The Bea­tles

Winnipeg Free Press - Section G - - BOOKS -

The BBC Archives, 1962-1970 By Kevin Howlett HarperDe­sign, 336 pages, $68 BRI­TISH au­thor and Bea­tles ex­pert Kevin Howlett has ex­haus­tively re­searched the Fab Four’s re­la­tion­ship with BBC Ra­dio and Tele­vi­sion, ex­plor­ing in deep de­tail the chronol­ogy of the Bea­tles and the Beeb, from their first au­di­tion in 1962 (they passed, earn­ing a spot on the Teenagers Turn pro­gram) to a fi­nal BBC in­ter­view with John Len­non and Yoko Ono in 1970 (shortly af­ter their visit with Cana­dian PM Pierre Trudeau). The dense vol­ume is packed with rare pho­tos, cor­re­spon­dence and in­ter­view tran­scripts, and in­cludes a full run­down of the 88 songs per­formed on BBC Ra­dio by the group’s mem­bers be­tween 1962 and 1965 (in all, there were 275 per­for­mances recorded). The book is pack­aged in an al­bum-like box and in­cludes some ex­tras that will thrill Bea­tles fans, in­clud­ing a rare photo of the four­some at the BBC, and a copy of the first “Ap­pli­ca­tion for an Au­di­tion by Va­ri­ety Depart­ment” sub­mit­ted by man­ager Brian Ep­stein Jan­uary 1962. dis­play of ob­scene wealth by the world’s one per cent.” The dizzy­ing ex­cess in­cludes the world’s first con­do­minium apart­ment tower con­structed right in the cen­tre of Vic­to­ria Falls, a nu­clear-pow­ered jacuzzi, and a ski lodge that it­self schusses down moun­tains on sturdy metal run­ners, “up­root­ing ev­ery tree and boul­der in its path.” Lav­ishly il­lus­trated with McCall’s inim­itable paint­ings, this is sur­pris­ing pointed satire, con­sid­er­ing Let­ter­man him­self must surely qual­ify as a mem­ber of the one-per­center de­mo­graphic.

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