Friday, July 29, 2011

Mr Brian Epstein is here

July 29-August 4, 1961

The Beatles play two gigs at Blair Hall this weekend, four times at the Cavern (M,W,F lunch and W evening) with Litherland, Aintree and St John's Hall dates thrown in for good measure.

This week is the first hint that a Liverpool businessman named Brian Epstein is taking a serious interest in the local rock music scene.  On Thursday, August 3rd, Mersey Beat Magazine publishes his first record review column called "Stop the World - And Listen to Everything In It".

Brian Epstein had been born into an upper class entrepreneurial Jewish family  who had made their fortunes operating a furniture store.  Brian grew up a sensitive young man, always on the lookout for something new and interesting to occupy his  time (and keep the black dog from the door).  He had taken a special interest in the music department of the family business, which sold both musical instruments and records.  By now, he is managing his own branch  store on Whitechapel Street, called North End Music Stores, NEMS for short.  It is located a stones throw from the Cavern Club where, unbeknownst to him, the Beatles are building a loyal following of fans.  His inventory and demand tracking system (precomputer, of course) is legendary and if you want a record, he prides himself on either having it or being able to get it for you, regardless of how obscure the title.

Brian had, while sowing the wild oats of his  youth, attended the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, a prestigious acting school in London, where he had learned a little something about stagecraft and live performance.

He is a bit older and more widely experienced than the Beatles, almost 27 years old, (seems very young to me now!) and he is casting about for some way to leverage his talents and aptitudes to keep life interesting.  Perhaps writing a column for a local music newsletter would  lead to something.

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