Beatles Autographs
special-items
Once in a while we get in special items that stand apart from something either signed by one or all members of The Beatles. It could be a handwritten set list for a live performance, a signed drawing by John Lennon or a piece of historic memorabilia that is not signed at all by any of the Beatles - yet many of these items have significant value due to their importance with regards to the history of The Beatles. Check back periodically as new items of this nature, while rare, do turn up from time to time.

SI28. A "PYX Book"With A Color Version Of An Iconic Pose On The Front Cover, Signed By The Beatles.

Very shortly after the July 1963 Dezo Hoffmann photo session in London that produced 2 of the most recognizable shots of The Beatles ever taken, a publishing company called Highlight Publications set out to capitalize on The Beatles’rapidly growing popularity. The publishing company put together a magazine for the fans, licensed through PYX Productions, which was filled with many new and unseen photos of The Beatles. All of the photographs were taken by Dezo, some candid, some posed, and also included in the ‘fanzine’ were bios of each band member. With text that was often humorous in tone throughout the 24 page book, the color ‘centerfold’ with facsimile autographs of all of The Beatles served as a small poster to be taped to the wall of a fan’s bedroom. The book, which measures 7 ½” x 9 ½”, was a quality product for the 2’6 price tag (two shillings and sixpence –or one-eighth of a pound). It sold well and was a hit, thus making Highlight a nice profit. Although mostly sold on newsstands throughout Great Britain, these ‘PYX books’ were often available for purchase by vendors at concert venues.

Here is one of those PYX books that has been autographed on the front cover by all four members of The Beatles. The cover features the iconic Hoffman ‘standing collarless suits pose’ - from the aforementioned London photo shoot - which also appears on the back cover of the U.S. Capitol Records “Meet The Beatles” album, as well as in numerous, multi-sized publicity photos that were available for fans to purchase.

Although shot by Hoffmann in black and white, this image used on the front of the PYX book has been colorized - hand tinted by artists and impressively done, it looks as good as would have been possible in 1963. This color version of the classic image is magnificent and certainly much closer in reality to what The Beatles looked like at the time Hoffmann’s camera shutter clicked, locking onto his film roll one of the most seen photographs in history. Above the image of the band (although at the time it was not needed for most to identify them) “THE BEATLES” is written in big block letters.

All four have autographed on or above their respective image, with John Lennon, George Harrison and Ringo Starr signing in blue ballpoint pen, while Paul McCartney has used a dark blue fountain pen to sign. In another hand the name of the original owner “A. Richards” is written in small letters. Over the years, approximately 6 or 7 PYX books authentically signed by The Beatles on the front cover have surfaced, certainly qualifying them as very rare. Although the backstory of this piece has been lost to time, the time frame of the signatures and the inks used to sign are consistent with two other PYX books that were autographs by The Beatles in August of 1963, when they played at The Springfield Ballroom in Jersey, Channel Islands, England. This is a great image to have signed by The Beatles, especially in color…..$18,500

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SI27.  An Autographed Performer’s Pass For “The Great POP Prom” - The Only Time The Beatles And The Rolling Stones Played At The
           Same Event!

On September 15, 1963, an event took place that happened only once in The Beatles illustrious career: they shared the same stage as The Rolling Stones, who were at the time “up-and-coming”, yet even so, they were only mere footsteps behind The Beatles – who had a slim ‘head start’, having embarked on their amazing journey only slightly before The Stones.

Here is a set of Beatles autographs found on the back of a 'Performer's Pass', measuring 3” x 2 ½”, used for “The Great POP Prom” - which took place on this historic day at the prestigious Royal Albert Hall in London. The Pop Prom took place once each year, and it was a fundraiser for the Printer’s Pension Corporation. On this occasion, The Master of Ceremonies was well known British DJ Alan Freeman.

All four have signed on the back of this pass beautifully in blue ballpoint pen, with John Lennon inscribing “To Jill love from” immediately before. Both John and Ringo have added “X’s” after their signatures. A small area of paper loss (a punch hole) under John’s signature is more than likely related to the function of the pass and was almost certainly done on the day of the show. This is a nice set of autographs with an interesting history, from the one and only time that the bill topping Beatles performed at the same event as their  only true peers in the classic rock genre, their rivals The Rolling Stones…..$9,000

  
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SI26.  An Artistes & Staff Pass From ‘The Royal Variety Performance’, Signed By The Beatles On That Historic Night

The steep trajectory that The Beatles amazing rise to fame took in the year 1963 showed no signs of going anywhere but upward at the same angle as the end of year approached. Having released their debut album “Please Please Me”, which shot to #1 and also the chart topping singles “From Me To You” and “She Loves You”, in early November the band were poised and ready to release the freshly recorded and future smash hit “With the Beatles” album.

On November 4, 1963 The Beatles performed at the ‘Royal Variety Performance’ at the Prince of Wales Theatre in London, and it was to become one of their most important concert appearances. The ‘The Royal Variety Performance’ (also called ‘The Royal Command Performance) had roots going all the way back to 1912.  It was a gala evening held annually and by the 1960’s, it was popular variety show consisting of family entertainment which included singing, dancing, comedy and other forms of enjoyment for the viewing public, as the show was broadcast on television by the British ITV TV network. The acts were all there at the request of the Royal Family.

All four have autographed the back of this artistes and staff pass very nicely in black ballpoint pen, with Paul McCartney adding “Beatles” above his signature. This pass, which measures 4 ½” x 3 ½”, was given at the door to Philip Rose from the weekly half hour television show “Pinky and Perky” (who were actually marionette pigs). The show appeared on BBC television and Philip Rose was a manipulator of one of the puppets, and also a wise man to have his pass autographed by The Beatles that evening.

In attendance were both The Queen Mother and Princess Margaret and this is the very performance that saw John Lennon say just before The Beatles’ final song “Twist and Shout”, “For our last number, I would like to ask your help. Will the people in the cheaper seats, clap your hands? And for the rest of you, if you’ll just rattle your jewelry…..”.

For The Beatles to play The Royal Variety show in 1963 was something that even they could not have imagined as the year began, when they were barely known in Great Britain outside of their native Liverpool. Through hard work, extensive touring, and of course their amazing music – the band’s popularity spread like wildfire, bringing them to the place where they were far the biggest thing in England by the time November 4th rolled around.

While The Beatles did sign a few items on this momentous evening, the number of autograph set that have materialized to date is very low: a few programs, a couple of artistes passes and the odd autograph book page.

The Royal Variety Performance occurred less than 100 days before The Beatles’ historic first U.S. visit, and while it was indeed a great achievement for them – it was also the last of their ascending big steps before their tremendous television appearance on “The Ed Sullivan Show”. Here is an opportunity to own a piece of this historic evening that occurred at the Prince Of Wales Theatre on November 4, 1963…..$20,000

  
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SI25.  A Fully-Signed First Pressing of The Beatles' Debut Single "Love Me Do"
           From Their Dawson's Music Shop Appearance of October 6, 1962


Ever since 1957, The Beatles had been knocking around Liverpool, working to hone their skills as musicians and expand their repertoire beyond cover versions to their own original tunes. By 1962, they'd played countless church halls, dance halls and clubs, served two apprenticeships in Hamburg, cut a record as the backing band for Tony Sheridan (which brought them limited notoriety) and found a manager in the form of record retailer Brian Epstein. They had become wildly popular throughout their native Liverpool, but despite this and Epstein's valiant efforts, they had failed to achieve their dream of a record contract. An unsuccessful audition with Decca and numerous other record company rejections had all but dashed their hopes. Then in early May, Epstein secured an audition (or, more accurately, an "artist test") for them with EMI's smallest label Parlophone, having been referred to producer George Martin by Sid Coleman, head of EMI's record publishing company, Ardmore & Beechwood.

On June 6, 1962, John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Pete Best first recorded, as part of their audition, the song that would at long last propel them out of Merseyside and onto the national music scene: "Love Me Do". By the time of their first official recording session, Pete had been drummed out of the group and replaced with Ringo Starr. And so it was on September 4, 1962, a contract secured, that The Beatles' (in their final lineup) entered the EMI Studios on Abbey Road and recorded "Love Me Do". (On September 11th, it was re-recorded with session man Andy White on drums after George Martin expressed dissatisfaction with Ringo's performance from a week earlier.)

When they started out, The Beatles dreamed of one day having their own record, and at the time they really couldn’t see much beyond that. Achieving their dream, "Love Me Do" hit the shops on October 5th and soon entered the British charts, peaking at number 17. The following day, October 6th, the band made the 15-mile trek to Widnes, Lancashire on the outskirts of Liverpool for a 4 p.m., half-hour-long record signing at Dawson's Music Shop. Each Beatle signed their debut single right on the red and silver label. This signing appearance would be the first of only three such occasions in their storied career, all of them taking place in England. That same evening, the group crossed the Mersey to the Wirral, performing for a Horticultural Society Dance at Hulme Hall in Port Sunlight. When you consider the fact that the Dawson's record signing only lasted 30 minutes, you begin to understand the extreme rarity of a signed copy of this record.

Offered here is a stunning first pressing of The Beatles' breakout single, signed at Dawson's the day after the record's release, obtained by a local Liverpool fan named Bob Edwards. All four Beatles have signed their full names beautifully in ballpoint pen on the "Love Me Do" side (the “A side”). John Lennon has signed at the top of the label directly above the word "Parlophone", adding three X's (kisses) after his name. Paul McCartney has signed on the bottom of the label near (and partially through) the song title and songwriting credits, also adding three X's. George Harrison has signed the "sweet spot", splitting his first and last names directly above and below the center punch-out spindle hole. Ringo Starr has signed with two X's up the label's right-hand side, directly atop Parlophone's £ trademark. The silver label printing does not detract from the beauty of these classic early Beatles' signatures. The majority of the “Love Me Do” 45’s that were autographed by the band were done on the “B side” (containing the song “P.S. I Love You”), which is less desirable than to have the “A side” signed as this one is. The record – which shows signs of wear and play - has been framed to 11” x 18” by the previous owner, with an original green Parlophone 45 sleeve, and a short written description.

Here is your opportunity to own an incredible piece of early Beatles history: their first single, fully-signed by all four members at the very
point in time when they would start making the transition from a local Liverpool bar band to the most influential group in the history of popular music…..$30,000


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SI10. A Rare Autographed “Beatles Monthly” Magazine: Issue Number 3

In mid-1963, as The Beatles were well on their way on the ascent to, and it was apparent to publisher Sean O’Mahoney that they should get their very own magazine. So he approached Beatles manager Brian Epstein with the proposal that resulted in the publishing of “The Beatles Book”, known mainly as “Beatles Monthly”. The magazine ran for 77 consecutive months between August of 1963 and December 1969. During that period, readership grew steadily from 80,000 to 330,000 a month at the end of the run.

Starting off with an editorial written by publisher O’Mahoney (using the pseudonym “Johnny Dean”) the magazine featured tons of great exclusive photographs of The Beatles in action on stage, backstage, in the studio, at home and just generally ‘being Beatles’ taken by photographer Leslie Bryce, who had amazing access to the band at work and at play. There were several interesting and relevant articles in each issue, mostly written by Beatles road manager Neil Aspinall and Beatles equipment manager Mal Evans. Also found in each magazine were lyrics to Beatles songs, fan mail, polls and contests.

Here is the third issue of “Beatles Monthly”, No. 3 from October of 1963 which features a shot taken that summer of The Beatles having fun in a swimming pool. All four have autographed beautifully near their respective image in red ballpoint pen. These signatures date from the time of the issue’s release date in the Fall of 1963. Measuring 6” x 8 ¼”, the magazine is in very good condition overall, with some signs of handling.

Over the years, “Beatles Monthly’s” signed by all four on the front cover have proven to be extremely scarce, with only a handful surfacing…..$18,000

 

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SI9.  An Autograph Set Obtained During “Magical Mystery Tour” Filming, Signed On The Day The “I Am The Walrus” Video Was Shot.

On Monday, September 11, 1967, two weeks of filming commenced on The Beatles' new self-conceived movie project, "Magical Mystery Tour". Boarding a Bedford VAL Panorama coach bus in central London, The Beatles and a motley crew of passengers (which consisted of their friends and office staff, a camera crew and a handful of actors and actresses of various shapes and sizes, including a “Rubber Man”) headed west, cruising the British countryside through Hampshire, Devon, Cornwall and Somerset counties. Along the way, the coach passed through such villages and towns as Widecombe-in-the-Moor (Dartmoor), Bodmin, Newquay, Watergate Bay, Porth and Taunton, stopping at many of these locales.

The final week of primary filming (September 19-24) was done at the West Malling RAF Air Station near Maidstone, Kent. Here, most of the interior sequences were filmed (including "Aunt Jessie's Dream" and the climactic "Your Mother Should Know" staircase scene), along with exterior shoots for the "I Am The Walrus", Marathon Race and Tug-of-War sequences.

This two-week period provided scores of fans along the route with access to the group - the most anyone had seen since the waning days of 1963, just prior to their worldwide fame. Even more incredible was the improvisational nature of much of the script, which resulted in some of these fans being utilized as impromptu extras in selected sequences.

Because of The Beatles' approachability, many of the scant few authentic autograph sets from that amazing year 1967 – a year that found The Beatles at the height of their creative powers - were signed during the filming of "Magical Mystery Tour". Offered here is one such set, signed at the West Malling Air Station on three pieces of paper. All four Beatles have signed on small spiral notepad paper in vibrant blue ballpoint pen. One page has been signed jointly by Paul McCartney and George Harrison. Another has been signed by John Lennon and a third has been signed by Ringo Starr. All three pieces measure 3-1/2" x 2-1/4" (9 x 5.75 cm).

These signatures were obtained by a service wife who was living in West Malling at the time, autographed on pages taken from her shopping pad. On the reverse side of the John Lennon signed page, writing in her hand notes things she must remember to pick up. This set is accompanied by a color snapshot of her two sons with Paul McCartney at the time of the signing. John Lennon was also standing close by when the shot was taken, as you can see his right arm, recognizable due to the distinctive brown pinstripe suit he wore for several scenes in the movie. The boys were used as extras in the film and can be seen in the Marathon Race and Tug-of-War segments, which were shot on Saturday, September 23, 1967. It is on this same day that The Beatles filmed what many consider to be the apex of the “Magical Mystery Tour” film, their music video for John’s masterpiece “I Am The Walrus”. This autograph set was signed within very close proximity to the actual space where this amazing video was shot, on the very same day!

Autograph sets from this late in The Beatles’ career are quite desirable because they had all but stopped signing for fans after their breakthrough in America three and a half years earlier. In recent years, Beatles autograph sets from the year 1967 have literally dried up and seldom appear anywhere for sale. While this set has been autographed on three separate sheets, they were obtained at the same time, using the same pen, on the same lined notepaper. The set could appropriately be framed with either of 2 photos contained within the “Magical Mystery Tour” LP booklet (included with this set). The larger of the two images (12” x 24”) features The Beatles in full stride during the “I Am The Walrus” shoot.

If you are a fan of “I Am The Walrus”, the “Magical Mystery Tour” film, or if the spectacular and colorful 1967 is your favorite ‘Beatle year’ - then this is the set for you…..$12,500


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SI24.  A Swedish Press Release Autographed By The Beatles During Their October 1963 Visit To Sweden

On the afternoon of October 23, 1963, The Beatles arrived in Stockholm, Sweden after starting off the day with an early recording session for “I Wanna Be Your Man”, which was to be included on their upcoming second album release, entitled “With The Beatles”. This session was their last for the record, and in keeping up with their furious pace The Beatles were off on a tour the very same day they finished recording an album!

Shortly after their arrival at The Hotel Continental in Stockholm, it was there that The Beatles attended their first ever press conference for a foreign tour - as this was the band’s very first tour outside of the United Kingdom. The Beatles performed a series of concerts over a 5 day span in Sweden, returning to Great Britain on October 31st. “She Loves You”, which had been released one month before this trip, was sitting at the top of the British charts, and was in the top 10 and steadily climbing in the Swedish charts.

At the press conference, the journalists present were given a press release, which contained information about The Beatles and their accomplishments to date. Here is one of those which were handed out on that day, and this one has been autographed beautifully on the reverse by all in blue ballpoint pen, with Ringo Starr adding “The Beatles” at the top, above his signature. This is virtually a perfect set of Beatles autographs and it would have been hard for them to sign any better on that day, as each is an excellent and complete ‘textbook example’ from the period. The autographs were obtained by female Swedish music journalist Lisbet Notini, who was based in Stockholm. The page measures 8 ¼” x 11 ½”, and is in very good condition overall, with one fold across the center.

Additionally, this autographed Swedish Press Release comes with four 10" x 8" unpublished photographs taken of The Beatles and a few journalists who were present at a small, intimate gathering at the Hotel Continental restaurant after the press conference. Autograph obtainer Lisbet Notini is pictured in each these photos – she is the blonde sitting to John Lennon’s left.

The front of this extremely rare (even unsigned) Swedish press release contains a full page of Swedish writing, which when translated reads:


THE INCREDIBLE STORY OF THE BEATLES

"It is something to celebrate" The Beatles have had many reasons to exclaim since that day exactly one year ago when their manager Brian Epstein told that their first single sold 5,000 copies just days after the release. It was the beginning of a career that is unparalleled in the pop world.

Love Me Do was the name of the disc, and soon turned it up in the UK Top Twenty list. A well informed pop journalist claims it was the first time an instrumental group reached the charts already with their debut album. Love Me Do was not long-lasting in the Top Twenty, but when the next single Please Please Me emerged, it was so much more emphatically. In seven days it went from seventeenth to fifth place, a week later it was in the top. The avalanche had started rolling.

The first LP Please Please Me was recorded in a single day was shortly after this year's best-selling album in England. The huge interest in the LP followed up with an EP, Twist and Shout. Results: First place again in the Top Twenty and a silver disc, incidentally the first-ever awarded to an EP. Single No. 3 From Me To You stayed in the top of the list from mid-April to early June and was rewarded with new silver disc. Demand for concerts of the Beatles was increasing, and the gang that includes Gerry and the Pacemakers from their hometown of Liverpool toured around England. Radio - and Television offers came in, and The Beatles appeared in all the major show-programs.

It was not long before they had their own program on the BBC, "Pop Go The Beatles", which was intended as a short series, but due to its immense popularity become a permanent program. It was not long before they had their own program on the BBC, "Pop Go The Beatles", which was intended as a short series, but due to its immense popularity became a permanent program. While the LP Please Please Me passed the 250,000 mark, the other day their first gold plate was awarded to The Beatles for the recent success of She Loves You, which right now is marching into our Swedish lists.

Now it's time for a Sweden-tour for the Beatles, and the program looks like this: Wednesday, October 23: Arrival in Stockholm.

Thursday 24 radio interview with Klas Burling, broadcast November 11
Friday 25 two concerts in Karlstad
Saturday 26 concert in the Royal Hall in Stockholm
Sunday 27 two concerts at Cirkus in Goteborg
Monday 28 concert in the sports hall in Borås
Tuesday 29 concert in Eskilstuna
Wednesday 30 TV Record Drop In at Grona Lund, airing November 3

The Beatles visit to Sweden will be a feast for all their Swedish fans and for lovers of pop at all, there can be no doubt. Few can well be said to represent the genre better, both as fine artists and composers, and as the incarnation of the great dream of the career in show business.

THE BEATLES DISCOGRAPHY:
Singles: Please Please Me / Love Me Do Odeon SD 5937
From Me To You / P. S. I Love You Odeon SD 5944
Twist and Shout / Boys Odeon SD 5946
She Love You / I'll Get You Parlophone R 5055

EP: Twist and Shout / There's A Place / Do You Want To Know A
Secret / A Taste Of Honey Parlophone GEP 8882

LP: "Please Please Me" Parlophone PMC 1202 (PCS 3042)

With friendly greeting Skandinávská GRAMMOPHON PO Box 27053
27 Stockholm 15.10.1963

(Promoter of Beatles-turn "TELSTAR. Information: Hasse Wallman,
Tel: 6361 66)

A Beatles signed press release from any time period is exceedingly rare, and this Swedish press release is a tangible and desirable piece of their touring history, signed by the band on their very first venture to multiple destinations in another country, with their historic first U.S. visit coming barely 100 days after this press release was autographed by The Beatles.....$15,000

 
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SI23. "A Hard Day's Night" UK LP Flat Fully-Signed By All Four Beatles On Day Of Release, July 10, 1964

On July 6, 1964, the Beatles attended the Royal World Premiere of their first feature film, A Hard Day's Night, at the London Pavilion in Piccadilly Circus. Four days later, on the afternoon of July 10th, they boarded a flight at London's Heathrow Airport for their triumphant return home to Liverpool for the Northern Premiere of the film. They arrived in late afternoon at Speke Airport to the screams of 3,000 fans. A brief press conference was held, followed by a police-escorted drive to the city centre along a route lined with an estimated 200,000 people, roughly a fourth of the entire population of Liverpool.  The motorcade arrived at the Town Hall at a little before 7pm, where 20,000 fans gathered in the streets outside. Here, they were given a civic reception hosted by The Lord Mayor, Alderman Louis Caplan, and attended by 714 city officials, friends and family members.  During the celebration, the group stepped out onto the balcony of the Hall and waved to the throngs milling in the street below.  At 9pm, they left in an Austin Princess limousine for the Odeon Cinema, where the Liverpool charity premiere showing of A Hard Day's Night took place.  At 1:30am, after the premiere, a limousine ride back to Speke Airport and another round of civic ceremonies, they took a return flight to London.

July 10th is noted not only for the Beatles' Liverpool homecoming for the ‘Northern Premiere’, but also it is the release date of their third studio album, sharing the same name as the movie - A Hard Day's Night, the first side of which contained seven songs from the film's soundtrack. If ever there was a high spot in those early days of global success, this was it. As the four most recognized faces on the planet, the boys were brimming with confidence over their recording career and the accolades they'd received for the film.  On that very morning of the album’s release, before leaving Heathrow Airport for Liverpool, they signed for their attending flight stewardesses cardboard front cover ‘flats’ of the new album. These flats (which measure 12” x 12”) were actually the factory pressed cardboard printed front covers of the A Hard Day’s Night LP, before being fully constructed into album covers…..after which a thick, heavy laminate was applied to the front cover.

The accompanying photo shows Paul McCartney preparing to board the British Eagle airlines flight for Liverpool.  The two stewardesses shown to the right of Paul are each clutching their newly-autographed A Hard Day’s Night covers. The attendant on the right far is holding the very one that is being offered here.  An enlargement of the cover seen in the photo is provided for closer inspection of the location of the signatures and the positioning of the individual letters, making for proof-positive photo identification!

Because the British albums had thick glossy laminated front covers, the Beatles found it difficult, if not impossible, to sign the fronts because the ballpoint pens of the day would not take to the glossy surface.  The vast majority of fully-signed British LPs (any title, unless it was a ‘gatefold album’) were signed on the un-laminated back cover, often on top of the liner notes — and those few that they attempted to sign on the front have signatures that are generally incomplete, due to pen skips. This flat, however, was signed on the un-laminated front cover graphics – with 20 headshots of The Beatles - making it a far more desirable and rare presentation piece.

As of this writing, there are no known A Hard Day's Night Parlophone UK LP covers signed by all four Beatles on the front, and less than ten known examples fully-signed on the back.  On this classic cover (featuring four rows of five head shots, set up as though they were frames from a movie), each Beatle has signed beautifully in black ballpoint pen on the row where his respective image appears.

Consider, too, the supreme rarity of having photographic provenance for any signed Beatles piece. Instances where visual proof of authenticity is available in the form of photographic evidence simply never happens, making the photo verification for this signed LP flat all the more astonishing. You can't ask for better provenance for a Beatles signed piece than having that piece appear in a photo with one or more of the Beatles!

Adding to the rarity of this piece is the fact that 90% of authentic Beatles autograph sets were signed in 1963 when the band members were still reasonably accessible to their fans.  Items signed once they had achieved global fame are relatively few in number because they were generally sequestered, inaccessible and unapproachable.

In excellent overall condition, the piece has been expensively framed to museum archival standards. Here is a chance to own the instantly recognizable front cover of a classic and important Beatles album, signed on the day of release and at a time when The Beatles were on top of the world, celebrating their first film  —  successful, young, exuberant, creatively prolific and with so much more to achieve…..$55,000

TO SEE NEWSREEL FOOTAGE FROM THAT DAY CLICK HERE TO VIEW.


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SI20. A Signed “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” Inner Sleeve

Over the past 44 years, The Beatles "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" has been written about and commented on perhaps more than any album in pop music history. There’s little more to be said about the revered, groundbreaking 1967 LP. It sits supremely atop the hierarchy of virtually every generation of recorded music in the 20th century, lauded as one of the most important recordings ever made. Its stature has long been recognized by Beatles fans and collectors — and collectibles related to “Sgt. Pepper” are among the most sought-after in the hobby.

This stunning signed original LP inner sleeve to the landmark release has been signed and inscribed in black felt tip pen in its year of release by all four members of The Beatles. The background of this piece is not known, however. In the early days of Beatles auctions (1980s and 1990s), there were many beautiful, authentic Beatles signature sets that had little or no background history. They were sold for what they were. Today, many auction houses work tirelessly to secure a history behind each piece they sell. While it’s true that every signed piece has a story to tell, the fact remains that many of these stories are lost to time.

The signatures on this “Pepper” inner sleeve date to 1967. The vast majority of autographs from that year were signed during the filming of the “Magical Mystery Tour” television special as the bus toured the English countryside and stopped in the towns along the route. It’s quite possible that this was signed then - the signatures match up precisely with this time frame - but there is unfortunately no way to verify that they were from this 2 week period in September. Suffice to say that full Beatles signature sets from 1967 are becoming increasingly scarcer and harder to find as fewer and fewer are coming into light. There has only been roughly a handful in the past couple of years.

The set presented here is a beauty, with each of the four signatures a textbook example. You just can’t get better than this for the quality and completeness of the signatures, which are fairly large as well, with John’s measuring 4 inches in length. Three of the four Beatles have autographed with inscriptions: “love from Paul McCartney”, “Love Ringo Starr” (followed by three X’s/kisses) and “To Dottie Wood love John Lennon” (followed by a single “X”/kiss). George Harrison has simply signed his name. Signing with kisses was commonplace in 1962-63 when the group had friendships and close interaction with their fans. After 1964, this practice all but disappeared, making the appearance of “kisses” from Ringo and John in 1967 an uncommon sight. The inner sleeve design created by The Fool in the psychedelic style so prevalent in the “Summer of Love” provides the perfect background for this set, capturing the essence of that mind-expanding period when music, fashion and ideas were at their most expressive.

Vintage, fully-signed “Sgt. Pepper” LP covers can command in excess of six figures. This fully-signed inner sleeve, the ONLY one which has surfaced to date, is a top-notch investment piece and could very well be the closest most collectors will ever get to owning a signed “Sgt. Pepper”. Here is a chance to own a piece of pop music history — at a far more affordable price than a signed cover.....$60,000


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SI22. A Handwritten Letter Signed By All 4 Beatles While On The 1966 U.S. Tour

In the late fall of 1966, a charity LP called "Beatleviews-66" was released. The record contained interviews conducted with the Beatles while on their 1966 tour of North America.  The narrator of the LP was Ken Douglas, a deejay from radio station WKLO in Louisville, Kentucky. In the mid-1960s, Douglas was somewhat of an anomaly among deejays in America. He was British. As might be expected, amid all of the fan frenzy surrounding the Beatles and other British groups, this made Douglas (and his accent) very popular among listeners of WKLO. Never mind that he had long hair, vaguely resembled George Harrison and wore clothes that looked to be straight out of Carnaby Street.

The London-born Ken Douglas had migrated to the United States in 1964 on the heels of the British Invasion, having been exposed to America through his earlier career as the athletic director on a cruise ship. From New York, he traveled to Louisville to visit friends and met up with a man who had a men's clothing store that happened to be across the street from WKLO. Douglas got a job at the clothier and in 1965, through the store's proximity to the radio station, had a chance encounter with program director Mitch Michael.  Michael invited him to the station, gave him a tour, introduced him to the staff and, seeing the potential in having a Brit on the air, asked him if he'd like to sit in with one of his deejays and talk about London life, fashion and music. Douglas did the gig for about two months, and was soon offered his own show. For "The Ken Douglas Show", he would make frequent trips to London to interview all the top British stars, and before long, he was the top jock at WKLO.  By early 1966, the much in-demand Douglas had his own fan club with a devout following of over 1,400 members.

An encounter with Beatles press officer Tony Barrow led to a meeting with Brian Epstein, who told him that the next time the Beatles toured America, he'd be invited to join them. For the first half of the 1966 North American Tour, Douglas was at their side, in hotels, on the plane, on buses and backstage before the shows. His reports from the tour helped place WKLO at the top of the ratings heap in Louisville.

The Beatles found Douglas someone they could easily relate to - a fellow countryman. In Cleveland on August 14, 1966, Douglas sat down with Ringo Starr, who told him about his home life and fatherhood.  Douglas also reported on the chaotic scenes at Cleveland Stadium. Two days later, on August 16th in Philadelphia, Douglas snared Paul McCartney for a lengthy recorded chat. When Douglas brought up the diminishing crowds at Beatles concerts, McCartney was quick to remind him that the Beatles still played to more people than any other act. Douglas predicted that the Beatles would continue to sell records long after they stopped touring, which led McCartney to reveal that the group was far more interested in writing and recording than performing, citing the band's increasing inability to be heard above the screams. Of course, history has shown that, two weeks later, their touring days would indeed end. McCartney then spoke with Douglas about his life in London (having just bought a home near the EMI Studios), the Beatles' recording schedule after the tour, the trip he took to Paris with John for the latter's 21st birthday and the mayhem in Cleveland, commenting that he enjoyed "fan participation" as long as no one got hurt. Finally, referring to the negative publicity generated by Lennon's "Bigger Than Jesus" statement, McCartney told Douglas that when there was no good news to report, the papers preferred disparaging articles. The pair got on well together.

Within five days of Douglas' interview with McCartney, the Beatles' bassist had written him a letter, which was on Paul’s personal linen stationary. It read:

"Dear Ken and fellow Tea People,

Just a line to say best, yes best, of luck on this new and courageous enterprise. May she reign forever, and sail the ocean blue, yes blue.

All the best to everyone there from all of us here."

McCartney then signed his full name, followed by the other three Beatles - John Lennon (who has added "F.B.O." following his signature), Ringo Starr and finally, George Harrison, who has written “and not forgetting” before his signature, and a star-burst symbol afterwards. The “J” used by John is a ‘throwback’ to the style of “J” that was last seen in early 1963 – some 3 ½ years prior. All four of the signatures on this letter are perfect; they are excellent and complete examples, and are as nicely as they could have signed on that day. Additionally, McCartney has written “ESQUIRE” following his printed name in the letterhead.

The included, original mailing envelope is also fully-addressed in Paul’s hand on the front:

To
"Tea Time"
Ken Douglas
Radio WKLO
307 West Walnut St.
Louisville
Kentucky

This envelope is postmarked from Cincinnati, Ohio on August 21, 1966, the exact mid-point of the tour. Affixed is the required 5 cent postage, in the form of a blue tinted George Washington stamp. On the reverse are the printed words "J.P. McCartney, London, England", the font being an exact match to that on the stationary – therefore making this the proper accompanying envelope!

"Tea Time" refers to the frequent tea breaks that Douglas would take on the air with students visiting the station. While the content of the letter is subject to interpretation at this point in history, the "new and courageous enterprise" that McCartney writes about could refer to Douglas' possible return to the men's haberdashery business, which had been his occupation prior to his stint at WKLO.  After leaving the station in 1969, he worked briefly at WINN and WAKY in Louisville and then moved to California where he did return to the men's clothing business, this time in a partnership with his close friend Davy Jones of the Monkees. This letter could allude to an earlier possible venture in men's apparel, which indeed would happen, but not for several years after.

Handwritten letters signed by all four members of the Beatles are exceedingly scarce, with less than a handful surfacing to date. Add to that the fact that the vast majority of known (single signed) personal letters from any member of The Beatles was written in their early days, through 1963. Anything handwritten from the mid-1960s, especially while on tour in North America, is exponentially much more scarcer.

This is by far the best of the few letters signed by all of The Beatles known to exist, making this an extremely rare opportunity for the discerning collector….. $30,000


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SI13.  British Overseas Airways Corporation Flight Menu Signed By All Four Beatles After Filming "Help!" In The Bahamas, March 1965


On Monday, February 22, 1965, The Beatles flew from London to the Bahamas to commence filming on their second feature film, "HELP!". The following day, primary shooting began - and filming in various locations on New Providence and Paradise Islands would continue over the next two weeks. Although the Bahamas sequences would be the last to appear in the completed film, it was the first location on the shooting schedule. On Wednesday, March 10th, with filming in this British crown colony completed, The Beatles boarded a BOAC flight at Nassau International Airport and returned to England, arriving in London on the morning of March 11th. Two days later, the group left England once again, headed for the Austrian Alps where the snow sequences were filmed.

This 4-page BOAC menu was printed for use during The Beatles' return flight to England from the Bahamas, thus the wording "B.O.A.C. Welcomes Aboard Beatles Bahamas Special". The piece has also been printed with the date "March 1965" and features a gold embossed B.O.A.C. crest. The inside boasts the full menu of libations and food offered to The Beatles and their entourage during the flight.

Most known authentic autographed examples of this menu were signed in-transit on March 10, 1965 for various members of the flight crew - and this one is no exception. Each Beatle has signed his name in black ballpoint pen on the front of the menu, beginning at the top with Ringo Starr, followed by Paul McCartney, George Harrison and John Lennon. These are beautiful examples of their signatures from this era. As a bonus, the back page of the menu has been additionally signed by The Beatles' "HELP!" co-star Roy Kinnear, the rotund British character actor who played Algernon, the bumbling assistant to mad scientist Professor Tiberius Foot (portrayed by Victor Spinetti).

Measuring 4 ½” x 7”, the piece is in excellent condition with no tears or creases. Barely noticeable wear appears along its edges and there is slight smudging on the right-hand side of the front cover.

This menu, signed during the filming of "HELP!", represents a key period in The Beatles' career. They had already experienced the madness of their breakthrough year of 1964 and were now on the verge of a dramatic leap forward in the evolution of their music, evidenced at the end of the year by their seminal album, "Rubber Soul". Genuine examples of their signatures from this period are scarce indeed as they were virtually inaccessible by their fans. Collectors are seldom presented the opportunity to own a set so indelibly tied to one of their classic films, so don't miss out on this beauty…..$22,500


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SI12.  BOAC postcard signed by The Beatles with Jimmie Nicol in June 1964

On June 3, 1964, Ringo Starr was stricken during a morning photo shoot in Barnes, UK and taken to University College Hospital. There, with a temperature of 102°, he was diagnosed with tonsillitis and pharyngitis. With The Beatles' first world tour scheduled to begin in Copenhagen, Denmark the following day, the band was faced with either cancelling part of the tour (which really wasn't an option) or securing a replacement drummer for Ringo. Though John and Paul quickly accepted the notion of a fill-in drummer, George Harrison had to be persuaded. Brian Epstein and George Martin convinced him it was their only realistic option.

Jimmie Nicol, founder and drummer of a group called The Shubdubs, was recommended by George Martin because Nicol had recently done some session work for one of Epstein's acts, Tommy Quickly, and also because he was familiar with Beatles numbers, having worked on an album called Beatlemania.

An impromptu audition was held at EMI's Abbey Road studios where Nicol rehearsed six numbers with John, Paul and George. He was reportedly offered £2,500 per gig, plus another £2,500 as a signing bonus. On top of that, he was now a Beatle! Two hours after the rehearsal, he was packing his bags for Copenhagen.

Donning Ringo's stage suits, with trousers that were too short, Nicol continued as an able substitute for Ringo in Denmark, The Netherlands, Hong Kong and Australia before playing his eighth and final show in Adelaide. Ringo, after having his tonsils removed, was released from the hospital on June 11th and rejoined this band mates on June 14th, the day before their Melbourne concert. Jimmie Nicol's short stint with The Beatles was over.

Unable to say goodbye to the Boys because they were sleeping, Nicol was taken to the Essendon Airport in Melbourne where Brian Epstein presented him with a £500 check and an inscribed gold wristwatch. Just as quickly as he had been plucked from obscurity to join The Beatles, he returned to relative anonymity. While he remained active in the music business until 1967, recording and touring with other bands, he never came close to the fame he'd attained in his 11 days as a Beatle. To this day, he has refused to tell his story.

Because he was with The Beatles for such a short period of time, pieces signed by John, Paul, George and Jimmie are quite scarce. The BOAC postcard offered here (which measures 5 ½” x 3 ½”) is one of only a dozen or so Beatles with Jimmie Nicol autograph sets. Dedicated in Jimmie's hand "To The Skipper", it has been boldly autographed in blue ballpoint by Jimmie, Paul and George, while John has used a black ballpoint pen. The bottom edge of the postcard has been trimmed slightly, without affecting the signatures in any manner.

This is the ideal piece for the collector who already possesses authentic Beatles sets featuring Pete Best and Ringo Starr -- or for the collector who simply enjoys the most obscure of Beatles artifacts. Jimmie Nicol was the only musician to ever replace a member of The Beatles after their rise to worldwide fame in early 1964 and was only with them for a few days. Consequently, this autograph set variation is not only unusual and desirable, but very scarce…..$9,500


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PH1.  THE ULTIMATE SIGNED BEATLES PHOTOGRAPH:
          An Extremely Large, Rare And Desirable Dezo Hoffmann Portrait Of The Beatles - -
          The Most Iconic And Reproduced Beatles Image Of All Time - - Fully Signed By The Group In 1963

In the spring of 1963, in his Wardour Street studios in London, photographer Dezo Hoffmann held a photo session with The Beatles that produced the single most iconic image of the band ever taken: the classic seated collarless suits portrait that was used on countless pieces of memorabilia and sent around the world for publicity purposes. Even Capitol Records used the photo numerous times for the picture covers of its American single and EP releases. The date of the photo session varies. Hoffmann himself claimed that it was taken on May 17, 1963, while The Beatles London book by Mark Lewisohn, Piet Schreuders and Adam Smith states that the session took place three weeks earlier -- between April 22nd and 27th. Regardless of the date, the seated photo remains the most reproduced image of the group ever.

Just a few short months after the photo session, The Beatles made their final three appearances for 1963 at the ABC Theatre in Blackpool -- one on August 11th, one on August 25th and one on September 8th. By this time, the Hoffmann photo was well-known and widely-distributed to both fans and members of the press. During one of these three Blackpool dates, a shop owner whose store was located next door to the theater managed to secure the signatures of all four Beatles on a huge 14-1/2" x 11-1/2" Topstar heavy stock photo print of the classic image.

To say that this signed photo is unusual, rare and desirable is the greatest of understatements. Authentic signed copies of this photo are exceedingly scarce in any size. Even autographed 10” x 8” Hoffmann photos are impossible to find and very seldom surface -- let alone a signed portrait of this unusually large size.

Each of The Beatles has signed by his respective image in blue ballpoint pen. Also, because the photo is oversized, each member of the group has signed his name proportionately larger than would have been signed on a smaller print. The signatures are beautiful, complete and, again, exceptionally large.

This is the ultimate signed Beatles photograph -- arguably the most famous and recognizable shot of The Beatles ever taken. When one considers that the piece features the classic collarless suits pose, in this large size, signed by all four Beatles,  it's easy to understand why it's undeniably one of the finest Beatles autographed photographs in existence.

The photo is in excellent condition and it has been beautifully and expensively framed using the finest archival materials, by Vandeuren Framers in Los Angeles (www.Vandeuren.com). Here is a rare opportunity to make the ultimate signed Beatles photograph your own…..$60,000


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SI11.  A Plaza Hotel Picture Postcard Fully-Signed By The Beatles On February 21, 1964 At The End Of Their First American Visit

The Beatles' two-week-long first visit to America in February 1964 is perhaps the most significant milestone in their history. It was their breakthrough in the States that transformed the band from a nationally-known act in their native England into an international phenomenon. Images from this visit are as iconic and indelible as any in the second half of the 20th century: their live debut on The Ed Sullivan Show, their first American concert in Washington, D.C., the Carnegie Hall shows and Miami, where they vacationed in the sun interspersed with the filming of 2 more Ed Sullivan appearances, which were aired later.

Fresh from their February 7th arrival at JFK airport and their first American press conference in JFK's VIP Lounge, the band was chauffeured to the historic Plaza Hotel on Fifth Avenue at Central Park South, a drive that was well-documented in the Maysles Brothers' "First Visit" documentary. Once The Beatles checked into the Plaza, they retreated into the sanctity of the 12th floor Presidential Suite where they watched the evening news, relaxed and were interviewed by WINS deejay Murray The K and, by phone, BBC presenter Brian Mathew. The Plaza would be their home base for the next four evenings and the hotel's Baroque and Terrace Rooms would accommodate two additional press conferences. While the hotel has played host to scores of political figures, world leaders and entertainers in its 105-year history, The Beatles will always remain its most famous guests.

The autographed postcard presented here captures the very moment in time when John, Paul, George and Ringo first became household names in America. Measuring 5 ½” x 3 ½”, it is the only known fully-signed generic Plaza Hotel postcard. The picture side features a beautiful artist's rendering of the stately hotel at its elegant best, with several horse-drawn carriages standing at the ready. The reverse message side has been signed very boldly and clearly by all four Beatles in blue ballpoint pen. The condition of the card is excellent overall, with light soiling and a small tack hole which is barely noticeable looking at the back of the card. There is additional printing in an unknown hand of the names of the original recipients of the card. One of them, Howard, wrote years later:

"This Beatles autograph was obtained by my aunt back in 1964. She was flying back to England from New York and met them on the plane. My aunt had given this to her grandchildren (Brian and Shelly) who are my cousins. When my parents were visiting over there the following year, they gave this to them to bring back, and was given to me."

Based on this account, the postcard was signed the day they left America for England -- February 21, 1964 -- either during a layover between Pan Am flights at JFK Airport -- or on the actual return flight to London. It's more than likely that one of the Beatles' or a member of their entourage had taken some postcards as souvenirs of their visit and, upon receiving the autograph request, retrieved one of the cards and used it for signing.

Other than CBS Studio 50 (home of The Ed Sullivan Show), the Plaza Hotel is the setting most associated with their visit to New York City. You'd be hard-pressed to find another piece that better represents The Beatles' American breakthrough or their New York experience than this one. Because fan access was virtually impossible, fewer than twenty pieces signed during The Beatles' first American visit are known to exist, making ownership of this autographed postcard the privilege of having a first visit piece…..$25,000


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SI6. A Dinner Menu from the Salutation Hotel in Perth, Scotland signed beautifully by all four Beatles during their 1963 Scottish Tour

On Saturday, October 5, 1963, The Beatles embarked on a three-night mini-tour of Scotland beginning with a show at the Concert Hall in Glasgow. The following night, Sunday, October 6th, they would play two shows for 3,000 fans at Carlton Theatre in Kirkcaldy before concluding the tour on Monday the 7th with a performance at Caird Hall in Dundee. The dates were promoted by Albert Boncini, who had made an exclusive agreement with Beatles manager Brian Epstein to present their concerts in Scotland.

While they stayed at Glasgow's Central Station Hotel the first night, they changed accommodations for the second night, choosing the oldest established hotel in Scotland -- the historic Salutation Hotel in Perth. Geographically speaking, this was a logical choice as Perth was centrally located between the final two tour cities of Kirkcaldy and Dundee. On the morning of the Monday, October 7th, they had breakfast at the Salutation, playing their final show that evening in Dundee, some 12 miles away.While they stayed at Glasgow's Central Station Hotel the first night, they changed accommodations for the second night, choosing the oldest established hotel in Scotland -- the historic Salutation Hotel in Perth. Founded in 1699, like nearly everything The Beatles were associated with, one of the most notable events of the hotel’s centuries long history is the fact that the band stayed there for 2 days. Geographically speaking, this was a logical choice as Perth was centrally located between the final two tour cities of Kirkcaldy and Dundee. They left the hotel on Monday, October 7th, playing their final show that evening in Dundee, some 12 miles away.

Offered here for your consideration is a dinner menu from the Salutation Hotel dated the 6th of October, 1963, boldly and beautifully signed in blue ballpoint pen on the reverse side by all four Beatles. This is a fabulous and nearly perfect set of Beatles autographs, signed about as nicely as they could have on that day in Scotland in 1963. As an additional, very desirable touch, Ringo Starr has written “Beatles” at the top above the four signatures. The menu, which measures 5 ½” x 8”, has been torn horizontally at the top by the original owner and it is in very good condition overall, with some signs of handling.

A mere 7 days after this menu was signed, The Beatles made their famous televised appearance on "Sunday Night At The London Palladium", which was the equivalent of the Ed Sullivan Show in Great Britain. It was this performance that signaled the start of a national frenzy and the first use of the term "Beatlemania".

This is your opportunity to own a magnificent set of Beatles signatures signed for a fan on the brink of their global fame…..$12,500

 

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SI14.  An Incredibly Rare Note Handwritten By Paul McCartney To A Female Fan, Autographed By All Of The Beatles In 1964

Here is a note handwritten by Paul McCartney to a female fan on an off white colored white sheet of paper, thanking her for a gift. It reads:

"Dear Vicky, Thanks very much for your letter and the St. Christopher medal, it was great. Love from all the Beatles", under which John, Paul, George and Ringo have signed beautifully using the same blue ballpoint pen that Paul used to write the note. These signatures date from late summer 1964, when The Beatles were on their first full-fledged tour of North America. The sheet measures 6 1/2" x 6", with folds, torn on the right side with some yellowing.

Beatles full band signed handwritten letters and notes are incredibly rare, with less than a handful surfacing to date......$24,000

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SI8. A “Twist and Shout” Extended Play Record Sleeve Signed By The Beatles

On July 12, 1963, The Beatles released their first EP (extended play) record in Great Britain on Parlophone Records, entitled “Twist and Shout”. The songs included on this 4 song record were all taken off of their debut album “Please Please Me” and they were: “Twist and Shout”, “A Taste of Honey” (both cover versions written by other artists) and “Do You Want to Know A Secret” and “There’s A Place” (both Lennon & McCartney originals). Even though the songs were available on the album, the “Twist and Shout” EP sold more than 800,000 copies in Great Britain, a remarkable feat at the time for an extended play record. Upon release, the record promptly reached #1 in the U.K. charts – and stayed there for 21 weeks! It also remained in the EP charts for a record 64 weeks.

The front of the “Twist and Shout” EP sleeve features a Dezo Hoffmann photo of The Beatles in a jumping mid-air pose, hovering above a decrepit wall. John Lennon’s vocal performance on the song “Twist and Shout” was nothing short of magnificent. It is a raucous dynamic rocker, and to this day it ranks among the finest examples of a Rock & Roll vocal in the history of British music. John was only able to record one take (because it took a toll on his vocal cords), which was left for last in the one day marathon recording session on February 11, 1963 that resulted in almost the entire “Please Please Me” album. Many agree that the Beatles’ version of “Twist and Shout” is the definitive version, rather than the original done by the Isley Brothers.

All four have signed the reverse side of this original pressing EP record sleeve beautifully in dark blue ballpoint pen. The signatures date from within one month and a half of the time of release – so the EP was very current when The Beatles signed it. The sleeve is in excellent condition, having been well kept very the years. The original record is included, and it is in VG condition. Beatles signed EP’s are incredibly rare - many more times so than signed LP covers. In fact, to date there have been less than 10 authentically signed Beatles EP covers known to surface, which puts them in the realm of ultra-scarce.....$30,000



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SI7. Rare Pay Receipt From the Top Ten Club in Hamburg. Signed by All Five Original Beatles, June 1961

On Saturday, April 1, 1961, The Beatles embarked on their second trip to Hamburg, a stay that would last 13 weeks and encompass 92 nights and over 500 hours on stage. Their residency this time was at Peter Eckhorn's Top Ten Club on the Reeperbahn in the St. Pauli red-light district. This wouldn't be the first time they'd played the Top Ten. The previous fall, during their first visit to Hamburg, they had often sneaked off from the Kaiserkeller to play the newly-opened Top Ten Club which provided a more upscale setting and a far more accommodating boss than the Kaiserkeller's "Mak Schau" master Bruno Koschmider. Their 1960 contract with Koschmider had stipulated that they could not play another club within 25 miles of the Kaiserkeller without his permission. When Koschmider heard of The Beatles' defection, he got his payback by having the under-aged George Harrison deported, followed soon by Paul McCartney and Pete Best (whom he accused of attempting to burn down the wretched accommodations he'd provided for them behind the screen of the decrepit Bambi Kino movie theater).

Now it was a few months later -- the spring of 1961 -- and the band was back to play the Top Ten, fulfilling an agreement Peter Eckhorn had made with them the previous November. After a letter writing campaign conducted by Pete and his mother Mona Best to the West German Immigration Office, the deportation ban on Paul and Pete was lifted for a year. Harrison was now 18 years old and so the path to play Hamburg was cleared. A final contract with Eckhorn was negotiated and they took the stage on April 1st. The 13-week schedule was grueling. They were required to be on stage from 7 p.m. until 2 a.m. Mondays through Fridays and from 7 p.m. until 3 a.m. on weekends, with 15-minute breaks each hour. Their salary was 35DM (deutschmarks) per band member per day for a total of 245DM a week for each man. At the time, the 35DM daily fee for each Beatle amounted to about 3 pounds British Sterling). While their pay was scant, the long hours helped them to dramatically improve their playing skills. Stu Sutcliffe, who had stayed in Hamburg with his girlfriend Astrid Kirchherr following the band's first visit, joined the group on stage numerous evenings during their run of Top Ten shows.

It was during this visit that The Beatles made their first real professional recordings backing fellow Englishman Tony Sheridan for the popular German label Polydor (whose A & R man was producer/composer/orchestra leader Bert Kaempfert). These sessions held from June 22-23 produced several recordings, most notoriously the "My Bonnie" single as well as "Ain't She Sweet" and "Cry For A Shadow".

At the end of each week during their Top Ten tenure, the band (in addition to Tony Sheridan) was presented a single, handwritten pay receipt that they were required to sign in order to receive their playing fees. Thirteen of these receipts were created -- one for each week of their 13-week stay.

Offered here is one such receipt, signed in full by all five original Beatles. While there is a space for Tony Sheridan to sign, he has not added his signature, making this receipt all the more desirable because of the presence of ONLY the Beatles' signatures. This receipt is the one from their next-to-last week at the Top Ten Club and is dated "17.-23.6.61" (June 17-23, 1961). Astonishingly, this receipt was signed at the end of the VERY week that The Beatles recorded "My Bonnie" and quite likely within a mere day of the completion of those historic Polydor recordings. Their last date at the Top Ten was Saturday, July 1st. As previously noted, this receipt shows the 35DM daily pay and the 245DM weekly pay for each member.

Measuring approximately 8½" X 10", the receipt has been handwritten in blue fountain pen presumably by the accountant for the Top Ten Club and each Beatles has signed in blue ballpoint. The signatures are strikingly clear and complete: "George Harrison" (who was 18 at the time), "Paul McCartney" (age 19 that very week), "J.W. Lennon" (age 20), "Stuart Sutcliffe" (who turned 21 that same week, on June 23rd, his last birthday before his tragic death of a brain hemorrhage 10 months later) and "Peter Best" (age 19).

This signed receipt is exceedingly scarce and is among the fewer than twenty known sets featuring the signatures of all five original Beatles. As mentioned previously, many of the known receipts from this series of shows were additionally signed by Tony Sheridan, making this one signed only by the five Beatles a very unusual, rare and desirable piece. When a few of these receipts first appeared at auction in 1999, they were immediately sold and absorbed into collections. Most have never been put back onto the market. Generally speaking, full sets of Beatles autographs from 1961 with Stuart Sutcliff are virtually non-existent.

Here is the rare opportunity to own a stunning piece of early Beatles history -- and, considering the extreme scarcity of such pieces, one that may not come along again for years to come, if ever.....$60,000





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SI2. A Pan Am Postcard Signed by The Beatles on February 7, 1964 During Their Historic First Flight to New York


Friday, February 7, 1964. It is arguably the most decisive day in the history of The Beatles. At 11:00 a.m., the group and their entourage boarded Pan Am flight 101 at London’s Heathrow Airport and embarked on the trip that would change the world forever. This was their first journey to America, and they were on the way to make their groundbreaking appearances on The Ed Sullivan Show. Fading in the distance behind them was their native England, the country they had taken by storm throughout 1963.

Through chart-topping records, television, radio and concert appearances, they had well-established themselves as the most heralded act in all of British entertainment. In just a few hours, they would arrive in the United States – America – the one domain that no British act had ever conquered. During the flight, The Beatles were virtually caught between two realms – a past that saw humble beginnings, a demanding musical apprenticeship in Liverpool and Hamburg and a meteoric rise to fame in Britain … and an unfathomable future that not even the most vocal devotees could have predicted. This was more than just a flight to New York City. This was a flight to their destiny. Once they stepped off the Pan Am Yankee Clipper and onto the tarmac at JFK Airport, nothing would ever be the same again.

It’s been often said that an autograph is a moment frozen in time. If there was ever a Beatles autograph set that captured an epochal moment, this is it – a Pan Am postcard signed by all four Beatles in mid-flight just an hour before that momentous landing in New York. All have signed their full names beautifully on the reverse side of a Pan Am postcard in blue ballpoint pen. George Harrison has additionally written an inscription: “Dear Monica Best wishes from the BEATLES”.

What is most remarkable about this signed postcard offering is the letter that accompanies it. Rarely has such impeccable provenance been provided with a Beatles autograph set. Amazingly, the note, written by a member of the flight crew (Gerry Shea), is on a sheet of Pan Am letterhead and boasts all the written pedigree that collectors dream about. It’s as though Gerry knew that detailed provenance would be critically important over four decades later.

At the top, he has dated the letter “Friday, February 7, 1964” and has also added the time (“5:30 p.m. London time, 12:30 p.m. New York time”) as well as “Flight 101, Boeing 707”. The body of the letter reads:

"Dear Monica,

Good news – I have the Beatles on board and we are up in the air now about one hour away from New York. The flight has been a good one so far. We left London airport at 1 a.m. and sure enough there were hordes of screaming girls – The B’s boarded safely however – They are very nice Monica, fine lads – I had a chat with each of them and told them of you – I told Paul especially that he was your favorite – They all send their greetings to you and don’t be surprised if they all pop into Woolworths to see you someday – Excuse my poor writing as the air is a little rough here. I am enclosing the card they signed just for you. They said they were delighted to do it. I sure hope you are still living at this address because I would not want your autographs to get lost – The Beatles are going to be in N.Y. 10 days – They did some singing in the lounge on the plane – quite good too. I hope you, Ann, Mrs. Voss, Olive, etc. etc. are well – Please give my best wishes to all of them & to Mary White if you get to see her. Hope to be seeing all of you again at the end of the month – Both the Beatles & I send our love to you – Keep well

Gerry Shea "


As if this isn’t enough provenance, the letterhead reads “In Flight…Pan Am Jet Clipper”, further cementing the fact that the set was signed during the flight.

One of the most fascinating passages in Gerry’s letter is one mentioning an impromptu show held by the group in the plane’s lounge. One can only imagine them doing an “unplugged” rehearsal of their Sullivan set!

Interestingly, as Gerry was obtaining The Beatles’ autographs on this postcard, the band’s road manager Neil Aspinall was elsewhere in the plane busily adding his own version of their signatures to a stack of publicity photographs in an effort to fulfill what would certainly be an avalanche of autograph requests from Manhattan police and city officials. After a while, he tired of signing in full and proceeded to sign the balance of the photos in first name only.

The postcard and letter are accompanied by the original Pan Am envelope which has been addressed to the recipient in London, Monica Conway, and is postmarked “FEB10 ‘64” (mailed from Jamaica, New York – which is just next to JFK airport).

Noted Beatles author and historian Bruce Spizer has devoted an entire page to this piece in his highly-acclaimed 2003 book The Beatles Are Coming! The Birth of Beatlemania in America, which chronicles in detail the band’s gradual introduction to American audiences throughout 1963 as well as their whirlwind two-week first visit to America in February 1964.

In every detail, this remarkable assemblage of items represents the calm before the storm. Even the most discerning collectors would be hard-pressed to find a Beatles autograph set with better provenance or one that captures a more important moment in The Beatles’ extraordinary history. This is a truly unique opportunity to own what is one of the best-documented and historic sets of Beatles autographs ever to surface.....$35,000





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SI5. A George Harrison Handwritten Letter to a Fan, August 1963

From August 19 through August 24, 1963, The Beatles played a series of shows at the Gaumont Theater in Bournemouth on the southern coast of England. During their extended stay in this seaside resort town, the band took up residence at the very posh and very exclusive Palace Court Hotel. While there, photographer Robert Freeman took the cover shot that would be featured on the front of the band’s second album, “With The Beatles”, which was released a few months later. Between gigs, they took time out to answer some of their fan mail. George also wrote his first song which appeared on a Beatles album, “Don’t Bother Me”, while sick in bed at the Palace Court Hotel during this time in Bournemouth.

This 2-page letter, handwritten by George Harrison “To Boote” on Palace Court stationery, is filled with interesting references. His opening line mentions the chart-topping “She Loves You” which he urges the fan to buy (it was released on August 23rd, one day before they left Bournemouth). It would instantly hit number one, and went on to become the best selling Beatles single in ever the U.K. He follows this with a reference to ‘jelly babies’, the soft British confection he had recently told the press was their favorite candy. After his comment was published, British fans inundated the group with boxes of jelly babies. In this letter, Harrison denies their affection for jelly babies, stating that no one in the band likes them and that the press made it up. (His published comment would have further repercussions a few months later when American concertgoers showered the band with thousands of jelly babies, a much harder candy The Beatles disdained because of the pain they inflicted when they were hit by them on stage.) Harrison then makes a reference to the band’s ever-growing presence in London as their recording career progressed, a move which upset their original Liverpool fans and, as they earned international acclaim, proved to be permanent.

Harrison additionally comments on the frenzied audiences at Beatles shows, stating that “we don’t mind girls screaming in the noisy numbers, but I think we would prefer them to be a little quieter in the slow songs.” He also alludes to what was obviously a question about their forthcoming shows, telling the fan that there are no scheduled appearances at the Gaumont State Theater in London’s Kilburn High Road, but that they will be playing London’s Royal Albert Hall. (This was the ‘Great Pop Prom’ show held on September 15, 1963. The Beatles topped the bill, sharing the program with eleven other acts, including a new up-and-coming band called The Rolling Stones.) Harrison signs off with a full signature which is extraordinary and as nice as he could have signed on that day, followed by three kisses (“XXX”).

The letter is written in blue ballpoint pen. The two pages each measure 5” x 8”, have three mailing fold lines and are in very good condition overall. Letters written by members of The Beatles to their fans are quite scarce. While they would reply to fan letters early in their career, the practice would stop altogether by the end of 1963 and into 1964 as they became international stars and virtually untouchable — and unreachable…..$17,500





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SI4. A Letter Written By John Lennon To A Fan In Early 1963

This letter was fully handwritten by John Lennon in black fountain pen on a sheet of stationary paper which measures 8” x 10”. He starts off by writing his return address in the upper right hand corner: “251 MENLOVE AVE WOOLTON LIVERPOOL 25 LANCS” (Lancashire). This, of course, is "Mendips", the childhood home where he lived with his Aunt Mimi from 1945 until 1963, when The Beatles' growing fame necessitated a move to London.

The letter reads:

“Dear Dawn,
Thanks for your letter, glad
you liked the show.
For fan-club information,
I can’t tell you about opening a
Stoke-on-Trent branch but I suggest
you get in touch with the Northern
Branch here in Liverpool and they can
let you know all about it. The address is
NEMS 12-14 Whitechapel
Liverpool 1.
Lancs.
Thanks again – hope to be
in Hanley again soon.
Cherrio (sp)
love
John
Lennon
X"


Hanley was one of six towns that comprised Stoke-on-Trent and The Beatles played there only twice in their career -- on March 3, 1963 (the final night of the Helen Shapiro tour, during which The Beatles were an opening act for a 16 year old girl) and again on May 19, 1963 (the second night of their tour with Roy Orbison).

This letter, in response to one the fan had written to John following the March show in Hanley, as the signature dates from early March of 1963. (By May, just two months later, characteristics within John’s signature had changed noticeably). On March 5th, just two days after that first Hanley gig, the band recorded their third single "From Me To You/Thank You Girl" and on March 22nd, their first LP "Please Please Me" was released. By the time they returned to Hanley with Orbison in May, The Beatles were so enormously popular that they would soon grab the spotlight from the American headliner, taking top billing on the tour. They had already come a long way in just two months.

This letter represents one of the very few times that Lennon personally answered fan mail with a handwritten letter and it is certainly one of the last times he ever wrote to anyone from "Mendips" before his move to London. Once he took up residence in the city, the demands on his time grew exponentially and he rarely had the time for long personal replies like this one.

The charm of this letter lies not only in the fact that it was written from his childhood home, but that he takes the time to personally direct a fan to the proper source for Beatles fan club information. Naturally he provides her with the address for Brian Epstein's NEMS store on Whitechapel Street in Liverpool, which at the time was the "Eppy-center" of the Beatle universe! Shortly thereafter, The Official Beatles Fan Club would be located on Monmouth Street in London.

The letter is in very good condition, with non detracting mailing fold marks, tape residue at top left and a small tear to the right of this residue.

Letters handwritten by John Lennon are extremely desirable and few are offered for sale in any given year. This is a truly rare opportunity to own a letter written by John just prior to The Beatles' quick astronomical rise to an unprecedented level of fame, which began right after this letter was written, following the release of their first LP record “Please Please Me”.....$19,500





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SI1. A Fan Magazine Signed By The Beatles Before Their Historic Shea Stadium Concert


On August 15, 1965, The Beatles made rock ‘n roll history when they performed at Shea Stadium in Flushing, Queens, New York before a crowd of more than 55,000 frenetic fans. It shattered all previous attendance records for a concert and was the very first time a band had performed in a stadium. The event was well-documented, having been filmed in its entirety. The now-legendary concert film included not only the entire show, but several segments that preceded their appearance on the stage, which was located directly over 2nd base. The Beatles flew by helicopter onto the roof of the World’s Fair Building, located on the grounds of the 1964-65 New York World’s Fair. From there, they were transported by Wells Fargo armored truck # 1040 into Shea Stadium, a distance of just over 100 yards.

Each member of the band was given a Wells Fargo agent badge, which they later pinned to their stage jackets and wore throughout the entire show. The driver of the truck that day was Mr. John Lee, a Wells Fargo employee who had an eight year old daughter named Joann. Mr. Lee had known in advance what his assignment would be that day, so he took along one of his daughter’s Beatles fan magazines with the idea of getting the group to sign it. When he returned home that night, he presented Joann with the magazine, signed for her by all four Beatles!

Here is that fanzine, signed by the band just moments before they were to perform what is widely considered to be not only their most memorable concert ever, but arguably the single most famous concert of the past fifty years. All four have signed the front cover of the book very nicely in blue ballpoint pen. George Harrison has signed directly over his face, Ringo Starr has signed just under his chin, John Lennon has signed in his hair and Paul McCartney has signed just under the word ‘BEATLES’. Being a dark cover, the contrast is not ideal, but the signatures do show up well despite the fact that some are in dark areas. The book measures 8” x 10”, and is in very good condition overall.

This item comes with a signed letter from Joann Lee which recounts the circumstances surrounding the signing of her magazine. The event was written up in the September-October 1965 issue of the American Express magazine ‘Going Places’. This prize has been in Joann’s possession since 1965 and was only recently sold by her. Very few items were signed by The Beatles on this historic day - in fact less than five have surfaced to date. Here is one of those rarities, and yet another exceptional item being offered by Beatles Autographs with excellent, verifiable provenance.....$19,500





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SI3. The Beatles 1961 Hambleton Hall Pay Receipt Books


There was a time when The Beatles earned just a few pounds a night and the venues were so rough, survival skills were as important as playing ability. In 1961, few places were as violent as Hambleton Hall in suburban Liverpool. Fights would routinely break out as groups of ‘teddy boys’ (roughnecks) settled their differences with chains, chairs, broken bottles, fists and fire extinguishers -- all while the band played on stage just a few feet away. But, for all its violence, this dingy dive was also an essential proving ground for every emerging Mersey band.

Beginning on January 25, 1961, The Beatles played a total of sixteen times at Hambleton Hall. By the time they played there for the last time - on January 13, 1962 - they had been discovered by Brian Epstein. Their new manager made it clear to them that this was not the type of place he wanted them to play.

Here are three of the earliest Beatles signed documents in existence: original 1961 pay receipt books used for three The Beatles gigs at Hambleton Hall in Fincham, Huyton on the outskirts of Liverpool !

After a wild, raucous evening of playing, it was customary for one designated member of the band to go into Hambleton Hall's makeshift business office to collect the band's pay for the night. The others would spend that time loading out their equipment. Vic Anton filled out each receipt page and, once it was signed by the band member, he would then pay the group's fee in cash.

Three of the pages in these books have been signed by members of The Beatles; John Lennon (as "J.W. Lennon") and Paul McCartney (as "J.P. McCartney") signed receipts for pay inside the larger of the books and George Harrison signed for their money in the smaller book.

The first appearance of a Beatles signature is on the receipt for Wednesday night, February 22, 1961, the band’s fifth appearance there. John Lennon signed for their pay of 10 pounds. Earlier that day, the group had played the Aintree Institute where they had received 7 pounds, two shillings. On the bill with The Beatles that night were Faron and The Tempest Tornadoes and Rory Storm and The Hurricanes (with Ringo on drums). The hall’s penchant for violence is evident in the fact that more than half of the receipts in each book were made out to bouncers and doormen. In some cases, several bouncers were required in one night. Eight bouncers were paid that evening, indicating a particularly rough night at the hall. As paltry as it may seem, a night’s pay of eight pounds or more for the band was actually quite good in 1961. This amount was split among all members, with Neil Aspinall usually receiving one pound for transporting their equipment to and from the gig having just been hired as their roadie.

On Monday evening, March 20, 1961, Paul McCartney (age 18) signed for their night’s pay of seven-pound-ten. The Beatles shared the stage that night with The Ravens (who received a mere four pounds).

The next appearance of The Beatles in these two books is Sunday, November 26, 1961. George Harrison (age 18) signed for their pay that evening. With their local popularity on the rise, the group received a whopping 15 pounds (which was more than the combined earnings of all the other acts that night: The Cyclones, The Strangers and The Jeanaros). This billing is a complete contradiction of the original advertised line-up, proving that bands often changed at the last minute.

The real beauty of these extraordinary documents is that they perfectly encapsulate the entire Liverpool beat scene of the early 1960s. In addition to The Beatles, they are signed by members of virtually all the major Liverpool bands from that remarkable era. Within these books, you'll find receipts signed by members of Gerry and The Pacemakers, Rory Storm and The Hurricanes, The Big Three, Derry and The Seniors, Kingsize Taylor and The Dominoes, Johnny Sandon and The Searchers, Ricky and The Red Streaks, Faron and The Tempest Tornadoes and Earl Preston and The T.T.s. They also feature several long-forgotten bands like Oggi and The Flintstones, The Galvanizers, Johnny Rocco and The Jets, Ray and The Del Renas and Dixie and The Daredevils.

According to reports, these receipt books were originally the property of the late Bob Wooler, legendary compere of the Cavern Club. Wooler, along with his business partner Vic Anton (a used car salesman by day) promoted shows at Hambleton Hall throughout 1961 and Wooler, in fact, also served as emcee at these shows.

More than likely, there were one or two other Hambleton Hall receipt books from that year as these two only cover six months (February-April and October until early December). While it was not the safest or most desirable setting, it is clear from the books that Hambleton Hall was still one of the more popular venues for beat shows in 1961.

This is a rare opportunity to own a pair of historically significant pre-fame artifacts – so ‘pre-fame’ in fact that they didn’t make the first U.S. trip until more than three years following the first Hambleton Hall gig – and three years is an eternity when it comes to early Beatles history. The books measure 6 ¾” x 3” (John and Paul) and 4 ½” x 1 ¾” (George), and are in very good overall condition considering the extensive use they had throughout 1961 and the fact that nearly 50 years that have passed since. These are the only known Beatles Liverpool pay receipt books that have ever been made available for sale. The Beatles’ signatures contained within them are among the earliest known examples, as very few pre-1962 signatures have ever been documented.

These pay receipt books are steeped in early Beatles history, and they are among very few similar items in existence that could have easily have been lost forever or destroyed. Instead, they survived and are ready to be at home within any significant collection of elite Beatles memorabilia.....$35,000






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