This is Episode 1 of Travels in Music, and today I couldn’t be happier to be talking to the world’s leading Beatles historian, and the author of Tune In: The Beatles: All These Years, Mark Lewisohn.
In today’s show I talk to Mark about what made the Beatles so special, what it’s like to interview Paul McCartney, the challenges involved in writing the definitive history of the band, and why Liverpool, England, of all places had the world’s only teenage rock music scene in the 1950s.
I remember being 6 or 7 when I fell in love with the Beatles’ music, and I quickly started to wonder what life was like across the ocean in Liverpool, why America embraced the band with such gusto in 1964, and why the Beatles were later drawn to travel to India. On today’s episode, Mark and I discuss all of these topics and more.
In this episode you’ll also learn about:
- The story behind the Beatles’ much celebrated Anthology project from an insider’s perspective
- Why Liverpool? What was happening in postwar Liverpool that allowed the Beatles to form, grow, and eventually thrive?
- How did traveling to India in 1968 change the Beatles?
I first exchanged emails with Mr. Lewisohn back in 2013 when I was working on my Master’s thesis at the University of British Columbia, which included research on the Beatles’ trips to India. I made several trips and spent several months in India collecting research materials, and offered to share some of my research with Mark as he works on the next volumes of his three-part Beatles biography. It was great to finally connect with him in real time.
As someone who has studied the band in depth for much of the last twenty years, I feel like I learned a lot from my conversation with Mark, and left with some fascinating new insights on the greatest rock and roll band in history.
Mentioned in this episode:
- Volume 1 of Mark’s biography of the Beatles, Tune In: The Beatles: All These Years
- “You Know My Name Look Up The Number” by The Beatles (Amazon / iTunes)
- Beatles tourism in Liverpool, England