been revamped and enhanced to give the production a fresh look.

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Ringo Starr, Barbara Bach, Joe Walsh, Marjorie Bach; July 14, 2016; Photo by Trina Yannicos

Giles Martin, who serves as audio producer of the show, said that 10 years ago, “we used a lot of cutting-edge technologies to put The Beatles music into a 2,000-seat space, 7,000 speakers in the room. But the technology now has moved on so much and the actual sound bit of the show we can improve.”
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The updated version of LOVE, which features a cast of 70 performers, includes advanced projection technology, new acrobatic acts, a remixed soundtrack with a new song (“Twist and Shout”), colorful costumes, brand new speakers and state-of-the-art video panels featuring The Beatles’ images.

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Paul and Ringo with the cast of The Beatles LOVE; July 14, 2016; Photo by MJ Kim

This is the fourth time in 10 years that Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr have publicly attended the show together. The first time was when the show opened in 2006, the second time was for the 1st anniversary in 2007, the third time was for the 5th anniversary in 2011, and now in 2016 for the 10th anniversary. Sadly, two members of the Beatles’ family who attended past celebrations have since passed away: George Martin and Cynthia Lennon. (see photos from the LOVE premiere in 2006)

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Paul McCartney and wife, Nancy; July 14, 2016; Photo by Trina Yannicos

Also in attendance was Ron Howard, director of the upcoming documentary, The Beatles: Eight Days a Week – The Touring Years, and he shared some insights on the making of his film which opens in September. He said he has interviewed Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr twice for the movie which documents The Beatles’ years on the road.

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Yoko Ono; July 14, 2016; Photo by Trina Yannicos

“It’s kind of an adventure/survival story in a way,” Ron Howard explained in an exclusive interview on the red carpet. “I really wanted to take the audience inside the experience a little bit. It’s not something that’s just ‘here’s where they went’, it’s how and why things worked the way they did. I hope the added value of letting audiences understand really how intense the pressures were from the outside while they were going through all of this AND continuing to grow as artists in this remarkable way.”
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Giles Martin (left) and director Ron Howard at The Beatles LOVE 10th anniversary celebration; July 14, 2016; Photo by Trina Yannicos

 

When asked if he has always been a Beatles fan, Howard remarked:
“Always a fan, not encyclopedic, not a fanatic. So in a way I’m sort of speaking for that group of people who kind of thinks they know the story, and now I can turn to that crowd, maybe the millennials in particular, and say you know the music, you know the name The Beatles, and you know they were big, but you just have no idea really what the story was and the intensity of that journey – what it meant to culture and what it meant for these guys to live through it.”

Paul and Ringo posted their own photo together on Instagram celebrating the LOVE show’s 10th anniversary:
https://www.instagram.com/p/BH30Qc7AWEX/?taken-by=paulmccartney
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Historical Beatle gems hidden among vast display at GRAMMY Museum’s new fab exhibit

by Trina Yannicos
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Originally launched in 2014 in New York City to celebrate the 50th anniversary of The Beatles first visit to the U.S., the “Ladies and Gentlemen… The Beatles!” exhibit has finally made its way to the West Coast. The GRAMMY Museum, which curated the exhibit along with the avid memorabilia collectors of Fab Four Exhibits, opened the exhibit in Los Angeles on July 1, and it will be on display through September 5, 2016.

The exhibit focuses on the years 1964 to 1966 and The Beatles’ influence on America. Along with countless big and small memorabilia items are interactive displays, audio interviews, concert video clips and a short film shown in the Clive Davis Theater featuring musicians, including Ringo Starr, Graham Nash, Petula Clark and Ozzy Osbourne, talking about the impact of The Beatles.

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The big ticket items in this exhibit include Ringo’s Abbey Road jacket, Paul McCartney’s Shea Stadium jacket, Ringo’s black suit from A Hard Day’s Night, and the Beatles’ drumhead which was given to Madame Tussauds Wax Museum in London in April 1964 when wax figures of The Beatles were made.
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While we’ve come to expect most rock and roll exhibits to display original instruments and clothing used by the musicians, it’s the little things that make this exhibit shine and showcase its sincerity and authenticity. For example, an original program from the Beatles’ Carnegie Hall concerts on February 12, 1964 lists Paul McCartney’s name incorrectly as “John McCartney.”

Another unique item is the official proclamation when The City of New Orleans declared “Beatles Day in New Orleans” on September 16, 1964, which coincided with The Beatles’ concert there that same day. All four Beatles signed the proclamation.
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The exhibit also includes memorabilia from The Beatles’ early days in Liverpool and Hamburg. A personal letter written by George Harrison in 1962 when The Beatles were in Hamburg showcases the wit and humor of the “quiet” Beatle:
“Thank you for the. We are all still very in Hamburg as the. I started a letter to you on Thursday but it seemed to get a bit ‘you know’, so I have decided to write another.”

Other items of note include the first pair of “granny” glasses that John Lennon ever wore and a lock of John Lennon’s hair given to a fan at a concert in August 1963. John Lennon signed his autograph: “Love from ‘Bald’ John Lennon.”

The exhibit also features a large display of Beatles merchandising products including Beatles coloring books, coin purses and more from 1964 in their original packaging.
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There is much to see at this exhibit. Reserve at least two hours to take it all in. And, on your way out, make sure to get your photo while crossing Abbey Road in London with the help of a virtual scenic backdrop – luckily this photo op doesn’t require dodging the traffic!
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New Beatles statue in Liverpool

It’s hard to believe that there has never been a traditional permanent statue of The Beatles erected – until now! The new statue of The Fab Four was unveiled on Friday, December 4, 2015 at Liverpool’s Pier Head.

beatles-statue-liverpool

The bronze statue depicting all four Beatles in suits, topcoats and Beatle boots, circa 1963 reminiscent of their Live at the BBC album cover photo, was unveiled by John Lennon’s sister, Julia Baird, and Liverpool Deputy Mayor Ann O’Byrne. According to The Liverpool Echo, the statue weighs approximately 1.3 tons and was sculpted by artist Andrew Edwards.

The faces look extremely lifelike and the statues are a few feet taller than the real thing, causing most people to reach only the shoulder height of John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr for photo purposes. John and Paul are placed slightly ahead of George and Ringo as they appear to be walking down the street together. The statue was presented to the city by the Merseybeat venue the Beatles helped to make famous, The Cavern Club.

The statue unveiling marks 50 years since The Beatles final show in Liverpool at the Empire Theatre on December 5, 1965. Sculptor Andy Edwards told the BBC that he hopes his statue will become “a place of ritual” for people to come together.

“The statue stands in loving memory of the best band in the world – the band that leapt from The Cavern stage to worldwide recognition,” Julia Baird said.

See a slideshow of the new Beatles statue from every angle

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Ringo Starr ‘Photograph’ live slideshow in Los Angeles and book review

Ringo Starr

Ringo Starr in Los Angeles, Sept 25, 2015; Photo credit: Daytrippin.com

The new Photograph book by Ringo Starr includes Ringo’s personal photos mixed with handwritten letters and memorabilia from his own collection. Ringo attributes the majority of the items shown in the book up to 1964 thanks to his mother who was diligent at saving everything.

The book spans Starr’s lifetime from his early childhood, including time spent in the hospital, his teenage years playing with Rory Storm and the Hurricanes, all the way through to his solo career playing with the first All-Starr band. The Beatles’ years feature unique photos of Ringo’s bandmates that only another “Beatle” could capture.

Ringo Starr Photograph bookThe 304-page book has a dust jacket with a hole cut out on the front to reveal a photo of Ringo (the first “selfie”) on the actual hardcover of the book. This is the third incarnation of the book which was released as a limited edition book by Genesis Publications in 2013 along with a multimedia-filled e-book.
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On September 25, 2015, Ringo joined Conan O’Brien in a live slideshow event at the El Rey Theatre to discuss Photograph. O’Brien, a self-professed Beatles fan, was the perfect choice to interview Starr trading one-liners with him throughout the conversation.

Conan and Ringo sat on the corner of the stage facing each other with a huge screen in the background. Laughter set the tone of the evening. Conan started off by saying: “I think I’m here to book you an airline flight, Ringo. Would you like an aisle seat?”

As the slideshow began, the audience reacted fondly to early photos of Ringo with his mother, including one when he was 7 years old in the hospital with tuberculosis. Ringo shared stories of what his early childhood was like as pictures of him with one of his first drum kits was shown.

When Conan pointed out the streak of gray on the right side of Ringo’s hair noticeable in some early pictures, Ringo revealed that he had alopecia at age 18. He said the doctors told him it would either eventually cover his whole head or it would go away altogether. Luckily for Ringo, the gray went away by the time he was a Beatle.

Ringo Starr and Conan O'Brien

Ringo Starr and Conan O’Brien in conversation at the El Rey Theatre, Sept 25, 2015; Photo credit: Daytrippin.com

In one photo on page 62 of the book, Ringo, pictured with his mother, Elsie, and stepdad, Harry, is showing off his shoes which happen to be Birkenstocks.

“I was ahead of my time,” Ringo responded.
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Ringo described how The Beatles’ manager, Brian Epstein, called him on a Wednesday in 1962 asking him to join the Beatles and play a gig with them that night. However, Ringo had already committed to a gig with Rory Storm at Butlins Camp so Ringo explained that he’d join the band on Saturday.

“I’ll join the Beatles, but on my schedule,” Conan joked.

On page 82 is a photo of Ringo with George Harrison and Paul McCartney before he had joined The Beatles. A girl on the right side is staring at Paul. “The best part of this photo for me,” Ringo observed, “is the chick looking at Paul… She’s like, ‘I’m ready.'”

Pointing out his picture of John Lennon sitting in a hotel room, Ringo said, “What the hell is he doing… nobody can do this!” Ringo and Conan both remarked how Lennon’s leg was extremely flexible to sit up so high on his lap. “Cirque du Soleil was calling,” Ringo quipped.

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Moving through The Beatles’ years, there was a shot of Ringo and Peter Sellers, who The Beatles were big fans of. In 1969, Ringo starred with Sellers in the film, ‘The Magic Christian.’ Ringo revealed that in addition to money, Sellers gave him his house as payment for being in the film.

“What?” Conan exclaimed. “That’s fantastic, you had a great agent,” he continued. “I’m calling my agent tomorrow and firing him.”

During the hour-long conversation, Ringo stated his hopes for a future project. Since all four of The Beatles had their own cameras during Beatlemania, Ringo hopes that a second photo book can be done in collaboration with the photos of John, Paul and George. “Then I’ll be in more of the photos,” Ringo concluded.

Ringo Starr’s Photograph is available on Amazon.com
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The Beatles official music videos finally to be released on DVD

Beatles 1+ Deluxe Edition Celebrates the Sights and Sounds of The Beatles in 50 Films and Videos paired with all-new stereo and surround audio mixes of The Beatles 1

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The Beatles filming “Rain”, May 20, 1966; Photo: Apple Corps Ltd

“These videos and films are spectacular reminders of the era we lived in. They also rock!” – Paul McCartney

“I think it’s really interesting to see the videos we made, some of them incredible and some of them really incredible.  How else would we have got to sit on a horse?” – Ringo Starr

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Finally, 50 of the Beatles music videos will be officially released on DVD and Blu-ray on November 6. The video packages will be available for purchase either separately or together with a new stereo surround mix of The Beatles 1 greatest hits collection CD.

PrintThe brand new Beatles 1+ celebrates their career in over 200 minutes through 50 promotional films and videos. This includes the 27 No.1s, with the restored videos, along with a second disc of 23 videos, including alternate versions, as well as rarely seen and newly restored films and videos; all include new audio mixes in deluxe CD/2DVD and CD/2Blu-ray packages.

DeluxeBluRayThe 27-track CD/DVD and CD/Blu-ray pairs beautifully restored videos for each song with new stereo and 5.1 Dolby Digital and DTS HD surround audio mixes. The 27-track audio CD is also being made available with new stereo mixes. A 2LP, 180-gram vinyl package will follow.

The new editions of The Beatles 1 have been made possible following extensive research, and restoration of the original promo films, classic television appearances and other carefully selected videos spanning the band’s history. Apple Corps dug deep into The Beatles’ vaults to select a broad range of films and videos for their rarity, historical significance and quality of performance.

An 18-person team of film and video technicians and restoration artists was assembled by Apple Corps to undertake painstaking frame-by-frame cleaning, color-grading, digital enhancement and new edits that took months of dedicated, ‘round-the-clock work to accomplish.

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The Beatles filming “Hello Goodbye” on November 10, 1967; Photo: Apple Corps Ltd.

The result is a visual rundown of The Beatles’ number one records, as well as additional tracks on the bonus disc of Beatles 1+. 20 of the films and videos were not used in The Beatles’ Anthology and of the remaining 30 included on The Beatles 1+ these were only seen in part or in alternate edits. For four of the videos, Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr have provided exclusive audio commentary and filmed introductions, respectively. 

DeluxeBluRaypackageThe 1+ Deluxe Edition is presented in an expanded 124-page illustrated hardcover book which includes ‘an appreciation’ of The Beatles’ groundbreaking films and videos by music journalist and author Mark Ellen and extensive, detailed track/video annotation by music historian and author Richard Havers.

The Beatles 1 27-track DVD and Blu-ray have a running time of 110 minutes, and the bonus 23-track DVD and Blu-ray included on the Beatles 1+ set run for 95 minutes.

(Source: Official Press release)

Order links

1 CD (2015 remaster)

1 DVD

1 Blu-ray

1 CD/DVD

1 CD/Blu-ray

1+ Deluxe CD/2DVD

1+ Deluxe CD/2Blu-ray

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Full Track Listing:

The Beatles 1 [CD; DVD; Blu-ray; CD/DVD; CD/Blu-ray]

DISC 1 AUDIO (CD) + DISC 1 VIDEO (DVD or Blu-ray)

  1. Love Me Do
  2. From Me To You
  3. She Loves You
  4. I Want To Hold Your Hand
  5. Can’t Buy Me Love
  6. A Hard Day’s Night
  7. I Feel Fine
  8. Eight Days a Week
  9. Ticket To Ride
  10. Help!
  11. Yesterday
  12. Day Tripper
  13. We Can Work It Out
  14. Paperback Writer
  15. Yellow Submarine
  16. Eleanor Rigby
  17. Penny Lane
  18. All You Need Is Love
  19. Hello, Goodbye
  20. Lady Madonna
  21. Hey Jude
  22. Get Back
  23. The Ballad of John and Yoko
  24. Something
  25. Come Together
  26. Let It Be
  27. The Long and Winding Road

DISC 1 VIDEO EXTRAS

Paul McCartney audio commentary

Penny Lane
Hello, Goodbye
Hey Jude

Ringo Starr filmed introductions

Penny Lane
Hello, Goodbye
Hey Jude
Get Back

The Beatles 1+ (CD/2DVD; CD/2Blu-ray]

DISC 1 AUDIO (CD) + DISC 1 VIDEO (DVD or Blu-ray)

(same as above)

DISC 2 VIDEO (DVD or Blu-ray)

  1. Twist & Shout
  2. Baby It’s You
  3. Words Of Love
  4. Please Please Me
  5. I Feel Fine
  6. Day Tripper *
  7. Day Tripper *
  8. We Can Work It Out *
  9. Paperback Writer *
  10. Rain *
  11. Rain *
  12. Strawberry Fields Forever
  13. Within You Without You/Tomorrow Never Knows
  14. A Day In The Life
  15. Hello, Goodbye *
  16. Hello, Goodbye *
  17. Hey Bulldog
  18. Hey Jude *
  19. Revolution
  20. Get Back *
  21. Don’t Let Me Down
  22. Free As A Bird
  23. Real Love

DISC 2 VIDEO EXTRA

Paul McCartney audio commentary

Strawberry Fields Forever

 

* alternate version

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