A Beatles Live! Show; London 1962

Young Bloods

Following on from the history of The Beatles Live 1957-63 which looked at how John, Paul, George and Ringo came together, this post contains a simulation of what a great Beatles live show with Ringo might have sounded like. You can hear it as a YouTube Playlist called A Beatles Live Show 1962. I am imagining that it is in London, England in late 1962 before they had a real hit single with Please Please Me but when Love Me Do was the highlight of their show; as recommended by Beatles fan Deni Lavender. 1-2-3-4! Live!! The Beatles!!! I Saw Her Standing There;

Roll Over Beethoven; I can’t seem to find any real recordings in London in late 1962 but I have taken the advice of Deni who saw them live many time between 1962 and 1964 in London. So here is George to the fore on the legendary Ready Steady Go! TV Show. This was Hip Swinging London beamed out to the British provinces so that we could all share in Beatlemania. But their live show still contained many of their 1962 live numbers and this was a staple. Authentic screams over an authentic live performance of Chuck Berry’s Roll Over Beethoven;

Hippy Hippy Shake; The Beatles hit the ground running and then speeded up when they played live. For Goodness Sake, they’ve got some swinging blue Levi’s! Rock n Roll? It’s in the bag – Hippy Hippy Shake;

Johnny B Goode; And then some more Chuck Berry voiced by John from Live At The BBC in 1964. I remember seeing bands in the mid-sixties and they often had very similar repertoires. The Beatles obviously built up the show to an early frenzy in those days. Johnny B Goode.

Twist and Shout; Live in 1962 The Beatles built to an early climax with Twist and Shout which became a show closer in 1963. Always a raucous performance Twist and Shout;

Mr Moonlight; So after being set to stun-mode all larynx’s are reset to rest! So let’s Take it Down easy with Mr Moonlight, later to pad out Beatles For Sale but a key track for the band to take a breather and build up to the final climax. Mr Moonlight;

I Got A Woman; Keeping it easy with the country inspired Ray Charles classic, John jangling along with some nice lead from George and sharp rimshots on his snare drum from Ringo, I Got a Woman;

That’ll Be The Day; A big tune in Beatles history as they played it from Day One as The Quarrymen, it was their first recording in Liverpool and it allows them to keep the tempo going easily enough. This is what familiar classics let you do live. So thanks to Buddy Holly, and to The Crickets for the inspiration of the name The Beatles in the first place. That’ll be the Day;

Memphis Tennessee; Then another classic from good old reliable Chuck Berry and his sexy song about new technology; phones and cars! Long distance information give me a blast from the past – Memphis Tennessee;

Young Blood; But the Beatles were hormonally young and needed a shout out to the audience. In a way this is George’s chance to say I Saw Her Standing There, with the band supporting him with their very Coasters inspired rendition of Young Blood;

Ask Me Why; Great live covers band in 1962 but they were just beginning to develop as songwriters. Were they better than Lieber and Stoller at this time? Definitely not! But with a little Rhythm and Latin this is the very early Lennon and McCartney original Ask Me Why;

A Shot of Rhythm & Blues; But the Beatles, like all bands in the sixties relied heavily on material written by others until Lennon/McCartney and Bob Dylan introduced the requisite idea of singing songwriters. A cover knicked from the cover by the legendary Johnny Kidd & The Pirates whose Mick Green played with Paul on his Run Devil Run (with Dave Gilmour even). So a marmite shot of the reliable Bovril of A Shot of Rhythm & Blues,

I Forgot To Remember To Forget; A classic country crooning pop song recorded by Elvis Presley, who had a lot of Tupelo country honey in him, in 1955. England was dominated by Elvis, despite the legions of fans for Cliff , until the Beatles helped them to forget. Before that it was I Forgot To Remember To Forget, ahh, but we did;

Sure to Fall (In Love With You); A little bit of Carl Perkins country which lets George play around on the fret-board and Paul croon so that we were sure to buy them a  Scotch and Coke after the big finish – Sure to Fall (In Love With You),

Besame Mucho; A Little bit of Latin, which was going to be the next big thing in 1962 according to NME magazine. This was a number one hit in the USA in 1944 and a predictable club standard by the time the Beatles tackled it. Personally I think it was Pete Best’s showcase number – Besame Mucho;

Some Other Guy A favourite of mine and starting to build to a big finish with the Big Three’s arrangement of another Lieber and Stoller song Some Other Guy (as recommended by Kevin Donovan hiding at the back there in the Cavern Club). So here are the really Big Three and Some Other Guy; that’ll be the Ringo then;

Lucille; Then the screamer’s screamers. Lucille, written by Little Richard in 1957 and covered by thousands of artists, including the Everly Brothers, eventually going to number one in the US country charts in 1983, but a show-stopper for Paul in 1962 – Lucille;

Long Tall Sally; Paul seems to be enjoying himself again as he pulls out his screaming vocal stops again, but this time with Long Tall Sally;

Dizzy Miss Lizzy; Ready for a big finish at a dizzying height with Dizzy Miss Lizzy by one of John’s favourites Larry Williams. The only version I can find live is from the Hollywood Bowl in the States in 1965 (!) but George is good form with guitar and John leads off as though he is in a club and a big solid version to start off the screams – Dizzy Miss Lizzy;

Love Me Do; And so to their biggest hit at the time and the last tune before Scotch and Cokes in the bar and then back to the Commer Van for a lorra fun for all  (thanks Mal!), closing the show with their one and only hit, who knows if they will have another (apart from their legion of fans) Love Me Do;

Bonus Track

1963 And to let you know what they were like a year later in 1963 once they were a big hit band going round the country, waiting for the Daily Mirror to discover Beatlemania, here is a quite wonderful colour Pathe News Report from Autumn 1963, which would have been available at your local cinema in the UK. This film was organised with the help of Brian Epstein about The Beatles coming to play a live show in England in your town in 1963. The Beatles get out of the clubs and Come To Town ;


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