The Beatles: An important handwritten set list by Paul McCartney and Beatles signed promotional postcard, 1963

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Lot 46
The Beatles: An important handwritten set list by Paul McCartney and Beatles signed promotional postcard, 1963

US$ 150,000 - 250,000
£ 110,000 - 180,000

Music

28 Oct 2021, 11:00 PDT

Los Angeles

The Beatles: An important handwritten set list by Paul McCartney and Beatles signed promotional postcard, 1963
A Parlophone Records publicity postcard, signed by all four Beatles in black ballpoint pen and inscribed in Paul McCartney's hand, "lots of Love Lorraine, from The Beatles," with set list verso in blue and black ballpoint pens in Paul McCartney's hand, the list of songs comprising "Saw Her Standing There"/ "Rhythm & Blues" / "Do You Wanna Know a Secret?" / "Beautiful Dreamer" / "Anna" / "Thank You Girl" / "Fool of Somebody" / "Sweet Little Sixteen" / "From Me To You" / "Long Tall Sally," the autographs and set list obtained at the Majestic Ballroom, Luton, Bedfordshire, England, April 17, 1963.
3.5 x 6 in.

Footnotes

  • This set list, and that in the preceding lot, is one of only eight Beatles set lists written by a band member known to be in existence. Six further Beatles set lists are known to exist but they are in the hands of either Road Manager Neil Aspinall or Roadie Mal Evans. Only two other Beatles set lists are accompanied by autographs from the band: one with a complete set of autographs and another signed by Ringo Starr and John Lennon on the reverse. These autographs are signed to "Lorraine," whose father drove the Beatles in Luton on the evening of April 17, 1963.

    This set list dates from nearly three years after that in the previous lot. Much had changed for the band in those intervening years. They had spent two periods of time in Hamburg honing their craft in front of a live audience, and, more importantly, after signing a management contract with Brian Epstein in January, 1962, Epstein had successfully negotiated the band a recording contract with E.M.I. in June, 1962. Two months later, they had a new drummer in the form of Ringo Starr and the band was ready for their first tour in Scotland in January, 1963.

    At the time of this performance in Luton, the Beatles were growing in popularity and stature in their native Great Britain. The evening before, their BBC television debut on The 625 Show was broadcast and the following weekend they performed at the Royal Albert Hall for the first time. The third Beatles single, "From Me to You" / "Thank You Girl" had just been released and on May 4 it became their first Number One hit single. Still, the performance at the Majestic was a standard two-sets-a-night ballroom gig.

    Four of the tracks on this set list ["I Saw Her Standing There," "Anna," "Do You Want To Know A Secret" and "From Me To You"] were included on The Beatles' debut LP Please Please Me, released only three weeks prior to this Luton gig. "(A Shot of) Rhythm And Blues" was a staple of the Beatles live set but their version wasn't released until Live At The BBC in 1994. "Beautiful Dreamer" was a song written by Stephen Foster in the Nineteenth Century and had been recorded by dozens of artists from Bing Crosby to the Ink Spots and fellow Liverpudlian Kenn Dodd. The Chuck Berry track, "Sweet Little 16" is also included and a Beatles favorite, the Little Richard track, "Long Tall Sally". "(If You Gotta Make a) Fool of Somebody," originally recorded by American R&B singer James Ray, would have sustaining impact on George Harrison as he made his version of that record's B-side, "Got My Mind Set On You," a solo hit in 1987.

    By Fall of 1963, Beatlemania was a full-blown cultural event in the U.K. and gigs like the one in Luton would fade into the past. Within a year, The Beatles became the biggest act in the world.

    Literature:
    LEWISOHN, Mark The Complete Beatles Chronicle, London: Octopus Books, 1992
    Exhibited:
    Ladies and Gentlemen...The Beatles!, The New York Library for the Performing Arts; The Grammy Museum and other locations, Traveling Exhibition, 2014-2018
Contacts
The Beatles: An important handwritten set list by Paul McCartney and Beatles signed promotional postcard, 1963
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