Saturday, July 28, 2012

Saturday Club Debut

The next two years or so would be the busiest years for the Beatles with a various amount of radio appearances, television and concerts and finally recording. On January 22 1963, the Beatles played live at the BBC for their debut on the program "Saturday Club".
The Beatles ended up playing both of their A-sides singles up to that point: "Love Me Do" and "Please Please Me". They also performed three covers including "Some Other Guy", "Keep Your Hands Off My Baby" and "Beautiful Dreamer".  The host for this particular show was Brian Matthew and the location of the performance was a the Playhouse Theatre in London.
The three cover songs can be found on the bootleg LP "Beautiful Dreamer". The first A-side single "Love Me Do" can be found on the CD bootleg box set "Mythology, Volume 1". The second A-side single has not yet been released as this performance.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Mach Shau !!

For the rest of the year 1962, The Beatles recordings include a fragment of a radio performance conducted for the BBC program "Here We Go". The song (A Taste Of Honey) shows up timed as less than a minute on the bootleg CD "Artifacts".  This is the first instance of hearing Ringo's drumming for the BBC. The show was tape October 25 1962.
A month later at EMI studio two (November 26 1962), The Beatles recorded their second single "Please Please Me/Ask Me Why". This is available commercially in mono and stereo on the LP and CD of the same name.
Lastly, The Beatles were scheduled to finish the year in Hamburg Germany at the newly opened "Star Club" and were taped during their performance at the club by Adrian Barber. The performances were taped on December 28 and December 31 1962 although they may have been taped in between. Most of the material from these tapes come from the earlier December 28 performance. Most of the songs can be found on the "Live At the Star Club" 2-LP commercial release. Some of the stray songs can be found on the bootleg LP "Mach Shau!". Songs include "A Taste Of Honey/ Till There Was You/ Where have You Been All My Life?/ Lend Me Your Comb/ You're Feets Too Big/ I'm Talking about You/ To Know Her Is To Love Her/ Everybody's Trying To Be My Baby/ Matchbox/ Little Queenie/ Nothin' Shakin' but The Leaves On The Trees/ Roll Over Beethoven/ Be-Bop-a-Lula/ I Saw Her Standing There/ Hallejulah I Love Her So/ Red Hot/ Sheila/ Twist and Shout/ Mr. Moonlight/ Sweet Little Sixteen/ Besame Mucho/ Red Sails In The Sunset/ I Remember You/ I'm gonna Sit Right Down and Cry Over You/ Kansas City/ Shimmy Like Kate/ Long Tall Sally/ Falling In Love Again (Can't Help It)/ Road Runner/ The Hippy Hippy Shake/ Money (That's What I Want)/ Reminising/ Ask Me Why" plus a lot of banter and guest waiters singing. It's entertaining but the sound is bad mono and horrible.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Rehearsing at the Cavern Club

One of the rare instances where there is a recording of The Beatles rehearsing at an empty Cavern Club (probably between shows in the afternoon), let alone ANY tape of the Beatles rehearsing anywhere !! Ringo had only been in the band for a couple of months and the first single (Love Me Do/ P.S. I Love You) had been recorded. This rehearsal took place sometime in October/November 1962.
The songs available on bootleg are as follows: "I Saw Her Standing There" (which would open the first LP), two takes of "One After 909" (first recorded March 1963 but not released at the time; later to appear as a re-make on the "Let It Be" official release) and finally two takes of "Catswalk" (unreleased by the Beatles but given to Chris Barber Band to cover. As the song was given away by the composer (Paul), the name of the song was changed to "Catcall").
I have found both "One After 909" and "Catswalk" which are track one and two respectively on the bootleg LP "NOT FOR SALE" (pictured above). It's also available with the tracks "I Saw Her Standing There" and "One After 909" on the bootleg double CD "Anthology Plus" which mistakingly claims the recordings to be from Spring (rather than Fall) 1962 and claims Pete Bests on drums although the style of playing is clearly Ringo.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Live At the Cavern (Part Two) !!

Well, it seems that Granada TV had filmed the Beatles at the Cavern on August 22 1962 but were unhappy with the recording aspect of the film. So it was on September 05 1962 that Granada TV brought their tape recorders and recorded the Beatles re-performing "Some Other Guy" and the idea was to sync the audio to the film. Simple enough (assuming that The Beatles played the song at the same tempo as the previous performance, I guess).
Anyway, two songs were recorded: "Some Other Guy" and "Kansas City/ Hey Hey Hey Hey". The introduction to "Some Other Guy" is once again supplied by Bob Woller (Cavern in-house DJ) with the words: "OK, this is it. The Beatles sing 'Some Other Guy'". The introduction to the "Kansas City/Hey Hey Hey Hey" is done by Paul with the words: "Had a couple of requests to do a tune called 'Kansas City' , so we'd like to do 'Kansas City' ".
This alternate version of "Some Other Guy" can be found on the vinyl bootleg: "The Stereo Walk" as well as the CD "Puttin' On The Style". The version of "Kansas City" can be found (in a shortened form) on the "Anthology" documentary DVD/ VHS.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Live At the Cavern !!

On August 22 1962, Granada TV wisely decided to film The Beatles performing a gig at the Cavern Club. The footage is a noon session with the introduction by Cavern DJ Bob Wooler: "At this midday session at the Cavern, we proudly present The Beatles". There is a shot of the stage from the audience's point of view and they play "Some Other Guy". The camera moves up and eventually showing John and Paul. There is also footage from the side and various angles of the stage but I'm not sure which songs the Beatles are performing at this point. All of the footage has the "Some Other Guy" music in the back ground.
This version of "Some Other Guy" also features someone in the audience shouting "We Want Pete" at the end of the song.
The footage with this version of "Some Other Guy" can be found on both the "Complete Beatles" documentary and the "Anthology" documentary as well. The soundtrack of this version is also found on the Silent Sea bootleg series.

Monday, July 2, 2012

"How Do You Do It" recording session.

On September 04 1962, The Beatles walked back into the EMI recording studio in order to produce candidates for their upcoming first single. The session was produced by George Martin in studio two. It seems that The Beatles had been given a demo of a Mitch Murray written song entitled "How Do You Do It" and George Martin had asked that the band learn the song and it would be recorded on this date as one of the candidates for the single.
It seems that the recording was completed in one take (with a second overdub take of handclaps). The singing and playing are fine, but also sound a little reserved. It would have made an "all right" release. The next song completed in over 15 takes was "Love Me Do" which ended up commercially released on the UK and Canadian single. This version features Ringo on drums (this session was also his first with the group). It seems that George Martin didn't think much of the drumming for this version and it was edited according to Norman Smith (the engineer for the session) quite drastically. I have a hard time hearing any major edits to the song myself.
"How Do You Do It" and "Love Me Do" were both mixed in mono only and no true stereo mixes of these songs exist. I still don't understand how George Martin could have been dis-satisfied with Ringo's drumming when the former song was completed in only one take with no drumming problems whatsoever.
"How Do You Do It" first appeared on a vinyl bootleg single in the middle 1970s. It also appears on the vinyl bootleg LP/CD  "Ultra Rare Trax, Volume One" and the bootleg CD "Unsurpassed Masters, Volume One. An edited (by George Emerick) version of "How Do You Do It" appears on the "Sessions" bootleg and finally officially released on the 3-LP/2-CD Apple "Anthology 1" project.