Saturday, 19 April 2014

Upcoming new underground Shea releases

Upcoming new release of the 1965 Shea Stadium material sounds promising. LP version depicted.
The word is out that the underground (= bootleg) label HMC (His Master's Choice) is due to release a number of interesting new Beatles products in the near future and that it will all start with a Shea Stadium film in the same quality as the few clips Apple let us see in their Anthology DVDs. We are talking about two different products here:
  • A "HMC Gazette" with a DVD + CD
  • A 12" Vinyl LP + CD package with a colour poster
Rumoured is that the DVD contains the unreleased 2005 stereo remaster of the film commissioned by Apple. The audio contents are not known at the time of writing. HMC (formerly known as Yellow Dog) is primarily known for audio only bootlegs, but they recently released their first DVD (the Delaney & Bonnie concert from Copenhagen), so this new Shea will be their second DVD release. Further DVD releases of rare Beatles stuff is expected from the company in the next few months.

Due to the fact that "The Beatles At Shea Stadium" never has been released in an official capacity except for a few clips from the film used in documentaries, the film keeps being exploited by various bootleggers as well as being traded among fans. The undoctored soundtrack was leaked to the Beatlesfan community a few years ago and has been frequently used as a secondary soundtrack to bootleg DVDs of the film.
video
A clip of "Dizzy Miss Lizzy" was used to promote a collection of Capitol Albums in 2007.

Friday, 18 April 2014

The Japan box - press release

Banner
Here's the official press release in English for the upcoming 5 CD boxed set of Japanese Beatles albums we announced yesterday:

A treasure box which enables us to have a virtual experience of Beatlemania in Japan

In January 2014, commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Beatles conquering America, “THE U.S. ALBUMS”, a 13 CD box-set of the US Capitol albums, was released. Within six months after that, this time “THE JAPAN BOX” is released, commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Beatles’ debut in Japan. “THE JAPAN BOX” will be a precious present for Japanese fans, especially the ones who have been fascinated by the group since the early 1960s.

The Japan Box
The release of the Beatles’ archive materials has been increasing recently. The starting point was the fall 2009, when 16 CD box-set “THE BEATLES BOX” was released and completed the digital remastering of all the 213 officially recording songs.

The current of such archive releases was as follows: As for audio material, a reproduction of 7-inch vinyl “Love Me Do” (2012), the vinyl LP edition of “THE BEATLES BOX” (2012), a compilation from the BBC radio sessions “ON AIR - LIVE AT THE BBC VOL.2” (2013) were released. New reissues by using the 2009 remaster also have been continued, such as “THE BEATLES 1962-1966” (2010), “THE BEATLES 1967-1970” (2010), “THE BEATLES 1” (2011), “YELLOW SUBMARINE SONGTRACK” (2011). It looks as if the 2009 remaster became the new standard of the Beatles’ sound.

These remastered CDs were often linked together with the digital download edition of them. In 2010, iTunes version of “THE BEATLES 1962-1966”, “THE BEATLES 1967-1970”, and iTunes only “SPECIAL DIGITAL THE BEATLES BOX”, featuring the concert film “LIVE AT THE WASHINGTON COLISEUM 1964”, were released. In 2011, “LOVE” (mash-up album), “THE BEATLES ANTHOLOGY” (trilogy album) and “THE BEATLES 1” (best hit album) all became available on iTunes. Also “THE BEATLES USB BOX”, 24 bit apple-shaped USB drive, was released in the same year.

Materials only by digital download are increasing these days. Such examples are “ANTHOLOGY HIGHLIGHTS” (2011), the digest of “THE BEATLES ANTHOLOGY” trilogy, “TOMORROW NEVER KNOWS” (2012), a compilation of heavy and psychedelic rock numbers, and “THE BEATLES BOOTLEG RECORDINGS 1963” (2013), a collection of unreleased studio recordings. The remastered album “LOVE” (2011) featured iTunes only bonus tracks, the “LOVE” versions of “Girl” and “The Fool On The Hill”. Thus, the release of the Beatles’ archive materials is progressing steadily and in multiform way.

As for the visual material, the newly remastered “MAGICAL MYSTERY TOUR” (2012), Blu-ray version of “HELP!” (2013) were released and became the definitive edition of these movies.
Looking back upon the releases after 2009, I can say that “THE JAPAN BOX” is equally meaningful as “THE U.S. BOX”, and is the best “bonus track” for Japanese fans.

Since the Beatles’ albums were released on CD for the first time in 1987, only the UK albums and the US “MAGICAL MYSTERY TOUR” have become standard and been considered as “canon”. But before 1987, a lot of original compilation LPs were produced worldwide, including Japan. Not only LPs, but also singles and EPs with original content had been produced in countries like Japan and the US. From February 1964 (when the Japanese debut album “BEATLES!” was released) to September 1965 (when the Japanese sixth album “HELP!” was released), 27 singles and 8 EPs had been originally compiled in Japan. Therefore many Japan-only hits were produced. These records released by the Japanese Odeon labels are still in very high profile among record collectors all over the world.

“THE JAPAN BOX” contains the first five titles of the Japanese original LPs reproduced as CDs. The titles have been out of print since the Beatles’ CDs first came out in 1987, so it is significant that they are now released on CD for the first time. Especially, reproducing the album “BEATLES!”, which has very strong contents and is one of the most well-known compilation LPs in the world, and “A HARD DAY’S NIGHT”, which has the Japanese original cover, is quite meaningful.

A Hard Day's Night
“THE JAPAN BOX” uses 2009 remaster sound. In particular, the titles “BEATLES!”, “BEATLES No.2” and “BEATLES No.5” are using 2009 mono remaster. As for packaging, all five titles are made of paper sleeve, reproduce even “obi” strips (especially legendary “half-obi”) and supplement posters. It’s a real “treasure box” that satisfies the curiosity of enthusiastic fans.

Kunihiko Fujimoto, April 2014

Help!
Interestingly, the one release which strays from using the 2009 Remastered versions is the final CD in the boxed set, "Help!" in stereo. In the release notes, this album uses both the 2009 remastered version as sound source, but also the original stereo mix.
As we know, the remastered "Help!" from the Beatles in Stereo box from 2009 replicated George Martin's 1987 remix of the album, whereas a remastered version of the original 1965 stereo mix was a bonus included with the remastered Beatles in Mono 2009 boxed set. Will the new Japanese "Help!" CD be a mixture of these two different mixes of the album?

The new boxed set is also listed at Amazon.co.jp but not yet at the official Beatles store in Japan.

Thursday, 17 April 2014

Beatles CD boxed set for Japan

A 5 CD boxed set is due out in Japan
A 5-CD boxed set of original Japanese Beatles albums is due out in Japan on June 25th. The albums are: "Meet The Beatles" in mono, "The Beatles' Second Album" in mono, "A Hard Day's Night" in stereo, "Beatles no. 5" in mono and "Help! in stereo".
Meet The Beatles
The albums will have audio from the 2009 UK remasters (although it's indicated that the "Help!" album may have some unique stereo mixes), but the sleeves will be made like miniatures of these original Japanese Beatles albums.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014
Limited Edition. Catalogue no. UICY-76429/33
Estimated price ¥ 14,000
A one song promotional CD has been produced using the Japanese single-jacket for "I Want To Hold Your Hand".

The CDs will not be sold separately.
100 page Japanese booklet
Albums commentary / Japanese bilingual lyrics


Beatles! / Meet The Beatles

Japan Original Release Date: April 5, 1964
Mono (2009 Remastered sound source)

Tracks:
1. I Want To Hold Your Hand
2. She Loves You
3. From Me To You
4. Twist and Shout
5. Love Me Do
6. Baby It's You
7. Don't Bother Me
8. Please Please Me
9. I Saw Her Standing There
10. PS I Love You
11. Little Child
12. All My Loving
13. Hold Me Tight
14. Please Mister Postman


Beatles No.2 / Second Album


Japan Original Release Date: June 5, 1964
Mono (2009 Remastered sound source)

Tracks:
1. Can't Buy Me Love
2. Do You Want To Know A Secret
3. Thank You Girl
4. A Taste Of Honey
5. It Won't Be Long
6. I Wanna Be Your Man
7. There's A Place
8. Roll Over Beethoven
9. Misery
10. Boys
11. Devil In Her Heart
12. Not A Second Time
13. Money
14. Till There Was You


A Hard Day's Night


Japan Original Release Date: September 5, 1964
Stereo (2009 Remastered sound source)
Tracks:
1. A Hard Day's Night
2. I Should Have Known Better
3. If I Fell
4. I'm Happy Just To Dance With You
5. And I Love Her
6. Tell Me Why
7. Can't Buy Me Love
8. Any Time At All
9. I'll Cry Instead
10. Things We Said Today
11. When I Get Home
12. You Can't Do That
13. I'll Be Back


Beatles No.5


Japan Original Release Date: May 5, 1965
Mono (2009 Remastered sound source)
Tracks:
1. Long Tall Sally
2. Sie Liebt Dich
3. Anna
4. Matchbox
5. You Really Got A Hold On Me
6. She's A Woman
7. Ask Me Why
8. I Feel Fine
9. Komm, Gib Mir Deine Hand
10. Chains
11. Slow Down
12. All I've Got To Do
13. I Call Your Name
14. This Boy


Help!

Japan Original Release Date: September 15, 1965 
Stereo (2009 Remastered sound source / original stereo mix)
Tracks:
1. Help!
2. The Night Before
3. You've Got To Hide Your Love Away
4. I Need You
5. Another Girl
6. You're Going To Lose That Girl
7. Ticket To Ride
8. Act Naturally
9. It's Only Love
10. You Like Me Too Much
11. Tell Me What You See
12. I've Just Seen A Face
13. Yesterday
14. Dizzy Miss Lizzy

Source: Universal Music Japan

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Patti Boyd in Norway

This image of George walking in the snow was selected as the main photo for the exhibition
A couple of weeks ago, Patti Boyd visited Norway for the first time, to open an exhibition of her photos and some memorabilia from her collection, at the Rockheim museum in my birth town of Trondheim. I went there, had a few words with her and a couple of autographs before enjoying the exhibition. Here's a few photos, not of her pictures but of some of the sixties dresses and outfits she had brought along to exhibit. Some of these are from the Apple boutique and some were designed by Marijke of The Fool.





In an interview, Patti explained that the outfits are a bit small these days...
My conversation with Patti was rather uneventful and fruitless, because we didn't really connect as people. However, a friend of mine managed to ask her about the song "Bye Bye Love" from George Harrison's Dark Horse album: Was she and Eric Clapton involved in the recording? Patti confirmed to him that they had indeed added some percussion to the track.

The exhibition runs until 31. August.

Website: Rockheim

Monday, 14 April 2014

British Pathé Newsreels

Yesterday, British Pathé published an unprecedented 42 Beatles related news clips on their YouTube channel, totalling 2 hours and 44 minutes! We have arranged these into this playlist for your convenience:




  1. Selected Originals - The Beatles Come To Town - Technicolor & Techniscope (1963) 24:26
  2. The Beatles Come To Town - Two Stories - Technicolor & Techniscope (1963) 13:04
  3. Selected Originals - The Beatles Come To Town - Technicolor & Techniscope (1963) 5:13
  4. Selected Originals - The Beatles Come To Town - Technicolor & Techniscope (1963) 2:08
  5. THE BEATLES COME TO TOWN - Technicolor & Techniscope 6:17
  6. Beatles Singing in Concert and Backstage with the Fab Four (1963) 6:02
  7. Selected Originals - The Beatles Come To Town (1963) 3:05
  8. Let's All Be Beatles! (1963) 1:18
  9. Beatles Off To America (1964) 1:21
  10. Beatles Conquer America (1964) 1:46
  11. The Beatles Arrive In New York (1964) 1:01
  12. The Beatles Arrive In Washington (1964) 2:04
  13. Beatles Welcome Home (1964) 5:46
  14. Beatlemania Arrives (1964) 2:30
  15. Selected Originals - Beatles Welcome Home (1964) 10:37
  16. Beatles Take Over Holland (1964) 4:10
  17. The Beatles Leave For Australia (1964) 3:21
  18. The Beatles Arrive In New Zealand (1964) 2:14
  19. The Beatles Arrive Back In Australia (1964) 0:40
  20. The Beatles Wet Reception In Sydney (1964) 3:10
  21. The Beatles Performing In Sydney (1964) 9:50
  22. Beatles Conquer Aussies (1964) 2:23
  23. The Beatles A Hit In Australia (1964) 1:40
  24. Beatles Get Show Biz Top Award (1964) 4:21
  25. Selected Originals - Beatles Get Show Biz Top Award (1964) 0:07
  26. Duke Meets Beatles (1964) 1:35
  27. Hairstyles From Grandma To Beatles (1964) 1:13
  28. And The World Listened (1964) 10:04
  29. Beatles At Palace (1965) 1:14
  30. Beatles at the Palace 1:17
  31. Beatles Win Caroline Award (1965) 0:52
  32. Ringo Starr Visits Maternity Hospital To See His Baby (1965) 1:37
  33. Guess Who! (1965) 1:21
  34. The Beatles In Germany (1966) 10:22
  35. Beatles Like Home Best (1966) 0:50
  36. Beatles Boutique Aka Beatles' Apple Boutique Opens (1967) 1:20
  37. Rishikesh - Beatles With The Maharishi (1968) 2:25
  38. Revolution Fashion Show Aka Fashion Show At The Revolution (1968) 1:04
  39. John Lennon's Caravan (1967) 0:57
  40. Beatle Paul Weds (1969) 1:00
  41. John Lennon's Lithos On Show In Holland (1970) 1:51
  42. Review Of The Sixties (1970) 6:26

Saturday, 12 April 2014

"Save Us" new single from "New"

The Queenie Eye single
It looks like Paul McCartney's album "New" gets a new single release in the form of the song "Save Us".  This will be the third single from the album, following the title track and "Queenie Eye".

The "New" single
Paul McCartney.com is having a competition where you can participate in the video for "Save Us". Of course, these days singles are no longer available to the general public in a physical format, they are merely sent out as promotional discs to radio stations. But you can always pick them up at ebay.

The physical "Save Us" disc was distributed to radio stations in February 

Paul McCartney and his band performing "Save Us" at BBC Radio 6 Music Live

The digital release of the track was on 31 March 2014, although it had already been available since the album release.

Friday, 11 April 2014

The three Hello Goodbye videos

On the 10th of November 1967, The Beatles filmed three promotional films for Hello Goodbye at the Saville Theatre in London. Directed by Paul, film no. 1 saw the Beatles dressed up in their Sgt Pepper uniforms, and Ringo's drum kit was rather small. For film no. 2 they wore their everyday clothes, and film no 3 was put together of outtakes from the first two, with the Beatles hamming it up for the camera. Here's a snippet of film no. 3, courtesy of the Beatles' own YouTube channel:



The full length video of this is very rare, but we found a copy over at Dailymotion - in a not so good quality. The other two are more common, thanks to having been aired more frequently on TV. Number 1 was shown on Norwegian TV once in the eighties.
But we had a hard time finding the number 1 video on the internet, in fact we came up empty handed. It looks like most uploaders go for the Anthology edit, which is actually a fourth version - but more on that later.
Video no. 2 was distributed to TV stations when the Red and Blue albums were released on CD for the first time, in 1993. Unfortunately, Apple messed with the films, adding a blue border around the videos from the blue album and a red border for songs from the red album. Another version was borderless, but featured a rather big Apple logo on the screen.



Like we mentioned earlier, Apple also made a fourth version in the nineties, which was shown on the Anthology TV series. This was merely video no. 1 until the coda, then it switched to footage from video no. 3. In number 1, the coda just had those dancing girls, dancing until the song ends. For some reason, the Anthology edit also rendered the opening footage of the film in black and white, but not so in the version below.


If the rumoured "1"- themed Beatles music video compilation gets a release this autumn, it'll be interesting to find out which of the videos they will include. A completist would want them all, at least the first three.  

Wednesday, 9 April 2014

A Hard Day's Night in Beatles store

The U.S.A. dual format edition
The Beatles' Facebook page promoted the upcoming new edition of the "A Hard Day's Night" film yesterday, and the product is now available for preordering over at the official U.S.A. Beatles store. They have it for $39.95 (dual format) or $19.95 (DVD). The DVD release will be region coded to only play in U.S.A. DVD players, unless you have a DVD player without a region lock. Still no word about a European version, though - and nothing on TheBeatles.com.

McCartney announces U.S. dates

Poster for the initial U.S. dates
Yesterday, Paul McCartney announced four concert dates in the U.S.A. for June and July. More are likely to follow. So we guess the European dates won't be until after the summer.
Ringo Starr is also touring North America in June and July, which means that Americans can catch two Beatles' concerts during the same week. Three of McCartney's announced concert dates are on days when Ringo and his All Starr Band are not performing, so they will be able to attend each other's concerts...

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

The Beatles in the Netherlands

On the canals of Amsterdam. Photo: © Eddy Posthuma de Boer
"Yeah! yeah! yeah!: Twee dagen met The Beatles in de Polder" is a new book featuring Eddy Posthuma de Boer's photos of the Beatles in the Netherlands.
On June 4, 1964 the first Beatles World Tour started in Denmark. After that, the band came for two days to visit the Netherlands, before travelling to the Far East and Oceania. The group was not complete, as Ringo Starr was ill, and Jimmie Nicol was the replacement drummer. Still, the Netherlands was captured by Beatlemania. There was total madness in the country. Sixties Photographer Eddy Posthuma de Boer was present and took some ​​legendary photos that only recently have come to light. You can see some of the photos here.
The 56 page book also features an introduction by Hugh Skipper and text by Cees Nooteboom.

The book



Tuesday, 1 April 2014

McCartney: New "New"

There's a new "New" coming.
Universal Music in Japan is to release a new edition of Paul McCartney's 2013 album "New", with a bonus DVD, "NEW - 2014 Japan Tour Edition". The CD will be the same edition as previously released album, including once again the Japan-only bonus track “Struggle”.
The DVD will be 80 minutes long and the contents are:

The Canadian documentary was also released on DVD last year in an exclusive CD+DVD package from the Target stores in USA. The "Something New" documentary has been previously shown on TV, it premiered on Palladia and VH1 Classic in December.
The new Japanese tour edition of "New" will be released on May 7th, just ten days before McCartney's concert in Tokyo.
Source: Universal Music Japan

Monday, 31 March 2014

Abbey Road potatoes

© Copyright: McCain. Photographer: Erik Almås

The famous Abbey Road photo is still being exploited by advertising agencies, this time it's for McCain's potato crisps in the UK. Whoever okayed this poster?

McCain is releasing an outdoor and print campaign that spoofs one of the most iconic images in British music history. The ads, created by BMB, show four farmers striding across a potato field in a scene reminiscent of The Beatles’ Abbey Road cover. The work stresses that McCain uses only British potatoes. It was written by Tom Sillars, art directed by Dani Asensio and photographed by Erik Almas through Trayler & Trayler. Media was handled by PHD

Wonderwall relaunched

Wonderwall on Blu-ray
Shout Factory has relaunched the 1968 psychedelic movie "Wonderwall" on Blu-ray. George Harrison composed and recorded the incidental music for the film, and Shout Factory is using this as their main selling point in their campaign.
Set in swinging 1960's London, Wonderwall is the story of a reclusive professor Oscar Collins (Jack MacGowran) who becomes infatuated with his next door neighbors, the beautiful model Penny Lane (Jane Birkin) and her Svengalian photographer boyfriend (Iain Quarrier). When the professor attempts to rescue Penny from an overdose following a quarrel with her boyfriend, he enters the magical realm of the Wonderwall on a transformative journey, and returns to his laboratory a changed man.

Contents:
• Original theatrical version as well as the re-edited Directors Cut, featuring music from the original Wonderwall session never included in the original theatrical release
• 32-page book from director Joe Massot featuring extensive essays, historical analysis and production history
• All-new print
• High-definition restoration by the Pinewood Studios Film Restoration Team

The film is presented in NTSC Widescreen Aspect ratio 1:85:1

Special Features
• Publicity Gallery
• Publicity Text
• Biographies
• The Comic Art of Jack MacGowran
• Reflections on Love
• The Art of Marijke
• Eric Clapton - Skiing
• John Lennon Poem
• The Remo Four Music Video
• Theatrical Trailer
• Outtakes



Shout Factory is also promoting the movie by putting out clips from it on YouTube. The movie was released on March 25th.  George Harrison's soundtrack album "Wonderwall Music" is considered his first solo album, and was released in 1968 on Apple Records. George released two albums while he was still with the Beatles, Wonderwall Music in 1968 and the experimental Electronic Sound in 1969 on Apple's subsidiary, Zapple Records. Harrison was also present when the film was screened at the Cannes film festival. For a list of Beatles- and related films on Blu-ray, visit this site.

Tuesday, 25 March 2014

A Hard Day's Night World Premiere

Nudge nudge wink wink
Film: A HARD DAY’S NIGHT (1964)
Time: Saturday April 12th at 6:30 PM
Movie Theatre: TCL Chinese IMAX, Hollywood, Los Angeles
Description: When the Beatles made their feature debut 50 years ago, nobody expected much. The rock 'n' roll musical had been around for a decade without producing many great films. A HARD DAY'S NIGHT changed all that. Directed kinetically by Richard Lester, the film captured a day in the life of the teen heartthrobs in high style. Writer Alun Owen toured with The Beatles for weeks to capture their characters and speaking styles. Lester let the Fab Four throw in a few improvisations and surrounded them with adept comic actors like Wilfred Brambell as Paul McCartney's grandfather and Victor Spinetti as a hassled television director. Made for $560,000, A HARD DAY'S NIGHT grossed ten times that in the U.S. alone, making it one of the most profitable films of all time. The album shot to number one instantly, which is hardly a surprise considering that the picture introduced The Beatles classics "All My Loving," "Can't Buy Me Love," "And I Love Her," “Tell Me Why" and the title tune, which was written by John Lennon in one night. World premiere restoration from the original negative and presented in collaboration with Janus films.
Director: Richard Lester
86 min.
Digital
In attendance: Alec Baldwin, Don Was
Tickets