Join Date: Feb 05, 2001
Letters From Fans 1963-66
Here are some letters sent from British fans (and non-fans!) to the the "New Musical Express" regarding the Beatles during the 1960s. It`s taken from the new NME Beatles special:
FROM YOU TO US:
CONNIE RACE of Hedon, Hull writes:
I travelled to York in the hope of seeing and hearing the Beatles. I heard very little because of so many screaming girls in the audience.
This is absolutely ridiculous and ruins the entire performance for performers and true fans. And it certainly isn`t fair to the true Beatles fans who travel so far to hear so little. Please, please me - and leave the screams until the end.
EILEEN DAVIS of Newton-Le-Willows, Lancashire, writers:
I never realized how dull the pop scene was becoming until the Beatles crashed into it. They are full of zest and life, which so many other acts lack.
On stage they are informal and at ease. They laugh with the audience, and seem more reachable than the stars who keep their personalities strictly on the other side of the footlights. I hope they remain unspoiled by the fame.
DEVOTED BEATLE FAN, from Liverpool, 17, writes:
I was annoyed to read in last week`s NME that the Beatles are having a fan club Christmas party in London. Why can`t it be here in Liverpool? I`m quite sure they have more fans up north than down south.
Now I don`t blame the girl who refused to buy their record because she didn`t want them to become famous and to go to London!
ALAN VINCE, from Catham, writes:
I have nothing against the Beatles personally and if things had stopped at them - or even at Gerry & the Pacemakers - that would have been okay.
I don`t like their material, but two new groups of the same time aren`t too bad...that way, the disc scene isn`t overrun.
But we have now reached a point when every week dozens of new groups are "discovered". Where will it all end? I don`t know - but for the sake of British pop music, I hope it`s soon.
November 1963-June 1964
J.BOSSCHER (Dun Laoghaire): So the fab gear and hairstyles of the Beatles gives them claim to originality. I would suggest they refer to Boris Karloff`s portrayal of the Frankenstein monster. Perhaps then we may pay hommage to the true originator of the Beatles suit and Beatles fringe.
LINDA and JANE COOMBES (Hindhead):
We know the Beatles are fabulous but this is ridiculous! In last week`s NME the word Beatles is mentioned 79 times! (Editor`s note: you`ve added it twice to this issue!)
SUSAN PORTER (Blackpool):
Recently I read in my local newspaper that the Beatles had been offered a million dollars by a soft drinks firm in America for sponsorship. Brian Epstein had turned it down and the Beatles agreed with him because "there is only so much money young people can spend."
Surely if they had accepted this money they could have donated it to charity - which would have added more to their already overwhelming popularity.
SHEILA WATERWORTH (Barnley):
I think it is about time that someone protested about the ridiculous lengths to which some pop groups grow their hair. I`m a Beatles fan and although they started this craze, it`s gone far enough.
Nowadays groups look like a cross between an old English sheepdog and Screaming Lord Sutch.
KAARE AASE (Rogaland, Norway):
Don`t the Beatles get sore knees as a result of wearing such narrow trousers?
JOHN TOPPING (Manchester, 12):
While the Beatles are the big rave, why not a Beatles dance? It could be done by doing the shake with the hand movements, as though you were playing guitar the way John and George play.
Don`t forget to play it left-handed for Paul and add a drumming action for Ringo!
JANET JONES (Taunton, Somerset):
I feel strongly about the way the so-called fans treated Ringo`s and Maureen`s honeymoon. If they were really fans of Ringo surely they should have had the respect to leave him to enjoy his short honeymoon in peace. I`m glad the wedding itself was kept quiet. Best of luck, Ringo and Maureen!
R. WALLIS (Newcastle):
It seems to me that Ringo Starr`s marriage is the final death blow to the Beatles. In the past few months they have slipped further into oblivion popularity-wise, and now the nicest one of them is no longer eligible. It must surely bring about the end!
After reading John Lennon`s article in last week`s NME, I think the Beatles underestimate the loyalty of their fans. They take their fanaticism very seriously and thousands of them have kept loyal to the Beatles. They are not likely to give up now that one seeks personal happiness in marriage.
A. BLADES (Bishop Norton, Lincoln):
Why, why, why wasn`t the Beatles` "I Should Have Known Better" released as a single? To my mind it is one of the best discs they have ever made and would certainly have been a fantastic seller for them. This is surely proved by a comparatively unknown group the Naturals having a hit with it.
PAUL VIBERT (Oxford):
It amazes me that the Beatles are such critics of the way Elvis Presley`s career is run - and fail to realize their own is going the same way!
Not only is their a tremendous gap between their releases, something Elvis always avoided until recently, but now Brian Epstein says they will concentrate on films at the expense of tours, this being the way to please the greatest number of fans.
It`s an identical argument to that used by Col. Tom Parker to justify Presley`s lack of personal appearances. Will the Beatles be top group much longer if they carry on in this way?
ANNE LAURY of Harrogate, Yorkshire, suggests:
These lads have become far too big for their boots, and it`s time the fans paid them back and quit forking out their hard-earned pocket money to buy their records.
The Beatles` new single prompted NEIL HARTLEY, West Vale, Nr. Halifax:
After hearing "Help!" it is clear that Mssrs. Lennon and McCartney have been greatly influenced by Dylan`s song writing. The lyric is considerable more complicated than their former records, and the tune is also similar to watered-down Dylan.
Miss G. GREEN, from near Peterborough:
Are the Beatles laughing at the pop-buying public? I and several of my friends think they chose Bob Dylan as a guinea-pig for an experiment to see just how susceptible we are.
Look at the results - his records are selling without any singing ability on his part whatsoever.
If the Beatles were to withdraw their support, Dylan would fade into obscurity where he belongs.
CAROLYN WOODMAN (Edingburgh):
I think as many Beatles fans do, namely that it`s about time we saw more of our favourite group.
It`s ages since they`ve been on TV or radio. A few appearances would be the least they could do for their loyal fans.
So come on boys, let`s see more of you please.
JENNY and LESLEY, East Sheen, London, believe they speak for many Beatles fans when they say:
We are two fans who like the Beatles very much. But after reading your article (NME May 21, 1965) we are very disappointed in them.
After seeing last year`s Christmas show we were hoping to go back again this year, but no! They`ve earned their money and don`t care about the fans who made them.
They say they do enough live shows, but they don`t! We see them about six times a year, and half of these are repeated parts of films, e.g. "Top Of The Pops." Also records are very rare.
Other groups work harder than they do and make more records. They also film, do more live shows, tours, and pantomimes or Christmas shows. But do they complain? No. Even though they get less money.
We are truly disappointed in these boys who we have supported from the beginning. So come on, Beatles, don`t get too big for your boots as other stars have done.
P. JOY (Streatham Hill, London):
The Beatles at Shea Stadium (BBC-TV March 1, 1966) was terribly disappointing. It seemed so dated. There was the usual screaming, shouting session and the Beatles flogged all the old numbers.
They`ve come a long way since then as the TV show on the music of Lennon and McCartney showed.
DAVID TAYLOR (Sevenoaks, Kent):
May I ask why the Beatles and the Rolling Stones have deserted their fans? I see in the NME that their appearances on the Poll-winners Concert will not be seen on TV.
Have these two groups forgotten who put them where they are today? Have they become so mean that they deprive us from seeing them perform live at the greatest performance in the world?
R. P. (Winchester):
I read with interest that John Lennon and Paul McCartney have the highest opinion of Buddy Holly.
Wouldn`t it, therefore, be a wonderful gesture on the Beatles` part to record an album of Holly songs? It would appeal to many people and would no doubt become a best seller.
SUSAN JONES and S. WELLIS (Barrow-In-Furness):
As we know that George Harrison reads NME, we would like to take this opportunity of congratulating him and Pattie on their wedding. We love the Beatles very much and are very happy with the marriage.
MICK FOXCROFT, Carnforth, Lancashire:
So George Harrison thinks that the Hollies` version of "If I Needed Someone" is rubbish (NME December 10, 1965). Comparing the two versions I find that the drumming of Bobby Elliott is far better than that of Mr. Starr and the Hollies` vocal harmony is superior to the Beatles`.
LINDA MARKS, Salford:
How dare George Harrison run down the Hollies. The Hollies are a fantastic group with a great sound and they have made a great job of their new single!