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

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

Looking Through You – A New and Very Special Beatle Book

An exciting new Beatles book Looking Through You (just out through Omnibus Press in the UK, and soon to be published in the US) has hit our desk – and it is a treat:LOOKING THROUGH YOU BOOK COVER

Looking Through You – Rare & Unseen Photographs From The Beatles Monthly Archive presents a selection of over 300 images taken from the pages of the precious The Beatles Book Monthly magazine photo archive. The Beatles Book Monthly was, as it’s name suggests, a monthly instalment detailing what the Beatles were up to. It started in August, 1663 and continued for six years:johnbbm66 George Harrison 001

The magazine, through the lens of photographer, Leslie Bryce, had unrivalled access to the group throughout the 1960s. Bryce captured the band at work and at play in public but also behind the scenes in un-rehearsed situations resulting in what are unique and candid images.

With a selection of photos from the magazine (all taken between 1963 and 1968), many of the photos gathered for the book are previously unpublished or unseen, often un-cropped and in their original form. The quality of the images is great too because they all are printed from the original negatives:

Beatles in the Mirror

One thing which strikes you as you flip through each of the carefully chosen and captioned images is that this new book will be a treasure trove for those interested in the band’s instruments and equipment. Take this photograph below of George Harrison for example. How many shots have we seen of the group using their customary Vox amplifiers – but here, in this rear view (taken at the Hammersmith Odeon Theatre in December, 1964), you can pick up some great additional details. You can almost read the amps actual model and serial numbers:

George and his Vox Amps

There are numerous shots like this – close-ups of the band’s instruments while on stage as well as a huge number of them at work in the studio, like this one taken at Abbey Road in November, 1965:

Beatles at Abbey Road

Looking Through You has only just come out in the UK and will see a US release soon. The UK edition comes as a cased and numbered 208-page limited edition of 3,000, designed by Lora Findlay with text by Andy Neill. Also in the package is a replica of a rare Beatles artefact associated with the magazine: the 1964 Beatles Book calendar, containing a further 12 photographs from the Beatles Monthly archive.

John and his Gretch Guitar

The book’s Facebook site is here.

FYI there is also a Beatles Book Photo Library available online with low-res, watermarked photographs available to view. There is a process for approaching the Archive about accessing high quality images.

McCartney Archive Series – Next Two Instalments Announced

The next two instalments in the long-running Paul McCartney Archive Series, personally supervised my Paul McCartney himself, will be the albums Tug of War and Pipes of Peace

As for past releases in the series these will both be issued as Special Edition double CDs, in a Deluxe edition with DVDs, books and inserts, and also as double LP vinyl sets:Tug SpecialPipes SpecialTug DeluxePipes DeluxeTug VinylPipes Vinyl

The big change this time around will be the addition (just for Tug of War) of a Super Deluxe Edition, with the same content as the Tug of War Deluxe set but with a limited edition red acrylic outer cover and five hand numbered Linda McCartney photo prints included. This will be limited to 1000 copies worldwide:Tug Super Special

There’ll also be a variety of digital downloads in high and low res – some with the bonus content and some without.

All are due for release on October 2. Here are two promo videos showing what’s inside: