Beatles Interview with Ken Dodd, 1963

So great to see the lads enjoying this bit with comedian Ken Dodd, particularly Lennon who enjoys even the most dreadful of Dodd’s jokes. Just wonderful.

Ken Dodd

Sheridan Smith as Cilla Black

The captivating trailer for new drama Cilla, starring award winning actress Sheridan Smith. Just in case you were wondering, thats actually her singing too!

Acclaimed writer Jeff Pope has penned Cilla, a three-part drama for ITV, starring Sheridan Smith as the famous Liverpudlian songbird.

Sheridan will be joined in the cast by Aneurin Barnard as Cilla’s husband Bobby, Ed Stoppard as Brian Epstein, John Henshaw as Cilla’s father, John White and Melanie Hill is Cilla’s mother.

‘Cilla’ tells of her rocky rise to fame and will capture the essence of 1960s Liverpool, the atmosphere of promise and excitement as the Merseybeat music scene was on the verge of exploding in a blaze of tight-fitting skirts, stiletto heels, and beehives.

A young, unknown Cilla works in the austere environs of the typists’ pool at a local company, dreaming of stardom. The drama looks at how she met the two men who came to love her and ultimately fought over her – future husband Bobby Willis and legendary manager Brian Epstein, the tragic young businessman who also guided the career of The Beatles.

We learn how Cilla’s burgeoning friendship with John, Paul, George and Ringo – the four young men who went on to conquer the music world – shaped her career. It was family friend Ritchie Starkey (Ringo), the teddy-boy with a greasy quiff, who help her to cross paths with Brian Epstein and producer George Martin – who were to launch her career with recording sessions at the world famous Abbey Road Studios.

The ITV Studios production will recount the dark days of her early career, her on-off relationship with Bobby, a baker at Woolworth’s with the gift of the gab, who struggled to accept Cilla’s iron determination to succeed and become a star at the expense of practically every other area of her life.

Cilla is available to watch in the US online at Acorn

The Beatles, “You Know My Name” from ‘Past Masters’ (1970): Deep Beatles

Since I began writing “Deep Beatles,” readers have challenged me to write about “You Know My Name (Look Up the Number),” one of the strangest tracks in the Beatles catalog. Never one to back down from a dare, I gladly accept the challenge! While the song can be dismissed as a throwaway or novelty, its roots can be traced back to music hall as well as the flourishing 1960s British comedy landscape. In addition, it was almost released not as a Beatles single, but as a Plastic Ono Band track.The majority of “You Know My Name” was recorded just after the Sgt. Pepper sessions. The Beatles were in a highly experimental mood musically and technically, with the recording studio becoming their artistic playground. According to Barry Miles’ Many Years From Now, John Lennon arrived at the recording studio chanting a kind of mantra: “You know my name, look up the number.” Paul McCartney told Miles that he thought the statement may have been aimed at Yoko Ono, but Lennon never verified that. “He brought it in originally as a 15-minute chant when he was in space-cadet mode,” McCartney remembered, “and we said, ‘Well, what are we going to do with this then?’ and he said, ‘It’s just like a mantra.’ So we said, ‘Okay, let’s just do it.’”

In his 1980 Playboy interview, Lennon agreed that the song was meant to be humorous, but did not suggest an Ono connection. “That was a piece of unfinished music that I turned into a comedy record with Paul. I was waiting for him in his house, and I saw the phone book was on the piano with the words, ‘You know the name, look up the number.’ It was like a logo, and I just changed it. It was going to be a Four Tops kind of song – the chord changes are like that – but it never developed and we made a joke out of it.” [ . . . ]

Read Full Story: The Beatles, “You Know My Name” from ‘Past Masters’ (1970): Deep Beatles