Tag Archives: Beatles

November 13 Music et al

November 13 Music et al

Get That Communist, Joe

In 1954: the Kavaliers sang “Get That Communist, Joe” in which they poked fun at McCarthy’s passion to find Communists everywhere. (see Jan 8)

Joe, come here a minute

I get a red hot tip for you, Joe

See that guy with the red suspenders

Driving that car with the bright red fenders

I know he’s one of those heavy spenders

Get that Communist Joe

He’s fillin’ my gal with propaganda

And I’m scared she will meander

Don’t want to take a chance that he’ll land her

Get that Communist Joe

He’s a most revolting character

And the fellas hate him so

But with the girls this character

Is a Comrade Romeo

Since my love he’s sabotaging

And the law he has been dodging

Give him what he deserves, jailhouse lodging

Get that Communist Joe (Get that Shmo, Joe)

November 13 Music et al

What’s Happening! The Beatles in the U.S.A

November 13 Music et al

November 13, 1964: CBS TV shows a 50-minute documentary, “What’s Happening! The Beatles in the U.S.A.,” filmed by Albert Maysles, covering the Beatles U.S. tour and other activities that year.

Rolling Stone ranks the movie the 10th best rock documentary: Two years after the landmark Lonely Boy brought cinema vérité techniques backstage, the Maysles Brothers hitched a ride with the Fab Four on their first trans-Atlantic trip. Although Richard Lester would (lightly) fictionalize similar scenarios in A Hard Day’s Night, no camera before or since ever got so close to capturing John, Paul, George and Ringo in anything like their natural state; you can almost see the walls coming up as they realize how unavoidably public their lives are about to become. The DVD version, retitled The First U.S. Visit, swaps out scenes highlighting the drudgery of promo-tour obligations in favor of the band’s Ed Sullivan Showperformances — a fair trade, but it’s worth seeking out the original, which still screens in theaters occasionally.(see Nov 23)

November 13 Music et al

The Beatles in Yellow Submarine

and, oh yea,

The Sound of Music

November 13 Music et al
album cover for The Sound of Music
November 13 Music et al

Yellow Submarine

November 13 Music et al

November 13, 1968, the US release of Yellow Submarine movie. The review of the Beatles “Yellow Submarine” began, “YELLOW SUBMARINE,” which opened yesterday, at the Forum and Tower East, is the Beatles’ first feature length cartoon, designed, for the most part beautifully, by Heinz Edelmann, in styles ranging through Steinberg, Arshile Gorky, Bob Godfrey (of the short film “The Do It Yourself Cartoon Kit”), the Sgt. Pepper album cover, and — mainly, really — the spirit and conventions of the Sunday comic strip.” (NYT review of Yellow Submarine) (see Nov 21)

November 13 Music et al

Sound of Music

November 13 Music et al

November 13 –26, 1965, the Sound of Music soundtrack was the Billboard #1 album. This is how my brothers and sisters used to say goodnight, too.

November 13 Music et al
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November 9 Music Beatles James Brown

November 9 Music Beatles James Brown

The Beatles

Cavern Club
Beatles in the Cavern Club
Beatles in the Cavern Club

On November 9, 1961 The Beatles performed at the Cavern Club at lunchtime. That night they appeared at Litherland Town Hall, Liverpool (their final performance at that venue).

This was a major day for The Beatles, although they are unaware of it at the time–in the audience at the Cavern Club show was Brian Epstein, dressed in his pin-stripe suit and seeing The Beatles for the first time.

Accompanying Epstein was his assistant Alistair Taylor. Epstein will recall his first impressions in a 1964 interview: “They were fresh and they were honest, and they had:star quality. Whatever that is, they had it, or I sensed that they had it.” Over the next few weeks, Epstein becomes more and more interested in possibly managing The Beatles and he does a lot of research into just exactly what that would entail. When he speaks with the group’s embittered ex-manager Allan Williams, he is told, “Brian, don’t touch ’em with a fucking bargepole.” Nonetheless, Epstein invited The Beatles to a meeting at his record store on December 3.

Five years later…
Yoko Ono poster for show at The Indica Gallery
Yoko Ono poster for show at The Indica Gallery
November 9 Music Beatles James Brown

Yoko Ono @ The Indica Gallery

November 9, 1966: John Lennon visited the Indica Gallery in London where he met Yoko Ono who was displaying her art. The Indica Gallery was in the basement of the Indica Bookshop in Mason’s Yard, just off Duke Street in Mayfair, London and co-owned by John Dunbar, Peter Asher, and Barry Miles, and was supported in its early years by Paul McCartney.

November 9 Music Beatles James Brown

James Brown

Say It Loud, I’m Black and I’m Proud
James Brown, say it loud I'm black and I'm proud
James Brown

November 9, 1968: singer James Brown gave support to the civil rights movement with his song, “Say It Loud — I’m Black and I’m Proud (Part 1),” which hit number one on the R & B charts for a record sixth straight week.

From schmoop.com: …the song was also – more of a rarity for the Godfather of Soul – deeply political. “Say It Loud (I’m Black and I’m Proud)” was almost a revolutionary statement in 1968, and one laced with more than a little bit of irony. Brown said he recorded the tune as a kind of children’s song, hoping to instill pride in the younger generation. But many whites heard it only as militant and angry, costing Brown a good chunk of his interracial crossover audience. And those kids happily shouting out the chorus, “I’m black and I’m proud”? In another ironic twist, most of them were actually white or Asian schoolchildren.

November 9 Music Beatles James Brown
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October 17 Music et al

October 17 Music et al

Some dates just seem to have a whole lot a music et al going on and October 17 is one of those days. Just look at what happened on October 17 throughout the 60s.

Save the Last Dance for Me

October 17 Music et al

October 17 – 23, 1960:  “Save the Last Dance for Me” by the Drifters was #1 on the  Billboard Hot 100.

The story behind the song is that Doc Pomus found a wedding invitation in a hatbox. The invitation reminded him of his own wedding reception and watching his brother Raoul dance with his new wife, Willi Burke, a Broadway actress. Doc watched because the effects of childhood polio kept him in his wheelchair.

The memory inspired him to stay up all night writing lyrics. He used the invitation for stationery.

Earlier that day, Doc’s musical partner, Mort Shuman had played a Latin melody. Doc wanted the lyrics to sound like a poem translated into English  They do suggest jealousy: “If he asks if you’re all alone, can he take you home, you must tell him no.”

Pomus ended his night of songwriting by writing down the words that would become the title: “Save The Last Dance For Me.”

Famous composers Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller produced the song. Ben E King was the Drifters lead singer at the time. Ironically, equally famous Atlantic Records Ahmet Ertegun and Jerry Wexler decided to put “Save the Last Dance for Me” on the B-side. Dick Clark of American Bandstand flipped over the single, listened to “Dance,” realized what a great song it was, and played it on his show American Bandstand.

It was the Drifters only #1 hit.

The song’s popularity continues into our 21st century. Unfortunately, Pomus and Willi Burke’s marriage did not make it out of the 60s.

October 17 Music et al

Beatles first Christmas wishes

October 17 Special Music Edition

October 17, 1963 was a(nother) busy day for the Beatles that began mid-afternoon. First they recorded their first Christmas disc. Click below to hear it, likely hear it again. American fans did not receive this recording because Americans did not yet know about the Beatles. The Beatles continued to record these annual fan club gifts until 1969. The Official Beatles Fan Club mailed this disc out on December 9.

Later, the Beatles again recorded Smokey Robinson’s “You Really Got a Hold On Me,” but were still not satisfied. The version we hear on With the Beatles is actually a combination of earlier attempts.

The main goal of the day was to record their next single, “I Want To Hold Your Hand.” It took 17 takes.

They then recorded (in 15 takes) “This Boy.” They overdubbed some of the vocals which are the hallmark of the song.

Their day ended at 10 PM though they had taken a break between 5:30 and 7 PM.

October 17 Music et al

Do Wah Diddy Diddy

October 17 Music et al

October 17 1964 was the first day that Manfred Mann’s version of Do Wah Diddy Diddy hit #1 on Billboard’s Hot  100. It remained there until October 30.

October 17 Music et al

Jeff Barry and Ellie Greenwich wrote the song and the American group the Exiters first recorded it in 1963.

Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller (see above) had hired Barry and Greenwich who are also famous for many other songs such as  “Chapel of Love”, “People Say”, and “Iko Iko,”  “Remember (Walkin’ in the Sand),” and “Leader of the Pack”

Manfred Mann recorded the song (with the extra Ditty in the title) and had the number one hit with it.

 

October 17 Music et al

Hair

October 17 Music et al

1967’s October 17 Special music event is the first one that feels like the 60s as many remember it. Very much so.

The play, Hair premiered off-Broadway at the Public Theatre and ran for a limited engagement of six weeks. Although the production had a “tepid critical reception”, it was popular with audiences.

James Rado and Gerome Ragni wrote the play. Galt MacDermot the music. and music by Galt MacDermot. The play reflected the counter-cultural times with its depiction of the use of illegal drugs, sexuality, and treatment of the flag.  A nude scene caused much comment and controversy. It became the blueprint for future so-called “rock musicals.”

October 17 Music et al

Brian Epstein

October 17, 1967:  although the Beatles had not attended manager Brian Epstein’s funeral on August 29, John, Paul, George, and Ringo attended the memorial service for Brian Epstein at the New London Synagogue, Abbey Road. [Beatles Bible article] (see Nov 27)

Sugar Sugar

And we come full cycle. October 17, 1969, just two years after Hair opened (and continued to run) was the last day  Archies’ “Sugar Sugar” was the Billboard #1 song. Who co-wrote “Sugar Sugar”? None other than Jeff Barry whom we find in the middle of today’s post with his wife Ellie Greenwich.

October 17 Music et al
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