Thursday, 27 April 2017

The new Penny Lane mix

The record label of the new single release showing a 2017 production year for "Penny Lane".
One of the questions we had after the re-release of the "Penny Lane"/"Strawberry Fields Forever" single, was why "Penny Lane" was remixed anew? According to the affixed label on the plastic wrap as well as on the record's label itself, this stereo remix of "Strawberry Fields Forever" is from 2015 (when the song was remixed for the soundtrack to its promotional film on the "1+" dvd and blu-ray release), whereas "Penny Lane" had a production year of 2017. So how come Giles Martin and Sam Okell redid this song and not just used the mix created for "1+" in 2015?

Mojo, June 2017 - available in the UK now.
Tuesday the latest issue of Mojo brought us the answer, In a review of the remix, it is revealed that the new "Penny Lane" mix was made possible thanks to the discovery of "a ‘lost’ 4-track of piano, harmonium and drum components, pre-bouncedown."

What is it with this song and losing stuff? First the original of the promotional film went missing from Apple's archives, and now someone had misplaced a tape of the basic take?

We have taken a look under the hood of this four track tape, courtesy of the description Mark Lewisohn provided in his book "Recording Sessions" in 1988. From the description in Mojo, it looks to us that the missing tape is the so-called "take 6" tape made on December 29, 1966 which has now been found again. This is no less than the backbone of "Penny Lane", the foundation the rest of the song relies on. The four tracks on the tape comprise:

Track 1: Paul's main piano piece, after five previous attempts of which only take 5 was complete, this track contains take 6, which was the final take.

Track 2: Another piano part, this time recorded through a Vox guitar amp for a different sound.

Track 3: So far, this had been Paul on his own. Here he comes back with a third piano piece, this time recorded at half speed to produce a higher pitch when played back at the correct speed. In addition, a tambourine is heard here and there, probably played by Ringo.

Track 4: An effect track. This track contains several elements throughout the length of the tape. A harmonium (Paul, we guess) providing two-tone high-pitch whistles, again fed through a Vox guitar amplifier, various strange percussion effects, one of them sounding at times like a machine gun, and extremely fast and sometimes drawn-out cymbal notes.
In the finished song you can hear this effect track here: The high pitched sounds from the harmonium is heard a little bit in the instrumental section and a lot more during the song's final ringing chord.  The machine gun-like percussion effects can be heard in the second chorus and at the conclusion of the third chorus (just after the lyric “meanwhile back”) and the fast drawn-out cymbals are most noticeable in the final seconds of the song.

At this time in the recording history of the song, the tape box label still calls it "Untitled" (but it was probably called "Penny Lane" in Paul's mind) and is instrumental only. The fact that Mark Lewisohn has described the tape means that it wasn't "lost" at the time when he was listening through all the Beatles tapes for his book. So between then and a little while back, it must have been misplaced, until it was rediscovered and put to use again by Giles Martin and Sam Okell for this 2017-mix.

The next day, December 30, 1966 these four tracks were all mixed down (bounced down, as the terminology was) to one track on a new four track tape, and called "take 7". From then on, these basic elements of the song were interlocked forever in all later remixes, until this one. "Take 7" was to become basis for the finished song. On one of the three vacant tracks, Paul and John now laid down the vocals, Paul singing lead, John backing him. These would later be replaced by better attempts, and the two remaining tracks would also be used in the new year.


In other news, one version of the title track of "Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" (Take 9 and speech) was played on BBC Radio's Chris Evans Radio Show (BBC Radio 2). British newspaper "The Guardian" provided us with an online version (available here). The track opens "the alternative Sgt Pepper album", which is LP 2 on the new double vinyl album.

Wednesday, 26 April 2017

Sgt Pepper @ 50: BBC celebrations

Offical Apple/Universal ad from the back page of "Record Collector", May edition.
To mark the 50th anniversary of the release of "Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band" by The Beatles on 1 June 1967, the BBC will celebrate with programmes across radio and TV. The range of programmes will explore the stories around the recording, release and subsequent life of this seminal album.

TV: Sgt Pepper's Musical Revolution

In early June, BBC Two presents Sgt. Pepper’s Musical Revolution, a new documentary from Huge Films directed by Francis Hanly, which will present Sgt. Pepper as you have never heard it before. The film will include extracts from material never before accessible outside of Abbey Road, studio chats between the band, out-takes, isolated instrumental and vocal tracks as well as passages from alternative takes of these world-famous songs.

The programme will be written and presented by one of Britain’s leading composers and most admired music broadcasters, Howard Goodall. He will be getting to grips with the album’s musical nuts and bolts.

Howard Goodall says: "Whatever music you like to listen to, if it was written after 1 June 1967 then more likely than not it will have been influenced, one way or another, by 'Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.' The record’s sheer ambition in its conception, composition, arrangements and ground-breaking recording techniques sets it apart from others of the time. It’s a landmark in 20th century music, and I’ve hugely enjoyed exploring the story behind the music."

Producer Martin R. Smith says: "This will be Sgt. Pepper as you’ve never heard it before. We’ve been granted unprecedented access to The Beatles’ own archive, photographs and multi-track studio tapes so we’ll be able to give an insider’s view into the making of this landmark album and, through Howard Goodall's insight, just why it was so revolutionary."

Jan Younghusband, Head of Music TV Commissioning, says: "So delighted to have Howard Goodall back on BBC Two with his brilliant insights into this outstanding album and how it all came about, and to celebrate this special moment in our music history."

Using visually-striking set dressing, projections and props the film will be conjuring up the multi-coloured, phantasmagorical world of Sgt. Pepper.  Following on chronologically from the 2016 documentary "Eight Days A Week - The Touring Years", Sgt Pepper’s Musical Revolution will show what happened when the studio took over from the stage and the screams.

To help assess the phenomenon of Sgt. Pepper the programme will find out out why the album came to be made. It will rediscover The Beatles at a pivotal moment in their career - both as a band and as four individuals, each with his own musical tastes, and ambitions. Having given up touring, they poured their energies into the studio: Sgt. Pepper, as Paul McCartney remarked, would be the performance.

BBC Radio 2

BBC Radio will also commemorate the anniversary across Radio 2, Radio 4 Extra and 6 Music.

BBC Radio 2 will present two documentary series - Sgt. Pepper Forever and Paul Merton On The Beatles.

Over two programmes, broadcast on 24 May and 31 May, Martin Freeman presents Sgt. Pepper Forever, which will reveal the revolutionary studio techniques used during the remarkable sessions dating from November 1966 to April 1967 and also examine the album’s huge impact on the history of music. They will feature ‘work-in-progress' versions of Sgt. Pepper tracks - and the songs on the double A-side single "Strawberry Fields Forever"/"Penny Lane", which were also recorded during the sessions - to illustrate the pioneering techniques used by The Beatles and George Martin.

This two-part documentary special, written and produced by Kevin Howlett of Howlett Media Productions, features interviews with Paul, George, Ringo and George Martin, and in a new interview composer Howard Goodall talks about, and illustrates on piano, the musical innovations of the album’s songs.

Having worked with the original four-track tapes to create a new stereo mix of Sgt. Pepper for its 50th anniversary, producer Giles Martin (son of Sir George Martin) describes the innovative recording techniques used at the time and how he approached making his new version.

There will also be interview material with the album cover’s co-designer Peter Blake, Beatles press officer Derek Taylor, Tony King (George Martin’s assistant in 1967), Mike Leander (the arranger of She’s Leaving Home), poet Adrian Mitchell, DJ John Peel and some of the producers and musicians who were influenced by the achievements of the album, including T Bone Burnett, Dave Grohl, Tom Petty, Jimmy Webb and Brian Wilson of The Beach Boys.

Martin Freeman says: "Sgt. Pepper is the most celebrated album by my favourite band. These documentaries will shed light on how The Beatles, with George Martin, created a piece of work that marked a watershed for what a long playing record could be. It’s my absolute pleasure to help tell you about it."

Paul Merton on The Beatles is a four-part series, produced by Radio 2’s Mark Hagen, which airs weekly from Monday 29 May.

The four programmes allow Paul to take a quirkily individual look at The Beatles’ career and legacy. In his world, The Beatles didn’t break up at the end of the 60s but instead went on creating albums and returning to the concert stage - and these four programmes all attempt to answer the 'what if' question.

In the opening show, remembering the covers that the band performed on their early albums, Paul looks at the way this trend continued in their individual solo careers, with John, Paul George and Ringo playing songs originally recorded by the Everly Brothers, Buddy Holly, Carl Perkins and more.

The second and third programmes imagine the band’s return to live performance with two idealised concerts including songs like Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds, What Goes On, Let It Be and Here Comes The Sun.

And in a special final show Paul Merton attempts to answer that most beloved Beatle fanatic question: what album would the band have made after Let It Be and Abbey Road if they hadn’t broken up?

Paul Merton says: "I’ve had great fun selecting tracks from John, Paul, George and Ringo’s solo careers to firstly create a magical live ‘Beatles’ concert, and secondly a new ‘Beatles’ double album. I am immensely looking forward to sharing my choices with the Radio 2 listeners."

BBC Radio 4 Extra

BBC Radio 4 Extra will delve deep in to the iconic album artwork to bring listeners a special day of programmes from 9am-10pm, inspired by the famous faces that are featured on the Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band album cover.

On Saturday 3 June, Samira Ahmed will introduce a diverse 13 hour mix of documentaries, dramas and comedies that all focus on this celebrated crowd, from Marlene Dietrich to Albert Einstein, Marlon Brando to Oscar Wilde. Programmes will include Alan Bennett reading Lewis Carroll’s Alice In Wonderland, Joan Bakewell interviewing Jonny Weissmuller for Start The Week in 1975, a drama about the classic comedy duo Laurel & Hardy starring John Sessions and Robbie Coltrane, and a look at the life of William Burroughs from the musician Laurie Anderson.

In between, brand new interviews will reveal more about the members of this Lonely Hearts Club Band, discover why these people were chosen for the cover, and explore what it was like to be there on the actual day this art work was created.

Produced by Luke Doran for the BBC, across one day let BBC Radio 4 Extra bring the Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band to life in this unique and imaginative celebration.

BBC Radio 6 Music

On BBC Radio 6 Music, Mark Radcliffe and Stuart Maconie will be broadcasting their show on Thursday 15 June (1pm-4pm) from Liverpool, celebrating the music of the city from Sgt. Pepper to the present day.

Ringo's Birthday plans

Ringo invites YOU!
Ringo's birthday has been an annual event, here are this year's plans.

Ringo Invites You To His Peace & Love Birthday Celebration
Ringo Starr will host one charitable fan at his 77th birthday brunch on July 7th in Los Angeles to benefit the David Lynch Foundation. By making a minimum $10 donation through Omaze, participants will be entered into a giveaway; the winner (and a guest) will be flown to the event, where they'll join Starr and his friends at brunch, say "peace and love" alongside VIP guests in front of Capitol Records and stay at a four-star hotel.


My Brave Face Best Buy single

The coloured vinyl single, not in the shops.
The "Best Buy" exclusive coloured 7" of My Brave Face / Flying To My Home (incidentally our favourite song from the "Flowers in the dirt" era) has been shipped and started to arrive. We expect a few to start appearing on ebay within short, but do not pay too much - these are still available online from Best Buy.

McCartney: USA tour etc

On stage in Japan.
Paul McCartney's own website was finally updated with 14 concerts in USA yesterday, these are between July 5 in Miami to October 1 in Detroit. There are no dates between July 23 (Omaha) and September 11 (Newark), so between those dates, concerts on other continents may be arranged.

Tickets are available from McCartney's own tour pages, where all registered members of are eligible for pre-sale tickets for these shows. Pre-sale details below:
Wednesday 26th April - 9am (ET / 2pm BST): Miami, Tampa, Duluth, Syracus
Wednesday 26th April - 9am (CT / 3pm BST): Bossier City, Wichita, Des Moines, Omaha, Tinley Park, Detroit
Monday 1st May - 9am (ET / 2pm BST): Newark, Madison Square Gardens, Brooklyn, Nassau

July 5: Miami, FL - AmericanAirlines Arena
July 10: Tampa, FL - Amalie Arena
July 13: Duluth, GA - Infinite Energy Arena
July 15: Bossier City, LA - CenturyLink Center
July 19: Wichita, KS - INTRUST Bank Arena
July 21: Des Moines, IA - Wells Fargo Arena
July 23: Omaha, NE - CenturyLink Center
July 25: Tinley Park, IL - Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre

September 11: Newark, NJ - Prudential Center
September 15: New York, NY - Madison Square Garden
September 19: Brooklyn, NY - Barclays Center
September 23: Syracuse, NY - Carrier Dome
September 26: Uniondale, NY - Nassau Coliseum
October 1: Detroit, MI - Little Caesars Arena

So far the official dates. From South America we have received this list of dates and venues, thus far not confirmed on McCartney's website:

October 12: Porto Alegre: Estádio Beira Rio, Brazil
October 15: São Paulo: Allianz Parque, Brazil
October 17: Belo Horizonte: Estádio Mineirão, Brazil
October 20: Salvador: Arena Fonte Nova, Brazil
October 24: Ciudad de Panamá
October 26: Estadio Atanasio Girardot en Medellín, Colombia

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

McCartney Budokan set list - U.S. dates expected soon

Waving the flags at the Budokan Hall
Here's the set list from Paul McCartney's concert at the Budokan Hall in Tokyo on April 25, the first concert of his in 2017:

01. A Hard Day’s Night
02. Jet
03. Drive My Car
04. Junior’s Farm
05. Let Me Roll It
06. I’ve Got a Feeling
07. My Valentine
08. 1985
09. Maybe I’m Amazed
10. We Can Work It Out
11. Every Night
12. In Spite of All the Danger
13. Love Me Do
14. BlackBird
15. Here Today
16. Queenie Eye
17. Lady Madonna
18. I Wanna Be Your Man
19. Magical Mystery Tour
20. Being for the Benefit of Mr. Kite!
21. Obla Di, Obla Da
22. Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band (Reprise)
23. Back In The U.S.S.R.
24. Let It Be
25. Live And Let Die
26. Hey Jude

27. Yesterday
28. Hi Hi Hi
29. Golden Slumbers
30. Carry That Weight
31. The End

We expected more from the Sgt Pepper album, but perhaps he is waiting for the anniversary album to appear. Another surprise is the non-inclusion of "Band On The Run", that hasn't happened before.. It is a shorter set list than usual, but McCartney played a shorter set last time he visited the Budokan Hall too, so perhaps those "missing" songs will reappear later on in the tour. Meanwhile, Paul has added a massive new run of U.S. dates to his One On One tour. An official announcement from Paul is expected today, but eager local promoters have already started to announce the concerts, like this one. Also rumoured for later in October: South America.

Budokan rehearsal:

1 - Jam
2 - Matchbox
3 - Honey Hush
4 - I've Got A Feeling
5 - Junior's Farm
6 - I Wanna Be Your Man
7 - Sgt Pepper's Lonely Heart Club Band (Reprise)
8 - Back In The USSR
9 - My Valentine
10 - Miss Ann
11 - Here There And Everywhere
12 - Every Night
13 - I've Just Seen A Face
14 - Being For The Benefit of Mr. Kite!
15 - Golden Slumbers/Carry That Weight/The End

Monday, 24 April 2017

My Record Store Day

My copy of Penny Lane/Strawberry Fields Forever
Inspired by this Beatlesblogger post, I thought I should give an account of my experiences of Saturday's Record Store Day.

I live in a small town just outside Oslo, the capital of Norway. It's a 15-20 minute drive. However, there's a good record store in my town (old & new, vinyl and CD's) who were participating with RSD, so I thought I'd just pop in there when they opened. This I did, I arrived just seconds before opening time, and only two more people were waiting for the store to open, neither were Beatles fans. I only knew about the McCartney/Costello cassette and the anniversary release of the "Penny Lane" /"Strawberry Fields Forever" single, but I only expected to find the latter, as I thought the cassette would be too rare to find in Norway.

Complete with doodle, I believe the cassette is an exact copy of McCartney's personal demo cassette from the 80's.
The store opened and lo and behold - they did have the single. Furthermore, they only had one copy. It was a bit expensive at 170 NOK (about 20 US dollars), but nevertheless, I was happy to find it and purchased it. It was shrink wrapped in plastic, which is something not normally done with singles in Norway, and the sleeve was printed on much harder paper than my 1967 original U.K. copy. Not quite as hard as an E.P. but harder than normal single sleeves. As I paid for the item, I chatted with the guy at the till, and enquired about the cassette. He told me that he had ordered it, but it hadn't arrived. I was surprised that he actually had managed to order it, this meant it could be ordered from Norway after all.

The label of the Penny Lane side of my copy of the single.

Back home, I opened Facebook and posted a photo of the single, and told everyone I had gotten hold of the only copy available in my town. I listened to "Penny Lane" just once on my record player, and was rather unimpressed with the pressing (a bit shrill) and the mix (rather mono-like, I noticed very little stereo separation). "Strawberry Fields Forever" I didn't need to listen to, as I expected it to be the same stereo mix as on the "1+" music video.

After a while, a Facebook friend from Oslo posted that there were plenty available of the Beatles single in two participating records stores there, "The Garden" and "Big Dipper Records". In the thread, I asked him about the McCartney cassette, but he was unaware of it and hadn't been looking for it. But a friend of his chimed in later in the same thread that he had seen the cassette, maybe five copies in "The Garden" and fifteen in "Big Dipper Records". Meanwhile, cassettes were popping up "all over ebay".

The back of my copy of the single

Having seen my post about the single, a mate called me from "The Garden" and told me they had eleven left of the Beatles single. It was even 20 NOK cheaper than the one copy I had bought in my local record store. I asked him about the McCartney cassette. He too was unaware of its existence, but looked around and located the two copies they had left. I asked him to get me one, and this he did!
We kept in touch when he went over to the other store, and there he sent me these two photos from "Big Dipper Records":

After having been open for 4-5 hours, "Big Dipper Records" still had 11 of the cassettes...

...and a huge stack of the Beatles single.

So it seemed there were more of these Beatles and related items in Oslo than anywhere else on the planet! How very strange. The single was supposedly pressed in only 7,000 copies and the cassette just 2,500. So how come so many of them ended up in Norway? Perhaps the so called "limited edition" items for RSD should all be individually numbered, so that we all could see if the numbers were correct?

Anyway, some guy over at Twitter was complaining about the situation and that people were buying them just to sell them at double price or more at ebay, which prompted this reply from Giles Martin:
If this means that the single will now be pressed up in a second printing for general release, may I suggest pressing it on coloured vinyl, so that those of us who went hunting on Record Store Day will have something exclusive after all?

By the way, the "strictly limited" 2014 Black Friday re-release of the "Long Tall Sally" EP is still available from the U.S. Beatles store, for only $20.

Friday, 21 April 2017

Sgt Pepper in Mojo

The June edition of Mojo will hit the newsstands in the U.K. on April 25.
MOJO 283 / June 2017:
MOJO celebrates the 50th Birthday of The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band – rebooted in 2017 with a thrilling new stereo mix. Paul McCartney tells us how they “vibed” it; Jon Savage on the songs and the significance; Nigel Hartnup relives THAT sleeve shoot; Giles Martin defends his Pepper for the new millennium; and more! Meanwhile MOJO’s covermount CD, Children Of Pepper, brings together mind-blowing tracks by psych inheritors.

Here's a short extract from the McCartney interview.

Thursday, 20 April 2017

RSD single uses remixed versions

Sticker confirms new mixes
It has now been confirmed that Saturday's Record Store Day release of "Penny Lane" / "Strawberry Fields Forever" on a 45 rpm single indeed contains new mixes of the songs. This version of "Strawberry Fields Forever" is the same stereo mix as used on the promotional video for the song on 2015's "1+" compilation, whereas "Penny Lane" is a newer mix, with a 2017 production date. This release will then mark the debut of this mix, prior to its inclusion on the DeLuxe Anniversary edition of "Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band". Meanwhile, dealers on ebay are accepting preorders of the upcoming single at very inflated prices.

Close-up of the sticker

Wednesday, 19 April 2017

Mister Kite reproduction poster

John Lennon with the circus poster, 1971. Inserted: The new reproduction.

The "Mister Kite" circus poster is reproduced for inclusion in the DeLuxe Anniversary edition of "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band". Here's John with the original, alongside the part of the repro poster that is visible in the pack shot of the anniversary release.

This poster has been reproduced several times, most famously by Peter Dean in 2012 but also by "The Propsmith" after he was unhappy with Dean's effort. So how about this new one? Do you think Yoko has allowed them to photograph the original to ensure the reproduction is as close to the real one as possible?
A version I bought in Hamburg in 2006 - printed with red ink.

Since the Lennon photo is black and white, how can we know that his poster was printed with black ink? A reader sent in this colour photo from 1967 of "The Fool" (Simon Posthuma and Marijke Koger) painting John's piano. In the upper right corner, the "Mister Kite" poster is just visible. It looks to me like it's printed using red ink, but it's difficult to be certain.

The poster is barely visible in the upper right corner of this 1967 colour photo.

Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Signed prints from Jean-Marie Perier

Uncropped photo from February 1967. Photo: Jean-Marie Perier
Just before Easter, Snap Galleries advertised a series of three Beatles photos taken by renowned French photographer Jean-Marie Perier in February 1967. In an accompanying interview, Perier talks about meeting The Beatles for the first time in Brian Epstein's office in 1963, and how he subsequently took the iconic "lighting cigarettes" photo. The Beatles met Perier several times, in London as well as in Paris, and in February 1967 he was invited to take their photo for the upcoming "Penny Lane" / "Strawberry Fields Forever" single release (see 2017 re-release info here). Perier had to set up a makeshift photographic studio in a room next to their recording studio inside EMI studios at Abbey Road, while the Beatles were in the midst of recording Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. It took a week before he was able to take photos of the four of them together - they always seemed to be a Beatle short!

Source: Snap Galleries
See more of Jean-Marie Perier's Beatles photos here.

Tuesday, 11 April 2017

Pepper preview for the press

Outside Abbey Road Studios yesterday. Photo: udiscovermusic
April 10, Giles Martin held a preview (or should that be prelisten?) of his new stereo mix of the "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" album in the best place possible for the occasion: No. 2 Studio at Abbey Road. Unfortunately, The Daily Beatle was not invited, but a hundred or so journalists from around the world were there.

Udiscovermusic sent their reporter, who came back with an article praising the mix, noting that "Sgt Pepper has always been hailed for its innovative studio techniques, but what you also get from the new mix is the sense of a band playing together. And not only that, but tapping into their early Hamburg club days and jamming hard, too".

Martin, who called working on the album "a voyage of discovery",  told the audience that he struggled with "A Day In The Life". "I’d mixed it three times, actually. It’s got to be loud, but it comes out of ‘Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band (Reprise)’. The difficulty was in getting the right feeling."

At a Q&A session, Martin was asked by Paul Sinclair whether "Carnival of Light was considered for bonus material in the boxed set, to which Martin replied: "Yes, it was. As was 'It’s Only A Northern Song', as well, actually. But it wasn’t really part of Pepper. It wasn’t part of the Sgt. Pepper recording. It’s a very different thing. I hope we can do something interesting with that at some point…but it wasn’t really part of the Sgt. Pepper album."

Read the full review from Jason Draper over at Udiscovermusic.

Paul Sinclair from Superdeluxeedition was there, too. Read his take on it here.

Rolling Stone previews the alternate Sgt Pepper album

Richard Williams was there, too


Thursday, 6 April 2017

Cry For A Shadow LP

Oh no, they cut out Pete again!
Here's another EU "loophole" release, a hybrid of Polydor/Decca tapes with the first EMI single thrown in. From Rockwell Music in the UK, this release is limited to just 250 copies on clear green vinyl. Wonder if they still have a market after Brexit?

Side One: 1 Cry For A Shadow (Lennon/Harrison)  •  2 Ain’t She Sweet - The ‘Tony Sheridan’ recordings, 22/23 June 1961, Hamburg Germany  •  3 Money (that’s what I want)  •  4 Till There Was You  •  5 To Know Her Is To Love Her  •  6 Take Good Care Of My Baby  •  7 Memphis, Tennessee

Side Two: 1 Sure To Fall (in love with you)  •  2 Crying, Waiting, Hoping  •  3 Love Of The Loved (Lennon/McCartney)  •  4 September In The Rain  •  5 Bésame Mucho - The Decca Auditions, 1st January 1962  •  6 P.S. I Love You (Lennon/McCartney)  •  7 Love Me Do (Lennon/McCartney) - A & B side of the original ‘Love Me Do’ single. Ringo Starr on drums.

Link: Rockwell Music

Penny Lane single for RSD

Single release for Record Store Day
As written in the press release of the anniversary edition of "Sgt Pepper" yesterday, there will be a single release of "Penny lane" / "Strawberry Fields Forever" for Record Store Day, April 22. And a webpage dedicated to the release was also up yesterday. The single will be limited to just 7000 copies, but there is nothing on the webpage which says if this is just the original single mix or if these are new mixes of the songs in question. From what we hear, Apple meant them to be new mixes.

Link: Record Store Day

Wednesday, 5 April 2017

Pepper Press release


 ‘Sgt. Pepper’ Presented with New Mixes in Stereo and 5.1 Surround Audio; Expanded with Previously Unreleased Session Recordings, Video Features & Special Packaging

Previously Unreleased 1992 Documentary Film, ‘The Making of Sgt. Pepper,’ Restored for Anniversary Edition’s Super Deluxe Boxed Set

London – April 5, 2017 – It was 50 years ago this June 1st when The Beatles’ John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr astonished and delighted the world, ushering in the Summer of Love with Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, a groundbreaking masterwork that became popular music’s most universally acclaimed album. To salute the occasion, The Beatles will release a suite of lavishly presented ‘Sgt. Pepper’ Anniversary Edition packages on May 26 (Apple Corps Ltd./Capitol/UMe). The album is newly mixed by Giles Martin and Sam Okell in stereo and 5.1 surround audio and expanded with early takes from the studio sessions, including no fewer than 34 previously unreleased recordings.

“It’s crazy to think that 50 years later we are looking back on this project with such fondness and a little bit of amazement at how four guys, a great producer and his engineers could make such a lasting piece of art,” says Paul McCartney in his newly-penned introduction for the ‘Sgt. Pepper’ Anniversary Edition.

“‘Sgt. Pepper’ seemed to capture the mood of that year, and it also allowed a lot of other people to kick off from there and to really go for it,” Ringo Starr recalls in the Anniversary Edition’s book.

For Record Store Day on April 22, Apple Corps Ltd./Capitol/UMe will release an exclusive, limited edition seven-inch vinyl single of The Beatles’ “Strawberry Fields Forever” and “Penny Lane,” among the first songs recorded during the ‘Sgt. Pepper’ sessions, which began in November 1966. Rather than being held for inclusion on the album, the two songs were released as a double A-sided single in February 1967. Amidst intense media speculation about the band’s next move, the single bridged what was then considered a long gap between the Revolver album, released in August 1966, and ‘Sgt. Pepper,’ which followed 10 months later.

This is the first time Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band has been remixed and presented with additional session recordings, and it is the first Beatles album to be remixed and expanded since the 2003 release of Let It Be… Naked. To create the new stereo and 5.1 surround audio mixes for ‘Sgt. Pepper,’ producer Giles Martin and mix engineer Sam Okell worked with an expert team of engineers and audio restoration specialists at Abbey Road Studios in London. All of the Anniversary Edition releases include Martin’s new stereo mix of the album, which was sourced directly from the original four-track session tapes and guided by the original, Beatles-preferred mono mix produced by his father, George Martin.

Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band Anniversary Edition releases include:

A CD featuring the new ‘Sgt. Pepper’ stereo mix, complete with the original U.K. album’s “Edit for LP End” run-out groove.

Deluxe:  Expanded 2CD and digital package features the new stereo album mix on the first CD and adds a second CD of 18 tracks, including previously unreleased complete takes of the album’s 13 songs, newly mixed in stereo and sequenced in the same order as the album. The second CD also includes a new stereo mix and a previously unreleased instrumental take of “Penny Lane” and the 2015 stereo mix and two previously unreleased complete takes of “Strawberry Fields Forever.”

Deluxe Vinyl:  Expanded 180-gram 2LP vinyl package features the new stereo album mix on the first LP and adds a second LP with previously unreleased complete takes of the album’s 13 songs, newly mixed in stereo and sequenced in the same order as the album.

Super Deluxe:  The comprehensive six-disc boxed set features:
CD 1:  New stereo album mix
CDs 2 & 3:
- 33 additional recordings from the studio sessions, most previously unreleased and mixed for the first time from the four-track session tapes, sequenced in chronological order of their recording dates
- A new stereo mix of “Penny Lane” and the 2015 stereo mix of “Strawberry Fields Forever”
CD 4:
- Direct transfers of the album’s original mono mix and the “Strawberry Fields Forever” and “Penny Lane” singles
- Capitol Records’ U.S. promotional mono single mix of “Penny Lane”
- Previously unreleased early mono mixes of “She’s Leaving Home,” “A Day In The Life,” and “Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds” (a mix thought to have been erased from a tape in 1967, but discovered during archive research for the anniversary edition)
Discs 5 & 6 (Blu-ray and DVD):
- New 5.1 surround audio mixes of the album and “Penny Lane” by Giles Martin and Sam Okell, plus their 2015 5.1 surround mix of “Strawberry Fields Forever”
- High resolution audio versions of the new stereo mixes of the album and “Penny Lane” and of the 2015 stereo mix of “Strawberry Fields Forever”
- Video features:  4K restored original promotional films for “Strawberry Fields Forever,” “Penny Lane,” and “A Day In The Life;” plus The Making of Sgt. Pepper, a restored, previously unreleased documentary film (broadcast in 1992), featuring insightful interviews with McCartney, Harrison, and Starr, and in-studio footage introduced by George Martin.

– “A splendid time is guaranteed for all” –

The album’s vibrant artwork, including its extravagant Pop Art cover which finds The Beatles surrounded by a crowd of heroes in a 3D collage, was created by Peter Blake and Jann Haworth in collaboration with the band. The original artwork is showcased across the suite of Anniversary Edition releases, including the album’s pull-out sheet of ‘Sgt. Pepper’ cutouts. Housed in a 12-inch by 12-inch box with lenticular artwork and two bonus posters, the six-disc Super Deluxe set is presented with a 144-page hardcover book. The book includes new introductions by Paul McCartney and Giles Martin, and chapters covering comprehensive song-by-song details and recording information, the design of the cover, the album’s musical innovations and its historical context by Beatles historian, author and radio producer Kevin Howlett; composer and musicologist Howard Goodall; music producer and writer Joe Boyd; and journalists Ed Vulliamy and Jeff Slate,  illustrated with rare photographs, reproductions of handwritten lyrics, Abbey Road Studios documentation, and original ‘Sgt. Pepper’ print ads. The Deluxe 2CD digipak is slipcased with a 50-page booklet abridged from the box set’s book, and the 2LP Deluxe Vinyl is presented in a faithful reproduction of the album’s original gatefold jacket.

– “We hope you will enjoy the show” –

Just as many ideas are sparked by chance, ‘Sgt. Pepper’ first sprang from a conversation between Paul and Beatles roadie Mal Evans on an airplane, when Mal’s request to pass the salt and pepper was misheard by Paul as “Sgt. Pepper.” The concept of who such a figure could be took root in Paul’s mind, blooming with the imagination of The Beatles as an Edwardian era military band -- “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.” The Beatles’ creative wellspring for ‘Sgt. Pepper’ also flowed from such myriad sources as The Beach Boys’ Pet Sounds album, a Victorian circus poster (“Being For The Benefit Of Mr. Kite!”), a TV commercial for breakfast cereal (“Good Morning Good Morning”), a picture drawn by John’s young son, Julian (“Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds”), a teen runaway reported in the news (“She’s Leaving Home’), and Hindu teachings (“Within You Without You”).

– “Lend me your ears and I'll sing you a song” –

Using the standard four-track tape recording equipment of the day, The Beatles collaborated with producer George Martin to achieve “the impossible,” as they dubbed it, to go as far out as they could with arrangements and new technology to realize their collective vision for Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. As George Martin described it, “We were into another kind of art form where you were putting something down on tape that could only be done on tape.” The Beatles clocked more than 400 hours in Abbey Road’s Studio 2 to record the album, wrapping sessions in April 1967.

– “I read the news today oh boy” –

Upon its release on June 1, 1967, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band initially spent 148 weeks in the British chart, including a total of 27 weeks at number one. During its first U.S. chart run, the album held the number one spot for 15 of the 88 weeks it appeared in the Top 200. ‘Sgt. Pepper’ won four GRAMMY Awards®, including Album of the Year, and it remains one of the most influential and bestselling albums of all time. In 2003, the U.S. Library of Congress selected ‘Sgt. Pepper’ for the National Recording Registry, recognizing the album as “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant.” ‘Sgt. Pepper’ tops Rolling Stone magazine’s definitive list of the “500 Greatest Albums of All Time.”

Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band Anniversary Edition

(‘Sgt. Pepper’ 2017 Stereo Mix)
1.  Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band
2.  With A Little Help From My Friends
3.  Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds
4.  Getting Better
5.  Fixing A Hole
6.  She's Leaving Home
7.  Being For The Benefit Of Mr. Kite!
8.  Within You Without You
9.  When I'm Sixty-Four
10. Lovely Rita
11. Good Morning Good Morning
12. Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band (Reprise)
13. A Day In The Life

Deluxe [2CD, digital]

CD 1:  ‘Sgt. Pepper’ 2017 Stereo Mix (same as single-disc CD tracklist, above)

CD 2:  Complete early takes from the sessions in the same sequence as the album, plus various versions of “Strawberry Fields Forever” and “Penny Lane”
1.  Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band [Take 9]
2.  With A Little Help From My Friends [Take 1 - False Start And Take 2 – Instrumental]
3.  Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds [Take 1]
4.  Getting Better [Take 1 - Instrumental And Speech At The End]
5.  Fixing A Hole [Speech And Take 3]
6.  She's Leaving Home [Take 1 – Instrumental]
7.  Being For The Benefit Of Mr. Kite! [Take 4]
8.  Within You Without You [Take 1 - Indian Instruments]
9.  When I'm Sixty-Four [Take 2]
10. Lovely Rita [Speech And Take 9]
11. Good Morning Good Morning [Take 8]
12. Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band (Reprise) [Take 8]
13. A Day In The Life [Take 1 With Hummed Last Chord]
14. Strawberry Fields Forever [Take 7]
15. Strawberry Fields Forever [Take 26]
16. Strawberry Fields Forever [Stereo Mix - 2015]
17. Penny Lane [Take 6 - Instrumental]
18. Penny Lane [Stereo Mix - 2017]

Deluxe Vinyl [180g 2LP]

LP 1:  ‘Sgt. Pepper’ 2017 Stereo Mix (same as single-disc CD tracklist, above)
1.  Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band 1.  Within You Without You
2.  With A Little Help From My Friends 2.  When I'm Sixty-Four
3.  Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds 3.  Lovely Rita
4.  Getting Better 4.  Good Morning Good Morning
5.  Fixing A Hole 5.  Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band
6.  She's Leaving Home 6.  A Day In The Life
7.  Being For The Benefit Of Mr. Kite!

LP 2:  Complete early takes from the sessions in the same sequence as the album
1.  Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band [Take 9 And Speech]
2.  With A Little Help From My Friends [Take 1 - False Start And Take 2 – Instrumental]
3.  Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds [Take 1]
4.  Getting Better [Take 1 - Instrumental And Speech At The End]
5.  Fixing A Hole [Speech And Take 3]
6.  She's Leaving Home [Take 1 – Instrumental]
7.  Being For The Benefit Of Mr. Kite! [Take 4]

1.  Within You Without You [Take 1 - Indian Instruments]
2.  When I'm Sixty-Four [Take 2]
3.  Lovely Rita [Speech And Take 9]
4.  Good Morning Good Morning [Take 8]
5.  Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band (Reprise) [Take 8]
6.  A Day In The Life [Take 1 With Hummed Last Chord]

Super Deluxe [4CD/DVD/Blu-ray boxed set]

CD 1:  ‘Sgt. Pepper’ 2017 Stereo Mix (same as single-disc CD tracklist, above)

CD 2:  Complete early takes from the sessions, sequenced in chronological order of their first recording dates
1.  Strawberry Fields Forever [Take 1]
2.  Strawberry Fields Forever [Take 4]
3.  Strawberry Fields Forever [Take 7]
4.  Strawberry Fields Forever [Take 26]
5.  Strawberry Fields Forever [Stereo Mix - 2015]
6.  When I'm Sixty-Four [Take 2]
7.  Penny Lane [Take 6 – Instrumental]
8.  Penny Lane [Vocal Overdubs And Speech]
9.  Penny Lane [Stereo Mix - 2017]
10. A Day In The Life [Take 1]
11. A Day In The Life [Take 2]
12. A Day In The Life [Orchestra Overdub]
13. A Day In The Life (Hummed Last Chord) [Takes 8, 9, 10 and 11]
14. A Day In The Life (The Last Chord)
15. Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band [Take 1 – Instrumental]
16. Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band [Take 9 And Speech]
17. Good Morning Good Morning [Take 1 - Instrumental, Breakdown]
18. Good Morning Good Morning [Take 8]

CD 3:  Complete early takes from the sessions, sequenced in chronological order of their first recording dates
1.  Fixing A Hole [Take 1]
2.  Fixing A Hole [Speech And Take 3]
3.  Being For The Benefit Of Mr. Kite! [Speech From Before Take 1; Take 4 And Speech At End]
4.  Being For The Benefit Of Mr. Kite! [Take 7]
5.  Lovely Rita [Speech And Take 9]
6.  Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds [Take 1 And Speech At The End]
7.  Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds [Speech, False Start And Take 5]
8.  Getting Better [Take 1 - Instrumental And Speech At The End]
9.  Getting Better [Take 12]
10. Within You Without You [Take 1 - Indian Instruments Only]
11. Within You Without You [George Coaching The Musicians]
12. She's Leaving Home [Take 1 – Instrumental]
13. She's Leaving Home [Take 6 – Instrumental]
14. With A Little Help From My Friends [Take 1 - False Start And Take 2 – Instrumental]
15. Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band (Reprise) [Speech And Take 8]

CD 4:  ‘Sgt. Pepper’ and bonus tracks in Mono
(Tracks 1-13:  2017 Direct Transfer of ‘Sgt. Pepper’ Original Mono Mix)
14. Strawberry Fields Forever [Original Mono Mix]
15. Penny Lane [Original Mono Mix]
16. A Day In The Life [Unreleased First Mono Mix]
17. Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds [Unreleased Mono Mix - No. 11]
18. She's Leaving Home [Unreleased First Mono Mix]
19. Penny Lane [Capitol Records U.S. Promo Single - Mono Mix]

DISCS 5 & 6 (Blu-ray & DVD)
Audio Features (both discs):
- New 5.1 Surround Audio mixes of ‘Sgt. Pepper’ album and “Penny Lane,” plus 2015 5.1 Surround mix of “Strawberry Fields Forever” (Blu-ray: DTS HD Master Audio 5.1, Dolby True HD 5.1 / DVD: DTS Dolby Digital 5.1)
- High Resolution Audio versions of 2017 ‘Sgt. Pepper’ stereo mix and 2017 “Penny Lane” stereo mix, plus 2015 “Strawberry Fields Forever” hi res stereo mix (Blu-ray: LPCM Stereo 96KHz/24bit / DVD: LPCM Stereo)
Video Features (both discs):
- The Making of Sgt. Pepper [restored 1992 documentary film, previously unreleased]
- Promotional Films:  “A Day In The Life;” “Strawberry Fields Forever;” “Penny Lane” [4K restored]

Trailer for Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band Anniversary Edition: