January 17, 2013

2012 TOP TEN: 3 & 2

Spy Vibe just had a birthday- and I'm giving away the presents! Stay tuned for details about how to enter for vintage prizes. I had a chance to explore some really fun articles and new discoveries this year. As a New Year's special, I'm posting Spy Vibe's Top Ten list of favorite topics from 2012. So far we've celebrated Graphic Novelist Richard Sala, Jon Gilbert's Ian Fleming: The Bibliography, Playboy Bunny Deana, designer Dieter Rams, Danger Diabolik, British Design at the V&A, and our collector's series, For Your Shelf Only. Scroll down to see these posts. Coming up: the top three items from 2012.

Spy Vibe's 2012 Top Ten #3 and #2: Two major anniversaries just about tied for #3 and #2 positions in our top-ten list of topics from last year. Coming in at #3 was the 50th anniversary of The Beatles first record and at #2, the 50th anniversary of the first James Bond film. Amazingly, these events happened on the same day! In addition to our original coverage below, the last six months of 2012 were literally filled with major events and releases. For the fans who have followed The Beatles and James Bond through the years, it's been a thrilling period of celebration. I won't list everything here, but some of the highlights for me have been the special theatrical screenings of classic 007 movies (great to see again on the big screen!), a special listening party to hear the new Beatles vinyl records on elite Hi-Fi systems, New albums from McCartney and Starr, exhibits and auctions of historic artifacts, Blu-ray releases of Beatles and James Bond films, and the many 007-related books that were released (both non-fiction and new editions of Ian Fleming's novels). It was like having handfuls of every candy in the store offered to us each week for months and months. Were we saturated with Bond and Beatles last year? I'm not showing any signs of waning interest. Let the celebrations continue! Spy Vibers, did you go to any special events? What were your favorite parts of these anniversaries?

Originally posted on October 5th, 2012: If there is a cultural axis to the earth, then it certainly shifted on October 5th, 1962. With our 50 years of reference, it's hard to overstate the impact that both James Bond and The Beatles had on history. Amazingly, the first 007 movie and the first Beatles record came out on the same day. What followed was the spy boom with its international jet-setting values, a complete re-invention of popular music, the galvanizing of the youth, and a British cultural invasion that continues to reverberate in every Mini Cooper, well-dressed action hero, and new concept album. Each has spawned generations of incarnations, and each continues current output that expands their fan-bases. The iconography of Bond and The Beatles represents so many chapters in the changing climate of the 1960s, yet these monumental creations arrived in such simple packages.

The Beatles first single, Love Me Do/P.S. I Love You, released on October 5th, 1963 by Parlophone. A 50th anniversary vinyl reissue was planned, but the album version (without Ringo on drums) was accidentally used. In a flurry of news this week, EMI has recalled all of the records with plans to scrap them. No announcement has yet been made if they will re-cut a new batch with the correct recording. A few records may have found their way to collectors, who now have a modern rarity. The complete Beatles catalog (stereo remasters) will be released on vinyl in November. The Mono remasters will follow on vinyl in 2013. Yellow Submarine and Magical Mystery Tour have both been remastered to Blu-ray and had recent Theatrical releases. For Spy Vibers with deep pockets, Southeby's is auctioning original Sgt Pepper art by Peter Blake. Beatles insider, Bill Harry, has written a book about the recording of the first record called Love Me Do, which is free for Kindle until October 9th (John's birthday). Hunter Davies has just edited a unique book that collects the letters of John Lennon. See our checklist of new Beatles books, recordings, and films here.

The UK advanced poster for the first James Bond film, Dr. No, released on October 5th, 1962. A 50th anniversary box set of all of the Bond movies has been released on DVD and Blu-ray. Some single movie titles, previously unavailable on Blu-ray, are now available at Target stores and will likely become widely available soon. A new Bond feature documentary called Everything or Nothing has just premiered. The literary Bond, which has a 60th anniversary next year, has just been released in various new editions in the UK and US.  Ian Fleming: The Bibliography by Jon Gilbert will be published at the end of this month. Many Bond movie-related books are being released in the wake of the 50th anniversary. For Spy Vibers with deep pockets, Christie's is auctioning original movie props. 

Celebrate this special anniversary with the first public experiences with The Beatles and James Bond below. Try to imagine what it was like to be in the world of 1962, getting this first taste of new artistic creation. It was fresh, exciting! But would they be one-hit wonders? You put the needle on the record... The lights went down in the theater...


Ursula Andress image above from DVDbeaver.

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