The seedlings that became my first book, Postcards From Liverpool, sprouted in 2012 while I was the music columnist for Carpinteria’s Coastal View News. Whether I was profiling a local band, interviewing singer-songwriters or reviewing a nationally known act, each artist invariably cited the Beatles music as their inspiration, template or musical muse. That goes for me too. I’m a guitarist/vocalist with several music videos on www.youtube.com and songs on iTunes and CD Baby.
I began Postcards From Liverpool with a handful of columns/articles I’d written about the Beatles legacy. My research began with a detailed look at how the band created their source sound/s. My Beatles library has grown to over 125 titles and videos. The most recent book I’ve purchased is The Beatles Down Under by Glenn A. Baker. It was originally published in 1982 and tells the story of the Beatles 1964 tour of Australia and New Zealand. I’d always been interested in that tour because of the over-the-top reaction of Australian fans. Even with Ringo Starr stuck in a London hospital, over 200,000 people turned out to welcome the Beatles motorcade in Adelaide, Australia. The band toured in fourteen foreign countries outside Great Brittan and Adelaide drew their biggest crowd.
Postcards From Liverpool was formatted and had its cover created in Brisbane, Australia. In future blogs I’ll tell you about the process I went through, to start to finish. Anthony Puttee and his staff at www.book cover café.com were real pros and very patient. We skyped and exchanged over 100 emails during the book’s three month design process.
Another of my 2016 Beatles purchases was the October issue of Mojo Magazine. It featured a collector’s cover shot, two separate vintage Beatles posters, terrific text and a photo spread on the Beatles international tours. Mojo Magazine is published in England and always includes a music CD as part of their package. The October issue included a CD of cover songs the Beatles played at Hamburg’s Starr Club. The Mojo issue was timed to appear just as Ron Howard’s documentary, Eight Days A Week: The Beatles Touring Years began its limited release run.
I saw Howard’s film in three different theaters (opening night in San Luis Obispo, CA and in Los Angeles and Carpinteria). I was drawn back to the documentary because of its live concert sequences presented in vivid color with enhanced digital sound. The movie’s opening concert was filmed in Sweden. It’s spectacular. The documentary film is now available for purchase and is streaming on Hulu.com.
I’ll stop here. Next time I’ll review the four English pop/rock acts I saw perform live in 2016.