Beatlemania in privacy – info

Beatlemania in privacy

On September 14, 1963, “She Loves You”, the Beatles’ fourth single, reached No. 1 in the UK. The popularity of the song did not stop growing in the following weeks, and its tremendous success gave nature to that wave of excessive adoration that got the name Beatlemania. Meanwhile, in the United States, the phenomenon was followed with a mixture of curiosity and indifference, but the situation changed dramatically with the release of a new song, on November 29, I Want to Hold Your Hand, with which the Beatles stormed to the top. from the US charts on February 1, 1964, just days before landing number one in the country, appearing on The Ed Sullivan Show, and turning Beatlemania into a worldwide epidemic.

John Lennon and George Harrison portrayed by Paul McCartney.

Those three hectic months in which twenty-four days of Liverpool changed the history of the twentieth century are explained, documented, and dissected in a thousand different ways, but the 1964 picture book The Eyes of the Storm (which Leboroac Publishers will be out in Spanish on July 3) offers a hitherto unpublished look. over that period. Unpublished and incomparably significant, because the author of the images is one of the twenty-four people who unleashed chaos: Paul McCartney. The book is the lavish companion piece to an exhibition in which London’s National Portrait Gallery will reopen on June 28 after a three-year renovation. The project was launched in 2020, when nearly a thousand photographs, believed by the musician to have been lost, were found in McCartney’s archives; These are photographs taken with a Pentax 35mm camera between December 1963 and February 1964 in Liverpool, London, Paris, New York, Washington, D.C., and Miami.

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With their genuine spontaneity and imperturbability, the 250 images selected for the book and exhibition reveal the most intimate side of a group that has set out to conquer the planet. Relaxing backstage in Liverpool, Ringo Starr posing with his teammates for camera in London, John Lennon in his sailor hat in Paris, McCartney photographed in front of a hotel mirror, Fans chasing the Beatles through the streets of New York, George Harrison wearing sunglasses and shirtless in a tub Swimming in Miami Beach… Everything in the Collection tells of four kids trying to keep their cool while the world around them goes crazy.

“Who is looking at whom?”

Paul McCartney 1964. The Eyes of the Storm Leboroac 336 pages / 68 euros

In the book, McCartney wrote, “Things were so happening that I can’t say photography was among my priorities in those days.” Although we wanted to go from being a small group to a big one and craved international success, no one could have predicted what I describe here as the “eyes of the storm”. […] In the plural, because in addition to the pictures I took, there were those that the press took of us and also the eyes of the fans who were watching us and those of the security personnel who were watching us. Who is looking at whom?

Reviewing this “family photo album”, McCartney recalls with particular fondness the eight days in February 1964 the group spent in Miami, where the Beatles recorded their second appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show and where they had time to bathe in the Atlantic Ocean and sunbathe after the cold, snow and hustle and bustle of the New York and Washington, D.C., it was like a mini vacation. Paul says: “The righteous life.” To document it, the musician changed the black and white reels he had been using until then for color. “I’m not surprised that when we got to Miami the pictures started to color, because all of a sudden we were in Wonderland,” he says.

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The good life was short-lived. Immediately after returning from the United States, the Beatles began recording songs for their third LP, A Hard Day’s Night, and filming a film of the same title, while preparing for their first world tour. The revolution was already unstoppable and demanded all of his dedication. McCartney closed the camera and the pictures of those amazing three months were forgotten in a drawer. Now they are re-emerging, transformed into frank testimony of a cultural epic of unimaginable scope.

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