It was 50 years ago today…

Today is a very exciting day for all Beatlemaniacs who reside in Adelaide – it was 50 years ago today, when The Beatles came to Adelaide (excuse lame Sgt. Pepper pun)! I’ve been in an unusually good mood all day, but sadly, my poor friends (whom I’ve no doubtedly overloaded with squeals of, “If only I were alive 50 years ago,” and, “John was here, 50 years ago,”, etc., etc.,) are not sharing the love. But anyway (their loss), I thought I’d do a special 50th anniversary post, jam-packed with YouTube clips, photos, fun facts and more; enjoy!

As most people know, Adelaide nearly wasn’t on The Beatles’ Australian agenda. A verbal deal had been struck up between Ken Brodziak (an Australian tour promoter) and Brian Epstein in 1963, some time before ‘Please Please Me’ rocketed to Number One in Britain. The promoter – unsuspecting of The Fab Four’s future fame – had booked the four for concerts in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane. Adelaide had been left off the list.

A few weeks later, ‘Please Please Me’ ruled the charts in Britain, and John, Paul, George and Ringo performed on Sunday Night At The London Palladium, to hordes of screaming girls; Beatlemania was born! Meanwhile in Australia, Ken Brodziak was unsure whether his deal with Epstein would be fulfilled – to his luck, it was, and The Beatles were scheduled to perform in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane in June 1964. But something was missing – The Fab Four would not be coming to Adelaide…

A little later, Bob Francis (a relatively-famous South Australian DJ on 5AD) heard that The Beatles were touring Australia, but skipping Adelaide. He was not happy, and set his mind on bringing The Beatles to the Festival State. He set up a petition, which gathered thousands of signatures, and after much lobbying from him and other Adelaide fans, John, Paul, George and Ringo were set to perform four concerts here, over the 12th and 13th of June. Despite the fact that Ringo was hospitalised with tonsillitis and pharyngitis, thus unable to come to Australia before the others made their way up to Melbourne, Adelaide still managed to make Fab Four history, by giving them the largest reception they would ever receive, of somewhere between 300,000 and 350,000 people (over half the population at the time)! And for that, us Adelaide-ean Beatlemaniacs are very grateful.

YouTube Clips

 

 

This is a clip of bits and pieces of footage from ’64, released this year especially for the anniversary by EMI Australia.

 

 

This one’s of The Beatles’ Adelaide press conference – I haven’t watched the whole thing (shame on you, so-called ‘hardcore Beatlemaniac’!), but I’ve seen some bits; John has some really funny jokes, in it!

 

 

And well, here it is – the strangely-prophetic John Lennon quote from the Adelaide press conference that featured upon the end of When The Beatles Drove Us Wild, that made me cry. As I said last post, what a tragic irony. Rest in peace, John – love you to bits!

 

 

And this one’s a little lighter than the last – fragments of John, Paul, George and Jimmie’s Adelaide gig! I can just imagine being in the audience, that day – the atmosphere just seemed so electric, even from a YouTube clip!

 

Photos

The Waving Beatles

Not in Adelaide (Ringo’s in it) but anyway – I love the photo (for no apparent reason), so who cares?!

Oz Beatles Crowd

Here’s photographic proof of why Adelaide is so cool…

the beatles in adelaide three

Performing live…

the beatles in adelaide four

Front page of The News (Adelaide’s former evening newspaper) on B-Day.

the beatles in adelaide five

Too-cool-for-words people greeting an incredibly-cool city…

 

Fun Facts

Did you know…

  • Australian politician Bob Katter was among a group of Beatle-haters who pelted eggs at The Beatles in Brisbane.
  • Ian ‘Molly’ Meldrum was kicked out of The Beatles’ Melbourne concert for being ‘too hysterical’.
  • Jimmie Nicol – Ringo’s replacement – says that ‘being in The Beatles was the worst thing that happened to him’, and now lives as a recluse in London.
  • The Beatles almost cancelled their trip to Australia – after Ringo fell ill (the day before The Beatles embarked on their 1964 world tour) a loyal George refused to play with a replacement, though was eventually convinced (how sweet!).

 

This time tomorrow, I will be enjoying a Beatles tribute – put on by tribute band The Beatle Boys – recreating their Australian tour; it should be loads of fun, and I will report on Saturday! But for now, I’ll pause the White Album (but ‘Julia’ is so beautiful – and sad, too) and enjoy the special hour of Beatle-y fun that local radio station Cruise 1323 AM will be putting on in half an hour. But anyway, enjoy this special ‘birthday’ (pun on song playing off the White Album currently – see if you can guess what it is!) in Beatles history, and good day sunshine!

 

 

Beatle-y News

 

image

A picture of some really-cool rare Beatle collectables that my godparents gave me yesterday (thanks!), sitting on our record player.

 

As most Beatlemaniacs are aware, 2014 is a huge year in the Beatles calendar. Americans have been getting all hyped over their 50-years-since-The-Beatles-invaded-America celebrations, with festivities ranging from a beautiful photo-book called The Beatles: Six Days That Changed The World (I will do a review on it some point) to the now-infamous Grammy special screened on Foxtel back in February (I, ashamedly, have not seen this yet – our household does not have Foxtel, so my lovely godparents recorded it for us, but my stupid BluRay player repeatedly rejects the disc that they put it on). However, those over in the US of A are not the only people celebrating at the moment; here in The Great Southern Land/Terra Australis/Down Under/Australia, we’ve been having a Beatlemania revival, too (yay – for once, the rest of the country is acting like an extremely-understated version of moi!). Since last September, there has been a ‘Beatles In Australia’ exhibition doing the Sydney and Melbourne rounds. I was in Sydney for a weekend back in December, and Mum wanted to see an exhibition at the Powerhouse; to my delight, I discovered that the above exhibition was also being held there, so I’ve already seen it. I am, however, flying up to Melbourne very soon especially to re-view the exhibit, as a three-month-early birthday present – talk about being a Beatlemaniac! If it’s anything like it was in Sydney, there will be everything from original posters that a screaming fan proudly held up at The Fab Four’s Sydney Airport arrival, to John’s original suit from the tour! There was also an extremely large portion of Beatles merchandise for sale in the Powerhouse gift shop at the time – hopefully the Arts Centre have a shop, too! Anyway, if you turn out to be in Melbourne before the 1st of July, check it out – I, for one, really enjoyed it in Sydney (and hope to do so in Victoria, too).

As for things going on back home in South Australia…The two major newspapers here (The Advertiser and The Sunday Mail) have been taking advantage of the 50th anniversary of John, Paul, George and Jimmie Nicol’s (who was the replacement drummer – poor Ringo was stuck in London with tonsillitis) visit to Adelaide – I, in turn, have been fattening my Beatles scrapbook with their twenty-million articles (which I am not complaining about)! Here in Adelaide, we made Beatles history by giving the boys their biggest reception ever – surprising, really, considering how small we are, but (as with before) I’m not complaining; all the former Beatles (except Ringo, of course) have commented on their Adelaide visit, and this makes me very proud to be South Australian. But anyway, check out the Sunday Mail today, and yesterday’s Advertiser (if you still have it) – yesterday, there was a giant four-page spread in the SA Weekend, plus an article on a security guard who got their signatures. Today, in the Mail, there was an article of a woman who met John and Paul in ’64, and got Paul’s signature in 1975 (what a lucky-duck).

As for the TV – about a week ago, there was a half-hour special called Yesterday: The Beatles In Adelaide (thus, I assume, only screened here) on Channel 7, which was based around interviews with DJs/fans who were present, and a lot of archival footage (which was really interesting to look at). Despite the fact the documentary was ten years old, it was really good and I really enjoyed it. However, there’s another television special coming up on Tuesday, 10th of June (a new one!) on ABC1, called When The Beatles Drove Us Wild – apparently, this one is something very special, and unlike the former, it goes for a full  hour, so tune in!

As for other Beatle-y news – most Beatlemaniacs now know that A Hard Day’s Night is finally being re-released! This is good news for us Australians, ’cause it’s been out-of-print here since 2005! I’ve already pre-ordered my BluRay, and you can do the same with the link below (we are the same region as the UK, so the disc is watch-able here):

http://http://www.amazon.co.uk/Hard-Days-Night-Anniversary-Restoration/dp/B00KATQSA2/ref=sr_1_1?s=dvd&ie=UTF8&qid=1402183042&sr=1-1&keywords=a+hard+day%27s+night+50th+anniversary+restoration

And while you’re at it, take a look at the brand-new trailer made especially for AHDN’s re-release (if you’re lucky enough to be reading this in the US, you’ll get to see it at your local cinema):

 

 

So anyway, have a fab long weekend (I’ve listened to Abbey Road, read my new Beatles books/magazine pictured at the top of the post and posted on here), and enjoy the sunny day that has somehow found itself in the middle of Adelaide’s – to quote George Harrison – “long, cold, lonely Winter” (and trust me  – Adelaide Winters are freezing). Good day sunshine, for now!