Just a quick ‘saw this and thought of you lot’ post. In honour of The Beatles Anthology albums being newly available on streaming services, Mark Ellen and Kevin Howlett recorded this short official podcast for a natter about them.
The so-called fifth Beatle has died according to a Twitter message by Ringo.
If true, it’s the sad loss of a great, great man.
The social media-averse may not have seen this, so I thought I’d share. Made me laugh my head off.
I see from the Uncut 200 Greatest Albums of All Time thread that the ubiquitous Pet Sounds continues to bestride the Best Album polls like a pop/psych Colossus.
Not everyone is in full agreement however, There follows a essay I wrote for the old blog which was sadly lost following the 48 Crash.
I hope it doesn’t cause too much offence to Beach Boys fans.
Now read on…
Surprised to see no mention of the fact that those loveable scamps from Liddypool are now available on Spotify.
That said, not quite as surprised as I was to see them on there at this point. I assumed that, as the rival Apples had kissed and made up, they would have appeared on Apple Music – the latest would-be Spotify killer.
Helluva coup for the Swedish streamers.
I’ll try make that a bit clearer. I bought the DVD of Help! in a charity shop yesterday and watched it that afternoon with The Light. She was astonished. She had no idea that there was such a thing as a 60s caper movie featuring The Beatles. She’s not a huge pop fan, but fully aware of the Fabs and their place in pop history but had honestly never heard of the film.
Have you ever been amazed to discover some piece of music history which everyone else thought was common knowledge, or enlightened someone else? Perhaps youve only just found out that there was a music festival in 1969 which was known as Woodstock, or had to explain to a mate that Morrissey and the singer of The Smiths are the same person?
Please forgive what is clearly yet another self-indulgent stroll down memory lane, but a couple of Afterworders have requested more details about my Beatles encounter of 1967. So here it is.
Now read on
Just read that today is George Harrison’s anniversary. It’s 14 years since he left us – which seems like no time at all really.
Got any favourite George clips? This is one that I’ve listened to a lot since his music arrived on Spotify last month. Sounds perfect now on a gloomy grey Sunday morning. It’s also, surely, a contender for worst solo Fab video. And that’s a crowded field!
The Abbey Road sleeve is one of the most powerful images in all of rock. The famous zebra crossing photo has been copied by countless artists from The Simpsons to Red Hot Chili Peppers to Sir Paul McCartney himself with his Paul Is Live album.
But how soon did this iconic record cover begin to attract imitators? Very soon indeed it seems. Abbey Road hit the shelves in September 1969 and as early as January 1970 a self-titled LP by Brett Marvin and the Thunderbolts appeared showing no fewer than 17 photos on the back cover mimicking the Fabs’ record. Despite the 50s rock & roll revival style name Brett Marvin and the Thunderbolts were actually an also-ran British blues boom outfit with jug band overtones. Just three months after release, I’m saying this was the first Abbey Road pastiche – unless you know different.
Meanwhile let’s see how many Abbey Road tributes/parodies we can come up with.
…or thereabouts. I have fond memories of the months of hype leading up to Free As A Bird and the Anthology series. In retrospect, the Fab’s timing was perfect: An upswing in all things Beatles from the Britpop Stars du jour; the nascent Internet had yet to consume the music business (so they could keep FAAB private and sell shed loads of double CDs) and George was still with us. The Anthology was a great showcase for previously unseen clips that are now only a YouTube search today, but more amazingly, there was Paul, Ringo & George… In a room… Together… with Macca still getting on thequietone’s nerves. I have fond memories of the whole enterprise & remain pro-Threetles.
We’re very keen round these parts to discuss “the greatest year in rock music”, whichever that may be on a particular day according to a particular person.
After reading extensive discussions about Lord Hepworth’s année de choix, I decided to check out 1971 in detail, which led me to compile my own chronology, which I then felt need expansion to encompass a couple of key years on either side. So I have ended up chronicling the half-decade from 1969 – the year the “Sixties” died, in more ways than one – to 1973, when Pink Floyd finally arrived on the Dark Side and Bowie killed Ziggy.
In the process of so doing, it became apparent that this was indeed a tumultuous period in the development of rock, pop and soul – even, perhaps, THE most tumultuous. The rise of Led Zeppelin to juggernaut status; the transmogrification of the post-Jones Stones; the redistribution of Cream’s constituent elements; the emergence of the solo singer-songwriter as a real force in popular music; not to mention the prolonged and painful dissolution of The Beatles and the reappearance of Dylan…
Moreover, I had the amazing realisation that many significant events which we normally view as » Continue Reading.
Like it or not there can be no doubting that Sgt Pepper was a game-changer. Nothing would be the same after June 1, 1967 as every pop band in the land, fuelled by too much money and/or too many drugs, clambered over each other to record their own version of the Beatles’ psychedelic masterwork. Most of them failed miserably of course but for those of us who were around at the time it was great fun watching them try. Later, when the dust settled, the phrase “this was their Sgt Pepper” took on new meaning and entered the language as a way of describing an artist’s best or most ambitious album. Fairport Convention’s Liege & Lief for example is often called “the Sgt. Pepper of folk rock”.
Let’s take a look at some of these efforts in a thread we’re calling “This Is Our Sgt. Pepper”
Please feel free to add your own examples
Tegan Work It Out Turlough Goodbye Everybody’s Got Something To Hide Except For Me And My Macra Devil In My Hartnell
This is inspired by listening to The Beatles “Octopus’ Garden” on @Dude From Atlantis thread “The Octopus Test”.
George’s intro is just so brilliant – sets up the song, totally memorable. Made me think of Jerry Garcia’s pedal steel intro to CSNY’s “Teach Your Children.
What other fabuloid improvised guitar intros do you love? I’m not talking about a riff that forms the basis of the song (eg “Whole Lotta Love”) – I mean something that is an invention of the guitar player but just sets the scene for the song perfectly.
It’s 1965. Really. You’re on a ski-ing holiday in the Alps, and are delighted to find the Beatles there too, filming their second feature film, Help. Okay so far?
You’re amongst a small crowd of spectators when a grand piano is lifted by crane above the boys for a Ticket To Ride sequence. As they prepare for the scene, you – and you alone – notice a rope around the grand piano fraying to a thread. You dash for the boys, knowing full well you can only push one of them out of the way of the falling piano.
Although it’s a tragedy that three Beatles were crushed to death, you achieve fame of a sort for saving the life one of the Beatles. My question is – which one did you save? And why?
Rules: Smartarse votes for any “Beatle” not John, Paul, George, or Ringo will be disqualified. Votes for any outcome other than you saving the life of one Beatle (and the consequent deaths of the other three) will be disqualified. A reason has to be given for your split-second choice. remember – history turns on your decision.
I’m sitting here (not) studying for an exam later this week. Blagged a day off work and all. On my iPhone at the moment are tracks by John Lennon, George Harrison, Jeff Beck, Jimi Hendrix and the Beatles (very Classic Rock, I know).
In a desperate effort not to actually learn anything pertinent, my brain has expanded upon a Hepworthian theory that it has previously toyed with: The classic/cliched sound of many artists is not the sound associated wih their most successful or lauded period. Some examples for consideration:
> The ‘classic’ Hendrix guitar sound, the one that has people instantly thinking ‘Jimi’ is a mildly overdriven strat sound, with or without fuzz, fed through a univibe pedal to give that swirling, underwater vibe. Think ‘Band of Gypsies’ In fact, think of nothing but Band of Gypsies, as that was the only place he used this sound, barring posthumous releases, and it’s hardly considered his defining work. It’s the sound that Robin Trower built a career on and numerous guitar effects pedals try to recreate, and Hendrix only used it for a few messy months before he died.
>The classic George Harrison guitar sound is the sound from » Continue Reading.
A friend sent me the link to this rather wonderful site.
A very simple idea. Each week, a guest writer who has never heard a classic album is asked to listen to it three times and then write a review.
I suspect the AW will love it, not least because the album reviewed this week is the HJHM’s Help.
I posted a couple of amazing recordings and video settings by the magical ProgMom (Julie to her friends) at ‘the Old Place’. Here’s her latest: ‘Dear Prudence’.
Other than Banjo’s post below, I’m a little surprised by the dearth of HJHs threads in the “New Place” (MkII). I’m even more surprised that I’m the one saying it! It was only recently I realized that despite owning thousands of LPs and CDs there was a gaping, mop-top shaped hole in my collection. The GLW kindly remedied the situation at Christmas with “The Beatles Remastered Stereo Boxset“, and I’ve been listening to almost nothing else since… fuck me they were good! But the strange thing is, why now? I was 10 when they broke up, and they had always just been there, in the background of all my childhood memories, supplying the soundtrack of my life until then. Around this time I bought one of my first real singles (with birthday record tokens), “Ride a White Swan“ by T. Rex. This was MY music! Well, that and “Back Home“ by the England World Cup Squad…! But the Beatles, nah, they were okay, but they were just part of the woodwork. By the mid seventies I’d bought several Wings and Lennon albums as well as the mandatory “Blue” and „Red“ albums, but never really played the latter two much because, » Continue Reading.