Sunday, March 31, 2013

Last of Roe/Montez

March 31, 1963

The Tommy Roe / Chris Montez UK tour is history after a date in Leicester, but there is no rest for the Beatles.

In the first week of April, they will record three appearances on various BBC radio programs.  On one appearance, John and Paul sit on the record jury ("Good beat - I could dance to it") and are paid the  princely sum of one guinea (a little more than a pound) for their trouble.

The band records live versions of just about all of the songs on the album, and one music hall kind of intro with the house band, the Karl Denver Trio.  Sounds a lot like a short return to their skiffle roots to me.

Meanwhile, back in Liverpool, John's wife Cynthia is suffering through the last stages of a cold winter pregnancy as a guest in John's Aunt Mimi's house.  She worries, as I imagine all first time mothers must, what the experience of childbirth will be like.  Her reminiscences of that time are of a lonely ordeal  to be endured, but to her credit, Mimi did turn over the nicest parts of the house for the use of Cynthia and John (on the rare occasions he was there.)

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Hittin' the Streets

March 22, 1963

The first Beatles album, "Please Please Me" goes on sale in the UK today.  It will take a couple of months for it to get to number one, but the handwriting is now on the wall.

Side One
1. "I Saw Her Standing There" (Lennon-McCartney)
2. "Misery" (Lennon-McCartney)
3. "Anna (Go to Him)" (Arthur Alexander)
4. "Chains" (Gerry Goffin-Carole King)
5. "Boys" (Luther Dixon-Wes Farrell)
6. "Ask Me Why" (Lennon-McCartney)
7. "Please Please Me" (Lennon-McCartney)

Side Two
1. "Love Me Do" (Lennon-McCartney)
2. "P.S. I Love You" (Lennon-McCartney)
3. "Baby It's You" (Burt Bacharach-Mack David-Barney Williams)
4. "Do You Want to Know a Secret" (Lennon-McCartney)
5. "A Taste of Honey" (Ric Marlow-Bobby Scott)
6. "There's a Place" (Lennon-McCartney)
7. "Twist and Shout" (Phil Medley-Bert Russell)

Saturday, March 16, 2013

The Show Must Go On (and On and On)

March 12/16, 1963

Some prime examples of the very hard work the Beatles are doing to keep the snowball rolling downhill.  On the 12th, John is felled by a bad cold.  The other three Beatles rearrange the songs so that Paul and George take over his guitar and vocal parts and the tour continues with a three Beatle band. 

On the 13th, John does show up in London, even though he can't sing, to overdub the harmonica parts for "Thank You Girl" at Abbey Road Studios.  From there, the Three-tles go north to York for a performance, then on the 15th, John rejoins the tour in Bristol.  On the 16th, they fulfill a prior Radio Luxembourg commitment, again in London, and then drive 160 miles north to perform in Sheffield with Roe/Montez.

It makes me tired just writing it! 

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Touring with the Americans

March 9, 1963

The Beatles set off on another UK tour only five day after their previous tour ends.  This time the headliners are Tommy Roe (singing "Sheila" - always liked that name) and Chris Montez, a latin inspired singer from California.  The tour will last through the month of March and various promotional appearances will be made on some days where shows are performed at night, sometime separated by many miles.  The Beatles show the Americans that these new upstart locals can bring it as well as they.

Another great Beatle resource... Beatles Chronology FB page.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Another Single in the Works

March 5, 1963

Now that the Shapiro Tour is history, recording can begin on the the next single with "From Me to You" (written five days ago) and "Thank You, Girl".  Both songs are deliberately addressed directly to the somewhat young female fan base.  With two sides for the next single in the can, the Beatles use the remainder of their studio time today laying down a couple of future possibilities, "One After 909" and "What Goes On".  Both of those will be revisited later.

Some outstanding photographs of this visit to London here.  I love how they are photographed suiting up for another day at the office.  Also, love the velvet collar on Brian Epstein's coat.  So stylish.  The "ad man" looking guy with the horn rim glasses in the pictures is Dick James, the Beatles music publisher.  And the pics from the Abbey Road canteen - Priceless!  And don't neglect to follow that little "On to the recording session-->" link at the bottom of the page.  Some of the very best pictures of Beatles at work anywhere.

"The Source" is definitely one of my favorite web sites.

On March 7th, Brian tries out a new idea.  He loads all of his best acts (The Beatles, Gerry and the Pacemakers, The Big Three, Billy J Kramer and the Dakotas onto two chartered buses along with 80 local fans and drives them down to Nottingham for an Epsteinfest show. This is the first of six "Mersey Beat Showcases" he organizes.