Friday, March 31, 2017

Ringo and Paul have remastered 'Sgt. Pepper' ... are we next?

Former Paul Revere and the Raiders guitarist Keith Allison posted an interesting story on ;his Facebook page. Keith is a good friend of Ringo Starr.
If you're a Beatle fan you might like this this story...I know I do. So today is the 50th anniversary of Sgt. Pepper album being released.
A couple months ago I was at Ringo's home. We were in his man cave watching tv, when a delivery from England came in. It's was from Giles Martin, George Martins son. What's this? It's the Sgt. Pepper album remastered. I said, "I haven't listened to this in I don't know how long." Ringo exclaimed, "You haven't heard it in a long time? I haven't listened to it in decades." So we decide to listen to it on his high def top of the line system. So here we are sitting on the sofa, facing the Tv, muted, but with soap operas playing. We listened to every track together. I thought, this is a historically great moment. Sitting here with my friend, listening to Sgt. Pepper, that he's on as a Beatle, and that he hasn't listen to track by track, since it came out.
Only two copies of the remastered Sgt. Pepper album were sent out, one to McCartney and one to Ringo, to be approved by them both. So what did Ringo think? He thought it was great! Why? Because it originally was recorded on a 4-track with a lot of over dubs, which buried the drums. Now, the drums have been lifted and come through as they should. He was pleased. You'll be glad to know it was remastered at EMI Studios where it was originally recorded.
I remember the first time I heard Sgt. Pepper. It was in Carmel, at Raiders drummer Mike 'Smitty' Smith's home. He got an advanced copy prior to its release. We sat there listening to it, in its entirety. Revisiting certain songs.
Happy 50th Anniversary, Sgt. Pepper!

So Ringo and Paul have it. Are we next? What do you think?

Update: The Beatles website has changed its home page look. Getting ready for a big announcement, maybe?

Monday, March 27, 2017

New interview CD: 'Paul McCartney in the 80s'

This audio CD, "Paul McCartney: In the 80's," due April 7 in the U.S., will look at the career of Paul McCartney in that decade. According to the pre-sell information, it includes a vintage interview   containing "intimate details, rare insight and other gems previously not available until now." Track listings: "New York,"  "George Martin,"  "Beliefs and Themes," "Relating to Average People," "On Michael Jackson," "Black and White," "Touring Plans," "Musicals," "Out On the Road," "Spending Money," "Activities Outside of Music." Run time: 30 minutes.

Laurence Juber's Beatles (and solo Beatles) discography

We were listening to one of Laurence Juber's CDs (it was "Different Times," which has a version of "My Love," to be precise) and wondered how many Beatles and solo Beatles songs he has recorded on his solo projects. So we asked, he answered (thank you, Laurence!) and here they are with links to get them from Amazon in the U.S. (You can also find them at in the UK, in Canada and in Japan.) And look for an interview with Laurence soon on the "Things We Said Today" show we co-host.

Released March 2017
And Your Bird Can Sing
Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds
She Loves You
Day Tripper
Hey Jude
I’ll Follow The Sun
If I Needed Someone
It’s Only Love
Ticket To Ride
And I Love Her
Hey Bulldog
Don’t Let Me Down
Honey Pie

Catch LJ Live!
- Released March 2013

Strawberry Fields Forever
I Saw Her Standing There

LJ Plays the Beatles Vol.2
Released August 2010

Penny Lane
Eleanor Rigby
Drive My Car
Here There and Everywhere
You Can't Do That
I Feel Fine
Dear Prudence
When I'm Sixty Four
Please Please Me
No Reply
I Am The Walrus
All I've Got To Do
The Long And Winding Road 

Pop Goes Guitar
= Released 2008 (All the same as other recordings)

Maybe I'm Amazed
In My Life
Oh! Darling
My Love
Let It Be

- Released 2006

One Wing
Released 2005

Band on the Run
Another Day
My Love
Every Night
With a Little Luck
Maybe I'm Amazed
Silly Love Songs
Listen to What the Man Said
Coming Up
Arrow Through Me
Live and Let Die
Mull of Kintyre

Guitar Noir (DVD)
Released 2003

Strawberry Fields Forever

Different Times 
Released 2001

My Love (
different recording from 'One Wing' version)

 The Collection 
 Released 2000

I Saw Her Standing There (same as LJPTB version)

LJ Plays the Beatles - Released 2000

I Saw Her Standing There
Strawberry Fields Forever
Let It Be
Things We Said Today
In My Life
Here Comes the Sun
You Won't See Me
Martha My Dear
This Boy
Oh Darling
While My Guitar Gently Weeps
For No One
Can't Buy Me Love

Mosaic Released 1998

Saturday, March 18, 2017

RIP Chuck Berry

Without Chuck Berry, we wouldn't have a lot of the music we do. The Beatles, the Beach Boys ("Surfin' USA) and certainly the Stones, to name three, were all influenced by Chuck Berry. Got to see him one time in Saratoga, California. He rocked the house down with a pick-up band.

The Recording Academy Statement Re: Chuck Berry March 18, 2017
Chuck Berry was arguably the founding father of rock and roll. Not just because he was one of its greatest songwriters and established some of the electric guitar's earliest and most memorable riffs, but also because he was one of music's most palpably exciting entertainers and biggest personalities. His influence on the giants that followed him, such as the Beatles, Beach Boys and many others, is well documented. Chuck received a Lifetime Achievement Award from The Recording Academy in 1984, our formal acknowledgment of his immeasurable contributions to American culture. He will be greatly missed, but the gift of his music will live on forever.
Neil Portnow
President/CEOThe Recording Academy
RIP, Chuck.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Twisted Sister founding member writing new Beatles column

Goldmine's April 2017 issue with Jay Jay French's Beatles column debut.

Jay Jay French, founding member and guitarist and manager of Twisted Sister, is the author of a brand new Beatles column for Goldmine, the long-time magazine for record collectors. The column, called “Now We’re 64!,” made its debut in the current (April 2017) issue and will run every other month. The magazine can be purchased in a Kindle version on and also can be found at Barnes & Noble stores until March 20. 

“Adding The Beatles to the list is really exciting for me,” French told the magazine. “Although it seems that everything that could be written about The Beatles has been, I believe that there are more stories to tell. More and unique ways to express how this ‘little rock and roll band’ managed to alter the 20th century."

French also writes for other magazines and is a motivational speaker.  "Goldmine has run many articles on my band Twisted Sister over the years,” he said, including a profile on him in 2014.  "Goldmine editor Patrick Prince knows that my favorite music topic — besides Twisted Sister, of course — is my endless fascination with everything Beatles.” 

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Mary McCartney photo on cover of new Diana Krall album

In looking through information about Diana Krall's new "Turn Up the Quiet" album (also available in the UK, in Canada and Japan) for the obit we wrote on Tommy LiPuma, we discovered that Mary McCartney took the cover photo. The album, to be released May 5, reunites her with longtime producer Tommy LiPuma, who died today. Krall will begin a world tour in June with dates first in the U.S., then Europe. Tickets are available for her shows here. You'll recall that Mary also took the photo for her dad's "Kisses on the Bottom" album that Diana played on. (And yes, we love her music.)

Tommy LiPuma, producer for McCartney's Grammy winning 'Kisses on the Bottom,' has died

Tommy LiPuma, known for his producing a wide range of artists including Paul McCartney, has died at the age of 80, Billboard reports today. LiPuma produced McCartney's "Kisses on the Bottom" album, which won McCartney a Grammy for Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album at the 55th Grammy Awards. Among the long list of artists he has worked with are Diana Krall, Barbra Streisand, Willie Nelson, Leon Russell, Miles Davis, Natalie Cole, Al Jarreau, Randy Newman, and Dr. John. Diana Krall's forthcoming album, "Turn Up the Quiet," is a reunion with LiPuma.

Update: Paul McCartney on the passing of Tommy LiPuma:
"I was very saddened to hear that my dear friend, Tommy LiPuma passed away. We had worked together on my album 'Kisses On The Bottom' which he produced. He was a fun loving, thoughtful guy with a vast knowledge of music. He had been a performer in his youth before he took up production and was always happy to sit with us in the studio whilst I and my fellow musicians worked on a track.
"Diana Krall was a very good friend of his and working together with her and Tommy on the album was a special experience. We would often go out to dinner together and on these occasions he was sure to produce a bottle of fine red wine from his briefcase to accompany the meal. He was an extremely generous man who loved his dear wife Gill (for some reason I called her Gail!!) very dearly.
"I will always have very fond memories of our time together and be proud to share his love with his family and many friends."
The Recording Academy® Statement re: Tommy LiPuma March 14, 2017
Tommy LiPuma was an industry giant whose name became synonymous with sophisticated pop and jazz. His productions resulted in a Record Of The Year GRAMMY with George Benson for “This Masquerade,” an Album Of The Year trophy for Natalie Cole’s Unforgettable With Love, as well as GRAMMYs with Diana Krall and Paul McCartney. He also established or had significant leadership roles at labels such as Blue Thumb, A&M, Warner Bros., GRP, and Verve. Our deepest condolences go out to Tommy's family, friends, and creative counterparts.
Neil Portnow
The Recording Academy

(Be sure to check out our That's What I Want Beatles Store for the biggest selection and best prices of Fab Four items.)

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Ten questions for Klaus Voormann (with KLOS-FM's Chris Carter)

Chris Carter, host of KLOS-FM's "Breakfast With the Beatles," asked 10 questions of Klaus Voormann on March 7. He sent them to us. Here they are (photos courtesy Chris Carter):

Question 1: "Vegetarian or meat eater?"
Klaus Voormann: "Vegetarian."

Question 2: "Favorite bass guitar to record with?" 
Klaus Voormann: "For me… Fender Precision."

Question 3: "When listening to Beatles, do you prefer stereo or mono?"
Klaus Voormann: "I would prefer stereo, but the mono mixes are much better."

Question 4: "Do you prefer a hot shower or a bath?"
Klaus Voormann: "I’ve never had a bath, I’ll always shower."

Question 5: "All time favorite Manfred Mann recording?"
Klaus Voormann: "Mighty Quinn."

Question 6: "Were the Beatles a better live band with Pete Best or Ringo Starr?
Klaus Voormann: "Ringo Starr."

Question 7: "What song that you play bass are you most proud of?"
Klaus Voormann: "Jealous Guy."

Question 8: "Do you have a working record player in the Voormann household?"
Klaus Voormann: "No, I wish I had. What I’d really like… what I have is a quarter-inch tape. I don’t have that machine anymore."

Question 9: "Not including 'Revolver,' your favorite album cover that you’ve designed?"
Klaus Voormann: "Turbonegro."

Question 10: "And my last question, Joe Walsh has this copy of 'Revolver' that he carries around with him at times… What is the story behind that? Do you know? He said that he bought it at a thrift shop, and he says that it’s the original artwork for 'Revolver.'"
Klaus Voormann: "Could be that his story is the truth, that there was a shop and he bought it. What did he say $1,500? That could be right. But he didn’t buy the original."

(And be sure and visit our That's What I Want Beatles store. The best selection, the lowest prices.)

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Songwriter of 'A Taste of Honey' dies

Ric Marlow, the co-composer (with Bobby Scott) of "A Taste of Honey" done by the Beatles, Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass, Barbara Streisand and many others, died Feb.28 in Palm Springs, according to the Hollywood Reporter. The song won a Grammy Award for Best Instrumental in 1962. Three years later, Alpert's version won Song of the Year and three other Grammy Awards.

The Recording Academy issued this statement Tuesday:

"Ric Marlow was a talented songwriter who dedicated his life to many facets of show business. The New York native made his name in music for co-writing the song "A Taste of Honey," which won a GRAMMY Award for Best Instrumental Theme for 1962. The song would later be recorded by Herb Alpert And The Tijuana Brass and earn four GRAMMYs for 1965, including Record Of The Year. Scores of others, including the Beatles, Tony Bennett and Barbara Streisand, would also record the song, and it remains a 1960s pop gem. Our condolences go out to Ric's family, friends, and creative collaborators."

Neil Portnow
The Recording Academy

Sunday, March 5, 2017

Something's afoot for the Beatles' 'Sgt. Pepper' 50th anniversary

A story in the UK Times of London today says the Beatles' "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" album will be re-released in June with two extra tracks, "Penny Lane" and "Strawberry Fields Forever.". Sources tell us that's not accurate, though something is in the works. More details will be coming soon. 

We told you a while back about a book coming June 1 called "Sgt. Pepper at Fifty: The Mood, the Look, the Sound, the Legacy of the Beatles' Great Masterpiece."  Subscribe to this blog and keep us on your radar for "The Word." 

New George Harrison demo or not?

Genesis Publications
The deluxe expanded edition of the new "I Me Mine" published by Genesis Publications comes with a disc featuring the studio and demo versions of "All Things Must Pass."  People were wondering whether it was the same as the "Early Takes, Vol. 1" version. Olivia Harrison's reps confirmed for us it is.