Bonus Book Review: “The Cats Came Back” by Sofie Kelly

The cats came back sofie kellyI’m finally somewhat caught up on my First to Read books after posting this review (I have two more books on the docket, but the reviews aren’t due until August), so I’m going to pour myself back into my stack of Beatles books as soon as I step away from the keyboard today.

I guess I should have paid closer attention to the details of The Cats Came Back before signing up to review it. I didn’t realize that it was the 10th book in a series called A Magical Cats Mystery by Sofie Kelly. This would explain why I got so lost in some of the characters and their back stories. Still, it was an enjoyable read just like I had hoped it would be and provided me with a nice break from reading books about the Beatles and other biographies.

It’s always nice to dip into some light fiction and a couple of cats to take one away from the harsh realities of today’s world…and Hercules and Owen are just the cats to do it! Though, I get the impression that the fictional small town they live in has a very high crime rate if the author is on book ten.

Leave a comment

Filed under Bonus Book Reviews

Bonus Book Review: “The Darker the Night, The Brighter the Stars: A Neuropsychologist’s Odyssey Through Consciousness” by Paul Broks

Another book from my list of First to Read list, The Darker the Night, the Brighter the Stars: A Neuropsychologist’s Odyssey Through Consciousness by Paul Broks is due to be published on July 3, 2018.

What an amazing story! I’m actually honored to be able to have read this book before it was released. Paul Broks does a fantastic job of combining the tragedy of his wife’s death from cancer with his beliefs as a neuropyschologist. As a man who doesn’t believe in an afterlife, the author opens up about his internal struggle of knowing that he will never see his spouse again. At the same time, he justifies his atheistic point of view by sharing some of his work with his patients and scientific studies done on consciousness. But he doesn’t stop there in his explanation or self-exploration. Broks also discusses the beliefs of the great ancient philosophers of Greece and Greek mythology to enforce his point of view.

If there is one downside to this book, it’s that about midway through, the author gets a little to technical in his explanation of brain function for the layman to understand. Still, this book is a must for those that enjoy philosophy, psychology and the afterlife.

Well done!

Note: Anyone who enjoys reading can sign up at First to Read. You get the privilege of reading early releases of various genres of books in exchange for your reviews.

Leave a comment

Filed under Bonus Book Reviews

Bonus Book Review: “Long Players: A Love Story in Eighteen Songs” by Peter Coviello

Long Players A Love Story in Eighteen Songs Peter CovielloLong Players: A Love Story in Eighteen Songs by Peter Coviello is a book that wasn’t even close to what I thought it was going to be about when I anxiously volunteered to receive an advanced copy for review from First to Read. Here I thought I was going to get a book/study about music and relationships and how they intertwine and effect each other. Instead, I got the story of a man who cries at the drop of a hat and likes to make mixed tapes/CDs for people he knows. I’m not sure where I went wrong, but less than 100 pages into this book, I had to stop reading it because I just didn’t care. And the fact that if you took away the author’s adjectives, adverbs and prepositions, this story would have ended a lot quicker! Way too many words… But really, it’s not you…it’s me!

Just sayin’…

Leave a comment

Filed under Bonus Book Reviews

Old Beatles News: On The Skids

Last week, I got wrapped up scanning old newspapers online trying to research a topic about The Beatles for some future use. I don’t know what I’ll do with the information I’ve collected on the topic I chose, but it’s now stashed away in a folder should I ever need it.  

While perusing, I came across this wickedly funny article that appeared in the Editorial section of The Post Star in Glen Falls, NY on September 10, 1964. I clipped it and saved it to share with you all…

It’s kind of hard to imagine that anyone in the U.S. hadn’t heard the Beatles music by September 10th of that year considering that The Beatles had already made two visits to America and had toured 25 cities from February 9-16 and August 19-September 20. And let’s not forget that they had already appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show four times. From 1962-63, The Ed Sullivan Show averaged over 12 million viewers and over 14 million in from 1963-64 (there were just 51 million TVs in the U.S.).

The worry over the Rolling Stones was a little premature, I think. It was in July 1964 that the Rolling Stones scored their first #1 song in the U.K. (It’s All Over Now), but they wouldn’t make it to #1 in the U.S.  until 11 months later. In June of 1965, that the Stones hit number one with Satisfaction on the U.S. charts. And truth be told, the Stones were from the upper-crust of London, while the clean cut Beatles heralded from the lower-middle class of Liverpool. Obviously, you couldn’t judge a bad boy musician by the length of his hair…just look at Beethoven or Liszt!

And let’s not even get into trying to compare The Kinks to the Fab Four! I’m just not even going to try to go there…

Anyway…enjoy the article! I hope you get a couple of laughs out of it. I know I did.

Until next time…

 

 

4 Comments

Filed under Old News

Beatles Quotes: He said what?!

After the Beatles became worldwide phenomenons, there is very little of what they said or did that didn’t get recorded in some way. From 1964 until today, whether on film, radio or print media, when a Beatles speaks…people listened! So on August 1, 1966, when Paul McCartney was interviewed on BBC’s David Frost at the Phonograph, the first minute of his interview made the front page of the Sunday Argus-Leader in Sioux Falls, SD on August 7, 1966. Amazingly, the article does a very good job of misquoting McCartney (imagine that!), so here’s a transcript of the fist minute (out of nine minutes) of the interview that this story was pulled from:

Frost: It is alleged by certain people in your organization that you’re very soon off to America. Does that fill you with delight?

McCartney: Yeah. It’s good. I enjoy it in America. I think I like England much better as a place.

Frost: Why?

McCartney: I don’t know. It’s the atitude of the people generally, in America that makes it, um, not as good a place to be as England.

Frost: Whatja mean? Uh…just sort of the intolerant or…

McCartney: Well, I don’t know really. The kind of people we meet in America tend to be…uh…you know, heads of corporations and publicity business things, so I know we don’t get a good feel of American life, but they all seem to believe that, sort of, money is it! Which is true to an extent but not all the time, ya know. They believe in it all the time!

Frost: Yeah, well, they’ve carried it all much further than we have. They’re much more efficient about it and much more frightening about it.

McCartney: Mm yeah, much more frightening!

Just to bring you all up to date, Paul McCartney currently owns no less than four properties in the U.S., including Beverly Hills, Manhattan, the Hamptons, and Arizona. And as of today (June 2018), his net worth is estimated at $1.2 billion making him the 2nd richest musician in the world behind Andrew Lloyd Weber! And let’s not forget that he’s currently married to a Jersey girl, Nancy Shevell…his second American wife.

Whaddya think of us now, Macca? Not so scary….huh?

 

1 Comment

Filed under Beatles Quotes, He said He said

The Beatles in Atlantic City

Once again, I was off daytripping. This time we were in Atlantic City to meet up with author and Beatles expert Sandi Anne Borowsky and her husband Mark. They were in town to see Ringo in concert at the Borgata last night, so we spent a little time with them having lunch, gambling, smoking cigars (the husbands!), talking and seeing Ringo’s art show.

While waiting to meet the Borowky’s on the boardwalk outside the old convention center, I shot the video above to give everyone a sense of what it looks like live from the boardwalk. Once again, I tried to get inside to shoot some pictures, but was turned away. Believe me when I say that Sandi and I both tried our best to get them to turn on the lights and let us go in!

Atlantic City Convention Center

The old Atlantic City Convention Center opened in 1929

According to Wikipedia, this building is referred to as “Boardwalk Hall”, but according to the tickets for the Beatles concert there on August 30, 1964, it’s called Atlantic City Convention Hall, so we Beatles fans will have to just agree to disagree on the name (there is a new convention center a mile away that was built in the 1990’s so it’s almost a moot point now). Interestingly, Wikipedia also says the hall has a capacity of 14,770 for concerts, but the Beatles Bible says they played before 18,000 that night. *shrug*

After meeting up and having lunch, we headed over to the Borgata to see Ringo Starr’s Art show. It wasn’t as large as I had hoped it would be, but it was very busy. If you spent $6000 or more, you would get to go to a Meet & Greet with Ringo, but since this blog doesn’t pull in that much, I took a pass. The show travels with Ringo while he’s on tour and is run by Scott Segalbaum, who (when he’s not traveling with Ringo) is traveling with his own Rock Art Show and famous Yellow Submarine and Beatles cartoon illustrator Ron Campbell.

Ringo's Rock Art Show at the Borgata in Atlantic City, New Jersey June 2018

Ringo's Rock Art Show at the Borgata in Atlantic City, New Jersey

 

 

 

 

 

The Borgata also do a great job of decorating their lobby and had Beatles music piped in to boot!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now…here comes the sad part – rumor has it that after we left the art show and the Borgata, Ringo came down to the art show! So much for having to spend $6000! Oh well…the story of my life.

Until next time…

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Beatles concerts

The Beatles in Rome

Life gets very hectic in my world these days and isn’t allowing me a lot of time for reading or reviewing. One reason is because I was in Rome last weekend! Here’s a clip of me trying to tell you all about the Teatro Adriano and it’s Beatles link.

The Teatro Adriano was built in 1898 and as I state in the video, the Beatles played four shows there…two on June 27 and 28, 1965. The shows were at 4:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. and the setlist was the same 12 songs they had been performing throughout their European tour (Twist And Shout, She’s A Woman, I’m A Loser, Can’t Buy Me Love, Baby’s In Black, I Wanna Be Your Man, A Hard Day’s Night, Everybody’s Trying To Be My Baby, Rock And Roll Music, I Feel Fine, Ticket To Ride and Long Tall Sally).

I wasn’t able to get inside the theater, but did get a fuzzy picture of the lobby through the glass doors. It’s now a multiplex movie theater, but I still would have loved to see the inside.

I did visit a bookstore while in Rome looking for any new and interesting Beatles books, but all I found was the usual suspects or books in Italian and unfortunately, I don’t speak Italiano! I wish I had more to report, but even though the Beatles are loved around the world, they weren’t the main focus of our trip…but we did hear several cover versions of their songs while sitting in restaurants.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Until next time….

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Beatles books