Saturday, July 10, 2010

Paul McCartney on Meeting John Lennon For the First Time

"John was onstage with the Quarry Men singing 'Come little darlin', come and go with me,' but he didn't know the proper words, so he just started making them up, like 'Down, down, down, down to the penitentiary.' I remember I was impressed, and I thought, They're good. That's a great band. I met them in the church hall later and I sang a few songs to them, and John was impressed because he didn't know that many. He played some songs to me and we had some fun, but the other thing I remember is that he smelled a bit drunk."

Friday, July 09, 2010

John Lennon on Meeting Paul McCartney at the Woolton Fete

"Paul met me the first day I did Gene Vincent's 'Be Bop a Lula' live onstage. Ivan Vaughan, a mutual friend of both of us, brought him to see my group, the Quarry Men. We met and we talked after the show. He was playing guitar backstage and doing 'Twenty Flight Rock' by Eddie Cochran, and I saw he had talent. After talking about all the music and artists we liked, I turned 'round, and right there at this first meeting I asked, 'Do you want to join our group?' And he looked down at his feet for a minute or so and said, 'Um, um, ah, yeah!'"

Thursday, July 08, 2010

Paul McCartney on the Cover for Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band

"These were all just cult heroes. George chose a few of his schoolmates he liked, and the rest of us said names we liked the sound of like Aldous Huxley, H.G. Wells, Johnny Weissmuller.

"Those Indian people have amazing stories. There's one called Yogananda Para Manza, who died in 1953 and left his body in an incredibly perfect state. Medical reports in Los Angeles three or four months after he died were saying this is incredible; this man hasn't decomposed yet. He was sitting there glowing because he did this sort of transcendental bit, transcended his body by planes of consciousness. He was taught by another person on the cover and he was taught by another, and it goes back to the one called Babujee who's just a little drawing looking upwards.

"You can't photograph him -- he's an agent. He puts a curse on the film. He's the all-time governor, he's been at it a long time and he's still around doing the transcending bit.

"So they're there planning the spiritual thing for us. So, if they are planning it, what a groove that he's got himself on our cover, right int he middle of the Beatles' LP cover! Normal ideas of God wouldn't have him interested in Beatles music or any pop -- it's a bit infra dig -- but obviously, if we're all here doing it, and someone's interested in us, then it's all to do with it. There's not one bit worse than another bit. So that's great, that's beautiful, that he's right on the cover with all his mates.

"Whatever it is, it's what is doing all those trees and doing us and keeping you going, which someone must be doing.

"The Yogi goes through millions of things to realise the simplest of all truths, because while you are going through this part, there's always the opposite truth. You say, 'Ah well, that's all there is to it then. It's all great, and God's looking after you.' Then someone says, 'What about a hunchback then, is that great?' And you say, 'Okay then, it's all lousy.' And this is just as true if you want to see it. But the truth is that it's neither good nor lousy, just down the middle. A state of being that doesn't have black or white, good or bad.

"We realised for the first time that someday someone would actually be holding a thing that they'd call 'The Beatles' new LP' and that normally it would just be a collection of songs or a nice picture on the cover, nothing more. So the idea was to do a complete thing that you could make what you liked of; just a little magic presentation. We were going to have a little envelope in the centre with the nutty things you can buy at Woolworths: a surprise packet."

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

George Harrison on the Beatles' Hamburg Days

"In Hamburg we got very good as a band because we had to play eight hours a night and we started building a big repertoire of some of our own songs, but mainly we did all the old rock songs. In fact, we did everything. We used to play 'Moonglow' and lots of other old songs, whatever we could come up with in order to try not to repeat too many. Of course, we had our favourites, which we'd play a couple of times in the night in the main sets when most of the crowd were there. But we got very tight as a band. And it was the period in England when it was all 'matching ties and handkerchiefs' and doing routines like the Shadows, and we weren't there for that. So we just kept playing the rock-and-roll things and the stuff from records we used to get from Brian Epstein's shop before we met him."

Beatles Covers: Elton John - Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Pete Shotton on the Day John Lennon Met Paul McCartney

"His name was Paul McCartney. We spent twenty minutes talking to him, and at first it was very reserved because John was a bit careful about meeting new people. He liked to suss them out first. He never liked to make the first move. People always had to come to him. Eventually Paul came to him by getting out his guitar and playing, I think, 'Twenty Flight Rock' by Eddie Cochran, and it was good! So, as I say, we chatted for about twenty minutes and then we split up and John and I walked home together. While we were walking, John asked me, 'What do you think of him then?' And I said, 'I think he's okay. I like him.' And John said, 'Well, should we ask him to join the band then?' And I said, 'Yeah, it's okay by me if it's okay by you.' So that was that."

Monday, July 05, 2010

Candy (1968)

Candy is a 1968 sex farce film directed by Christian Marquand based on the 1958 novel by Terry Southern and Mason Hoffenberg, from a screenplay by Buck Henry. The film satirizes pornographic stories through the adventures of its naive heroine, Candy, played by Ewa Aulin. Many established actors are featured in the film, and popular figures such as Sugar Ray Robinson, Anita Pallenberg and Florinda Bolkan appear in cameo roles.


High school student Candy (former Miss Teen Sweden Ewa Aulin) seemingly descends to Earth from space. In the relatively simple plot, she naively endures an escalating series of situations in which her oblivious allure triggers satirical porn-film-like encounters. Roger Ebert wrote, "Candy caroms from one man to another like a nympho in a pinball machine, and the characters she encounters are improbable enough to establish Terry Southern's boredom with the conventions of pornography."

In school, her father (John Astin) is also her teacher. At a poetry recital, eccentric poet MacPhisto (Richard Burton) offers Candy a ride home in his limousine. At her home, MacPhisto drunkenly waxes boisterously poetic, arousing Candy and her gardener Emanuel (Ringo Starr) into sex. Scandalized, her family sends her to private school, where she embarks on a psychedelic journey during which she meets a number of strange people, including a sex starved military general (Walter Matthau), a doctor who performs public operations (James Coburn), a hunchback (Charles Aznavour) and a fake Indian guru (Marlon Brando). As the film ends, she continues to cavort with other people plus some of the characters she met in the film, followed by her return to outer space.

Screen Debut

This was the film acting debut of then Beatle Ringo Starr, who followed with a series of movie roles through the '60s, '70s and '80s, while he continued his music career.


Candy was one of many psychedelic movies that appeared as the 1960s ended, along with Yellow Submarine, The Trip, and Head. The film opened to a poor box office result, but later became a cult classic from the psychedelic years of film. Reviews were generally positive with a few misgivings: the film rates 80% at the Rotten Tomatoes review aggregator. In a review representative of most professional reviewers at the time, Roger Ebert found it "a lot better than you might expect" but missed the "anarchy, the abandon, of Terry Southern's novel." Renata Adler decried "its relentless, crawling, bloody lack of talent."


Sunday, July 04, 2010

Paul McCartney on Learning to Play Trumpet and Guitar

"My dad was a pretty musical guy, and one day he bought me a trumpet. I started playing around and eventually learned 'When the Saints Come Marching In' and a couple of other standards. But I couldn't make my lip do quite what it was supposed to, and I realised that I wouldn't be able to sing if I was playing the trumpet, and I liked singing. So I decided to try the guitar, but it was a right-handed one because they hardly ever made left-handed guitars then. I couldn't figure out how to play it correctly. Eventually I turned the strings around and finally it felt good and I could play."