Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Barry Goldfinger

August 22nd, 1964 saw the first Beatles concert in Canada, as they played one show at Vancouver's Empire Stadium that evening. Local station CKNW covered the group's visit extensively, beginning with the pre-show press conference and then broadcasting live from the concert.

Another radio station, CKWX, reported from the conference and the concert, including snatches of the opening acts. As the coverage illustrates, the crowd was completely out of control, and despite two interruptions (warnings from MC Red Robinson and press agent Derek Taylor), several fans were injured in the crush.

In the calm before the storm, Larry Kane interviewed Paul and George backstage prior to the show, and Paul taped a couple of promos for Peter and Gordon and Cilla Black's latest singles (both, not coincidentally, written by Lennon and McCartney).

Monday, May 30, 2011

So Haira

City #2 on the tour was Las Vegas, where The Beatles had to fight their way through fans as they checked in to the Sahara Hotel at 2:30 in the morning on August 20th, 1964.

After catching up on sleep, there was only time for some publicity photos with slot machines (brought up to their suite so they could avoid being mobbed in the casino) before driving to the Convention Center for shows at 4pm and 9pm. Backstage before the first house, Larry Kane interviewed Paul and Ringo about jelly babies, segregation, the Rolling Stones and James Bond.

August 21st saw The Beatles fly north to Seattle for a concert at the Coliseum; coverage of that day's events can be found in an earlier blog post.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Cow Hills

The tour kicked off August 19th with a concert at the Cow Palace in Daly City, just south of San Francisco. KCRA-TV filmed some of the show for a half-hour special; earlier in the day, they had interviewed fans at the Hilton Hotel. Also on the scene at the hotel was Jim Stagg, DJ for Cleveland's KYW-AM.

Meanwhile, inside the hotel, Paul and George sat for a taped interview with Hillard "Hilly" Rose of KCBS-AM radio. In 2008, Rose recalled the circumstances:

"I can only tell you that they held a press conference the evening of their arrival, and the recording was done the following day in their hotel suite at the Hilton. Many hotels would not house them because of the unruly crowds, but the Hilton was so large with so many entrances it worked for both parties. The story behind the interview is that they were NOT giving interviews. I was working for KCBS and felt it was worth the try. I phoned their tour manager at the Hilton. I am sure it helped that I was with KCBS and they felt beholden to Ed Sullivan for their great welcome on his program.

At least the tour manager was willing to listen to my pitch, which was that with all the unruly crowds at the concerts it was beginning not to be safe. I wanted the Beatles to do an interview telling the youngsters the Beatles wanted them to calm down and make it safe for others. He told me to hang on, which I did for forty minutes. He came back on the line and said incredulously, "You're still there?" He thought surely I would have hung up by then, but I had made the contact and I wasn't going to let go.

He told me to hang on a couple of minutes and I heard him phoning the Fab Four in their suite. He had to cajole them saying, "Yes, this is really important. Yes, I want you to do this." When he came back on the line to me, I got a room number, a time, and a special knock to use on the door.

I showed up at the appointed time, which I remember was somewhere around 3 PM, and all four were in their underwear lounging around. John and Ringo didn't want to do the interview, but happily Paul and George did. John was so annoyed he went into the bathroom and flushed the toilet continuously attempting to foil the sound. I was using a recorder that was unidirectional and blocked out peripheral sound, so it foiled his efforts as you can tell by the quality of the recording.

When I went outside the Hilton the groupies saw me with a tape recorder and demanded to know if I had seen THEM. With the straightest face I could muster I said "Are you kidding? No way." Otherwise they would have torn my recorder to pieces, and maybe me, too.""

Friday, May 27, 2011


From Winnipeg, The Beatles and company flew south to Los Angeles, landing around 4pm on August 18th. They would play the Hollywood Bowl a week later, but this stop was merely to pass through customs, stretch their legs, and hold an impromptu press conference in the Pan Am lounge. KRLA's Beatle-boosting DJ Dave Hull also recorded quick chats with each of the lads before they replaned.

An hour later, they landed at their final destination of the day, San Francisco. Local TV channel KCRA sent a camera crew to cover the arrival, during which the band put in a brief and dangerous appearance in "Beatlesville", a small fenced-in area in the midst of thousands of manic fans.

The day's second press conference, just as disorganized as the first, took place at the San Francisco Hilton. Afterwards, John and Paul spoke with Miami reporter Larry Kane, who would be covering the entire tour for WFUN-AM. At the airport, Kane had also interviewed evangelist Edwin Teaman, who was protesting against The Beatles based on remarks Derek Taylor had made in a Saturday Evening Post profile.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Ringo's Inimitable Glasses

The Beatles wrapped up July, 1964 with a visit to Stockholm, Sweden, and began August with a couple of concerts in Bournemouth and Scarborough.

On August 10th, ITV sent a news crew to Ipswich, where fans were queued outside the Gaumont Cinema. Tickets went on sale that day for an October 30th concert, part of the group's extensive Autumn Tour of the UK.

But before that tour, The Beatles had a long trip to North America in store. The marathon jaunt began August 18th, as they flew from London Airport all the way west to Winnipeg, Manitoba. The brief stop was merely for refueling before continuing on to California, but thousands of fans showed up to welcome the group to Canada, and TV reporter Bob Burns covered the event for local Channel 7 news.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Harry and Billy Zombie

July, 1964 saw The Beatles carrying out sporadic media appearances: they taped sessions for BBC Radio's Top Gear on the 14th and From Us To You on the 17th. On the 19th, they appeared live on ITV's Blackpool Night Out, appearing in a sketch and performing five songs.

On the 23rd, they appeared at the London Palladium's Night Of A Hundred Stars, participating in an aerial ballet, and playing a standard set of rock numbers.

Two nights later, George Harrison put in a live appearance on the panel of BBC-TV's Juke Box Jury, reviewing records by The Naturals, The Fourmost, Sounds Incorporated, The Crystals, and The Zombies, among others. After the broadcast, another episode of Juke Box Jury was taped for airing the following week. This time, Ringo Starr was a panelist, rating discs from the Dave Clark Five, Chad & Jeremy, Cilla Black, Sammy Davis Jr., and more. Sadly, the surviving audio recording of Ringo's appearance is nearly indecipherable.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Everything Seems To Be Right

With the London and Liverpool premieres successfully completed, A Hard Day's Night opened in British cinemas throughout the last half of July, 1964.

With positive reviews rolling in and the Beatles due to begin a tour in mid-August, anticipation for the film was high in the USA. Tickets went on sale in New York City on July 22nd, and in Dallas on July 30th. United Artists' radio commercials targeted teenagers and adults alike, and the movie did strong business throughout August and September across North America, complemented by the band's 25-city tour.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Threetles '64

One day in early July, 1964 (most likely the 11th), John Lennon left his bandmates in the lurch, requiring Paul, George, and Ringo to fulfill several promotional commitments on their own.

At the London Hilton, they were interviewed by Dieter Bröer for German radio. Closer to home, the new BBC Radio series Top Gear was set to premiere July 16th, and the Fab Three recorded some promos for their appearance on the first episode.

More significant was a lengthy discussion of A Hard Day's Night, used to promote the film in America on a United Artists open-ended LP to be aired as a half-hour program on US radio. Paul explains that John is absent because he's "gone down to the shipyards to have an estimate for a haircut." By that evening, John had caught up with the group in time to tape a TV appearance on Thank Your Lucky Stars.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Making Scenes

The Beatles had less than a week to rest up from their month-long World Tour before heading back to work, beginning July 6th, 1964 with the London world premiere of their film, A Hard Day's Night.

The next day, they taped a TV performance of the movie's theme song for BBC's Top Of The Pops. Immediately afterward, they filmed an interview for Granada TV's Scene At 6.30, discussing Ringo's 24th birthday and the imminent Liverpool premiere. Around this date, the birthday boy also chatted via transatlantic phone lines with Murray the "K" in New York.

A Hard Day's Night's northern premiere at the Liverpool Odeon on July 10th turned out to be a triumphant homecoming for the Beatles, as 200,000 fans emerged to greet them at Speke Airport, the Town Hall, and outside the cinema. Once again, Scene At 6.30 was there to cover the mayhem and film an airport interview with the hometown heroes.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Goodbye From A Pal

Four weary Beatles gathered at Sydney's Mascot Airport on July 1st, 1964, exhausted from a month of touring the Far East and Australasia and facing a full day of flights back to England.

As they waited to board their flight, the individual Beatles spoke with the Australian press one final time, including DJ Bob Rogers, and two TV crews. Another local reporter interviewed all four Beatles as well as fans bidding them farewell.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Your Tie's In My Drink, Sir

The Beatles' New Zealand tour continued with stops in Auckland and Dunedin, wrapping up in Christchurch on June 27th, 1964. The following evening, the group flew via Auckland and Sydney to Brisbane, Australia. During the flight, Ringo/George and John/Paul were interviewed in pairs by a reporter named Ted.

On the morning of the 29th, a press conference took place at the ironically-named Lennons Hotel. Afterward, Tony Macarthur, a DJ from Brisbane Radio 4BK, interviewed Paul and George. If you have a spare $10,000 to spend, you can hear the rest of Tony Macarthur's interviews from that day.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Beat Wellington

The Beatles made their first and only group visit to New Zealand on June 21st, 1964. That morning, they caught a flight from Sydney, Australia, to Wellington. Bob Rogers taped an interview with the band en route, discussing John's imminent reunion with his aunt Mimi.

When they arrived at the Hotel St. George, they filmed a TV interview, and all but Paul spoke with reporter Doreen Kelso, who had filed a report on the group's arrival. Two days later, with the first New Zealand shows behind them, they killed time in the hotel suite chatting with Bob Rogers (George was absent, penning a letter home).

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Beatlegmania Volume Three

Well, I've exhausted the supply of vinyl covered in the first two volumes of Beatlegmania. I have hundreds of discs left to post, including the full Beatles At The Beeb series, the SAPCOR titles, Lost Lennon Tapes series, Get Back Journals set, Deccagone singles, and much more.

The first two volumes are sold out, and less than 100 copies of Volume Three remain, along with a good supply of Volume Four. When Volume Three is sold out, I will resume the vinyl Beatleg posts. In the meantime, I will continue with the interview and spoken word recording chronology.

If you want to hasten the return of vinyl on this blog, please visit the Multiplus Books website and purchase the illustrated discographies. And please pass this info along to anyone you know who might be interested in the books. Thanks!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Sydney or Dave or Eric

The Beatles' Melbourne visit wrapped up with two concerts on June 17th, 1964, the last of which was videotaped for broadcast on local Channel 9 the following month. TV news reports out of Sydney and Canberra were tracking the group's every move by this point.

On June 18th, they flew into Sydney for a three-night stand. As it happened to be Paul's 22nd birthday, 2SM DJs Bob Rogers and Mike Walsh wished him well that afternoon in the group's Sheraton Motel Hotel suite. That night, they opened at Sydney Stadium, an occasion captured in the Cinesound newsreel Beatles at the Stadium:

Monday, May 9, 2011

File Under: Beatles: Volume Two

Trade Mark Of Quality, 1985

Exciting cover, huh? This was originally a single-disc follow-up to File Under: Beatles; then both discs were packaged as a double set. Here we have a cheap reissue of the second disc with a sticker declaring these sides three and four.

- Not Guilty
- Besame Mucho
- Catswalk
- Here We Go Again
- While My Guitar Gently Weeps
- Suicide
- Mailman Bring Me No More Blues
- Spiritual Regeneration/Happy Birthday To You
- The Inner Light
- Shout!

- I'm Looking Through You
- Strawberry Fields Forever (multiple takes)
- A Day In The Life
- I Want You (She's So Heavy)

Friday, May 6, 2011

Mad Melbourne

From June 15th - 17th, 1964, The Beatles (with Ringo reinstated on drums) performed two shows each night at Melbourne's Festival Hall. Early on the 15th, Brian Epstein saw Jimmy Nicol back to London at Essendon Airport; the two were filmed for one final interview wrapping up Jimmy's Beatle career.

Later that afternoon, John Lennon sat for a filmed interview at the Southern Cross Hotel, discussing A Hard Day's Night, his book, and Epstein's influence on the band's success. Brian was also interviewed that day for the Australian TV show People '64.

On the 15th or 16th, People '64 sat down with John for a chat, and on the 16th, they covered the group's balcony appearance at Melbourne Town Hall, following another reception with the lord mayor.

Thursday, May 5, 2011


Rock Solid Records, 1987

An odd hybrid from TMOQ. Side 1 is a copy of Hahst Az Sön's first side. Side 2 has a lengthy session for "I'm The Greatest" and a "Bathroom Window" rehearsal (also from Hahst). Disc two is merely a copy of Yellow Dog's LP The Real Case Has Just Begun.

- Two Of Us
- Don't Let Me Down
- Suzy Parker
- I've Got A Feeling
- Get Back
- Don't Let Me Down

- I'm The Greatest
- She Came In Through The Bathroom Window

- Window, Window
- I'm Talking About You
- Let It Be
- Piece Of My Heart
- Little Yellow Pills
- Great Balls Of Fire
- Don't Let The Sun Catch You Crying
- Suicide
- Dig It
- Act Naturally
- Two Of Us
- Strawberry Fields Forever
- Oh! Darling
- Get Back
- I've Got A Feeling
- Rainy Day Women #12 & 35

- Please Please Me
- One After 909
- Hava Negilah
- "River Rhine"/The Long And Winding Road
- The Inner Light
- I Want You (She's So Heavy)
- Let It Down
- Dig It
- Vacation Time
- Maybe Baby
- Crying, Waiting, Hoping
- Mailman Bring Me No More Blues

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Five Beatles

By June 13th, 1964, Ringo finally got the all-clear to leave the hospital and travel to Australia to rejoin his bandmates. BBC News reporter Ronald Burns filmed an interview with the drummer at London Airport as Ringo prepared for the lengthy journey, taking him through San Francisco and on to Sydney, where he touched down on June 14th.

At Sydney's Mascot Airport, Ringo chatted with 2SM Radio's Garvin Rutherford, and he and Brian Epstein filmed a TV interview. Then it was on to Melbourne, where ATN Channel 7 covered the arrivals of Ringo (from Sydney) and the other Beatles (from Adelaide).

John, Paul, George, Ringo, and Jimmy Nicol congregated atop the Southern Cross Hotel, waving to the thousands of fans mobbing the streets below. They returned inside where Derek Taylor presided over the world's first and only "five Beatles" press conference, although Jimmy was largely ignored by reporters.

Following the press conference, John and George were interviewed by Alan Lappin of Melbourne's 3UZ Radio, and Paul was interviewed for Australian TV's People '64.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Sam Houston Live

Control Records, 1986

Both 1965 Houston concerts, packaged in a simulated Capitol (or "Control") Records deluxe cover.

- Twist And Shout
- She's A Woman
- I Feel Fine
- Dizzy Miss Lizzy
- Ticket To Ride
- Everybody's Trying To Be My Baby

- Can't Buy Me Love
- Baby's In Black
- I Wanna Be Your Man
- A Hard Day's Night
- Help!
- I'm Down

- Twist And Shout
- She's A Woman
- I Feel Fine
- Dizzy Miss Lizzy
- Ticket To Ride
- Everybody's Trying To Be My Baby

- Can't Buy Me Love
- Baby's In Black
- I Wanna Be Your Man
- A Hard Day's Night
- Help!
- I'm Down

Monday, May 2, 2011

Mongoose Season

Following the less-than-fulfilling Hong Kong concerts, The Beatles gathered at Kaitak Airport on the afternoon of June 10th, 1964. Bob Rogers taped some interviews for his station, 2SM in Sydney, the city they were headed to.

Coverage of the events of June 11th, as they touched down on Australian soil in Darwin and then deplaned in Sydney, can be found here. The morning of the 12th found them back in a plane, winging their way west to Adelaide. Rogers taped more interviews on the plane, including a short chat with Jimmy Nicol, on his last full day as a Beatle.

At 1pm, the group congregated on the balcony of Adelaide's Town Hall to wave to a fraction of the 200,000 fans and curious onlookers who had emerged to greet them on the road from the airport into town. The amazing scene was recorded for Australian radio. After hobnobbing with the lord mayor, they held a press conference at their hotel prior to that night's concerts at Centennial Hall.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

On Stage In Melbourne And Washington D.C.

Wizardo, 1975

A pair of incomplete concert recordings, borrowed from earlier CBM albums.

- I Saw Her Standing There
- You Can't Do That
- All My Loving
- She Loves You
- Till Tere Was You
- Roll Over Beethoven
- Can't Buy Me Love
- This Boy

- Roll Over Beethoven
- From Me To You
- I Saw Her Standing There
- This Boy
- All My Loving
- I Wanna Be Your Man
- Please Please Me
- Till There Was You
- She Loves You