Dick Gregory, pioneering US comedian and activist, dies aged 84. Gregory’s son, Christian, said his father died late on Saturday in Washington, DC after having been hospitalised for about a week. He had suffered a severe bacterial infection. He is survived by his wife, Lillian, and 10 children.
In a varied career,Gregory briefly sought political office for mayor of Chicago in 1966 and US president in 1968, when he got 200,000 votes as the Peace and Freedom party candidate.
In the late 60s, he befriended JohnLennon and was among the voices heard on Lennon’s anti-war anthem Give Peace a Chance, recorded in the Montreal hotel room where Lennon and Yoko Ono were staging a “bed-in” for peace.
An admirer of Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr, Gregory embraced nonviolence and became a vegetarian and marathon runner.
US network PBS will begin airing the new 10-part series, The Vietnam War, directed by Ken Burns and Lynn Novick on 17 September 2017 and two companion soundtracks are to be released by UMe to accompany the visuals.
The Vietnam War: Original Score By Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross, will feature over 90 minutes of new, original music on 2CD and 3LP, written and recorded by Academy Award-winning composers (and Nine Inch Nails mainstays) Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross.
Also released on 15 September is The Vietnam War: The Soundtrack, which includes many of the iconic songs representing the era, including 38 tracks on 2CD chosen from the 120 tunes featured in the film. The soundtrack will include: The Beatles (“LET IT BE”) , The Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, Jimi Hendrix, Buffalo Springfield, Simon & Garfunkel, The Byrds, Otis Redding, The Animals, Barry McGuire, The Staple Singers, Cream and many more.
It was on their first ever world tour in 1964 that the Beatles were catapulted from England’s national sweethearts to global superstars. Stories of fans fainting and allegedly wetting themselves were common. Police cordons couldn’t control the throbbing crowds awaiting the Fab Four at each venue, and the band was successfully cracking the notoriously difficult American music scene.
“This,” Brian Sommerville, the Beatles’ press officer, grumbled during one particularly hectic New York press conference, “has gotten entirely out of control.”
Sommerville may have been witness to the madness but it was photographer Harry Benson who was right in the thick of it.
At the time of the Beatles tour Benson was a fairly unknown photographer. The tour job came about when, as he was en route to an assignment in Africa, Benson was reassigned to Paris, where he was to capture what Beatlemania looked like in France.
Benson would spend nearly two years on and off with the band, being too close to them, however, wasn’t on his agenda.
“They weren’t keen at first,” writes photographer Harry Benson of when he put the idea for this photo to the Beatles. “John said it would make them look childish, then he hit Paul in the back of the head with the pillow and it went from there.” “They were friendly, and I got on with all of them. “George and I even shared a room a few times. He liked the ladies that’s for sure!” he recalls in his book “The Beatles: On the Road 1964-1966,” which has now been rereleased by Taschen. “But I wouldn’t say I was close to them, nor did I want to be.”
When it comes to photography and your subjects, he writes, there is a fine line and he was not willing to cross it.
“My philosophy has always been photograph what you see, your photograph should inform, and then get the hell out.”
Benson would go on to photograph the likes of Michael Jackson, Elizabeth Taylor and the Queen. He has also photographed every American president since Eisenhower, and was was with Robert. F Kennedy when we was assassinated in 1968.
The Beatles had an incredibly loyal fan base. Stories of girls fainting at the mere sight of the band walking on stage were common, and the four would often get accosted no matter where they were in the world.
In 1966 Benson was sent to take photos of the fallout from John Lennon’s infamous “We’re bigger than Jesus Christ” comments in Chicago. According to Benson: “Lennon was broken, he was crying, and shattered, and the rest of the group wasn’t giving him much sympathy.”
Benson recalls how the band had become more “cynical, and were sick of touring. John turned to me and said: ‘We aren’t going to do this for much longer.’ Paul added: ‘Of course it’s going to stop, we’d look stupid jumping around on stage at 40.'”
Months later the band would play their final scheduled show. Benson writes that the two years he spent with the band were like none he had ever experienced, or would experience again.
“With most of my pictures I think I could have done better, but this was the perfect moment, it won’t happen again. I got it.” “The Beatles: On the Road 1964-1966” by Harry Benson, published by Taschen… H E R E.
Universal Music EnterprisesClassic tunes by Ringo Starr, Blind Faith and Paul Simon are included on a very special soundtrack collection featuring songs heard on the Emmy-nominated NBC drama series, This Is Us.
The 20-track collection, titled This Is Us (Music from the Series), will be released September 15 and will be available on CD and as a digital download.
Included on the album are Starr’s “Photograph,” Blind Faith’s “Can’t Find My Way Home,” and Simon’s “You Can Call Me Al,” as well as tunes by Badfinger, Stevie Wonder, founding Byrds member Gene Clark, Cat Stevens, and influential English folk singer Nick Drake. The record also includes a cover of the Little Feat gem “Willin’” sung by This Is Us cast member Mandy Moore. The show follows the fictional Pearson family through the years, alternating between the story of young parents Jack and Rebecca Pearson in the 1980s and ’90s, and their three adults kids — Kevin, Kate and Randall — in the present day.The first season of This Is Us will be released on DVD on September 12, while the second season will premiere on September 26.
Here’s the full track list of the This Is Us (Music from the Series) album:
“Death with Dignity” — Sufjan Stevens
“You Can Call Me Al” — Paul Simon
“Willin’” — Mandy Moore
“Can’t Find My Way Home” — Blind Faith
“Uptight (Everything’s Alright)” — Stevie Wonder
“The Calvary Cross” — Richard Thompson & Linda Thompson
“Watch Me” — Labi Siffre
“The Wind” — Cat Stevens
“Come Talk to Me” — Goldspot
“Blues Run the Game” — Jackson C. Frank
“If Only” — Maria Taylor (featuring Conor Oberst)
“Northern Sky” — Nick Drake
“If I Ever Was a Child” — Wilco
“Because of You” — Gene Clark
“Evergreen Cassette (Tape Mix)” — Goldspot
“Without You” — Badfinger
“The World’s Smiling Now” — Jim James “Photograph” — Ringo Starr
“We Can Always Come Back to This” — Brian Tyree Henry
“This Is Us Score Suite” — Siddhartha Khosla
Ringo Starr’s stage boots and George Harrison’s front door are among coveted Beatles memorabilia up for auction.
Some 300 Beatles collectibles are on sale through the annual auction at The Beatles Shop in Liverpool.
Two pairs of Starr’s shoes are for sale, including a pair he wore on stage in 1963. The size 7 black suede boots are expected to fetch between £4,000 (€4,400 approx) and £5,000 (€5,500 approx.) They are said to be worn but in good condition.
“The original Beatle boots were leather with a higher heel,” Ian Wallace from the Beatles Shop said. “As the drummer he was having to use pedals for the bass drum and the hi-hat cymbal and what have you, so he couldn’t use those boots.Instead he wore these suede ones, which were obviously more comfortable.”
The boots were given to a family friend by Starr’s mother and stepfather in the 1960s and they have been in their possession since.
The brown Cuban-heeled boots are expected to fetch between £2,500 (€2,745) to £3,000 (€3,300) as is a Japanese-style kimono.
The other lots in the auction include the front door of the home where George Harrison was born, in Arnold Grove, Wavertree, Liverpool.
A rare Cavern Club membership card from 1960 is for sale, as is a school music book signed by John Lennon with vintage school photos.
This, the 26th Beatles Shop auction, will take at the Liverpool Philharmonic Music Room on Saturday August 26, with a viewing day on Friday August 25.
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