Category Archives: reviews

Review: Hard Day’s Night Treatment at Lush Spa (Philadelphia)

Inspired by the Hard Days Night Hotel in Liverpool, this Beatles-themed treatment takes away any tension. Gentle passive stretches and comfy pajamas send your busy brain into a golden slumber.” – Lush Spa

Lush Spa Philadelphia

Lush Spa Philadelphia

I admit that I’m not fond of massages.  They always have  left me disappointed in the end because I am just too high strung to actually relax for them.  Put that together with several masseuses who talk, talk, talk through the entire  massages and I usually walk out feeling like I’ve just wasted a whole lot of money!  But when I received a gift certificate from my dear friend Lisa for this treatment, I couldn’t help but get excited.

Lo and behold…this Hard Day’s Night Treatment at Lush Spa, my friends, is what a massage was meant to be!  With a soundtrack of Beatles song interpretations playing in the background, there is no talking done except for a few request such as to turn over, scoot down and then to meditate at the end. This experience was a true pleasure.  If you’re modest…not to worry!  The entire time you’re dressed in a pair of over-sized flannel pajamas.  With a combination of passive stretching and pressure point massage, this treatment fills the complete 75 minutes that it advertises.

But it doesn’t end there.  After your treatment is done, you return to the sitting area where tea and shortbread cookies await you. You are also presented with a gift bag that contains a Golden Slumbers Bath Bomb so that you can continue your relaxing experience when you get home.

My massage therapist was a lovely young woman named Stanette and she had just returned in May from four months of required training at Lush headquarters in Poole, UK.  She loves her job, she loves the company she works for and she gives you an amazing experience.  The store itself, was packed full of customers when I arrived.

There are over 900 Lush stores throughout the world (including a spa in  Liverpool, UK!), but there are only two Lush Spas in the United States where you can experience the Hard Day’s Night Treatment.  They are:

LUSH Spa Lexington, 783 Lexington Avenue, NYC

LUSH Spa Philadelphia, 1525 Walnut Street, Philadelphia

My advice to all you Beatles Freaks out there is to find the closest Lush Spa to you and schedule an appointment so you too can float away.  It is a bit pricey, but well worth it.  If you’re one of the thousands of Beatles fans that attends the Fest for Beatles Fans every year in metro New York City, you may want to make this little luxury a part of your Beatles weekend.  I’m actually looking forward to going back someday and letting my worries melt away again.

 This is a sample of all the songs that are played during this treatment. Imagine having a your hands massaged during “I Want to Hold Your Hand” and a scalp massage during “Golden Slumbers”.

I rate this Fab Four experience: 4 out of 4 Beetles!

2 Comments

Filed under Gifts, Hard Day's Night Spa Treatment, reviews

Book Review: The Beatles and Me on Tour by Ivor Davis

Ivor Davis bookI met Ivor Davis for the first time at the Chicago Fest for Beatles Fans in August.  The word most commonly used to describe Ivor was ‘charming’.  And that he was!  He won everyone over who had the privilege to meet him and take home a copy of his book.  I’ve finally gotten around to reading this book and here’s my honest review.

What an absolute delight this books is!  Refreshing and so well written, anyone can just breeze through it’s pages.  The only downside…it ends.  Ivor has spent his life as a reporter and it shows in his writing style…very easy and smooth, it’s an absolute joy to follow him along on his journey with the Beatles during their 1964 tour of America.  Ivor doesn’t bore you with HIS story…he tells the story of what was going on behind the scenes.  Readers get the inside story of the Beatles backstage, in the air, holed up in their hotel rooms like caged animals and the secret meetings and parties that went on with other stars of the time.

Without a doubt, this book is a must read and must have for any true Beatles fan.  And if you’d like to know more about Ivor and his book, you can go to his website at: www.IvorDavisBeatles.com.  There are also links to let you know where you can purchase your own copy.

And if you’re in the L.A. area, don’t miss the opportunity to meet Ivor Davis at the Fest for Beatles Fans in L.A. on October 10-12, 2014.

I rate this book: 4 out of 4 Beetles!

Leave a comment

Filed under Beatles books, George Harrison, John Lennon, Paul McCartney, reviews, Ringo Starr

Book Review: ‘Confessions of a Beatlemaniac’ by Dee Elias

'Confessions of a Beatlemaniac' by Dee Elias

‘Confessions of a Beatlemaniac’ by Dee Elias

‘Confessions of a Beatlemaniac’ by Dee Elias

I had the pleasure of meeting Dee Elias at the Fest for Beatles Fans in Chicago and finding out about her book ‘Confessions of a Beatlemaniac: A true story of a fan who broke all the rules to meet the Beatles!‘  Without even reading a word, I got the impression that Dee’s story is going to become huge among other Beatles fans.

Though this book is currently listed on Amazon.com as being for ages 10 – 18, it’s definitely a multi-generational read.  Taken from the pages of Dee’s diary when she was 14-16 years old, this book tells of the extent to which Dee, her friends and many other Beatlemaniacs would go to just to get close to the Beatles.   This is the story of how she honed her technique by managing to meet other stars like Sonny & Cher and Simon & Garfunkel.

Why did she wait so long to tell her story?  When I spoke with her at the fest, she said not only did she think no one would be interested, she also was still keeping her antics a secret from her parents 50 years later!

If you’re looking for a fun book directly from the heart of a true Beatle fan who was THERE, you’ll enjoy this quick (168 page) read.  (And you absolutely won’t want to miss the story of Dee’s encounter with Billy J. Kramer!)

This book is available for Kindle at Amazon.com.  Paperbacks are available exclusively through Dee’s website: www.ConfessionsOfABeatleManiac.com.

You can follow Dee on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/Confessionsofabeatlemaniac 

 

I rate this book: 4 out of 4 Beetles

 

 

2 Comments

Filed under Beatles books, Beatles-freak, George Harrison, John Lennon, Paul McCartney, reviews, Ringo Starr

Johnny come lately, the new kid in town…

PSU Beatles

“Everybody’s talking
There’s a new kid in town
People started walking
There’s a new kid in town” – Eagles

With the approach of the 50th Anniversary of the Beatles coming to the United States, it seems that new events, festivals and conferences are popping up everywhere to celebrate the occasion.  And though the Fest for Beatles Fans is the biggest fest around, some of the others aren’t to shabby!

One of the biggest events will be at Penn State University in Altoona, PA on the weekend of February 7-9, 2014 and is called ‘It was 50 Years Ago Today: An International Beatles Celebration.’  This three day event isn’t a festival.  It’s a conference.  According to their website, “In addition to panels and presentations, the conference will include film screenings, musical performances, art and photography exhibits, and keynote addresses by leading Beatles critics and musicologists.”

The director of this event is Dr. Kenneth Womack, the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at PSU Altoona, and the author of: Long and Winding Roads: The Evolving Artistry of the Beatles, The Cambridge Companion to the Beatles, Reading the Beatles: Cultural Studies, Literary Criticism, And the Fab Four and the soon to be released The Beatles Encyclopedia [2 volumes]: Everything Fab Four.

A few of the respected 50+ experts set to appear at this conference are:

Mark Lewisohn – regarded as  one of the world’s leading Beatles authorities, Mark is the author of the NY Times bestseller Tune In: The Beatles: All These Years, Volume 1.

Andy Babiuk – the foremost authority on the equipment used to create the Beatles’ music and the author of Beatles Gear: All the Fab Four’s Instruments from Stage to Studio.  Andy is also a staff consultant to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, OH.

Walter Everett – the author of the Beatles As Musicians book series, Mr. Everett is also a member of the School of Music faculty at the University of Michigan and the author of The Foundations of Rock.

Jude Southerland Kessler – a Beatles expert, author and host of her own radio show, Ms. Kessler is the author of the John Lennon Series.  She has spent nearly 30 years researching John Lennon and the Beatles for her 9 book series., making her a leading expert on the topic of the Fab Four.

Dr. Kit O’Toole – For over 19 years, Dr. O’Toole has written music, concert, and book reviews, interviews, popular culture essays, and technology “how to” articles.  Her work has appeared at: Blogcritics.org, Something Else Reviews, Blinded by Sound, Cinema Sentries, Seattle PI and Beatlefan magazine.

This is definitely set to be one of the most intellectual of all the Beatles events to be held in 2014!  And what’s cool about their registration is that you not only can you sign up for which days you would like to attend, you can add your meals and accommodations to your package as you like!

For more information on this conference, along with a schedule of events & presenters, and registration, check out their website: http://www.altoona.psu.edu/beatles.

Leave a comment

Filed under 50th Anniversary of the Beatles, Beatles-freak, festival, George Harrison, John Lennon, music, Paul McCartney, reviews, Ringo Starr, Show

CD Review: Beatlesque Four by Alan Bernhoft

Looks like Alan Bernhoft has done it again with his latest release, Beatlesque Four!

My last review of Beatleseque Three, Alan had begun to recover from a what I thought was a very dissappointing Beatlesque Too album.  I think I can safely say, this album is the best of the bunch.

The CD starts out with a catchy, little head-bobbing, Lennon-esque title track, Love Everyone.  This is one of those songs you can imagine every mom wanting to play for their young children.

Another memorable tune is track 9 – My Rolls Royce…a song you can imagine Ringo singing.  Everything from the limited vocal range to the silly lyrics just screams Ringo!

Track 11, I Fly is an amazing tune that really and truly highlights the talents of Alan Bernhoft.  It’s just beautiful with it’s whisp of Beatles influence but not overdone.

Included in this album are three spoken word tracks from the writings of T.S. Dorglesnout.  They’re amusing little ditties fit perfectly in amongst the songs.  Who’s T.S. Dorglesnout?  When you find out, please let me know too!  🙂

This album ends with the song, Captain Anaujiram.  Though me and the good Captain would never share company, they song is amusing!

I don’t want to leave out that Mr. Bernhoft has included a holiday tune on this album called Imagine Christmas.  I must say I’m a fan of it already since I’ve personally had enough of the same-old, same-old holiday tunes every year.  I’d love to see the song distributed to radio stations across the country and be the next big holiday song!

I’m very impressed with this album and enjoyed getting an early copy of it.  The official release date is Saturday, June 23, 2012.  You can sample and buy a digital copy on Amazon.

I rate this CD: 4 out of 4 Beetles

Leave a comment

Filed under Beatles influence, George Harrison, John Lennon, music, Paul McCartney, reviews, Ringo Starr

Song Review: “No. 6” by The Quarrymen

I just found this new song by The Quarrymen (thank you Beatles Examiner) called No. 6.  It’s the first song off their new album and features none other than May Pang!

For 99 cents, I figured it was worth it to download it from Amazon and give it a listen and all I can say is….WOW!

This song is a whole lot more than I ever expected.  Just when I thought that this was a band that was still trying to ride the tails of their predecessors, I’ve been proven wrong.  This song, though still with its nostalgic samples, is easily just as hip, chic, awesome, groovy, swag, word or whatever the kids are saying these days.

I’m anxiously awaiting the album!

Absolutely, don’t miss the opportunity to listen and own this new song.  You can download it on Amazon.com. (Don’t let the preview on Amazon fool you…it doesn’t do the song justice!)

I rate this song: 4 out of 4 Beetles

Leave a comment

Filed under Beatles influence, Beatles-freak, May Pang, music, reviews, The Quarrymen

Short Story (ebook) Review: ‘Paul McCartney’s Coat and Other Stories’ by Michael White

Paul McCartney's CoatThis holiday, I got myself a Kindle Touch…thanks to the generosity of a friend who gave me an Amazon gift card.  Wanting to put this new device to use immediately, I did a search for ‘Free books beatles’ under Kindle books.  The ebook, ‘Paul McCartney’s Coat and Other Stories’ came up first on a very short list of only 3 books.

Let me first inform my readers that only the Forward is free.  You can get a Sampler for 99 cents, but the entire book is $4.50.  So…I ended up spending $5.49, but I have now learned a valuable lesson on what not to download to my Kindle.

Now for my review of just the first short story in this ebook:

If you’re a fan of short stories and/or fan fiction, you’ll enjoy reading this tall tale about a Beatles fan having a close encounter with the Fab Four at a pub in 1967 and his short ownership of Paul McCartney’s coat that was left behind in the pub and the discovery of Julian Lennon’s drawing  of Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds!

The author, Michael White, gives a footnote at the end of the his story saying that on the original drawing by Julian, the words “Lucy with diamond eyes” were crossed out and the words, “Lucy in the sky with diamonds” were written underneath.  After doing a search on the interent, I couldn’t come up with any confirmation of this…even though it plays a huge part in telling of this story and I found it quite amusing how the author may have taken this fact and turned it into his own story!  (Note: I’d appreciate it if anyone can confirm the story about the original picture.)

The story does contain quite a lot of typos, but I’ve been told this can happen when books are converted to Kindle editions.  The reader may become impatient with several missing quote marks, run-on sentences and other small publishing errors.

Also, I guess one way to get attention for your new book is to put one of the Beatles names in the title or ‘Beatles’ itself.  It got my attention and no, I didn’t read any of the other Mr. White’s other short stories, but I now have them handy in case I find myself waiting at a dentist office or such.

This book is available in it’s full Kindle editon at Amazon.com, but is only available in it’s free edition of the Forward from Barnes and Noble.

Because this story is fan fiction (and I’m not a fan of that genre) and because I felt that the author gets sidetracked on other topics to the point of feeling like he was just adding ‘filler’ to his story:

I rate this story in this book: 2 out of 4 Beetles

Leave a comment

Filed under Beatles books, Fan Fiction, George Harrison, John Lennon, Paul McCartney, reviews, Uncategorized