The creative force of The Beatles community continues with some exciting new projects and special releases. Here are a few of the major works on our radar to help fans keep track. More Beatles news on our page here. Beatles images by Richard Avedon.
George Harrison: Director Martin Scorsese will release a documentary film next fall about George Harrison called Living in the Material World. Scheduled to be published at the same time, Olivia Harrison is working with Abrams on a companion book that will include George's own personal archives of never-before-seen photographs, diaries, and memorabilia. The book will chronicle his life, and his career from The Beatles to solo years and the Traveling Willburys. Press release here. The all-star tribute Concert For George was recently released on Blu-ray. You can see a clip of Paul McCartney and Eric Clapton from the concert on Spy Vibe here.
John Lennon: The first collection of personal letters and cards written by John Lennon will be published next fall by Little, Brown and Company. More info at Reuters. In movie news, Lennon's collaboration with Richard Lester on the anti-war film, How I won the War (1967), has been remastered and is available on-demand. The highlight of the release is a limited-edition book filled with never-before-seen photographs and contact sheets that document the making of the film. More about Lennon, Lester, and surrealism in the 1960s on Spy Vibe here. The excellent documentary, Lennon NYC, is now available on Blu-ray. For readers interested in studying John Lennon through the lens of Jungian archetypes, I recommend viewing the recent films, Nowhere Boy, Lennon Naked, and Lennon NYC as an illustration of the Journey.
Paul McCartney: There is a wonderful series of deluxe editions from Paul McCartney's catalog being produced. Following the release of Band on the Run last fall, the next albums to get the archival treatment are two projects that Paul made alone in his home studio in times of great transition. McCartney (1970) was recorded during the end of The Beatles and included an interview, enclosed in the record sleeve, that announced the break-up of the band to the world. Highly recommended! The second album is McCartney II (1980), a post-Wings experiment with early electronic beats. Although the album doesn't reach the heights of Liverpool Sound Collage (2000) or McCartney's electronic duets with producer Youth under the Firemen moniker (1993 to 2008), McCartney II remains an interesting document of musical ideas from the era. Both will be released on June 14th, 2011, in CD, deluxe CD/Book, and vinyl editions. More info here. The excellent limited-edition book, Paul McCartney Paintings, is now available in paperback through the Fest for Beatles here. Paul also appears to be compiling a new CD of Beatles/Wings covers. His son, James, recently joined The Cure to record a piece for the project.
Linda McCartney: Paul's family recently launched an official (and beautiful!) website dedicated to Linda McCartney in advance of the new Taschen book, Linda McCartney: Life in Photographs. The book will span her career as a photographer, from iconic 1960s rock images to photojournalism and fine art projects. It will be available in trade, collectible, and art editions. The rarest printings will include limited-edition photographs signed and numbered by Paul McCartney. Above image by Linda McCartney.
Yoko Ono: Spy Vibe creator, Jason Whiton's remix and experimental film tribute to Yoko Ono screens next at the New Media Film Festival in Hollywood on May 21st, 2011. Above image and current interview with Yoko at Spinner here. News about Yoko's exhibits, music, and charity efforts on her official website here.
The Beatles: Readers looking for limited-edition art books should explore the many projects created by Genesis Publications. A recent Beatles release, A Day in the Life, is a photographer's chronicle of the day in February, 1963 that the band hit #1 (Please Please Me/NME charts). According to Barry Miles' Beatles Diary, the band played a gig at the Cavern, saw their original drummer, Pete Best, for the last time, and drove to London with excitement about their chart success. This collection of photographs should bring this historic day to life. Here in the States, Cirque Du Soleil continues its fabulous run of The Beatles show, LOVE, in Las Vegas. A new iTunes APP is available that offers fans show content, music and videos. Finally, Beatles scholar Bruce Spizer will publish his new illustrated history of the Beatles recordings on Parlophone this summer.