Wednesday, April 12, 2017

ES-Say #90 Vinyl Gone Wild-DeAgostini Magazine Re-Issued LPs

Hello Peeps! Once again, it's time for another exciting episode of  "Not Saying Anything To Paul McCartney"- the blog that has never said anything to Paul McCartney since 2015!

Happy Easter and Happy Passover! April is a busy month of holidays and what's better way to relax and unwind than to read about collecting Beatles vinyl?!?!? My collection is now growing and I want to explain why I'm running out of room this month to store my "new" vinyl!

Actually, all the vinyl I want to talk about are reissues. none of them are actually new but newly re-released for 2017. The craze of owning new reissued vinyl usually makes me feel ill. Why should I be paying £16.99 for an album I could find a similar, older copy for £5? However, I recently bought a new budget priced record player and then I got suckered into the world of DeAgostini.

What is DeAgostini? Well, even the people who are selling UK magazines from the "leading partwork publisher" are giving me blank stares. I might not be able to pronounce the company name, but when I described exactly which of their magazines I was looking for (A vinyl copy of "Help!" by The Beatles) at a leading uk magazine chain, it took fifteen minutes to get a reply that it would be available the next day. Nevermind that DeAgostini magazines ranging from piece-by-piece model making to mostly re-reissued 2009 Beatles albums takes up a lot of noticeable large shelf space in a store. However, you would think that the potential ridiculous revenue a store could get from people addicted to the laughable amount of bi-weekly DeAgostini issues might warrant some general employee knowledge.

Or not. Who cares? Apparently, now I have become one of DeAgostini's Biotches, I care way too much about stores getting in my re-reissued vinyl. Previously, I had decided not to purchase the 2009 Beatles RE-Issues(that's one "re"). These have been available from HMV for prices that seem to slightly more from what DeAgostini is asking. (£9.99 for a copy of "Abbey Road" from DeAgostini seems more justifiable than possibly $8-£10 more from HMV. The same goes for the further new issue albums priced from £16.99-£30+, still cheaper than other retail outlets).

But, saying all that about saving money, with 23 issues to collect bi-weekly, that's going to cost hundreds of pounds! But, since your paying in these handy instalments, you forget what the actual total is going to be. So, since I keep denying that I actually am one of their Biotches, I have come up with a cost-efficient plan...

My Cheepo Plan

Rule One: Do not buy so many double albums and don't buy any triple albums.
Rule Two: Do not subscribe directly to the company to receive very lame-o free gifts.
Rule Three: Purchase what you feel you need to avoid running out of more storage space.

It's that simple- my plan maybe a bit "anal-retentive" and cutting some corners, but it's my money and this is what I want to spend it on. I'd like to have a collection of Beatles vinyl that I can listen to. This is a new concept to me of playing the vinyl and not caring about keeping it sealed and untouched. It could be considered of some interest since the records have DeAgostini credits on the back covers and record labels of the vinyl. (They can easily be told apart from the original 2009 re-issues). I can't tell you if the 180g vinyl is something exclusive(didn't do the research, I still don't understand why 180g weighted vinyl is so wonderful and my record player is pretty basic for sound).

Anyway, here's what I will be harassing retail workers for in the upcoming DeAgostini bi-weekly schedule with a brief reason why I want it.

1. Abbey Road- It's Abbey Road
2. Sgt Pepper- Same As Above
3. Help!- See Above
4. The White Album- See Above
5. Rubber Sole- As mentioned previously
6. Magical Mystery Tour- Coo Coo Ca-Choo
7. Beatles For Sale- Yes, I'm buying some Beatles albums...
8. A Hard Day's Night- whatever I said about this...can't remember
9. With The Beatles- includes an album by The Beatles...duh
10. Revolver- It's Revolver
11. Let It Be- next to last LP contains "Let It be"
12. The Beatles Past Masters- whatever was missing
13. Please Please Me- all together now- It's "Please Please Me"

So, I have ignored ten other releases. Firstly, there's my Yellow Submarine problems(don't ask). Secondly, why do I need the Cirque Du Soleil Lp? I've listened to the CD once. Thirdly, well everything else I'd rather hope I have on a CD, because I really don't want to listen to demos, unreleased tracks, alternate takes, etc on vinyl.

The struggle is real. Did you know that Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band is being re-re-re-something-released for the 50th Anniversary? The vinyl copy? yeah, I'm going to Carnival of Light anyway but that type of a song doesn't make my "cut" for playing vinyl at home(it's an unreleased track).

Thanks DeAgostini, I should have chosen to build a Starship Enterprise piece-by-piece instead... 



Saturday, March 25, 2017

ES-Say #89 Put It There On A Single Disc-McCartney's "Flowers" Re-Issue
                                         Picking Up "Flowers In Dirt" After A Long Neglect 
On March 24th, The Paul McCartney Archive Collection, an on-going series of solo career album re-releases, released 1989's "Flowers In The Dirt"(Remaster, 2017, UMD). Since losing my Japanese CD version of the album at least a decade ago, I was pleased to be buying the updated version. I think it's unique because it was a change of direction for Paul, whom in 1989 hadn't toured majorly for at least a decade, and finally had a strong-enough, current-sounding album to return to the "road" with.

Fortunately, the type of late 1980s/early 1990s Popular Music Paul McCartney got caught up with was considered to be MOR AC(Middle Of The Road/Adult Contemporary) Billboard-Charting Hits. This was a time when it was not embarrassing to own an album from an artist that was over the age of 35. That's right, middle-aged artists were releasing AC albums that were crossing over to the Top 40. Can you remember who went on to win 1991's Grammy for Record Of The Year taken from their 1989 LP? A very socially conscious, famously ugly Phil Collins nabbed the accolade and suddenly was coming up roses in his late-30s. Paul McCartney was his senior at 46, when releasing Flowers in June of 1989. By all accounts, it was a highly-rated album and made some notable impact on the charts. (Press To Play, McCartney's 1986 album re-entered the charts during the new '89 release).

Along with the middle-aged artists becoming trendy, the sound of the music was styled in maturely written lyrics and light rock, soft jazz way. Flowers In The Dirt checks all these boxes and possibly was the beginning of a change of tune for McCartney. Just as his 1980s output could be considered too self-involved, but experimental as many of the solo releases from 82-88 were, Flowers began a new chapter. He left the 80s sound behind by with a little help from his friend Elvis Costello, another artist expertly riding the new AC wave. But, maybe this collaboration was better on paper, and not how it turned out?

I'll try to explain. Firstly, not unsurprisingly, I got vital(or Vinyl) issues to discuss about this 2017 re-release. It had been available in several formats-Deluxe, Special and Vinyl.

Once again, I have chosen the cheapest edition-(2-CD Special) to review. I had ordered it from Amazon which automatically made it available for Streaming on my Amazon Music App. Before the postman delivered my physical copy that evening, I was able to listen on my phone on the way to work. While I was first listening to the beginning of the album, I suddenly started cursing out loud on the bus- "What The Hell- It's skipping songs!". My "Streaming Service" played the first four songs in order and then I realised I was listening to one of the album demos that would be found on the second, not first,  physical CD. I planned to avoid listening to any demos until I was done listening to the studio album. I had only retained a copy of my original Japanese bonus disc, so I really had waited years to properly own the album again.

My interest in low cost, subscription-free streaming was biting me in the butt. Despite being entitled to a streaming copy, I obvious hadn't paid enough to Amazon to get a bologna-free-playback-of-said-Macca-album. Getting home in the evening, I ripped off the physical CDs plastic and was confused as to why the CD Booklet was stapled to the inside of the front cardboard case. (Shouldn't this be removable and the last page not glued to it?). Checking my other Archive re-releases, all of those booklets, sans some inserts, were released in the same way. (I must not be listening to this collection physically enough *slaps self*). Anyway, I did listen to it completely through a Blu-ray player, but ironically, I mentally had opinions about the album and songs while skipping through tracks during a long bus ride the next day.

What's good and what isn't? Revisiting the album, I'm quite dead set on what my favorite songs are and which "tracks"(or "album cuts," had I shelled out £30 for the re-issue LPs) don't do anything for me. Basically, I wish the album had been released like this:

My Brave Face
Rough Ride
We Got Married
Put It There
Figure of Eight
This One
That Day Is Done
How Many People

This mix of songs checks all these nostalgic boxes for me when I too was caught up in the AC 90s craze that McCartney embraced. So, Elvis Costello was involved? He co-wrote songs, influenced the sound on the album(two heads are always better than one!). Well, I'm a little slow when it comes to two great musicians bouncing ideas off each other. There are lyrics in "My Brave Face" that either Elvis Costello wrote directly or Paul McCartney equally tried to sound-like Elvis Costello singing the lyric. For example Paul singing-

"Ever since you went away
I've had this sentimental inclination
Not to change a single thing
As I pull the sheet back on the bed,
I want to go bury my head
In your pillow"

Published by
Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

As far as I can think, with my knowledge of a handful of Costello songs and not enough to give a winning sound-a-like example, to me, THAT IS THE ELVIS COSTELLO BRANDING and it's stamped around the entire album depending if you are a Costello fan looking out for it. The Costello/McCartney duet on "You Want Her Too" is one of those songs that either wasn't going the duet route or probably has a demo that either better or wor-

Wait, hold on there is a demo of "You Want He Too" which democratically has both artists SHARING the lyric of the song in a acoustic version. Yeah, it's better. McCartney always has a presidential veto to use in this democracy due to being the English Head of State of all popular music. "Elvis won't really mind if I release the song with the sound of a Carnival playing in the beginning of the song...and maybe again with a big band!" (Of course not, as the 1985 b-side song repeatedly overstates "Well, It's MY Carnival, It's a lovely day"). To me, the left over 80s Me mentality was too strong to give up fully on this album. In other words, Costello is present on the album to assist McCartney in his eventual comeback.

This was the comeback album, plain and simple, but it wasn't a 50/50 Lennon/McCartney effort(let's go 80/20, 20% is more than enough for Costello's contribution). It was right for the time yet missing the praise that a 2017 retrospective will now highlight Costello's signature gems with McCartney's dominate style of "lets kick-some-ass rock and roll razzmatazz". It paved the way for McCartney's 90s releases, which made me a solo fan to begin with. If McCartney is truly selfish, I think it only hurts him when he doesn't utilize any support when working with other "adult contemporary" peers.



Sunday, January 29, 2017

ES-Say #88 Beware My Love! Men Are Selling Vinyl! Part 2
                              Successful Beatle finds at VIP Events 

In ES-Say #87 Part 1, I explained a bit about attending record shows and not being male. I do not want to be offensive but it's obvious that the majority of the patrons and sellers are male. So what? I can only speak for myself and I do have to be prepared for a bit criticism. However, it's not offensive to remind people that some women a) buy vinyl, and b) on a regular basis.

Chances are if anyone goes to a record show, they aren't there by mistake. Twenty years have taught me a lot and I'm there to mingle in and get my stuff and leave. I really can't keep stopping to remind people I'm a customer first. So, I'm going to talk about what I bought this weekend and how I got to save £25. These are not secrets- it could be my charm or dumb luck. The kind of non-sexist luck of a dealer just wanting to get rid of stuff and willing to bargain prices down with anyone. At the heart of this, it's a business and I can let some attitudes slide. (That's some, not all!)

Let's begin. I was looking forward to attending Saturday's record show for a few months now. I hadn't had time or money during the holiday season, so for my first show of the year, I budgeted for £60 including the entry fee. I've learned that a budget keeps you focused and worry-free for spending money on something implusive. I also prepared by dressing appropriately.

No, not warmly, appropriately for the event. Layered clothing, casual trainers and a strong bag sized to fit 12" records. On this occasion, I used a bag with a non-Beatles logo. Yes, I wanted these dealers to think I was trying to buy nothing Beatles related. Why? It a whole other topic, but boils down to not being "Help!(ed)" into buying Beatles records.

This time, when I arrived, I dropped £15 in five minutes at one table containing bins of £3-£5 vinyl. I bought McCartney II and RAM because the sleeves looked to be in good condition and I planned on playing them on my new record player. I wasn't planning on collecting these copies. I also found a UK copy of Flowers In The Dirt with the lyrics sheet(below).

These McCartney albums are standard releases but I also found a K-Tel release that was £3 and made me so happy to find! Not only did it contain 40 songs(2 LPs) but it had a magazine in it! Why aren't you jumping up and down with me! It contains My Bonnie by "Beatles With Tony Sheridan"! And...It's a "Limited Collector Edition" (It says so on the back cover!). Seriously, I don't think it's worth much, but I like that it's a Story Of Pop magazine promotional tie-in to get readership in 1973.

 I think it's got the wrong copy of the advertised magazine enclosed but I loved the mix of songs on it. I might be more thrilled that "The Knife" by Genesis is included("Tony Sheridan with The Beatles" songs are featured on many old LP releases due to being separated from The Beatles song catalogue and therefore was easier to obtain*)
Part 6 of the "Radio One" Story Of Pop included in the German K-Tel release

I moved along in the rows of rectangular tables to a box that said "All books- 1/2 price" but when I saw a "Beatles For Sale On Parlophone Records"(2011) outside of this box for £40, I wanted it. "Is this book half price? This sign says "All Books". A couple of chuckles later between the "men talking", I got a reply of "Yeah, OK!" A Harty Har Har from me, and I handed over £20. Tony Barrow wrote the forward for this book, but I was more interested in this as a reference book. It's quite nice.

I only got two 45s Picture Sleeves but I was happy to find the European releases. The first was a German copy of "Paperback Writer"(1966) in which after I paid £10, the seller and a tall odd fellow discussed my purchase and how wonderful a release it was. I interrupted and said "thanks, I'll consider that a complement" and I walked on.

Finally, I bought a French 45 PS of Wings "Let 'em In" (1976). It was £8 but I asked "Would you go £5?" when I got the seller's attention. He looked like he was going to say "No, I'm sorry" but then I pulled out the "Kermit-The-Frog-Finished-His-Song-And-Dance" smile (yeah, very very wide....) and got the discount.

I left with £5 from the original £60, but I felt it was a good group of items despite not buying any DVDs or CDs. When I got home, The Foot asked "Did you get any of that record that you have 15 copies of?"

He was talking about my Goodnight Tonight 45 LP collection. He was dead serious, I just had to laugh but answer honestly- "No, Sweetheart- I completely forgot but didn't find anything to add."

I think I'll take a break from buying records in person. Watch out, eBay....

Flowers In The Dirt will be re-release in March. In the spring, we will be reviewing the review and blogging about Liverpool. A magical mystery time will be had by all...Men, Women, Girls, Boys, Old Men, Old Women, sarcastic women, sarcastic men, Vegans and whomever else reads this blog. 

* Song Copyright laws and record labels discussions are long-winded including the discussion of these six tracks. BTW, Paul has recently been in the news for walking down the street, clearly more important than lawsuits with winning back song rights....

ES-Say #87 Beware My Love! Men are selling vinyl! Part 1
Record shows. You know, the place to find LPs, CDs, WAGs...Wait, what? No, this isn't a Football crowd, but similarly you can find "Wives and Girlfriends" at a record show. Some of them are interested in making purchases and some of them couldn't care less. Similarly, my husband, The Foot, wants to leave immediately everytime we "accidentally" stumple into a vinyl shop. (This is why I fly solo at record shows, but I can't get The Foot to tag along to what is basically a "record expo"). C'est La Vie.

Do women go by themselves to record shows? Of course, I do, but how can I explain this? How about in song!
"Oh....there's way too many men it here. Are they selling beer?"

Oh..never mind. I mean, the chance of me taking my sweet time in the Ladies room is extremely high because nobody's queuing. I decided to attend a VIP Events show this time, but my experiences are usually the same despite the organisers. I've worked out that I've been attending various record shows for twenty years in both America and Britain. Maybe I had a chip on my shoulder this time to really take the time to pay attention(and evesdrop) around the public and record dealers. But, I found it equally humourous and irritating. Here's a sample-

Young Woman to a Middle Aged Man- "What are you going to buy at the record show?"
Response(not paying attention) "Nothing, Really..."

Me(thinking): Bull&+#* !!! Everyone knows they came here to spend money. And we're waiting outside in the freezing cold to get in...Try again!

"Hey Nick, I've got some great stuff I saved for you here!"

Me(thinking): well these last 20 years have been wasted....I can't even network to get a "secret stash" from a retail music shop aka "Fred's Vinyl and Tape World"(free publicity if this is a real store).

I even heard a dealer tell an American couple about the great English saying "behind every great man is a woman". Yes, it's rude for me to be sticking this in a blog but I have to disagree and say this man was trying to butter these people up. I've lived here for nearly a decade and a "Great English Saying" happened where I was standing-

Me(looking in a £2 box and reading the LP track listing of "Business As Usual" by Men At Work).
Dealer: "Alright, Sweetheart..You look perplexed!"
Me: (dryly) "No, definitely not perplexed."

Exit stage left with my remaining £15...

Join us for part two, in which we talk about all the money I spent for my McCartney and Beatles collection before I was left with £15! It will contain photos and it may contain various nuts. So unless you have any allergies, it should be ok to skip over to part two! 

Monday, January 2, 2017

ES-Say #86 Jolly Holiday Planning To Liverpool(Yes, Really!).
          A Scarily Accurate Clip Art Drawing Resembling MaccaMeri, NSATPM Webmaster(above).

Since earlier this year, I have been scheduling a trip to Liverpool. Liverpool, England- the place where "The Paul McCartney" was born and bred, and the place responsible for spawning "The Mersey Beat." Had Liverpool not existed, "Rocky Racoon" my old cat in Brooklyn, would be nameless and crying for a better name than "get-off-my-bed." I don't know how else to emphasize how this visit is beyond comprehension. How could I be so luckly?

I must have thought the same feeling of disbelief when I crossed Abbey Road in London for the first time, but all I can remember is excitement. Happy anticipation to be crossing the zebra crossing while holding open a Union Jack umbrella. I even think the fact I was standing in London was a dream in itself. Being in a place that felt comfortable and familiar, bla bla bla....never have this feeling again...bla bla bla...(more bragging)...bla bla bla...THIS IS AMAZING! YES, I'M AN AMERICAN!

But, hold on- my first crossing at Abbey Road was about 13 years ago. I think I've been back twice in all that time and the feeling of "WOW, MAN" has been replaced with "TOURISTS-AGAIN!" I can see that my urban experiences with encountering Beatles tourists has become a battle of learning to share. The significance of Abbey Road can not be just about myself being an anglophile as it will always be a busy tourist attraction. But, I forgot I was a tourist during the first visit as it was raining that day, and if any other fans were there, I blocked them out and I had a good time umbrella twirling.

I was also in my late 20s, and since then I have grown to be a blogger with 20 more years experience of collecting and reviewing the music of The Beatles and Paul McCartney. I want to visit Liverpool but I don't know if I can handle it. This trip will either be a turning point or nothing will change. I have no idea how to approach my writing about this topic- Girl dreams of Liverpool for decades and some other tourist ruins trip by saying "Did you know...", "your not really a Beatles fan because you didn't visit...", "I used to sleep with..", "Are you a Paul McCartney Fan...", "EVERYONE SAY BEATLES!!!!!!".

I want to avoid paying money for a shared experience with fans. At Abbey Road, It doesn't cost the amount of money it costs for me to travel to Liverpool. Hotels, Food, Transport, Admission Tickets, Private Tour Guide(yep, that's what I'm paying for-no extra stranger tourists) have to be sorted. I will only be going for a few days but I want to try to do some local things as well as the tourist destinations.

The weirdest thing about this trip is probably that I'm dragging(literally) "The Foot"* around with me the whole time, because we made a "deal"** about him attending this "pilgrimage." Another strange thing is that I have been stressing about luggage and toiletries. New suitcase and travel sized items to go in the unofficial "Paul McCartney Washbag." Yes, I bought a clear plastic washbag and stuck a concert photo picture of Paul inside to remind me that this trip is happening, so I need to get in the spirit of packing for it.

I've neglected to mention I have no transport to Liverpool; have not booked the seats. I guess I'm hitch hiking but that's a terrible image. I have at least taken the days off from work and took an extra day off to prepare to leave for Mecca, the day after. I'm shifting gears and now want to stop thinking about the actual trip. Will it be a lovely experience, a bunch of hype, a writing experience or a tourist nightmare?

I'm hoping for a little of all those things...maybe I'll even hug a tourist. But, let's not forget that I can return another time. The option to even do so, is a dream for me in itself. I hope for the best, for the best place for rock and roll music history can not be a negative experience, can it?

Do you like this blog? Can you believe we will be going to Liverpool? Do you want to get updates of when the blog has new ES-Says? Never fear- our Facebook Not Saying Anything To Paul McCartney Blog "Fun Club" Group and Twitter feed(as seen on the blog) will have those updates. Also, why not check out the latest Paul news that we post? Why Not? It's free to join!***

 *significant other who dislikes The Beatles and wants to flambe Paul(probably just my collection).
**do not ruin this trip and I will not ruin another vacation to your chosen destination.
*** I do post more regular stuff. This blog gets about two entries a month, so the FB group is worth a look. 

Saturday, November 19, 2016

ES-Say #85 Status Unknown-"Easter Eggs" in Ron Howard's Beatles Bio DVD.  
Can't Practice My Spanish- Lo Es Huevo De Pascua Ademas?

Hello, Bonjour, and Guten Tag! I went to HMV today and picked up the 2-disc DVD special edition of "Eight Days A Week-The Touring Years." Upon looking at the special Blu-Ray copy, I left it behind as I could see that for about £5 cheaper, the DVD would include all the Special Features found on disc two. (This left extra money to get a discounted and impulse buy of a Beatles paperback which seems to go well with my Cilla Black account of all things involving the 50s & 60s Liverpool Scene.)

So, as you might have guessed, I'm already fired up about this DVD during my unboxing and actual watching of Disc 2. Disc 1, I will leave for another day to gripe about but for now, I've got some things to discuss here.

Why don't we do it in bullet point form? GREAT!

  • Unboxing- This movie has had gained a bit of attention for having questionable advertising designs(in the beginning many thought it was a temporary Amazon design that would be changed, and it wasn't). It's in a cardboard digit-pack and it's spine and box will get creased or bent overtime. The initial design hasn't be expanded too noticeably. What really was depressing was the advertised "64-Page Booklet" inside. The black and white only pictures aren't that great. Some have a blurry or grainy feel and only a few are really worth a view for more than a second. Maybe I need to buy another Beatles related coffee table book, because this "64-Page Booklet" won't be all. 

  • The bonus disc starts(see photo above) with the obligatory language menu. Apparently, all the budget for this mammoth film can only provide three language options despite the heavy emphasis of the band being a "global phenomenon." Maybe, I want to listen to it in Spanish? Maybe I have the wrong international copy? I will never know....

  •  "Easter Eggs" is probably a thing of the past. Why hide extra content when you can just put out a bonus disc? I must be really old school because I started wondering what website had all the cheating codes that would unlock the full Shea Stadium footage that was shown in theatres.

  • I'VE GOT BLISTERS ON MY EYES- again, a major visual problem I had in the theatre. I have astigmatism and I need to update my glasses prescription because this movie is forcing my eyes to switch from still and motion picture, film colorization, black and white images, and other image trickery. This would be fine if the visuals stuck with one medium or waited a beat before trying to express the view of "mania". I get it. The Beatles Experience feels like a fairground ride that's constantly changing. There's no reason to create DVD chapter changes with whatever bright and blinding light that they decided to alter my lenses within the first two bonus sections(it happened with "Tomorrow Never Know" playing).

  • The Bonus Material started to improve half-way through- Yes, I did learn some good things about the Beatles beginnings and music contributions in the first two featurettes, but I was waiting for the 12 Mins of Uncut Performances which turned out to be as good as watching edited You Tube Clips(there was some obvious skips in the footage, maybe the extra £5 of the Blu-Ray might have corrected it...). After that, I thought it would get into repetitive material. Actually, it was refreshing listening to one-time Beatles Manager Allan Williams(despite the English-Subtitles of his audio. My eyes might be a bit dodgy, but I heard everything he said including "Pig Sh%T"(??) which was also subtitled for the audience).
  • These 45-mins were more interesting and had a better mix of the American/British/Australian/Japanese accounts. Hooray for Ronnie Spector and Beryl Williams, because it was totally looking like the women interviewed were all going to give the "Fangirl" perspective(not that there's anything wrong with this, but there had to be some more balance of the content from a gender perspective.).

  • The Film- Ok, I sort of lied a bit at the start of ES-Say #85. I did put disc 1 in, and like a schmuck, I went right into the chapter selections* and went to the very end when the credits roll on top of "I've Got A Feeling." I fast-forwarded with fingers-crossed(while thinking "Shea Stadium, Shea Stadium, come on!"). Nope, film ended after the credits. Time to dig out one of my "questionable DVD recordings"* and calm down because it wasn't really going to be an Easter Egg finding opportunity.
Or was it? I'm afraid I don't have the contacts who would know these things. Do you?

And so we come to the end of another ES-Say of NOT SAYING ANYTHING TO PAUL McCARTNEY. Tune in next week when you'll hear Nurse Meri*
saaaay- "New Wings Jewellery?- $100?- WHAT THE "$%!"

*again, another rush job with the discs
*Rhymes with "Ootlegs"
*G-D I love The Muppet Show...

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

ES-Say #84 "I Don't Want To Live With A LEGO Submarine...(A LEGO Submarine...A LEGO Submarine)"
Why do a bunch of these plastic toy bricks cost as much as a week of supermarket food?

Last week, the popular toy company, LEGO, released a playset for Yellow Submarine. Yes, you can pick up a handful of yellow LEGOs and build your very own authentic-looking "Yellow Submarine," as made popular in the same-titled Beatles cartoon film release in 1968. Not only that, but included are inspired LEGO men psychedelic renditions of all four Beatles!! If this is appealing for you, I am happy that this makes you happy.

It does not make me happy. The cost is only one reason. Unless I can build my own life-sized version of  Paul McCartney(anatomically correct, of course...), I am not paying £70(Amazon listed price). I won't pay £50 directly from LEGO either. I tried to forget all about the toy model set because I don't even want it. The Foot, our blog's famous nemesis, assumes I want it for the Holidays, and has been not-so-secretly trying to comparison shop. If The Foot ever decides to read this ES-Say(doubtful), he will probably put his credit card away.

I think it's fair to say, that Beatles fans have likes and dislikes concerning the band's history. For example- Yoko Ono: not all fans thinks she's the bees knees. I think if you are fan who loves anything related to the Beatles, no matter what it is, then my opinion will be difficult to understand or except(LOOK AWAY NOW!). I have very little interest in the Yellow Submarine(1968) film, so I don't want to be staring daily at a LEGO version of the vessel. Especially, since I could spend £70 on something I actually want. (That's right, a life-sized-anatomically-correct-plastic version of  Paul McCartney. I value your attention to detail!)

When I was aged 11, waaay back in the 1980s, I spent a couple weeks during the summer, at sleepaway camp. Unbelievably, my camp counsellors decided to have an all-night movie marathon with us. I remember this evening, decades later, because aside from the childhood banter of how Full House was the best new television show, and everyone singing along to George Michael videos(seriously...) that we got to watch on a wheeled-in-television-VCR-combo, something different made it's way on to the screen. At 3am, someone though that older children should be watching a cartoon from 1968. Yup, I fell asleep watching Yellow Submarine for the first time and it wasn't only because it was after midnight.

I'm not a huge fan of cartoon films. I cried my eyes out in the cinema when some mouse lost her children in the Secret Of Nymh(1982), and my mother was wisely advised to take me to live-action films from that point on.  I love cinema, don't get me wrong, but I can't commit to an animated film that isn't a Walt Disney production. Many non-Disney-type-companies lack the budget to produce high-quality films. I'm not suggesting that the Yellow Submarine film was poorly made, but the intended late 1960s audience for this film probably doesn't remember anything about the film when they first saw it. (It was the 1960s after all). I wasn't smoking anything the night I watched it, but I had the comparative feeling of being intoxicated due to overtiredness and elation of looking at George Michael's rear end. I remember the cartoon version of the Beatles looking like colourful stick figures. Mostly, I have an image of Lennon standing alone with a blank white screen in the background. I don't remember songs, Blue Meanies, or much else. I wasn't impressed and fell asleep in my sleeping bag, with my neck hurting from looking up at the screen from the floor.

Is it unfair for myself to judge a film dismissively without watching it completely? Sure it is, but there are films that I haven't decided to watch based on not liking the previews or reviews. What I'm probably missing is listening to the film soundtrack, within a movie. Call me closed minded, but I prefer listening to the films songs and imagining my own interpretation of images associated to the music. I'm even happy to burst into singing "Yellow Submarine," but I'm appreciating Ringo's vocals along with the music and not much else. I might even be afraid to burst my preference to the soundtrack by watching the associated animated feature. Clips of The Beatles Saturday morning cartoon program(1965-1967) that I've seen haven't spoiled classic Beatles songs for me, but that could be because that is concerned with promoting "Beatlemania." How could I possibly be turned off to the 60s culture of Beatlemania- I love all of it.
I have seen a few clips recently from "Yellow Submarine" and maybe it's a more mature level of the Beatles contributions to media arts, but I'm just not interested. I'd prefer to watch any other of The Beatles films on repeat and mostly due to the fact I can appreciate those moments.

At the very least, I won't have spent wasted time trying to assemble a themed LEGOs set that I would have been more receptive to putting together when I was 11. (or not, I think I made up my mind about this film a long time ago.)

Now that I know The Foot might get this set for Christmas for me, I need to figure out what store credit could be exchanged for. If I can get some plain flesh colour bricks and construct a Paul McCartney I could be comfortable spending hours designing...nevermind!

Can't get enough of this blog? Are you ok with a personal choice to not give a rat's behind about the Yellow Submarine film? Please check addition ES-Say's to join our updates on Twitter and Facebook. Sometimes they are updated more frequently then this blog but are always open to hearing what you don't like in The Beatles Universe.