The Simpsons – McCartney Episode

Always wanted to get a copy of this for the collection, and now we have. It is part of a “Best Of” series of videos that has the episode starring Linda and Paul McCartney:Simpsons 1

The Simpsons episode of interest is called ‘Lisa the Vegetarian’, which was the fifth episode in season seven originally. It first aired in the US in October, 1995.

From Wikipedia: In the episode, Lisa decides to stop eating meat after bonding with a lamb at a petting zoo. Her schoolmates and family members ridicule her for her beliefs, but with the help of Apu, Paul, and Linda McCartney, she commits to vegetarianism. The pair’s condition for appearing was that Lisa would remain a vegetarian for the rest of the series. The episode makes several references to McCartney’s musical career, and his song ‘Maybe I’m Amazed’ plays during the closing credits.

Simpsons 2Simpsons 3

During ‘Lisa the Vegetarian’, Paul says, “If you play ‘Maybe I’m Amazed’ backwards, you’ll hear a recipe for a really ripping lentil soup.” The song is played during the closing credits, and Paul’s reading of the recipe can be heard if the sound is played backwards.

The recited recipe can be heard (played forwards) in the extra features on The Complete Seventh Season DVD boxset.

New Jazz Interpretations of the Band You’ve Known For All These Years

This is an interesting project that’s been released just this week.

It’s way out there, but cool at the same time. How do new interpretations of the Beatles for a jazz big band sound? Well, we very much like what we’ve heard so far.

Kaleidoscope Eyes: The Music of the Beatles is a new CD from US trumpeter, arranger and band leader, John Daversa:

Daversa Eyes

“A while ago, a good friend of mine asked me to write a “Daversafied” arrangement of a classic Beatles tune. I thought to myself, “wow, what a monumental challenge!” How do you take such classic material, remain reverent to the original intention and spirit of The Beatles, create a fresh vision with new twists and turns–and make it identifiably your own? The challenge intrigued me so much that I decided to create a full-length album for the big band. Let’s go!”

“I’ve since delved deep into the immensely rich Beatles catalog and fallen in love–as so many music lovers have. I’ve “reimagined” the music for the JD Big Band personalities and expanded the instrumentation to include tuba, bassoon, oboe, alto flute, piano, string section, a chorus of singers, and more—truly an expanded Large Jazz Ensemble! Vocalist Renee Olstead and spoken word artist, Katisse Buckingham will also join us on the album.”

As one YouTuber put it, “This is not your typical Beatles tribute!”:

Kaleidoscope Eyes cover.jpg

Rare Beatle Footage Discovered in Australia

On the 1st of November, 1965 The Beatles were in the Granada Television make-up room in Manchester in the UK.

They were there for a television show being taped in their honour called The Music of Lennon & McCartney. One of the make-up ladies, Australian dancer and make-up artist Dawn Swane, happened to have with her a small Super 8 movie camera. She took it out to shoot a personal memento of the band backstage. Of course The Beatles got into it, taking charge of the camera themselves to shoot their own scenes. In short, mucking around and vamping it up for the camera.

That short piece of footage has sat in moldering in a drawer – until now. It has just been donated to the Australian National Film and Sound Archive. You can view the footage on their site.

As 702 ABC Sydney breakfast radio presenter Robbie Buck said when introducing an interview with Dawn Swane’s daughter, Melinda Doring, it’s so rare these days to find previously unseen footage of such an iconic band:

You can see the opening credits and beginning of The Music of Lennon & McCartney TV program the Beatles were preparing for here:


The Detail Behind the Mysterious McCartney 12-inch

This article courtesy of the very informative Super Deluxe Edition page:

The full story behind how the mysterious white label, 12-inch 45 release featuring two remixes of Paul McCartney’s Band on the Run album track ‘Nineteen Hundred and Eighty-Five’ came about in the lead-up to Record Store Day, and who was responsible for it, has been revealed…wl_phonicaMcCartney 1985 12in

As reported in a detailed interview with Billboard magazine, it turns out that German DJ/remixer Timo Maas and Canadian producer James Teej were responsible for the release, with Maas having done some work on the McCartney multi-tracks as far back as 2009. The German wasn’t really satisfied with his work at that time: “we never fully succeeded in working the parts to a point where I really felt the end result was worth passing along,” he told Billboard, and so the music lay dormant on his computer until last year, when James Teej came to visit and heard it.

Enthused, the pair then set back to work on creating the two remixes. They were sent to Paul McCartney who gave them his seal of approval.

“We secretly sneaked it [only 300 copies were made apparently] into two vinyl stores in the UK and Germany in order to test the waters and understand how people would react to the music on face value. The response was a little hard to believe,” says Maas, adding, “Phonica’s London store’s phone was ringing off the hook like crazy for copies, and it went to No. 1 on their charts overnight. All of that got picked up first by i-D magazine, and made it all the way to the UK tabloids who speculated that Kanye West might be behind it.”

It’s interesting to learn how this release came about; especially to note the fact that it wasn’t McCartney’s MPL company which put out the white label, rather Maas and his management.

And that now copies are selling on eBay for around the US$200-300 mark….

There was also a limited edition 7″ (a radio edit version) issue on Record Store Day in a run of 100 copies, also through the Phonica store.mccartney 1985 single 1

Beatle LEGO Kits?

How cool would it be to have some official Beatle LEGO?

You can go online now and purchase un-official kits, but so far the LEGO company hasn’t made any formally available. That’s not for the want of trying. Some fans are determined and have applied through LEGO’s “Ideas” page process.

The “Ideas” page invites submissions and then there’s a voting process. If you can get 10,000 votes your idea is then properly considered by LEGO as to whether it could/should go into production.

We’ve been contacted by Beatle and LEGO fan JoeMT who writes:

I am an avid LEGO builder and mutual Beatles fan. I am on a site called LEGO Ideas where you can post an idea for a LEGO set. If the project receives 10,000 votes, it has a chance at being produced by LEGO. I need as many people as possible to vote for The Beatles Cavern Club. Thanks! Joe

Joe’s idea is for an early Beatles scene at the Cavern Club:Beatles Lego CavernBeatles Lego

If you like Joe’s idea then why not vote, or share the link and help him along?

There’s one other Beatle design on the “Ideas” page that’s already garnered the required 10,000 votes and is now well on its way to further consideration – a Beatles LEGO Yellow SubmarineYellow Sub LEGO 1Yellow Sub LEGO 2Yellow Sub LEGO 3

I think I’d buy both these ideas!

Blackbird – The Beatles Album – CD Giveaway

Thanks to the good people at Universal Music Classics we have a copy of Blackbird – The Beatles Album, by the fantastic classical guitarist Miloš Karadaglić, to give away to a lucky reader:Blackbird

The album is released internationally today, January 15, 2016, on Mercury Classics/UMC.

Milos is a young guitarist who has received worldwide attention since his 2011 album debut, with coverage in such varied media outlets as CNN, Vogue, Guitar World, Billboard, The New York Times, NPR, and more. In 2011 he was named Gramophone magazine’s “Young Artist of the Year.” He‘s performed at London’s Royal Albert Hall as well as non-traditional venues such as New York’s Joe’s Pub, London’s Camden Roundhouse (for the iTunes Festival), and at Deutsche Grammophon’s Yellow Lounge “club nights.”

For Blackbird – The Beatles Album, Miloš collaborates with celebrated artists from the varied worlds of pop, jazz and classical, including Tori Amos (‘She’s Leaving Home’), Gregory Porter (‘Let It Be’), Anoushka Shankar (‘Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds’) and Steven Isserlis (‘Michelle’).

Brazilian guitarist-composer Sergio Assad did the arrangements on all tracks (with the exception of “Yesterday” which is by the Japanese composer Toru Takemitsu). Tony Award-winning orchestrator and composer Christopher Austin contributed string arrangements on three tracks, and jazz bassist Chris Hill (who has worked with Jamie Cullum, Annie Lennox and others) provided improvised bass parts to several songs.

“The partnership between George Harrison and Ravi Shankar was one of the most important cross culture collaborations in music. Inviting his daughter Anoushka Shankar, who is one of my absolutely favorite musicians, to join me on ‘Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds was a no-brainer.”

The project marks the first time Miloš has worked with pop vocalists. “Recording ‘She’s Leaving Home with Tori Amos was a deeply emotional experience, and it was amazing having Gregory Porter on ‘Let It Betoo. I could not have asked for more”:

Blackbird – The Beatles Album was recorded in Abbey Road’s famous Studio Two, the very same studio where so much of the original Beatle music was recorded. You can read more about Milos and his music here.

OK. Now to our competition.

To win yourself a copy of Blackbird – The Beatles Album using the contact form below you just need to be the first person with the answer to this easy question:

On which Beatles album did the song ‘Blackbird’ originally appear?




A Couple of Beatle Artefacts

Cleaning up a closet today we rediscovered a large collection of vintage Rolling Stone and other music magazines. Flipping through them casually revealed three artefact print advertisements. The first is from Rolling Stone magazine. This is an Australian 1983 Yearbook edition. The advertisement is topical, with the 2015 re-issue of Pipes of Peace currently on music store shelvesPipes Print Ad

The next also comes from Rolling Stone, again one of their Yearbooks, this time from 1985. Again, this is an Australian edition and it’s an advertisement for sales of an original poster from The Beatles’ Let It Be movie originally released in 1970. The ad copy says “We have a limited number of these full colour original movie posters for sale at $19.95 each plus $3.50 for postage. This is an opportunity to own an item of pop memorabilia that is guaranteed to appreciate in value over the years…..”:

LIB Print Ad

Just where the company located their Let It Be original movie posters isn’t clear, but if these were indeed genuine Let It Be posters then $19.95 was probably a good investment even back in 1985.

The final is a full-page ad which appeared in Billboard magazine in June, 1991. It’s for Paul McCartney’s Unplugged – The Official Bootleg album, released that year:

Unplugged Print Ad

“George Fest” – A New Harrison Tribute Collection

I don’t know if your’e into these tribute concert recordings where various musical luminaries are invited to pay their respects by singing favourite songs. I must say they don’t really do a lot for me, but there’s obviously a market out there for them.

The latest is George Fest – The Music of George Harrison, recorded and filmed on September 28th, 2014 at the The Fonda Theater in Los Angeles:georgebanner

To be released on February 26th, 2016, this live tribute will be available in 5 configurations including 2xCD/DVD, 2xCD/Blu-Ray, 3xLP (180 gram), digital, and a store exclusive bundle:George fest bundles

The artist line-up and songs include:

I ME MINE Britt Daniel (from Spoon)
BALLAD OF SIR FRANKIE CRISP (LET IT ROLL) Jonathan Bates w. Dhani Harrison

GOT MY MIND SET ON YOU Brandon Flowers (from The Killers)
IF NOT FOR YOU Heartless Bastards
BE HERE NOW Ian Asbury (from The Cult)
WAH-WAH Nick Valensi (from The Strokes)
IF I NEEDED SOMEONE Jamestown Revival
ART OF DYING Black Rebel Motorcycle Club
SAVOY TRUFFLE Dhani Harrison
FOR YOU BLUE Chase Cohl w. Brian Bell (from Weezer)
BEWARE OF DARKNESS Ann Wilson (from Heart)
LET IT DOWN Dhani Harrison
HERE COMES THE SUN Perry Farrel (from Jane’s Addiction)
WHAT IS LIFE “Weird Al” Yankovic
MY SWEET LORD Brian Wilson (from The Beach Boys)
ISN’T IT A PITY The Black Ryder
ANY ROAD Butch Walker
TAXMAN Cold War Kids
IT’S ALL TOO MUCH The Flaming Lips
HANDLE WITH CARE Brandon Flowers, Britt Daniel, Dhani Harrison, Jonathan Bates, Wayne Coyne, and “Weird Al” Yankovic
ALL THINGS MUST PASS Ann Wilson, Dhani Harrison, Karen Elson and Norah Jones

“Handle Me With Care” has now been posted on YouTube: