Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Apple Scruffs

From the Longest Cocktail Party by Richard DiLello

The House Hippie saw them standing in quiet knots of two and threes all through that first Wigmore Street summer and thought to himself, "They'll go away when the weather gets bad." He was wrong.

After seeing them day after day for month after month he started looking at them. He noticed a handful of faces that were permanent pavement fixtures. When he went to deliver a parcel to Paul McCartney's house they would be there. When he had to go to Abbey Road they were there. When a shorter journey was involved to Trident Studios where one of them might be working they were there.

They would be standing by the cast-iron white picket fence outside Number 3 when he went in at ten and some nights leaving at eight they would still be there. The faces would remind him that he had seen them at least half a dozen times that day as he had exited on a half of dozen separate missions.

There are Beatle fans and there are Beatles fans; that much he knew. It was becoming clearer to The House Hippie that these girls were not just any old Beatle fans. They were always positioned on opposite sides of the steps when the obvious, one-day-wonder fans from America and Europe were out in force for an unimpressive two-hour vigil. They retained an aloofness from these hysterical screamers that bordered on supreme dignity.

It never mattered what the weather was doing. They stood there and allowed the rain to soak them and the wind to cut through their young-girl clothes. At last it dawned on him. He knew they would be there longer than anyone else; after everyone else had left, they would still be there.


In December of 1974, Paul and Linda came into NYC and spent about a week doing some holiday shopping and seeing a few Broadway plays. One of those plays was Equus (which had a revival this past year on Broadway). They didn't try to hid who they were this time around, and they were spotted by many fans for autographs and photos.

Monday, December 28, 2009

What is this?

Someone posted this on the Beatles livejournal photo blog (link is listed to the left). Anyone know when and where this photo was taken? It looks to me like it is from 1965 around the making of the Help! movie. I have no clue who the guy who isn't a Beatle might be. But I like this photo a lot.  (find the answer to my questions in the comments section)

George George George George

I don't know if these are George "fan photos." For all I know the people in the first and last ones are famous and I just don't recognize them. Regardless....they are cool photos of George Harrison!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Run away Beatles fan

I recently bought off ebay a magazine called "It was 20 years ago today" which reproduced hundreds of Beatles newspaper articles and advertisements. I was a little surprised by how many stories I read about Beatles fans from America who ran away from home to London in hopes of meeting the Beatles. This article is about one such fan that succeeded! Please note that the name of the fan was deleted from my copy of the story. I am posting photos of the Beatles backstage in Stockton in 1964, which was around the time this fan met the Beatles in England, however they do not directly match the story.

3000 Mile Pilgrimage Ends for Beatle Fan, 13

Beatle fan (name) a 13 year old runaway from Newton, Massachusetts, ended her two-week long, 3,000 mile pilgrimage when she finally met her idols backstage at London's Astoria Palace.

"The girls back home will never believe me!" she sighed as she munched on a hot dog in the dressing room of the shaggy-haired quartet. "I'm still in a daze," she said, "I began to think I'd never see them."
(Name) who is said to have a genius I.Q. rating, took $400 from her savings account and headed for London to meet the Beatles. A friend provided her with lodging until she could track them down.
"So this is the little girl we've been reading about," said drummer Ringo Starr.

"I don't think we've been to Boston," said George Harrison.

"We have," interjected Paul McCartney, That's where where we had the tea party."

(Name)'s mother (Name of mother deleted) flew over from the U.S. Friday and found her daughter, but she didn't seem angry about the escapade.
"They're such nice boys," she said. "I've become a Beatle fan myself."

They were to fly back to Boston today so that (Name) could return to school.

George's Dark Horse Tour

For several years I have been trying to date photos of George during his 1974 Dark Horse Tour. In reading a wonderful issue of "The Harrison Alliance" fanzine that was dedicated in detail to the tour (really this thing is an amazing magazine on the topic!) I learned why I have been having so much trouble. George had an intermission during the show where he went and changed clothes! No wonder I am so confused with what outfit he wore at what date! Geesh! Most of the concerts had a matinee and an evening performance, so we are looking at about 4 difference sets of clothing for one date. Ahh! Anyhow...here are some fan photos from the tour.

Rocky Raccoon?

I located a "new" Paul McCartney fan photo online. The photo and the caption are from a Russian Beatles page. To my surprise, the person who posted it, posted this comment in English!

The fan photo was snapped on the 13th of August 1968 by a 18 year old Beatles fan Egil Gjerde, and speculation is that this might be the accordion from "Rocky Raccoon" on The Beatles (White Album). The song was recorded August 15th. The accordion player on Rocky Raccoon has never been documented, maybe this is the one!

It is a really neat photo because you don't always see Paul McCartney leaving Cavendish holding an accordion!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Apple Christmas Party 1968

Since it is Christmas Eve, I thought I would post the story of the Apple Christmas Party as published in Beatle fan turned employee, Richard DiLello's book 'The Longest Cocktail Party'. The photos came from that book as well.

Not only was there going to be a conjurer, a Yuletide tree, acres of food and oceans of drink, but John and Yoko agreed to dress up as Father and Mother Christmas and hand out presents to all the children. The crowing glory of the elaborate, stand-up buffet dinner was a 43 pound turkey billed by the supplying butchers as the Largest Turkey in Great Britain.

December 23. Preparations had begun at nine that morning. The children's party was scheduled for 2:30 in Peter Brown's office. At six o'clock the adults' version of the children's party would being in Neil's office. By 11 o'clock the Press Office was filled to overload the Christmas-season glut of good time Charlies on their record company to record company marathon sprint for alcohol, inside talk and free LP's. Of all the record companies in London, Apple was number one on the list for abandoned cordiality and excessive generosity.

By 11:30 the Black Room was swollen to standing room only proportions with hashish smokers puffing their brains out while the front office catered to the scotch and Coke brigade. By noon all pretense had been dropped and the hash heads were indistinguishable from the juicers. The telephones that refused to quit were barely audible above the record player turned to three-quarter volume.
By three o'clock Peter Brown's office was a scene of unparalleled frenzy as more than a hundred children screamed and smashed their way through a mountain of ice cream, cake and sausage rolls, impatiently clamoring to be entertained by the ventriloquist and conjuror they had been promised.

At last Ernest Castro and April, entertainers to the Queen and Duke of Cornwall and the late Sir Winston Churchill, made their entrance. The roar of recognition form a hundred pint-sized Frankensteins just have been honeyed music to their ears. In the greatest tradition of English garden party entertainers, they lanced into their live wire routine of silvered voice projections, sleight of hand wonders and barnyard beast imitations. The eardrum-shattering squeals of delights from the youngsters did not decrease one decibel the entire length of their performance. They closed the show with a sizzling rendition of Lettuce Leaf Hop.

John and Yoko in full Christmas drag were waiting for them in the Press Office when the show let out. Mary Hopkin had joined them to lend an additional two paws to the distribution of gifts. Unrattled by the greedy stampede for toys, John Lennon stood calmly in the middle of the room, deadpan, muttering through the false beard on top of his own beard, "Ho, ho, ho."

From the reception lounge to the Press Office the party goers lined the walls and the landings, filling the building with roof-lifting talk, blue smoke and the rumble of several hundred churning, empty stomachs. The Largest Turkey in Great Britain was locked safely behind the kitchen door away from an increasingly restless crowd. The kitchen counter and sideboard were barely holding up under the weight of a thousand assorted hor oeuvres, platters of cold meat and jellied fish, salads, cakes, bowls of fruit and boiled sweets, biscuits and cheese lined the floor.

John and Yoko, freed from the burden of their costumes, sat on the Press Office floor surrounded by Emily's family (the family of homeless hippies that had taken residency at Apple). The Press Officer hovered nearby, glass in hand, cigarette in mouth, hoping that his employer would not be Beatled unmercifully on this day of all days. The noise level in the room was more suitable for lip reading than conversational audibility.

It took only three seconds for this atmosphere of intense gaiety to turn radically and almost irrevocably sour. Frisco Pete (one of the Hell's Angels George had "invited"), elbows pumping him energetically through the crowd, covered the length of the room in for enormous strides. HE poised menacingly over the slight figures of John and Yoko.

"What the f$%* is goin' on in this place?!?!" he screamed at them. The room dropped into a clammy, itchy silence. No one moved.

"WE wanna eat! What's all this sh$# about havin' to wait until seven?!?"

Mavis' husband, Alan, gallantly interrupted Frisco Pete with a request for a little consideration for the situation. His efforts were rewarded with a single closed-fish punch, carefully measured by a man who knew full well the power of his own strength. The room darkened. Frisco Pete returned his attention to John Lennon.

"You got more f$--in' food in that kitchen than there are people and it's all locked up and those two f$%!in broads upstairs tell me I've gotta wait until 7:00 just like everybody else! There's a forty-three pound turkey in that kitchen and I want some of it now!!!"

John Lennon, at this moment in his life a squeamish vegetarian, looked up at the frightening figure of Frisco Pete in total bewilderment. He knew nothing of the release schedule on the Largest Turkey in Great Britain. The Press Officer turned to the House Hippie and told him to fetch Peter Brown without any further delay. With relief he found him outside in the hall talking to Ron Kass. "Peter, you'd better come inside right away" and the House Hippie pulled him by the arm, fearing the loss of precious seconds.

"I don't know where those f#%!in' heads of yours are but where I come from when we got food we feed people, not starve them!" Peter Brown glimpsed in two blinks what was happening. The House Hippie gulped and closed his eyes as Peter walked calmly up to the San Francisco chapter of the Hell's Angels Motorcycle Club. Tapping him lightly on the shoulder, Peter Brown moved between John Lennon and Frisco Pete just as a fresh flow of verbal punches was about to begin. An audible intake of breaths circled the room.
"Now listen, Pete, we have every intention of feeding you and I apologize for the delay but I was hoping you could appreciate that the kitchen staff have been working since 9:00 and they've been under considerable pressure. We're waiting for the caterers to finish laying the tables and it shouldn't take more than another ten minutes and then we can all go downstairs and gorge ourselves to death but please, I beg you, be patient."

That did it! An up-front answer to an up-front question. Frisco Pete shook his head once, turned and left the room. In the course of 60 seconds Peter Brown had become the hero of the Battle for the Largest Turkey in Great Britain.

When the door to Neil's office was thrown open ten minutes later everyone could see it was going to be a sumptuous feast. The massive catering tables buckling to support food and drink ran the length of three walls Frisco Pete was the firs tot reach the main table where the Largest Turkey in Great Britain sat. Before the waiter had a chance to work up his best carving voice to say, "And would you like white or dark meat, sir?" Pete grabbed a firm hold on the poor dead bird's body and without any further ceremony ripped the turkey's left leg from its torso. IT easily weighed four pounds and more closely resembled a caveman's hunting club than a turkey leg. The hordes were right behind him in full force. By midnight there was nothing left but the washing up. It was a very fine party, just as the Press Officer said it would be.

Aunt Mimi

Photo removed by request of photograher. :(

If you are related to a Beatle in any way, fans will want to take your photograph. That is just a fact of life. If you can't meet a Beatle, why not meet someone who is related to one? I have met several Beatles relatives over the years: Lousie Harrison, Ruth McCartney (and her mom) are two that quickly pop in my mind. One of the people that fans loved to meet was John's Aunt Mimi, the woman who raised him in Liverpool. Here is one fan photo of Mimi and a cousin of John's.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Old Fred's John encouters of the late 1970's

Thank you to Old Fred at the 910 Forum for posting his stories of when he met John Lennon. Also thanks to him for allowing me to post his stories on this blog. It is such a shame that John wasn't signing autographs that day, but at least Old Fred has the memory of speaking with John. I added some photos because I hate posts without photos, but they are not Fred's photos (just in case someone thought they might be)

In 1978 I was with friends around Central Park West when I realized that I was very near the Dakota. I went over on the off-chance that I might see John. When I arrived there was already a group of fans gathered at the entrance of the Dakota. The Lennon's nanny came out of the entrance with baby Sean in the stroller and headed off to Central Park.

A few minutes later John and Yoko strolled out. They said hello to the fans and asked that they not be followed as they were going shopping and would be back soon later. I waited till they were down the block a bit then I started to follow, but at a distance. Another fan also followed and he went up to say hello to John. I saw John say something to him and the fan walked off in my direction. I asked him what John said he dejectedly answered that John pretty much said "piss off!". He was pretty down about it and I tried to soften the blow for him by saying that John probably just wanted a little privacy.

I went back to the Dakota and after a while, John & Yoko returned in a cab with parcels which they handed to the doorman. Some fans handed John & Yoko baby gifts for Sean which they accepted and then they headed back inside the Dakota.

A year later in 1979, I decided to head back to the Dakota with the hope of getting an autograph from John on my copy of 'In His Own Write'. I waited across the street from the Dakota at Central Park West and waited.

About an hour or so later I noticed a horse-drawn hansom cab across the street from the Dakota and that there was a man and woman in it and the woman looked familiar. I then realized that the woman was Yoko, and the man next to her was John. I raced across the street to the entrance of the Dakota and waited for the cab to pull up. John got out and I nervously asked if he would sign my book. He looked at me and in a pleasant voice said "I'm sorry, but I don't give autographs". I said "OK", and watched as John & Yoko entered the Dakota. I knew enough not to press for the autograph request, because if John said "No" nice the first time, he wouldn't be nice about it the second time. I felt there would always be another chance.

Post George Pattie

These fan photos of Pattie Boyd were taken after her and George had split. She was with Eric Clapton by this point, but still as popular as ever with the fans! They actually were taken during Eric's tour in 1978. They were in Chicago and Pattie went to the hotel gift shop to by some magazines. Fans spotted her and got her autograph and took some photos.

marilyn doerflers part 2

More Marilyn Doeflers photos. The one with George I just posted, but this one is more complete. I wish they were much larger...

marilyn doerflers

Marilyn Doeflers was a photographer that traveled with the Beatles on all 3 of their North American Tours. She took some nice, candid photos of the guys that were seen in many of the teen magazines and have been passed around traveling circles for years. Here are two of the photos she took during the 1966 tour as well as three photos that have her in them.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Paul's leather jacket

Here is the continuous saga of Paul McCartney and the various jackets he has wore through the years. We now see Paul in the early 1980's, which was a time when he was frequently seen with a leather jacket. Let's hope it was a FAKE leather jacket.....

Patty J. again...

I have posted these photos before along with the wonderful story of how a fan named Pattie was able to meet George, Patti and his family in Liverpool in 1966. Here are the photos again, but slightly better....

Beatles in Detroit 1964

A photo taken by a fan's father at the Detroit press conference in September 1964.

Haileybury Junior School

Here is an interesting photo. Ringo is sitting with his son, Zak, in the Spring of 1978. At the time Zak was a student at Haileybury Junior School, which was a boarding school for boy in Windsor. Ringo had came to visit Zak at his school for "Speech Day" (Not sure what that is). The photo was taken by a fellow student at the school.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

1967 George photos

I can't believe I didn't already have these in my files and posted them sooner. However here are some good black and white photos of George during 1967.