The Hollywood Vampires – McCartney Guest Appearance

The Hollywood Vampires album, which contains a guest appearance from Paul McCartney, has been officially released:Hollywood VampiresHere’s the press release:

In 1972, on the Sunset Strip at a club called the Rainbow Bar & Grill, the Hollywood Vampires were born in the upstairs bar. It was a gathering place for the rock stars living in or passing through L.A. “To join the club, one simply had to out drink all of the members,” says Alice Cooper, a founding member of the Vampires. “I would walk in on a typical night” Alice says, “and John Lennon, Harry Nilsson, Keith Moon—who would usually be in a costume like a maid or a chauffeur—Bernie Taupin, Jim Morrison and Mickey Dolenz would be there. The next week might be Bernie Taupin, Jimi Hendrix, Jim Morrison and Mickey Dolenz.”

Three years ago, Alice and good friend Johnny Depp got together and decided the spirit of the Hollywood Vampires should live again (minus the drinking). An environment for great artists to hang, laugh and play together. The Hollywood Vampires live again with the release of the Hollywood Vampires new album. Alice and Johnny were joined by Joe Perry, who is an old friend of both of them, and the recording began: a tribute to the original Hollywood Vampires.

For the next two years, Alice, Joe and Johnny, joined by producer Bob Ezrin and an amazing group of modern day vampires, including Perry Farrell, Dave Grohl, Sir Paul McCartney, Joe Walsh, Slash, Robbie Krieger, Zak Starkey, Brian Johnson and Kip Winger, recorded tracks by their dead friends and heroes. Also included are two original songs that tell the story of the Vampires, one of which, “Raise The Dead,” has an intro by Sir Christopher Lee, recorded just prior to his death.

The album package, an antique book, was created by noted men’s fashion designer (and rock fan) John Varvatos in his signature vintage style. Alice and Varvatos, both Detroit natives, have been partners in fashion for several years with Alice lending his classic rock style as a brand ambassador.

A sneak peek at the liner notes, penned by original Hollywood Vampire Bernie Taupin, “I’m not here to defend their vices. Over-indulgence of any sort does not ultimately constitute for a healthy mind and body. And while on the periphery of those involved, wives may have come and gone, career choices may have been deemed dubious, and heartbreak in some cases stalked a dark corridor, but in the lair of the Hollywood Vampires only joy and laughter reigned.”

“I’m not completely sure what constituted bad behavior back then, but in this lair it existed in a bubble, a hermetically sealed dome of fun. It may not have been the round table at the Algonquin, but these were witty, intelligent guys who often got raucous and loud, but rest assured there were no bystanders or animals hurt in the making of the Hollywood Vampires.”

All artist proceeds will be donated to MusiCares.  

And here’s the track listing:

1. The Last Vampire (Hollywood Vampires)
2. Raise The Dead (Hollywood Vampires)
3. My Generation (The Who)
4. Whole Lotta Love (Led Zeppelin)
5. I Got A Line (Spirit)
6. Five to One/Break On Through (The Doors)
7. One/Jump Into The Fire (Harry Nilsson)
8. Come And Get It (Badfinger)
9. Jeepster (T.Rex)
10. Cold Turkey (John Lennon)
11. Manic Depression (Jimi Hendrix)
12. Itchycoo Park (Small Faces)
13. School’s Out / Another Brick In The Wall pt.2 (Alice Cooper / Pink Floyd)
14. Dead Drunk Friends (Hollywood Vampires)

As you can see, the band tackle a version of John Lennon’s ‘Cold Turkey’. The main McCartney performance is Badfinger’sCome And Get It‘, which of course he wrote and produced for that Apple band – way back in 1969!

Pipes of Peace and Tug of War – Added Extras

With the release of the Paul McCartney Archive Series versions of Tug of War and Pipes of Peace just over one week away now there doesn’t appear to be much in the way of any “added extra” special releases associated with either re-issue.

McCartney has in the past stitched up deals with big retailers like Target or Best Buy (in the US) to include extra discs or bonus materials exclusive to those stores – for the Archive Series and also some of his more recent solo efforts. A quick look around the web today reveals that (so far) it doesn’t look like that’s going to happen this time around.

Only Best Buy is advertising a free “collectable” tote bag with the purchase of either title….Tug of War Best Buy Pipes of Peace Best Buy

The Day After Shea Stadium – A Concert by You-Know-Who….

From the New York Times, the day after the famous Shea Stadium concert by the Beatles….NYT Shea StadiumLove the line: “During the two days since the group’s arrival from London there have never been more that 2,000 Beatle addicts racing about the midtown, making shrill noises and in general irritating the police.” Only 2,000 fans on the streets of NYC for two days:


And this is what 55,600 fans were there for:

Thanks for Andrey in Russia for the scan.

It’s The Beatles, as you’ve never seen them before

This is the answer to the mysterious countdown on for the last few days:

Yes, it is the video version of the Beatles “1” CD, plus a bit more, newly restored and expanded in multiple configurations for global release on November 6.

At first glance it is a little confusing (see the full press release below) – but this is it in a nutshell:

  1. There’s a new 2015 remixed and remastered version of the single-disc audio CD (containing 27 songs)
  2. There’s a pack with either 1 DVD or 1 BluRay (each containing videos of all 27 songs that are on the CD), plus the CD
  3. There’s a Deluxe set with either 2 DVDs or 2 BluRays (one disc has the videos of all 27 songs that are on the CD, the second disc contains 23 bonus videos), a 124 page hard cover book, plus the CD
  4. Or you can buy just the single BluRay or the single DVD (each containing 27 songs)
  5. A 2 LP, 180-gram vinyl package will follow

The single CD:1 2015 CD

The single DVD (or BluRay), plus CD:1 CD and BluRay

The Deluxe 2 DVD (or 2 BluRay), plus book and CD:1 Deluxe

The single BluRay:1 BluRay (1)

The single DVD:1 DVD

How they did the video restoration, repairs and remastering:

A “before” and “after” comparison: 

And a short example of how “Strawberry Fields Forever” (only available in the Deluxe set) will look: 


All-New Editions of The Beatles 1 Pair Beautifully Restored Promotional Films and Videos with Brand New Stereo and Surround Audio Mixes

Beatles 1+ Deluxe Edition Celebrates the Sight & Sound of The Beatles in 50 Films & Videos

London – September 15, 2015
After The Beatles stopped touring, and because travelling around the globe to promote new releases was impossible, the band increasingly made what could be described as “mini movies”. These pioneering promotional films and videos helped to define the way we have come to watch music, not least because The Beatles approached filming with the same ease and innovative spirit they brought to the recording studio, exploring new creative possibilities with infectious delight. Showcasing the band’s filmed work to accompany their 27 No.1, U.K. and U.S. singles, The Beatles 1 is newly restored and expanded in multiple configurations for global release on November 6 by Apple Corps Ltd/UMG.

The 27-track CD/DVD and CD/Blu-ray pairs beautifully restored videos for each song, with new stereo and 5.1 Dolby Digital and DTS HD surround audio mixes. The brand new Beatles 1+ celebrates their career in over 200 minutes through 50 promotional films and videos. This includes the 27 No.1s, with the restored videos, along with a second disc of 23 videos, including alternate versions, as well as rarely seen and newly restored films and videos; all include new audio mixes in deluxe CD/2-DVD and CD/2-Blu-ray packages. The 27-track audio CD is also being made available with new stereo mixes. A 2 LP, 180-gram vinyl package will follow.

TThe new editions of The Beatles 1 have been made possible following extensive research, and restoration of the original promo films, classic television appearances and other carefully selected videos spanning the band’s history. Apple Corps dug deep into The Beatles’ vaults to select a broad range of films and videos for their rarity, historical significance and quality of performance. An 18-person team of film and video technicians and restoration artists was assembled by Apple Corps to undertake painstaking frame-by-frame cleaning, colour-grading, digital enhancement and new edits that took months of dedicated, ‘round-the-clock work to accomplish.

The result is a visual run down of The Beatles’ number one records, as well as the additional tracks on the bonus disc of Beatles 1+ that show the band in previously unseen standards of clarity and quality; many of the films and videos have never before been commercially released, in whole or in part.

Beatles 1 and Beatles 1+ offers the restored films, including 35mm negatives scanned in 4K and digitally restored with new stereo and 5.1 surround audio remixes, produced from the original analogue tapes by the GRAMMY® winning team of Giles Martin with Sam Okell at Abbey Road Studios. For four of the videos, Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr have provided exclusive audio commentary and filmed introductions, respectively. The 1+ Deluxe Edition, presented in an expanded 124-page illustrated hardcover book includes ‘an appreciation’ of The Beatles’ ground-breaking films and videos by music journalist and author Mark Ellen and extensive, detailed track/video annotation by music historian and author Richard Havers.

“These videos and films are spectacular reminders of the era we lived in. They also rock!”
Paul McCartney

“II think it’s really interesting to see the videos we made, some of them incredible and some of them really incredible. How else would we have got to sit on a horse?”
Ringo Starr

Between 1962 and 1970, The Beatles released 27 No.1 hit singles in the U.S. and the U.K. In 2000, these timeless songs were collected for The Beatles 1, which topped the charts in 35 countries and became that decade’s bestselling album worldwide. 15 years later, 1 is revisited for this entirely new, visually-inspired presentation.

It’s The Beatles, as you’ve never seen them before.Beatles_1_1_1_1

Teaser for The Beatles “1” DVD? – Part 2

The dearth of information in today’s mystery teaser announcement on the Beatles official page leads fans inevitably to snooping around the web trying to find something, anything, on what it might all be about.

Truth be told, there’s not much around. Word has it that there’ll be more official news on Tuesday….

But what is with that address given at the bottom of the image in the email sent out to subscribers of The You can see it here:_theBeatles1

If you search in Google Maps for 1538 20th Street, Santa Monica, California 90404, and then go to Street View, you’ll see this very non-descript building:1538_20th_Street

Does that look like the US headquarters of a multi-million dollar Beatle empire? No, we didn’t think so either. Check out that hand-written wooden sign propped on the right-hand-side windowsill, with the 1538 street number.

The email image also credits a company called Topspin, and a service called The Topspin Platform. That’s an online, direct-to-fan sales and marketing tool used by a wide range of bands to promote their product, make online sales, sell tickets to gigs, etc. Check out the video on the page to find out more. They’ve done a lot of work with the Concord label in marketing Paul McCartney’s releases over many years, so it’s not that surprising that Universal and/or Apple and the Beatles have used the company to kick off this campaign. But Topspin isn’t at 1538 20th Street, Santa Monica either. Their address is 3120 W. Empire Ave., Burbank, California 91504 – in a much more salubrious part of that city.

So what is going on? The mystery deepens…..

Teaser for The Beatles “1” DVD?

The official Beatles website has emailed subscribers overnight teasing what could be the long-promised Beatles “1” DVD/BluRay – which has been rumoured to be in preparation for over a year now and will contain official versions of all the band’s promo videos and film-clips. _theBeatles1

There’s precious little other information apart from the Twitter hashtag #THEBEATLES1…..and a 16 second video on the Beatles official YouTube channel:

The Beatles website has been given over to a holding page with the countdown clip as well.

It’s all very cryptic, but must surely be leading up to the announcement of a video equivalent of the top-selling “1” CD and vinyl.

A Big Pile of Beatle Sheet Music Rediscovered

We were digging around in a cupboard the other day and came across a long-forgotten stash of Beatle sheet music collected from a variety of places over the years. Thought you might like to see the front covers. Most are printed and published for the Australia/New Zealand market. Some are books with numerous songs, others are single titles. As you’ll see, they’re in far from pristine condition, but interesting none-the-less.

Here they are in (roughly) chronological order:  Hard Days NightMMTApple Song BookBallad of J&YCome TogetherMy Sweet LordIsn't It A PityIt Don't Come EasyAnother DayImagineMull of KintyreColourful Beatles20 Greatest1967-19701962-1966 (1)1967-1970 (1)Past Masters