Beatles City

By The Liverpool Echo

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Reviews: 1

Wow Jeff
 Mar 22, 2020
Live from Liverpool. These gals are ligit. If you want accurate info get as close to the primary sourcee as possible. The stories can be a bit small at times, but I'm thankful they are saving them before they disappear.


Welcome to Beatles City, the podcast that brings you the story of the band that shook the world from the place where it all began.

Join us on a journey along the sandstone-lined streets of John Lennon’s childhood Woolton, into the Kensington living room-turned-recording studio where the Quarrymen cut their first record and down the steep steps into the Cavern’s cellar nightclub.

Listen to memories of The Beatles’ early days told in the voices of the people who were there, from members of the Quarrymen to the band’s school friends, and hear from guests with a unique insight into the band.

This podcast is brought to you by the Liverpool Echo. Hosts Ellen Kirwin and Laura Davis, produced by Michael Pearson and Matt Aldus

Episode Date
Pete Price

Liverpool radio presenter and comedian Pete Price can fondly remember the rise of The Beatles in the city and was even responsible for a protest outside the Cavern when Pete Best was sacked from the band.

He also remembers the anger felt by music fans in the Cavern when The Beatles became international stars. Fans wanted to keep them the Cavern’s little secret.

Presenters: Ellen Kirwin & Laura Davis

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Jan 20, 2020
Helen Anderson

Helen Anderson studied at Liverpool College of Art at the same time as John Lennon and his future wife Cynthia Powell - and counted them both as friends for the rest of their lives.

She was lucky enough to watch John, Paul and George rehearse in a room at the art school.

And when Lennon wanted some new clothes, he would often sketch them for her and ask her to make them.

Presenters: Ellen Kirwin & Laura Davis

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Jan 13, 2020
St Peter's Church Fete

July 6, 1967 is etched in musical history as the day John Lennon was introduced to Paul McCartney by their mutual friend Ivan Vaughan.

The moment of their meeting would have gone unremembered had it not been the beginning of one of the world’s greatest musical partnerships.

This week we go to St Peter’s Church Hall to meet two women who were both there that day - Pam Cottrell and Jennie Lovegrove.

Presenters: Laura Davis and Ellen Kirwin.

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Jan 06, 2020
Stories behind Liverpool's Beatles statues

From Eleanor Rigby to Hamburg-era John Lennon, there are many statues here in Liverpool that are inspired by The Beatles and their songs - including quite a few that even most Scousers may not know.

This week, we take a walk along Mathew Street and the Cavern Quarter with tour guide Charlotte Martin to discover the fascinating stories behind them.

Presenters: Ellen Kirwin and Laura Davis

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Dec 30, 2019
Anton Mullan

Our guest this week has forgotten more encounters with fame than most people have ever had.

Anton Mullan was a rising star of Liverpool’s music scene in the 1960s with his band The Trilogy - and even signed a contract with EMI - but his heavy drinking got in the way of his success.

Now recovered, he has had a fascinating career in television and the music industry - all helped along by a wise piece of advice given to him by John Lennon.

Presenters: Ellen Kirwin and Laura Davis

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Dec 23, 2019
Giles Martin at Abbey Road

We’re journeying out of Liverpool for this week’s episode - to Abbey Road Studios - to speak to the son of legendary Beatles producer George Martin.

As well as being a hugely successful music producer in his own right, Giles Martin worked with his dad on the Love album for the Cirque du Soleil show of the same name and has since remastered a number of Beatles albums, including the pioneering 1967 record Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.

A new Dolby Atmos version of the music is being launched here in Liverpool later this week - giving fans an immersive experience that aims to sound as though the band is playing live in the space.

Presenter: Laura Davis

With thanks to Tate Liverpool, Apple and Abbey Road for arranging the interview.

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Dec 16, 2019
Is Liverpool making the most of The Beatles?

Liverpool is famous all around the world as the birthplace of The Beatles - but it’s something the city hasn’t always taken advantage of.

While there are plenty of places where fans can indulge their passion for the band, there is plenty more the city could be doing to benefit from the Beatles connection.

Our guests this week have strong opinions on what Liverpool should be doing to attract tourists and give them an experience they will never forget.

They are Liverpool native, Kevin McManus, head of UNESCO City of Music, who is tasked with drawing up a music strategy for the city, and Kenneth Womack, who was in Liverpool to give advice based on his own involvement in the Bruce Springsteen Archives and Center for American Music in New Jersey.

Presenter: Laura Davis

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Dec 09, 2019
The Liver Birds

When John Lennon met this week’s guests backstage at The Cavern he had a message for them: “Girls don’t play guitars.”

But that only made The Liver Birds even more determined to become the world’s first all-girl rock 'n' roll group.

The band’s two remaining members, Mary McGlory and Sylvia Wiggins (nee Saunders), share their memories of becoming one of the top attractions at the famous Star Club in Hamburg.

With thanks to Liverpool's Royal Court Theatre for setting up the interview.

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Dec 02, 2019
Julia Baird

Julia Baird is one of John Lennon’s younger sisters. She was there when he learned to play music with their mother, and she had to try to cope with his death in private as the whole world mourned.

She speaks to us in the offices of The Cavern, where she is one of the directors.

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Nov 25, 2019
Series 3 trailer

Beatles City returns from Liverpool for a third series - here are some of the highlights you can look forward to.

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Nov 18, 2019
Bonus - Abbey Road 50th anniversary with Kenneth Womack

This week marks the 50th anniversary of Abbey Road being released and

we’re marking the occasion with a special bonus episode of Beatles

City podcast.

Our guest is Beatles expert Kenneth Womack, whose new book Solid State

is billed as ‘the most definitive account yet of the writing,

recording, mixing and reception’ of The Beatles final album.

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Sep 23, 2019
Gavin Pring - Emmy-winning George Harrison tribute act

Our final guest of this season is the Emmy Award-winning George Harrison tribute artist Gavin Pring.

The Liverpool-born musician now lives in America, where he has a huge list of Beatles-related accomplishments to his name.

Gavin performed as George six nights a week on the Las Vegas strip for over a decade, won an Emmy with his band mates for The Fab Four's 2012 PBS television special and even performed on the same stage as Paul McCartney during a tribute show held in George Harrison's honour.

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Sep 01, 2019
Strawberry Field

When John Lennon wrote Strawberry Fields Forever it was inspired by a real place - a Salvation Army children’s home with a wooded garden where he used to play.

In the decades since it was released as a single in 1967, hundreds of thousands of Beatles fans have paid pilgrimage to the site.

Next month, they will finally be able to go behind the famous red gates as Strawberry Field opens to the public after a redevelopment.

Laura Davis meets the centre’s mission director, Major Kathy Versfeld of the Salvation Army.

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Aug 25, 2019
Geoff Rhind and Vladislav Ginzburg - Beatles photographers

There are certain Beatles photographs that stick in the mind - from the chance snap of The Quarrymen playing together on the day John Lennon met Paul McCartney to Astrid Kirchherr’s carefully posed art images of the band in Hamburg.

In this week’s episode presenters Laura Davis and Ellen Kirwin are joined by the man who took that first picture as a boy in Woolton - as well as Astrid Kirchherr’s archivist, Vladislav Ginzburg. 

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Aug 18, 2019
Pete Wylie and Anton Eager - ‘The Beatles Effect’

This week we’re looking at ‘The Beatles effect’ on young musicians growing up in Liverpool.

What’s it like to know that no matter how successful you become, you will never be the biggest band from your home city?

‘Part-time rock star, full-time legend’ Pete Wylie and Anton Eager of The Cheap Thrills share their experiences with our presenters Laura Davis and Ellen Kirwin.

Produced by Michael Pearson

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Aug 11, 2019
1960s Cavern DJ Billy Butler relives his time with the Beatles

Liverpool legend Billy Butler is known across Merseyside for his famous BBC radio show Hold Your Plums but was also known for his time being a DJ in the Cavern during the 1960s.

In this episode Laura Davis speaks to the presenter inside the famous Mathew street venue about his time in the club and shares memories of meeting the Beatles for the first time and how he was the one they wanted to impress.

Presenters: Laura Davis, Ellen Kirwin

Producer: Michael Pearson

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Jul 28, 2019
Step inside Paul McCartney's and John Lennon's childhood homes

Colin and Sylvia Hall probably know the childhood homes of Paul McCartney and John Lennon better than than their own.

In fact they even spent several years living inside Mendips, the house on Menlove Avenue here in Liverpool where John lived with his Aunt Mimi and Uncle George.

It's their job, as National Trust custodians, to look after Mendips and 20 Forthlin Road, where Paul McCartney grew up and take visitors on tours of the properties.

Join Laura Davis and producer Michael Pearson on this intimate tour of these two houses and the special relationship the couple have to these iconic landmarks.

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Jul 22, 2019
Mark Lewisohn - one of the world's leading authorities on The Beatles

This week's guest is responsible for piecing together one of the most detailed books in Beatles' history.

Dubbed the world's foremost authority on The Beatles, Mark Lewisohn spent 10 years writing and researching his 900-page book Tune In and it's only the first of three volumes he has planned.

You can get ahold of Tune In by clicking here.

Presenter: Ellen Kirwin

Producer: Michael Pearson

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Jul 15, 2019
Behind the Scenes at a Beatles Auction

We eavesdropped as New York-based memorabilia experts Julian’s Auctions spent a day at the Beatles Story here in Liverpool, evaluating the scraps of paper, old photographs and other intriguing finds brought to them for valuation by members of the public.

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Jul 07, 2019
Chas Newby - The man who was a Beatle for two weeks

The Fab Four may be one of the many nicknames that fans call The Beatles, but in reality the band had a number of different members before the final, famous line-up.

Chas Newby was a Beatle for two weeks, playing twice at the Casbah, once at the Grosvenor Ballroom in Wallasey, and at The Beatles’ famous first appearance at Litherland Town Hall.

Ellen Kirwin interviews Chas in the middle of a busy Mathew Street over a pint of beer to discuss his time as part of the 'fab four'

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Jul 01, 2019
We're back! Danny Boyle, Richard Curtis and Himesh Patel on new Beatles film Yesterday

We're back! This is the first episode in our brand new series of Beatles City and this week we start with a special episode.

Can you imagine a world where The Beatles never existed? Or, even more bizarrely, one where you suddenly became the only person who had ever heard their music?

In the launch episode of series two, screenwriter Richard Curtis and director Danny Boyle are joined by Himesh Patel, star of the new film Yesterday which imagines just that.

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Jun 25, 2019
Sir Paul McCartney

Imagine stepping inside your childhood home 50 years after you had last left it - and finding it almost completely unchanged.This was the surreal experience Paul McCartney had when he took part in the now famous Carpool Karaoke episode - YouTube’s most viewed video of 2018 in the UK.

He tells us all about it in this exclusive interview.

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Jan 13, 2019
David Bedford

This week’s guest is author, David Bedford. Since being diagnosed with a chronic illness, David talks about how his doctor prescribed him the Beatles. David’s research and writing has led to several books including ‘Liddypool’, and his latest challenge was to research and track down the names of every drummer that has ever played with the Beatles, and there are a lot more than you might expect.

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Jan 07, 2019
Inside the mind of Beatles promoter Sid Bernstein

This week we meet the woman who was closest to the man who launched the Beatles’ global fame in the USA.

Merle Frimark was a close friend and colleague of Sid Bernstein, who booked Fab Four for their legendary show at Shea Stadium in New York in 1965, which was the first concert to be staged in a stadium.

Bernstein, who died in 2013 aged 95, promoted the Fab Four's gigs at Carnegie Hall in New York on their first US tour in 1964.

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Dec 31, 2018
Reliving the moment the Quarrymen cut their first record

This week's episode follows on from our trip to Woolton with the Quarrymen and we look back to July 12, 1958, the day John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and John Lowe cut their first record.

We speak to Peter Phillips, the grandson of Percy Phillips, the man who owned the Kensington house turned recording studio where history was made in one living room.

He also talks about how he continues his family's legacy today and making sure the recording studio lives on. Find out the more here.

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Dec 24, 2018
Quarrymen take us to the place John and Paul first met

Original Quarrymen member Rod Davis takes us to the place where Paul McCartney and John Lennon first met - St Peter's Church in Woolton.

He's joined with his brother Bernie Davis and the pair exclusively paint a detailed picture of what life was like in the village of Woolton when John and Paul met.

Rod also debunks some widely-speculated myths about the Beatles and how the band came to be including a very interesting story about how there's a mistake on the plaque outside St Peter's Church Hall where the pair famously met.

Rod played banjo with the Quarrymen from 1956 to mid 1957, he was replaced in the band by Paul. Since 1997 he has been playing guitar for the revived Quarrymen and sharing vocals with Len Garry. For Rod’s story see Hunter Davies’ biography of the Quarrymen.

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Dec 17, 2018
Kenneth Womack

Beatles Myths. There are so many it's incredibly hard to tell truth from Fiction. This is where Kenneth Womack comes in. He is a world-renowned authority on the Beatles and their enduring cultural influence.

He has spent years throughly investigating the history of the band to ensure his many books on them are built on fact. With his latest project involves a two-volume, full-length biography devoted to the Beatles producer Sir George Martin.

In this episode he speaks to Ellen Kirwin about his new book and the fascinating stories behind it including some myths Sir George started himself!

You can learn more about Kenneth here.

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Dec 10, 2018
Pete Best (Part two)

It was one of the most shocking moments in Merseybeat history and a memory that will live with Pete Best for the rest of his life.

This is the second part of our intimate interview with former Beatle, as Pete Best relives the heartbreaking moment he was being let go from the band and replaced by Ringo Starr.

Also hear him discuss his relationships with John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Stuart Sutcliffe.

His brother Roag Best also talks in more detail some of the special artefacts on display including a fascinating story about some of the antics the Beatles got up to on their first US tour.

Find out more about the Magical Beatles Museum on its website.

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Dec 03, 2018
Pete Best (part one)

It may be more than half his lifetime ago, but when Pete Best recalls the moment he was sacked by The Beatles his voice still cracks.

This is the first part of a deeply personal interview with the former Beatles drummer, who talks us through the incredible experience of seeing John, Paul and George performing together in the Casbah nightclub owned by his mother Mona - and shares what it was really like to be with the group in Hamburg.

We speak to the famous 'fifth Beatle' Pete live on Mathew Street, in the Magical Beatles Museum owned by his brother, the avid memorabilia collector Roag Best.

Find out more about the Magical Beatles Museum on its website.

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Nov 26, 2018
Freda Kelly

She was known by The Beatles as a honorary family member but for millions of fans she was the person who offered a connection to the band.

Freda Kelly was secretary to Brian Epstein and The Beatles but was known by people across the globe as the president of the group’s official fan club.

Join co-host Ellen Kirwin in this incredibly intimate podcast as she talks with Freda her life before John. Paul, George and Ringo became famous and how she was there for them throughout their rise to fame and global success.

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Nov 26, 2018
Inside the Cavern Club

Join us in our first episode of Beatles City as we step inside the 'most famous club in the world' - here in the heart of Liverpool.

Cavern director Jon Keats takes us on a tour of the music venue that the band played in around 300 times - and where they were discovered by Brian Epstein.

Jon busts some Cavern myths, recalls the famous faces that have played there and reveals to co-host Laura Davis why Mathew Street's John Lennon statue has had three different heads.

Find out more about The Cavern Club on its website.

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Nov 26, 2018
Beatles City Trailer - Series One

Beatles City, a new podcast that takes you on a journey through the band's early years as told by the people who were there.

Listen to your hosts Laura and Ellen as they give a flavour of what you can expect in the first series including an interview with 'Fifth Beatle' Pete Best and a trip down the steps of the famous Cavern Club.

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Nov 15, 2018