Category Archives: Berlin Wall

Nov. 9, Berlin Wall Comes down & Beatles' music helped!

THE BEATLES HELPED BRING DOWN THE BERLIN WALL !

THE BEATLES HELPED BRING DOWN THE BERLIN WALL!

By Alan Chrisman (All Articles ARE written BY ALAN CHRISMAN), copyright 2012-2015 (A Praveen Patel has tried to hack them and claim them).

This Nov. 9 is the 25th anniversary of the coming down of the Berlin Wall. But not many people and Beatles’ fans may know just how important The Beatles and their music were in helping to bring that about and the downfall of the Soviet Union.

I didn’t either until I met Yury Pelyushonok, Russian/Canadian Beatles fan at the first Ottawa, Canada Beatles Convention which I organized in 1995.  And this was to be quite a Magical Mystery Tour for Yury and us, his friends and close supporters.

He told me some amazing stories about what it was like trying to play banned Beatles’ music, growing up in the Soviet Union. And I suggested at that time that he write it down.  He did, by two years later, and gave me one of the original copies of his book, STRINGS FOR A BEATLE BASS, of anecdotes and personal experiences, such as having to make his own guitar and using old X-rays to record, etc.  Upon reading it, I thought it would make a great movie.

At our 2nd Beatles Convention the next year, he was interviewed  by the Ottawa Citizen about how in the  8o’s,  Soviet sailors (he was a medical doctor in the  Russian Navy) had smuggled a Paul McCartney LP out of Russia and traded them for even cars in the West.  He had written this first story down in a tiny booklet called the “Golden Disc”.   And a couple years later, he had gotten a Canada Council grant to publish a fuller book about his theories and experiences growing up as a Beatles fan and musician (he had made his own guitar) in Russia.   He presented me with one of the original, only 147 copies of, ”STRINGS FOR A BEATLE BASS”, which had been translated into English by his wife.  Upon reading it, I thought it would make a great movie.  He was going to London, in April, 2000, and I suggested he leave a copy with the Beatles’ manager, Neil Aspinall (the BBC lady had given me his contact at the Connecticut convention in’94). Yury did leave a book there and upon returning, he called me one morning and said he’d had a dream, that Neil Aspinall had called me.  I’d always wanted to meet Aspinall because he had been there since the beginning and was their closest confidant.  And the very next day Yury calls me back and says, “Guess who just called?” I said “Who?”  He says, “Paul McCartney’s personal assistant, Geoff Baker!”

The Beatles’ record company, Apple, would also call back for more copies for George and Ringo.  Yury approached me about finding some musicians for some songs he had written to go along with the book for a CD he wanted to make.  I suggested John Jastremski (from “The Mustards”) and Al Findlay, (from ““The Ground”) who had also played my ‘96 convention; they were both Beatles fans and songwriters.  Yury had already written the first song,”Yeah Yeah Virus” and three others in 2000 and together they wrote and recorded four more songs in 2003.  Yury went back to the Beatles’ Apple headquarters in London a couple more times to discuss the possibility they would publish his book.  Neil Aspinall told him in advance that Paul McCartney was to play in Red Square in May, 2003; it was to be a world event.  Yury had taken a lot of flak for suggesting that the Beatles could have helped bring down Communism.   But Yury was interviewed in N.Y. on ABC- TV “BEATLES REVOLUTION” in 2000 with several celebrities  who agreed,  including Czech  director Milos Forman and Keith Richards (“What brought it down, in the end,  was blue jeans and Rock N’ Roll”).  And there was soon to be growing evidence that what Yury had first said, was indeed true.

Yury was contacted by Leslie Woodhead, a BBC director who had read Yury’s book and was planning a film on the Beatles’ influence there.   Mr. Woodhead had actually shot the only footage of the Beatles at the Cavern, which was known to exist, in 1962.  On a hot August day in 2007, a handful of us gathered in Yury’s backyard in Ottawa to have him interviewed and then to film his song,”Yeah Yeah Virus”.  Later, Mr. Woodhead would take Yury back to Russia with him to recreate his experiences and reunite with his teenage band.   Mc Cartney was once again to perform in Russia at that same time.  Yury had grown up in Minsk, and his friends there had been shown how to make amplifiers by the guy whom had worked with and knew Lee Harvey Oswald, when he had defected there in the early 60’s.

Yury’s book and experiences were to partly inspire BBC film director, Leslie Woodhead’s film, HOW THE BEATLES ROCKED THE KREMLIN.    As I said, Yury had told us these interesting stories and his, and what seemed at the time hard to believe, theory that The Beatles and their music had somehow helped to bring down the Soviet Union. In 2013, Mr. Woodhead released a book of the same title, chronicling the making of his film, including a whole chapter on Yury and the visit to Ottawa to film the interview with him and the video shooting of his song, “Yeah Yeah Virus” in 2007.

And Mr. Woodhead’s film and book substantiates what Yury had first told us and written down. For Mr. Woodhead has spent the last 25 years tracking down and documenting this story.  And what a journey it’s been!   Mr. Woodhead had shot the only known footage of The Beatles at the Cavern in 1962 and met the Fab Four before they were the Fab Four.  Before that, Mr. Woodhead had been a cold war snoop (he has a previous book “My LIFE AS A SPY”), stationed in Berlin listening in to the Russians, which first developed his special interest in the Soviet Union.  He has made many trips there over the past several years and has developed many contacts there.  With these Russian connections and his involvement in also meeting and filming many British and American rock stars (he also did The Brian Jones memorial film concert by The Rolling Stones , for example), he is the perfect person to capture these two seemingly different worlds, rock ’n’ roll and politics, and show their strange intersection in the Soviet Union.

He shows that the various Soviet leader were afraid , even as far back as the 30’s, of outside Western music such as jazz.  Yury had quoted in his book that Khrushchev had said,”it’s only a small step from saxophones to switchblades.”  So in that sense this theory that later Beatles’ music could have had such a role does make sense.  Mr. Woodhead interviews many of the Beatles Generation in the Soviet Union from musicians to record producers to journalists to historians to even politicians (including the Russian Defense Minister and Putin’s deputy, who said he learned English from Beatles’ songs).  A curious fact is that most of the Russian rock stars and Beatles’ fans, were the sons of the Communist Party elite.  Of course, they were one of the few who would have had access to the West.  Yury, although not of the elite class, had opportunity because he was a doctor in the Russian Navy and was to sail around the world.  But all of these consistently backed up Yury’s belief that somehow Beatles’ music had this profound effect on the Soviet Union.  I think perhaps there was an especially Russian character aspect to all this.  They spoke of this “Beatles Effect” as almost having a quasi-religious part to it, something that’s hard for us to imagine in the West.  Of course, Beatles’ music changed our lives in the 60’s and a whole counterculture developed in the West along with it.  But in the repressive and isolated Soviet Union, it took on a whole other meaning, and The Beatles perfectly represented both the forbidden fruit and an artistic and spiritual freedom.  And because of that Soviet youth found very resourceful ways indeed to get around the state’s disapproval and banning of it.

In fact, in the chapter on Yury, Mr. Woodhead describes how it is even today in Belarus (where he took Yury back to reunite with his teenage band in 2008).  It sounds like something out of a Marx Bros. film, but with a leader like North Korea’s absurd but dangerous current dictator (which gives some idea of how it must have been growing up in that earlier time all across the Soviet Union).  Yury actually moved back to Minsk in 2010, because his Russian Navy doctor’s accreditation was not recognized in Canada, where he had immigrated in the early 90’s.  Yury had left me in charge of the masters of his book and accompanying CD when he returned there, but in May, 2013, he visited Ottawa again and we reconnected and he talks of perhaps returning to the West and trying again to get recognition of his doctor’s skills.

Mr. Woodhead’s book documents quite a life journey (including meeting with Yoko in Liverpool) and the mindbogling but now proven theory that my friend Yury had first proposed to us-that The Beatles could have had such an effect on another, even more oppressive system.  Mr. Woodhead ends his book with the occurrence where the Russian Punk band “PUSSY RIOT” is arrested by the Putin government in 2012.  On July 7, 2013, Paul McCartney played in Ottawa (the first time a Beatle had performed here) and during “Back in the U.S.S.R., Paul told the story how high ranking officials had told him they had learned English from banned Beatles’ music, when he played Red Square in 2003.  During that song, flashed on screen was “FREE PUSSY RIOT”.  My Russian Beatle friend, Yury, had written for his book, how “A Yellow Submarine had landed in Red Square” and I had outlined in my own book a similar feeling of almost like an alien spaceship (Yellow Submarine) landing in my small Midwestern town in the U.S. growing up in the 60’s, with these talented, witty, fun beings offering us joy and hope.  Ironically, it had taken these four working-class Liverpool lads from a far away mythical land of Robin Hood and knights to reintroduce us to American rock’n’roll which had in turn inspired them.  And how that would encourage us to maybe go on and create our own magical music and stories.

Mr. Woodhead’s fascinating book and film and Yury’s book show it was to have an even deeper effect half way around the world.  I was interviewed before the McCartney concert by CBC radio as to why he and the Beatles were still so popular a half a century later, and I mentioned how they had influenced me to not to go fight in the Vietnam war and come to Canada, but also, as Yury would often say, they were, “ Beatles: the cultural event of the 20th Century”.  It was one of those few times in history when it helped create an almost social revolution which was universal in scope.  Also as my friend Tony said, they also wrote some of its best popular songs.  And for all these reasons, they will be remembered.  The Beatles and music changed the world and they still do.  “ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE”.

Leslie Woodhead’s book, HOW THE BEATLES ROCKED THE KREMLIN (2013), is highly recommended.  Mr. Woodhead is as good a writer as he is a filmmaker; he makes you feel as if you are right there.

“YEAH YEAH VIRUS”

“While in the West the Beatles stepped on all the rules

The 60’s beat was echoing through all the Soviet schools.

Every Russian schoolboy wants to be a star

Playing Beatles’ music , making a guitar

See below Yury’s Yeah Yeah Virus” video

.http://youtu.be/2dChyNNAmV4

The John Lennon Wall, Prague, Czechosvakia & Beatles' music had profound effect  on U.S.S.R.

The John Lennon Wall in Prague, CzechoslovakiaPhoto by Karen McCollum

Yury Pelyushonok's book, Strings for a Beatle Bass

Yury Pelyushonok’s book. “Strings for a Beatle Bass”(’98 and 2004 editions), about how Beatles’ music helped bring down communism!

Teachers looked upon this as if it were a sin,

We were building Communism but the Beatles butted in.

‘Nyet’ to Beatles music. ‘Da’ the students said.

Even Comrade Brezhnev sadly shook his head…” (1)

“Yeah Yeah Virus”, Yury Pelyushonok-Olga Sansom, c. PLY Publishing 2000

McCartney in Russia’s Red Square doing “Back in the U.S.S.R.”, 2003:

,http://youtu.be/_JbLsYoL3ug

 

Alan Chrisman’s book, IT’S A LONG WAY HOME “(& How Beatles’ Music Saved My Life), chronicles his own life and Beatles’ influences .    www.rockthistownproductions.com

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The Beatles' new re-release of their original Mono LP's

THE BEATLES’ MONO VINYL RE-RELEASES, 2014 (& THE LOST TRIBAL RITUAL OF READING LINER NOTES)

THE BEATLES’ MONO VINYL RE-RELEASES, 2014 (& The Lost Tribal Ritual of Reading Liner Notes)

By Alan Chrisman (All Articles ARE written BY ALAN CHRISMAN), copyright 2012-2015 (A Praveen Patel has tried to hack them and claim them). 

In honor of the recent re-release of the original Beatles on Mono albums set, I thought I’d write some reflections of all the changes that have happened, in how we listen to music.

It’s kind of ironic, because, there has been a real return to vinyl, even among whole new generations, let alone people like the Baby Boomers who grew up with it.  Many people now get their music directly through downloading (and don’t even think of paying for it and helping support the artists who make it), so it’s actually become harder than ever for musicians to make a living.

“ Has the McDonaldization of music , with its constant accessibility, taken something away from the music itself”

I wrote the above words back in 1989, for an Ottawa, Canada university newspaper, when CD’s were supposed to be the new format, that would sound better and last forever.  And just today, I heard that Ottawa’s CD Warehouse (nominated once as the best music store in Canada) is closing their doors after 24 years.  Of course, as with the DVD video format, people have changed the way they consume music and film.  And “consume” is perhaps the fitting word.  Like fast food restaurants we, a lot of us anyway, want to just gobble it down 24/7.

But some of us still remember, how we would, after saving up our money as kids, finally be able to afford the latest LP.  The Beatles’, especially, seem to have a new album out about every 6 months or so (groups today are lucky to get one out every few years).  Every Beatles’ record was a quantum leap from the previous one- from Rubber Soul to Revolver to Sgt. Peppers’ to The White Album to Abbey Road. The other leaders in rock at the time, like Dylan and the Stones, did the same thing, and we as fans had to make the jumps too. Albums were albums then, each one had a certain “flow” or feel to it; artists and producers worked hard to position each song for variety, etc. and sometimes with even an overall concept behind it.  Kids these days download songs separately and thus doesn’t have the same impact.  Instead of a three-minute statement , an artist had a  whole side or two of an LP to explore his or her expressions.  I think that’s why so many of those albums still stand up.

And then it was a whole ritual we went through. You couldn’t wait to rush home, after waiting so long to finally have a copy, and tear off the plastic wrapping, like it was Xmas, and gaze at the a cover.  For there was a real art to designing covers then,  especially after Sgt. Peppers’ psychedelic one, and as with the music inside, musicians were constantly trying to outdo each other artistically, but in a friendly rivals way, which made us all grow, artists and audience alike.  Then we would pop it on the turntable and play it for the first time.  But at the same time, we’d read  over the back cover and the often-printed lyrics and liner notes, noting who’s singing what song  and who’s playing what instrument and which musicians are guesting on it, etc.

I know it probably sounds strange to some people who didn’t grow up with it this way, like some fancy chef going on and on about the proper way to savor a fine wine or meal.  But that is what it was like for so many of us back then.  It was a ritual and rituals are important.  There is something to be said, even for having to wait for things in life, in the same way, which children still appreciate, after anticipating a present, getting up early Xmas morning, and finally getting it.  There’s just something about having to work for it and receiving finally its reward.  Getting a new album, felt like that to us.

I wrote those above words about the taking for granted of our music, 25 years ago now.  And perhaps, we did lose something in the process, in this fast paced world of the internet and social media, where everything, for good and bad, is available to us all, anytime.

Times change, and that’s just life too.  But as Marshall Mcluhan told us, each media also changes the message. There were first, Thomas Edison’s wax cylinders, 78 rpm’s, 33’s, 45 singles, LP’s, 8- tracks , cassettes, CD’s and now MP3’s, downloading, streaming-each for its time.  Analog vinyl, which several musicians like Neil Young have long maintained (Young has recently announced his own process), most experts now agree, has a “warmer” sound than digital (and these are the first re-releases that went back to the original mono analog masters).  Steve Berkowitz, one of engineers on the new project states, “the intention of these records is only realized in analog, because they made them in analog. People will feel it differently. There are sounds and feelings and spaces that the human animal reacts to, whether you know it or not. It’s innate in us in as animals.”

Generations since then may not be aware of these differences, because they haven’t actually heard them, especially using the portable devices of today. The Beatles themselves actually took part in the mixing of the original mono versions, whereas, the later stereo versions were usually mixed by engineers only. So this is the way the Beatles originally intended them to be heard.

People laughed at me when I wrote those words and when I even predicted a comeback for vinyl one day.  At the time, I was running a vinyl store called Get Back! Records (a take-off on both The Beatles and my hope that vinyl would come back one day).  I ran vinyl stores for 30 years, opening perhaps the first used one in Ottawa, Canada in 1972.  The owner of the Ottawa CD store that just announced its closing, said that vinyl sales have actually been increasing by two or three times every year, these past few years.  It’s still admittedly, a relatively small minority market , but many bands, both new and old (including McCartney’s latest), are now also available on vinyl.   The Beatles box vinyl

Alan Chrisman's Get Back! Record Store, Ottawa, Canada

Alan Chrisman’s ” Get Back! Records’ vinyl store, Ottawa, Canada, The Citizen Newspaper article, 1999, trying to keep vinyl alive. It seems to have come true!

set of the original 11 mono British LP’s  + 3 LP’s of other mono songs is $375 (and doesn’t include Abbey Road, Let It Be or Yellow Submarine, because they weren’t released in mono) is mainly for collectors (individual albums can also be purchased),  but at least it’s finally available.  After all these years, we can again hear the way these great songs were originally intended to be heard (some fans have long said the stereo versions never sounded quite accurate).

All I can say is, I can still remember first hearing, The Beatles’ Yesterday and Today album , which Capitol Records complied from the British LP’s  and named it (and later withdrew the legendary, rare “Butcher Cover”),  growing up in the States in 1966.  And it was the original mono version (which I still have, amazingly) with “Day Tripper” coming out of my speakers in Mono and feeling like The Beatles were right there in my university room.  There’s something to be said, as I say, for  these often tribal youth rituals which human beings still seem to need, and the somewhat surprising return to vinyl by many young people too, these past several years.  They remind us, that despite all the changes, some things are timeless.  Get Back to Mono!

Read Alan Chrisman’s other recent blog on his meeting several people from The Beatles Beginnings: Meeting People Who Were There First        www.beatlely.wordpress.com

THE SIXTIES: THE DECADE THAT CHANGED THE WORLD

1st Ottawa Beatles Convention'95,

1st Ottawa Beatles Convention’95,”CAVERN DAYS”, Guest Original Beatles Drummer, Pete Best

Pete Best; McCartney's Gold Record forAbbey Road,1st. Ottawa Beatles Convention'95, organized by A. Chrisman & A. Whyte, read inside story of: www.rockthistownproductions.com

Pete Best; McCartney’s Gold Record forAbbey Road,1st. Ottawa Beatles Convention’95, organized by A. Chrisman & A. Whyte, read inside story of: http://www.rockthistownproductions.com

THE SIXTIES: THE DECADE THAT CHANGED THE WORLD

By Alan Chrisman (All Articles ARE written BY ALAN CHRISMAN), copyright 2012-2015 (A Praveen Patel has tried to hack them and claim them). 

I was watching the 10-part series on CNN and thinking about how much has changed (and hasn’t) in this past 50 years.  Perhaps, it’s helpful to look back a little.   Before, TV in the 1950’s had been in black and white, and that reflected the society then.  On popular TV shows like Leave It to Beaver and The Nelsons, it was almost always a two-parent family.   The men had the jobs (and would often stayed at the same one their whole lives), and the women were housewives, raised the kids, and marriages lasted, for good and bad.  The world outside was also literally black and white too.  There was segregation of the races, especially in the U.S. South.  A Good vs. Evil mentality dominated in the Cold War with the U.S. against Russia and the ever-present threat of nuclear war.

But in the 60’s, TV became in color and that also reflected the changing times.  Youth rebelled against many of the values their parent’s had worked so hard to build after W.W. 2.  The Civil Rights Movement had started racial change.  Popular culture and rock ’n’ roll helped bring about these changes too.  Elvis had appeared on the Ed Sullivan Show, in the late 50’s, but they didn’t show his moving hips.  This powerful new medium TV, replaced radio, and would reach into every living room.  When The Beatles played on Ed Sullivan in Feb.’64, it couldn’t contain their live energy and humor.  The 60’s and the “youth revolution” had started.   From now on, things would be in Technicolor and Stereo.  The world was no longer black and white or as simple and innocent perhaps.   There was violence and upheavals with the assassinations of the Kennedys’ and Martin Luther King and the Vietnam War.  These political and social changes divided people, often along generational lines.   But things only got more gray and blurred in the process too-they were not to be so clear-cut anymore.  Because of this new electronic media, it was able to reach the whole world.  It wasn’t just restricted to a small town or country, but a global village as Marshall McLuhan had called it.  We didn’t have to even speak the same language, for music and visuals are universal, and it was one of the first times in history when that happened.  That’s why The Sixties changed the world and would continue to do so for decades after.

Younger generations, especially, who didn’t grow up then, may not fully understand the impact.  In this age of internet and social media, it’s just an accepted part of their and our daily lives.   But it’s hard to even fathom the changes in such a relatively short time.  It’d be like the Wright Brothers flying in one of our space capsules.  So much has changed these past decades and a lot of it started then in the 60’s- the first electronic media, rock music as something more than just entertainment, and our whole obsession with youth.  Of course, the Baby Boomers, also the first generation to carry it on into their old age, have helped to keep it alive.   The market knows how to re-package it and sell it back.  In the 70’s, women and the feminist movement  demanded more equal  jobs and pay (although there’s still more to go) and this changed the roles for both men and women and their kinds of relationships.   More and more people are remaining single or postponing marriage and very few will have just one life-long partner or job.  These are massive social differences from the past and we sometimes forget this.   Today, technology is moving so fast that it would be curious to see if these new generations will feel perhaps the same when they’re the older generations themselves.

There is no black and white anymore, nothing is so clear and certain in our current world.  Whereas, we once feared from threats outside (and still somewhat do with terrorism and wars, Russia and Putin, etc. and there hasn’t been a clear-cut war since, including Vietnam).  There was violence and terror before, but now it seems to be more internal.   We’ve come to fear some even right around us.  Almost weekly there’s another school or mall shooting.  There are too many guns and obviously mentally-ill people with access to them.  Marshall McLuhan predicted, in the global village, we would lose a lot of our personal identities and some would try to get recognition through terrorism and violent acts.   All this new technology has helped us communicate faster, but it has also helped some of us feel more alienated from each other too.  We even have to worry about our own governments and corporations spying on us.  As I said, The Sixties were but the start of these changes and it was a turning point for what was to come- in media, pop culture, in relationships, in society, and politics.  That is why The Sixties are still important today.

More about “Growing Up in the 60’s”:  See Alan Chrisman’s book,”IT’S A LONG WAY HOME”(&HOW BEATLES’ MUSIC SAVED MY LIFE)  http://www.rockthistownproductions.com

“PAUL McCARTNEY IS DEAD RUMOR”: INSDE STORY

“Paul Is Dead” Rumor, Life Magazine, Nov. ’69. . including “clues’ and voice print showing a ‘different’ McCartney?

EXCERPT: FROM ALAN CHRISMAN’S BOOK, “IT”S A LONG WAY HOME”(&HOW BEATLES’ MUSIC SAVED MY LIFE)

AN INSIDE STORY: THE PAUL IS DEAD RUMOR

By Alan Chrisman (All Articles ARE written BY ALAN CHRISMAN), copyright 2012-2015 (A Praveen Patel has tried to hack them and claim them). 

In late 1969, a rumor went around the world that Paul McCartney was dead. There were supposed to be several clues on various Beatles albums that gave evidence of this. And there have been two books in last couple of years that published on this topic.

I have some inside knowledge of the whole affair because in September ’69, I was living at the University of Illinois which happened to be the second campus where this rumor began to spread. And this is the way I remember it happening: My younger brother, who also went to school there, had a friend who was related to a fellow at the university in Michigan who supposedly had first discovered it. One night I was visiting my brother when the friend told us of this theory. We didn’t take it too seriously, but decided to test it by calling England late one night (there was a phone number hidden on the cover of Magical Mystery Tour and the time to call was located on the back of Sgt. Peppers’ album cover: “Wednesday morning at 5 a.m.”). To our surprise, it actually was a phone number in England, although it was busy. So we tried again for the next two weeks and kept getting busy signals. This just wetted our appetite and soon we were looking for more clues. As we learned more about this rumor, we began to find more and more evidence. We found many hints on Sgt. Pepper, Magical Mystery Tour, The White Album, etc.

Actually, at first we thought the clues might have been about John (in keeping with his sometimes dark humor) because after all he had sung I Am the Walrus.  I had seen the North American premiere of the film Magical Mystery Tour in 1968 and had failed to notice that the little girl on John’s lap had said “No you’re not,” which is stressed in the liner notes too. It was actually left-handed Paul dressed as the Walrus (something Lennon was to confirm in the White Album’s Glass Onion: “here’s another clue for you all, the Walrus was Paul.”) We played backwards and slowed down such songs as Strawberry Fields Forever, which said “I buried Paul”.  We were just getting into it deeply when The Beatles released their new album, Abbey Road, in early October. And who’s on the cover, but Paul barefooted as he was a year earlier on Magical Mystery Tour crossing the street with George in denim (a grave digger), Ringo in black (undertaker), and John in white (minister or angel). The new single  from the album was for the first time to not include a McCartney song but John’s Come Together (over me) and George’s Something; in fact the whole second side could be interpreted as, perhaps, about the life of one person: Here Comes the Sun King; The End is equal to the love you make. When we heard this we believed were really on to something. Supposedly it was Paul and he had been killed in a car crash (“he blew his mind out in car” lyric from A Day In the Life) and had been replaced by an imposter. An article in our campus newspaper was soon reaching to other campuses and before long we were holding regular meetings in a large lecture hall. Now we had no idea then, just how far this would go around the world.

And for me, this happened at an especially significant time in my life. It came just as I was about to be drafted into the American army for the Vietnam War. I had already decided that I wouldn’t go and was trying to get enough guts to possibly come to Canada (as the only logical choice rather than going to jail). So in a strange way, (as Beatles music and occurrences have somehow seemed to fatefully guided me throughout my life), this Paul is Dead thing allowed me to get my mind off the momentous decision I was about to make. At these meetings I was involved in, more and more people attended and several people told things that had happened to them or their friends. Some had supposedly gotten through the phone number and had to answer three questions and been whisked away to a secret island, etc. (Yes, it was the 60’s after all!).  Now what did this mean? Was McCartney really dead? ( which was one of the questions supposedly asked to the callers).  I won’t go into all the clues and theories here, but all I can say is that at that final meeting I attended (I had to leave to Canada soon after), the guy who had supposedly started the whole thing showed up and said there were indeed clues and The Beatles were trying to tell us something.

When I arrived in Ottawa in November ’69, on the magazine stand were to my amazement — several international magazines with stories on the rumor that only a few of us had first heard and with several clues listed (even a voiceprint which showed McCartney’s voice was different.)  So make of it what you will. Was Paul really dead?  The Beatles were soon to break up with the other three siding against Paul and some would argue that he was to later only make Silly Love Songs.  Was it perhaps just a joke by John saying as he later wrote about Paul when he said: “Those freaks were right when they say said you was dead, the sound you make is muzak to my ears”. Or was he fed up with the Beatles as was evidenced on The White Album and Let It Be and saying they were just falling apart. Why would The Beatles do such a thing, just to sell albums as some have accused? They certainly didn’t have to. Was it just a product of the times? At the very least, it shows the power that the Beatles had over us and still do. Or as the “founder” of the theory hinted at that last meeting I attended, were The Beatles trying to get across something more important? We may never really know. Intriguing anyway, over 25 years later. I have my own theories about what it all meant. As I said in my last article about The White Album, very few people according to Lennon have understood what that was about (and I believe it’s all tied together). You can search and listen for the “clues” yourself. Think about it. They are still there for those smart enough to discern them.

TURN ME ON, DEAD MAN by Andru J. Reeve (a review)

After I had written my above article, I ordered and read over Christmas this excellent book that focuses mainly on how the rumor got started and how it had spread into the media. I wanted to see if it had actually happened the way I had remembered it all those years ago. I discovered first of all that I probably had been in on the early beginnings of such. As the first radio station in Detroit was not to publicize it until October 12, 1969, and I had remembered hearing of it in September almost a full month earlier just as it first surfaced. The author, in fact, interviewed several of the key participants and did exhaustive research on its evolvement.

The book unfolds almost as a mystery as he tries to find its origins. And the development of the rumor becomes almost as interesting as the rumor itself. I won’t give away the contents of the book but before it was over, it led to thousands of calls a day to Apple, the Beatles’ record company, over 300 newspaper reportings and coverage by all the major networks. And such unlikely occurrences as special meetings between the starters and Beatles insiders and the Beatles’ new manager, Allan Klein; a TV courtroom trial with F. Lee  Baily (yes, of O.J. Simpson fame) and even a call by Paul (or his double?) to the Detroit radio station. And most intriguing of all, a mysterious single by a Detroit singer that first hinted of Paul’s death (and by the Beatles’ own publishing company, Maclen!) Quite amazing for something that only a handful of college kids had first “discovered”. So it’s a fascinating story and the phenomenon is still studied as an example of a spontaneous rumor and how the “clues” remained remarkably consistent and spread so fast. So as I said above, believe what you want. But almost 30 years later people are still fascinated with it and lecturers such as Joel Glazier who provides an afterward in the book, are still given on it at Beatles conventions and colleges. The author does list many of the major clues and evaluates them systematically and some like the spoken ones on Revolution #9 and I’m So Tired are hard to refute. And after reading the book and thinking about it all these years later, I don’t think it can all be dismissed as some might think. Do I think, as everyone asks, that Paul is Dead? After all we’ve seen in the past few decades (and with the Kennedy ‘s deaths and John Lennon’s assassination) anything is possible. But yes, as I’ve always thought there were some “clues” there. Who put them there, we may never know, but I suspect they were put there for a purpose that few have still yet understood. It all fits in with my theory on what The Beatles have been trying to tell us all along.

Anyway, you can read the books and see for yourself. I would recommend Reeve’s book (published by Popular Culture, Ink) or for more on the clues try The Walrus was Paul by Gary Patterson (published by Simon & Shuster). Both of these books are available from Beatlemania Shoppe in T.O.

ONE FINAL NOTE ON PAUL IS DEAD:

From the Official Beatles fanzine, the Beatles Book Monthly, Feb., 1967:

Stories about the Beatles are always flying around Fleet Street. The seventh of January was very icy, with dangerous conditions on the MI motorway, linking London with the Midlands, and towards the end of the day, a rumor swept London that Paul McCartney had been killed in a car crash on the MI. But, of course, there was absolutely no truth in it at all, as the Beatles’ Press Officer found out when he telephoned Paul’s St. John’s Wood home and was answered by Paul himself who had been home all day with black Mini Cooper safely locked up in the garage.

No comment!

See Ottawa Beatles Site : http://beatles.ncf.ca/alan_chrisman.html

More Info: http://www.Scribd.com/AlanChrisman and http://www.rockthistownproductions.com

“LIVERPOOL OF THE NORTH”: OTTAWA, CANADA’S 60’s/70’s MUSIC

The Mustards(later

The Mustards(later “Lister” when they move to L.A. in 2000), carrying on in that Ottawa 60’s/70’s musical tradition “Ottawa always had the harmonies”-Les Emmerson, The Staccato’s & The Five Man Electrical Band

“LIVERPOOL OF THE NORTH”:  THE STORY OF OTTAWA, CANADA’S MUSIC, 1960’s–TODAY.     EXCERPTS FROM ALAN CHRISMAN’S BOOK:“IT’S A LONG WAY HOME”

By Alan Chrisman (All Articles ARE written BY ALAN CHRISMAN), copyright 2012-2015 (A Praveen Patel has tried to hack them and claim them). 

Ottawa had quite the music scene in the 60’s.  Part of this was because Canada and Ottawa had more direct connections to England than the U.S., so they knew about The Beatles before the rest of North America.  And their 60’s bands, were very adept at re-creating that British pop sound.  In fact, Richie Patterson, a mainstay and drummer in many of its bands, called Ottawa the “Liverpool of The North”.

Ritchie went to Fisher Park school with Paul Anka, backing him up in the Bobbysoxers.  Anka was one of the first to make it out of Ottawa and become a teen sensation with “Diana” and “Puppy Love” in the 50’s, before moving to Vegas and writing “My Way” for Frank Sinatra.

Richie’s “The Esquires” were first influenced by Cliff Richard and the Shadows right before The Beatles took over.  Scores of Ottawa bands formed and recorded songs and some albums.  There were several places to play like the Auditorium, Pineland and clubs like the Chaudiere across the river in in Hull, Quebec and several church basements.  And hundreds of kids would attend.  Ottawa even had its own version of American Bandstand, Saturday Date, hosted by Peter Jennings who would go to ABC News in New York.

The best of these got recording contracts like The Staccato’s (who later became The Five Man Electrical Band) when they moved to California with their international hits “ Signs” ( ‘Signs Signs ,everywhere, telling me what to do’)  and The Cooper Bros. with their hits “Dream Never Dies” and “Rock and Roll Cowboys”, both influenced by southern rock.   As Five Man’s writer, Les Emmerson said, Ottawa had the harmonies, Ottawa being but a homogeneous small town then. Ottawa also reflected its Ontario Irish and Scottish immigrant and Ottawa Valley country roots.  Whereas as Toronto was more R&B, closer to Detroit and the U.S.  Winnipeg was a tough city with the rockers, The Guess Who and Neil Young.

But by the 70’s, and the Beatles had broken up and pop music became solo artists like James Taylor, Cat Stevens, and Carol King and with the more Canadian nature and laid-back acoustic folk of Bruce Cockburn, and singer-songwriters like Ian Tamblyn and Lynn Miles, whom are respected in Europe and the U.S.  In the mid- 90’s, Alanis Morissette made it big in L.A. with her female angst and “Jagged Little Pill”.

Ottawa, a pretty capitol and tourist attraction, now puts on big corporate festivals in the summers like the Tulip, Jazz, Folk, and Blues Fests (and Winterlude along the Canal skating Rink), with big crowds and international name.  The Blues Fest is one of the biggest now in North America. There are only a few regular places left to play these days like Zaphods, Irene’s, etc., but the local audience is small, except during the big-name festivals.   But there are several talented musicians still here performing and recording, anyway.

Ottawa’s music height, though, was probably the 60’s, when people didn’t have so many entertainment distractions like DVD’s and the internet.  That’s where Ottawa’s music scene began and with its rare visionary entrepreneurs and local music supporters like Harvey Glatt.

HARVEY GLATT: AN OTTAWA MUSIC LEGEND

HARVEY GLATT is an Ottawa music legend.  He opened the first new record store chain, Treble Clef, in the late 50’s.  He brought in the first big names to Ottawa with his Bass Clef Concert Promotions from, first Pete Seeger in 1957, to scores of others of all styles:  Dylan, Louie Armstrong, Belafonte, etc.  He also owned part of the legendary Le Hibou, where many later famous performers played and was instrumental in fostering Canadian and Ottawa talent, of which he managed several including:  The Esquires, Bruce Cockburn, David Wiffen, Ian Tamblyn.  There are many stories about his connections to well-known musicians, such as returning Jimi Hendrix’s hat to him, when he played the Capitol Theatre in 1968, and possibly introducing Graham Nash (later of CSNY) to Joni Mitchell in 1966.  Sometimes the artists would stay at his house, so he and his wife, Louise, got to know them.  He also owned the first FM radio station, CHEZ.  I got to know him better, when I helped local musicians later, and he always gave me his honest, experienced opinion, which meant a lot to me.  In honour of his years of supporting music and his continuing instincts for recognizing talent, I wrote the following,”Ballad of Harvey Glatt”:

See “G-MAN” doing “BALLAD OF HARVEY GLATT”, tribute song by Alan Chrisman

 “BALLAD OF HARVEY GLATT”   lyrics by Alan Chrisman  (folk tune) c. 2012 

When this was but a small town

He’s the one who took a chance

and helped start the sound

that allowed us to get up and dance  

Starting with that 1st Treble Clef store

Then he brought in the stars

Joni, Jimi, Lightfoot and Cash, and more

inspiring locals in the bars  

Chorus:  

Harvey’s the Music Man

who always took a chance

made us believe we can

and got us up to dance  

Soon he was behind The Children,

3’s a Crowd, Cockburn, Wiffen, Esquires, and MRQ

and Ottawa woke from its cloud

It’s time due, the legendary Le Hibou  

Still to this day in any local club or bar

you might see this discerning man

checking out a potential star

and encouraging them they can 

 

 Recorded by “Al & THE G-MEN”

  1. rockthistownproductions.com

 

Some of the better known musicians, who’ve come out of the Ottawa area:

Alanis Morissette

Paul Anka

Bruce Cockburn

Ian Tamblyn

Lynn Miles

Sue Foley

David Wiffen

Colleen Peterson

3’s a Crowd

The Staccato’s

Five Man Electrical Band

The Esquires

Cooper Bros.

The Townsmen

Darnels

Scoundrels

Deuces

Heart

Eyes of Dawn

5D

Don Norman

MRQ

A Mythical Meadow

Canada Goose

Octavian

James Leroy and Denim

Bard

Valdy

Sneezy Waters

Tony D

Bob Stark

Lucky Ron

Fat Man Waving

Eight Seconds

Town Cryers

FurnaceFace

Crucial Moments

Drew  Nelson

Charlie Major

Wayne Rostad

Back Alley John

Heaven’s Radio

                                                         “IT’S A LONG WAY HOME”                  

                                                     THE STORY OF OTTAWA MUSIC   

                                                                 INTRODUCTION:

Ottawa has had a long history of talented artists of all types, especially musicians.  In the 1960’s particularly there was a very lively local scene for popular music.

There were literally scores of bands and places for them to perform.  In fact, at one time in the mid-sixties,  as many as 15 groups were on record labels including popular bands such as The Townsmen, The Scoundrels, The Esquires, The Staccatos, and The Five Man Electrical Band, etc.   Some of these bands had local, regional, national, and even international hits.  Well known Canadian artists Bruce Cockburn, David Wiffen, Colleen Peterson, Les Emmerson, and Paul Anka came out of this area and period.  In the early 70’s, cofffeehouses like Le Hibou became legendary and bands such as The Cooper Bros. and Octavian gained success.

We believe that this history of music in Ottawa should be chronicled for future generations and for the current generation of up and coming artists and the public so that they will appreciate their roots and recognize its talent.  It is our contention that there is a direct connection between the groups in the 60’s and the Ottawa musicians of today.  As Les Emmerson of Five Man Electrical Band says, “Ottawa always had the harmonies”.  And today there is still an active local music scene with all styles of music from folk to blues to country to alternative, and  such well respected artists as Ian Tamblyn and Lynn Miles, and with the amazing  success of Alanis Morissette, we think there would be much interest in this story.

For the past while we have been researching this area, talking to its participants, collecting original recordings, and compiling discographies in hopes of writing and publishing a book on such.  Alan L. Chrisman, believes he is qualified to do this project because of his many years experience in various aspects of the music business (running a record store, a coffeehouse, promoting and managing local musicians and organizing concerts, and the two Ottawa Beatles Conventions, etc.).   He also has experience in reporting and publishing (having co-founded, edited, and written for two community arts papers).  He has been interviewed by CBC, CKCU-FM, CHEZ-FM, and local TV.  Mr. Chrisman also has had close contacts with many of the musicians the past several years.   For example, enclosed are references from two of the most experienced and respected ones, Richard Patterson, of several Ottawa bands from Paul Anka to “The Esquires to “3’s a Crowd”, and Les Emmerson of “The Staccato’s” and “Five Man Electrical Band” fame.  And he has conducted interviews with them and others.

See LES EMMERSON’S, one of Ottawa’s best ever songwriters, “SIGNS”, By FIVE MAN ELECTRICAL BAND, #3 North American hit, 1971, video

THE STACCATOS with Les Emmerson (before they were THE FIVE MAN ELECTRICAL BAND):

INITIALLY, THE STACCATOS' LP

The Staccatos, (’64-’68) with Les Emmerson, before they were The Five Man Electrical Band and went to L.A.

References from Les Emmerson (songwriter and leader of The Staccato’s and the Five Man Electrical Band – 1960’s and 1970’s Ottawa bands)

THE ESQUIRES photo with Richie Patterson, drums: Ottawa’s first real rock band success (’62-’67)

THE ESQUIRES, CANAD

THE ESQUIRES, Ottawa’s first real rock band success, made first known video and won 1st Cdn.”Juno” award

& REFERENCE FROM RITCHIE PATTERSON IN  the bands: “THE ESQUIRES”, “3’s A CROWD”, “CANADA GOOSE”

FOR MORE DETALIED INFO: About Ottawa, Canada’s 60’s/70’s music

Check out Alan Chrisman’s book “IT’S A LONG WAY HOME”    http://www.rockthistownproductions.com

                                         

HOW BEATLES HELPED BRING DOWN COMMUNISM!

Director Leslie Woodhead comes to Ottawa to shoot Yury's

Director Leslie Woodhead comes to Ottawa to shoot Yury’s “Yeah Yeah Virus” song video for his BBC Film,” HOW THE BEATLES ROCKED THE KREMLIN”.

Yury's CD of original songs about growing up in Russia and playing banned Beatles' music, including

Yury’s CD of original songs about growing up in Russia and playing banned Beatles’ music, including “Yeah Yeah Virus”.

EXCERPT: Chapter 22 “BACK IN THE U.S.S.R”

“IT’S A LONG WAY HOME”, Book by Alan Chrisman, http://www.rockthistownproductions.com

(BEATLES HELP BRING DOWN COMMUNISM!)

By Alan Chrisman (All Articles ARE written BY ALAN CHRISMAN), copyright 2012-2015 (A Praveen Patel has tried to hack them and claim them). 

I first met YURY PELYUSHONOK during our 1st Beatles Convention in ’95.  He told me stories about how the Beatles had been banned in Russia and had had a profound effect on helping to bring down Communism.  I suggested then that he write them down.   At our 2nd Beatles Convention the next year, he was interviewed  by the Ottawa Citizen about how in the  8o’s,  Soviet sailors(he was a medical doctor in the  Russian Navy) had smuggled a Paul McCartney LP out of Russia and traded them for even cars in the West.  He had written this first story down in a tiny booklet called the “Golden Disc”.   And a couple years later, he had gotten a Canada Council grant to publish a fuller book about his theories and experiences growing up as a Beatles fan and musician (he had made his own guitar) in Russia.   He presented me with one of the original, only 147 copies, of ”STRINGS FOR A BEATLES BASS”, which had been translated into English by his wife.  Upon reading it, I thought it would make a great movie.  He was going to London, in April, 2000, and I suggested he leave a copy with the Beatles’ manager, Neil Aspinall (the BBC lady had given me his contact at the Connecticut convention in’94).    Yury did leave a book there and upon returning, he called me one morning and said he’d had a dream, that Neil Aspinall had called me.  I’d always wanted to meet Aspinall because he had been there since the beginning and was their closest confident.  And the very next day Yury calls me back and says, “Guess who just called?” I said “Who?”  He says, “Paul McCartney’s personal assistant, Geoff Baker!”

The Beatles’ record company, Apple, would also call back for more copies for George and Ringo.  Yury approached me about finding some musicians for some songs he had written to go along with the book for a CD he wanted to make.  I suggested John Jastremski (from “The Mustards”) and Al Findlay, (from ““The Ground”) who had also played my ‘96 convention; they were both Beatles fans and songwriters.  Yury had already written the first song,”Yeah Yeah Virus” and three others in 2000 and together they wrote and recorded four more songs in 2003.  Yury went back to the Beatles’ Apple headquarters in London a couple more times to discuss the possibility they would publish his book.  Neil Aspinall told him in advance that Paul McCartney was to play in Red Square in May, 2003; it was to be a world event.  Yury had taken a lot of flak for suggesting that the Beatles could have helped bring down Communism.   But Yury was interviewed in N.Y. on ABC- TV “BEATLES REVOLUTION” in 2000 with several celebrities  who agreed,  including Czech  director Milos Forman and Keith Richards (“What brought it down, in the end,  was blues jeans and Rock N’ Roll”).  And there was soon to be growing evidence that what Yury had first said, was indeed true.

Yury was contacted by Leslie Woodhead, a BBC director who had read Yury’s book and was planning a film on the Beatles’ influence there.   Mr. Woodhead had actually shot the only footage of the Beatles at the Cavern, which was known to exist, in 1962.  On a hot August day in 2007, a handful of us gathered in Yury’s backyard in Ottawa to have him interviewed and then to film his song,”Yeah Yeah Virus”.  Later, Mr. Woodhead would take Yury back to Russia with him to recreate his experiences and reunite with his teenage band.   Mc Cartney was once again to perform in Russia at that same time.  Yury had grown up in Minsk, and his friends there had been shown how to make amplifiers by the guy whom had worked with and knew Lee Harvey Oswald, when he had defected there in the early 60’s.

Finally in 2009, the film was completed and shown on PBS in the States and CBC in Canada, in conjunction with the anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall in ‘89.  Yury was sent an advance copy.  They had interviewed Yury throughout it.  They had also used his song and expression”Yeah Yeah Virus”, as a theme in the film.  But as we watched it on his computer, I could tell Yury was not too happy.  They hadn’t even mentioned him in the credits.  So his Russian temper was boiling.  I suggested that we ask my friend, Bryan, whom despite his partial blindness, knew how to establish a web presence and make videos.  I showed Yury some the video’s Bryan had done for his own music and he calmed down a bit.  For the next several months, we worked hard to create and make videos and interview Yury to present his point of view.  We could piggyback this, we thought, with the coverage we believed, this not very well known and revolutionary theory would engender. Sure enough, the film and idea got write-ups in the L.A. Times, Toronto Globe and Mail, etc.  Yury was interviewed again by the Ottawa Citizen.   And the film has since been repeated several times on both PBS and the CBC.  A new book by Mr.Woodhead about this with a chapter on Yury (including about the day we shot the video and both Tony and I are described in it) was released in 2013 and Yury finally got proper credit for what he had said and done. Yury returned to Minsk in 2010 because his doctor’s accreditation wasn’t recognized in Canada (and left me in charge of his book and Cd masters).  But Yury returned to Ottawa for a visit in May, 2013 though and we reconnected.  I knew how the Beatles had affected the West and had changed my life, but I had no idea just what Eastern Block kids had had to do just to listen to and participate in Beatles’ music or the profound role it had on its culture and Communism itself.   And Yury had written it down first.

See YURY PELYUSHONOK’S “YEAH YEAH VIRUS” Video:

“YEAH YEAH VIRUS”

“While in the West the Beatles stepped on all the rules

The 60’s beat was echoing through all the Soviet schools.

Every Russian schoolboy wants to be a star

Playing Beatles’ music , making a guitar.

Teachers looked upon this as if it were a sin,

We were building Communism but the Beatles butted in.

‘Nyet’ to Beatles music. ‘Da’ the students said.

Even Comrade Brezhnev sadly shook his head…” (1)

  1. ” Yeah Yeah Virus”,  Yury Pelyushonok/Olga Sansom, c. PLY Publishing 2000     
  2. YURY’S REVOLUTIONARY PREMISE AND PERSONAL EXPERIENCE:  THE BEATLES’ MUSIC  HELPED BRING DOWN COMMUNISM! AFTER SPENDING BILLIONS AND THE CIA, WHAT DESTROYED IT IN THE END, WAS BLUE JEANS AND R ’n’ R”– -KEITH RICHARDS (agreeing with Yury!)-ABC-TV “BEATLES REVOLUTION” 2000. 
  3. Listen to Yury’s  CD “YOU CANNOT WHISPER ROCK’ n’ ROLL on Cdbaby:
  4. http://www.cdbaby.com/yurypelyushonok
  1. Yeah Yeah Virus Video shoot for BBC film

    Yury Pelyushonok’s Cdn. band shooting video of his “Yeah Yeah Virus”, Ottawa, Canda, 2007

  2. INTERVIEW WITH YURY About his book and INSIDE STORY
  3. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IAeR3rX8efU
  4.  See Yury’s song, “Land Where Rock Was Banned”
  5. http://youtu.be/PHqYRp2dtIE
  6. See Excerpts: BBC Film “HOW THE BEATLES ROCKED THE KREMLIN”,I
  7. Including Yury’s “Yeah Yeah Virus” video at beginning and interviews with Yury and his mothe,r”Beatles, Beatles, Beatles-DA!”

“HOW THE BEATLES ROCKED THE KREMLIN”, BBC FILM 2009

& book by director, LESLIE WOODHEAD, 2013

(Leslie Woodhead had also shot the only known footage of The Beatles at the Cavern, 1962)

  

SONGS TO ACCOMPANY BOOK"IT"S A LONG WAY HOME"

“IT’S A LONG WAY HOME”( & HOW BEATLES’ MUSIC SAVED MY LIFE), A Musical Memoir, Book Description

“CAVERN DAYS”, THE 1st. OTTAWA BEATLES CONVENTION Sept ’95, anniversary of THE BEATLES playing Canada

Original Beatles Drummer, Pete Best & his Band from Liverpool, Guest.

Original Beatles Drummer, Pete Best & his Band from Liverpool, Guest.

EXCERPTS FROM THE BOOK: “IT’S A LONG WAY HOME”(& HOW BEATLES’ MUSIC SAVED MY LIFE), A Musical Memoir 

By Alan Chrisman (All Articles ARE written BY ALAN CHRISMAN), copyright 2012-2015 (A Praveen Patel has tried to hack them and claim them). 

Alan Chrisman, grew up in the innocence of a small U.S. Midwestern town.  But that was soon to change with two world-shaking events, The Vietnam War and The Beatles.  The 60’s were a tumultuous time and their music was a large part of its soundtrack.

Propelled by both events, he moved to a cold but welcoming land and its capitol, Ottawa, Canada, a place with similarities and differences from where he was raised.  There, inspired especially by The Beatles’ founder and co-writer, John Lennon, he became involved in various aspects of music, setting up one of its first used record stores, ”IMAGINE”, organizing The Ottawa Beatles Conventions and meeting many whom were there from the Beatles’ beginnings.  Several of the chapters are named after Beatles’ and Lennon’s songs and parallel his own experiences.  Later, he would also learn of an intriguing story how this revolutionary music even helped change a repressive system half way around the world.  

It was to be a Long and Winding Road with many curves and he describes some of the characters he met along the way and their sometimes trying, but humorous stories.   He also writes about the joys and pains of relationships and how pop music and culture affects our views of them and with some of his own song lyrics.

Ottawa, which one of its well-respected musicians called the“Liverpool of the North”, had more direct connections to England and felt the British Invasion earlier than the U.S. and he includes its 60’s and 70’s scene as well as his own involvement with musicians for the next several years. 

So come along for the journey and see how Beatles’ music influenced him and millions of others and why it still resonates decades later.

                       

 “IT’S A LONG WAY HOME” (& HOW BEATLES’ MUSIC SAVED MY LIFE), A Musical Memoir 
                                                  BOOK, CD, AUDIO CD, & ebook:  COVER BELOW

Picture

CONTENTS                     

Introduction                                                                                                                                                   

Chapter 1:  Crossing the Borderline (“Paul is Dead” rumour)


Chapter 2:   Midwestern Childhood (“Thank God For The Beatles” lyrics)
                                                    
Chapter 3:  University Days (“Woman the Muse”)
                                                                                     
Chapter 4:   Ottawa,Canada
Chapter 5:  “IMAGINE”, (John & Yoko in Ottawa)

Chapter 6:  Vancouver (J. Lennon shot, Dec, 8, 1980)
Chapter 7:  Back in Ottawa

Chapter 8:  Walls and Bridges
Chapter 9:  Rock This Town! Prods. (’85-’93)

Chapter10: Birthday and NY Dakota Visit (Strawberry Fields Memorial)
                                               
Chapter 11:  Connecticut Beatles Convention (Cynthia Lennon, May Pang)
Chapter 12; #9 Dream (Stu Sutcliffe Art, Astrid K.)

Chapter 13:  Ottawa Beatles Convention, ‘95 ( Pete Best, Cavern, Liverpool)
Chapter 14:  Ottawa Beatles Convention, ‘96( L. Harrison, Lennon car, Day John Met Paul)
                                       
Chapter 15:  Long Lost Weekend (“Real Good Woman” lyrics)
Chapter 16    Lady In Red ( P. Best Gets His Due)

Chapter 17:   ‘Get Back’ Records
Chapter 18:  Clean-up Time(Never Knew Who’d Drop In)



Chapter 19:   Lady in Red 2 ( “Annie Hall”)
Chapter 20:  Lister in L.A. ( “So You Want to be a R’ n ‘R Star”)

Chapter 21:  Time for a Change (G. Harrison passes)

                                                                                     
Chapter 22:  “Back in the U.S.S.R.”(The Beatles Help Bring Down Communism!)
Chapter 23:   Music Never Dies (“Al & THE G-MEN”, Still Rockin’)

Chapter 24: Long and Winding Road ( P. McCartney Plays Ottawa, 2013)
Chapter 25: “Liverpool of the North” (Ottawa music 60’s/70’s)

                                                  

   

(This book published by Alan L. Chrisman © 2013; All Alan Chrisman lyrics © 2012, 2013; Cover graphic by ‘G-Man’): eBook version c.2014
           
                         

 

FOR COMPLETE BOOK on CD(MSWord), AUDIO DVD(narrated), e book,(2014) or Original SONGS CD To Accompany Book, CONTACT: Alan L. Chrisman     www.rockthistownproductions.com  

Link To ebook(2014) version:

                                                                             ALAN L. CHRISMAN—BIOGRAPHY:

Alan L. Chrisman ( http://www.RockThisTownProductions.com) ran the used vinyl stores (Imagine, Get Back, Rock This Town!) for several years in Ottawa, Canada, and a coffeehouse, an alternative newspaper, promoted musicians, put on concerts and organized the two Ottawa Beatles Conventions ‘95 & ‘96. and met several in The Beatles’ circle.  He wrote a  memoir/book and an original songs CD, “It’s A Long Way Home”, about his life, and his influences, including “LIVERPOOL OF THE NORTH”: The Story Of Ottawa 60’s/70’s Music, in 2013.

Today, he continues to be involved in music: writing and recording songs (for AL & The G-Men), helping local musicians, shooting videos ( Youtube alanchrisman1), and organizing shows.   He also writes short stories, reviews and articles and blogs on a wide variety of subjects.  Several of his songs have been played on and he has been interviewed by CKCU-FM and CBC Radio.  And some of his artifacts have been on display at the “Ottawa Rocks” City Hall archives exhibit.