It was 50 years ago today, Sgt. Pepper taught the band to play. Not quite. This year marks the 50th anniversary of The Beatles only visit to Australia and the year that Beatlemania hit. In 1964 the band performed to 73 million viewers on The Ed Sullivan Show, played multiple overseas concerts, met Bob Dylan, recorded Beatles For Sale, released A Hard Day’s Night and made chart history when they held the top five spots on the US singles chart. Foxtel’ s Studio 132 will be celebrating the Fab Four this Saturday with a series of documentaries and concert films as The Iris explores in more detail.
John Lennon: One To One
This is John Lennon’s last full-length concert performance filmed on 30 August 1972 at Madison Square Garden in New York City. Here, Lennon is joined by his wife, Yoko Ono along with guests like Stevie Wonder, Eric Clapton, Roberta Flack and Sha-Na-Na for a concert that features his solo hits: “Imagine”, “Mother”, “Power To The People”, “Instant Karma!” and more.
Yeah Yeah Yeah
This documentary looks at the legacy of The Beatles, which started with the release of their first hit single, “Love Me Do”. This film is set against the backdrop of the annual International Beatles Week Festival in Liverpool. Each year, tribute acts from over 20 countries meet to celebrate a group which really began when John Lennon met the then 15-year old, Sir Paul McCartney at St Peter’s Church, Woolton in 1957. From here the group would play at various local venues, with the most well-known being the iconic Cavern Club where a statue of Lennon can now be found. This documentary looks at their meteoric rise and the reasons behind their influence and continued longevity.
Paul McCartney: Live Kisses
This is an intimate, 13-song film directed by Jonas Åkerlund and captures a magical evening where Sir Paul McCartney entered Capital Studios in Los Angeles to record his 15th studio album. The process would prove similar to how he used to record with The Beatles and would include performances by the London Symphony Orchestra, jazz musician, John Clayton plus Diana Krall and Stevie Wonder. The record would ultimately become a collection of pop standards and two original McCartney compositions with highlights including: “Ac-Cent-Tchu-Ate The Positive”, “Bye Bye Blackbird” and “I’m Gonna Sit Right Down & Write Myself A Letter”.
Good Ol’ Freda
This feel-good documentary tells the story of Freda Kelly, a shy, Liverpudlian 17-year old who was asked to become a secretary to The Beatles. This film looks at the naive girl who was forced to grow up as she worked with a group who wanted to hit it big and subsequently conquered the world. Here, she reflects on her career, is self-deprecating, charming and funny and remembers what it was like to be caught in the eye of a musical storm.
Electric Proms- Paul McCartney
This concert film was recorded in 2007 and sees Sir Paul McCartney joined by a full band and special string section and performing cuts from an amazing career in music. Among the highlights are the Beatle favourites: “Eleanor Rigby”, “Hey Jude”, “Let It Be” and “The Long & Winding Road” plus Wings hits: “Band On The Run” and “Live & Let Die”.
Studio Loves: The Beatles premieres on Foxtel’s Studio 132 on April 5 from 6:30PM.