Episode #32 – ‘Girl – Anatomy of a Song’

Lennon the storyteller, the cynic, the victim—of his own insecurities and desires, controlled by the woman of his dreams…and nightmares.

The last song recorded for The Beatles’ Rubber Soul album, ‘Girl’ is one of its main composer’s most intriguing, sophisticated, nuanced lyrical efforts—brought to life by a young conversationalist’s charismatic, world-weary voice, wrapped inside tits, sighs and Greek-style guitar. It’s an amazing track. And it’s inspired this episode’s multiple takes on its two protagonists.

The Music: recordings of ‘Girl’ by…

  • The Beatles
  • Tiny Tim with Brave Combo
  • DJ Style featuring KSS
  • Medley: Kai Hyttinen (Finnish) / Dalida (Italian) / Johnny Hallyday (French) / Peppino di Capri (Italian) / Ovelha (Portuguese)
  • SaRachel

Episode #31 – ‘Sex, Love and Misogyny – The Beatles in Song’

The Beatles’ songs often have such creativity, depth and nuance. Lyrics open to multiple interpretations, married to music that simultaneously captures and conveys the ‘feel’ of those lyrics.

Here, together with sociologist Candy Leonard, author of the book ‘Beatleness: How the Beatles and Their Fans Remade the World’, we discuss the songwriters’ journey: from the days of sexual innuendo in their lyrics to those, just a few years later, of overt references – while transitioning from misogyny to feminism with love thrown into the mix.

The Music

  • Girl
  • Getting Better
  • Happiness is a Warm Gun
  • Why Don’t We Do it in the Road
  • Don’t Let Me Down
  • I’ve Got a Feeling
  • I Saw Her Standing There
  • Please Please Me
  • She Loves You
  • I’ll Get You
  • All I’ve Got to Do
  • You Can’t Do That
  • I’ll Cry Instead
  • Run for Your Life
  • She’s a Woman
  • When I Get Home
  • Another Girl
  • You’re Going to Lose That Girl
  • The Night Before
  • Day Tripper
  • Lovely Rita
  • Yer Blues
  • Oh! Darling
  • She’s So Heavy
  • Woman is the Nigger of the World
  • Hi, Hi, Hi
  • Woman

Episode #30 – ‘It’s All Too Much – David Stark, the Beatles Zelig’

Sitting directly behind—and chatting with—The Beatles at the Yellow Submarine premiere, also gatecrashing that for The Magic Christian, photographed behind John and Yoko walking into court following their pot bust, attending The Rolling Stones Rock and Roll Circus, asking Ringo out for a drink, eating Aunt Mimi’s egg and chips… and also attending a couple of Swinging Sixties Beatles concerts.

These are among the “he did what?” stories recounted by David Stark in his eye-opening, sometimes jaw-dropping, I-was-there memoir, It’s All Too Much—Adventures of a Teenage Beatles Fan in the ’60s and Beyond. He was a kid with nerve and know-how who manufactured his own luck; now he’s a music biz veteran with tales that might be considered tall if he didn’t have the photos to back them up. (He does.)

This guy’s The Beatle Zelig. And now he’s popped up on our show.

The Music

  • ‘It’s All Too Much’
  • ‘Lovely Rita’
  • ‘Hey Bulldog’
  • ‘Yer Blues’
  • ‘Gold Songs’ – written and co produced by David Stark (drums); featuring Ben Champniss (vocals), Dzal Martin (slide guitar), John Hamilton (bass, keyboards, co-production) and Phil Nelson (backing vocals).

The Book

https://thisdayinmusicbooks.com/product/its-all-too-much-by-david-stark

Episode #29 – ‘Paul McCartney’s Vocal Journey’

It’s one of the greatest rock voices of all time: alternately melodic, raw, sweet and supercharged while also extremely versatile and infused with different characters. Paul McCartney’s lead, harmony and backing vocals have graced tender ballads, balls-to-the-walls rockers and almost everything else in between. But how did his talents in that regard develop and expand down the years? What has caused the vocal deterioration: insufficient technique, too much weed, old age or undisclosed health issues? And what, if anything, can be done about it?

The answers to the last two questions—provided in our interview with legendary voice teacher to the stars Seth Riggs and his wife/vocal technician Margareta—may surprise you. Heart lead guitarist Craig Bartock and acclaimed music critic/musicologist/author Allan Kozinn are our co-hosts.

For info on Seth and Margareta Riggs, go to theriggsvocalstudio.com

The Music

  • Oh! Darling
  • That’s When Your Heartaches Begin
  • Any Time at All/A Hard Day’s Night
  • I Saw Her Standing There
  • Hippy Hippy Shake/Ooh! My Soul/Long Tall Sally
  • All My Loving
  • Something/Nowhere Man
  • You Won’t See Me
  • Till There Was You
  • I’ve Just Seen a Face/I’m Down/Yesterday
  • She’s Leaving Home
  • Fixing a Hole
  • Helter Skelter/Why Don’t We Do It in the Road?
  • I Will/Lady Madonna
  • Besame Mucho/Golden Slumbers
  • Rocky Raccoon/Honey Pie/Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey
  • Monkberry Moon Delight
  • Too Many People
  • I’ve Had Enough
  • Maybe I’m Amazed
  • New
  • Lonesome Town
  • Sing the Changes
  • Freedom
  • Hey Jude
  • My Valentine
  • Cut Me Some Slack
  • Goodbye

Episode #28 — ‘Along for the Ride – Barry Chang’s Memories of The Beatles’ First Trip to Hamburg’

When, on Monday, 15th August, 1960, The Beatles left Liverpool en route to their first stint in Hamburg, West Germany, the five of them—John, Paul, George, Stu and the newly recruited Pete—were joined by five others: their manager/agent Allan Williams, Trinidadian calypsonian Harold Philips (a.k.a. Lord Woodbine), Austrian translator Herr Steiner, Allan’s wife Beryl… and her 19-year-old brother Barry Chang. 60 years later, Barry shares his memories of that fateful trip: in a van, on a boat and inside the Indra Club during The Beatles’ inaugural week there.

It was Barry who snapped the now-iconic photo of the travellers, mid-journey, posing at Holland’s Arnhem Oosterbeek War Cemetery, in front of a memorial bearing the legend Their Names Liveth For Evermore. Half of them have now passed on; he’s here to recount how his routine vacation became the stuff of legend.

The Music

  • I’ll Follow the Sun
  • The One After 909
  • I’m Gonna Sit Right Down and Cry (Over You)
  • Roll Over Beethoven
  • Youngblood
  • Ain’t She Sweet
  • That’s All Right (Mama)
  • Nothin’ Shakin’ (but the Leaves on the Trees)
  • Catswalk

Episode #27 – ‘Post-Fab Frolics – The Beatles on TV 1967-1970’

After they transitioned from a performing group to a more experimental, studio-based band, The Beatles also changed how they utilised television. No longer needing to appear on variety shows—and in comedy skits—to charm audiences and promote their records, they largely relied on videos to achieve the same. And they also used the ‘box’ more for messaging—about peace, love and spirituality… as well as about their business ventures.

Nevertheless, there was still plenty of humour and some legendary small-screen performances: from ‘All You Need is Love’ on the global ‘Our World’ broadcast to ‘Hey Jude’ on the David Frost show—sandwiching their own critically-lambasted made-for-TV movie. The sequel to BN Episode 21, ‘The Beatles on TV 1962-1966’, this show transports us from the heady ‘Summer of Love’ days of ‘Sgt, Pepper’ to the public announcement of the group’s demise—by which time individual appearances were the norm and the world seemed to be a more serious place.

Episode #26 – ‘Some Other Guys – The Beatlesque Recordings’

There have been fakers and imitators, tributes and rip-offs, but no one sounds like The Beatles on record—including the ex-Beatles. Nevertheless, some efforts have come closer than others, the most successful being those that have managed to capture the group’s essence rather than just replicate its sound while matching the standard of song material. In this episode, we dive into the good, the bad and the ugly—including those recordings which, bearing zero resemblance to the Fab Four, were promoted by bootleggers during the 1970s to fill the vacuum created by all of those unfounded Beatles-reunion rumours.

The Music

  • ‘Cheese and Onions’ – The Rutles
  • ‘Can’t Get it Out of My Head’ – ELO
  • ‘Because’ – Julian Lennon
  • ‘Have You Heard the Word?’ – The Fut
  • ‘Return to Pepperland’ – Paul McCartney
  • ‘When We Was Fab’ – George Harrison
  • ‘Lies’ – The Knickerbockers
  • ‘The Girl I Love’ – The Five Shits
  • ‘Pay Attention to Me’ – The Tikis
  • ‘Talkin’ About the Good Times’ – Pretty Things
  • ‘The L.S. Bumble Bee’ – Peter Cook and Dudley Moore
  • ‘Black is Black’ – Lord Sitar
  • ‘Carousel of Love’ – Peter Best
  • ‘So Much in Love’ – McGough & McGear
  • ‘We Are The Moles’ – The Moles
  • ‘Peace of Mind’ – unknown
  • ‘Frenzy and Distortion’ – Ravi Shankar
  • ‘Pink Litmus Paper Shirt’ – unknown
  • ‘No Matter What’ – Badfinger
  • ‘Come and Get It’ – Badfinger
  • ‘Sun in Her Hand’ – Blond
  • ‘Coz I Luv You’ – Slade
  • ‘Just a Smile’ – Pilot
  • ‘Neanderthal Man’ – Hotlegs
  • ‘I Must Be in Love’ – The Rutles
  • ‘Calling Occupants of Interplanetary Craft’ – Klaatu
  • ‘She Still Loves Him’ – Jellyfish
  • ‘Sittin’ Here in Silence (On My Own)’ – Oasis
  • ‘Costafine Town’ – Splinter

Episode #25 – ‘Help! – The Beatles’ Seminal Pop/Pot Movie’

The Fab Four’s second film, shot in vivid colour, captured a very different group demeanor to that in A Hard Day’s Night. For that first effort they’d been pumped up on pills; this time around, they were laid back on the “herbal jazz cigarettes”. And director Dick Lester, together with cinematographer David Watkin, conveyed the blissed-out vibe via stunning photography, innovative graphics and offbeat comedy.

The result, at the time widely regarded as inferior to its predecessor, is now acclaimed as a pop-art gem that, very much of its time, also helped to define its era while serving as a wide-ranging source of influence and inspiration.

Towering above all, of course, were those personalities and their music…

  • ‘Help!’
  • ‘The Night Before’
  • ‘You’ve Got to Hide Your Love Away’
  • ‘I Need You’
  • ‘Another Girl’
  • ‘You’re Going to Lose That Girl’
  • ‘Ticket to Ride’
  • Selections from Ken Thorne’s orchestral score

Episode #24 – ‘Walking on Thin Ice – Did Yoko Really Help to Break Up The Beatles?’

50 years after The Beatles’ demise, Yoko Ono is still portrayed online and by the media as the quintessential witch who broke up a famous relationship and ruined a great thing. But did she really earn this reputation? And, if not, should she shoulder at least some of the blame for the group’s demise?

A multi-layered topic, it sparks a lively conversation and clashing opinions, punctuated by The Beatles’ own recollections and a predictably eclectic collection of tracks.

The Music

  • ‘No Bed for Beatle John’
  • ‘The Ballad of John and Yoko’ (Take 7)
  • ‘Yer Blues’/‘Whole Lotta Yoko’ (The Rolling Stones Rock and Roll Circus)
  • ‘Who Has Seen the Wind?’
  • Beatles/Yoko Jam (Jan. 10, 1969)
  • ‘What’s the New Mary Jane’
  • ‘Remember Love’
  • ‘Don’t Worry Kyoko’ (The Toronto Rock and Roll Revival)

Episode #23 – ‘Crying, Waiting, Hoping – The Beatles’ Decca Audition’

The music, the inspirations, the motivations, the performances, the reservations, the fallout… as well as the cloak-and-dagger story behind how the session tape was bootlegged. Here’s what really happened behind the doors of Decca’s Broadhurst Gardens studio in northwest London—as well as in altogether more covert circumstances on the other side of the Atlantic more than a decade later.

The Music

  • ‘Money (That’s What I Want)’ – Barrett Strong, The Beatles
  • ‘The Sheik of Araby’ – Joe Brown, The Beatles
  • ‘Memphis, Tennessee’ – Chuck Berry, The Beatles
  • ‘Three Cool Cats’ – The Coasters, The Beatles
  • ‘Sure to Fall (In Love with You)’ – Carl Perkins, The Beatles
  • ‘September in the Rain’ – Dinah Washington, The Beatles
  • ‘Take Good Care of My Baby’ – Bobby Vee, The Beatles
  • ‘Till There Was You’ – Peggy Lee, The Beatles
  • ‘Crying, Waiting, Hoping’ – Buddy Holly, The Beatles
  • ‘To Know Her is to Love Her’ – The Teddy Bears, The Beatles
  • ‘Besame Mucho’ – The Coasters, The Beatles
  • ‘Searchin’’ – The Coasters, The Beatles
  • ‘Like Dreamers Do’ – The Beatles, The Applejacks
  • ‘Hello Little Girl’ – The Beatles, The Fourmost
  • ‘Love of the Loved’ – Cilla Black, The Beatles
  • ‘How Do You Do It?’ – The Beatles