Tuesday, 9 April 2019

It's Only a Harrisong

"Wait. You did what with my song?"

Yes. He'd been awfully poor up to then, actually ... some of the stuff he'd written was dead boring. The impression sometimes given is that we put him down ... I don't think we ever did that, but possibly we didn't encourage him enough.

George Martin 1971

Okay, let's not get into the "I am unaware of what I did, even though I just did it" denial spree George Martin wistfully tells the interviewer at Melody Maker in 1971. We'll ignore that. What we want to address firstly, is why would one include songs on albums they considered "dead boring" when the goal of those albums is to SELL SELL $ELL units. And you definitely don't open up albums with dead boring songs, so something like Taxman should be put ... last. Not first on an album marketed for huge sales and capital gain. 

MM: Was he given an allocation of two songs per album?

MARTIN: Not really. He'd write, with difficulty, and he'd bring them and we'd say, "Okay we'll put them on the album then." But it was that way ... we wouldn't say, "What've you got then, George?" We'd say, "Oh, you've got some more have you?" I must say that looking back it was a bit hard on him, but it was natural because the others were so talented. It was always slightly condescending, and it was a similar thing with Ringo. He'd come along with "Octopus's Garden" or something ... he always wanted to do something, because he was left out in the cold. It wasn't until recently that George has really come through, I suppose that "Something" was his breakthrough.

It's a lovely notion, the blossoming composer, nurtured by care and discipline, guided by other professionals to one day shine on his own. Beautifully scripted. It's the stuff of imagination. 

The reason I'm writing this blog, entitled "It's Only a Harrisong" is because I've been saying what will follow for over ten years. And I get the feeling that one day, people will actually catch on to what's being said, and someone's going to say "I said that years ago."

No. You didn't. I've been saying it for almost 15 years, waiting for everyone else to catch up. And yes that sounds slightly snotty, but it's staring everyone right in the face. It stares at you like a producer saying one of a band's composers wrote "dead boring" songs, yet puts 2 or 3 of them on albums marketed to make as much money as possible. For everyone involved. Particularly NORTHERN SONGS, and EMI. And you don't go putting "dead boring" songs first on an album. You definitely don't do that. So which songs George Martin spoke of written by George Harrison that were boring and dead, we'll never know truly. The actions do not support the words. 

The other problem with the inclusion of George Harrison songs on Beatles ® products is this :

He owned his own publishing company whilst doing so. And he'd been the owner of this publishing company since September 1964. A little while after the establishment of Northern Songs had bypassed asking George Harrison (or Ringo Starr) if they'd like to earn some publishing royalties on the songs they were performing in the studio, and night after night on the road. Or as a "thanks for helping us achieve our dreams" thank you to Harrison at least for sticking with Lennon and McCartney for so long achieving it. Because there was a time that George Harrison was the only "Beatle soon to be" that was earning money playing gigs, and Lennon and McCartney were doing ... nothing. Now, forgive me if it takes some time to back that statement up, I read it years ago. Any updates to this portion will be noted and amended. But there was a time Lennon and McCartney, somewhere around 1959 weren't doing a damn thing. But George Harrison was playing in another band, doing gigs, and someone pulled out at the last minute, and voila - Harrison gets Lennon and McCartney off their asses and gigging again. We'll verify these details later. 

DETAILS VERIFIED 10th August 2019

Bill Harry is a person I pretty much "trust" to get most of their early history correct.  In the below statements, he is correcting details in Cynthia Lennon's book "John." (published in 2005 I believe). I did have email conversations with Bill Harry years ago regarding the validity in the assertion that The Beatles "picked the Sgt.Pepper crowd." There was little validity in the assertion. 

She states that John and his group “performed as Johnny and the Rainbows from the back of a lorry at a street party to celebrate Empire Day in May 1956”. She obviously got this inaccurate information from Julia Baird’s book. The gig actually took place in Rosebery Street on Saturday June 22 1957 and there are photographs of the event which clearly show the name Quarry Men on Colin Hanton’s drums. John didn’t form the Quarry Men until March 1957, so how could the group have been performing in May 1956?

Regarding the Quarry Men and the Casbah Club, she says “Pete had suggested to his mum that they ask one of the beat groups that were springing up all over town to come and play there. She agreed and they invited the Quarrymen.” (Incidentally ‘beat groups’ is an anachronism – the local rock and roll bands weren’t referred to as beat groups until after the launch of Mersey Beat in 1961). The Quarry Men had ceased to exist and George Harrison was in a group called the Les Stewart Quartet which had been booked for the Casbah residency. It was only after Stewart refused to accept the gig that George and fellow member Ken Brown decided to ask John and Paul, who were no longer performing, to reform the Quarry Men and ask Mrs. Best if they could take over the residency.

She also says that Mal Evans was present at their first appearance at the venue. I’d always assumed that they had first met Mal a couple of years later at the Cavern, when he became friendly with George. The Casbah was a tiny little cellar under the Best’s house, it would have been impossible for them to play “regularly, to audiences of up to four hundred” and as the Quarry Men they only appeared seven times at the club.

This publishing company, Mornyork, became Harrisongs in December 1964. And with the formation of Harrisongs in 1964, George Harrison retained 100% of the copyright ownership. And he earned 80% of the royalties derived from any compositions published by it, with 20% going to NEMS. In 1970, he cut NEMS out of that deal, and retained 100% of the royalties. 

But this is a guy who waits four years to use that publishing company. He also doesn't write a damn thing with it, or for The Beatles until he's offered 1.6% in Northern Songs by 1965. 

Do I want to write songs and own them outright, and yield most of the profits?

Or do I want to write songs, not own them at all, and my shares in this public company are so small that I can be bought out by anyone with enough money. And there's plenty of people on the open market with enough money. 

George Harrison, in all his wisdom takes option 2. 

It doesn't seem that smart to be honest. Or maybe it is. 

He's seen his bandmates sign a contract without looking at it. They thought they were going to own Northern Songs themselves, but found out it was only going to be shared (at best.) They didn't own their songs, and had literally given them away (along with his composition "Don't Bother Me") So he gets his own publishing company where no one owns it but him, and he gets most of the profits. Does this sound like a person who saw something happen, and said "that ain't happening to me!" You also have to look at the 1950's and 1960's and try and name the artists who had their own publishing companies, or record labels. Um, there weren't many. I mean, I can name a few, but it literally makes George Harrison's Harrisongs; unprecedented. I think of Dave Clark of the Dave Clark Five. He was a proper businessman. He'd lease their recordings out to record companies. He owned their master recordings. When the business was done pushing the product, he'd get it back. That's why the Dave Clark Five had their own private jet by 1967. Because Dave Clark knew what he was doing. Sam Cooke knew what he was doing. Unfortunately he was gunned down before truly putting it into practice. I also believe Chuck Berry was fairly savvy about publishing and owning things. So George Harrison, being a member of the most popular band Liverpool ever pushed out of the Mersey, stands to make a ton of cash putting a Harrisong on a Beatlemania era product. 

But he doesn't. After that Northern Songs "sorry, we didn't mean you or Ringo" deal, George Harrison doesn't write another composition to be included on a Beatles album until he becomes a full fledged lower rung Northern Songs employee. And then he pushes out 2-3 dead boring songs to be included. 

One should ask a Paul McCartney, or a Ringo Starr what they thought of George Harrison owning Harrisongs. Which was a far better publishing company for the artist hands down, but opting to be a Northern Songs lower tier, might be bought out by a department store owner at any time composer instead. It's a very strange move. Maybe it was the attitude of George Martin that said to Harrison "my songs might not make it onto these albums if I own the copyright and most of the profits. They might get rejected immediately. Maybe it's better to play as a team member, and just .... wait." Maybe it was the dismissiveness of Lennon and McCartney of Harrison composing anything?

A lot of the girls were mad on him, so we always wanted to give him at least one track. Then George started to catch on: 'Why should you write my songs?' And he started writing his own.

From when George first started, he would deliver one song per album. It was an option to include George in the songwriting team. John and I had really talked about it. I remember walking up past Woolton Church with John one morning and going over the question: 'Without wanting to be too mean to George, should three of us write or would it be better to keep it simple?' We decided we'd just keep to two of us.
He wrote Don't Bother Me. That was the first one and he improved from that and became very good, writing a classic like Something.
Paul McCartney
Yeah. Maybe it was that attitude. That might say to me, um, if I act like an upstart here and try and get something of mine on these albums, where NEMS only receives 20% of the profits, and don't own the copyrights at all, that none of what I write gets on any albums. And my wages will solely come from gigs, and performance royalties at best. And who knows how long this Beatlemania thing is going to last? Two years? Six months? How long did I like Elvis Presley until I thought he wasn't cool anymore? Maybe Northern Songs is my best bet. 

So when in 1968 he sells those shares in Northern Songs, and brings out Harrisongs he also ...

Completely changes his modus operandi. 

He stops writing Indian or avant garde, non-pop songs. He actually starts writing "popular tunes." It does not sound like blossoming to me, when this composer brought "Isn't It A Pity" to The Beatles back in 1966. And it was rejected by Lennon. Harrison was still hawking this song in 1969, it's just the Beatles disaster epic "Let It Be" cut out the sequence where he discusses how badly burned he was by that rejection. By 1968 he figures, well, if The Beatles don't want them, I'll sell them to others. 

By 1970, after "Something" had a few months to produce a reaction and start getting covered by other artists (it's the second most covered song in the Beatles catalog), unlike Lennon and McCartney, Harrison owns that song, and gets all of its royalties. He'd cut NEMS out of the Harrisongs partnership. Lennon and McCartney watch their songs go bye bye, Harrison says "I own it all." So losing those songs he wrote under the Northern Songs banner was just merely sacrifice. Producing Indian, or avant garde compositions was biding time in a business sense. He pursued his passions, and said Art was more important than profit. His producer didn't care either way. His bandmates sometimes showed enthusiasm for his compositions, and other times not. Either way, whenever Harrison wrote a song for Northern Songs, Lennon and McCartney got more money from it than its composer. It was less work they had to do coming up with material to fill two sides. 

It's just important to note:
After the formation of Northern Songs, George Harrison formed his own publishing company. 

He did not write any material for The Beatles from the time of that formation, until he was offered partnership in Northern Songs. Was their time to produce material? Yes. Did he? No. 

The question must be asked: 
Why does an artist who owns his own publishing company where he owns complete copyright ownership, and the lion's share of the profits, decide to write songs for a publisher that gives him no ownership and much less profit. Is it for tax purposes? Is it because he feels none of his songs will be on albums if he shows that he reads contracts, knows a thing or two about artist's rights, and stands to be one of the first artists to own their own material and profits derived from?

It should make you think, in the many years I've been saying it:
If it's difficult enough with the attitude of both producer and bandmates about including your songs on product ® when your stakes in the company are only 1.6%, how difficult is it going to be to include your songs on albums where you own the copyright AND most of the profits from what you write. 


I've said this online for nearly 15 years. The George Harrison Forum witnessed it. YouTube has been filled with comments about it. Facebook gets notified of it anytime something about George Harrison and songwriting is posted. I've said it many times, but it's always the same thing. I'm just posting a blog about it now, so it goes on some kind of "record of things said." 

Trust me. I've been the only one saying it for years. 

Saturday, 6 September 2014

Think For Yourself

That period November 1966. It's so convoluted.

Paul McCartney. Beetle Killer.
Airs 22nd October 1966. Episode No. 33 ~ Nowhere Man / Paperback Writer 
McCartney, in searching for a cure for Yellow Fever, injects Harrison, Starr and Lennon with a serum that instantly kills them. 

Here's McCartney quoted in BEAT, the periodical put out by KRLA in California. At the very end he announces "It's all part of breaking up the Beatles."

14th November 1966 it's announced that two Beatles have approached Allen Klein for management. Epstein / Lennon / Harrison / Starr all deny these claims. McCartney? He can't be reached. He's on a mystery trip to Africa.
Christopher Sandford makes claim in "McCartney" (2006) that it was McCartney that approached Klein to handle Beatle affairs.
3 years later McCartney would be "The Beetle Killer". Effectively being "forced" to sue the other three Beatles because Allen Klein was contractually "untouchable."
We all know what Lennon, Harrison and Starr thought of Epstein's death in August 1967. They were shocked. Stunned. 

What were McCartney's thoughts at the time? Can you find any quotes? Eulogies? Grief? Sorrow? Anything? 

Why does he immediately start "managing" the band's affairs as soon as Epstein dies? He wastes no time putting them back to work. 

Why does Harrison in Anthology believe Epstein's death had suspicous aspects to it. But McCartney does not. They are two different people, with two different viewpoints granted. But why would one member of this band believe their manager died in a different way than what was reported, and the other believe there was nothing to it whatsoever. The one person it seems that had no comment about it at the time, and went straight back to work as soon as it was announced. This may be the same person who approached Allen Klein in 1966 for there to BE such an article appearing in November 1966 stating Klein was approached by a Beatle or two for representation. 


Third Man in the Beatles riddle:

Brian Epstein yesterday dismissed as "ridiculous" news that American film producer Allen Klein had been approached over the future management of two of the Beatles. 

The article goes further into the story claiming a third man represented the interests of the two unnamed Beatles. This was by Klein's lawyer, but it is very hard to make out his surname due to the scan quality of the document. It's a Mr. Martin M..... Which two Beatles? No one knows, but Epstein, Lennon, Harrison and Starr all denied this story. 

Now why should we believe anything about this rumour?

Well for one, the guy that can't be contacted because he's in Africa, seems to have been missing for almost 2 months by this point. That's why!

Saturday, 9 August 2014

Only a Saturn Song ...

Visually shown in the Torpedo series, this is what's going on esoterically. 

The esoterica within:

Stuart Nettleton's The Alchemy Key :
"An esteemed Jewish scholar and Masonic Librarian once congratulated me on my work. Old and frail, he has now passed-on. But he generously gave me four great gifts that have since grown in value. Second only to his friendship, was his gift of the major Arcanum of the Merkabah. Showing me a piece of paper, which he had already cut into the form of a cross, he silently formed a hollow, perfect cube. This is the cubic throne, which is the vehicle in which one ascends toward the Light.It is the cube or unfolded sacrificial cross of the sacred marriage. A Druze candidate wears a blood sprinkled cube at his initiation ceremony, symbolizing that the cube unfolded is the bloody instrument of perfection. Similarly, a Masonic Knights Templar receives a cube. The rose on the cross of the Rose Croix is the emblem of the sacrificial king. In alchemy, the new king emerges from the stone. The symbol is one of sacrifice and equally applies to both the divine triad and the Triple Goddess. Often priests symbolized the divine triad or the Triple Goddess by a cube sculpted into a triple-head. For example, a triple headed ram represents the perfection of the Egyptian God Amun."

The form of a cross turns into a hollow cube. Which is essentially what you see happen in Yellow Submarine during the Sea of Science section (Only a Northern Song). The Merkabah you can see in Magical Mystery Tour in the Wizard's hideaway, with masonic checkerboard floor.

48 Beatles come out of the cube. This cube turns a specific amount of times for each event. 48 come out. They earlier show 5 Beatles on the Yellow Submarine (1 John, 1 George, 1 Ringo, and 2 Pauls, 1 that is encased behind glass but mirrors the movements of the one dancing with the others.)

Then the Beatles revolve around the cube as if it were an atom. There are now only 43 Beatles shown, as if the 5 on the submarine have been subtracted from their numbers. There are 10 Ringos. 10 Johns. 11 Georges (a magic number). 12 Pauls. John is in the body posture he is in on HELP. The Sign of Apophis & Typhon. George is in Osiris Risen. (On HELP he is in Osiris Slain.) The cube makes a specific amount of turns, allowing each Beatle to return to the cube (except Ringo) -- as the cube turns, 48 Ringos pass over it. The 49th Ringo turns into a Monster. (Go back to the headstone earlier in the film with No.49 on it.)

This ain't no kiddie film. At all.

To add to that, the cube has turned 7 times when the 49th Ringo passes over it. 7 + 7 X 7 = in effect three 7's. 777, the Star(R) of Babalon. Quite fitting as his birthday is 7/7/40.

Now I'm off to read Isaac Asimov's Lucky Starr and the Oceans of Venus from the late 1950's, where Venusians all wear moustaches, our hero is called William "Lucky Starr" Williams, his sidekick is JOHN "Bigman" Jones, and the first two Venusians they meet are GEORGE Reval, and Tor Johnson.

TOR etymology: DUTCH


tor m (plural torren, diminutive torretje n)


Big man, walking in the park. Wigwam, frightened of the dark. Some kind of solitude is measured out in you. You think you know me, but you haven't got a clue.

To add further:

The 'cube' (aka Saturn, the black cube or Satan in christianity, hexahedron in geometry, Cronos- TIME), flat packed is a cross. That is the cross we bear, that we are 'crucified' on.
George is SATURN in Yellow Submarine.

Ringo is Dr. Frankenstein. Logic / Rational / Reason
John is The Monster / Adam / Man
George is the Mystic / Saturn / Death / The Unconscious

To find Paul in the "Ultra House" they must first crash their car, otherwise they do not know where he is. They must crash the car, destroy it, then they can find Paul. Where is Paul? He has to be made. He is Beauty & The Beast combined. They show you this when they open the three doors. The first door shows you King Kong about to grab beauty from her bed. The animators made sure to let you know she had no shoes on (who would when going to bed?) and you can clearly see her shoes by the nightstand. Think of how big a deal Paul Is Dead clues make about whether Paul is wearing shoes or not. Do you not think it odd the animators would make such a point to make sure Beauty's shoes are seen by the side of her bed, letting us know she is barefoot and sleeping before captured? It seems unnecessary, but they do it anyway.

The second door shows us a train coming out of a wall. Much like Margritte's Time Transfixed. To transfix can mean to put under a spell, hypnotise, enchant. Beauty and The Beast, combined by magic, turns into ....

Paul. The eighth wonder of the world. As advertised. When he exits the 3rd door, they all comment on how nice THEY look. Are they talking about the crowd, or the combination of beauty and the beast? Who knows. All we know is Paul exits and John says in reverse:
 "Was That Paul?"

Why would he not know who it was? That's who they were looking for all that time. Now he doesn't know who Paul is?

Ringo knows where John is.
John knows where George is.
Ringo, John and George do not know where Paul is. They have to crash a car to find him. I'm not saying Paul McCartney died. I'm just saying someone put a lot of effort into telling you he did. 

Their voices were low. Even Bigman had trouble hearing them as they faced one, another,
sipping coffee and allowing no trace of expression in their words.
Lucky said, "You are wrong to do this.”
"You speak as his friend?”
"I do.”
"And I suppose that, as your friend, he warned you to stay away from Venus.”
"You know about that, too, I see?”
"Quite. And you had a near-fatal accident in landing on Venus. Am I right?”
"You are. You're implying that Evans feared some such event?”
"Feared it? Great space, Starr, your friend Evans engineered that accident.”

Saturday, 10 May 2014

The Lord of the Pinkie Ring

I've discussed this before, and here I go again. Because I've just noticed another thing.

Those Eggmen. They are a confusing bunch. They especially get confusing when they start switching jewelry, or maybe start shaving during certain sequences. 

Posted here is a version of I Am the Walrus. What we're looking at (again) is the section that begins at 3:09. We witness the Parade of the Eggmen, soon to follow the Magical Mystery Tour bus. (That also seems to be missing its registration and distinctive logo when it knocks over the tent after the Blue Jay Way section.)

In this Parade of Eggmen, we see the Walrus pass by, then the Rabbit, the Bird, and the Hippo. What we witness is that the Hippo is wearing a pinkie ring. He does not wear this at any other point in the film, but he wears it on the front cover of the album, and depending what promo photos you see. 

Pinkie Ring.

No Pinkie Ring.
There are two people who wear a pinkie ring in Magical Mystery Tour. The most obvious one is Ringo Starr. He wears it throughout the film, and also in his public life. Paul McCartney dons a pinkie ring in one of the Wizard sequences, but this ring is not the same as Ringo's, it's much larger. 

So what we have here is a bit of a switcheroo. A trick. Either someone has borrowed Ringo's pinkie ring, and fortunately had the same size finger that prevents putting it on or taking it off a chore, or ... well, they had another pinkie ring available. Obviously this was thought through. Why would the Hippo have it on in one photo, and then take it off for another. Or have it only in one brief sequence in I Am the Walrus, but no other time? Or for the album cover only? Who is the Walrus becomes very tricky in this instance. 

It's when you get to the Parade of Eggmen that something is missing. And the missing thing is ... Ringo's moustache. The Bird just does not seem to have any facial hair in this one sequence. In the below photo, you can see how easily Ringo's moustache and soul patch can be seen, even when wearing this disguise. Even in the above photos you can see it's visible. It's the only way of knowing it's Ringo. 

Moustache is ... where?

I don't see any moustache there. Yeah, I'd need a clearer image, but you know what? The Bird has no moustache. It ain't Ringo. The Hippo in this sequence wears a pinkie ring. Just like Ringo would. But here's another anomaly. 

I show this photo again, because it shows what the Hippo is wearing underneath the afghan attire. It appears to be a dark blue/purplish floral or paisley print shirt. 

A person who wears something similar in Magical Mystery Tour is George Harrison. During the fireworks sequence in Blue Jay Way. 

So could the Hippo be George? Just for this one sequence? The Hippo wears a wristwatch on his right hand just like Paul McCartney does throughout MMT. He wears a pinkie ring sometimes, just like Ringo Starr does throughout the entire film. He wears a shirt similar to what George Harrison wears in Blue Jay Way. The Hippo could be Paul, George, or Ringo. And I do believe this was done very much on purpose. Because "The Beatles (1968)" further confounds it by having Lennon sing "The Walrus was Paul." And the only person who did not believe John was the Walrus was Little Nicola. 

Further confounding happens when Paul is seen wearing a fox head mask. This shows up again almost a year later during the Mad Day Out photos at the Mercury Theatre. 

I feel like the questions that have been asked of the surviving Beatles for the past 40 years have been all the wrong questions. If I could sit down with messrs Ringo and Paul, the first question I would ask is:

Where did you get these costumes. 

Thursday, 18 April 2013

Mal Evans

It's Paul Is Dead related, and not related. It's just something that's been on my mind for a few years. 

I have a hard time with the Beatles mythology. It paints a portrait where everything is peace and love, and the good works of the gods shine down on the people, and all was well. It's a landscape pastoral, and the sun always shines. 

Why when I read the back stories about them, and the unfettered truth about it all, I recoil in shock. And disbelief. Have I become that jaded I ask myself. Can I not see that there is good, and there is bad in everyone. Like McCartney would have me believe, but not unless it's marketed and digested off the shelves like canned peaches? 

Maybe I'm jaded. But then again, piano keys are made from Ivory. Save the elephants, if not for the sake that we don't get something like Ebony & Ivory hit our airwaves again. Then at least for the sake of the animals killed for our pleasure.

I look at the story of the life and death of Mal Evans, and think, there's something wrong with this, no? Is it only me that sees this? Or is my perspective somewhat skewed in the big picture. What I see is a person who was employed by The Beatles. And he drove them here. And he drove them there. He drove them everywhere. Up and down dark motorways in the beginning. Possibly past cavalcades of screaming fans in the middle. Out to get them a cucumber sandwich later on. He did everything for them without question. He probably saved their lives a couple times too. He probably had to, considering the frenzy that surrounded them between 1964 - 1966. When it all got bigger than life, and they were whisked from this hotel, to that venue, back to that hotel and beyond. I'm fairly sure he may have gotten them out of some very bad situations, and was sometimes, their only link to the outside world. Could you get us a newspaper Mal, if we go outside we'll be mauled to death. Sure boys, anything for you. 

So why was this man gunned down? Well we know why, as police reports stated. He was holding an air rifle, told to put it down, didn't, and then he was gone. Below is a synopsis:

On 5 January 1976, Evans was so despondent that Hughes phoned his collaborator on his book, John Hoernie, and asked him to visit them. Hoernie saw Evans "really doped-up and groggy", and Evans told Hoernie to make sure that he finished Living The Beatles' Legend. Hoernie helped Evans up to an upstairs bedroom, but during an incoherent conversation Evans picked up a 30.30 air rifle. Hoernie struggled with Evans, but Evans, being much stronger, held onto the weapon.
Hughes then phoned the police and told them that Evans was confused, had a rifle, [and was on valium.] Four policemen arrived and three of them, David D. Krempa, Robert E. Brannon and Lieutenant Higbie, went up to the bedroom.They later reported that as soon as Evans saw the three policemen he pointed a rifle at them.The officers repeatedly told Evans to put down the rifle (which they did not know at the time was an air rifle) but Evans constantly refused.The police fired six shots, of which four struck Evans, killing him instantly. Evans had previously been awarded the badge of "Honorary Sheriff of Los Angeles County", but in the Los Angeles Times, he was referred to as a “jobless former road manager for The Beatles”.

Evans was cremated on 7 January 1976, in Los Angeles. None of The Beatles attended his funeral, but Harry Nilsson and other friends attended, although Harrison arranged for Evans' family to receive £5,000, as Evans had not maintained his life insurance premiums, and was not entitled to a pension.

Okay. Charles Higbie you will find very involved in the investigation of Sirhan Sirhan, Robert F. Kennedy's assassin. You'll also find him making things very difficult for investigators in OPERATION ROLLOUT

An Oct. 12, 1980 article in the Los Angeles Times says:

“Operation Rollout, Dist. Atty. John Van de Kamp’s much-publicized effort to investigate police shootings, continues to meet resistance from the Los Angeles Police Department despite high-level talks in May that were supposed to have ironed out problems, according to prosecutors assigned to the program.

“At the center of the conflict is Lt. Charles Higbie, a 24-year Police Department veteran who is chief investigator for all officer-involved shootings in the department and wields great influence with Police Chief Daryl Gates.

“Members of Van de Kamp’s Special Investigations Division…complain that they receive minimal cooperation from Higbie, that he withholds information from them and is overly protective of the officers he investigates.”

I reached Garcetti by telephone last Friday. He was in New York for an exhibition of his photographs. Higbie, he says, “was one of the most powerful police officers in the LAPD,” commenting:

“As a lieutenant, that speaks volumes.” The former district attorney points out that Higbie “reported to the chief directly” and “didn’t let captains, commanders, deputy chiefs or assistant chiefs tell him what to do.”

Garcetti recalls that Higbie “acted like second-in-command at LAPD” whenever it came to “officer involved shootings or in-custody deaths.”

You can read more about Operation Rollout here:

But I guess the point of this blog isn't about getting to the bottom of Mal Evans death. It's more about, why didn't John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr take care of this guy? Even after they dissolved. It shouldn't have even been a question of their togetherness or Apple's disintegration. It's a matter of a man who did a lot for them. And asked for nothing. So he got ... nothing? Is this what this says about giving? That if you ask for nothing in return, you get nothing. And expect no less! The love you take, is equal to the love you make? Well, Mal Evans surely gave a lot of his love to The Beatles. And they surely took it. So where was his suite? His villa? Why was he divorced? Why didn't he have enough money for a house for his family? His employment to The Beatles lasted years, and he was a loyal employee. One of their most trusted, if not the most trusted employee they had. They made him manager of Apple until Allen Klein stepped in. But this isn't the point. 

I have a problem with this, even with Harrison. It's just ... not enough. Yes Harrison gave the family money. And yes he gave Evans a songwriting credit on the RINGO album. Which reportedly is something McCartney promised, but never lived up to that promise going back to Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. If Evans story is true with this, he truly got burned. And that house and mortgage was never forthcoming. But yes Mal, keep getting us our tea. And I'd like a sandwich please. Yes boys. Anything for you. And when the parade was all over, and there was no more tea to get, where would Mal Evans go? Why did he not have a permanent job with one of them? Or some of them? Why was he ever "without". And he was without a lot. By the end he was without a family. And a wife. And in the very end, he was only full of air against bullets. And he wouldn't win. 

Why does this story not say to Beatles fans, cool music, but what shitty people they were? Honestly. It doesn't speak well of people caring about one another at all. And when they were done with Mal Evans, they were truly done. Was he that expendable? Regardless if he was going to release his memoirs. Regardless if he was their caretaker of artifacts and Beatle legends. Regardless of his access to all 4 of them, and the stories he could tell, but never told. Were he alive today, he'd be the single greatest story teller of the Beatles mythology going. He kept a diary. He was with them seemingly 24/7. I'm surprised every Beatle home did not have a Mal Room in it. There's many 5th Beatles. Mal is in contention to being at least Beatle No.5.4, after George Martin, Brian Epstein, Paul McCartney and then ... Mal. Neil Aspinall would be Beatle 5.5. And yeah. I added an extra Paul in there, because they told you all along there were two of him. (See how I made this truly PID related) ;)

Anyway. The story of Mal Evans truly bothers me in their mythology. He's the servant of the gods, beaten down, made to serve, forever on bended knee. I mean, I make it sound atrocious, and he seemed quite a happy man doing such things. At the same time, the gods should have rewarded him for his faith and loyalty to them. Unless of course, they were like God in the Old Testament. Burning people up if he didn't ask for an offering today. Or they did it the wrong way. Maybe Mal did something wrong, and was never going to get the love he made back? It's like the story of Job. Man that guy got burned by God. On a bet with the Devil no less. Mal Evans is like Job. Except he never got chance to get that reward for being so faithful. Is that his fault? When everything is taken away from him after giving his all to it? Did this man not deserve to have his faith restored at the last minute by some miracle? Some intervention? Did Mal Evans not deserve to have a happy home?

Does anyone else have a problem with the humanity in this story? Does it not strike you a little sad? A man is celebrated for a song about a 5 year old boy, though looking at the lyrics, the song has very little to do with that 5 year old boy's situation. Or the advice you'd even give to a child. But it makes for great sell, doesn't it? This song was written for a tiny little boy who was going through the awful breakup of his mummy and daddy. Daddy actually let mummy find out about his special friend quite cruelly. And then daddy told his best friend to tell mummy they were splitting up. But the friend refused. (If I was Pete Shotton, I would have refused too.) Na Na Na Na Na Na. This song has nothing to do with that situation for the little boy. But Beatles fans LOVE to say how much Paul cared for Julian in this situation. And how much closer he was to John. And they make up these glorious fantasies in their heads about Julian possibly sitting on Paul's knee as he sings him this 7 minute opus saying, I wrote this for you kid. And Julian looks up and says, "so I should go out and get her". And Paul says, "as long as she's of age kid, as long as she's of age. Now singalong with me."

It's really the stuff of fantasy. Or Disney. In reality though, that song has so little to do with a little boy, it's amazing it's even mentioned he had any inspiration for the song. But that's how mythology works. And that's how the gods seem to shower down blessings, when in truth, they are as self-serving and oblivious to the sufferings of mankind as that old God in the Testament who was silly enough to put a tree in a garden knowing curiousity was a trait inherent in humans. He should know. He made them. 

So rest in peace Mal Evans. There's at least one of us here on Planet Earth who is wondering why you did it. Did you get anything for it, except for a bullet to the body? Does your ghost grow restless in its urn as McCartney slams an injunction on your beloved ex-wife for selling items you had kept from your days of employment? Were you saving that as a nest egg one day? Did you think your employers would mind if you took a little of this, and maybe a piece of that, because it seems they ignored giving you much in the first place? Were you constantly finding a way of creating your non-existent pension? The one that was never offered? Were you hoping Ringo would release an album one day, and maybe someone would give you credit there? Would the royalties from it, pay you back what you felt you were owed? What did you do it for Mal? What was it for?

The goodness in your heart I imagine. Maybe you're Don Quixote for real. Maybe your faith in humanity was greater than its true worth. I would hate to think that. But I cannot find where you did wrong. You're an example of how others do wrong, if you ask me. 

Rest in peace. 

Monday, 18 February 2013

"A Vargas Girl"

You know, when I go to find out something about something, I don't expect to have to look for two hours to have to get information that should already be known and supplied. 

When you go to any site that sets out to give you a guideline of who appears on the Sergeant Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band cover, and you come across a description of a person in the crowd that is "A Vargas Girl" or "A Petty Girl", doesn't it piss you off? At all? It does me. Quite a lot. WHAT Vargas girl you can hear me incessantly start repeating. WHEN was it painted. I start banging on the desk. WHO is it of? By this point it's just best to clear the room because I am in a fury that "A Vargas Girl" tells me nothing. And if someone's going to go all that way to tell me this is one of the most important album covers of all time, and each individual Beatle (barring Ringo) picked who was to appear on that cover, then "A Vargas Girl" does not do it for me. 

Ladies and Gentlemen. 
A Vargas Girl. She was the love of Alberto Vargas's life. When she died, he ceased to paint. He said there was a little bit of her, in every Vargas girl he painted. He met her in New York City when she was a Greenwich Village Follies girl. He painted her over and over again.


She later became Mrs. Alberto Vargas.

Now finding the Petty girls is going to be a bit more difficult. Especially with people putting crap like "A Petty Girl" or "A Vargas Girl". Lucky to get Petty or Vargas even mentioned in the description. But more importantly you should be asking. These are the people The Beatles admired at the time. So why are people like Sir Robert Peel or H.C. Westermann on the cover, when at first glance, their lives seemed to be filled with nothing to do with The Beatles, as opposed to, oh let's say Lewis Carroll, or Aleister Crowley. It's just obvious they are there for a reason, but the reasons said, may not be what you think. With "A Vargas Girl" did The Beatles pick the image because they liked Vargas's work? They knew of Anna Mae Clift? They liked their love story? What is the reason she is on the cover, and that particular image of her. 

In hunting her down, one tip off that it may be her was this image from 1923 that Vargas painted. Before he did pin up girls (which actually paid the bills), he was quite the serious artist. This work eventually got him a paying gig doing the Ziegfeld Follies girls, which then led to him doing work for Esquire magazine (replacing George Petty in fact as their main artist.) 

 It was the hairstyle, colour and pose that said, Anna Mae Clift may be your girl in the other painting. I estimate the other one has to be around the same time, 1923 - 1925. That's an estimate. But remember. It took me 2 hours, with some help from a friend looking with me, to find out WHO a Vargas girl was. I think it's important. If you want to tell me this is one of the most important album covers of all time. 

So ... have you asked that internal question yet? I already did 25 minutes ago. 

Why are there two artists represented on the cover of Sgt.Pepper that both worked for the same magazine, and is it the artist's work The Beatles admired, or who was painted. It's a question that should have been asked 45 years ago to be honest. 

Hunting the Petty Girls. Next mission. Carry on. ;)

Sunday, 3 February 2013

An Article in the LIFE

You would think one of the easiest things to find in the world would either be the transcript or the article itself printed by LIFE magazine on 17th June, 1967, which was in actuality a reprint of an article in QUEEN magazine (date uncertain) where we get Paul McCartney's admission of taking LSD. 

This is not that very important issue of QUEEN magazine that held the first announcement by a British musician of his use of LSD. This is just QUEEN magazine.

You would think. Of all the "historic" moments in rock, of all the pivotal points in just The Beatles career, you would find this article in its entirety, and his statements in all their glorious .. um glory. 

Salvador Astucia, the guy who wrote Rethinking John Lennon’s Assassination The FBI’s War on Rock Stars, he was asking where is this article all the way back in 2004. What reporter did McCartney talk to? What magazine? Where was it printed?

We learn it was QUEEN magazine that originally printed it. Can we find it? No. The magazine is now defunct. We can presume it's in a May or June issue in 1967 it appeared. At best. I do not know if it ran monthly, fortnightly or what. LIFE ran the article on the 17th. So either they picked up on it really fast, or like the "We are bigger than Jesus" statement, it took some time. But the impression one gets from McCartney's televised statement on the 19th June, 1967, was that the article had just been recent. His statement "Well the thing is, you know, that I was asked a question by a newspaper and the decision was whether to tell a lie or to tell the truth, you know." So that's QUEEN. When did it run? Who knows. LIFE reprints it on the 17th. TV statement the 19th.

16th June, Monterey Pop Festival is held. McCartney is on the board of directors. The day after, LIFE runs McCartney's statements about LSD. Monterey Pop Festival. Huge amount of LSD was dispersed there. Just sayin'. Orange Sunshine. Monterey Purple. HUGE amounts. 

We (well I say we, but in this case I) have only seen "excerpts" from this. A sentence here. A statement there. He called LSD the universal cure-all. He said it tapped into that part of the brain we don't use. He said .....

What else did he say??? Where is this article??? Why after 45 years is it so difficult to find out what his exact statements were, and the content of the piece that got him to make a statement on television?

The BBC sought to ban A Day in the Life because it made drug references. But in all honesty, you and I know that song is tame in any reference. Turn you on, smoke, very tame. Well these LSD statements gave BBC license to say SEE we told you so! 

So where are they? Why can you not enter into google
17th June 1967 + LIFE + Paul McCartney + LSD + transcript

(AMENDMENT - That's because some websites list the wrong date. It was the 16th June 1967 silly Doctor Tomoculus!)
And get an instant result. With a scan even of the article! Or just what words appeared? This whole article was the basis for the national and then international coverage of McCartney's admission to taking LSD. And by proxy, the other Beatles.