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Heinz Edelmann, the designer of the Beatles animation movie Yellow Submarine died in Stuttgart, Germany on July 21 according to Stuttgarter Nachrichten Online (article in German). He was 75 years old. See also examiner.com article ‘Yellow Submarine’ art director Heinz Edelmann dies.
The picture above shows Beatles Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr and George Harrison (1943 – 2001) posing with a cartoon cut-out of fellow Beatle John Lennon (1940 – 1980), at a press review of ‘Yellow Submarine’.
When I was a boy, I was very strict about cover versions of Beatles songs. There was only one legitimate version in my rigid fan mind: the original. Although there was one small exception to the rule: I reluctantly had to admit that Joe Cocker’s version of With A Little Help From My Friends wasn’t bad.
My aversion to Beatles cover versions stayed in my unconciousness. It only started changing a few years ago, when I suddenly started liking all kind of instrumental Beatles covers. Maybe these were the first signs of a midlife crisis. Anyway, the absent voice somehow made it easier for me to like the covers. So this was the weird phase in my life when I eagerly collected all kind of instrumental cover versions. That is mostly jazz, easy listening and muzak. But still, vocal cover versions were a no go zone for me.
Until today, when I stumbled upon the post A Long Time Coming – Wayne Brady (2008) on the Everythig Old is New Again blog. There’s an audio sample of Can’t Buy Me Love sung by Wayne Brady in the post. It’s a soulful rendition that turns the song in something completely new. Thank you Wayne Brady for curing my aversion to vocal Beatles covers!
British Studio Drummer Bobby Graham
No, British studio drummer Bobby Graham didn’t join the Beatles. When The Beatles’ manager Brian Epstein asked him in 1962, if he was in interested in joining the band, Bobby Graham answered: “Why would I want to join a band in Liverpool that nobody has ever heard of?”. Had he joined The Beatles the British music scene would have lost one of its most versatile drummers.
Like many studio musicians, Bobby Graham is a jazz drummer at heart. But he lent his drumming skills to every kind of music. He played the drums for many great British acts of the nineteen-sixties. It’s him on You Really Got Me by The Kinks, for example. You can also hear him on records by Them, Pretty Things, The Walker Brothers, Lulu, and Dusty Springfield. If you’d like to know more about the records he played on, than check Bobby Graham’s discography.
On many recording dates Bobby Graham played together with guitarist Jimmy Page who later would join Led Zeppelin. Like in the music studios in the USA, also British producers relied on experienced and skilled musicians who could record fast and in any style. Studio time was too expensive to take any risks. Back then still most of the music was recorded live and you had maybe four tracks on an analogue tape machine. If somebody messed up it meant doing it all over again.There’s was now software that could edit mistakes easily.
Visit Bobby Graham’s website to get more insight into the hard working life of a British studio drummer.