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A new book about Beatles producer George Martin explores the tensions surrounding the recording of the band’s classic track “Hey Jude,” which took place 50 years ago this month. Sound Pictures: The Life of Beatles Producer George Martin — The Later Years, 1966-2016 is Kenneth Womack’s second title about Martin; it will be published on Sept. 4.

In an excerpt provided to Variety, Womack detailed the events of late July and early August 1968. Martin recalled, “I thought that we had made [“Hey Jude”] too long. It was very much a Paul [McCartney] song, and I couldn’t understand what he was on about by just going round and round the same thing.”
He remained concerned about the track running to seven minutes and 11 seconds. “In fact,” Martin remembered, “after I timed it, I actually said ‘You can’t make a single that long,’ I was shouted down by the boys – not for the first time in my life – and John [Lennon] asked, ‘Why not?’ I couldn’t think of a good answer, really, except the pathetic one that disc jockeys wouldn’t play it.”
Lennon countered, “They will if it’s us.”
George Harrison remembered McCartney’s rejection of the suggestion that a guitar part should mimic the vocal melody, and noted it wasn’t a new situation. “Personally, I’d found that for the last couple of albums, the freedom to be able to play as a musician was being curtailed – mainly by Paul,” Harrison said later. “Paul had fixed an idea in his brain as to how to record one of his songs. He wasn’t open to anybody else’s suggestions.”

“Hey Jude” went on to sell over two million copies in its first month of release, holding the Billboard No. 1 position for nine weeks, making it not only the Beatles’ longest-topping single, but the longest-playing single to reach the top.




USA … H E R E.

UK …. H E R E.


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Rare memorabilia from a 1964 appearance by the Beatles on the “Ed Sullivan Show” in Miami Beach is up for auction.

Boston-based RR Auction is hosting the online sale of memorabilia from the collection of Jane Sollogub, who served as president of the South Florida chapter of the official Beatles fan club when she was 15.
A week after the Beatles made their first U.S. television appearance on the “Ed Sullivan Show” in New York, the Fab Four traveled to Miami Beach for an encore performance, this time at the Deauville Hotel.

Sollogub, who was interning at a Miami radio station at the time, was invited to attend the rehearsal and live broadcast. That’s how she got John Lennon’s autograph in the hotel elevator and took several photos of the British band. Among the memorabilia being auctioned off is an original ticket stub for the Feb. 16, 1964, rehearsal. Also being auctioned are a hotel memo pad with Lennon’s ballpoint pen-scribed signature and candid black-and-white photos of the band at the hotel and performing on stage.

Online bidding closes Thursday evening.



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It all started on July 6, 1964 at the London Pavilion when the The Beatles’ big screen debut, A Hard Day’s Night, held its gala premiere. When the shrieks and screams finally ended that evening, The Fab Four had officially crossed the threshold from music giants to movie stars. The film went on to gross over $11 million worldwide by the end of the 1960s (roughly $85 million in 2018 dollars) and that figure doesn’t account for numerous re-releases throughout the years.

Despite the overwhelming success of that first Beatles film it’s a safe guess that no one in attendance that July evening could have predicted that John, Paul, George, and Ringo would still be making an impact on the movie business more than fifty years later.

Fast forward to this past weekend when a 4K restored version of The Beatles’ 1968 animated film Yellow Submarine hit select theaters to celebrate the film’s 50th anniversary. The movie’s return to the big screen was an instant success as Beatles fans of all ages and demographics either took a jaunt down memory lane or experienced the psychedelic Fab Four and the evil Blue Meanies for the first time.

While many theater owners crossed their collective fingers that this nostalgia trip would be a success, they weren’t quite ready for sold out auditoriums and the communal atmosphere in the 200 screens that distributor Abramorama selected for opening weekend. Indeed, grosses for the film were higher in many of those 200 cinemas than for any of the films from the Hollywood studios that were playing in the complex. A point to remember is these grosses came from only one show.

Exhibitors reported impromptu audience sing-alongs, especially during the film’s closing track, All Together Now, which features the only on-screen appearance by the band. The distributor is planning an expansion of the film throughout August and is also mapping out plans for a full-fledged sing-along version later in the year. That announcement is certain to delight hardcore Beatlemaniacs, including the man who attended one of the screenings in the UK over the weekend dressed in a Blue Meanie outfit.

This is the third time that Abramorama has worked with The Beatles’ Apple Corp and Universal Music on film projects focusing on the group. In addition to a re-release of 2003’s Concert For George, the distributor enjoyed Stateside success with 2016’s Eight Days A Week: The Touring Years.

Abramorama President Richard Abramowitz explains the company’s partnership with The Beatles by saying:
When we’re charged with marketing and distributing one of their films, we are highly selective in choosing the venues in order to ensure the best possible experience. It seems somehow discordant to refer to The Beatles as a ‘brand’ because our connection to them is so elemental. In some sense, though, they really are one of the best brands in the world. Our job, I would almost call it a mission, is to be respectful of that at all times, in all ways.
While one-night-only events such as Yellow Submarine, along with Event Cinema programming from companies like Fathom Events, aren’t a huge percentage of theater owners’ box office revenue they do fill an important void by providing quality entertainment during off times (generally matinees and weeknights) where studio titles are playing to well below capacity. When, as mentioned earlier, revenue from screenings like Yellow Submarine are the highest of the day for cinema owners, that results in a significant contribution to their bottom lines.

Why do The Beatles remain relevant 50 years later? Far from settling into comfortable retirement somewhere in the Swiss Alps, the two living band members are still recording and touring. Ringo Starr is midway through his latest All Starr Band Tour and Paul McCartney’s tour in support of his first new album in five years kicks off September 16th in Quebec City. His recent appearance on James Corden’s Carpool Karaoke was an internet sensation, garnering nearly 27 million views on YouTube .
The fact that the band has remained as vibrant and important as they were 50 years ago is not only a testament to the music but also to the desire of the remaining members to remain connected with their fans. That respect for The Beatles’ still loyal legion of followers translates to every medium the band is involved with. There will even be a graphic novel based on the movie this fall.



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Wednesday 5th December – Stadthalle, Vienna, Austria


“I can’t believe it’s been five years since our last concert in Austria. We are really excited to be returning for what should be an extra special night. We’ve got so many great memories of Austria and we know we’ll make some more this year. The audience have always been so welcoming and up for rocking out with us. Get ready for another big night of partying.” – Paul

PAULMcCARTNEY.COM AUSTRIA PRESALE INFORMATION: pre-sale tickets will be available from 9am (CET / 8am GMT) Wednesday 18th July. FULL DETAILS COMING SOON. This show will be Paul’s first live show in Austria in five years. In 2013 Paul visited as part of his ‘Out There’ world tour.

The ‘Freshen Up’ tour will begin in Canada in September for four shows before heading to the US for Paul’s headline performance at the 17th annual Austin City Limits festival in October. The tour will then head to Europe in December and Paul will finish the year with concerts in the UK. The ‘Freshen Up’ tour will also be Paul’s first outing following the release of his brand new studio album, Egypt Station, out September 7th on Capitol Records.


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The U.S. Postal Service revealed on Dec. 12, 2017 that John Lennon would be the latest addition to its Music Icons series, with a stamp featuring the late Beatle. In their announcement, the USPS noted that the newest stamp: “honors singer and songwriter John Lennon (1940–1980), a rock ’n’ roll hero successful both as a founding member of the Beatles and as a solo artist.”

On July 10, the USPS shared details of the dedication ceremony to be held Sept. 7 at 11 a.m. in New York City’s Central Park at the Naumburg Bandshell, which is mid-park at 71 St., within minutes of his longtime home at the Dakota at Central Park West and W. 72 St. The ceremony, to be officiated by Postmaster General and CEO Megan J. Brennan, is free to attend and is open to the public.
The Bandshell is a short walk away from Central Park’s Strawberry Fields, the living memorial to Lennon, officially dedicated on Oct. 9, 1985, the 45th anniversary of his birth.

On May 10, the USPS unveiled new artwork for the Lennon stamp, part of the Forever series. The stamp features a photograph of Lennon taken by noted rock-and-roll photographer Bob Gruen in August 1974. Taken on the rooftop of Lennon’s Manhattan apartment, the photograph is part of a series of images taken by Gruen during the photo session for Lennon’s 1974 album Walls and Bridges.
From the original announcement: “The original black-and-white photograph has been treated in gradations of color: from yellow orange to red in the top row, from red to light purple in the second row, from light purple to dark purple in the third row and from dark purple to blue in the bottom row. Lennon’s signature appears at the top of the stamps. ‘USA,’ the peace symbol, and the Forever denomination appear along the bottom.
“The stamp pane is designed to resemble a vintage 45 rpm record sleeve. One side of the pane includes the stamps and brief text about Lennon’s legacy, with the image of a sliver of a record seeming to peek out the top of the sleeve.“This black-and-white photograph of Lennon seated at his white piano appears on the reverse side of the stamp pane, along with Lennon’s signature and the Music Icons series logo.“Taken by photographer Peter Fordham, the original photograph was used to promote Lennon’s landmark 1971 solo album, Imagine.”

From the USPS: “The USPS launched the Music Icons stamp series in 2013. The selected performers for the series, representing diverse eras and types of music, are featured on stamps with panes that feature the Music Icons logo so that each issue is branded like a record label release. Each pane resembles the sleeve of a 45 rpm single, with the sliver of a record seeming to peek out the top of one side, and a full color ‘cover’ image on the other.”
The USPS has a detailed list of rules for stamp subject selection criteria which include:
“U.S. postage stamps and stationery will primarily feature American or American-related subjects. Other subjects may be considered if the subject had significant impact on American history, culture or environment.“The Postal Service will honor extraordinary and enduring contributions to American society, history, culture or environment.“Living people will not be considered at the present time. Beginning in 2018, proposals for a deceased individual will be considered three years following his/her death.”
John received his U.S. Resident Alien registration in 1976 and was told he would be eligible for U.S. citizenship in five years.