Beatle Cars

By |2022-04-11T09:46:06-07:00April 14, 2021|1964, 1965, 1966, 1967, 1968, Magical Mystery Tour, Psychedelia, Sgt. Pepper|

One of the perks of the mega-fame and fortune the Beatles enjoyed in the 1960s was buying cool automobiles. I think that a look at one of the cars owned by each Beatle in the mid-1960s reveals something about the personality of each. On to the cars: Ringo owned this 1964 Facel Vega Facel II, which describes as "a brutally powerful, but supremely comfortable four-place coupe that didn't skimp on style. Power came from a thumping 6.3-liter Chrysler Typhoon V8 that turned out up to 390 horsepower and could scoot the Facel II to a reported top speed of 150 miles [...]

Beatles on Ed Sullivan, 57 years ago

By |2022-06-02T04:25:10-07:00February 10, 2021|1964, 1965, Ed Sullivan, Television|

It's been almost six decades since The Beatles made their first appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show on February 9, 1964. As a Gen X-era fan, I found watching the four Ed Sullivan Beatles shows in their entirety (on a DVD) a revelation. [The other shows were on February 16 and 23, and September 12, 1965.] I highly, highly recommend watching the episodes in full; clips of the Beatles' performances don't give a sense of what was really happening on stage during these shows. The commercials add yet another dimension, underlining how much the Ed Sullivan show was family-friendly but pitched toward [...]

The Beatles in musical context, 1963-1965

By |2019-07-18T00:29:10-07:00December 1, 2016|1963, 1964, 1965, Beach Boys, Beatles vs. Stones, Bob Dylan, Guest blogger, Other bands, The Rolling Stones|

Guest Dullblogger Justin McCann, a freelance writer, musician, and self-described “inveterate lurker” on Hey Dullblog, offers these observations on the Beatles’ musical context in 1963-65. Please give him a warm welcome. As innovative as the Beatles were, their rivals — the Stones, The Who, the Kinks, Bob Dylan et. al. — were often just as inventive and you can read about them on this website if you want to know about the greatest legends of the music industry. If other musicians hadn’t been so good, the Beatles wouldn’t have felt the need to compete with them. And if the Beatles — particularly Paul [...]

Eight Days A Week: 5 Great Things About Ron Howard’s Documentary

By |2022-08-25T17:28:11-07:00September 26, 2016|1963, 1964, 1965, Beatle History, Beatlemania, concert, Live, Movies, Uncategorized|

Getting ready to perform, during the suit-and-tie era. Ron Howard's Eight Days A Week documentary of the Beatles' touring years is excellent. Not perfect, not a definitive look at the totality of the Beatles' career, but very good at doing what it sets out to do. Howard does shy away from the unseemly elements of the Beatles' life on the road, most obviously the rampant sex. And he doesn't delve into the disenchantment that Lennon and Harrison later expressed about the experience of being Beatles. But Howard is aiming to show us what being on public display felt like for [...]

The General Erection

By |2015-09-27T23:13:41-07:00September 27, 2015|1965|

Here's that interview with John Lennon on the occasion of "A Spaniard In the Works" I alluded to in the Beatles and the Aristocracy comment thread. From the June 18th, 1965 edition of the BBC programme "Tonight" hosted by Kenneth Allsop, it's a real reminder of why Britain needed the Beatles. And how the world will always need them. "Do you think you'd be published, uh, were you not a Beatle?" "The pop business is a young man's world...Do you think that perhaps, uh, writing a book like this, and writing at all, might be an unconscious attempt to win recognition in [...]

1965: The Most Revolutionary Year In Music

By |2015-03-11T22:00:15-07:00March 11, 2015|1965, books|

Gentle Readers, the following is an excerpt from Andrew Jackson's "1965: The Most Revolutionary Year In Music." You'll have to read the book to decide whether his title speaks the truth, but in the meantime here's Andrew's take on The Beatles, Dick Lester, and the little-known bit of 60s cinema called "The Knack…and How to Get It." My only question is -- having seen the movie once, about 20 years ago -- is Ray Brooks obviously John Lennon? The author is giving a reading tonight (Thurs 3/12) at Los Angeles' Book Soup. And of course, videos, playlists, and more excerpts can be [...]

Ticket to Ride Was the First…What?

By |2014-01-08T16:28:43-08:00January 8, 2014|1965|

Beatles as City Gents. Bowlers—check. Umbrellas—check. Fat arses—not shown. MIKE GERBER • John, as we all know, claimed that "Ticket to Ride" was the first heavy metal song. (Actually he said "one of the first," but we all know what John meant. He meant, "I personally invented heavy metal. As did Yoko.") But this weekend, KLOS's Chris Carter commemorated the anniversary of Mal Evans' death by playing Badfinger's "No Matter What"—a tune Mal produced. As it played, I thought that "Ticket to Ride" seems more like the first "power pop" song than the first heavy metal one. Opinions?* [...]

Cries and Whispers, Crashes and Flutters: 10 Favorite Beatles Musical Micro-Moments

By |2016-12-03T07:44:13-08:00November 27, 2013|1963, 1965, 1966, 1967, 1968, 1969, John Lennon, Lennon, McCartney, Paul McCartney, Ringo, Ringo Starr|

Recording "Real Love," 1994:Gut genius at work. DEVIN McKINNEY  •  We all know you can take the Beatles to the outer limit and upper extremity of significance—Best thing in universal history—and then narrow that unit to its subordinate but still-impressive absolutes:  Best miracle of the 20th century; best socio-cultural force of the 1960s; Best group of the “rock era.” Having accepted all of that, you can, and we all have, then go superlative in descending levels of specificity: Best album; best song; best vocal performance—John; best vocal performance—Paul; best bass playing; best guitar solo; best everything else. But have we [...]

Sid Bernstein obituary

By |2013-08-21T15:49:58-07:00August 21, 2013|1964, 1965, Obituaries|

Paul McCartney and Sid Bernstein. MIKE GERBER • Sad news today: Sid Bernstein, one of America's first Beatlemaniacs and a man who helped orchestrate the peerless mayhem of 1964 and 1965, has died at 95. "The son of a Harlem tailor," wrote Bob Spitz, "he was convinced of The Beatles' greatness before he ever heard them sing a note…Bernstein reached into his own pocket to book no less a venue than Carnegie Hall for a group that had no hit record and no following in America." Then Capitol decided to really push "I Want To Hold Your Hand," Ed Sullivan [...]

Psychedelia in the UK: "A Technicolor Dream"

By |2013-08-12T18:01:53-07:00July 23, 2013|1965, 1966, 1967, Documentaries, John Lennon, Paul McCartney, Sgt. Pepper|

Inside the "Ally Pally," for The 14-Hour Technicolor Dream, 1967 Any of you that have been interested by my burblings on "psychedelia"—by which I mean the whole gestation, birth and decay of the flower-power movement—will be interested in a video I streamed from Netflix last night: "A Technicolor Dream." It documents the UK scene: the Albert Hall poetry reading in 1965; the Indica bookstore; IT; The London Free School; UFO; and finally the Fourteen Hour Technicolor Dream on April 30, 1967. Lots of Beatles-related stuff in here, from McCartney's right-hand Miles, to footage of a very stoned John Lennon. Here's [...]

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