"It's a joke! I mean it needs a joke when the last offer was for $50 million.
It's trying to put the responsibility of making the world a wonderful world
again onto The Beatles. I think that's unfair."
- George, on another Beatles reunion offer
At the Capitol Radio Music Awards show in London, Wings collect the accolade for Best Live Show in London with their 1976 Wembley performances. The group appears personally to collect the award. In the NME, the album Wings At The Speed Of Sound, comes second, behind Abba, in the Most Popular Record of 1976 chart.
Ringo is cast in the role of a temperamental European movie director and ex-husband of Mae West m the film Sextette, which also stars Keith Moon of The Who.
George and Olivia travel to India where they attend the wedding of Ravi Shankar's niece. The Harrisons then travel on to Mexico for a holiday. In 1979, George will recall 1977 as ... "The year I took off from music," revealing that he didn't write one single song between January and December. "I went to the races," said George, who became a regular fixture at Formula 1 motor races around the world.
On a beach in the Bahamas, Eric Idle and former Beach Boys sideman Rikki Fataar begin writing the script for the full length television comedy programme The Rutles.
The new English Tourist Board guidebook called Discover Merseyside describes Liverpool as "The home of The Beatles," but adds, "We cannot find one single relic of the group!"
Saturday January 8
In England, at the Daily Mirror Pop Club Readers Poll Concert, held at the Bingley Hall in Staffordshire, further awards are bestowed on Wings when they arrive to collect their awards for Best Pop Group and Best Rock Group. In addition, Paul is voted by Daily Mirror readers as the Best Group Singer. Joining Paul, Linda and Denny at the ceremony are fellow poll award winners, including David Essex, The Rubettes, The Real Thing and John Miles.
Monday January 10
A statement issued today reveals Apple Corps Ltd. has finally settled their dispute with Allen Klein. The settlement will cost Apple $5,009,200 (approximately £2.9 million). John signs his "release from Klein" papers in New York at the Plaza Hotel, where The Beatles first stayed after arriving in America on February 7,1964. In his statement, Klein praises the "tireless efforts and Kissinger-like negotiating brilliance of Yoko Ono Lennon". This result gives Paul some satisfaction - knowing that Klein is now out of the way - but the fact that Apple has to pay him this sum clearly rankles, as some of this cash was legally his since all of the money Paul had earned up to Band On The Run was paid directly into Apple's account. News that The Beatles are now legally free to reunite produces worldwide speculation. Paul, though, will have none of it. In preparation for the inevitable "When will The Beatles get together again?" question, he prepares a rhyme, a parody of those penned by heavyweight boxing champion Muhammad Ali:
"The Beatles split in '69,
And since then they have been doing fine.
And if that question doesn't cease,
Ain't no one gonna get no peace.
And if they ask it just once more,
I think I'll have to bash them on their jaw."
Wednesday January 19
John and Yoko are among an abundance of celebrities attending Jimmy Carter's Presidential Inauguration Ball, held at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington DC. Performing at the televised event are Paul Simon, Aretha Franklin, Linda Rondstadt and Stevie Wonder, although his appearance does not make the transmitted CBS TV show. Carter is inaugurated as the 39th President of the US the following day.
Friday January 21
The Beatles' solicitors Frere Cholmeley, of London, enquire of Paul Murphy of Lingasong Ltd., about the 1962 Star Club tapes. They are informed, over the phone, that "the records will be released shortly".
Saturday January 22
Wings Over America reaches number one in the American album charts.
Monday January 24
George's single 'Crackerbox Palace'/'Learning How To Love You' is released in America.
Wednesday January 26
John writes a postcard to Chris Charlesworth, Melody Maker's American editor, declining an interview request. Says Charlesworth: "I'd got to know John quite well by this time and instead of going through PRs whenever I wanted to interview him, I simply sent a telegram to the Dakota building. If he was in New York he'd ring me back within 24 hours and we'd make arrangements to meet or just chat on the phone. This was the last time I requested an interview and, of course, he'd gone into hiding, so he wrote, 'No comment, was the stem reply. Am invisible.' I never saw or spoke to John again."
Saturday January 29 & Sunday January 30
In America, based on an idea from BBC Radio One (see entry for Friday April 16, 1976), the entire Beatles recording output from 1962 to 1970 is transmitted in alphabetical order over the weekend on the New York radio station WNEW. During the six hours of programming, the first to be aired is 'Across The Universe' and the last, late on Sunday night is 'You Really Got A Hold On Me'.
It is reported that Linda is expecting a baby in September. Meanwhile, the former Wings guitarist Henry McCullough travels to Liverpool and promptly gets involved in a fight while drinking in a wine lodge. Reports suggest that he had been saying "not too kind a word" about Paul, one of Liverpool's favourite sons!
Tuesday February 1
At BBC Broadcasting House in Portland Place, London, George records a lengthy interview with Anne Nightingale of Radio One, to be broadcast on her show over two parts (Saturday February 5 and 12. See entry for February 5 for details of the interview.) Immediately following the afternoon taping, George boards a flight to Holland to undertake some brief European promotional appearances.
Thursday February 3 (until Sunday February 6 and through February)
At Dam Square in Amsterdam, Holland, George films an interview for Veronica Television. During the short 11-minute feature, which also includes the promotional films for 'Crackerbox Palace' and 'True Love', George talks about his new album, his work for the third world and goes into detail about his first LSD trip. Naturally he is asked about The Beatles getting together again. Even though the problem with Klein has now been resolved, he dismisses the possibility of anything happening with the group again. "Physically we're all in different places and we don't spend time together any more. That's the problem," he states. "We'd have to get to know each other again, everyone's into their own lives. It seems very difficult, the idea of trying to get together."
He is then asked about the recent huge-money Beatles reunion offers. "It's a joke!" says George. "I mean it needs a joke when the last offer was for $50 million and it's just crazy, you know. It's trying to put the responsibility of making the world a wonderful world again onto The Beatles. I think that's unfair. I know a lot of people like The Beatles but it's like eight years ago we split up and it's different you know. It's like we all grew up and left home. It's like trying to get the family back again or trying to get us to go back to school again!" (The interview was last repeated in Holland on February 24, 1988.)
George's next European port of call is Germany, where (on Saturday February 5) he mimes 'This Song' on the ZDF TV music show Disco '77. Besides taking part in a brief conference to promote the album Thirty Three And A Third, George visits Hamburg's Grosse Freiheit, the area of the famous Star Club, Indra and the Kaiserkeller night clubs where The Beatles played during the early Sixties. George next travels to France where he is interviewed for the Sunday night (February 6) programme TFI-TV show Les Rendezvous Du Dimanche. During his 16-minute studio appearance, he talks with host Michael Drucker (with questions translated into English via his earpiece) and introduces the promo film for 'This Song'. Other guests on the show include the heavyweight Greek singer Demis Roussos. When his European duties are completed, George and Olivia fly on to Acapuico in Mexico, where they attend a press party. (Surprisingly, George appears at the gathering wearing a Beatles T-shirt). Later, the Harrisons return to their home in Los Angeles.
Also on February 4, the Wings single 'Maybe I'm Amazed' (live version)/'Soily' is released in the UK, where it will reach number 28. (The American release takes place on February 7.)
Saturday February 5
BBC Radio One transmits (between 1:30 and 2:29pm) the first of two hour-long conversations between George and Anne Nightingale at BBC Broadcasting House, London, on Tuesday February 1. He discusses a wide range of subjects including the Bangia Desh concert, the break-up of The Beatles and his solo recordings. Firstly, Anne asks about recording 'My Sweet Lord' and the troubles that followed with the song.
George: "The first version of that was recorded with Billy Preston with the Edwin Hawkins Singers ... that was good because the idea for the song came to me anyway based upon 'Oh Happy Day'. I was on the road with Delaney & Bonnie and Eric (Clapton) at the time in Sweden and I was just thinking of a way of how to combine Halleluja and Hare Krishna which is just simplistically the West and the East ... how to get everybody singing 'Halleluja Halleluja Halleluja' and then suddenly shove 'Hare Krishna' in and catch them before they realised! That was really the idea, based upon 'Oh Happy Day' by The Edwin Hawkins Singers. As it happened, they came to town and phoned up and said, 'Do you want us to do any dates?' So we got them down to Olympic Studios. The original version of 'My Sweet Lord' is with The Temptations, so we had their drummer, bass player and guitar, Billy (Preston) on piano and organ and The Edwin Hawkins Singers. If you listen to that one, there is a point where I was trying get The Edwin Hawkins Singers to sing 'Hare Krishna'. They are a funny group of people. They were saying, 'What? What is this Hare Krishna?' Luckily, there was one young guy in there and he said, 'You know, Hare Krishna. You have seen them out there, dancing in the street.' And so, if you listen to that version, there is one place where they are going 'Halleluja. Hare Krishna.' So I was happy. I got in twice actually.
"It wasn't until my own version had been released and it was a hit, that trouble loomed large. The first thing I knew was when Klein said something. He said, 'Somebody has made a recording.' It was the company Bright Tunes; they had got this version recorded by Jodie Miller of 'He's So Fine' which was really like, you know, putting the screws in. What they did was to change the chords of 'He's So Fine' and make them completely into the same chords as 'My Sweet Lord' because there is actually a slight difference and then also put on top of it the slide guitar part. So it was really trying to rub it in, and I thought 'God!' So then, all the people started hustling each other and the guy from Bright Tunes was demanding money and various things. I really didn't hear anything about it for years. The attorneys were supposedly settling the thing and in the end I said, 'Look, it is just a lot of aggravation. Just give the guy some money.' And so they were going to give him two hundred thousand dollars. I found out, last week, after it has been to court and has been a big scene, now the guy only gets fifty thousand! The judge made a slip after the court case. He just said to my attorney, 'Actually, I like both of the songs.' My lawyer said to him 'What do you mean, both of the songs? You said, in your decision, that it's the same song.' And he said 'Ooops! Sorry. What I mean is, I like the song with the two sets of lyrics!' "
Anne, being terribly diplomatic and polite, tries to avoid the delicate subject of Patti Harrison going off with George's close friend Eric Clapton. But George is happy to comment on it.
"No. No. You see, ever since 1963 I have not really had a private life. So one thing I found was that if you have got something to hide, you've got all these people buzzing round you, round your front door, all the time. Say, for example, if you split up with your wife and you're trying not to tell anybody, then there's people there who are trying to find something out. But if there's nothing to be known, then it is much easier in the long run. So consequentially, since 1963/1964, The Beatles have been owned by the public, or Fleet Street, and we learnt to live with that. I found that it was much easier just to tell people. What's the point in trying to hide something. It. only means that they are going to be crawling around your garden, trying to get pictures of you and stuff. It's easier just to say 'Sure, I'm divorced' or whatever."
Anne: "So that was the way of doing it."
George: "So well, you know, it was public knowledge, at least with the few people I know, and so that was just a little joke ... 'Bye Bye Love'."
On a trivia note, Anne points out that there are over 120 cover versions of 'Something' in the BBC record library. The interviews are complimented by a wide range of Beatles and solo recordings, plus 'Dispute And Violence' and 'I Am Missing You' by Ravi Shankar, 'Something' performed by The London Symphony Orchestra, 'Costafine Town' by Splinter and versions of 'He's So Fine' by The Chiffons and Jodie Miller. (Part two of this interview is transmitted one week later, on Saturday February 12.)
Meanwhile, at the Cherokee Studios in Los Angeles, California, Ringo begins working for the first time with the producer Arif Mardin and records the unreleased songs 'Lover Please' and 'Wild Shining Stars'. Towards the end of the month, Ringo records the tracks 'Out In The Streets', 'It's No Secret' and 'Gypsy'.
Monday February 7
Wings begin recording the tracks 'London Town' and 'Deliver Your Children'. During this period, work commences on the track 'Girl's School', which will appear at the tail end of the year as the B-side (in the UK) to 'Mull Of Kintyre'. (The recordings will continue until March 31.) During the sessions at Abbey Road, a television crew from Australian television's Countdown show visits the group to watch them rehearse. (The report is first transmitted in the country on April 3.)
Friday February 11
George's single 'True Love'/'Pure Smokey' is released in the UK.
Saturday February 12
Ringo's cover of Bruce Channel's 1962 'Hey Baby' peaks at number 74 in the American singles chart.
Saturday February 19
In Los Angeles, Ringo, appearing alongside the composer Paul Williams, is a guest presenter on the annual Grammy Awards show, which is televised across America.
Sunday February 20
Paul and Linda fly off to Jamaica for a fortnight's holiday. Prior to their departure at Heathrow, fans mob Paul.
Saturday February 26 & Sunday February 27
Another Beatlefest convention takes place this weekend in America. This time the two-day event will be staged at the Statler Hilton Hotel in New York. Amongst the promised attractions is the Granada Television film of The Beatles performing 'Some Other Guy' at the Cavern Club on August 22, 1962. Also on February 26, Melody Maker writes: "Beatles Set For First Live Album." The report goes: "A Beatles live double album looks set for release later this year - if the former members of the band give their consent. Beatles producer George Martin has put together the album from tapes of a concert at the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles in 1964. Martin has already spoken to Lennon about the project in New York." Meanwhile, the paper prints further news on the impending release of the Star Club tapes. "BUK records, reported as planning a release of the album last year, admit that the deal has now fallen through," adding: "The American owner of the 15-year-old tapes. Lee Halpen of New York's Double H Licensing Corporation, is seeking a deal with a British company. He is hoping to set up a contract with one of the television merchandising companies."
John, Yoko and their photographer friend Bob Gruen attend a Broadway performance by the avant-garde Merce Cunningham Dance Company, after which they attend a special reception where they mingle with celebrities such as James Taylor and Carly Simon. Merce Cunningham was an old friend of Yoko's from the Fluxus Art Movement of the late Sixties and early Seventies. Then, within days of the event, and purely as an exercise to see if "the green card works", John ceremoniously packs an overnight bag and travels to Singapore and Hong Kong. From Singapore he sends a postcard to Melody Maker editor Ray Coleman, which cryptically reads: "Far East, Man." Later in the month, John, Yoko and Sean visit another Fluxus Art Movement friend, this time George Maciunas at his New Marlboro farm. The Lennons also pay a visit to Monterey in Canada, where they have their pictures taken at a photo studio in old west costumes. With John spending much of his time away from the Dakota, he fails to receive a written request from the film director Francis Ford Coppola, asking him to write music for his upcoming film Apocalypse Now. Meanwhile, also this month in the States, rumours begin to circulate in the music industry that "Lennon is shopping around for a new record label and may sign with Portrait, run by CBS."
Paul and Wings are among the artists scheduled to appear at two giant concerts in London in June to celebrate the Queen's Silver Jubilee. Paul and Wings have apparently been approached to perform at the British Night concert at Earl's Court on June 4. Also scheduled to appear is Queen.
George, eager for more non-music related business ventures, joins the comic Peter Sellers in investing money in a luxury hotel on the Seychelle Islands.
It is also announced that Derek Taylor, currently the co-deputy-managing director of WEA in England, is shortly to become a vice-president and director of Warner Brothers in California. (He will take up the post in July.)
Saturday March 5
'Maybe I'm Amazed' (live version) reaches number 28 in the UK singles chart.
Saturday March 12
Further news of the Hollywood Bowl album appears in the Melody Maker. The report reads: "Beatles Live LP In May". The short article announces that: "... all four Beatles have now given their consent for the release of the album and that it will be in the shops on May 6. EMI are to back the album with a massive advertising campaign on television, similar to the campaign mounted when The Beatles' Rock 'N' Roll Music album was released last year." The report concludes by saying: "The album, however, will not, as previously reported, be a double album."
Wednesday March 23
Following further enquiries, Apple's solicitors again contact Lingasong Ltd. to ask what they intend to do with the Star Club tapes. They are informed that "the records will be in the shops within two or three months," adding "they may not be released in England as an EMI record of The Beatles is due in May."
Tuesday March 29
With hysteria mounting about the release of a "new" Beatles album, George Martin talks about the Hollywood Bowl recordings to an American newspaper: "Although technically they were pretty awful, hearing the boys' voices in those days and the excitement of it all was really amazing." As for the re-mastering of the original tapes: "It was a labour of love, like restoring an antique motor car."
John, Yoko and Sean return to New York where they pay a visit to the circus at Madison Square Garden, an event captured by ABC Channel 7 News where John and Yoko are briefly seen chatting with Mick Jagger.
The musical Beatlemania comes to Broadway's Winter Gardens Theater in New York. The show, produced by David Krebs and Steve Leber, features Murray The K (Kaufman), the original "fifth Beatle", as a special consultant. The Beatles are played by Joe Pecorino (John), Mitch Weissman (Paul), Leslie Franklin (George) and Justin McNeil (Ringo). While in England, Granada television, the ITV station serving the North of England, transmits, for the first time ever in the UK, the Al Brodax cartoon series The Beatles. These were produced in America between 1965 and 1967, and feature the animated Beatles in short comedy sketches set to the real EMI recordings, which were usually cut or re-edited. (The first American transmissions were on ABC TV on Saturday September 25, 1965.)
Friday April 1
In London, Frere Cholmeley, representing Apple Corps Ltd., write to Paul Murphy at Lingasong Ltd., informing them that they will institute proceedings to "Prevent the making, sale or distribution of the Star Club records" unless they receive suitable undertakings this afternoon. No undertakings are forthcoming and a notice of motion against Lingasong Ltd., is served later in the day. This is The Beatles' first legal move against the proposed release of the Star Club tapes, and their delay will ultimately prove to be a major downfall in their defence.
Saturday April 2
The live version of 'Maybe I'm Amazed' reaches number 10 in the US singles chart.
Monday April 4
John's 'Stand By Me'/'Woman Is The Nigger Of The World' is released as a single in America.
George's 'Dark Horse'/'You' is also released as a single in America today.
Tuesday April 5
Mr. Richard Scott QC, on behalf of The Beatles, applies for a High Court injunction against Paul Murphy and his Lingasong companies releasing the double album The Beatles Live At The Star Club In Hamburg, Germany 1962. Due to a loophole in copyright restrictions, the record is still due to go on sale in Germany this Thursday. Asked about the UK release, Paul Murphy, head of BUK Records, a part of Lingasong, announces: "I don't wish to say anything about that until after the question of this injunction is settled. Though I do plan to release the record in one month." A reporter asks him about The Beatles' claims that they never gave permission for the album to be released. "No-one has heard The Beatles deny that they have given permission for the album to be released," he replies, adding: "We feel it is ethical to release it. It's cost us £50,000 to get the album ready for release."
Wednesday April 6
The Beatles lose in their bid to halt the commercial release of the double album The Beatles Live! At The Star Club In Hamburg, Germany: 1962, which contains recordings originally made by Ted "Kingsize" Taylor on a portable tape recorder during their December 31, 1962, shows. High Court Vice-Chancellor Sir Robert Megarry turns down their application after hearing Ted Taylor say: "The Beatles had originally agreed to the tape provided I bought them a beer!" The judge ultimately rules in favour of Paul Murphy and Lingasong due to the: "Inactivity of the plaintiffs (Apple) until Friday April 1. Until then they had given no sign of objection or protest, they had long known of the tapes and of attempts to exploit them commercially."
His Lordship's ruling goes on: "I cannot treat seriously the contention that the plaintiffs had no thought of the possibility of the records being issued in England and contemplated only publication in the United States. Not until the defendants (Lingsasong) were far along the road towards issuing the records, and had incurred the expense of processing the tapes to improve the quality, and had manufactured the records, did the plaintiffs strike on the very day when they uttered their first warning. Such inactivity was inequitable enough to make the court reluctant to intervene by granting the equitable remedy of injunction. Furthermore, it was common ground that some sort of oral contract was given to the making of the original tape and that consent might well have been wide enough to authorise all that has been done, which failed to satisfy section 1 of the 1958 act only because the consent was not in writing."
The result is bad news for EMI, whose own "live" Beatles album, the Hollywood Bowl 1964/1965 compilations, is set for release on May 1. As expected, they issue a "no comment" statement from their London headquarters. The Star Club album first appears in Germany on Friday April 8, licensed for release from the New York Company Double H Licensing Corporation. For the next two decades, the Star Club tapes become freely available and appear in countless different configurations around the globe. Unbelievably, 21 years and one month after the first case, the tapes will again be the subject of another case in the High Courts of London. (See entry for Tuesday May 5, 1998.)
Meanwhile, in New York, there is further court excitement when Allen Klein is indicted by a grand jury on charges of failing to report more than $216,000 (approximately £127,000) income from the sale of promotional Beatles records. The indictment claims that Klein, aged 46, schemed to get them sold to wholesalers and distributors at a profit. This follows Klein's previous charge of tax evasion during the years 1970-72.
Friday April 8
Further problems befall the infamous Live At The Star Club record when 100,000 copies of the double album, ready for immediate dispatch to England, are caught up in German airport workers' industrial action.
Saturday April 23
In tonight's edition of Saturday Night Live, Rutlemania hysteria continues to grow when "Ron Nasty (played by Neil Innes, wonderfully imitating John circa 1969), now living in seclusion in New York, is invited out of retirement to join in a Save Britain Telethon." The story behind tonight's show goes: "During the late Seventies, Great Britain is reported to be going through enormous financial difficulties and Eric Idle is determined to do something about it." Throughout the show, viewers are (jokingly) requested to pledge money to "help keep Great Britain afloat", a cause that inspires Ron Nasty to come on the show to perform the track 'Cheese And Onions', a song re-recorded for The Rutles TV special transmitted the following year. The audience response to this and the previous Rutles clip forces Lome Michaels to contemplate the funding of a full-length Rutles television programme, to be made by Eric Idle and Gary Weiss, the man responsible for the short comedy films on Saturday Night Live. (See entry for Monday July 18.)
Friday April 29
The album Thrillington, Paul's instrumental version of his Ram album, recorded under the alias of Percy Thrills Thrillington, is released in the UK. A single, 'Uncle Albert -Admiral Halsey'/'Eat At Home' is also issued in the UK today. (The album is released in America on May 17.)
Saturday April 30
Paul and Linda, currently in town on business and to see some Broadway plays, take up residence at the Stanhope Hotel, situated on the east side of Central Park opposite John and Yoko's Dakota apartments on the west side.
Following the McCartneys' return from New York, Wings continue recording their album London Town, this time aboard the yacht Fair Carol off the Virgin Islands which had been converted, by the Record Plant in New York, into a 24-track studio. (Due to the locality of their base, Paul had briefly toyed with calling the album Water Wings.) The idea of recording on a boat came from Rod Stewart and the band America, who had both previously recorded on a sailing vessel. For the duration of the recordings, McCartney Productions also hires two other boats, a minesweeper called Samala, used to house the band and El Toro where Paul stays with Linda and the family. These sessions produce the following: 'With A Little Luck', 'Backwards Traveller'/'Cuff Link', 'Cafe On The Left Bank', 'I'm Carrying', 'I've Had Enough', 'Famous Groupies', 'Don't Let It Bring You Down' and 'Morse Moose And The Grey Goose'. Paul also records various unreleased titles such as 'Boil Crisis', 'After You've Gone', the instrumental 'El Toro Passing' and a Denny Laine track, which features the working title of 'Find A Way'. When not recording, the members of Wings go swimming and "drink swigs of rum", but unfortunately most of the entourage return home with one ailment or another. Paul cuts his knee and bruises a leg, Denny suffers from severe sunburn and Jimmy McCulloch gashes a knee and suffers from temporary deafness. Even Paul's management is in for a rough time, when Alan Crowder of MPL slips down a tight stairway and breaks his heel. Geoff Emerick returns to England suffering from an electrocuted foot! Paul talks further about these sessions for Melody Maker (see entry for November 19).
In New York, John enrols in a Japanese language course. It is here that he again bumps into the world famous Brazilian footballer Pele.
Neil Innes begins writing the songs intended for The Rutles television special. He completes the task in just less than two weeks.
Monday May 2
The Lingasong double album The Beatles Live! At The Star Club In Hamburg, Germany: 1962 is released in the UK. The full line-up of tracks on the album is: 'I Saw Her Standing There', 'Roll Over Beethoven', 'Hippy Hippy Shake', 'Sweet Little Sixteen', 'Lend Me Your Comb', 'Your Feet's Too Big', 'Twist And Shout', 'Mr. Moonlight', 'A Taste Of Honey', 'Besame Mucho', 'Reminiscing', 'Kansas City - Hey-Hey-Hey-Hey', 'Nothin' Shakin' (But The Leaves On The Trees)', 'To Know Her Is To Love Her', 'Little Queenie', 'Falling In Love Again', 'Ask Me Why', 'Be-Bop-A-Lula', 'Hallelujah I Love Her So', 'Red Sails In The Sunset', 'Everybody's Trying To Be My Baby', 'Matchbox', 'I'm Talking About You', 'Shimmy Shake', 'Long Tall Sally' and 'I Remember You'. An alternative album, featuring four different songs, is released in America on June 13. These additional tracks include: 'I'm Gonna Sit Right Down And Cry Over You', 'Where Have You Been All My Life', 'Till There Was You' and 'Sheila'. Incidentally, neither version contains all of the songs originally recorded back on December 31, 1962.
Friday May 6
Four days after an unofficial Beatles live recording reaches the shops, The Beatles At The Hollywood Bowl, a selection of tracks, re-mixed by George Martin, recorded during The Beatles' live concerts at the venues on August 23, 1964, and August 30, 1965, is released by EMI. EMI announce that they are anticipating sales close to one million copies and have earmarked up to £300,000 for the Hollywood Bowl promotion campaign. £245,000 of that will go towards three weeks of TV commercials comprising vintage footage of The Beatles live at the Hollywood Bowl venue back in 1964, £20,000 going to radio adverts while a further £25,000 has been allocated towards elaborate advertising boards to be displayed in record shops. The full track listing on the album is: side one: 'Twist And Shout', 'She's A Woman', 'Dizzy Miss Lizzy', 'Ticket To Ride', 'Can't Buy Me Love', 'Things We Said Today', 'Roll Over Beethoven'; side two: 'Boys', 'A Hard Day's Night', 'Help!', 'All My Loving', 'She Loves You', 'Long Tall Sally'.
Stories soon surface about how these tapes have languished in the Capitol Records archives in America for well over a decade. At the time of their recording, both the label and The Beatles deemed them unsuitable for release. One of the major reasons was that the unsophisticated Capitol three-track recording equipment was incapable of drowning out the screams of 17,000 hysterical fans. This made balance mixing impossible. Also, The Beatles, performing without any "fold-back" speakers, could not even hear what they were playing. The Beatles' main reason for not allowing these recordings to see the light of day back in the Sixties was because they did not contain any new Beatles' tracks, and instead showcased songs which were readily available on any official Beatles' record. It was agreed to shelve the recordings until the beginning of 1977 when EMI and Capitol, fresh from the successes of Rock 'N' Roll Music and the single re-issues in the UK, took a fresh look at the tapes, cajoled into doing so by some American radio stations who had started playing bootleg albums of the Hollywood Bowl live tapes, under the guise of playing the "original Capitol tapes".
Beatles producer George Martin takes up the story: "Bhaskar Menon, the president of Capitol Records, mentioned these tapes and asked me whether I'd listen to them because the company was interested in releasing an album. My immediate reaction was that, as far as I could remember, the original 1964 concert tapes had a rotten sound. I told Bhaskar: 'I don't think you've got anything here at all.' There have been an awful lot of bootleg recordings made of Beatles concerts around the world. But when I listened to the Hollywood Bowl tapes I was amazed at the rawness and vitality of The Beatles' singing. I'd quite forgotten what impact they had. So I told Bhaskar that I'd see if I could bring the tapes into line with today's recordings."
Working with the studio engineer Geoff Emerick, who had also worked with Martin on many of The Beatles' original sessions, their first task was to transfer the three-track tapes onto modem day 24-track recordings. Once accomplished, Martin's next task was to choose the material for the album. Some tracks were discarded due to the music being completely obliterated by the continuous screaming and, during one part of the show, a microphone packs up completely, rendering the live vocals inaudible for almost five minutes. "Both concerts were fairly identical in performance," Martin adds, "and there was very little variation in repertoire. So rather than try to keep the two performances chronologically separate, I thought the best thing to do was make a complete performance from the two."
Martin's next task was to gain permission from all of the ex-Beatles. "I had to go to New York anyway," he recalls, "so I rang John and told him about the recordings. I told him that I'd been very sceptical at first but now I was very enthusiastic because I thought the album would be a piece of history, which should be preserved. I said to John, 'I want you to hear it after I've gone. You can be as rude as you like, but if you don't like it give me a yell.' I spoke to him the following day and he was delighted with it."
Unsurprisingly, the reaction from both George and Ringo is not so enthusiastic.
Friday May 13
The UK release of Roger Daltrey's album One Of The Boys, which includes 'Giddy' written by Paul. (The American release takes place on June 16.)
Saturday May 14
The Beatles' episode of the Tony Palmer history of popular music All You Need Is Love is transmitted across the ITV network between 10:32 and 11:28pm. The show, titled Mighty Good, again tells the history of the group and again focuses on their influence on contemporary, mostly American, musicians. The 48-minute show, based on a script by Derek Taylor who is also interviewed, features additional interview material with Allan Williams, Brian Epstein's mother Queenie, George Martin, Murray 'The K' Kaufman, Taylor himself, Roger McGuinn of The Byrds, promoter Bill Graham and, from The Beach Boys, both Mike Love and Carl Wilson. Paul, sporting a tartan scarf, gives an exclusive interview and performs 'Yesterday', recorded during the American tour, which closes the show. Archive film used, most of which derives from Granada TV, together with excerpts from the 'Strawberry Fields Forever' and 'Lady Madonna' promotional films, the 1965 Shea Stadium documentary, 'All You Need Is Love' from the 1967 Our World live television broadcast, George receiving sitar tuition from Ravi Shankar during the filming of Raga in 1968 and John from the 1975 Old Grey Whistle Test interview. (Further Beatles clips, as well as more from the interview with Paul, is included in the series during the show which is dedicated to The Rolling Stones.)
The music press reveals that George Martin has been named as musical director for the upcoming musical film Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, which begins shooting in Holland this summer. (This follows on from the previous Robert Stigwood production John, Paul, George, Ringo... And Bert which, even after filming had begun during July of 1975, was eventually scrapped.)
Thursday May 26
The musical tribute show Beatlemania opens at the Winter Garden Theater in New York.
Saturday May 28
Melody Maker publishes a fascinating article on Voyle Gilmore, the man responsible for originally producing The Beatles' Hollywood Bowl audio tape recordings. Today, Gilmore is to be found running a boatyard and dry dock in Bethel Island, 60 miles outside of the Bay Area. He retired from Capitol in 1969 after 24 years service. At his Farrar Park dry dock home, he is naturally asked:
"Have you heard the recently released Beatles live album yet?"
Voyle: "I haven't had a chance yet... I will. George Martin ... he made such a speech. It sounds like he changed it, but I doubt it. There's not much he could do. It was recorded on three-track machines with half-inch tape. When The Beatles were first coming here, we (Capitol) would love to have a live album. I think Epstein would have gone for it, but the boys didn't go for it. They came from a poor background and they were always conscious of that. They felt a live album would be a rip-off because all the tunes were already recorded. Anyway, we took a sound truck up to the Hollywood Bowl and plugged directly into the soundboard with our mikes. The Bowl has a pretty good stereo sound system. They used to hold those stereo concerts, so we plugged our mikes in right there. George Martin was at the first concert. We parked several blocks away and took a cab up together. He wasn't around the sound truck that much. Oh, I think he stuck his head in and said, 'That sounds terrible', or something like that. He was more interested in hanging out backstage with the boys or going out front to see how it sounded out there, that sort of thing. The results weren't that bad. I kept thinking 'maybe we were going to get permission to release if so I took it back into the studio and worked on it awhile. I worked with the applause, edited it down, made it play, and EQ'd it quite a bit. The Beatles heard it and they all wanted tape copies. So I had five or six copies made and sent over. That's where the bootlegs must have got out, from The Beatles themselves. We had a system at Capitol and knew where all our copies were. They said they liked it, that it sounded pretty good, but they still didn't want to release it. Capitol called me a few months back and asked if I could help find the tapes in the library. Of course, I knew right where they were."
Tuesday May 31
George's single 'It's What You Value'/'Woman Don't You Cry For Me' is released in the UK.
The Suzy And The Red Stripes single 'Seaside Woman'/'B Side To Seaside' is released in America. Linda McCartney writes the A-side, which features Paul and Linda sharing the lead vocal, while Paul composes the B-side, which again features Linda on lead vocal. Paul also produces the record, which was not released in the UK until August 10, 1979. (Incidentally, the name Suzy And The Red Stripes originates from a brand of Jamaican beer.)
George and Olivia visit the Monte Carlo rally where they meet up with Ringo and Nancy Andrews. Also this month, at the Atlantic Studios in New York, Ringo records 'Just A Dream' during the sessions for the album Ringo The 4th. This period of recording sees the completion of the following tracks: 'Wings', 'Drowning In A Sea Of Love', 'Tango All Night', 'Gave It All Up', 'Out On The Streets', 'Can She Do It Like She Dances', 'Sneaking Sally Through The Alley', 'It's No Secret', 'Gypsies In Flight' and 'Simple Love Song'. Ringo also records the unreleased song 'By Your Side', as well as private recordings, inspired by his girlfriend Nancy Andrews, which feature the working titles of 'Nancy, Ringo, Vinnie And Friends' and 'Duet - Nancy And Ringo'. Later in the month, Ringo returns to Los Angeles, where he resumes recordings at the Cherokee Studios. These sessions produce the unreleased tracks 'Birmingham' and 'The Party' and another alternative version of 'Just A Dream'. Also this month, Ring O'Records release their debut single, 'It's All Over Now, Baby Blue' by Graham Bonnet.
At the end of the month, John, Yoko and their son Sean begin a four-month visit to Karuizawa in Japan to stay with Yoko's family, stopping over briefly in Hong Kong. During their stay at the Mandarin Hotel, they dine with David Bowie. In Karuizawa the Lennons are typical tourists, visiting temples and Onioshidashi, the popular spot on the Asama Mountain. John, Yoko and Sean take up residence at the Hotel Okura and also play host to Elliott Mintz who stays with them briefly. (They return to New York on October 6.)
Saturday June 4
The album The Beatles At The Hollywood Bowl reaches number one in the UK album charts. It is a record-breaking twelfth UK chart-topping album for the group.
Thursday June 9
In London, at a private court hearing, George consents to a decree nisi being granted to his wife Patti. (They had been married since January 21, 1966.)
Meanwhile, to coincide with a surge of Beatlemania currently gripping America, the new musical, suitably titled, Beatlemania opens (after a one week delay) on Broadway at the Winter Gardens Theater. The show features 49 Beatle songs lifted directly off the original records, and has been running in Boston for the last three weeks. Outside the theatres, a disclaimer notice is put up announcing: "This is an amazing assimilation of The Beatles - It is not the real thing!" A report from the show reads: "The audience went wild after each song and I had an uncanny feeling many times that I was back in time at a real Beatles concert. Mitch Weissman, who is unbelievably like Paul, has been mobbed many times in the New York streets and now has to wear dark glasses. Already the four lookalikes are doing TV and promotion work."
Saturday June 11
The Beatles Live At The Hollywood Bowl reaches number two in the US album charts.
Tuesday June 28
George is among the 300 guests at London's Savoy Hotel for a special 'Farewell from Britain' luncheon honouring Derek Taylor before he takes up his new post for Warner Brothers in California. The lunch, hosted by George Melly, features George and Kenny Everett recalling the lunacy of Apple in its heyday and, by way of a TV link-up, Ringo appears on screen from Los Angeles to pay his tribute as does Peter Asher and the top hierarchy of the LA music industry. Melly and John Chilton's Feetwarmers provide the music. Derek's wife Joan and their six children accompany him at the bash.
Thursday June 30
The final British battle over 'My Sweet Lord' against 'He's So Fine' is fought out in London's High Court. Both records are played in court before the judge Mr. Justice Slade, who is then informed that both parties have now agreed on a settlement.
At the Berwick Street Studios in London, working with the producer Hugh Murphy, Ringo records the following songs for the children's album Scouse The Mouse: 'I Know A Place', 'S.O.S.', 'A Mouse Like Me', 'Living In A Pet Shop', 'Scouse's Dream', 'Running Free', 'Boat Ride' and 'Scouse The Mouse'. Although originally planned to coincide with an animated Scouse The Mouse television special, based on a story by the actor Donald Pleasance, this part of the project never materialises due to trade union problems. (See the album's release details on December 9.)
During the middle of the month, the New York production of Beatlemania is doing great business. In one week alone (ending Sunday July 24), the theatre grosses $110,000 even though the ticket prices have been hiked up to between $12.50 and $13.50. (The average New York ticket prices for the top performers at this time are between $8.50 and $11.) Reviews of the show are also positive, surprising since many of the reviewers have had to pay their own way to get in to see the performance.
Friday July 15
Back in England, during the practice runs for Sunday's British Grand Prix, George is to be found in the VIP area at Silverstone race track.
Monday July 18 (until Saturday July 30)
In London, with funding from Saturday Night Live's Lorne Michaels, filming begins on The Rutles television special. Amongst the locations utilised is Queen's Park Rangers football ground at Loftus Road in Shepherd's Bush, which is thinly disguised as Che (Shea) Stadium. One week later, on July 25, production moves to Liverpool.
Saturday July 30
The Beatles Live! At The Star Club In Hamburg, Germany: 1962 reaches number 111 in the American album charts.
Sunday July 31
Now back in New York, George is interviewed by the radio station WNEW.
At London's Abbey Road Studios, Paul records 'Mull Of Kintyre' and completes the song 'Girls School', originally started back in March. He also returns to the unreleased "daft" punk track 'Boil Crisis', but admits he dare not issue it. "If I release it," Paul claims, "people will only slag me off. It's 'One night in the life of a kid named Sid, he scored with a broad in a pyramid ...' "
Monday August 1
Filming on The Rutles again returns to London where additional scenes are re-shot. Also filmed this week (on Tuesday August 2) is George's appearance as an ageing television reporter and Rolling Stone Ronnie Wood as a punk rocker! The first batch of filming in the UK is wrapped up on Thursday August 4. (Work on the show will resume on September 5.)
Saturday August 13
From his hotel room in Japan, John drafts a short postcard to Derek Taylor in England. It reads: "Hello Taylors, am in Alan Waits country, hi mountains, John, Yoko and Sean."
Inspired by the wonderful sights in Japan, and his freedom from both the confines of his Dakota apartment and a recording contract, John commits to tape a demo of the song 'Free As A Bird'.
Tuesday August 16
In Japan, following the death of his idol Elvis Presley, John issues a brief statement: "Nothing really effected me until Elvis!" This does not represent his true feelings on Elvis's death (see entry for October 4).
Around this time at Keith Moon's home at Victoria Point Road, Trancas, in the exclusive area of Malibu Beach, California, Ringo joins Keith to film scenes for inclusion in the film The Kids Are Alright, a documentary on the history of The Who, which is premiered at the Cannes Film Festival on Monday May 14, 1979. Ringo will also record several radio spots and appear in a special cinema trailer to promote the film.
Thursday August 25
Ringo's single 'Wings'/'Just A Dream' is released in America.
Sometime during this month John inadvertently gives his last public performance before a couple of total strangers in his suite at the Hotel Okura in Tokyo. A Japanese couple enter the room by mistake while John is strumming his guitar and singing 'Jealous Guy'. Because of its size the couple evidently assume that John's suite is a public room, that a waiter will arrive to serve them and that the man in the comer playing guitar is paid by the hotel to entertain guests. They wait politely for a few minutes listening to John but leave when no-one comes to take their drinks or food order.
Sunday September 4
In Los Angeles, Ringo, in another plug for his new single, gives a 60-minute interview to the DJ Dave Herman.
Monday September 5
For three weeks starting today, production on The Rutles continues in New York. Besides additional scenes for the programme, comical interviews with Mick Jagger and Paul Simon are also conducted. (Shooting in New York is concluded on September 24.) During one of the weekends in New York, Eric Idle and Basil Pao write the wonderful booklet to be featured inside The Rutles soundtrack album. When he is shown the results, George is so impressed that he arranges for them to meet Mo Austin, the head of Warner Brothers. Meanwhile, back in London, the first scenes shot between July 18 and August 4 are being edited.
Thursday September 8
Jimmy McCulloch leaves Wings and joins the reformed group Small Faces whose British tour is scheduled to start at the Birmingham Hippodrome on Monday September 12. Asked about Jimmy's departure, Paul remarks: "Jimmy has been playing some great guitar recently and it is a pity he is leaving, but problems have been building up for quite a while now and so the rest of us are happy to carry on without him."
Jimmy has this to say about his leaving: "I enjoyed playing with Wings and I learned a lot from Paul, but I felt it was time for a change and the ideal change for me was The Small Faces. They are old friends of mine whose music I have always enjoyed."
In a strange twist The Small Faces are supported by Blue, a band that McCulloch played in prior to joining Wings.
Monday September 12
Paul and Linda's son James Louis McCartney is born at the Avenue Clinic in St. John's Wood, London. He weighs 6 pounds 1 ounce.
Wednesday September 14
From his hotel room in Karuizawa, Japan, John scribbles (on American Airlines note paper), a short reply regarding a business proposition to Mike Turner in New York. "Sounds interesting. We'll be back in USA in Oct'. We got court cases, films to edit, and museums to fill, if we think of anything we'll call or write." In conclusion, John writes: "In flight - yes. Attention: Hello New York. Location: Here and there."
Meanwhile back in England, at the Kilburn Gaumont, Mick Jagger and Ronnie Wood are among the all-star guests present at Paul's annual Buddy Holly Week celebratory concerts. Both Paul and Linda are naturally in attendance.
Friday September 16
Ringo's single 'Drowning In A Sea Of Love'/'Just A Dream' is released in the UK. (The American release takes place on October 18.)
Tuesday September 20
Ringo's album Ringo the 4th is released in the UK. (The American release takes place on September 26.)
Saturday September 24
In the annual Melody Maker reader's poll, Paul is voted the fifth best bass player of 1977.
Meanwhile, filming on The Rutles moves, for one week, to New Orleans.
Friday September 30
The production team of The Rutles head back to England to resume work on additional scenes that need to be re-shot. Filming officially concludes on Wednesday October 5.
Tuesday October 4
At the end of their four-month vacation, John and Yoko hold a 45-minute press conference at the Hotel Okura in Tokyo, prior to returning home to New York. John announces that his highest priority for the next several years will be the raising of his son Sean and that his creative endeavours would be secondary. Before a handful of reporters, John thanks the Japanese people for respecting their privacy, and remarks: "We've basically decided, without a great decision, to be with our baby as much as we can until we feel we can take the time off to indulge ourselves in creating things outside the family. Maybe when he's three, four or five, then we'll think about creating something else other than the child."
Wearing an expensive black two-piece suit, with a white and pearl-grey tie, John continues: "We really have nothing to say." Even so, the Japanese press ask John his opinions on the recent death of Elvis Presley, one of his great idols.
"Elvis died when he went into the army," says John. "Up until he joined the Army I thought it was beautiful music, and Elvis was for me and my generation what The Beatles were to the Sixties. I basically became a musician because of Elvis Presley. I never did concerts to influence people. I did them for many reasons, and since 1966 I have not performed for money, only charity."
Another reporter asks the question that everyone present just knew was coming, "Will The Beatles revive?"
"I doubt it very much," is John's simple reply. He then answers questions about punk rock, giving the impression that for the last year he paid little attention to today's music. After questions about his returning to Britain ("at some point" is his reply) and recording again, the press conference concludes. As the journalists get ready to depart, John is asked, "Why do you appear to be so different now?" He replies: "Basically, I'm now a Zen pagan." Yoko sat beside John throughout the conference and translated his words.
When John does return to their Dakota apartment (on October 6), he continues to record various home demos, such as the unreleased 'Mirror Mirror (On The Wall)' and the first version of 'Real Love', tracks that are intended for a planned stage musical, entitled The Ballad Of John And Yoko.
Saturday October 8 & Sunday October 9
A two-day Beatles convention takes place in the UK, this time at Mr. Pickwick's Club in Fraser Street, Liverpool 3. The event, subtitled "24 Hours Of Beatle Happenings" is arranged by Allan Williams and Bob Wooler, the former DJ at the Cavern Club. Amongst the attractions are the latest Liverpool groups, including Black Maria, Glass Roots and the Acme Novelty Band, plus Beatle-Brain and Lookalike competitions, memorabilia displays, guest DJs and film shows. A special guest, for Beatle fans that is, is Raymond Jones, now 37, the man responsible for putting Epstein on to The Beatles when he went into Eppy's record shop asking for a copy of 'My Bonnie'. "No, I had no idea what I started back in '62," he remarks. "The Beatles brought some happiness didn't they?"
Fans are also given the chance (for an extra charge of 50p) to go on a Magical History Tour bus ride around "Beatle Landmarks" in Liverpool on the Sunday morning. This takes in twenty different sites, from Gulliver's nightclub (formerly the Peppermint Lounge) to the now demolished Cavern Club in Mathew Street where dewy-eyed fans stood and stared at the rubble remains of this world-famous club. Richard Quick, of the English Tourist Board, remarks at the spot: "Where the Cavern is, it will probably become another hideous office block once British Rail have used the site for the reason they bought it, which was to make it possible to build an underground railway system." The weekend event, which brought in an attendance of around 2,000, kicks off with an opening speech by the Lord Mayor of Liverpool, Councillor Peter Orr, and runs from 1pm to lam with tickets costing £3 for both days or £2 for one.
Tuesday October 11
Back in the States, the New York Federal Court indicts Allen Klein for tax evasion.
Thursday October 13
At Paul's Scottish farmhouse, working with director Michael Lindsay-Hogg, Paul, Linda and Denny film the first promotional clip for their next single 'Mull Of Kintyre'. Paul is seen climbing off a fence and walking with his acoustic guitar while lip-synching the vocals. Linda, Denny and The Campbeltown Pipes Band join him later in the clip. Additional scenes of local residents joining Wings around a fire to sing along are shot later this evening. In between takes, Linda is on hand to keep everyone warm with a non-stop supply of tea. (The group will record a second clip for 'Mull Of Kintyre' on December 2 - see entry.)
Tuesday October 18
To celebrate the Queen's Silver Jubilee, the BPI (British Phonographic Industry) hold a ceremony at the Wembley Conference Centre in London to celebrate the best British music since 1952. The Beatles are The Best British Group 1952-1977 and Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band is the Best British Pop Album 1952-1977. Highlights of the event are transmitted across the ITV network on Thursday October 20 between 8:01 and 8:59pm, in a programme called Britannia Awards For Recorded Music. A clip from the 'Ticket To Ride' sequence from The Beatles' 1965 film Help! is shown during the broadcast.
Wednesday October 19
By a huge majority vote of 9 to 1, Liverpool City Council reject a plan to build a lasting monument in honour of The Beatles in Liverpool, a decision they will come to regret. Fans in the UK throw up their arms in anguish.
Friday October 21
The double album Beatles compilation Love Songs is released in America. (The release takes place in the UK on November 19.) The track listing is as follows: 'Yesterday', 'I'll Follow The Sun', 'I Need You', 'Girl', 'In My Life', 'Words Of Love', 'Here, There And Everywhere', 'Something', 'And I Love Her', 'If I Fell', 'I'll Be Back', 'Tell Me What You See', 'Yes It Is', 'Michelle', 'It's Only Love', 'You're Gonna Lose That Girl', 'Every Little Thing', 'For No One', 'She's Leaving Home', 'The Long And Winding Road', 'This Boy', 'Norwegian Wood (This Bird Has Flown)', 'You've Got To Hide Your Love Away', 'I Will' and 'P.S. I Love You'.
Tuesday October 25
Wings hold additional recording sessions for London Town at EMI's Abbey Road studios in London. (These will continue until December 14). During this period, Paul also records the unreleased song 'Waterspout', which is originally scheduled to appear on the, ultimately rejected, 1981 Cold Cuts album. Incidentally, a release of the song is scheduled on Paul's 1987 All The Best greatest hits compilation but, again, this fails to materialise.
In America, The Beatles' Capitol single 'Girl'/'You're Gonna Lose That Girl', taken from the Love Songs compilation, scheduled for release today, is cancelled.
For no apparent reason, Joe English becomes the latest member to leave Wings.
Friday November 11
The Wings single 'Mull Of Kintyre'/'Girls School' is released in the UK. (The American release takes place on November 14 with the A- and B-sides reversed.) To coincide with its release, Paul, Linda and Denny are presented, at Abbey Road studios, with gold and silver discs for the album Wings At The Speed Of Sound. The gathering is also treated to a first showing, on a small television set, of the completed 'Mull Of Kintyre' promotional film (version one, shot at their Scottish farmhouse on October 13).
Reporters also ask Paul about his plans for 1978. "I plan to play a tour of small British clubs next year," he replies. "I also have an ambition to play Joe's cafe and sing requests from the man in the audience. It's the atmosphere of the man in the street."
During the get-together, Linda is presented with a specially made small T-shirt, featuring a picture of Paul and Linda posing in hospital with their new-bom child James, shortly after his birth on September 12.
'Mull Of Kintyre', besides its other accolades, will go on to win the prestigious Ivor Novello award for the Best Selling A-Side of 1977 and is also voted by Capitol Radio in London as 'The Best Single Of 1977'. At a luncheon at London's Grosvenor House Hotel, Paul and Linda receive the award from Lord George Brown.
Paul is later criticised in the UK press when it is revealed that, even after all the money the song generated around the world, he paid The Campbeltown Pipes Band only a standard union rate for playing on 'Mull Of Kintyre'.
To promote the single today, Paul gives a live interview in London to Capital Radio.
Saturday November 12
Further promotions for 'Mull Of Kintyre' occur when Paul gives a live interview to BBC Radio One.
Ringo The 4th reaches number 162 in the American album charts.
Sunday November 13
In England, an interview with George is published in the News Of The World newspaper.
Saturday November 19
To promote his new single 'Mull Of Kintyre', Melody Maker publishes an interview with Paul by Chris Welch done in Abbey Road studio number two. Paul talks about the London Town album recordings, carried out during May of this year in the Virgin Islands:
"We hired a charter boat that people use for holidays. The captain went spare when he saw all the instruments. We remodelled his boat for him, which he wasn't too keen on. We converted his lounge into a studio and we turned another deck into a sound control room, and it was fantastic! We had a recording boat and two others we stayed on. We didn't have any problems with salt water in the machines or sharks attacking us. At night, there was much merriment, leaping from top decks into uncharted waters and stuff. I had a couple too many one night and nearly broke something jumping from one boat to another. But then you always break yourself up on holiday. The studio worked out incredibly well and the very first day we got a track down. There was a nice free feeling. We'd swim in the day and record at night. We've come back to Abbey Road here to finish it all off. We're overdubbing and putting on main vocals."
On 'Mull Of Kintyre': "It's Scottish. It sounds so different from the songs we did on the boat, we thought it should be a single and it sounds very Christmassy and New Yeary. It's kind of 'glass of ale in your hand, leaning up against the bar' tune. We had the local pipe band join in and we took a mobile studio up to Scotland and put the equipment in an old barn. We had The Campbeltown Band and they were great-just pipes and drums. It was interesting writing for them. You can't just write any old tune, because they can't play every note in a normal scale. It's a double A-side. The other one, 'Girls School', I wrote after reading the back pages of those American entertainment guides. These days there are whole pages of X films, y'know the porn page? It's all titles like School Mistress and The Woman Trainer. I just put them all together in the lyrics and called it 'Girls School'. It's about a pornographic St. Trinians. We made it a double A because the B-sides always get swallowed. You never hear them. At least 'Girls School' will get played a bit. 'Mull Of Kintyre' is different from anything we've done before ... but sure. It's Wings. It's definitely not punk."
Sunday November 20
At his Friar Park mansion, George writes the lyrics to the song 'Faster'.
At the Elite Recording Studios in the Bahamas and the Canadian based premises of The Can-Base Studios and Nimbus 9, the recording sessions for Ringo's next album Bad Boy are carried out. The recordings produce the following songs: 'Lipstick Traces', 'Old Time Relovin' ', 'Who Needs A Heart', 'Bad Boy', 'Heart On My Sleeve', 'Where Did Our Love Go', 'Tonight', 'Hard Times', 'Monkey See, Monkey Do' and 'A Man Like Me', a re-recording of the track 'A Mouse Like Me', as previously featured on the Scouse The Mouse album. During this period, Ringo also records, with Davy Jones of The Monkees providing backing vocals, the short songs 'Simple Life' and 'I Love My Suit' for inclusion in five different Simple Life leisure suits commercials for broadcast on Japanese Television.
On a back-lot at the Universal Studios in Hollywood, filming begins on Beatles 4 Ever, a movie about a group of New Jersey teenagers who travel to New York City to see The Beatles' debut on The Ed Sullivan Show on February 9,1964. (The film will be released in the UK during October 1978, sporting the alternative title of I Want To Hold Your Hand.)
As the rush to cash in on anything Beatles' related in America reaches fever pitch, this same month sees the completion, in Los Angeles, of another Beatles flick, this time Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band, an all-star musical headed by The Bee Gees and Peter Frampton. The respected Rolling Stone magazine in America causes near hysteria when they announce that: "John, Paul, George and Ringo are to make an appearance in the film."
Meanwhile, the Broadway musical Beatlemania, featuring the original New York cast, is booked into the Los Angeles' Shubert Theater for a run of at least 19 weeks. While in New York, in order to keep the stage play running, a new cast is hastily assembled.
On a sad note, Beatles fans in New York are horrified at the sight of John's famous vintage white Rolls Royce car sitting neglected in an inch-deep pool of oily water in a $100 a month private garage.
Thursday December 1
Today's ITN News (transmitted across the ITV network between 5:45 and 6:00pm) features Paul at Abbey Road studios talking briefly about 'Mull Of Kintyre' with the reporter Peter Sharp.
Friday December 2
During a further break from London Town recordings in Abbey Road Studio No. 2, Paul films a much lengthier interview, this time with Melvyn Bragg, for inclusion in the very first edition of the new London Weekend Television arts programme The South Bank Show (transmitted across the ITV network on Sunday January 14 1978 between 10:16 and 11:13pm). During the course of the 30-minute feature, subtitied Paul McCartney: Songsmith, Paul discusses a number of subjects with Melvin including his childhood, his father, early song writing with John, The Beatles not releasing 'How Do You Do It?', making it big in America, writing 'Eleanor Rigby', 'Yesterday' and 'When I'm 64', the break up of The Beatles and the early days of Wings. Music featured in the show includes Paul recording his guitar and vocal parts to 'Mull Of Kintyre', a brief performance on piano of 'I Lost My Little Girl', the first song he ever wrote, an impromptu attempt to write a song called 'Melvin Bragg' and a "jam" of the track 'Lucille' featuring Denny on guitar joining Paul on drums. Archive clips featured in the programme include The Beatles performing 'Love Me Do' from the 1963 BBC TV programme The Mersey Sound, 'I Feel Fine' from the 1965 Shea Stadium concert and both 'Hi Hi Hi' and 'Maybe I'm Amazed' from the 1973 ATV/ITC special James Paul McCartney.
After Paul has filmed the South Bank Show interview with Melvyn Bragg, he joins Linda and Denny to shoot the second promotional clip for 'Mull Of Kintyre'. This bizarre clip features Wings miming 'Mull Of Kintyre' while sitting around a garden patio table, all intercut with scenes from the unreleased 1972 MPL Bruce McMouse film. This version is never transmitted and remains unreleased to this day.
Saturday December 3
On the day that the Wings' single 'Mull Of Kintyre' (co-written by Paul and Denny) reaches number 1 in the UK singles charts, where it will remain for nine weeks, the group begin several additional recording sessions for London Town, this time at George Martin's AIR studios in London. (These will continue until December 14.)
Friday December 9
The various artists album Scouse The Mouse is released in the UK only by Polydor. Joining Ringo, who, as Scouse, only sings on eight of the fifteen tracks, are Barbara Dickson as Molly Jolly, Ben Chatterley as Olly Jolly, Adam Faith as Bonce, Lucy Pleasance as Holly Jolly and Rick Jones as Louey The Gull. Inside early copies of the album is an entrance form to a Scouse The Mouse colouring and drawing competition, open to children aged between five and ten, with two hundred copies of an illustrated Scouse The Mouse book as a prize. This book, published by the New English Library, features the story by Donald Pleasance accompanied by the drawings of Gerry Potterton.
While the first promotional film clip of 'Mull Of Kintyre' is being transmitted in America on the programme Midnight Special, Wings are to be found on stage two at the Elstree film studios in Hertfordshire, filming a third promotional film clip for 'Mull Of Kintyre'. Often referred to by Beatles collectors as the 'Misty' version, this clip features Paul, Linda and Denny singing the tune against a backdrop of rocks with rolling fog where, towards the end of the clip. The Campbeltown Pipes Band march into shot. Not quite as commonly shown as the first 'Mull Of Kintyre' clip, this version, directed by Nicholas Ferguson, who previously directed The Beatles' Intertel Studio promotional films from November 1965, has endured a quite healthy broadcasting history over the years around the world. (Final editing on the clip takes place on Sunday December 11.)
Saturday December 10
At the BBC TV Theatre in Shepherd's Bush, London, Wings record an appearance on the BBC1 variety show The Mike Yarwood Christmas Show. The group perform in a comedy sketch with Yarwood, who is dressed as a 'Chunky Punky', a punk-rocker version of Dennis Healey, the then Chancellor of the Exchequer. Paul is seen performing at a piano and when Linda informs him that Dennis is dropping in to see him, he promptly hides a bundle of bank-notes in the lid of the piano. Wings return later in the programme to mime a version of 'Mull Of Kintyre' backed by The Campbeltown Pipes Band. The show, which is transmitted on Christmas Day on BBC1 between 8:21 and 8:55, is a great success, with an estimated 40% of the British population tuning in. The audience viewing figures are an estimated 21.4 million! (Incidentally, The Campbeltown Pipes Band, this month, are voted the Top Scots Entertainers of the Year.)
Today, The Beatles' double album compilation Love Songs reaches number 54 in the American charts.
Sunday December 11
In London, the third 'Mull Of Kintyre' promotional film (the misty version) is edited and prepared today for television distribution around Europe.
Saturday December 17
The one millionth copy of 'Mull Of Kintyre' is sold to Mr. David Ackroyd, a Green Goddess soldier-fireman, and thus becomes the first ever person to receive a gold disc for a purchase of a standard seven inch single. Ackroyd will receive the disc, as well as a Christmas hamper, from Paul and Wings in a special celebration ceremony at Paul's MPL offices in Soho Square, London. 'Mull Of Kintyre' will go on to sell over 2.5 million copies, replacing 'She Loves You' as the UK's biggest-selling record. In 1985, 'Kintyre's sales will be eclipsed by Band-Aid's 'Do They Know It's Christmas' which will briefly feature Paul on the B-side.
In 1978, Paul remarks about 'Mull Of Kintyre': "I nearly didn't put it out... I knew old folks, Scottish people, The Campbeltown Pipers liked it... but at that time everything was punk. But I checked it with a lotta young kids and they liked it, so we went on with it"
An exhibition of Linda's pictures opens at the Jan Baum and Iris Silverman Gallery in Los Angeles, California. The show will run until January 28,1978.
At the Row Barge public house near his home in Henley-on-Thames, George gives an impromptu performance on guitar to various regulars. It is his first live appearance, albeit unannounced, in three years. Shortly afterwards, George and Olivia leave for their two-month Christmas vacation in Hawaii.
The Beatles' Love Songs double album reaches number seven in the UK charts.
December (until Friday December 23)
Additional recordings take place for the album London Town. These sessions produce additional work on: 'Backwards Traveller'/'Cuff Link', 'Children Children', 'Girlfriend' and 'Name And Address', a tribute to the style of Elvis Presley, plus the unreleased track 'Waterspout'.
In New York, at the Dakota, John is still recording home demos, amongst them the unreleased song 'One Of The Boys'.
Julian visits his father in New York to celebrate the festive period. A picture is taken of them sleighing in the snow in Central Park.
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