Binny Lum with (from left) George, John and Ringo in London in April 1964
The Beatles played 15 concerts in Australia in the winter of 1964.
In Adelaide, their cavalcade drew a crowd of more than 300,000 – their biggest ever crowd and approximately half of Adelaide’s population at the time.
Before they travelled to Australia and New Zealand, freelance Australian radio personality Binny Lum interviewed them in London.
Listen an unedited radio interview the young pop stars did with an Australian DJ before their Australian tour:
The full recording was donated to the NSFA by Lum’s daughter and has been released publicly for the first time in 2014.
The interviewer asks only a couple of questions in the whole 16-minute interview, letting the three mop-topped musicians (Paul was not there during the session) riff off each other.
Ringo is often the butt of good-natured jokes levelled by John and George during the chat.
They break into the song “Tie me kangaroo down, sport” several times during the interview and debate whether or not New Zealand is part of Australia.The interview is light-hearted and wanders from topic to topic.
On tape, The Beatles describe how they are deliberately dropping cigarette ash onto the carpet, joking that the carpet belongs to their manager and, “we don’t care, we bought it!”
The Beatles were already making millions by the time they arrived in Australia.
They were the hottest property in show business and magazines, newspapers, merchandise sellers and record shops all benefitted from their commercial pulling-power.
In the unedited radio interview, the three Beatles members can be heard thanking Australians for buying their records.
On the rare occasions the interviewer manages to get a word in, she marvels at Starr’s ongoing chattiness, saying that she had been warned by a publicist that he does not talk much.