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Posts Tagged ‘Brian Epstein’

Died On This Date (August 21, 2013) Sid Bernstein / Legendary Concert Promoter; Brought The British Invasion To America

Posted by themusicsover on August 21, 2013

Sid Bernstein
August 12, 1918 – August 21, 2013

sid-bernsteinSid Bernstein was a concert promoter who was largely responsible for the onset of the British Invasion by setting up the first US concerts by England’s biggest rock bands at the time.  In 1964, Bernstein felt the excitement building for the Beatles so he contacted their manager Brian Epstein, and convinced him to let him promote two shows at Carnegie Hall after their first appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show. The demand for tickets was so huge, that he arranged their legendary Shea Stadium concert the following year.  By doing so, he became the first promoter to ever set up a rock concert in a sports stadium.  Bernstein went on to organize the first five Rolling Stones shows in America.  He also brought fellow British Invasion groups, Herman’s Hermits, the Moody Blues, and the Kinks over for their first US shows.   The list of others Bernstein organized early major early concerts for include Judy Garland, Tony Bennett, Ray CharlesFrank Sinatra, and James Brown who once credited Bernstein for being the only significant promoter to work with Black acts during the ’60s.  Sid Bernstein was 95 when he passed away on August 21, 2013.


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Died On This Date (January 5, 1976) Mal Evans / Beatles Road Manager And More

Posted by themusicsover on January 5, 2012

Mal Evans
May 27, 1935 – January 5, 1976

malMal Evans worked as the Beatles’ road manager for many years and also appeared in minor roles on several of their records.  He also discovered and produced Badfinger.  Evans was working as a bouncer at the Cavern Club in Liverpool when, in 1963, Beatles’ manager, Brian Epstein, hired him to work with Neil Aspinall as the Beatles’ assistant road manager. Evans’ duties ranged from bodyguard to errand-runner for the band.  During the Beatles’ later years, Evans helped out in the studio.  He contributed an occasional lyric or two and even played on several records.  It was Evans who was manning the alarm clock during the key moment of “A Day in the Life.”  In 1968, Evans brought Badfinger to Apple Records and even though he almost no technical experience in the studio, produced several of Badfinger’s songs, including their hit, “No Matter What.”  Evans moved to Los Angeles during the early ’70s after he and his wife separated.  In December of 1976, his wife asked for a divorce and Evans reportedly fell into a noticeable depression.  On January 5, 1976, a friend went to Evans’ apartment to check on him only to find him in an agitated and confused state and in possession of an air rifle.  Police were called and demanded Evans put down what they thought was a regular rifle, but he refused.  Mal Evans, age 40, was shot and killed by the officers who felt threatened by his actions.   The shooting was ruled justifiable.

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Died On This Date (September 20, 2012) Robert Whitaker / British Photographer Who Took Beatles “Butcher” Image

Posted by themusicsover on September 20, 2011

Robert Whitaker
1939 – September 20, 2011

Robert Whitaker was a celebrated British photographer whose shots of the Beatles are some of the most iconic images in pop music history.  Whitaker’s career in photography can be traced back to the late ’50s when he was attending college  in Melbourne, Australia.  It was while freelancing in 1964 that he had a chance meeting with Beatles manager, Brian Epstein while the band was in the midst of an Australian tour.  That lead to numerous photo sessions with the band over the next few years, including one on March 25, 1966 where Whitaker captured the infamous image that shows John Lennon, George Harrison, Ringo Starr, and Paul McCartney wearing white lab coats and covered with baby doll parts, raw meat, and false teeth.  The photo was selected for the band’s Yesterday and Today cover as seen below, but Capitol records quickly recalled it, but only after several thousand got it.  The cover was changed making original copies of the “Butcher” cover extremely valuable to this day.  Away from the Beatles, Whitaker photographed the likes of Gerry & The Pacemakers, the Seekers, Mick Jagger, and Cream who used his photos of band members within the collage of their Disraeli Gears album cover.  Robert Whitaker continued to work in photography throughout the rest of his life, at times as a photojournalist for TIME and Life magazines.  He was 71 when he passed away on September 20, 2011.

Thanks to Harold Lepidus and Scott Miller for the assist.

What You Should Own

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Died On This Date (August 27, 1967) Brian Epstein / Managed The Beatles

Posted by themusicsover on August 27, 2010

Brian Epstein
September 19, 1934 – August 27, 1967

Although he also managed among others, Billy J. Kramer & the Dakotas and Gerry & the Pacemakers, Brian Epstein is best remembered as manager of the Beatles.  Many give him credit for the early success of the band.  Epstein first met the Beatles after the Cavern Club show on November 9, 1961.  By late January of 1962, Epstein was officially the band’s manager.  He helped facilitate many of the band’s earliest successes, but by January of 1966, the Beatles decided not to renew their contract which was due to expire the following year.  Epstein was notoriously addicted to drugs, and on August 27, 1967, he died of what was ruled and accidental overdose.  He was 32 years old.  In later years, Paul McCartney claimed that “if anyone was the fifth Beatle, it was Brian.”  And John Lennon once said that Eptstein’s death was the beginning of the end of the Beatles.

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Died On This Date (July 30, 2010) Richard “Scar” Lopez / Cannibal & The Headhunters

Posted by themusicsover on July 30, 2010

Richard “Scar” Lopez
May 18, 1945 – July 30, 2010

Richard Lopez at bottom

Richard “Scar” Lopez was an original member of Cannibal & The Headhunters, a group of singers from East Los Angeles who are considered to the first Mexican American group to have a national hit record with “Land Of A Thousand Dances.” The odds of making a record that would become one of the most famous songs in rock history have got to be at least a million to one. And even less likely, is to find yourself sharing the bill with the Beatles on their legendary 1965 US tour. Cannibal & the Headhunters did just that.  Lopez was just a high school kid living in East L.A. when he and brothers, Joe “Yo Yo” Jaramillo and Bobby “Rabbit” Jaramillo discovered they could create a special harmony when singing together. Within a short time, they teamed up with another local singer by the name of Frankie “Cannibal” Garcia to form the group that would soon be called Cannibal & The Headhunters, with Garcia as front man. After passing an audition for local record executive Eddie Davis, Cannibal & The Headhunters signed to his Rampart Records. They were soon in the studio recording “Land Of A Thousand Dances,” a song co-written by Fats Domino which was already a local hit by another artist. But it was their version of the song that shot to Billboard’s top 30 in April of 1965, and they were fast becoming the pride of East L.A. Before long, the group found themselves on the road sharing the stage with such superstars as the Temptations, Smokey Robinson, Ben E. King, Marvin Gaye, Wilson Pickett and Tom Jones. They were also invited to perform on “Hullabaloo,” a national rock ‘n roll variety show that counted Paul McCartney as one of its fans. The story goes that McCartney saw the boys on “Hullabaloo” and requested that manager Brian Epstein bring them on tour with the Beatles.   The group was soon flying around the country playing before tens of thousands of screaming Beatles fans at each stop. That tour included the Beatles’ legendary Shea Stadium and Hollywood Bowl shows. Legend has it that the Headhunters were exciting the crowds so much, that Epstein asked their manager to have them ease up a bit on stage. Back home after the tour, the guys started to make more records, but were never able to recapture the hysteria that sparked from that first huge hit. By 1967, Cannibal & The Headhunters had broken up and Lopez went on to become a landscaper, but the group occasionally reunited for special events.  Richard “Scar” Lopez was 65 when he died of lung cancer on July 30, 2010.

What You Should Own

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Cannibal and the Headhunters

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