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Sgt Pepper Documentary on BBC Radio 2 Tonight.

Martin Freeman presents Sgt. Pepper Forever, which will reveal the revolutionary studio techniques used during the remarkable sessions dating from November 1966 to April 1967 and also examine the album’s huge impact on the history of music. They will feature ‘work-in-progress’ versions of Sgt. Pepper tracks – and the songs on the double A-side single Strawberry Fields Forever/Penny Lane, which were also recorded during the sessions – to illustrate the pioneering techniques used by The Beatles and George Martin.

This two-part documentary special features interviews with Paul, George, Ringo and George Martin, and in a new interview composer Howard Goodall talks about, and illustrates on piano, the musical innovations of the album’s songs.

Having worked with the original four-track tapes to create a new stereo mix of Sgt. Pepper for its 50th anniversary, producer Giles Martin (son of Sir George Martin) describes the innovative recording techniques used at the time and how he approached making his new version.

There will also be interview material with the album cover’s co-designer Peter Blake, Beatles press officer Derek Taylor, Tony King (George Martin’s assistant in 1967), Mike Leander (the arranger of She’s Leaving Home), poet Adrian Mitchell, DJ John Peel and some of the producers and musicians who were influenced by the achievements of the album, including T Bone Burnett, Dave Grohl, Tom Petty, Jimmy Webb and Brian Wilson of The Beach Boys.

Martin Freeman says: “Sgt. Pepper is the most celebrated album by my favourite band. These documentaries will shed light on how The Beatles, with George Martin, created a piece of work that marked a watershed for what a long playing record could be. It’s my absolute pleasure to help tell you about it.”.

Sgt Pepper Forever – BBC Radio 2 – 10:00 pm Wednesday 24th May – and online afterwards. http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b08qqgm0

The Beatles In Chelsea

During the 1960s, the Chelsea area of London was the most fashionable, and proved to be a magnet for the rich and famous to live, shop and party. The Beatles were no exceptions. Here are some of the many places the Beatles frequented:

We go down the Kings Road on our Swinging 60s bus tour. For more info see http://www.60sbus.london

 Royal Court Hotel ( Now Sloane Square Hotel)

This four star hotel, right on fashionable Sloane Square, was the hotel of choice for the Beatles on their many trips to London from June 1962 to the summer of 1963.

They first came here on June 5th 1962, in preparation for their first recording session with George Martin at EMI Studios, Abbey Road, the following day.

Chelsea and the Kings Road was already a very fashionable area and the Beatles had time to explore the boutiques, restaurants and bars that attracted the rich and famous.

The Beatles returned to the Royal Court Hotel in early September 1962, when they recorded their first single, ‘Love Me Do’ at EMI.

By early 1963, the Beatles had become nationally famous, especially after ‘Please Please Me’ reached number one in the UK charts, and their trips to London had to become much more frequent. Another notable occasion was when they came down to record the Please Please Me LP. They arrived on February 10th, ready to record the album the next day. But, rather than rest up in preparation for the recording session, they did an extensive photo session with Cyrus Andrews, in the hotel and around Sloane Square.  You can see photos from the session at http://www.multiplusbooks.com/630210.html

Ringo with a fan outside the Royal Court Hotel, early 1963

The Royal Court Hotel remained the Beatles London base until the summer of 1963, when they transferred to the President Hotel in Guilford Street, Bloomsbury.

102 Edith Grove

This was a student flat, rented by Mick Jagger, and also occupied by Keith Richards and Brian Jones. The Beatles saw the Rolling Stones play at the Crawdaddy Club in Richmond on April 14th 1963, and the Stones invited the Beatles back to their digs for a party afterwards. The flat was a typical student pad, and hadn’t been cleaned for months. However, the Beatles probably didn’t mind, because compared to their former digs, behind a filthy cinema in Hamburg, Edith Grove seemed like luxury! Despite the rivalry between their fans, the Beatles and the Stones remained friends throughout their careers.

Penny Lane in the Kings Road!

John Lennon came to the Kings Road in February 1967 – to shoot a scene for the Beatles ‘Penny Lane’ video! He was filmed walking past Markham Square, near Mary Quant’s ‘Bazaar’ boutique.

Chelsea Manor Studios 1-11 Flood Street

Chelsea Manor Studios opened in 1902, and has been used by artists, photographers and writers. It’s most famous photo session took place here on March 30th 1967, when the Beatles came here to have their picture taken for the cover of their new album ‘Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band’.

The Beatles arrived in the late afternoon for the album cover shoot, which was devised by an amalgamation of talent. Art-directed by Robert Fraser, designed by Peter Blake and his then wife Jann Haworth, and photographed by Michael Cooper. The look of the album, the colourful collage of life-sized cardboard models depicting more than 70 famous people on the front of the album cover and lyrics printed on the back cover, was the first time this had been done on an English pop LP.

For more on the album cover shoot, see http://www.thebeatles.com/photo-album/making-cover-sgt-peppers-lonely-hearts-club-band

Chelsea Manor Studios now holds luxury apartments.

A certain well known album cover

Granny Takes a Trip – 488 Kings Road

‘Granny’ was opened by Nigel Waymouth, his girlfriend Sheila Cohen and John Pearse, after looking for an outlet for Sheila’s collection of antique clothes. The premises had been acquired in 1965 and opened in December after Pearse, who was a Savile Row-trained tailor, agreed to join them. Waymouth came up with the curious name  and the boutique was featured in the famous ‘London – the Swinging City’ issue of ‘Time’ Magazine. Around the same time, Nigel Waymouth began to design posters and record covers under the name Hapshash and the Coloured Coat with fellow artist, Michael English. Their posters were used exclusively to pubicise concerts at the Savile Theatre, which was owned by  Brian Epstein.

All of the The Beatles are known to have shopped here, along with their wives and girlfriends.

It was, however, more famous for its external appearance(s), including the 1966 mural of a native American chief and the 1967 ‘Jean Harlow’ mural. Most famous of all is probably the 1948 Dodge saloon car which appeared to have crashed through the wall and onto the forecourt. The car was also subjected to colour makeovers – canary yellow and, most memorably, in black and gold with glittering stars. The Dodge feature was kept after the sale of the shop in 1969 until complaints from the local authorities forced its removal in 1971. The clothes, though of very high quality, were very high-priced and tended to attract an ‘elite’ clientele, which just added to its legendary status. . Pearse was unhappy with the increasingly ‘hippie’ image of the shop and eventually they ended up selling the business in 1969. The London premises at 488 closed in 1974, the name being sold to Byron Hector who opened a shop under the same name elsewhere on Kings Road, eventually closing in 1979.

Granny Takes a Trip 2

Club Dell’ Aretusa 107 Kings Rd

Opened by famed restauranteur Alvaro Maccioni, who teamed up with Apicella and Mino Parlanti (owner of the equally celebrated Borgo San Frediano) to open Club dell’Aretusa, a large members-only bar/restaurant/disco on the King’s Road. “Are you one of the beautiful people?” demanded Angus McGill’s double-page feature in the Evening Standard. “Simple test: Can you get in to the Dell’Aretusa?”

On May 22nd 1968, John Lennon and George Harrison attended a party here to launch ‘Apple Tailoring’ which was opening just down the road at 161 Kings Road. George was with his wife Pattie, but John was with his new girlfriend, Yoko Ono. They had got together just a few days earlier, and this was their first public appearance together, much to the interest of the gathered media, who kept on asking John ‘Where’s your wife?’ Ironically, George Harrison wore a jacket which he bought from rival clothes shop, Granny Takes a Trip (see above!)

George and Pattie Harrison walking to Apple Tailoring

 

John and Yoko walking down the Kings Road

Apple Tailoring (Civil and Theatrical) 161 Kings Road

Apple Tailoring, which opened on May 23rd 1968,  was the latest addition to the Beatles growing Apple group of companies – they already had a boutique on Baker Street.

The Beatles had known the shop for a while. Before their involvement, it was called Dandie Fashions. ‘Dandie Fashions’ was the brainchild of  John Crittle. He arrived from Australia around 1964, and  it didn’t take John long to get himself established amongst London’s young and hip in-crowd. A fortunate turn of events landed John his first real employment was at  ‘Hung On You’at 22 Cale Street, Chelsea, just off the Kings Road. It later became Jane Asher’s Cake Shop. It later relocating to 420 King’s Road.  John was  a designer and a fabric locator Owner Michael Rainey  was an already recognised aristocrat amongst the ‘Chelsea set’. This was expanded upon when he got together with, and married, London socialite, Jane Ormsby-Gore. It didn’t take that long before the intimidating ‘Hung On You’ became the shop of the stars. Rainey himself recalls: “When The Beatles and The Who started to visit my boutique, I knew we’d made it.”

John Crittle decided to set up his own boutique, and started ‘Dandie Fashion’ at 161 Kings Road in October 1966.  He also managed to secure the ‘Foster and Tara’ clothing designers for the business. Tara Browne was a well-known socialite amongst the in-crowd – being the heir to the Guinness fortune. Tara was interested in making his own way in the world, and when he moved from Ireland to London he also fell in with the young and hip from the arts and entertainment worlds. His interest in men’s clothing led him to starting up his own tailoring company, ‘Foster and Tara’. Tara had many friends in rock and pop, including Brian Jones, John Lennon and Paul McCartney. It is said that Paul McCartney took his first LSD trip with Tara.

Tara Browne was killed in a car crash while on his way to meet the team of Dudley Edwards, Douglas Binder, and David Vaughan, to discuss the design for the shop front. Browne crashed his Lotus Elan into a van parked in Redcliffe Gardens, he swerved so that he took the impact rather than his girlfriend, Suki Potier. This incident will forever be immortalised in The Beatles’ song, ‘A Day In The Life’. Tara’s untimely death also inspired The Pretty Things’ song, ‘Death Of A Socialite’.

Tara Browne and wife Nicky, as photographed by Michael Cooper

After the death of Tara Browne, John Crittle kept Dandie Fashions going, and attracted the likes of Jimi Hendrix, Roger Daltrey and Brian Jones, who all often bought clothes there.

John Crittle was also friendly with the Beatles, and in May 1968, The Beatles went into partnership with Critte to form ‘Apple Tailoring’. The purpose of this shop was to offer the discerning male customer a bespoke service, rather than the ‘off-the-peg’ service that was available at the Baker Street location. As well as this bespoke service, the basement of 161 King’s Road became a hairdressing salon, which was run by Leslie Cavendish. Apple Tailoring lasted longer than the Baker Street boutique but it too closed its doors in 1968. Apple Corps decided to withdraw from High Street commerce and handed the business and all the stock over to John Crittle. Crittle’s daughter is Darcey Bussell, former prima ballerina with the Royal Ballet, and now judge on ‘Strictly Come Dancing’.

John Lennon outside Apple Tailoring

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MY DATE WITH THE McCARTNEYS – from “the Times”

MY DATE WITH THE McCARTNEYS

From Today’s ‘Times’ Newspaper

Do you know how to work the washing machine, Sir Paul? Can I have a discount, Stella? Will you adopt me, Mary? Deborah Ross meets Macca and his girls to celebrate Linda’s legacy – and leaves wishing she could be one of the family

MAY 6, 2017 (Deborah Ross/The Times).- So, off to meet Stella McCartney (fashion designer), Mary McCartney (photographer and food writer) and their father, Sir Paul McCartney, who was once in some band or other, back in the day. (It may come to me.) I had previously been asked: did I wish to meet Stella and Mary and also Sir Paul, who was in some band or other, back in the day? I said, “Yes,” and, “You bet,” and, “Is Stella generous with discount cards if you suck up enough?”
So I was committed, prior to realising the proposed encounter had “poisoned” and “chalice” written all over it, as it would be strictly about the 25th anniversary of the Linda McCartney frozen food range, and Linda’s legacy in this regard, with any other subject being verboten. Also, it would be brief. (Forty-two minutes, as it turns out.) But I was determined to look on the bright side, as in: is Stella generous with discount cards if you suck up really, really quickly?

Armed with “Talking Points for Deborah Ross”, as helpfully provided by the PR people involved – “Paul, Stella and Mary continue to be heavily involved in the day-to-day activity of the brand …” – I make my way to the appointed venue, a house in Soho in London that belongs, I believe, to a friend of Mary’s. It is wonderfully stylish inside, all mid-century modern, but it is tiny, and when I arrive there is barely space to take a breath. The photographer and the photographer’s assistants are still knocking about. The Linda McCartney Foods PR is here, as is Paul’s press person. There are various factotums doing this and that and putting a lunch together. I ascend the stairs – out of the way, top-flight journalist with Talking Points coming through! – to find Paul on the top landing. He isn’t doing that thumbs-up thing – he is sometimes known as Paul “thumbs aloft” McCartney – but does have open arms and is saying, “Hello, Deborah,” which is nice, and superfriendly, and does makes me wish that, in return, I could think of that band. (It may yet come to me. Do you know it?)
They are a striking-looking family. Mary, 47, is darkly pretty. Stella, 45, is 82 per cent eyes. (And also pretty. I’m not playing favourites here.) Meanwhile, Paul, 74, has brown hair and looks fresh as a daisy in a crisp, white shirt and a deep navy suit, both by Stella McCartney. “It’s my new menswear,” says Stella. “He’s my male model.” They are all wearing Stella McCartney because, as Paul says, “We had our instructions.” I say to Stella that I apologise in advance should I happen to call her “Stelvis”, because I’ve a niece called Stella, who has always been known as “Stelvis”. “Why?” she asks. I don’t know. It’s a bit funny, I suppose. “Right.” Sometimes she’s also known as “Stelton John”, I could have said, but instead I opt for: “And are you still heavily involved in the day-to-day activity of the brand?” They confirm that they are. (I think I pulled that back, and still have, “Does the brand have exciting consumer-facing events planned for National Vegetarian Week?” up my sleeve.)
Some would say vegetarian food has evolved since Linda McCartney founded her frozen ready-meal brand, that it has moved on from textured vegetable protein and meat facsimiles, but I don’t know. If your household is non-meat and you come in late and tired, or your kids truck up with friends, what are you going to want to do? Whip some McCartney “burgers” out of the freezer or embark on an Ottolenghi featuring 72 ingredients, several of which you’ve never heard of? (Some of those recipes “run to five pages”, confirms Mary.) It remains the bestselling frozen-food range of its kind – sit on that, Quorn! – and I have to say that, when I cooked a load at home, to see what it was like, the “sausage rolls” went down brilliantly well. “People can’t tell the difference,” says Mary. “I think they are amazing. The meat in sausage rolls is so overprocessed. Is it really meat? Or just eyeballs?”
As it happens, I found a copy of Linda McCartney’s first vegetarian cookbook – Home Cooking, published in 1989 – knocking about my house. I know I have used it down the years, particularly the recipe for beetroot with dill and sour cream. “That’s Mum’s Russian-Jewish heritage coming in,” says Mary.
“Borscht,” says Paul, gnomically.
“Borscht didn’t even exist in this country at that time,” says Mary. “Or quiche. We didn’t have quiche in Britain in that day and age.”
“It depended what class you were from,” says Paul. “3A or 3B.”
“This idea,” says Mary, “that Mum took things people weren’t eating in this country and had the courage to write a book and be ridiculed.”
“It was for one reason,” says Paul. “She loved, loved, loved animals. People would see something a bit creepy, like a frog or something, and they’d go, ‘Ewww,’ and Linda would always say, ‘Its mummy loves it.’ ”
“And you can’t argue with that,” says Stella.
I put it to them that Linda was truly a pioneer, no question, but I am not convinced by the recipe for spaghetti omelette. “My kids love it,” says Stella. On the other hand, it could work, I add, really, really quickly.
Home Cooking was, in fact, Bloomsbury’s bestselling book until Harry Potter came along. But finding a publisher was not easy initially. Linda wrote it with food author Peter Cox, and as he is quoted as saying, in Philip Norman’s biography of Paul, “I went to see one woman who was supposedly a legend in the industry, and who always wore white gloves to the office. She told me a vegetarian cookbook couldn’t possibly sell unless it had some chicken in it.”
“That,” says Paul, “was the climate of the time. There wasn’t vegetarian food. There was one restaurant, Cranks, which Yehudi Menuhin was something to do with, and I always thought that was kind of funny, that he called it Cranks. It was kind of self-deprecating and I liked that.” Was it good? “I never went there as I wasn’t vegetarian then.” I guess we’ll never know.
I say the other thing Peter Cox said is that, throughout the writing process, he kept a copy of Jane Asher’s bestselling book on cakes to hand, so that whenever Linda’s attention flagged, as it was wont to do, he’d take it out and start flicking through it with great interest, and that brought her back into the room. Paul laughs and claps, while Stella says, “That is very funny … Would bring her back into the room!”
We then flick through Linda’s book while I comment on the dated photography, which makes everything look so … dingily brown. The “macaroni turkey” – a substitute for a Christmas turkey, sculpted from macaroni – looks especially worrying. “You had to make it because you couldn’t get a vegetarian turkey at Christmas,” says Paul. “It was great,” says Stella. I can now see it could be great, I say, really, really quickly.
And do you remember Linda writing it? “She would have Peter Cox round,” says Paul, “and quite often I’d be in the kitchen, because I was just there, and she’d cook something.” And then photograph it in brown? “And then she’d photograph it in brown.”
“Mum,” says Stella, “was instinctive in the way she cooked, and Peter had to stop her.”
“He’d say,” continues Paul, “ ‘Just before you put that in, let me measure it.’ ”
“I remember,” says Mary, “making a stew and thinking, ‘This tastes rubbish,’ and I phoned Mum and the extra thing was celery.” “Celery is critical,” adds Stella. “She would start all her soups with celery,” says Paul. “Mum and celery, it’s true,” concludes Stella.
Linda – who died of breast cancer in 1998 – was, indeed, ridiculed for her vegetarianism, as all the McCartneys have been. Oh no, here they come, the bloody McCartneys, banging on about not killing cows, and now fish, too. “At the end of the day, what people are forgetting to talk about is fish,” says Stella. “We need to be aware that fish is a stealth industry,” says Mary.
But they’ve proved themselves menschen, have kept at it, haven’t caved on their principles, or gone away quietly. “Almost a third of land is used for livestock production,” Stella might say. “Ninety-five per cent of soya is grown for farm animals,” Paul might add. “The reality of the conversation is that it has to become political,” Mary might further add.
But more and more people have come round to their way of thinking, which must be satisfying. “When I was a child and we said we were vegetarian it was a case of, ‘Why don’t you kill animals to eat them?’ I was the outsider, and you did meet a lot of aggression and anger. But now the landscape is changing,” says Mary. I ask if they’ve seen Simon Amstell’s Carnage, which puts the best case against meat-eating ever. Not yet, they say. You should, I say. They will, they promise. I can’t believe I had to alert you to it, I say. How have you all managed without me for so long? “I’m all for shadowing you and just absorbing,” says Mary. I’m busy, but might be able to fit you in for an afternoon, as a favour. “Thanks,” she says.
I am quite interested in Paul’s food memories. As a working-class boy from Liverpool, when did you first encounter an avocado, say? “I was in Soho,” he remembers, “and we went to a restaurant with George Martin. We were all slightly mystified by the menu and I thought, ‘I can do this,’ so I ordered an avocado pear for dessert, because I’m thinking pear melba, or maybe it’s going to be like stewed pears, and this sniffy Italian waiter said, ‘That is not a dessert, sir.’ I said, ‘Yeah, I know that. Just kidding you.’ I was about 21.”
“And your dad,” says Stella, “brought you back bananas, didn’t he? Because he worked in the cotton trade.”
“It was after the war,” says Paul, “when nobody had had bananas, and he brought some back and said, ‘Look! Bananas!’ We’d never seen them or tried them or anything, and we didn’t like them. He was annoyed.”
And was your mum a good cook? “Yeah, in the traditional way. I ate what everyone else ate growing up. There was no variation. You knew that if you went to a friend’s house it would be the same as at your house. Just like us, they would have mandarin oranges from a tin with Carnation milk. That was very well accepted.”
After you left home and before Linda, would you have cooked? “I lost my mother when I was 14, so there was my dad, my brother and me. My dad would drop into the Cavern where we were playing at lunchtime and he’d say, ‘Here’s tonight’s meal, son,’ and he’d leave me a few chops. I’d get home before him so I’d grill the chops and do mashed potato.”
“It’s always his job, the mash,” says Stella.
Are you competent in other domestic areas, Paul? Could you work a washing machine? “No, I can’t.”
“But,” says Stella, “you can hand-wash in a sink with soap.”
“When we were on tour you did do your socks, because they would get a bit smelly,” confirms Paul. “So before you’d go to bed you’d give them a good rub in the hotel sink, with the little soap, then rinse them out and hang them on the radiator.” I think he is referring back to when he was in that band, whatever it was.
They do miss Linda dreadfully. We meet just before Mother’s Day, and I think they wouldn’t have been willing to say how much they still miss her if I hadn’t mentioned it’s a hard time to get through when you’ve lost your mother, as I have, and there’s all this stuff in the shops. They do it because, much as I’ve been joking around, they are, clearly, kindly people. “You definitely notice it,” says Mary. “I also notice mums and daughters walking down the street and you know they are having a lunch or a shop and are having that little moment.”
“At the end of the day,” says Stella, “for a fraction of a second, I think I can’t believe Mum hasn’t called me today.”
“You did that recently?” asks Paul. “That’s normally the first year, when that happens a lot.
“A friend has just lost her husband and I was saying to her, ‘You think he’s going to walk in the door, don’t you?’ And she said, ‘Yes.’ ”
“You’re going to get me going,” says Stella.
“But look at Mum’s achievements,” counters Mary. “They are so relevant. The balls she had. I am so proud she left a legacy and that she is in each and every one of us.”
Stella adds that she gets it in the neck “for not using fur or leather in my career”, but she doesn’t care. Is grateful to her mother, in fact, “for giving me the spectacles that have allowed me to have a point of view”.
The PRs are madly trying to wind us up now so, as she’s mentioned her fashion range, I decide I’m just going to have to come out with it straight, so I do: can I get a discount? “Yes,” she says, adding, almost with a wink, “and Stelvis.” We’ve bonded. I’ve arrived.
Typically, I then push my luck. I could be up for adoption, I say to them all. I would make a good McCartney. I would bring my own celery. And I’d bring your Jewish quotient zooming back up. “My wife [Nancy Shevell] is Jewish,” says Paul. Decent cook? “No, bless her. When we married she was intimidated by Linda’s reputation, so she said, ‘I’m a lousy cook.’”
“She’s a very good orderer,” says Stella. “She is a very good orderer,” confirms Paul.
They’re half out the door, but time for one last question. Paul, were you in some band or other, back in the day? “Yes. The Quarrymen.” Were you any good? “Damned good. Great little band.” Never heard of them. Sorry.

Deborah Ross has since given up meat
A vegetarian lunch with the McCartneys

Linda McCartney’s pad thai noodles
Serves 4

140g rice ribbon noodles
Groundnut oil for frying
150g Linda McCartney’s Vegetarian Pulled Chicken
1 large free range egg, beaten (optional)
4 cloves garlic, chopped finely
4 tbsp vegetable stock
2 tbsp fresh lime juice
1 tbsp unrefined sugar
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp mushroom sauce (optional)
1 tsp sea salt
½ tsp dried chilli flakes
115g peanuts, chopped
450g beansprouts
3 spring onions, the whites cut thinly crosswise, the green sliced into thin lengths
2 limes, cut into wedges

1 In a medium bowl, soak the rice noodles in warm water according to packet instructions. Meanwhile prepare all the other ingredients so that they are to hand once you start stir-frying.
2 Heat 1 tbsp oil in a large wok. Add the vegetarian pulled chicken and cook for 7-8 minutes, adding 50ml water halfway through. Remove from the wok and set aside on kitchen paper.
3 Add 1 tbsp oil to the pan and heat until sizzling. Add beaten egg (if using) and lightly scramble. Remove from wok and set aside.
4 Heat a further 2 tbsp of oil, sauté the garlic, add the drained noodles and toss until they are coated with oil. Add the stock, lime juice, sugar and soy sauce (or mushroom sauce), toss well, gently pushing the noodles around the pan. Then add the vegetarian pulled chicken, egg, salt, chilli flakes and half the peanuts, turning the noodles again.
5 Add all but a handful of the beansprouts and spring onion. Turn for a further minute or two, until the beansprouts have softened slightly.
6 Arrange the noodles on a warm plate and garnish with the remaining peanuts and beansprouts, and lime wedges around the edge.

Linda McCartney’s Vegetarian Burger
Serves 4

4 Linda McCartney’s Vegetarian ¼lb Burgers
4 brioche buns
1 red onion, thinly sliced
4 pickled gherkins, thinly sliced
2 tomatoes, thinly sliced
4 slices cheddar or vegan alternative
Coleslaw, plus ketchup, mayonnaise, etc, to serve (optional)

1 Preheat oven to 180C fan. Place burgers onto a preheated baking tray and cook in the centre of the oven for 15-20 minutes, turning halfway through cooking.
2 While the burgers are cooking, lightly toast the cut side of the brioche buns on a hot griddle until slightly charred.
3 Prepare the onion, gherkins and tomatoes and place in small bowls ready to assemble.
4 Remove the burgers from the oven and top each one with a slice of cheese. Serve in the brioche buns topped with the sliced red onion, gherkins and tomatoes. Enjoy with coleslaw and your favourite sauce.

Paul’s family quesadilla
Serves 2

100g tomato purée
4 medium-sized corn tortilla wraps
120g refried beans
10g onion, sliced
20g jalapeños, sliced
30g mushrooms, chopped
80g mature cheddar cheese, grated

1 Spread the tomato purée evenly over one tortilla wrap, then spread the refried beans evenly over a second tortilla wrap. Repeat this process with the other two wraps.
2 Sprinkle the onions, jalapeños, mushrooms and cheese evenly over two of the coated tortillas. Place the other coated tortillas on top to create two tortilla sandwiches.
3 Heat a large nonstick frying pan to medium heat and cook the quesadilla for about 4 minutes on each side. It will be golden brown on both sides and piping hot on the inside when cooked.

Photos: Robert Wilson
Shoot credits Stella McCartney: Make-up Jane Bradley, hair Lewis Pallett

 

The Charts – 50 Years Ago Today.

The charts from 50 years ago this week – with ‘Release Me’ keeping ‘Penny Lane’ and ‘Strawberry Fields Forever’ getting to number one. It was weird further down too – with 2 versions of Charlie Chaplin’s ‘This is My Song’ at 3 and 4, ‘Eidelweiss’ at number 5, and ‘Memories are made of this’ by Val Doonican at number 20. This is right before the Summer of Love???

There was some hope in the chart as well though. Note the first chart entry of Pink Floyd, with their first single ‘Arnold Layne’ ‘Al Capone’ by Prince Buster, and ‘Happy Together’ by the Turtles making an appearance.

Strange Days Indeed!

 

Record charts, March 1967

 

10th January 1969 ‘See You around the Clubs!’ George Walks Out on the Beatles

January 10th 1969. The Beatles were rehearsing at Twickenham Film Studios for their ‘Get Back’ project. At lunchtime a row broke out and George got up, said ‘See you around the clubs’ and left!

John suggested The Beatles bring in Eric Clapton to take Georges place. That afternoon The Beatles carried on rehearsing, sometimes backing Yoko doing her screaching.

Sessions were then abandoned at Twickenham, and a few days later, a meeting was held with George at Savile Row. He agreed to come back only if the proposed big concert was dropped and session continued in their own Apple Studio, rather than Twickenham. The others agreed, and the project, eventually retitled ‘Let it Be’ was completed.

A Hard Day’s Star Wars!

Ever wondered why A Hard Day’s Night looks so good as a film?  Well, maybe one reason was the the head of photography was Gilbert Taylor, one of the UK’s top film men. He had just done a similar job on ‘Dr Stangelove’ with Stanley Kubrik, The cult horror film ‘The Omen’ – and later on a well known sci-fi film called  – ‘Star Wars’!

I was lucky enough to meet Gilbert in 2001 when the original cast and crew of A Hard Day’s Night reunited to contribute to the bonus disc of he DVD. He was a very nice man, and also hero-worshiped by the other members of the crew. Gilbert died in 2013, aged 99.

Here he is with Alfred Hitchcock, during the making of ‘Frenzy’

Gilbert Taylor with Alfred Hitchcock
Gilbert Taylor with Alfred Hitchcock