The George Harrison Memorial Tree in Los Angeles, planted in memory of the Beatles guitarist, was killed by beetles.
I recently reviewed the incredible graphic novel biography, The Fifth Beatle: The Brian Epstein Story, written by Vivek J. Tiwary and illustrated by Andrew C. Robinson and Kyle Baker. (It was just nominated for two Eisner awards!)
Last week I announced that Wink (a paper book review website that my wife Carla Sinclair edits) was holding a giveaway of the rare signed, numbered, slipcased "Limited Edition" of The Fifth Beatle, which is limited to 1500 copies, signed by all three creators and comes with an exclusive tip-in page of art. Entrants to the giveaway were asked to write their own text for the word balloons in the panel above. (Clockwise L-R John Lennon, George Harrison, Brian Epstein, Ringo Starr, Paul McCartney. NOTE: John has 2 balloons.)
The entries were judged by Vivek J. Tiwary himself, and he selected a winner for the limited edition and a runner-up for a regular edition.
[Video Link] 17-year-old Dylan Gardner says: "In honor of the Beatles breakup on April 10, 1970, I decided to cover the entire second side of their last album, Abbey Road, with different instruments for 15-second intervals. Abbey Road has always stuck with me as an incredible ending note for a great career that the Beatles have put together. It's just me around the house having a blast covering my heroes!"
I asked Dylan how he made these videos (which will appear on his Instagram feed). He answered: "The Beatles have been such a huge part of my musical upbringing, so I couldn't think of a better afternoon than stealing my parents' new video camera and running around my empty house covering the better side of Abbey Road in Instagram-sized videos. I'd tie a zip tie around the camera to hold angles as I grabbed as many miscellaneous instruments as I could. I made a mess of the house, but the bright side is this isn't the last time I'll do that..."
Dylan's debut album, Adventures in Real Time is set to be released on May 13th.
I recently reviewed The Fifth Beatle: The Brain Epstein Story, written by Vivek J. Tiwary and illustrated by Andrew C. Robinson and Kyle Baker. It is one of the great graphic novels, destined to be a classic. Here's what I wrote in my review on Wink:
The Fifth Beatle is Vivek J. Tiwary’s fascinating, cinematic account of Beatles manager Brian Epstein’s determination to ignore the chorus of rejections and take The Beatles far beyond where any musical group had gone before — to a place occupied by a handful of religious figures and charismatic world leaders. And Epstein accomplished it, despite the fact that he was Jewish in a culture of strong anti-semitism, and gay when being gay was a felony. That he was able to do what he did in six years (he died of an accidental drug overdose when he was 32 years old) is astounding.
Wink is holding a giveaway of the rare signed, numbered, slipcased "Limited Edition" of The Fifth Beatle, which is limited to 1500 copies, signed by all three creators and comes with an exclusive tip-in page of art. To win, all you have to do is write your own text for the word balloons in the panel above. (Clockwise L-R John Lennon, George Harrison, Brian Epstein, Ringo Starr, Paul McCartney. NOTE: John has 2 balloons.) The entries will be judged by Vivek J. Tiwary himself, and he will select the winner. The contest ends at noon Pacific time on April 10, 2014, the day Brian Epstein is being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Good luck!
In each episode of Gweek, I invite a guest or two to join me in a discussion about recommended media, apps, and gadgets. My guests were Boing Boing’s software developer Dean Putney and Rob Reid, an entrepreneur and author of the science fiction novel Year Zero. We talked about Dean's Kickstarter-funded book, the Walter Koessler Project; Sony RX-100, which Rob finds to be "an absolutely amazing pocket camera (see these fantastic Rolling Stones photos he took using the camera);" Starship Century, a fascinating compendium of scientific essays focused on considering the neari-ish term plausibility of interstellar travel; the Basis self-tracking watch (the first one that takes your pulse 24/7); a stunningly beautiful comic book biography called The Fifth Beatle: The Brian Epstein Story; the newly redesigned Reddit.tv; and a new cartoon series by Adventure Time's Rebecca Sugar, Steven Universe.
I finally had some time to put together a mix for all of you who've been asking over the years of my beatles/mccartney stuff for tour. It's about 2hrs long. I hope you enjoy. I've had the best time in the history of the world making the tracks and putting it together.
It starts off at 88bpm and speeds up until it loops around at 176 (88bpm) completing the cycle.
It's the first time I've shared this stuff in bulk, I hope you all enjoy it.
Here is four years of my Beatles/macca mixes.
Read the rest
Read Chapter 22 of the new book, How the Beatles Rocked the Kremlin: The Untold Story of a Noisy Revolution, by Leslie Woodhead, a Cold War spy who filmed the Beatles in 1962.
Imagine a world where Beatlemania was against the law -- recordings scratched onto medical X-rays, merchant sailors bringing home contraband LPs, spotty broadcasts taped from western AM radio late in the night. This was no fantasy world populated by Blue Meanies but the USSR, where a vast nation of music fans risked repression to hear the defining band of the British Invasion.
In August, 1962, Leslie Woodhead filmed a two-minute cameo of four unknown kids bashing out rock ’n’ roll in a Liverpool cellar. Not long after, The Beatles were conquering the world.
How the Beatles Rocked the Kremlin by Leslie Woodhead tells the improbable story of how the music of the Beatles helped bring down the Soviet Union -- plus eight never-before-seen photos of the Beatles from 1963.
Woodhead, a Cold War–era spy, compiles over three decades of research to demonstrate the group’s impact on the Soviet psyche. The music of John, Paul, George, and Ringo was forbidden, but their music was irresistible. It blasted open the door to Western culture, fomenting a cultural revolution.
How the Beatles Rocked the Kremlin tells the unforgettable, wild, and unmistakably Russian story of Soviet kids who discovered that all you need is Beatles.
Every week on Bedazzled, Derek presents some of his favorite 45 records. This time, he has a collection of five unusual and pleasant Beatles covers, including Day Tripper, Back in the U.S.S.R., Norwegian Wood, Across the Universe, and With a Little Help From My Friends.
Hailing from Baton Rouge, LA, John Fred had a MASSIVE hit with the amazing, Beatle-esque "Judy In Disguise" in 1967, but this veteran performer had a career in music stretching back to his teen years in the late '50s. One could easily be mistaken into thinking John was a black singer, as his heavy, deep south accent OOZES soul, and it's heard to great effect on this FUNKY cover of the song that opens The Beatles self titled 1968 LP, known forever as The White Album. The Playboy Band itself shows off how tight the group was, no doubt brought on by a decade of performing all over the south at Fraternities, sock hops, opening slots, and basically anywhere they could make a living as journeyman musicians.
The Beatles tune "Being for the Benefit of Mr. Kite!" was inspired by an 1843 circus poster that John Lennon purchased at an antiques store and hung in his music room. London designer and Beatles superfan Peter Dean recreated this poster in obsessive detail. He went so far as to collaborate with a wood-engraving artist and had the final poster letterpress printed. Now you can own it too, for £245.00 GBP. "Kite"
Michael Horowitz*, Timothy Leary's longtime archivist, has permitted the Timothy Leary Archives website to publish a transcription of a tape recorded conversation between Dr. Leary and his wife Rosemary, and John Lennon and Yoko Ono, made during John and Yoko's Bed-In for Peace in Montreal, May 1969. Tim had given it to Michael, in 1984, as a present for finishing Tim's bibliography.
The conversation took place during John and Yoko’s week-long Bed-In, on May 29th, 1969. This is just a few months before John would leave the Beatles and move with Yoko to the U.S. where they were closely monitored by the FBI and threatened with deportation, and ten months before Tim would be put in prison for possessing a minuscule amount of marijuana, and Rosemary would be putting on benefits to raise money for his appeal.
This transcript was intended to be added to a previously published piece, “Thank God for the Beatles” (The Beatles Book, 1968), an essay about the Beatles as "evolutionary agents sent by God, endowed with mysterious power to create a new human species," to be published in an anthology of Tim's shorter writings, but the project was abandoned.
The transcript, as far as we can tell, has remained unpublished until now.Transcription of a tape recorded conversation between Timothy Leary and his wife Rosemary, and John Lennon and Yoko Ono
*Michael Horowitz was Timothy Leary's archivist, editor and bibliographer. He co-founded the Fitz Hugh Ludlow Memorial Library and co-edited Moksha: Aldous Huxley's Classic Writings on Psychedelics and the Visionary Experience and Sisters of the Extreme: Women Writing on the Drug Experience (with Cynthia Palmer). He currently operates Flashback Books, an online store, specializing in rare and out of print books on psychedelic science, history and literature.
Ramjac, a British DJ, has produced a mashup of the whole Beatles catalogue. Ramjac's mix, "All Together Now," layers every single Beatles song atop one another, in reverse order of length, so that for the first few seconds, all you hear is "Revolution 9" (the longest song in the songbook), then "Hey Jude" atop it, and "She's So Heavy," and then more and more, until it crashes all together at the last note, with 226 tracks all colliding.
It's more conceptually interesting than musically enjoyable. Hank Handy's 40-track Beatles mashup is a better choice if that's what you're after.