For every Beatles fan old enough to remember, 8 December 1980 was a day of complete shock and sadness: John Lennon was killed outside his New York apartment building in the most horrific of circumstances. Just three weeks earlier, he had released his first new album in five years, and as interviews given at the time indicate, life was good and he was full of plans for the New Year. Devastatingly, those plans were obliterated by the actions of a disturbed gunman. For those who had grown up with The Beatles, it was like losing a part of themselves. Continue reading “Remembering John Lennon”
Music magazines frequently publish so-called ‘definitive’ lists of the 100 greatest guitarists, and you can usually predict which names will end up near the top. Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck… all deserving of their places, of course. But you won’t often see George Harrison’s name in the top ten, or even the top twenty, which is bizarre considering he was one of the all-time great guitarists and was part of the most iconic band in history. Continue reading “Dark Horse: Celebrating George Harrison”
I’m what you might call a second or third generation Beatles fan (I can never quite work out where the line is drawn). By the time I was born, two decades had passed since their break-up. This had one big advantage: it ensured that I would grow up with the internet, which gave me a place to indulge my obsession and connect with like-minded people from around the world. Visiting Beatles fan sites, participating in forums and chatting with others — some my own age, some older — who loved The Beatles as much as me, watching endless clips on YouTube (where else could you watch Paul McCartney making mashed potatoes?) and, of course, writing this blog… the internet has made it easy for us all to come together (pun absolutely intended) and express our shared interest. Continue reading “The Trials of a Millennial Beatles Fan”
This week I’d like to take a look at one of my all-time favourite Beatles ballads: ‘If I Fell’.
Written mainly by John Lennon, with input from Paul McCartney, ‘If I Fell’ is a track from 1964’s A Hard Day’s Night album and film. It’s yet another example of how good John was at writing ballads, even though some people have always considered him to be the ‘hard-edged’ Beatle. Continue reading “Song Spotlight: If I Fell”
This week’s Song Spotlight focuses on what has always been my favourite track from 1965’s Help! album: ‘The Night Before’.
‘The Night Before’ is the second song on Help! and was also included in the film. It was written by Paul McCartney, who sings the lead vocal, accompanied by harmonies from John Lennon and George Harrison. John also plays electric piano. Continue reading “Song Spotlight: The Night Before”
As it’s Halloween, it seems fitting to take a look at one of the weirdest elements of the Beatles story: the ‘Paul is Dead’ conspiracy theory. Although it originated way back in 1967, it endures to this day. In fact, since the advent of the internet, it’s probably become even more of a big deal, with countless websites dedicated to exposing the ‘truth’ about what happened. Yes, there are people who still believe that Paul McCartney was killed in a car crash and replaced by a lookalike. Continue reading “The ‘Paul Is Dead’ Conspiracy Theory”
This is the second part of a new series looking at some of my favourite Beatles songs. Last week the spotlight was on ‘She’s Leaving Home’, and now it’s time to take a look at what is arguably one of the most underrated songs in the band’s back catalogue: ‘Yes It Is’.
Written by John Lennon, ‘Yes It Is’ was released in 1965 as the B-side to ‘Ticket to Ride’. It was included on Beatles VI in the United States, while it can also be heard on the Past Masters release. Continue reading “Song Spotlight: Yes It Is”
Asking a Beatles fanatic to choose their favourite song is a bit like asking them to name their favourite time of day to breathe. It’s a hard enough question with most artists, so when it comes The Beatles, it’s a thousand times more difficult. So it may seem crazy to even attempt to write about my ‘favourite’ Beatles songs. Yet that’s exactly what I’m going to do, starting now. These posts will appear on the blog every Friday for at least the next few weeks. I’m starting off this week with ‘She’s Leaving Home’. Continue reading “Song Spotlight: She’s Leaving Home”
I read an article today which argued that the world should move on from The Beatles because they were always overrated — the usual, really. It’s an opinion I’ve heard many times, but what irked me about this particular article was the author’s claim that the reason for The Beatles’ enduring popularity is the ‘arrogance’ of the Baby Boom generation, who are apparently desperately clinging onto things which represent how much better they think their era was. And that includes The Beatles. Continue reading “The Beatles Are Not Just For Boomers”
Following our hectic day of Beatles sightseeing in Liverpool, Adele and I caught up on some much-needed sleep and woke up bright and early on Saturday morning for our first proper day of Beatleweek. Having picked up our wristbands and itinerary at the very fancy Adelphi hotel (where we unfortunately weren’t staying!) we wandered over to a venue called Alma de Cuba at lunchtime for our first event, Songs The Beatles Gave Away. Continue reading “The Liverpool Adventure – Part 2”