Tag Archive: Beatle


The album was signed by the Fab Four in 1967, and shattered the previous selling price for such an item.

Even Lucy and her diamonds can’t compete with these riches. A rare, signed copy of The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band has brought $290,500 at auction, shattering the previous record for such an item.

The item signed by all four members of the legendary band was purchased Saturday by an unnamed buyer from the Midwest. An anonymous seller parted with the album through the Dallas-based Heritage Auctions, which ahead of the bidding estimated the album would sell for $30,000.

The Fab Four are believed to have signed the cover near the June 1967 release of Sgt. Pepper’s. The previous record for a signed Beatles album cover was the $150,000 paid for a copy of Meet the Beatles. Ahead of the auction, Beatles expert Perry Cox said of the piece: “With my being thoroughly immersed in Beatles collectibles for over 30 years, it takes something extraordinarily special to excite me, but I consider this to be one of the top two items of Beatles memorabilia I’ve ever seen – the other being a signed copy of Meet The Beatles.” The album is a U.K. Parlophone copy with a high gloss cover and gatefold. Read more here: http://bit.ly/10q3nNQ

In honour of what would be George Harrison’s 69th birthday on Saturday, we’ve put together his top ten hits, one’s he penned and sung with The Beatles, and as an accomplished solo musician and songwriter in his own right:

Read more here: http://bit.ly/126nAPu


10I Need You – The Beatles – from Help! It  is the second song written and sung byGeorge Harrison that The Beatles released. It was dedicated to then-girlfriend Pattie Boyd.


9. Don’t Bother Me – The Beatles – from Meet the Beatles! George’s first self-penned song to appear on a Beatles album was written while he was ill on tour:

I was a bit run down and was supposed  to be having some sort of tonic, taking it easy for a few days…I got out my guitar and just played around till a song came. I forgot all about it till we came to record the next LP. It was a fairly crappy song. I forgot about it completely once it was on the album“.


8. What is Life – George Harrison – from his second solo release All Things Must Pass.The song peaked at #10 in 1971, making George the first ex-Beatle to have two Top 10 solo hits on the Billboard chart.


7. While My Guitar Gently Weeps The Beatles – from The White Album. Harrisonwasn’t satisfied with original recordings of the song, so he asked Eric Clapton to record the lead guitar solo in 1968. In his autobiography, Clapton wrote about the experience with George – and the other Beatles:

I was an outsider, but it went well. The song was “While My Guitar Gently Weeps.” We did just one take, and I thought it sounded fantastic. John and Paul were fairly noncommittal, but I knew George was happy because he listened to it over and over in the control room…I felt like I had been brought into their inner sanctum“.


6. All Those Years Ago – George Harrison – from the album Somewhere in England. The death of John Lennon motivated George, Paul and Ringo to collaborate on a tribute to John in 1981:

“…this is a song I wrote to an old friend of ours…whose name is John Lennon“.


5Here Comes the Sun – The Beatles – from the album Abbey RoadThe song is sung by George, a song-writing collaboration between George and close friend Eric Clapton:

Here Comes the Sun” was written at the time when Apple was getting like school, where we had to go and be businessmen: ‘Sign this’ and ‘sign that’. Anyway, it seems as if winter in England goes on forever, by the time spring comes you really deserve it. So one day I decided I was going to sag off Apple and I went over to Eric Clapton’s house. The relief of not having to go see all those dopey accountants was wonderful, and I walked around the garden with one of Eric’s acoustic guitars and wrote “Here Comes the Sun“.


4. Give Me Love, Give Me Peace – George Harrison – from the album Living in the Material World. The song hit #1 in May 1973, knocking “My Love” by McCartney off the top spot on the chart.

With ‘Give Me Love’, again it was a personal thing for me and if anybody else got off on it, well, there it was. But it was awareness of what we need, just give me love, thank you”.


3. Got My Mind Set On You – George Harrison. Two music videos were released for his cover, the first centred around an arcade, the second in a study, with dancing objects – and a backflip!

You know, my humour is such that I have to be able to have something funny happening around me so I can be deadpan, as I’m not really into acting. I think that works very well for me. The director was a guy called Gary Weis, who incidentally directed the Rutles, so he’s a very funny fellow himself. He thought of having a simple setting like that room and making it move so I could just sing straight, play straight andeverything else would be the joke“.


2. Something – The Beatles – from the album Abbey RoadPattie Boyd (George’s girlfriend at the time) claimed in her 2007 autobiography that the song was written about her: “He told me, in a matter-of-fact way, that he had written it for me. I thought it was beautiful“.

But in a 1996 interview, George stated otherwise:

Well no, I didn’t. I just wrote it, and then somebody put together a video. And what they did was they went out and got some footage of me and Patti, Paul and Linda, Ringo and Maureen, it was at that time, and John and Yoko and they just made up a little video to go with it. So then, everybody presumed I wrote it about Patti, but actually, when I wrote it, I was thinking of Ray Charles.”


1. My Sweet Lord – George Harrison – from the album All Things Must Pass. It was the first #1 hit by any ex-Beatle. In an interview in 1980, George talked about the song’s inspiration:

My idea in “My Sweet Lord,” because it sounded like a “pop song,” was to sneak up on them a bit. The point was to have the people not offended by “Hallelujah,” and by the time it gets to “Hare Krishna,” they’re already hooked, and their foot’s tapping, and they’re already singing along “Hallelujah,” to kind of lull them into a sense of false security. And then suddenly it turns into “Hare Krishna,” and they will all be singing that before they know what’s happened, and they will think, “Hey, I thought I wasn’t supposed to like Hare Krishna!” – Interview, 1980

 

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Paste’s Best of 2012 series continues through Dec. 31 and is made possible by our friends at Tretorn.

When all your favorite bands are on Twitter and Instagram, it can seem like you’ve got the inside scoop on all that goes on off stage. But there’s nothing like a well-crafted documentary to see what went into the music you love so dearly. This year saw directors like Spike Lee, Jonathan Demme and Kevin Macdonald filming some iconic music legends. But it also showed that little-known filmmakers documenting smaller acts can create just as a powerful a story. Here are the 10 Best Music Documentaries of 2012.

10. How to Grow a Band
Director: Mark Meatto
A good film—and a good band, for that matter—can be much like The Wizard of Oz. If everything goes just right, if the curtain doesn’t get pulled back, then the audience can find itself part of a great and powerful experience. But with How To Grow A Band, director Mark Meatto proves that, sometimes, a look behind the curtain can yield just as amazing of an experience. Meatto followed the folk-formal-fusion-but-don’t-you-dare-call-it-bluegrass band Punch Brothers for two years: on tour, in studio, on the street, in the living room, in comfort and in flux. The portrait of the band that emerges is clear and precise. We come to know the band so well that the music is comfortingly familiar by film’s end; we come to the know the band members so well that we can hear each individual personality filter through each song. And that’s what How To Grow A Band is really about. Meatto shows us how five virtuosos come together to take traditional music in a new direction.—Joan Radell

9. Bad25
Director: Spike Lee
Airing on ABC on Thanksgiving Day, Spike Lee delved deep into Michael Jackson’s Bad—both the album and the tour—a quarter century after its release. With no more records to break after Thriller, Jackson poured the pressure on himself, pushing himself and everyone around him to take things even bigger. With current interviews with folks like Quincy Jones and Martin Scorsese (who directed the BAD short film) and historical interviews with Jackson, Bad25 captures the moment in pop history. But it’s the candid moments that are most special. While the TV version was just over an hour, you can see the full 123-minute documentary coming to DVD in February, including a clip of Jackson dancing with Sheryl Crow, a section on his purchase of the Beatles’ catalog and interviews with Stevie Wonder and the Biebs.

8. Carol Channing: Larger Than Life
Director: Dori Berinstein
Carol Channing is such an endearing, sharp, funny personality that director Dori Berinstein could easily have just thrown her camera on a tripod, have the 90-year-old musical theater legend spin anecdotes for an hour and a half, and had a great documentary. Thankfully, what she made is even better. Sure, Channing still tells those stories about her life and stage career in her paradoxically inimitable-yet-oft-imitated style. But there are also heartfelt testimonies from fellow actors and personalities, most legends in their own right, about how talented and genuine she is. Carol Channing: Larger than Life is like a warm cinematic hug from Shubert Alley, not to be missed by anyone with even the remotest passing interest in Channing or Broadway history.—Dan Kaufman

7. Crossfire Hurricane
Director: Brett Morgan
Oscar-nominated documentarian Brett Morgan (On the Ropes) interviewed The Rolling Stones on the eve of the band’s 50th anniversary. “No cameras were allowed in the room,” he lets us know at the beginning of Crossfire Hurricane. But immediately we’re taken back to one of the band’s earliest tours of America, where they reigned as the bad boys to The Beatles’ cleaner image. With tons of concert clips, interview footage and backstage moments—much of which was previously unreleased—it’s an entertaining story about natural entertainers. Courtney Love liked it enough to invite Morgan to helm the upcoming Kurt Cobain documentary.

6. Neil Young: Journeys
Director: Jonathan Demme
Neil Young Journeys is director Jonathan Demme’s documentary of the last two nights of Young’s solo world tour performing at Toronto’s Massey Hall. The uncut performances, almost entirely from his 2010 album Le Noise, are interspersed with footage of Young driving around his hometown of Omemee, Ontario, in a 1956 Crown Victoria. In the car, he tells stories about his childhood, showing Demme the places where he grew up, almost all of which have been completely destroyed. Demme’s third documentary about Young assumes that his audience has a deep biographical knowledge of Young, but it’s enchanting to watch. There’s a reason he has had such a long and successful career as a musician and performer: watching him is enthralling and, at times, chill-inducing. The film offers a rare chance to experience an incredibly intimate performance from a rock-and-roll icon.—Emily Kirkpatrick

When all your favorite bands are on Twitter and Instagram, it can seem like you’ve got the inside scoop on all that goes on off stage. But there’s nothing like a well-crafted documentary to see what went into the music you love so dearly. This year saw directors like Spike Lee, Jonathan Demme and Kevin Macdonald filming some iconic music legends. But it also showed that little-known filmmakers documenting smaller acts can create just as a powerful a story. Here are the 10 Best Music Documentaries of 2012.

5. Big Easy Express
Director: Emmett Malloy
What happens when you have all the members of Mumford & Sons, Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros and Old Crow Medicine Show on an old, historic train traveling 2,800 miles throughout the American Southwest playing shows in the unlikeliest of places? Lots of jamming, a set with a high-school band and a hell of a lot of fun. If you have any interest in the Americana/folk-pop movement, Big Easy Express will give you a glimpse into its motivation, showing even those now-enormous pop stars in Mumford playing around in their roots.

4. Under African Skies
Director: Joe Berlinger
Joe Berlinger’s fascinating, immersive documentary Under African Skies celebrates the 25th anniversary of Paul Simon’s landmark Graceland album and examines the firestorm of controversy that it ignited.The narrative core of the film is Simon’s 2011 return to South Africa to stage a reunion concert and, most poignantly, a conversation between him and Dali Tambo about their opposing stances 25 years ago and where they find themselves today. To his credit, Berlinger presents all arguments impartially and leaves the viewer to come to his or her own terms with Simon’s motives and actions.—Clay Steakley

3. Marley
Director: Kevin Macdonald
It’s not entirely clear why director Kevin Macdonald decided to make a documentary about the musician Bob Marley, a cultural icon whose life has been recounted countless times through a variety of mediums. Macdonald claims it’s because he wants to understand why Marley continues to speak to legions of fans around the world. Whatever his reasons, he’s clearly up to the task. Marley offers an expansive and at times fascinating perspective on the man through interviews with his fellow former Wailers, family, and childhood friends. The film is fairly detailed concerning Marley’s songwriting and musicianship from his early ska days up through the release of Catch a Fire. After this, however, it skips through his catalogue, choosing to focus more on his personal life, conversion to Rastafarianism, the tumultuous state of Jamaican politics, and his prolific womanizing—all of which are important elements of the artist’s character.—Jonah Flicker

2. Searching for Sugar Man
Director: Malik Bendjelloul
“The Story of the Forgotten Genius” is such a well-worn formula for music documentaries that it was already being parodied more than three decades ago in This is Spinal Tap. In Searching for Sugar Man, as Swedish director Malik Bendjelloul begins to tell the story of Rodriguez—the Dylanesque folk rocker who released two apparently brilliant albums in the early 1970s, then disappeared—it appears he’s traveling a familiar road. But that road takes a sharp left turn when we learn that bootleg recordings catapulted Rodriguez to stratospheric heights of fame in apartheid-era South Africa. (When a record-store owner is asked if Rodriguez was as big as the Rolling Stones, he matter-of-factly replies “Oh, much bigger than that.”). In fact, his uncensored depictions of sex and drugs were so thrilling to South African musicians that he became the patron saint of the Afrikaner punk movement, which in turn laid the groundwork for the organized anti-apartheid movement that eventually brought the regime down. It’s just a shame that Rodriguez never lived to see it—he burned himself to death onstage in the middle of a show. Or overdosed in prison. Or shot himself alone in his apartment. Or… could he still be alive? Bendjelloul’s film manages to create an aura of mystery and suspense around a search that actually unfolded 14 years ago—a “detective documentary” set in the very recent past.—Michael Dunaway

1. Shut Up and Play the Hits
Directors: Will Lovelace and Dylan Southern
A year ago, hundreds of friends and thousands of fans converged on Madison Square Garden for LCDSoundsystem’s farewell performance. All the while, the cameras were rolling, resulting in Shut Up And Play the Hits, a documentary that follows James Murphy and the band in the days leading up to, during and after the tumultuous four-hour farewell. Directors Will Lovelace and Dylan Southern use a staggering number of cameras and crosscut liberally to provide an experience that’s arguably even better than seeing the band live (okay, maybe not quite that good but…). And the scenes outside the concert footage are equally compelling. —Michael Dunaway/Bo Moore

— articles by josh jackson for paste magazine. image from uncut.co.uk

Watch a New Doc About Magical Mystery Tour

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After the Beatles made their classic film A Hard Day’s Night, and the enjoyable if lesserHelp!, they made the strange successor Magical Mystery Tour.  This past Friday PBS aired an enjoyable new documentary about the making of the Beatles’ largely forgotten film, and you can now stream it below.

If you’re not a hardcore fan of the Beatles or ’60s experimental cinema, then this documentary, like the original film, may not be for you. Magical Mystery Tour was panned after it premiered in 1967. The documentary interviews several Britons who sat eagerly in front of their sets on Boxing Day in 1967, when it premiered; most were sorely disappointed and many were quite confused by the trippy, improvisational, free-associative film. (The movie was made during a year when the Beatles were heavily influenced by their use of LSD.)
Magical Mystery Tour never aired in the U.S., but this fall it got a new restoration. Martin Scorsese and others in the documentary make the case that Mystery Tour was underappreciated—and the film itself is not without its highlights. Among the stronger scenes: what amounts to an early music video for “I Am the Walrus” and a jaunty, old-fashioned dance number set to “Your Mother Should Know.”
Other sequences prefigure the kind of psychedelic imagery and formal play that would reach larger American audiences in 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968), the Monkees’ Head (1968), and Easy Rider(1969). (Compare especially the “Jupiter and Beyond the Infinite” sequence in 2001 with what appears at 2:25 here.)
But there’s no denying that long stretches are shabby and incoherent—interesting only because they’re by the Beatles. Why are the Beatles wearing wizard hats? Why was Paul McCartney so determined to secure “a dozen midget wrestlers”? These are magical mysteries even this documentary can’t solve.For more Beatles coverage on Brow Beat, head over to Blogging the Beatles.
–by forrest wickman for slate.com

NEW SOUNDGARDEN VIDEO DIRECTED BY DAVE GROHL

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Dave Grohl has been a busy guy. Not only has he been putting the finishing touches to his documentary on Sound City Studios, but he has also been promoting his film’s soundtrack (with a little help from an ex-Beatle). Now the Foo Fighters frontman (and Nirvana drummer) can add a Soundgarden music video to his resume.

Soundgarden revealed yesterday that they were filming a new music video for the song “By Crooked Steps” with Grohl directing. The reunited grunge group posted candid on-set photos from the shooting via Instagram, including the one seen above. Though the video’s plot hasn’t been made publicly known, the photos indicate there’s some sort of biker-gang theme occurring in the video.

It’s unknown as to how soon we’ll get to see the video for “By Crooked Steps.” Either way, though, it’s just cool to know that Grohl and Soundgarden are collaborating in some fashion.

(by zach shaw for metalinsider.net)

Tributes pour in for Ravi Shankar

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The death of the musician, described as a ‘national treasure’ by the Indian PM, is seen as a huge loss to the music world

Musicians, actors, artists and politicians across the world paid tribute toRavi Shankar, described as “a national treasure” by the Indian prime minister, Manmohan Singh, as news spread of the musician’s death in hospital near his home in California, aged 92.

Shankar, classically trained as an Indian musician but fascinated by other traditions, became as famous in the west as any rock star when he worked with groups such as the Beatles and the Rolling Stones, and played to vast audiences at legendary festivals like Monterey in 1967 and Woodstock in 1969.

Tributes came from classical and contemporary musicians, and from the Indian film industry for which he wrote many scores.

Manmohan Singh called him “a global ambassador of India‘s cultural heritage”, and said an era had passed away with him. “The nation joins me to pay tributes to his unsurpassable genius, his art, and his humility.”

The Bollywood actor Anupam Kher said: “Ravi Shankar’s sitar played for all our souls”, and the British Indian composer Nitin Sawhney described him as “my greatest childhood inspiration … I feel honoured to have worked with him.” The composer AR Rahman said: “Indian classical music has lost its chief ambassador … May God bless his soul.”

Film-maker Terry Gilliam, former member of the Monty Python team, wrote: “Ravi Shankar has left the building. 92 … a wonderful life”, andtweeted a photograph taken at Monterey, commenting “he shines, as always”.

Shankar’s wife, Sukanya, and daughter and fellow musician Anoushka, who were by his side, announced his death “with heavy hearts” on his website. He had suffered breathing and heart problems over the past year, and underwent heart valve-replacement surgery last Thursday. The family said the surgery “could have given him a new lease of life”, but added “though the surgery was successful, recovery proved too difficult”.

His last live concert was only a few weeks ago, with Anoushka, on 4 November in Long Beach, California. His daughter Norah Jones is also an acclaimed singer.

One of his most famous collaborations was with the Beatles, through George Harrison’s passion for the eastern musical tradition and determination to fuse it with western pop. When they first met, Shankar told Harrison his sitar playing on the track Norwegian Wood was “horrible”, but they became close friends.

One of the first to tweet a tribute to him was Giles Martin, son of Sir George Martin, the record producer for the Beatles. “I bet George is happy to see him again,” Martin said. “I’m very sad to hear of the death of Ravi Shankar,” he said, “a beautiful, worldly man with warmth and talent.”

The Canadian singer-songwriter KD Lang also called him a musical ambassador, and tweeted “May you have a swift and positive rebirth”.

Shankar’s Desert Island Discs selection, for BBC Radio 4 in 1971, was a shop window for his eclectic taste: his choices included Strauss, Scarlatti, Mozart, BB King, Simon & Garfunkel, the flamenco guitarist Paco Peña and Harrison’s My Sweet Lord.

He was born in 1920, brought up in Benares, India and moved with his dancer brother to Paris. He first performed as a dancer, but then spent years studying the sitar. He won an Oscar nomination for his score for the film Gandhi, and was described by the late violinist Yehudi Menuhin, who also made several recordings with him, as a genius comparable to Mozart.

“He was legend of legends,” Shivkumar Sharma, a santoor player who performed with Shankar, said in India, adding that before he took his country’s music to the world, Indian classical music was not at all well known in the west.

“It’s one of the biggest losses for the music world,” said Kartik Seshadri, sitar player and music professor at the University of California. “There’s nothing more to be said.”

 

written by:  from guardian.co.uk

Remembering the late Ravi Shankar, who introduced Indian music to western audiences.. with a little help from a friend.. George Harrison.

The Temptations – My Girl (1965)

Ravi Shankar and former Capitol Records president Alan Livingston will be honored by the Grammy Awards, it was announced today.

Ravi Shankar is among those to be given lifetime achievement honors. Also being honored are Glenn Gould, Charlie Haden, Lightnin’ Hopkins, Carole King, Patti Page and the Temptations.

View slideshow: Ravi Shankar

Shankar died Monday at 92 in Long Beach. Billboard magazine said the news of Shankar’s award was made shortly after his death was announced.

The Recording Academy, in a statement about the award, said, “As one of the world’s most renowned sitar players, three-time Grammy winner Ravi Shankar is a true ambassador for international music. As a performer, composer, teacher and writer, he is considered a pioneer in bringing Indian music to the West. With a performance career spanning more than 80 years, he has influenced a variety of musicians, including the Beatles, John Coltrane, Philip Glass and his daughters, Norah Jones and Anoushka Shankar. A humanitarian and philanthropist, in 1971 Shankar, along with George Harrison, organized the Concert for Bangladesh, which paved the way for many other fundraising charity concerts.”

Also being honored with a Trustee Award is Alan Livingston, former president of Capitol Records who helped sign the Beatles to the label. Also being honored for Trustees Award are Marilyn and Alan Bergman, Leonard and Phil Chess. Ikutaro Kakehashi and Dave Smith, plus Royer Labs will receive Technical Grammy Awards.
(articles courtesy of: The Examiner)

 

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