domingo, 30 de septiembre de 2012

Paul McCartney Dancing on a Sofa! (2009)

Subido por Lucy Zanetti el 21/02/2011
Paul McCartney Dances During Howard Stern Interview, Jan. 14th, 2009

Lizzie & Gayleen: backing vocals in "Across the Universe"

Subido por Lucy Zanetti el 06/01/2011
Uma versão pouco comum, enviada por Marco Antonio Mallagoli, do Revolution Fan Club - Brasil

John Lennon: The Ultimate Guide to His Life, Music & Legend‏
John Lennon: The Ultimate Guide to His Life, Music & Legend‏

Rolling Stone Special: John Lennon
by Wenner Media

The Editors of Rolling Stone bring you John Lennon: The Ultimate Guide to His Life, Music & Legend. An in-depth portrait of John as you’ve never seen him before, this special collector’s edition features both his first interview with Rolling Stone Magazine in 1968 and his final interview, just days before his death. Plus 50 intimate photos and tributes from the likes of Keith Richards and Stevie Wonder, as well as Yoko’s moving memories of his last days. This special edition is the perfect addition to any Beatles fan collection.

Product Details
ISBN-13: 9780594482512
Manufacturer: Wenner Media
Publication date: 9/28/2012

$11.99 price

sábado, 29 de septiembre de 2012

Abbey Road Anniversary Collection

Abbey Road Anniversary Collection
The Beatles. Photo shoot for the ‘Abbey Road' album cover – London, August 1969

TWICE at The Cavern - I'll be Back

Subido por PaulitaMacca el 28/10/2007
TWICE, dúo Beatle femenino integrado por Cecilia Díaz Moreno y Paula Silvestro en la Semifinal de Dúos Beatle de The Cavern Club Buenos Aires, con la cual quedaron seleccionadas para participar de la 7º Beatleweek Bs.As. por un lugar en la final.

viernes, 28 de septiembre de 2012


Paul has lent his support to the University of Leeds’ latest charity initiative, ‘Piano Postcards’, which aims to raise funds for two high profile music charities, Nordoff Robbins and Live Music Now.

The initiative, which follows the world famous Leeds International Piano Competition of which the University is a long-term supporter, features well known individuals contributing a postcard themed around pianos and music. The postcards form part of a unique exhibition hosted at the Stanley & Audrey Burton Gallery, Leeds; that will be auctioned off on eBay to raise funds for the two charities.

The exhibition runs until Saturday 13 October, while the eBay auction will start on Thursday 4 October and finishes on Sunday 14 October. For details on how to bid for Paul’s postcard visit:

Video: Paul at the Steinway Hall, New York

Last week published a story highlighting Paul's recent involvement in helping to restore a piano belonging to Motown Records. The unveiling of the historic nine-foot 1877 Steinway grand piano took place at a Motown Museum benefit at Steinway Hall in New York City on 18th September. Paul and Motown founder Berry Gordy both performed at the piano.

The Beatles Remasters to Make Vinyl Debut

The Beatles Remasters to Make Vinyl Debut

9/27/2012 by Erik Pedersen
The Beatles Vinyl Stereo Box Set Product - H 2012

UPDATED: The 14 sonically enhanced titles that debuted in 2009 will be issued Nov. 13 as 180-gram LPs individually and as a box set.

Check your cartridge and sharpen your stylus: Beatlemania is coming full circle.
The remastered Beatles albums that dropped on 9-9-09 will be released as LPs on Nov. 13, Apple Corps and EMI said Thursday. It’s the first time the sonically polished versions of the treasured records will be available in their original platter format.
The Fab Four’s 12 U.K. studio albums, plus the U.S.-originatedMagical Mystery Tour and the double-disc 1988 rarities collection Past Masters Volume One & Two, will be issued on 180-gram vinyl individually and in a limited-edition box set.
The band’s first four albums -- Please Please MeWith the BeatlesA Hard Day’s Night and Beatles for Sale -- will make their U.S. debuts as stereo LPs. The mono versions of the remastered vinyl albums will be released next year. Rubber Soul and Help will use the stereo remixes that Beatles producer George Martin supervised a quarter-century ago.
The LPs will feature such throwback accessories as the poster that came with The Beatles (aka The White Album) and the cutouts from Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.
The box, limited to 50,000 units, will include a 252-page hardcover book written by Kevin Howlettand feature career-spanning photos, a chapter for each of the albums and a look at the creation of the remasters and how the new LPs were prepared. Pricing for the package was not announced.
The remasters were a global hit upon their release in September 2009, coinciding with the debut of The Beatles: Rock Band, the video game that marked the group’s first toe-dip into digital waters. (The albums wouldn’t make their iTunes debut until November 2010.) More than 17 millions units were sold worldwide during the first seven months.
Also coming soon for Beatle lovers and the general public is the restored version the long-out-of-print 1967 film Magical Mystery Tour, which hits DVD/Blu-ray on Oct. 8 after a one-night-only screening tonight in select theaters.
While you're waxing nostalgic for the Moptops, check out a live rendition of "Yesterday" below.

Rare Beatles LP sells for over $22,000


by: Karen 'Gilly' Laney 2 days ago
This Beatles & Frank Ifield ‘On Stage’ album sold for a heavyweight price when the vinyl recently appeared for sale on eBay. The 10 day auction quickly started a bidding war, securing bids that took its .99 cent start price to $2500.00 in less than 90 minutes. It was all uphill from there, with the seller finally landing $22,268.68 for a record that was originally issued in 1964.
The featured songs ‘Please Please Me,’ Thank You Girl,’ ‘From Me To You,’ and ‘Ask Me Why’ were already in every fans collection, so when the label Vee Jay created ‘The Beatles & Frank Ifield On Stage’ record the label were trying to make it look as if they were offering the public something new.
Basically, Vee Jay was doing its best to cash in one last time on the recent success of the Beatles. Legal battles with Capital Records (who originally passed on signing them) found both companies in the courtroom fighting over who could issue what. The judge favored Vee Jay, allowing them to continue within the terms of the original contract but only for a brief time and this is when ‘On Stage’ re-appeared.
Frank Ifield was an easy listening and country music singer who had multiple hits in the early ‘60s. The label originally paired them by soliciting this collection as ‘Jolly What! England’s Greatest Recording Stars – The Beatles & Frank Ifield On Stage’ with a cover featuring an old British statesman wearing a Beatles wig. In Vee Jay’s fury to re-release the songs, the cover was changed to what is now known as the ‘portrait cover’ but apparently only 100 copies made it to the record stores.
This copy still in its shrink wrap has no sign of wear whatsoever, the corners are sharp and the back is crispy white. The seal is broken but the record within is described as “near mint” and the Vee-Jay rainbow label and custom inner sleeve are completely intact.
The seller, who’s written multiple Beatles records and memorabilia reference-price guides, is recognized as a leading authority on Beatles collecting, giving this item additional credibility.

New Book : "With the Beatles"

Photographer Robert Whitaker Captures the Mayhem and Magic of Beatlemania, from the Inside in "With the Beatles" By the Editors of LIFE

Read more here:

By LIFE Books
By LIFE Books

Published: Tuesday, Sep. 25, 2012
NEW YORK, Sept. 25, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- From 1964 to 1966, the world was consumed by Beatlemania, and one man, the band's "official" photographer, Robert Whitaker, was there to capture it all. From candid and personal moments to concerts and cover shoots, With the Beatles(Time Home Entertainment, Inc.; hardcover; 2012; $39.95) features hundreds of remarkable images that offer an inside look as the lads from Liverpool became the biggest thing on the planet.
Most of the book is filled with never-before-seen and rare photos of the Fab Four. Whitaker was, in a sense, the "fifth Beatle" during the height of Beatlemania. He was, at the same time, their contemporary and their chronicler. Hired by the band's manager Brian Epstein, he traveled with them around the world and played an important role in shaping and projecting their image as it transitioned from cute to cutting edge. With the Beatles features hundreds of photos personally selected by Whitaker, including dozens that are rare or appear for the very first time on these pages.
At work, at rest, at play – performing, napping, recording, posing – the Beatles are seen in a variety of settings and moods, both weird and wonderful, during their wild ride. Whitaker captures moments of happiness and humor, mischievousness and creativity, boredom and fatigue – and, above all, the mania.
Whitaker worked with the editors of LIFE on this special book until his final days, ensuring that all of us would be able to experience what is was like to be with the Beatles.
About LIFE The editors at LIFE vigorously carry on the traditions of excellence in photography, journalism and storytelling about our country and our world, which began with the founding of LIFE magazine in 1936 by editor and publisher Henry R. Luce. They have published books on a broad range of subjects, including New York Times bestsellers One Nation, LIFE Picture Puzzleand The American Journey of Barack Obama. The LIFE channel on features LIFE's legendary photo archives. The acclaimed LIFE for iPad app reached #1 in 33 countries shortly after its November 2010 launch.
WITH THE BEATLES By the Editors of Life Time Home Entertainment, Inc. Publication date: September 25, 2012 $39.95; Hardcover; ISBN 1-60320-231-5


Read more here:

Yoko Ono Q&A: 'I Know I'm Good'

Yoko Ono Q&A: 'I Know I'm Good'

by Justin Jacobs
 September 25, 2012 
At first glance, the notion of Yoko Ono pairing with Thurston Moore and Kim Gordon of Sonic Youth to create a mini-album of experimental noise rock with Ono's spoken word and howled syllable vocals over minimalist guitar seems like the weirdest music news to come down the pipeline this year. But think about it a second longer, and the whole project makes a lot of sense. All three figures have been leaders in experimental rock. All are proud outsiders, all seasoned vets.

"YOKOKIMTHURSTON" is the most recent project in one of Ono's most fruitful periods. Now nearing 80, she's released three albums in the past five years, including 2007's remix record "Open Your Box," which helped launch her current incarnation as dance club queen. She's also remained an outspoken peace activist - like her days with husband John Lennon - most recently awarding her biannual LennonOno Grant for Peace to jailed Russian activist musicians Pussy Riot on Sept. 21, the UN's International Day of Peace.

To mark the release of "YOKOKIMTHURSTON," out today on Chimera Music, Billboard caught up with the legendary icon of out-there.

You've been creating experimental, avant-garde music for decades. What makes this particular project stand out?
I am putting out sounds that are hard to take for most people -- to expand their experience of musical sounds. I compare what I am doing now to what 12 Tone composers did, especially, [early 20th century Austrian composer Arnold] Schoenberg. We are used to his music now. [Ed. Note: 12-tone music suggests using all 12 notes equally, instead of focusing on lateral-note melodies]. But in the beginning it must have been hard to take. That's how we advance our ear experience. We do it step by step.

You've been in the same sphere as Thurston and Kim for years. Tell me about how this collaboration finally happened?
I have so much respect for both Kim and Thurston; for their work in experimental music. John and I felt we did [bond over experimental music]. But if it was only us, we'd have been buried deep in the ocean by people who felt we were totally insane and should be shot. Well, they can't say that. There are Thurston and Kim, who vouch for our sanity!

What exactly do you respect about them, musically and as people?
Most people like to hear sounds they are used to. Unlike many rock or pop songwriters, Thurston and Kim are taking a chance in creating new sounds, without worrying about being unpopular. I like that in them.

Yoko, Thurston and Kim Perform 'Mulberry' Live

The record was created in February of last year, all in one day. Tell me about the process of creating this whole album in just a day.
Every moment in our lives is a miracle we should enjoy instead of ignoring. We just happened to not have ignored this incredible moment that happened between us three.

The record isn't easy -- it's pretty much the other side of the spectrum from radio pop music. Do you feel like the album is for everyone, or is it aimed at a specific audience?
Well, people are used to seeing their mirror image. Now we are showing the other side of the image they are so used to seeing. It's like being used to seeing a hero standing and waving the national flag. We are showing his guts, where the excrements are produced. It's not meant for a specific audience. It's to get used to the other side of the mirror.

You've worked with many musicians in your career, most famously your late husband. Which artists today are doing work you find fascinating? Who would you want to collaborate with from the current crop of musicians?
I'm not interested so much in collaboration. You see that from the history of my albums. I think John, Thurston, Kim and Sean [Lennon] are the main ones. But in live music situations, I've played with many very interesting musicians.

The music world really got behind the incarceration of Russia's Pussy Riot. Do you feel the spirit of Pussy Riot's protest -- for which they were arrested -- replicate the energy and vigor of protest music in the 1960's?
Are you living in our century to ask a question like that? So many musicians are now activists! It makes me very happy. I want to report to John and say, "Hey, are you looking at this?!"

There's that famous quote from John, when he called you "the world's most famous unknown artist." Does it ever bother you that so many people know who you are, but don't know much, or anything, about your art?
It doesn't bother me too much. I know I'm good. And I know there are a few who know it. That's about what you can get in life.

You've been a cultural icon for decades. But what do you fill your days with?
I'm pretty organized because I have to be between so many projects I'm taking care of at once. I'm on a roll, so to speak. So it doesn't bother me. I eat and sleep when I can. That's how it is.

Your canon of work is truly gigantic. In a hundred years, what do you believe your legacy will be? Is that different from what you wish it to be?
Well now, I don't have time to think about what would happen to my work a hundred years from now! That's why I am energetic, I think. Not thinking about things like that. What will be will be. I hope they create their own music, and feel kindly towards us old folks.

You've never been afraid to speak out about aspects of culture or politics that you felt were damaging to society. What do you see in the current US presidential race that angers, or inspires you?
Take it with a pinch of salt, my friends. Otherwise it will affect your health. The game up there is like a bad play. I wouldn't get too emotional about it.

Your career has been pretty unpredictable. What's next?
Who knows?
Kim Gordon, Thurston Moore and Yoko Ono

'Abbey Road' Anniversary Photo Collection

On this week in 1969 The Beatles released their album 'Abbey Road'. The iconic album cover turned a pedestrian crossing in London into an internationally famous landmark still visited by legions of fans today. 
Linda McCartney was on hand to document the album cover's photo shoot which took place in August of the same year. 
To celebrate the anniversary will be publishing a selection of Linda's photos from the shoot starting with today's image of the group beginning to walk over the crossing.  
Check back to on Friday to see the full collection. 

27 de septiembre de 2012

Ya esta disponible la preventa en el sitio de internet de cinepolis para la proyeccion de la pelicula Magical Mystery Tour
Les dejo el link para que compren su boleto:
La pelicula se proyectara solamente los dias 9 y 11 de octubre a las 21 hrs.

El costo del boleto es de $99.- y solo pueden comprar como maximo 6 boletos por tarjeta.

jueves, 27 de septiembre de 2012

This is a song of peace and love to John Lennon - Tributo por el grupo peruano Amigos

Subido por losperuanos el 29/11/2011
Disclaimer- I do not own this song nor do I make any profit from this video. Video realizado por Hanssel Privat para mis beatlermanos del mundo. Traduccion al ingles por Kelly Privat. En el Perú una de las bandas locales que hacía "covers" de Los Beatles en los años '80 era el grupo "Amigos" (liderado por Edmundo Delgado quien organiza los eventos "Un Día en la Vida"). 
El grupo "Amigos" compuso y grabó un tema que editó como disco sencillo, titulado "Canción Por John" (dedicada, obviamente, a Lennon). El tema tenía buena influencia Beatle y era agradable, sin ser extraordinario. Pero la letra era sentida y de todos modos es el único tributo que recuerdo hecho a Lennon por una banda peruana. 
Lo curioso es que en) la canción empieza con la melodía central de "For No One" reemplazando el corno francés con un teclado y termina con los coros finales de "Hey Jude"; ambos temas de Paul, no de John. Pero eso no desmerece el homenaje con punteos de guitarra que emulan a los de Harrison.Con el transcurrir de los años, creo que el tema se ha convertido en una rareza digna de interés histórico local.(nota publicada en revolution-beatles-peru por Leonardo Pizzarello.

PAUL Y RINGO NOMINADOS : Premios Lunas del Auditorio 2012 , México

El Auditorio Nacional dio a conocer a los nominados para la entrega de sus Lunas 2012, cuya entrega se efectuará en ceremonia celebrada el 31 de octubre a las 20:00 horas.
Paul McCartney y Ringo Starr estan nominados! 
Son 20 las categorías que engloban a lo mejor en música y espectáculos del ámbito nacional e internacional, con un extenso número de aspirantes al premio por cada una de ellas.
Dentro del rock en español, destacan agrupaciones como Babasónicos, División Minúscula, Los Bunkers, Café Tacvba, Molotov y Caifanes, mientras que en su equivalente anglosajón se encuentran las bandas James, Pearl Jam y el solista Paul McCartney, entre otras.
El pop reconoce el trabajo de intérpretes como Alejandro Fernández, Alejandro Sanz, Enrique Iglesias, Gloria Trevi y Paulina Rubio, al igual que Elton John, Justin Bieber y Selena Gomez.
El ámbito grupero se llenó este año con la música de Espinoza Paz, Jenni Rivera, Los Tigres del Norte y varios más.
Representantes de la música electrónica, afroamericana, mexicana, iberoamericana, tradicional, world music, lo mismo que del jazz, blues, ballet, la balada, danza moderna, tradicional, espectáculos familiares, alternativos y clásicos estarán presentes en los esperados premios que llegan a su edición número 11.

GEORGE : ¿Qué es la vida?
GEORGE : ¿Qué es la vida?



Paul McCartney - Bye Bye Blackbird - Live From Capitol Studios 2012 (HD)

Publicado el 20/03/2012 por TheSGTNicolai
Paul McCartney Live From Capitol Studios 2012
This performance was recorded live at a once in a lifetime performance that took place on Thursday 9th February, from the famed Capitol Studios where much of Sir Paul McCartney's Album 'Kisses On The Bottom' created.

Kisses On The Bottom is a collection of standards Paul grew up listening to, as well as two brand new McCartney compositions "My Valentine" and "Only Our Hearts" (which feature guest turns, respectively, from Eric Clapton and Stevie Wonder). Recorded with the aid of Grammy-winning producer Tommy LiPuma and Diana Krall and her band--who will back Paul for the Capitol live stream event--Kisses On The Bottom is a deeply personal journey through songs that, in some cases, a young Paul first heard his father perform on the family piano.

Motown – Project: Harmony Event

Motown – Project: Harmony Event
Motown – Project: Harmony event. Steinway Hall, NYC – 18th Sept 2012

New Motown Project: Harmony Collection

Last week published a story highlighting Paul's recent involvement in helping to restore a piano belonging to Motown Records. The unveiling of the historic nine-foot 1877 Steinway grand piano took place at a Motown Museum benefit at Steinway Hall in New York City on 18th September. Paul and Motown founder Berry Gordy both performed at the piano. Read the full story HERE!
Fans can see a collection featuring 16 new photos from the event HERE!
Photographs by Mary Ellen Matthews. 

Fab furore: Is it time to re-evaluate the Beatles' Magical Mystery Tour?

Fab furore: Is it time to re-evaluate the Beatles' Magical Mystery Tour?

John Harris
The Guardian, Tuesday 25 September 2012
On Monday 11 September 1967, two hours later than scheduled, a coach pulled out of Allsop Place, just behind Baker Street tube station. Filling 40 of its 43 seats were actors, technicians and camera operators – along with Paul McCartney, and a crowd of friends and associates of the Beatles. John Lennon, George Harrison and Ringo Starr were soon picked up near their commuter-belt homes in Surrey – whereupon the coach headed for an inconclusive and ill-starred trek around the West Country, ending in the less-than-glamorous environs of Newquay in Cornwall.
Just over three months later, after further filming at a Kent airfield, BBC1 screened the hour-long film the Beatles titled Magical Mystery Tour. It went out on Boxing Day at 8.35pm and 15 million people tuned in – but, presented with a bamboozling melange of unconnected scenes, often shakily shot and seemingly stuck together at random, most were not best pleased. Indeed, history records that the BBC's so-called reaction index – a number arrived at after quizzing viewers about what they had seen – scored its lowest-ever rating: 23 out of 100.
This rum turn of events, only a few months after the death of Beatles manager Brian Epstein, has long been seen as the Beatles' one true disaster. "Beatles mystery tour baffles viewers" was the headline in the Mirror, flagging up claims that "by the thousand, viewers protested to the BBC". The Express called it "tasteless nonsense" and "blatant rubbish". In the States, NBC cancelled an agreement to show the film on its broadcastleaving a print of it to be passed round US universities; it would not be shown again in Britain for over a decade. Only the Guardian offered any respite, praising "an inspired freewheeling achievement … a kind of fantasy morality play about the grossness, warmth and stupidity of the (Beatles') audience".
Anthony Wall, editor of the BBC arts programme Arena since 1985, was in his mid-teens back then. At his home in south London, he sat watching Magical Mystery Tour with his family and some neighbours, whose angry bafflement was of a piece with what would pour forth the next day. "I am that textbook 16-year-old who sat there in the front room, with the indoor aerial in one hand, thinking I was watching something completely wondrous," he says. "I can remember looking back at my mother and the neighbours, who were saying, 'Absolutely shocking – outrageous.'"
The Beatles on the Magical Mystery Tour busOn the Magical Mystery Tour bus
Wall goes on: "For years, you had to be a bit trepidatious about saying you liked Magical Mystery Tour. It was the same thing as Carry On films and spaghetti westerns being regarded with absolute contempt – whereas they're now seen as masterpieces. To say you liked Magical Mystery Tour was almost an indication that there was something wrong with you. It's taken all this time for it to be reassessed."
Talking me through a film still seen by many as a yawn-inducing mish-mash, Wall reels off some lofty reference points. "There was a sense that anything went. You could have the avant garde of [Michelangelo] Antonioni at one end, where everything would be perfectly orchestrated and fashioned; and, down at the other end, you've got Ken Kesey and the Merry Pranksters, or William Burroughs. The big point for me was when I saw Un Chien Andalou, the Buñuel and Dalí film, at much the same time. Magical Mystery Tour is a kind of acid-rock, 1967 version of that."
This is the essential argument of Magical Mystery Tour Revisited, an Arena programme that will be screened next week, just as a spruced-up version of the film, complete with outtakes and a commentary from McCartney, is released on DVD. Directed by Francis Hanly, director of the acclaimed recent series Jonathan Meades on France, the Arena film will feature McCartney and Starr, along with such appreciative voices as Martin Scorsese and Paul Merton. It puts the film in the context of the cutting-edge company the Beatles kept in bohemian London, and suggests that when their visions collided with a Britain still clinging to sensibilities of the war, there was always going to be trouble.
"Magical Mystery Tour was quite easy to dismiss at the time," says Hanly, "and it subsequently hasn't had a great press. I think maybe because people haven't seen it. The other films, Help! and A Hard Day's Night, have been knocking around, and they have a degree of professionalism – but to my mind, this is more interesting as a document of the band. It's got that little bit more edge to it."
The film remains a challenging viewing experience. When it starts, there are fleeting signs of a conventional, if amateurish comedy: Starr boarding the coach with his irritable Auntie Jessie; a camped-up introduction from a tour guide named Jolly Jimmy Johnson, a role for the grim-faced Scottish poet and humorist Ivor Cutler. But within about five minutes, the film begins leaping around with no regard for narrative sense.
The editing is often awful. None of its early comic threads are developed. Some scenes aren't just inexplicable, but arm-chewingly tedious. By the end, all that seems to point to redemption are such musical interludes as Lennon's I Am the Walrus and McCartney's The Fool on the Hill. But even these aren't up to snuff: Harrison's Blue Jay Way, a distracted evocation of staying up late in LA, is notable only for the fact it repeats the line "Don't be long" 29 times. In that sense, the Arena film and the DVD rerelease might be seen as proof of the revisionism regularly perpetrated by the two surviving Beatles and Apple Records (see also 2003's Let It Be … Naked, the stripped-down recasting of the Beatles' worst album).
And yet, and yet. To its devotees, Magical Mystery Tour may be flawed, but it has plenty of merit: if it spurns the imperatives of storytelling and simple coherence, that stands as proof of the Beatles' creative bravery and their understanding of countercultural cinema. "For me," says Scorsese in the Arena documentary, "the freedom of the picture was very important."
The Beatles get some food in Magical Mystery TourThe Beatles stop for fish and chips
Moreover, its key element is an apparent drive to send up an England of decaying authority, bad food and anti-climactic entertainment: the country in which the Beatles had grown up, embodied by the hollering sergeant played by their actor friend Victor Spinetti; the dream sequence in which Lennon serves bucketfuls of vomit-like spaghetti; and the very idea of a mystery tour on a coach. Not for nothing, perhaps, did Harrison claim that the one group who later developed the Beatles' essential sensibility was Monty Python.
Gavrik Losey, now 74, was Magical Mystery Tour's assistant producer. The son of the Hollywood film-maker Joseph Losey, who was chased out of the US during the McCarthy era, he came to the film after the crawl around the West Country had ended. "There was nobody there blowing a whistle and stamping their feet and saying, 'Do this and do that'," says Losey, who, although not as fulsome in his praise as some, goes along with the idea of the film as a Pythonesque social commentary. "It remains a very interesting observation of English society from the point of view of four very bright guys who had the money to pay for it." As soon as he began work, he says, the Beatles "kept talking to me about their past experiences, and how it was when they were little".
Losey has vivid memories of the constant improvisations. "John decided that for the race scene, he wanted six midget wrestlers," he says. "I got one of the girls who was working for NEMS [the Beatles' management company] out of bed and said, 'I don't know how you do this, but have you got some way of producing six midget wrestlers by midday tomorrow?' And a car arrived with six midget wrestlers in it. They had people on their books who could do these things."
There were also, he adds, the normal disasters of film-making: "Like when the generators collapsed before the formation dancers had to go home. Bribes had to be produced, and signed pictures. They were Come Dancing dancers, the real thing, brought down from Newcastle, Cardiff and Birmingham. We had about 20 busloads. The Beatles were a great calling card." The whirling couples appeared in the finale, soundtracked by McCartney's Your Mother Should Know, along with a posse of female RAF cadets. This section, says Wall, calls to mind a recent all-singing, all-dancing spectacular.
"What the Beatles grew up with was a Britain that has increasingly disappeared," he says. "But I think we saw a revival of it in the opening of the Olympics, which I thought was like a kind of grand staged version of Magical Mystery Tour. It was full of English things: nurses, policemen, mills, whatever." He sums up the film as "a softly satirised presentation of the culture they grew up in. They celebrate it but take the piss. All this Come Dancing stuff, the girls in uniforms, and coming down a staircase in white suits is kind of ridiculous, but they're also revelling in the peculiarity of it."
And that, he reckons, is the thread that joins the Beatles, Buñuel and Dalí, and the end of the pier. "All light entertainment," he says, "is only one step away from surrealism."
• Magical Mystery Tour Revisited is on BBC2, 6 October at 9.45pm, followed by a showing of the film. The DVD is released on 8 October.
In this clip from their 1967 film Magical Mystery Tour, the Beatles perform I Am The Walrus 

The best books on the Beatles

The best books on the Beatles

Fifty years after their first single was released in Britain, John Harris considers which books on the Beatles have stood the test of time – and what to look out for in the future
John Harris
The Guardian, Wednesday 26 September 2012

Modern pop is built on the denial of time. Reunions extend into the distance; the way we now listen to music means that songs from the distant past constantly jostle with songs from the present. With the increasing number of pop veterans, there is an inevitable fondness for nipping and tucking away the signs of their advancing years and inviting audiences into a huge suspension of disbelief – for a moment it can once more be 1956, or 1967, or 1989 …
Now and again, though, an occasion arrives that decisively reminds us how old post-Elvis popular culture now is – 5 October is the 50th birthday of the Beatles' first single, released back when Harold Macmillan was the PM, and the Cuban missile crisis was only weeks away.
"Love Me Do" sounds like the world in which it was made: tentative, still feeling the pinch of post-war austerity. Ian MacDonald's wonderful song-by-song history of the group, Revolution in the Head, reckoned that the song's "modal gauntness" is subtly cunning, serving notice of the Beatles' "unvarnished honesty", and – via John Lennon's wailing harmonica part – the "blunt vitality" of their native Liverpool. In the surviving Beatles' own account, the huge Anthology, Paul McCartney recalls that the song was meant to sound hard and authentic: "blues" rather than "la de da de la".
Many Beatles books barely mention "Love Me Do" at all. But there it is: a number 17 hit, long rumoured to have been propelled into the charts thanks to bulk-buying by manager Brian Epstein. If, like me, one of your first experiences of Beatles music was the collection 1962-66 (known as "The Red Album", as against 1967-70 "The Blue Album"), you will probably have experienced it as a strangely muted opening to a listening experience that quickly flared into spectacular life: a prologue, rather than a first chapter proper.
Beatles, The Beatles Anthology
The Beatles' second single, "Please Please Me", was released in January 1963, in the midst of a legendarily biting British winter, to which its giddy sound was an antidote. "Congratulations, Gentlemen, you've just made your first number one," said their producer, George Martin. And he was right. By early the following year, their songs were crowding the US charts, and they were about to play to 73 million Americans onThe Ed Sullivan Show. Once again, they were adopted as a panacea for cold and grim times – this time less a matter of the weather than the pall cast by the murder of President Kennedy. Only two years later, they would reach the apex of their fame, chased around the Deep South by fundamentalist Christians outraged by John Lennon's claim that they were "bigger than Jesus", while their music took on the textures and expanded horizons traceable – at least in part – to Lennon and George Harrison's use of LSD.
Such is the remarkable pace of a story that has been told by scores of writers, a story about four young musicians but no end of other things: the cities of Liverpool, Hamburg and London; class, and the shaking of English hierarchies; pop's transmutation into a global culture; and the western world's passage from a world still defined by the second world war and its aftermath, to the accelerated modernity we know today. Everything in the tale pulses with significance and drama. It seems barely believable, and in the best Beatles books, it still burns.
Philip Norman's Shout! was first published in 1981, and remains a glorious example of how to write about music, while also writing about much more. Of the Beatles in the mid-1960s, and their phenomenal success a mere three years or so after "Love Me Do" appeared, he wrote this:
"Only in ancient times, when boy emperors and pharaohs were clothed, even fed with pure gold, had very young men commanded an equivalent adoration, fascination and constant, expectant scrutiny. Nor could anyone suppose that to be thus – to have such youth, and wealth, such clothes and cars and servants and cars – made for any state other than inconceivable happiness. For no one since the boy pharoahs … had known, as the Beatles now knew, how it felt to have felt everything, done everything, tasted everything, had a surfeit of everything; to live on that blinding, deadening, numbing surfeit which made each, on bad days, think he was ageing at twice the usual rate."
Thanks to an obsession that began when a babysitter played me a Beatles record around the time of my fifth birthday, I own 67 books about the band (before I wrote this article, I counted them). They range from the crass and moronic, via the comically arcane, to the serious and brilliant. Among them, there is an American volume titled The Walrus Was Paul, all about the insane late 60s conspiracy theory in which McCartney had been dead since 1966 and secretly replaced by a doppelganger. If I'm feeling really masochistic, I occasionally pick up The Day John Met Paul, an absurd and thoroughly speculative minute-by-minute account of the day in 1957 when Lennon first encountered McCartney at a church fete.
I treasure an American hardback of The Longest Cocktail Party, the memoir of a long-lost American called Richard DiLello, who worked for the Beatles' doomed and decadent Apple company as a PR assistant and "house hippy". And at least once a year, I reread Barry Miles's Many Years From Now, an account of McCartney's 60s that, thanks to voluminous input from its subject, reads more like a memoir, and a brittle one at that. Every few pages, McCartney decides to pick a Lennon-McCartney composition, and then specify each of their contributions: "In My Life", long assumed to be Lennon's work alone, was "my melody … my guitar riff"; when it comes to "Ticket to Ride", "because John sang it, you might have to give him 60% of it."
That book was a transparent response to the posthumous Lennon industry, the most compelling product of which is Lennon Remembers, the full transcript of the 1970 interview he granted to the founder of Rolling Stone magazine, Jann Wenner. Lennon Remembers is defined by the bitterness and candour of a mind trying to make sense of Norman's "deadening surfeit", lashing out at former colleagues and associates, and describing the distance between the good clean fun portrayed by just about every newspaper journalist who travelled with them, and what actually happened. "When we hit town, we hit it," he told Wenner. "We were not pissing about. There's photographs of me crawling about in Amsterdam on my knees, coming out of whorehouses and things like that. And people saying [cheerfully]: 'Good morning, John.'"
Hunter Davies, The Beatles: The Authorised Biography
At the time the interview happened, there were only two Beatles books of any quality. Hunter Davies's authorised biography was published in 1968, admirably researched and brimming with access – but stymied by his artless prose, and the constraints of being the band's in-house writer. There was also the Penguin paperbackLove Me Do: The Beatles' Progress, written by the New Yorker Michael Braun through 1963 and early 1964. "That was a true book," Lennon told Wenner. "He wrote about how we were, which was bastards … You have to be a bastard to make it, man. That's a fact, and the Beatles were the biggest bastards on earth."
Braun was a former assistant to Stanley Kubrick, and a writer whose work appeared in the Observer and the Sunday Times (he died in 1997; one of his obituaries described him as "a penniless flâneur", drawn to people whose "personal mythology was not limited by prosaic biographical fact"). Contrary to Lennon's picture, his book – a tour diary, essentially, which follows them around provincial England, on to Paris and New York – largely offers a close-up of the Beatles as you might expect it: witty, blunt, quickly breaking out of the drab conventions of British showbiz.
He evokes ordinary places witnessing quite extraordinary scenes, in incisively simple terms: in the north-east of England, for example, he keeps the Beatles company in yet another hotel, watching them do a phone interview with a DJ in far-away Melbourne, while a gaggle of fans looks up at the window. "When the call was finished," Braun wrote, "they turned the lights out and spent a few minutes looking at the girls through a slit in the curtains before going to bed. The next morning as the Beatles left Sunderland several girls were still gathered in front of the hotel, huddling against the winds blowing from the North Sea." This is what is so compelling about those early treks around provincial theatres and ballrooms: moments of quiet, when the band seemed to marvel at what was happening to them; and the sense of an extended goodbye (by the autumn of 1966, they had stopped touring altogether).
Davies's book pushed an approved vision of unbroken brotherhood just as the Beatles began to come to grief. There was then a period of publishing quiet, until in the wake of Lennon's murder in 1980, Hamish Hamilton published Shout!, and thereby planted the seed of serious Beatles biography and commentary – arguably, of serious writing about pop in general. Shout! predated Stanley Booth's equally accomplishedThe True Adventures of the Rolling Stones by three years, and Robert Shelton's flawed Dylan biography No Direction Home by five. Perhaps because its triumph lies less in its evocation of the music than its sure grasp of how amazing the Beatles story was, and how important they were as representatives of their age, it has rather been passed over by music writers – but it is a great book.
A couple of years ago, I spoke to Norman about the task he had faced. "The idea of writing a proper book that happened to be about a pop group … no one had really tried it," he said. "And it's a very hard thing to do. You're dealing with so much dross: you have to say things like: 'The record went to number three in the charts.' How do you say that in a literate sentence? Also, relating what happened to a performer to what was happening in the world is difficult to do, without sounding ridiculous. You skate a line between treating your subject-matter seriously, and ridiculously over-seriously. English writers tend to be flippant; American writers can be almost funereal."
Shout! arrived just as rock's golden years became distant enough to be properly considered (Norman's biographies of the Rolling Stones, Elton John and Lennon were to follow). In its wake came a trickle of Beatles books, until another game-changing work appeared in 1994: Revolution in the Head, a triumph of musical and cultural scholarship. MacDonald was an alumnus of the New Musical Express but was no rock hack; he had already published The New Shostakovich.
Revolution in the Head is one of those books that can be reread endlessly. I tend to pick it up at least every couple of months, alight on its analysis of Beatles songs to which I haven't listened for a while, and then go to the music. Even comparative makeweights are rigorously examined, and so given renewed allure: "Things We Said Today" is built from "strident dramatic contrasts"; "Hey Bulldog" is "menacingly pointed (possibly at McCartney)"; more straightforwardly, Harrison's "Old Brown Shoe" is praised as "an archetypal B-side from an era when B-sides were worth flipping a single for". All of it only underlines what a loss MacDonald was to writing: after a long spell of depression, he killed himself in August 2003.
Ian MacDonald, Revolution in the Head: The Beatles' Records and the Sixties
Fortuitously, Revolution in the Head arrived in the first phase of so-called Britpop, when worship of the Beatles became almost compulsory. Books about them began appearing by the dozen – often cheap, nasty and pointless.
There are, thankfully, exceptions. Thanks to a tip from the writer Jon Savage, I now own Magic Circles: The Beatles in Dream and History by the self-styled "independent scholar" from Brooklyn Devin McKinney. Stylistically, it takes its lead from the Rolling Stone writer and pop theorist Greil Marcus. McKinney's book is often maddening and silly, but when he's good, he's very good. Of the Beatles' output in 1966, he writes: "Virtually every piece of music they put their hands to this year comes out in some way twisted, acerbic, jagged." That year's Revolver, he says, was "the first Beatle album to find itself in the dark, not the light".
When the band covered material by American rock'n'rollers, the key to what made their versions different was this: "They were interested in stripping a song to its parts, exposing its frame, then retooling it with what was theirs: a group dynamic, a oneness of instruments and voices that made four discrete noises into one great noise, a syncopation of chaos; and a driving quality of hysteria." That captures well the Beatles' renditions of songs by Little Richard and Chuck Berry, but it also sums up the 100mph brilliance of such watershed records as "She Loves You" and "I Want To Hold Your Hand" – all energy and irresistible joy.
Now, two more significant, serious works are on the way: an anthology of John Lennon's letters, edited by Hunter Davies, and the first of a three-volume biography of the band by Mark Lewisohn, the Beatles expert responsible for two consummate reference books: The Complete Beatles Recording Sessions, and the even more exhaustive Complete Beatles Chronicle, a day-by-day account of their career, full of descriptions of their pharaonic lives.
Lewisohn has been working on volume one of his biography for close to a decade: he, his agent and his publisher will say very little about when it will be published, though there are reliable indications that it will appear next year.
Its author, incidentally, is present and correct in Shout!, as a Beatles-fixated eight-year-old in his native Pinner – a reminder that as well as endlessly sparking the intellect, Beatles music works more basic wonders. Page 78 portrays Lewisohn at home in 1967, listening to the album which confirmed that in the five years since the release of "Love Me Do", the Beatles and their art had been transformed: as Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band blared from indoors, he "stood in the garden as it played, shaking his head wildly while trying not to dislodge the cardboard moustache under his nose".
The Beatles in London, 1965
The Beatles in London, 1965. Photograph: © Jerry Schatzberg/Corbis