Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Graduation Day

December 18-31, 1962

To wrap up 1962, the Beatles fulfill their final contract appearance at the Star Club in Hamburg, Germany.  Of course, they are in the moment and focused on advancing their careers, so we can understand if they are less than enthusiastic about it.  With benefit of 50 years of history since, we can be allowed the luxury of nostalgia.

Long time followers of this blog will think back to the very young, untried, inexperienced band, who had recently settled on a name for themselves: the Beatles.  They made their way to Hamburg at the instigation of Allen Williams (manager of the Jacaranda student hangout in Liverpool) in August of 1960.  They made music and began to hone their performance skills in a tiny seedy former strip club known as the Indra, and dossed down behind the screen at a third run movie theatre nearby, the Bambi Kino.  Together, they learned about love, life and loss in her streets and on her stages.  As John Lennon later said, "I was born in Liverpool, but I grew up in Hamburg."

These two weeks, although they really can't be expected to appreciate it, are the final echoes of that intense educational process.  They are more than ready for the next step.  But just take a moment to look back and say a fond "danke schoen" to a founding mother, boys.

Just got word via FaceBook that Tony Sheridan, the Beatles Hamburg "Teacher" and mentor is seriously ill in Germany, where he lives.  Send some good thoughts and prayers his way.

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