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Tuesday, 23 October 2012

2012 10 10 - BBCR2 Beatleland

From the moment their plane lands at John Lennon Airport, 
or their train pulls into Lime Street station, visitors to Liverpool 
are reminded of the city's most famous sons at almost every turn.
Every day, tourists beat a path to Lennon and McCartney's 
childhood homes, restored to their 1950s glory by the National 
Trust. From Albert Dock to Mathew Street, Beatle memorials 
are ever present: Penny Lane and Strawberry Field, clubs like 
The Jacaranda, The Casbah and The Cavern where the group
 learned its trade, The Grapes and Ye Cracke, where the young 
Beatles would sit over a pint of cider and Gambier Terrace 
where John Lennon shared a flat with fellow art student Stu Sutcliffe. 
The Beatles connection is worth millions of pounds a year to 
the local economy.
In a programme filled with atmospheric location recordings, 
music and archive, Craig Charles visits Menlove Avenue, 
where Lennon's Aunt Mimi ruled the roost and the young John 
practised his guitar in the porch, and Forthlin Road where John and 
Paul composed so many of their most famous songs in the McCartney's
 front room. He'll sit in 'the shelter in the middle of the roundabout' 
at Penny Lane and head for the Cavern with fans like Geoff Davies 
who saw the Beatles perform there more than seventy times. We'll hear 
the Kop singing She Loves You in 1963, listen to acetates of the 
earliest recordings made by the Quarrymen in a local DIY recording studio, 
discover how Eleanor Rigby really did exist and find out about Tommy 
Handley and Albert Stubbins, the Scouse legends Lennon picked to grace
the cover of Sgt.Pepper.
The Beatles' rise coincided with Bill Shankley's Liverpool football team 
and a vibrant music and comedy scene in the city. And after the first,
 world-conquering flush of Beatlemania, the group began to look inward.
 John Lennon described In My Life as his first 'major' piece of songwriting. 
In its original form, the lyrics followed the route taken by a bus from his 
childhood home at Menlove Avenue to the centre of town: Penny Lane, 
the Abbey Cinema and Calderstone Park are among the locations listed.
Fifty years ago Liverpool gave the world the biggest musical phenomenon 
of all time. What was in the Mersey air that enabled John, Paul, George 
and Ringo to conquer the world ? How did the city shape The Beatles 
and how does their enduring success continue to impact upon their 
home town ?

1 comment:

  1. What a great special! I think there's some unbooted BBC chat from a "Saturday Club" in there as well! Thanks Studio2!