This week, I buried my head in The Beatles: Fifty Fabulous Years by Robert Rodriguez. Though I’ve known Robert for several years and I own a couple of his books, this is the first of them that I’ve actually sat down and read. Truth be told, I tend to shy away from my friends books when it comes to reviews. It’s really not fair to either of us.
As I’ve already alluded to, Robert is the author of several books about the Beatles. He is also the host of the very popular Something About The Beatles podcast. To call him a Beatles expert, historian, enthusiast, etc. is being simplistic at best! He is additionally a well known figure around the Fest for Beatles Fans in Chicago and New York.
The Beatles: Fifty Fabulous Years was published in 2010. I admit that when I bought it, I assumed it was from 2014 and celebrated the Beatles fifty years in America, but it’s actually starts their story in 1960 when they first acquired the name…The Beatles! It’s filled with beautiful pictures of the Fab Four, including pictures with Stuart Sutcliffe, Pete Best and Jimmy Nicol. There are also colorful pictures of posters, albums, fans, and other trending bands of the day, along with quotes and ‘Fab Facts’ in the margins on almost every page.
This is a really fun book to own. It’s larger than most books (9″x 9.5″) but not quite as a large as most coffee table books. Robert Rodriguez did a great job making this a smooth an easy read as he tells the complete story of the Beatles without getting hung up on the controversies or filling up the pages with a lot of jibber-jabber to increase his page count.
The only problem I can say I have with this book is…the DVD that’s included with it. The DVD – “Beatles – Their Golden Age” a documentary by Les Krantz was produced especially for this book. It reminded me of a lot of the free movies about the Beatles that are available on Amazon Prime. Though it does provide some never before seen footage, it’s most repetitive scenes of screaming fans and news reel footage set to somewhat annoying music that is actually recycled Beatles tunes that have been altered just enough to not get sued by Apple (My husband actually commented on the poor choice of music).
Yeah, the DVD is a bonus with the book and if you buy a used copy of the book, I would recommend you get a copy with the DVD if you’re a collector. The book, on the other hand, I would highly recommend for collectors or adults/children/teens who are new to the Beatles. As I said, it’s beautifully written without all the hype or controversy that any amateur Beatles fan can dive into later when they want to learn more about the Fab Four.
The book on it’s own, easily rates as a 4 Beetle book, but because of the amateurish work on the DVD, I’m going to have to take it down a notch. And for that reason…
I rate this book, 3 out of 4 Beetles!