Monthly Archives: October 2018

BBC 6 Music Celebrates the White Album

How many albums with a plain cover would be immediately recognised across the planet with just the words “The White Album”? A nightmare for the marketing team, but as ever, the ideas and wishes of the Fab Four fifty years ago were way ahead of their time. Respected, award winning actor Martin Freeman is a huge fan of The Beatles 1968 revolutionary work (which John Lennon regarded as their song writing zenith) and will provide enlightening, entertaining and surprising insights into it.
This special celebration will include in depth appreciation by fans, experts and critics.
Martin Freeman and Giles Martin will introduce and explain a sample of never before heard material from the album’s original fabled Esher sessions at George Harrison’s house.
Most importantly it will be a Listening Party for a double album from one of the greatest and most innovative bands of the time – all the original album tracks played, enjoyed and discussed over an afternoon with the finest commentators and contributors.
Back In The USSR is perhaps the greatest album opener. While My Guitar Gently Weeps, Blackbird and Good Night undeniably some of the most beautiful songs written in the 1960s and 70s. Revolution 9 would be most people’s first experience of electronic avant-garde experimentation.
With his thirst for knowledge and previous presenting experience on 6 Music and Radio 2, Martin Freeman is keen to dig deep into key tracks and will also hear about the Abbey Road recordings and production sessions with those involved at the time and with the new 2018 mixes.
Martin will look at the turbulent times of 1968 with archive illustrations and look at the era, reflected on the album, when peace and love started to evolve into something different. It was the year of the Apollo 7 beaming back TV pictures from space, Led Zeppelin’s first live gig, The Kink’s Village Green Preservation Society, the new Trojan Record label and a kiss between Captain Kirk and Lieutenant Uhura breaking new ground.

The show is broadcast at 3pm (UK time) tomorrow. To listen online go to

Rare first pressing of Beatles album Revolver to go up for auction in Lichfield

A rare first pressing of The Beatles’ iconic 1966 LP Revolver is coming up for auction in Lichfield.

The rare copy of Revolver by The Beatles

The rare copy of Revolver by The Beatles

The ground-breaking album, released on 5th August in the year England won the World Cup, is being sold by a record enthusiast from Sutton Coldfield through Richard Winterton Auctioneers.

The version has the rare XEX 606-1 matrix engraved between the run-off grooves on side two, signifying that it contains a different master of the LP’s closer Tomorrow Never Knows.

“This version has a longer fade-out with more prominent piano as the track draws to a close,” said Richard Winterton, auctioneer of TV’s Bargain Hunt and Dickinson’s Real Deal.

“By all accounts, the first copies from the production line were presented to each of the Fab Four. After playing his, John Lennon was unhappy with the final track and requested that the mix be changed or replaced, which it was as a matter of urgency.

“It is understood that these copies marked 606-1 were made for just a few hours before the instruction came to stop.”

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‘Helter Skelter’: The Story Behind The Song

Arguably The Beatles’ most visceral moment on record, ‘Helter Skelter’ grew from a bluesy jam into what’s been cited as the world’s first heavy metal song.

Preparing to record ‘Blackbird’ at Abbey Road Studio Two one evening, Paul McCartney warmed up with an early version of ‘Helter Skelter’. A light yet funky acoustic piece with a falsetto vocal, this nascent version sat at the opposite end of the spectrum to the screaming rocker that would eventually grace side three of The Beatles’ “White Album”.

‘Helter Skelter’ went through a number of incarnations as Paul sought to create the heaviest Beatles track yet. In an interview with Radio Luxembourg in November 1968, he talked about the song’s origins: “I’d read a review of a record, which said ‘and this group…’ it was about some group, I can’t even remember, saying, ‘This group really goes wild and they just stuck echo on everything, they’re screaming their heads off,’ and I just remember thinking, Oh, it would be great to do one like that, it’s a pity they’ve done it. It must be great, a really screaming record. And then I heard their record and it was quite straight, and it was very sort of sophisticated, and wasn’t rough and screaming and tape echo at all. So I thought, Ah, well, we’ll do one like that then. And I had this song called ‘Helter Skelter’, which is just [a] ridiculous song, so we did it like that ’cause I like noise.”


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At NYC gala, Ringo Starr presents Joe Walsh and wife with award for their support of addiction recovery

Joe Walsh and his wife, Marjorie, were among the honorees at the Facing Addiction with NCADD organization’s 2018 gala, held Monday, October 8, at Rainbow Room & Bar SixtyFive in New York City’s famed Rockefeller Plaza. Ringo Starr and his wife, Barbara Bach, who is Marjorie’s sister, presented the Walshes with the charity’s Humanitarian Award for their efforts supporting its cause helping individuals and families deal with the issues of alcoholism and addiction.

Prior to the event, Starr told ABC Radio, “Joe deserves [the honor]. I mean, Joe puts a lot of time in, more time than people realize, [supporting] Facing Addiction. So it’s my pleasure to be here to present him the Humanitarian Award.”

Walsh also spoke with ABC Radio before the gala, saying he felt humbled by the honor, while noting, “[W]e have almost an epidemic of addiction, across the board for all Americans.”

During the event, Starr and his wife took to the podium and discussed their own journey to overcoming addiction and alcoholism, as well as stressing the importance of helping others similarly afflicted. Joe and Marjorie then hit the stage to accept their honor. After a heartfelt, emotional speech by Marjorie, Joe opened up about how he became an addict and alcoholic, as well as his spiritual path to recovery.


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Unseen photos of The Beatles making ‘Help!’ are up for auction

The shots were taken on location in Austria in 1965

Previously-unseen photos of The Beatles on the set of Help! are up for auction, with the shots estimated to sell for up to £15,000.

The images were taken in 1965 on the set of the legendary band’s comedy-adventure musical, which was released that year. Help!‘s plot saw the band being chased around the world after Ringo Starr acquired a sacrificial ring.

Taken by German photographer Bernd Kappelmeyer on location in Obertraun, Austria, the 124 negatives show The Beatles filming scenes in snowy mountains. John Lennon is seen sporting a black winter coat, hat, and shades in the images.

The collection will go up for auction in Newton-Le-Willows, Merseyside on October 16. You can find more details about the auction here.

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Geoff Emerick obituary

Even if Geoff Emerick, who has died following a heart attack aged 72, had never recorded a note with the Beatles, his list of credits as a recording engineer and producer would be impressive, ranging from Art Garfunkel, Elvis Costello, Supertramp and Ultravox to Big Country, Mahavishnu Orchestra and Jeff Beck. He even engineered the demo tape by Kate Bush (produced by David Gilmour of Pink Floyd) that secured her an EMI recording contract.

But it was his work with the Beatles during their most frantically creative years that made his name. Having worked on numerous Beatles tracks at Abbey Road studios as assistant engineer, he was promoted to first engineer in 1966 at the prompting of their producer, George Martin, and his first job in his new post was to record Tomorrow Never Knows, for what would become the Revolver album.

A celebration of 50 years of Abbey Road and Let It Be Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra and The Bootleg Beatles Neil Innes presenter

Following on from their hugely successful tour in 2017/18, the award-winning Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra and the nation’s premier Beatles group, The Bootleg Beatles, join forces once again to deliver a Beatles experience like no other.
Experience two of the Beatles’ most iconic albums performed afresh in this special musical collaboration, adding a classical twist and performing beautifully arranged symphonic versions of these timeless classics, including masterpieces such as ‘Here Comes The Sun’, ‘Come Together’ and ‘The Long and Winding Road’.
The tour marks 50 years since the release of these final two albums – Abbey Road (released 26 September 1969) and Let It Be (released 8 May 1970), and will explore the journey to the end of The Beatles – celebrating the music of this era and the legacy that endures to this day.
Hosted by writer, comedian and musician Neil Innes, (Monty Python, Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band, The Rutles) this unique live staging will be an unmissable event for Beatles fans of all ages!

All concerts on sale Wednesday 17 October 2018

Liverpool Philharmonic Hall Thursday 26 September 
Liverpool Philharmonic Hall Friday 27 September Bridgewater Hall, Manchester Sunday 28 September Symphony Hall, Birmingham Wednesday 16 October
Royal Albert Hall, London Thursday 17 October
Anvil, Basingstoke Friday 18 October

Royal Concert Hall, Nottingham Saturday 2 May
Sage Gateshead Wednesday 6 May
Usher Hall, Edinburgh Thursday 7 May
Clyde Auditorium, Glasgow Friday 8 May

Tickets on sale 17 October!!!

Paul McCartney Remembers Longtime Beatles Engineer Geoff Emerick: ‘He Was the ONE’

Geoff Emerick, the Grammy Award-winning engineer and producer who was the Beatles’ chief recording engineer during their career, died Tuesday of heart failure, according to his manager William Zabaleta. He was 72.

While he worked with many artists over the course of his long career — including Elvis Costello. Badfinger, Supertramp, Cheap Trick and America, among many others — his work with the Beatles and the solo Paul McCartney stands apart.

Paul McCartney remembered his longtime colleague and friend in a pair of posts on social media and on his website today. In the social media post, he wrote, “Though the Beatles had many great engineers over the years, Geoff was the ONE.”

The statement on his website follows in full below:

Geoff Emerick (1946 – 2018)

I first met Geoff when he was a young engineer working at Abbey Road Studios. He would grow to be the main engineer that we worked with on many of our Beatles tracks. He had a sense of humour that fitted well with our attitude to work in the studio and was always open to the many new ideas that we threw at him. He grew to understand what we liked to hear and developed all sorts of techniques to achieve this. He would use a special microphone for the bass drum and played it strategically to achieve the sound that we asked him for. We spent many exciting hours in the studio and he never failed to come up with the goods. After The Beatles, I continued to work with him and our friendship grew to the point where when he got married to his beautiful wife Nicole, it was in the church close to where we lived in the country.

He came with me to Lagos, Nigeria to record my album ‘Band on the Run’. I remember arriving at the half-built studio with a handful of 45s which I played for him to explain what direction I wanted to take on this particular album. I remember asking him to make sure that the tracks had a lot of space and he was happy to deliver that. We kept in touch through the years and our phone calls or messages always gained a giggle or two.

Having seen him as recently as this year when he came to visit us at Henson Studio in LA, where we were putting the finishing touches to ‘Egypt Station’, he was his usual cheerful friendly self and gave me the thumbs up to the mixes we played him.

I’ll always remember him with great fondness and I know his work will be long remembered by connoisseurs of sound.

Lots of love Geoff, it was a privilege to know you.



Paul McCartney’s Austin City Limits Festival performance to be live-streamed this weekend

If you can’t make it down to Austin, Texas, this weekend for Paul McCartney‘s headlining set at the Austin City Limits Music Festival, you can enjoy at least some of the show from the comfort of your own home thanks to the event’s online live stream.

A number of other performances also will be part of the online broadcast, including fellow headliners MetallicaArctic Monkeys and Travis Scott. The stream will be viewable at and via the Red Bull TV app.

McCartney’s set is scheduled for Friday, October 5, although has the stream of his performance listed on Sunday, October 7, at 7:25 p.m. ET. Sir Paul also will be headlining the ACL festival on Friday, October 12.

The fest takes place October 5-7 and October 12-14 in Austin’s Zilker Park.

For more click here 

Geoff Emerick, Beatles Chief Recording Engineer, Dies at 72

Geoff Emerick, the Beatles chief recording engineer who worked on some of the band’s most seminal albums, has died according to his manager William Zabaleta. He was 72 and believed to have suffered a heart attack.

Said Zabaleta in a statement to Variety: “Today at around 2’o’clock, I was making my way back from Arizona to Los Angeles to pick up Geoff so we could transport some gold records and platinum plaques to our show in Tucson. While on the phone, he had complications and dropped the phone. I called 911, but by the time they got there, it was too late. Geoff suffered from heart problems for a long time and had a pacemaker. … When it’s your time it’s your time. We lost a legend and a best friend to me and a mentor.”

Emerick, born Dec. 5, 1945, began working as an assistant engineer at Abbey Road at just 15 years-old and, just a few months months in, was face-to-face with John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr in the London studio. He apprenticed and later worked on such early Beatles’ recordings as “Love Me Do”, “I Want To Hold Your Hand,” “She Loves You,” and “A Hard Day’s Night.” Later becoming the band’s chief engineer, he helmed “Revolver,” “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band,” “The White Album” and “Abbey Road” as well as the dual-sided single “Penny Lane”/”Strawberry Fields Forever.” 

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