14 June 2022
I’m looking for new books about The Beatles. (I’ve only had…2 books, The Beatles : Get Back and a french book, “Les Beatles, 4 garçons dans le siècle” by Frédéric Granier) and I wondered why Brian Epstein’s book, A Cellarful of Noise was not more highlighted. Since it’s written by Epstein himself, I imagined it must be a very good book to understand what it was like at that time. But I have a doubt, as I rarely see it mentioned !
What is your opinion about this book ?
11 June 2015
@Pennys Poppies This book and most of the others discussed on the forum are available to “borrow” at the various online digital libraries. The one I use is called the Internet Archive. They have millions of books, videos, and recordings available. To borrow a book you need to open an account with an email address and a password. In 2 years they have only sent me 4 or 5 emails (mostly regarding lawsuits – the big publishing firms do not believe the same rules that apply to hardcopy libraries should apply to digital ones). The address is https://archive.org/ Even if you like to own something for your collection, you can at the least read a few chapters and decide if it’s in your tree.
The following people thank sigh butterfly for this post:Pennys Poppies, Rube
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14 June 2022
17 December 2012
First thing to clear up, @Pennys Poppies, is that the book wasn’t written by Brian, but was rather ghostwritten by his assistant, Derek Taylor (who had a long association with the Beatles, and books about them).
It was based on interviews Derek did with Brian, and is a pleasant enough piece of PR, but little more. It was flawed because there was so much that couldn’t be mentioned, such as Brian’s homosexuality (it was still illegal in the UK and many other countries), or wouldn’t be mentioned because it contradicted the image of the group at the time, such as what their time in Hamburg was really like, their drug use, and their casual sexual encounters. It dares not tell the real story of those early years.
Hunter Davies’ 1968 Authorised Biography got closer to the truth, but there was still a lot that couldn’t be said. It remains probably the most important of the “period” books.
Michael Braun’s rare Love Me Do ! The Beatles Progress is a much better portrait of the early Beatles than A Cellerful of Noise, but is hard to find.
The Beatles Book Monthly, which can be found online, is also one of the great resources, and clearly shows how the way they portrayed themselves to the public over those years changed.
But Brian’s book isn’t highly regarded as a document about their early years because it is so anodyne.
The following people thank Ron Nasty for this post:Pennys Poppies, Beatlebug, sigh butterfly, Rube
"I only said we were bigger than Rod... and now there's all this!" Ron Nasty
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The Beatles Bible 2020 non-Canon Poll Part One: 1958-1963 and Part Two: 1964-August 1966