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Old Jun 02, 2016, 05:31 AM   #1
Apple Scruff
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Join Date: Oct 21, 2009
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Default My list of Essential Beatle Books

I started a project to set out to compile a comprehensive list of highly regarded books i.e where there seems to be a majority of positive feedback about a particular book.

I then put them into four categories:

Original Sources (First hand accounts)

Admittedly the books I listed in "Original Sources" are not necessarily all good books or well regarded (although most of them are) but they are without doubt all written from first hand perspectives which adds some importance to them.

I also did a fifth category for books which seem to get some praise but where I haven't been able to establish if they are worthy for inclusion in the main categories. I plan to keep updating as I find more good books so of course it's not definitive.....yet. I will also work my way through the comments on these forums to get more feedback about books.

Here is the list:

  • The Beatles: The BBC Archives: 1962-1970 by Kevin Howlett
  • Way Beyond Compare: The Beatles' Recorded Legacy, Volume One, 1957-1965 by John C. Winn
  • That Magic Feeling: The Beatles' Recorded Legacy, Volume Two, 1966-1970: by John C. Winn
  • "Beatles" Gear: All the Fab Four's Instruments from Stage to Studio by Andy Babiuk
  • Revolution in the Head: The Beatles' Records and the Sixties by Ian MacDonald
  • The Complete "Beatles" Chronicle by Mark Lewisohn
  • The Complete Beatles Recording Sessions: The Official Story Abbey Road 1962 - 1970 by Mark Lewisohn
  • Tell Me Why: The Beatles: Album By Album, Song By Song, The Sixties And After by Tim Riley
  • The Beatles' Story on Capitol Records, Part One: Beatlemania and the Singles by Bruce Spizer
  • The Beatles' Story on Capitol Records, Part Two: The Albums by Bruce Spizer
  • Beatles for Sale on Parlophone Records by Bruce Spizer
  • The Beatles on Vee-Jay by Bruce Spizer
  • Beatles on Apple Records by Bruce Spizer
  • The Beatles Swan Song: She Loves You & Other Records by Bruce Spizer
  • Recording the Beatles : The Studio Equipment and Techniques Used to Create Their Classic Albums by Kevin Ryan & Brian Kehew
  • The Beatles' London: The Ultimate Guide to Over 400 Beatles Sites in and Around London by Piet Schreuders
  • Beatlemania: The Real Story of The Beatles UK Tours by Martin Creasy
  • The Unreleased Beatles: Music and Film by Richie Unterberger
  • All The Songs: The Story Behind Every Beatles Release by Jean-Michel Guesdon & Patti Smith
  • The Songwriting Secrets Of The Beatles by Dominic Pedler
  • Mersey Beat: The Beginnings of The Beatles by Bill Harry (cuttings from the 'Mersey Beat' music newspaper)
  • The Beatles: The Ultimate Recording Guide by Allen J. Wiener
  • The Mammoth Book of the Beatles by Sean Egan (contains many contemporary news articles)
  • Read the Beatles: Classic and New Writings on the Beatles, Their Legacy, and Why They Still Matter by June Skinner Sawyers
  • The Beatles Covered (A Pictorial Journey Through Beatles Record Sleeves From Around the World) by Joachim Noske
  • Get Back: The Unauthorized Chronicle of the Beatles' " Let It Be" Disaster by Doug Sulpy & Ray Schweighardt
  • Introducing ... The Beatles Record Price Guide by Stanley Panenka
  • Price Guide for the Beatles American Records by Perry Cox

  • You Never Give Me Your Money: The Battle For The Soul Of The Beatles by Peter Doggett
  • The Beatles - All These Years: Volume One: Tune In by Mark Lewisohn
  • The Beatles: The Authorised Biography by Hunter Davies
  • Shout!: The True Story of the Beatles by Philip Norman
  • The Beatles Anthology by Brian Roylance
  • Can't Buy Me Love: The Beatles, Britain, and America by Jonathan Gould
  • The Beatles in Scotland by Ken McNab
  • Magic Circles: The Beatles in Dream and History by Devin Mckinney (Biography/Pop Culture comment)
  • Baby You're a Rich Man: Suing the Beatles for Fun and Profit by Stan Soocher

Original Sources (First Hand accounts):
  • Love Me Do!: "Beatles" Progress by Michael Braun
  • With the Beatles: A Stunning Insight by The Man who was with the Band Every Step of the Way by Alistair Taylor
  • Magical Mystery Tours: My Life with the Beatles by Tony Bramwell
  • John, Paul, George Ringo & Me by Tony Barrow
  • Abbey Road to Ziggy Stardust: Off the Record with the Beatles, Bowie, Elton & So Much More, by Ken Scott, Bobby Owsinski
  • John Lennon Called Me Normal by Norman 'Hurricane' Smith
  • A Cellarful of Noise by Brian Epstein
  • The Beatles and Me On Tour by Ivor Davis
  • The Rocking City: The Explosive Birth of The Beatles by Sam Leach
  • The Beatles: Messages from John, Paul, George and Ringo by Chris Hutchins
  • Here, There and Everywhere: My Life Recording the Music of the Beatles by Geoff Emerick and Howard Massey
  • All You Need Is Ears by George Martin
  • As Time Goes By by DerekTaylor
  • Fifty Years Adrift by Derek Taylor
  • The Man Who Gave the "Beatles" Away: The Amazing True Story of The Beatles' Early Years by Allan Williams
  • I, Me, Mine by George Harrison
  • The Love You Make: An Insider's Story of the Beatles by Peter Brown
  • The Ray Connolly Beatles Archive by Ray Connolly
  • The Beatles Lennon and Me by Pete Shotton
  • John by Cynthia Lennon
  • Lennon Remembers by Jann S Wenner
  • The Longest Cocktail Party by Richard DiLello
  • BEATLE! The Pete Best Story by Pete Best
  • Summer of Love: The Making of Sgt.Pepper by George Martin
  • Ticket to Ride: Inside the Beatles' 1964 & 1965 Tours That Changed the World by Larry Kane
  • Miss O'Dell: My Hard Days and Long Nights with The Beatles, The Stones, Bob Dylan, Eric Clapton, and the Women They Loved by Chris O'Dell
  • Standing in the Wings: The Beatles, Brian Epstein and Me by Joe Flannery
  • Do You Want to Know a Secret?: The Autobiography of Billy J. Kramer by Billy J. Kramer
  • My Kid Brother's Band... a.k.a. The Beatles by Louise Harrison
  • A Twist of Lennon by Cynthia Lennon
  • Tony Sheridan: The one The Beatles called 'The Teacher' by Colin Crawley
  • Sound Man: A Life Recording Hits with The Rolling Stones, The Who, Led Zeppelin, The Eagles , Eric Clapton, The Faces by Glyn Johns
  • The Beatles: The Playboy Interview (50 Years of the Playboy Interview)by Playboy, The Beatles
  • In His Own Write & A Spaniard in the Works by John Lennon
  • What's It All About? by Cilla Black
  • I'll Never Walk Alone: An Autobiography by Gerry Marsden
  • Waiting for the "Beatles": An Apple Scruff's Story by Carol Bedford
  • The Beatles the Bible and Bodega Bay by Ken Mansfield

  • The Beatles Unseen Archives: by Tim / Clayton, Marie Hill
  • The Lost Beatles Photographs: The Bob Bonis Archive, 1964-1966 by Larry Marion
  • Looking Through You: The Beatles Book Monthly Photo Archive by Tom Adams
  • Remember: The Recollections and Photographs of the Beatles by Michael McCartney
  • Beatles: Help! by Emilio Lari
  • Photograph by Ringo Starr
  • Beatles Memorabilia: The Julian Lennon Collection by Brian Southall
  • Rock 'N' Roll Times: The Style and Spirit of the Early Beatles and Their First Fans by Jurgen Vollmer
  • The Beatles: The Days of their Lives by Richard Havers
  • LIFE With the Beatles: Inside Beatlemania, by their Official Photographer Robert Whitaker by Editors of LIFE
  • Yesterday: The "Beatles" Once Upon a Time by Astrid Kirchherr & Max Scheler
  • The Beatles in Richard Lester's a Hard Day's Night : A Complete Pictorial Record of the Movie by J. Philip (Also contains extended interviews with Richard Lester)
  • Kaleidoscope Eyes: A Day in the Life of Sgt. Pepper. The Photography of Henry Grossman by Henry Grossman
  • Places I Remember:My Time With the Beatles by Henry Grossman
  • The Beatles: 10 Years That Shook the World by Paul Trynka (a combination of the best bits of the Mojo magazine Beatles Specials - so not just pics)
  • Postcards from the Boys by Ringo Starr
  • Harry Benson: The Beatles by Harry Benson
  • Mania Days, The Beatles 1964 US Tour by Curt Gunther
  • Eight Days a Week: Inside The Beatles' Final World Tour by Robert Whitaker
  • "Beatles" Conquer America: The Photographic Record of Their First American Tour by Dezo Hoffman
  • Now These Days Are Gone 'Help!' The Beatles Photography by Michael Peto (a volume of nearly 300 rare rediscovered photographs)
  • A Day In The Life Photographs of The Beatles by Michael Ward (captures 24 hours with The Beatles on February 19, 1963 – a day of singular historical importance.)
  • The Beatles by Norman Parkinson (With The Beatles Sessions - Abbey Rd September 12, 1963).

Maybe for inclusion list:
  • I Want To Tell You - The Definitive Guide To The Music Of The Beatles Volume 1:1962/1963 by Anthony Robustelli
  • The Beatles at Rishikesh by Paul Saltzman
  • Wonderful Today: The Autobiography of Pattie Boyd by Pattie Boyd
  • The Beatles As Musicians: The Quarry Men through Rubber Soul by Walter Everett
  • The Beatles As Musicians: Revolver through the Anthology by Walter Everett
  • Long and Winding Roads: The Evolving Artistry Of The Beatles by Kenneth Womack
  • The Beatles with Lacan: Rock'n' Roll as Requiem for the Modern Age (American University Studies) by Henry W Sullivan
  • Beatles for Sale: How Everything They Touched Turned to Gold by John Blaney
  • Revolver: How the Beatles Reimagined Rock 'n' Roll by Robert Rodriguez
  • The Beatles Collected by Pete Nash
  • Revolution: making of the Beatles' White Album (The Vinyl Frontier by David Quantick
  • Inside the "Yellow Submarine": The Making of the "Beatles'" Animated Classic by Robert R. Hieronimus

Last edited by KEROUAC : Jun 03, 2016 at 03:25 AM.
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Old Jun 02, 2016, 05:33 AM   #2
Apple Scruff
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Maybe for inclusion list (continued):
  • The Beatles: The True Beginnings by Roag Best
  • The Beatles Forever by Nicholas Schaffner
  • The Beatles' Let It Be (33 1/3) by Steve Matteo
  • The Beatles Lyrics: The Unseen Story Behind Their Music by Hunter Davies
  • Beatles" Complete Chord Songbook by Rikky Rooksby
  • The Beatles and the Historians: An Analysis of Writings About the Fab Four by Erin Torkelson Weber
  • The Zapple Diaries: The Rise and Fall of the Last Beatles Label by Barry Miles
  • Allen Klein: The Man Who Bailed Out the Beatles, Made the Stones, and Transformed Rock & Roll by Fred Goodman
  • The Beatles" Literary Anthology by Mike Evans
  • The Beatles At Shea Stadium: The Story Behind Their Greatest Concert by Dave Schwensen
  • The Beatles in Hamburg: The Stories the Scene and How it All Began by Spencer Leigh
  • Northern Songs: The True Story of the Beatles Song Publishing Empire by Brian Southall & Rupert Perry
  • The Beatles from Cavern to Star-Club: The Illustrated Chronicle, Discography and Price Guide 1957-62 by Hans Olaf Gottfridsson
  • Beatleness: How the Beatles and Their Fans Remade the World by Candy Leonard
  • Dear Prudence: The Story Behind the Song by Prudence Farrow Bruns
  • The Beatles In Cleveland: Memories, Facts & Photos About The Notorious 1964 & 1966 Concerts by Dave Schwensen
  • TIME The Beatle Invasion!: The inside story of the two-week tour that rocked America by Bob Spitz
  • The Beatles Off the Record: Outrageous Opinions & Unreleased Interviews by Keith Badman
  • Richard Lester and the Beatles: A Complete Biography of the Man Who Directed A Hard Day's Night and Help! by Andrew Yule
  • The Cavern Club: The Rise of The Beatles and Merseybeat by Spencer Leigh
  • The Best of Fellas: The Story of Bob Wooler by Spencer Leigh
  • Before They Were Beatles by Alan J Porter
  • Tomorrow Never Knows : The Beatles Last Concert by Eric.Lefcowitz & Jim Marshall

Last edited by KEROUAC : Jun 03, 2016 at 03:27 AM.
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Old Jun 02, 2016, 05:34 AM   #3
Apple Scruff
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In addition here are some other books which I thought looked interesting:
  • The Beatles in 'Yellow Submarine': Starring Sergeant Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band 1968 by Lee Minoff
  • Out of His Head (The sound of Phil Spector) by Richard Williams
  • Beatles In Canada Origins Of Beatlemania by Piers Hemmingsen
  • Beatles '66 LP: The Revolutionary Year by Steve Turner
  • The Beatles and their Revolutionary Bass Player by Dennis Alstrand
  • I Was There: The Beatles: 500 Fans Tell Their Stories of Seeing the Fab Four Live by Richard Houghton
  • Some Fun Tonight!: The Backstage Story of How the Beatles Rocked America: The Historic Tours of 1964-1966 Volume 2: 1965-1966 by Chuck Gunderson
  • The Beatles Fake Book: C Edition (Fake Books) by The Beatles
  • The Beatle Who Vanished by Jim Berkenstadt
  • The Guitar's All Right as a Hobby, John by Kathy Burns
  • Beat Merchants: Origins, History, Impact and Rock Legacy of the 1960s British Pop Groups by Alan Clayson
  • The Beatles Play Shea by James Woodall
  • Linda McCartney's Sixties - Portrait of an Era by Linda McCartney
  • From a Storm to a Hurricane: Rory Storm & The Hurricanes by Anthony Hogan
  • Some Other Guys - An Anthology of Some Other Groups That Helped Create the Mersey Sound by Manfred Kuhlmann
  • Paperback Writers: History of the "Beatles" in Print by Bill Harry
  • How They Became the Beatles by Gareth L Pawlowski

Last edited by KEROUAC : Jun 03, 2016 at 03:23 AM.
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Old Jun 09, 2016, 11:08 AM   #4
Dr. Robert
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Great list

Very happy to see From A Storm To A Hurricane on it, as I wrote it.

It is released 15th June.

Ex Hurricanes Lou Walters and Jimmy Tushingham have put straight some of the stories that have been written about the band, including their time in Hamburg with The Beatles.
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Old Jun 13, 2016, 02:23 AM   #5
Apple Scruff
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I'll have to check your book out andalucia. I read on another Beatles forum a post from Bill Harry saying that a recording of Rory and the band was found of them playing at the Cavern but Rory's mum had taped over it - apart from the intro.

PS I've just started a Beatles book blog for my list which i'm going to update and maintain

Last edited by KEROUAC : Jun 13, 2016 at 02:24 AM.
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Old Jun 15, 2016, 06:59 AM   #6
Dr. Robert
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Nice Blog .

Enjoy the book.

Yes it was taped over, but you never know what may turn up.
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