Wednesday, June 22, 2016

The Bravo-Beatles-Blitztournee - A book Review

Thorsten Knublauch's book about the Beatles' 1966 German Blitz tour came out seven years ago.  In preparing for the 50th anniversary of the tour, I thought it would be a good idea to re-read this book.

This book was taken from the book he and Axel Korinth wrote called Komm, Gib Mir Deine Hand- Die Beatles in Deutschland 1960-1970, which is all in German.   I read the English translation of the book.  Because English isn't the author's first language, the teacher in me noticed a few grammatical erros, but it didn't take away from the book.

It is obvious that Thorsten did a LOT of research in writing this book.  He loves the Beatles and has a passion for the Beatles in Germany.  As a Beatles fan, you can't help but get excited about the 1966 German tour as you read.

The book goes into detail about the Munich, Essens and Hamburg concerts.  Everything from booking the venues, to ticket sales, to instruments is all covered in this book.  There even is hand-drawn diagrams of the venues, which  I found to be very helpful when visioning the concerts.  

There is also a bit of information about the train the Beatles used to travel through Germany on the tour.  You get to learn what they ate and who interviewed them as they traveled.

All of the press conferences given during the tour are printed int eh book.  You quickly learn how stupid the questions the press asked had become.   Why were they asked what time it was?  John got a little ticked off at the questioning and who could blame him?

I found it interesting that Peter & Gordon were one of the opening acts and they got the best response from the Beatle fans even though they had never had a hit in Germany.   It was also interesting learning the identities of the old friends from Hamburg that came to visit the Beatles when the returned to the city.    Interestingly, Astrid was there, but did not see the Beatles backstage as the other did.   She did, however, hang out with them after the show and the Beatles did NOT go to the Star Club, as rumors have stated.

There are details about every known audio and video from this tour.  Several of the police departments recorded portions of the show to use for training purposes.

What I really loved about the book is the rare photos and the details on how to tell the concerts apart.  Interestingly a keyboard was set up for John to play "I'm Down" however, the closing song was only played on guitar.

No stone was left unturned in this book, but I would have enjoyed reading a few stories form fans that were at these concerts and more personal things about the concerts.

This is the ONLY book written about the 1966 tours in Germany, and is a must have for hard core fans.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you Sara - I published a German 50 years edition this year - with even more facts and unknown photos and several corrections on things I did not know when I wrote the English version. I interviewed the guy at the mixing desc, a German tour executive, found a bit more footage to describe and heard an unbootlegged concert recording etc etc. There will be no new English version and the first printing of the English version is long out of print. I love this tour - even they played unrehearsed. I think the best show they played in 1966 was there last one.