Saturday, June 20, 2009

Fab Dads

Just a quick blog for Father's Day . . .and for the first day of summer.

Not only were all four Beatles parents themselves, John and Paul each had fathers that were involved in musical endeavors.

Here's a cross section of songs that features The Beatles, a couple of "Fab" dads, and various "Fab" offspring. Since it's also the longest day of the year, note all the references to the "Sun", as well as the "Sons" (and daughters). And remember - the "Father" one travels, the less one knows !

1 The Beatles - Here Comes The Sun / The Inner Light (Transition) -
(from "Love") produced by George Martin and his son, Giles.
2 The Country Hams (Paul with Chet Atkins and Floyd Cramer)-
Walking In The Park With Eloise (music written by Paul's father)
3 The Beatles - Eleanor Rigby
(featuring "Father" McKenzie-originally Father McCartney)
4 Julian Lennon - When I'm 64 (TV commercial - Written by Paul for his father's birthday)
5 The Beatles - Hey Jude (written by Paul for Julian)
6 Freddie Lennon -That's My Life
7 John Lennon - Mother (from "Live In New York City")
8 Freddie Lennon -The Next Time You Feel Important
9 The Beatles - Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds (inspired by one of Julian's drawings)
10 Julian Lennon & Chuck Berry - Johnny B. Goode (from "Hail! Hail! Rock and Roll")
11 Julian Lennon - Too Late For Goodbyes
12 Sean's "In The Sky" (from "Lennon Anthology")
13 Sean Lennon - Into The Sun
14 Sean's "Little Help" (form "Lennon Anthology")
15 Sean Lennon- Julia (John Lennon tribute concert)
16 John Lennon - Beautiful Boy
17 Sean Lennon - A Little Story
(from Yoko's "Season Of Glass")
18 Sean Lennon - It's Alright
19 Paul McCartney & Donovan - Heather (1968)
20 Paul McCartney & son James - Heaven On A Sunday
21 George Harrison & Dhani - Rising Sun
22 thenewno2 - Another John Doe
23 United Artists Against Apartheid with Ringo & Zak - Sun City
24 Ringo Starr & Zak Starkey with The All-Starr Band (1989)-You're Sixteen
25 The Who with Zak Starkey - Black Widow's Eyes
26 Oasis with Zak Starkey - Turn Up The Sun
27 Paul, Ringo, Dhani and others - While My Guitar Gently Weeps
(Concert For George)
28 Paul, Ringo, Dhani and others - Wah Wah (Concert For George)
29 John Lennon - Ya Ya (from "Walls & Bridges" - starring Julian on drums and Dad on piano and vocals)
30 The Beatles - All You Need Is Love (From "Love") - Produced by Geroge Martin and his son, Giles

and let's not forget Big Daddy's version of "Sgt. Pepper" ! Have a Fab Father's Day !

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

When He's 67

After a few years as tabloid fodder, Macca is Back !

Paul is on the road, playing occasional concerts ranging from intimate shows to huge outdoor festivals. Tickets recently went on sale for three shows at the "new" Shea Stadium - the first at the new home of the New York Mets - Citi Field. According to Steve at The Beatles Examiner, it looks like two nights at Fenway Park here in Boston are also on the itinerary.

Now, I've pretty much sworn off these type of concerts. While really big shows occasionally turn out to be great, for the most part it's a mess - not really a wonderful musical experience, more like an event.

I don't want to go to an "event". I want to be moved by the music. I don't want some stranger next to me spilling beer and requesting "Hey Jude" for two hours at the top of his lungs. Outdoor events are even worse. I even skipped Paul's shows at Sullivan Stadium in Foxboro back in the 1990's. People are always milling around, and talking throughout the show. It's not about the music. "Peace and Love," my ass.

Yet, like Michael Corleone in "The Godfather III", "Just when I thought I was out, they pull me back in." I must say I'm intrigued by this tour. Even though there's no way to get a good seat in a baseball stadium without paying through the nose (unlike in an arena, where it is possible to get reasonably priced seats at the side of the stage), there's something about this mini-tour that fascinates me. Even though it made no sense either financially or logistically for me to attend, I did find the idea of going to see Paul at Citi Field an amazing way to experience McCartney live. Shows in John Lennon's adopted home town, as well as the city that hosted most of the Beatles' Ed Sullivan appearances, always seem extra emotional. (And let me start the rumor mill here - do you think he'll bring Ringo along to play at the "New Shea" ? Dhani ? Sean ? Julian? Yoko? )

Luckily, Paul is playing Fenway. I guess I'll go. With Paul's amazing show - and sound system --the experience will be fun at least. While I won't try to get great (expensive) seats, and it will be more of an "event" than a "concert", I feel compelled to attend. I envision an enthusiastic crowd reminiscent of the days of Beatlemania, which is something in itself. It will be exciting, I hope, if I don't expect too much. Then hopefully he'll be back, and play the TD Banknorth Garden, where I can get good, affordable seats, and experience the music.

But Paul is not going to be touring forever. So I will catch him while I can.

So happy birthday, Paul. Glad to have you back in the U.S. See you soon !

Monday, June 15, 2009


Olivia Harrison did a brief phone interview on Chris Carter's "Breakfast With The Beatles", which was broadcast yesterday on Sirius XM's Underground Garage channel.

The purpose of the call was to promote the new George compilation "Let It Roll". She did have a few interesting details. The first bit of news is that even some of the remastered tracks were remastered again! She mentioned that this disc and the Beatles remasters both sound great. For the Fabs CDs, she used the term "mellow" to differentiate it from the "brittle" sound of the original CDs. Carter told a story where he happened to see George at a Tom Petty CD release party the same day "Magical Mystery Tour" came out on CD. When Carter asked George what he thought of the release of the 1967 album on compact disc, Harrison replied, "It sounds 'tinny'."

Also, when discussing Harrison's last album "Brainwashed", Olivia said that she wanted to re-release it, complete with demos and presumably other unreleased material. This would be a great idea since I've never been happy with the final product, especially since co-producer Jeff Lynne kept overdubbing, despite George's direct orders that he did NOT want that to happen after he died.

Olivia also said she plucked the song "The Ballad Of Sir Frankie Crisp (Let It Roll)" out of semi-obscurity as the (sort of) title track for the collection because she pictured George singing the song in his garden, which was previously owned by Mr. Crisp.

Nice interview, and Olivia sounded sincere, but I'm still not going to buy "Let It Roll".