I’ve just finished what I can safely say is one of the most enjoyable and informative books I’ve ever read. It’s not a particularly new work – in fact it came out in 2013. I cannot recall another book which compares with its fantastic wealth of information and detail. The Beatles: All These Years: Vol 1 – Tune In is a long book at about 800 pages; and Volume 1 only takes us as far as the beginning of 1963. The rest of the story will occupy two further volumes and is intended to complete the entire story of the Beatles.
Fo me simply to rave about the vast amount of info between this book’s covers is to do the work an injustice . The writer, Beatles expert Mark Lewisohn, has accurately captured the spirit of the era (the 1950s and early 60s – from when John and Paul first met to the earliest chart successes of The Beatles as a group). Reading Lewisohn’s work not only took me back to an era I just about remember – he also evokes the unique “feel” of post-war Liverpool, the stamping-ground of John, Paul, George and Ringo.
The author scotches several myths: for example, how Parlophone’s George Martin came to record the Beatles when every other label had turned them down; and the truth behind the sacking of Pete Best. At last, these stories begin to make sense, thanks to the writer’s extensive investigations – (which I imagine must have taken years).