spacer.png, 0 kB
spacer.png, 0 kB
spacer.png, 0 kB

Who did... PDF Print E-mail

Who did The Beatles back and with whom did they play?

PeteBest: His full name is Peter RandolphBest.

He wasborn in the Indian city of Madras on 24 November 1941 to anAnglo-Irish family. His mother, Mona Best, was a Red Cross nurse,and his father, John Best, an Army physical training instructor. In1944 Pete's brother, Rory, was born, and the following year theentire family returned from India to their home country, settling inLiverpool at 8 Haymans Green, West Derby. Like all Liverpool'steenagers, Pete also became mad about music and started playing withother youngsters in amateur groups.

Hismother, Mona, who actively supported Pete in his passion for music,opened the music and coffee club - the Casbah - in the cellar of herhuge house at 8 Haymans Green. Not for the last time, she did thisfor Pete. The club rapidly became popular among Liverpool's youth,and John, Paul, George, and Stu plus their temporary drummer KenBooth and another guitarist, Ken Brown, with whom they parted companya few weeks later, began performing there. Throughout this time TheQuarry Men, or The Rainbows as they were also briefly known, hadproblems with drummers whom they were forever replacing.

Pete Best,who had his own drum kit, would occasionally help the boys out byplaying with them as a stand-in for the regular drummer they lacked. In June 1960 Pete Best formed his own group The Blackjacks. However,on 15 August 1960, when Paul McCartney offered him the position ofdrummer in the group on behalf of The Silver Beatles, Best left hisown group and joined the Beatles, accompanying them on the first oftheir three trips to Hamburg and recording their first record withthem there. On 1 January 1962, at Decca's recording studio, Peteand the group recorded fifteen now legendary songs.

However,for various reasons, including the fact that during their firstrecording session at Parlophone George Martin reportedly found thatBest and his style of playing did not sit at all well with theplaying style of the other Beatles, and told Brian Epstein that theBeatles needed to change their drummer otherwise the boys wouldn'tget anywhere, the Beatles soon decided to part company with Pete,although it was Brian Epstein who, reluctantly, informed him onbehalf of the group in the morning of 16 August 1962. The next day,Pete performed for the last time with the Beatles at the Cavern Club(15 August 1962).

"Hewas really likeable; he had a big future ahead of him, and I was veryupset when, one night, three of the Beatles came to see me and saidthey didn't want to play with Best" - recalled Brian regretfully.He offered Pete work in one of the groups he, Epstein, was managing.The deeply wounded Pete refused, though. And on 10 October 1962Best made his debut performance with the Liverpool group "LeeCurtis And The All Stars". It has to be said that many Beatlesfans were against replacing Pete Best with Ringo Starr, and reactedto this in very hostile fashion: In addition to setting up picketsin defence of Pete Best, they tried to attack the other Beatles. George Harrison was unlucky: During the next visit to the Cavern Clubhe, unlike the other Beatles, failed to slip into the club unnoticed.He was recognised and received a heavy punch to the face.

It'sworth noting that on 24 November 1962, Pete's 21stbirthday, when he was due to perform at the Majestic Ballroom,Birkenhead, Bob Wooler read out a congratulatory telegram to Best hehad just received: "Happy Birthday, all the best - John, Paul,George, Ringo and Brian". In August 1963, Pete married hisgirlfriend Katy. All in all, Best's post-Beatles career with theAll Stars and The Pete Best Five didn't amount to much: His newgroup failed to win a contract with Decca. Their single released bythe company was unsuccessful, and the "Best of The Beatles" albumreleased by the company Savage (USA, 1965) also failed to reach thecharts.

PeteBest was forever fending off all manner of conjectures by journalistsas to why the Beatles had replaced him with Ringo. The constantfeeling of grievance at the way the Beatles, on the very threshold ofglory, had, to put it mildly, parted with him so messily, and thefailures of his subsequent music career took their toll, and one day,when Katy was at her mother's, Pete locked himself in and openedthe gas valve. Fortunately for Pete, his brother smelled the gas.

By chance, Rory had arrived home at that point and saved him from aninevitable death. Soon after this, in 1965, Pete decided finally toabandon all thoughts of a musical career and took up an ordinary job,working at his own bakery. However, whether he liked it or not, formany he would always remain one of the Beatles. Journalists andthose who were simply fans of his would not allow Pete to remain inhiding. He was occasionally invited to perform on both sides of theAtlantic on TV programmes, and he gave a fair few interviews tonewspapers and magazines. His autobiography: Beatle!

The Pete BestStory was published by the British publisher Plexus, in 1982. Thelatest news on him suggests that Pete now feels much more confidentthan in those sad years of his life following his "rejection" bythe Beatles. This is borne out by events such as his opening aBeatles restaurant in Singapore (1996) and his part in the re-openingin 1996 of the Jacaranda club, which occupies a prominent place inthe Beatles' story. Here he appeared before new audiences as thedrummer in his own new group, formed for the opening of theJacaranda. According to witnesses there at the time, Pete was ashappy as a child at the opening of the Jacaranda, and said it wasamazing but he couldn't see any difference between the internalfixtures and fittings of the new club and those he remembered fromhis youth.

"Ieven felt that I had gone back to those times which will alwaysremain the very happiest memories for me" - the recent Liverpool"baker" businessman and eternal Beatle, Pete Best, toldjournalists that day.

Anil Bhagwat:He was an Indian tabla musician who was invited to the recording ofGeorge Harrison's song "Love You To", which is the first trulyIndian song in the repertoire of Harrison, and, therefore, of theBeatles as well. George himself played the sitar in the song. Thesong first appeared on the Beatles album "Revolver" (1966).

Lizzie Bravo:She was one of the two girls singing backing vocals in the song"Across The Universe". Her story is as follows: On 4 February1968 the sixteen-year old Beatlemaniac from Brazil, who dreamt ofbecoming an actress, was waiting with dozens of other fans outsidethe gates of EMI's studio in Maida Vale, London to catch anotherglimpse of or, if really lucky, speak to or obtain the autograph ofone of the Beatles.

It was pouring with rain that day, and in thestudio the Beatles were recording a new song "Across The Universe".During the session to record the first version of this song, theBeatles came to the conclusion that the lyrics of the song "Nothing'sGoing To Change My World" should be accompanied by some femalevoices. Paul McCartney solved this problem by going up to the studiogates and grabbing the first girls he came across, asking them ifthey would help record the song.

 

 
< Prev   Next >
spacer.png, 0 kB
spacer.png, 0 kB
spacer.png, 0 kB
spacer.png, 0 kB
  spacer.png, 0 kB