Wednesday, September 23, 2009
BEATLEMANIA RETURNS! With the reissue of the Beatles catalog and the release of the Beatles:Rock Band video game, all on 9/9/09, there is almost too much Beatle news to report! I'll try to condense it to a 'best of'...
WELL, the wait really is over for Beatle fans who've been waiting a long time for EMI and the Fabs to utilize the technology of master tape to digital transfer that has advanced in the 20+ years since the Beatles albums were originally released on CD. I'm waiting for Santa to bring mine, but I've sampled a friend's and they sound AMAZING. The albums are available in stereo and all but the last three in mono, though the stereo releases can be had separately or as a box set, while the mono discs are part of the box set only. There is a petition out there asking EMI to release the mono discs as separate albums.
SELLIng a million albums in the U.S. in five days means chart domination. The first week, the Beatles reissues took 13 of the top 14 spots on the Billboard Catalog album chart(Michael Jackson sales are still going strong). Reissues are exempt from the Billboard 200, but the box sets are considered new product. The Stereo box debuted at #15 and the Mono box at #40. The Mono box, which the press release and Beatles.com originally said would be limited to 10,000, sold 12,000 in the U.S. alone the first week.
'NOWHere Boy, the biopic about John Lennon's teenage years, premieres next month at the London Film Festival. The movie is based on the memoirs by Julia Baird, John's half-sister, and stars Kristin Scott-Thomas as Aunt Mimi.
CHEAP Trick has been performing the 'Sgt. Pepper' album live from start to finish in special concerts. It's a great idea, and the musicianship is terrific, tho' Robin Zander's lead vocal on almost every song becomes a little tiresome. It's also seems a bit of bad timing to release it two weeks before the remasters and a flood of Beatle product. How did they get it to sound so much like the original? Must be Geoff Emerick, original 'Pepper' engineer who co-produced the recording. 'Sgt. Pepper Live' is now available on DVD and CD. Fear not, ye fans of Cheap Trick's original music, their tour with Def Leppard takes off next month. Also, look for Bad Company's live tour of the Monkees' 'Headquarters' coming soon.
AS IF there wasn't enough caterwauling on "The View", the shrieking sirens welcome Yoko Ono on Wednesday (9/30). Ono proves her business savvy once again. With all the publicity over the Beatles remasters, she's obviously an in-demand media guest. What better time to release her new album? No need to introduce the ladies of "The View" to primal scream therapy as they've been broadcasting it for years.