Tag Archive | paul mccartney

The Beatles Pop Up Greeting Cards!

Sgt Pepper
Image Source

It’s been 50 years since The Beatles released Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, an album widely considered to be among the best rock albums of all time, and aside from a very cool documentary about the making of Sgt Pepper (which was released on Septembers 8th) some cool collectible memorabilia is also making its way to the market. In honor of this exciting anniversary, 3D design company Lovepop have released The Beatles Sgt. Pepper 3D Card! This gorgeous design was created in partnership with The Beatles and is one of three officially licensed designs that include a fabulous 3D rendering of the Yellow Submarine, and the iconic scene of The Beatles crossing Abbey Road.

Yellow Submarine

I suspect you may feel the need to own these. The Beatles‘ cards sell for $15 each or $40 for a pack of all three designs, and can be purchased at This Link!

Abbey Road

The Beatles’ “All You Need Is Love” 50th Anniversary Photographs at Morrison Hotel Gallery

All You Need is Love Color
All Photos By Gail

It was 1967 and photographer David Magnus stepped into the ultimate temple of musical genius and creativity known as Abbey Road Studios in London. There, he joined The Beatles and their invited guests, who would all participate in the first world-wide global satellite broadcast performance of a song John Lennon had written called “All You Need Is Love.” Little did David know at the time that he would be the only photographer there.

All You Need is Love Session

The Beatles sang “All You Need Is Love” for a global audience, and Magnus’s beautiful never-before-seen images, now on exhibit (and for sale) at the Morrison Hotel Gallery in SoHo, NYC take you on a journey inside what went on in front of the television cameras and behind the scenes on the day of that their global satellite broadcast, which happened fifty years ago. We attended the show’s opening reception at MHG back in June and had a groovy time. Please enjoy our photos from the show!

John at the Mic
John Lennon at the Mic

Here’s are a few more details of that day 50 years ago:

On June 25, 1967, performers representing 19 countries from around the world appeared on Our World, the first international television production broadcast by satellite.

Mick Jagger and John Lennon
Mick Jagger and John Lennon

An estimated 400 million viewers watched the two-and-a-half hour program, which featured talent including Pablo Picasso and Maria Callas and was closed out by a performance of “All You Need Is Love” by The Beatles.

Paul Triptych
Paul McCartney Triptych

Photographer David Magnus was a friend of and regular collaborator with the band, was on hand to take pictures of the historic gig. The majority of these photos have never been seen before by the public.

George and Patti with Brian
George Harrison and Wife Pattie Boyd with Brian Epstein

George Harrison
George Harrison at the Mic

All You Need is Love Installation View
All You Need is Love Installation View

John and Paul
Paul and John with Ringo in Foreground

John and Paul with Brian
John and Paul with Brian

3 Beatles with Brian
From the Same Series as Above, But Now Including George on the Far Left

Beatles in a Diner
The Beatles Dining in the Studio Commissary

Ringo as Barry Wom

When I look at this photo of Ringo at his drumkit, I just see Barry Wom from The Rutles. Anyone else?

George and Paul
George and John Getting Some Tea

High res images from the All You Need is Love collection can be found at the Morrison Hotel Gallery Website (Click This Link), where you will also find information on how to purchase these fine art prints. The gallery is located at 116 Prince Street, 2nd Floor in SoHo, New York City.

All You Need is Love Studio Session

All You Need is Love Signage
All You Need is Love B&W

Show Review: Lennon: Through a Glass Onion

Lennon Glass Onion Poster

For Beatles fans who crave an authentic performance experience of the group’s expansive catalog of music, there is certainly no shortage of grand scale productions, which range from Rain and Let it Be on Broadway to 1964 The Tribute – an act that regularly sells out Carnegie Hall. But for fans who maintain a keen interest in the life and post-Beatles career of John Lennon specifically, Lennon: Through a Glass Onion offers something completely different.

Now in evening and matinee performances at the Union Square Theater, Lennon: Through a Glass Onion, is an intimate, two-man show featuring esteemed actor and singer John R. Waters and accompanist Stewart D’Arrietta, which originally saw sell-out tours in the duo’s native Australia. While there are no dazzling lights, clever sets, informative backdrops or special effects to bolster this very stripped down production, what you get is a heartfelt acoustic performance (guitar and piano – and D’Arrietta’s piano playing is quite excellent) of a selection of over thirty of John Lennon’s best and most autobiographical songs – both written with Paul McCartney while in The Beatles, and written and recorded by Lennon as a solo artist.

Tying the musical numbers together is Water’s biographical narrative of John Lennon’s often traumatic youth and tumultuous adulthood, the ups and down of which are punctuated and fleshed out by songs he wrote at that time. Although Water’s speaking voice is appealingly similar to Lennon’s, his (often quite gravelly) singing voice is not, so don’t expect the “close your eyes and imagine it is really him” effect that you can get with so many tributes. Through a Glass Onion is really more like watching two hardcore John Lennon fans perform his songs and talk about his life in a pub setting. This may or may not be your thing, so just know what you are walking into ahead of time.

In order to fit thirty songs into a 90-minute run time, many of the songs are performed as excerpts of various lengths, but you get the idea. Likewise, some liberty is taken with traditional arrangements, which finds “Help!” – one of The Beatles‘ most exhilarating anthems – performed almost as a dirge. Sometimes the alternative arrangements work and other times not so much.

It’s also unclear how much of the biographical information is simply improvised or creatively extrapolated based on various facts but, again, it is easy to imagine that Waters is speaking as Lennon and the story all comes together. As an aside, fans seeking more information about John Lennon’s life as a child and teenager, including the not-very-happy story about his relationship with his mother Julia – which had such a profound influence on so many of his songs — might be better served by the 2009 film, Nowhere Boy. You can find it on Netflix.

An added note about the venue, for those who’ve not yet been to the Union Square Theater, is that you are in for treat in this pristinely maintained, old school theater where every very comfy seat offers optimal viewing, so you don’t have to stretch your ticket buying budget to get the best seat in the house. The theater is also conveniently located three blocks uptown from the Union Square subway hub and is within blocks of dozens of excellent restaurants — so you can plan a night of it!

Lennon: Through a Glass Onion will run through February 22nd, 2015 at the Union Square Theater, located at 100 East 17th Street (Between Park Ave South and Irving Place), New York, NY 10003. Visit Lennon Onstage Dot Com for more information about the show, to get show times and to purchase tickets!

Remembering Jimmy McCulloch

Jimmy Mcculloch Guitar
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On this day, September 27th in 1979, Scottish guitarist Jimmy McCulloch (sometimes spelled McCullough) died from a heroin overdose in his flat in Maida Vale, London. He was 26 years old.

McCulloch, perhaps best known as the lead guitarist for Paul McCartney’s Wings (1974 to 1977) had also been a member of Stone The Crows and Thunderclap Newman. When “Something in the Air” by Thunderclap Newman went to No.1 in 1969, it made McCulloch the youngest guitarist to ever play on a UK No.1 single, as he was was just sixteen years old at the time.

In a tragic case of artistic irony, the Wings‘ hit, “Medicine Jar,” sung by Jimmy, was the first song recorded by the group to feature another band member on all lead vocals. “Medicine Jar” is an anti-drug song with music written by McCulloch. Colin Allen, who was a drummer in the band Stone The Crows (with McCulloch), wrote the lyrics. RIP.

Casey Kaplan Gallery Presents: I Went to School With Someone Called Jonathon Monk

A Copy of Deflated Sculpture No 1
A Copy of Deflated Sculpture No 1 By Jonathan Monk (All Photos By Gail)

When it comes to my taste in Contemporary art, two things that always draw me in are clever appropriation and subversive absurdity. I just love that shit. And that is part of the reason I had such a good time at this exhibit called I Went to School with Someone Called Jonathon Monk, which is over at the Casey Kaplan Gallery. You should check it out.

For this extremely fun and cerebrally stimulating exhibit, artist Jonathan Monk (whose first name is intentionally misspelled in the exhibit’s title) interprets significant biographical events in his own life by filtering his art projects through the works of artists that have influenced him. Or something like that. According to the Press Release, Monk’s work “is a continuing engagement with notions of authorship and identity, as he recasts iconic works of art with a consistent and incisive humor.” Take a look at the above photo, for example.

In the gallery’s front room, you’ll see the above pictured work entitled A Copy Of Deflated Sculpture No. 1, which any art fan can tell immediately is a knock off of an iconic, Jeff Koons Inflatable. What you might not know is that the sculpture is “a facsimile of Monk’s subtly deflated copy of Jeff Koon’s iconic inflatable bunny, exhibited in his 2009 exhibition with the gallery, The Inflated Deflated.” Does your brain hurt yet? Mine does.

Here are additional works we enjoyed!

Miniature Paul McCartney in a Santa Suit

Together Again But Always Alone (2014) is a miniature statue of Paul McCartney dressed in a paint-smeared Santa suit, which references artist Paul McCarthy’s 1999 performance piece, Tokyo Santa. So genius.

Dichroic Glass with Model

Figurative Sandwich (2014) features two Black and White prints (Vintage foundation garment ads) on either side of a sheet of Radiant Plexiglas, which possibly references the works of Dan Graham.

Rainbow Painted VW Hood

You’ll Never See My Face In Kansas City (2007) Enamel Paint on Volkswagen Type I Beetle Hood.

From One State To Another

From One State To Another (Sewn Together To Make A Whole) (2014), Souvenir scarves from every American state sewn together in the shape of the country, a reference to the embroidered maps of the late Alighiero Boetti.

Skull

Mistakes Have Been Made (2014), Marble Sculpture of Child’s Skull-Shaped Eraser.

Pennies on the Wall

From the Year I was Born Until the Year I Left America (2014), 31 C-prints mounted on Medium Density Fiberboard.

Art On Fire

Three Part Piece (Untitled Wood Destroyed). Taking a lost, early wooden sculpture by American minimalist Carl Andre as its starting point, Monk displays the work in three variations – a charred replica, a photograph of its original condition, as well as video documentation of the work burning (seen in the photo above).

Worleygig.com Highly Recommends This Exhibit!

I Went to School With Someone Called Jonathon Monk will be on Exhibit Through October 18th, 2014 at Casey Kaplan Gallery, located at 525 West 21st Street, in the Chelsea Gallery District.

Jonathan Monk Signage

Morrison Hotel Gallery Celebrates The 50th Anniversary of The Beatles Arrival in New York

The Beatles at Airport
All Photos of the Exhibit By Gail (Click on Any Image to Enlarge)

On Thursday, February 6th, one of our favorite venues, the Morrison Hotel Gallery on Prince Street launched a truly exceptional photography show celebrating the 50th anniversary of The Beatles’ first arrival in the States in 1964.

The Beatles, Abbey Road Studio,
The Beatles at Abbey Road Studio, England 1963 By Terry O’Neill

This exhibit was curated by Julian Lennon, who personally selected 50 photographs of his late father, John Lennon, and his band mates Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr and George Harrison to honor the 50th Anniversary celebration, which has been marked by a variety of events this week including the Fest for Beatles Fans going on it NYC this weekend. Twenty-five photos are on exhibit at MHG’s New York space with an additional twenty-five on display at its sister gallery in Los Angeles.

Here are a few of my favorite pictures from the Opening Reception (Keep in mind that the quality of these original photographs  is vastly superior to my representations).

Ringo Starr
Ringo at His Kit

Paul and George on the Beach
Paul and George on the Beach By Curt Gunther (1964)

Brian Epstein and The Beatles
Brian Epstein and The Beatles By Curt Gunther (1964)

The Beatles with Cassius Clay
The Beatles with Cassius Clay (Muhammad Ali) in the Ring By Charles Trainor (1964)

The Beatles with Stripped Umbrellas
The Beatles in Scotland By Robert Whitaker (1964)

Paul and John with Ed Sullivan
The Beatles and Ed Sullivan Back Stage By Charles Trainor (1964)

The Beatles at Airport
The Beatles Arrive in NYC By Ken Regan (1964)

Pattie Boyd Signature

Pattie Boyd, former wife of George Harrison and muse who inspired songs like “Something” and “For You Blue” was at the reception and graciously signed my copy of her book.

Needless to say, but you can see I am about to, This exhibit is not to be missed for any Beatles Fan.

The Morrison Hotel Gallery is now Located in its New Space at 116 Prince Street, Second Floor NYC.

The Beatles Logo

Recommended Listening: American Hustle Soundtrack

American Hustle Album Artwork

Have you seen American Hustle yet? It is the best movie, about a story that happened during my favorite decade: the 1970s. The Seventies were a time of amazing visual stye in everything from furniture design to fashion, but it was also the decade of the best music ever. Just think about it: the worldwide phenomena that was Disco book-ended by The Beatles and Punk Rock. Wow. Mind blowing. It all happened in The Seventies!

It stands to reason then that American Hustle’s Original Motion Picture Soundtrack would be liberally studded with some serious seventies musical gems. There is something for every musical taste on this disc, from big band action courtesy of Duke Ellington’s “Jeep’s Blues” to timeless classic rock (Elton John’s “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road”), to an original instrumental track by veteran soundtrack composer, Danny Elfman. There may not be any Beatles’ songs on here, but Paul McCartney (the world’s first Billionaire Rock Star) makes an appearance with his post-Beatle’s band, Wings, delivering the epic spy film theme song, “Live and Let Die.”

Not unexpectedly, revisiting songs that I first heard when I was a pre-teen music snob has inspired me to have a bit of an epiphany. America’s mega-hit from 1972, “A Horse With No Name” was dismissed by me at the time of its release as a Neil Young rip off full of lyrical nonsense. But in a modern day context, the part where the narrator is “looking at a riverbed” and reflecting that, “The story it told / of a river that flowed/ made me sad to think it was dead” is positively sobering. Because remember: he’s in the desert. This song is genius.

Of course, it would not be a full-on 70s experience without some crotch grabbing disco fun, and Music Supervisor Susan Jacobs hits it out of the park by including Donna Summer’s “I Feel Love” — a song that says more about the pervasive hedonism of Disco culture with just three words and a wildly hypnotic, insistent electronic beat than any other song ever has. And while I was originally bummed that the included performance of “Don’t Leave Me This Way” is by Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes rather that the classic Thelma Houston version, I got over it pretty quickly.

Speaking of covers, I very much enjoy the faithful-to-the-original arrangement of Jefferson Airplane’s classic “White Rabbit” sung in Arabic by vocalist Mayssa Karaa.

But the song which has unarguably received the biggest shot in the arm for its inclusion in the film is Electric Light Orchestra’s prophetic and compelling “10538 Overture,” which has probably been downloaded a hundred times since you started reading this review. I can’t believe I have survived for forty years without having this song at my finger tipis to replay over and over and over again. Seriously, this song is just insane. ELO appear again with “Long Black Road” and vocalist Jeff Lynne also contributes “Stream Of Stars,” a previously unreleased instrumental track that just takes its own little journey to the center of your heart in under three minutes.

Tom Jones, Jack Jones and Chris Stills (son of Stephen Stills, providing the only song not actually written and previously recorded in the seventies) round out this A+ collection of songs that rank as a must own album for any music fan.

American Hustle – Original Motion Picture Soundtrack, Track Listing:

1.    Jeep’s Blues | Duke Ellington

2.    Goodbye Yellow Brick Road | Elton John

3.    White Rabbit | Mayssa Karaa

4.    10538 Overture | Electric Light Orchestra

5.    Live And Let Die | Wings

6.    How Can You Mend A Broken Heart | Bee Gees

7.    I Feel Love | Donna Summer

8.    Don’t Leave Me This Way | Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes

9.    Delilah | Tom Jones

10.  I’ve Got Your Number | Jack Jones

11.  Long Black Road | Electric Light Orchestra

12.  A Horse With No Name | America

13.  Stream Of Stars | Jeff Lynne

14.  Live To Live  | Chris Stills

15.  Irving Montage | Danny Elfman

The Beatles’ Help! Digitally Restored 1965 Film Now on iTunes!

HELP Header  

London – June 25, 2013The Beatles’ second feature film, 1965’s Help!, makes its worldwide digital release debut today, exclusively on the iTunes Store (www.iTunes.com/TheBeatles). The digitally restored film and 5.1 soundtrack features iTunes Extras including a 30-minute documentary about the making of the film, memories of the cast and crew, an in-depth look at the restoration process, an outtake scene, original theatrical trailers and radio spots and detailed art, including a companion piece with an introduction by the film’s director, Richard Lester and an appreciation by Martin Scorsese.

Help Beatles Perform B&W

Help!’s debut on the iTunes Store and Blu-ray follows the 2012 release of The Beatles’ digitally restored Yellow Submarine and Magical Mystery Tour feature films on iTunes, Blu-ray and DVD with extensive extras. Help!’s restoration for its 2007 DVD debut wowed viewers, earning five-times platinum sales in the U.S. and praise from a broad range of top media outlets around the world, including USA Today heralding the DVD as “a grand re-release,” The Guardian’s appreciation of the film’s director, Richard Lester, saying “Lester matches The Beatles’ ‘star’ power with smart, colourful visuals and casual surrealism,” The Los Angeles Times’ restoration rave: “With dynamic compression that was standard in the 1960s lifted for the digital age, the full range of the group’s musicality comes through – it’s like several coats of dust have been cleaned off an old master’s painting,” and four-star reviews from Rolling Stone and MOJO with the latter saying, “They really don’t make them like this anymore.”

Help Beatles in Austria

Directed by Richard Lester, who also directed the band’s debut feature film, 1964’s A Hard Day’s Night, Help! follows The Beatles as they become passive recipients of an outside plot that revolves around Ringo’s possession of a sacrificial ring, which he cannot remove from his finger. As a result, he and his bandmates John, Paul and George are chased from London to the Austrian Alps and the Bahamas by religious cult members, a mad scientist and the London police.

Help Beatles on the Beach

In addition to starring The Beatles, Help! boasts a witty script, a great cast of British character actors, and classic Beatles songs “Help!,” “You’re Going To Lose That Girl,” “You’ve Got To Hide Your Love Away,” “Ticket To Ride,” “I Need You,” “The Night Before,” and “Another Girl.”

Help!’s iTunes digital download pairs the digitally restored original film with these iTunes Extras:

• “The Beatles in Help!” – a 30-minute documentary about the making of the film with Richard Lester, the cast and crew, including exclusive behind-the-scenes footage of The Beatles on-set.
• “A Missing Scene” – a film outtake, featuring Wendy Richard
• “The Restoration of Help!” – an in-depth look at the restoration process
• “Memories of Help!” – the cast and crew reminisce
• 1965 Theatrical Trailers – two original U.S. trailers and one original Spanish trailer
• 1965 U.S. Radio Spots (hidden in menus)

http://www.thebeatles.com

CAST
The Beatles:
John………..………………………………………………………..John Lennon
Paul………………………………………………………………Paul McCartney
George……….…………………………………………………George Harrison
Ringo……….…………………………………………………………Ringo Starr
Clang………………………………………………………………….Leo McKern
Ahme…………………………………………………………………Eleanor Bron
Foot…………………………………………………………….Victor Spinetti
Algernon…………………………………………………………Roy Kinnear
Superintendent……………………………………………..Patrick Cargill
Bhuta………………………………………………………………John Bluthal
Jeweller………………………………………………………………Peter Copley
Doorman…………………………………………………………………Alfie Bass
Abdul…………………………………………………………..…Warren Mitchell
Lawnmower…………………………………………………………Bruce Lacey
Cross channel swimmer……………………………………………Mal Evans
Women in street…………………Dandy Nichols and Gretchen Franklin
PRODUCTION
Director ……………………………………………………………Richard Lester
Producer …………………………………………………………Walter Shenson
Screenplay…………………………………..Marc Behm and Charles Wood
Story by………………………………………………………………..Marc Behm
Director of Photography…………………………………………David Watkin
Production Manager……………………………………………….John Pellatt
Art Director………………………………………………………Raymond Simm
Colour Consultant and Titles…………………………………Robert Freeman
Costume Designer…………………………………………………….Julie Harris
Musical Director………………………………………………………Ken Thorne
Songs composed by…………………..John Lennon and Paul McCartney and George Harrison
Songs performed by…………………………………………………The Beatles
Songs produced by……………………………………………..George Martin

Must See Concert Film: Paul McCartney and Wings ROCKSHOW

Paul McCartney Rock Show Poster

If there was ever a pop star born with a more sizeable share of outrageous talent than most mere mortals, it is Paul McCartney. Not only is he among the most celebrated and successful song writers in the world, an innovative bass player who also plays the drums, piano and guitar equally well, a charismatic public figure and one of the best looking men on the planet (seriously, in his 20s and 30s, especially, McCartney could hold a close up for days) but he was a member of The fucking Beatles – the greatest band ever in the Universe of All Time. And the craziest thing about Paul McCartney’s many-decades long career is that he has made everything he does look easy. That, my friend, is the mark of a truly gifted and legendary artist.

Paul McCartney still tours, and if he happens to be playing in your city and you have $500 burning a hole in your pocket, you can buy a ticket to go see him. If that price seems a little out of your range, you might consider buying a ticket to see ROCKSHOW, a 1980 concert film by McCartney and his then-band Wings, which is coming to theaters Worldwide on May 15th, and here in the States starting May 16th. That would be a lot cheaper and you’ll probably get better seats! Filmed during the North American leg of the band’s 1976 Wings Over The World Tour, the two-hour plus length film features 30 songs from four concerts of the tour: New York, May 25 (four songs); Seattle, June 10 (five songs); Los Angeles, June 22 (15 songs); and Los Angeles, June 23 (six songs). This tour also spawned the triple live album, Wings Over America.

Although I am as crazy for the music of The Beatles today as I was at age five, when I first discovered the soundtrack of the film HELP! thanks to my older sister, Wings was never a band that yanked my chain all that much. I was probably listening to Alice Cooper and a lot of German Prog Rock at that time, so, I was surprised at the intense waves of deep nostalgia that washed over me as I sat rapt for two hours watching ROCKSHOW on my iMac so I could write this review. Little did I know then that, nearly forty years onward, Wings’ songs would sound like the Classical music of its time! The set list for ROCKSHOW is comprised of tracks from the albums Red Rose Speedway, Band on the Run, Venus and Mars and Wings at the Speed of Sound and some of McCartney’s early solo work, while being favorably augmented by many Beatles’ classics. What a great concert experience this film serves up!

Paul McCartney Rock Show Bass

Paul McCartney & Wings included McCartney’s wife and muse, keyboardist Linda McCartney (RIP), drummer Joe English, guitarists Denny Laine and Jimmy McCulloch (RIP) plus a four piece horn section. Demonstrating that wings was as egalitarian a band as any fronted by a former Beatle, Paul frequently hands over lead vocal duties to Laine and McCulloch, beginning early in the set with “Spirits of Ancient Egypt” and “Medicine Jar,” respectively. Laine also reprises his lead vocal performance of The Moody Blues’ early #1 hit, “Go Now” and shows himself to be a remarkably charismatic front man on the urgent and compelling “Time To Hide.” Although the cameras can tend to linger on McCartney’s ridiculously handsome visage for endless minutes at a time (not complaining), everyone in the group is represented, reinforcing the fact that Wings was a true “band of brothers,” so to speak and not just a group of hired musicians supporting McCartney as a solo act.

Read More After The Jump

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RIP Legendary Music Producer Phil Ramone

Phil Ramone
Image Source

Fourteen time Grammy winning record producer Phil Ramone passed away in New York today, March 30th, 2013. The cause of death has not yet been disclosed. Ramone was 72 years old (though I have seen two sources cite his age as 79, not sure where that is coming from as his year of birth is given as 1941). A brief list of artists Ramone worked with includes Burt Bacharach, Bono, Ray Charles, Bob Dylan, Aretha Franklin, Quincy Jones, Madonna, Paul McCartney, Paul Simon, Frank Sinatra and Stevie Wonder. CNN has more information and celebrity remembrances in a nice obit at This Link. RIP, Phil!