This book is bound to enhance even the most die hard fans knowledge of the Fab Four, it is chock full of nuggets on every aspect of their career, legacy & the world which surrounded them.
At close to 1,200 pages, it is a book that you are unlikely to read from cover to cover, but you can get a lot of fun from dipping in & pulling out bits of Beatles information. Arranged in alphabetical order, every conceivable aspect of the band's career is covered from the stuff you would expect to see -recording sessions, albums, singles, concerts & appearances, through to much more unusual information about coffee bars from the early years, sights in Hamburg, & details of pretty much everyone associated with the Beatles.
Also included is a list of over 500 people that were associated with the group at one time - everyone from Brian Epstein to the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi is accounted for. There is some repetition but that is impossible to avoid in a book of this format, what it certainly is is exhaustive.
The layout could perhaps be better - while arranged in a logical manner, there is 1 photograph within & the text is pretty dull. But I guess you don't buy a book of this kind for visual reasons, it's a pure source of information.
Perhaps not suited to the casual fan, but it will offer something to the keen follower & the alphabetical listings make it easy to find information quickly. Recommended if you want an easy to find & thorough guide to everything associated with the Fab Four.
THE Sergeant Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band album sleeve earned its designer, Peter Blake, a paltry £200. He took Apple to court in October 1998 for back royalties from what has got to be one of the most copied images in the world. Apple commented: His contract stated that he would get a one-off payment and that was what he accepted at the time. This is just one of many nuggets of information contained in Bill Harry's excellent book that was first published in 1995 and revised and reprinted in 2000. The Beatles encyclopedia is a mine of information about the world's greatest rock band. It has nearly 1,200 pages (approximately A5 size) crammed with everything you need to know. If you're looking for a coffee table book with lots of nice photographs look somewhere else. This book contains one photograph - and that's on the front cover. The information is arranged alphabetically - from Abbey Road to Zodiac Coffee Club - and includes details of every record ever released, every song written and every gig played as well as biographies of over 500 people associated with the group. The author, Bill Harry, attended Liverpool College of Art with John Lennon and founded the Mersey Beat newspaper in Liverpool in 1961. But this is no sanitised Beatles history. Pete Best - the Beatles' original drummer - has a large write up. He is acknowledged as being the most popular Beatle with the fans in those early days. The shoddy manner in which he was dumped for the musically inferior Ringo Starr is also well covered. There is also a good piece on Stuart Sutcliffe, the original Fifth Beatle, who died in Hamburg in 1962 and whose image appeared on the Sergeant Pepper's sleeve. This is a brilliant book, and because of its alphabetical approach, the reader is able to quickly locate the bits of Beatle history they are interested in. My only criticism is that some of the anecdotes appear to be repeated under different
headings. For instance, the story behind the naming of the Casbah Club is repeated under Casbah Club and Mona Best (who founded it). But this is a very minor criticism. Overall I think the book is very good value for money at £14.99 and would recommend it to anyone interested in the Beatles. The book is currently discounted to £11.99 at www.virgin-books.com.
A-Z of everything you need to know about the Beatles.