August 18, 2019
1969 was a tremendous year, in the world generally and with The Beatles as well. We find ourselves commemorating (if not celebrating) a number of 50th anniversaries this year, among them the infamous Tate-LaBianca murders; tangentially tied to the “White Album” by Charles Manson’s (mis)reading of certain lyrics. That he was able to incite a […]
August 6, 2019
Few professional scribes received access to The Beatles like Ray Connolly. As a journalist with the Evening Standard, he found himself in the right place at the right time to cover the group during their final years. (It was to him that John confided that he’d quit the group; it was to Ray that Paul […]
August 2, 2019
Back in 2017, SATB first explored of Beatles collectors. This year, a terrific addition to Beatle literature arrived with the publication of Terry Crain’s new book, NEMS and the Business of Selling Beatles Merchandise in the U.S. 1964-1966. Terry didn’t merely catalog the merchandise of the period: instead, he methodically researched the history of the items marketed stateside, each […]
July 17, 2019
Beginning in 1978, George Harrison became drawn into a vocation he’d only dabbled in previously: filmmaker. HandMade Films came into being serendipitously, simply because he wanted to see Monty Python’s Life of Brian get made. This “accidental studio” went on to produce work of staggeringly high quality, resulting in works ranging from Time Bandits and The Long Good […]
July 1, 2019
The full story of The Beatles’ Rishikesh visit and their relationship with Maharishi Mahesh Yogi had never been explored in detail and from the inside before – until now. Susan Shumsky spent over twenty years studying TM, including seven working directly with the Maharishi. The author of 14 books, her newest – Maharishi and Me: Seeking Enlightenment with […]
June 22, 2019
In which I resume the conversation with engineer/producer Jerry Hammack, begun earlier this year. This time, our sounding board is writer/musician/engineer/producer/podcaster/returning guest Anthony Robustelli. We discuss the specifics of their studio work throughout 1967 and into 1968, encompassing Magical Mystery Tour and then some. Jerry’s third volume of The Beatles’ Recording Reference Manual series was recently […]
May 31, 2019
The first break-out star at Apple Records was, of course, Mary Hopkin with “Those Were The Days.” A huge international hit, it typed her as a cheery ingénue, somewhat removed from her folk roots (and aspirations). Other hits followed, diverging from her preferred stylistic path, until her second Apple album, Earth Song / Ocean Song (produced […]
May 25, 2019
Apple Jam is a Seattle-based recording and performing outfit specializing in Beatles music; specifically, songs written by Lennon-McCartney and Harrison that, for the most part, went unrecorded/released as “Beatles” product. My guests today are Richard Lovrovich, Jaekal Tristram and Doug Kilishek. In this conversation, they discuss the curation of obscure Beatles material: the selection process (what […]
May 17, 2019
It is not a unique observation to note that bandleader Duke Ellington and The Beatles shared some commonalities, creativity-wise. They were unclassifiable musically, and a great deal of what made their art magic came from the collaborative process, hardwired into their working method. My guest, musicologist Thomas Brothers, has written a terrific new book – Help: […]
April 8, 2019
Back in 2017, SATB featured a conversation with Ken Womack on the publication of volume one of his George Martin biography, Maximum Volume (here). In late 2018, volume two emerged, this one taking up the story where George Martin resumed production chores with The Beatles, this time as an independent contractor. It marked the era of […]
April 2, 2019
He’s back, and with a terrific topic: each of us choosing 7 moments in the history of The Beatles that we would’ve liked to have been around to witness as a fly on the wall. The criteria being, occasions where the history is unclear, or simply moments that would’ve been amazing to witness. This ended […]
March 27, 2019
You know him as the photographer responsible for one Beatles album cover (two in the US); their last group photo shoot, and as the official photographer on the “Get Back” / Let It Be project (his photos filled the book packaged with the original issue). But Ethan Russell also produced iconic images for the Rolling […]
March 22, 2019
This is the second part of a discussion begun with Doug Sulpy (co-author of Drugs, Divorce and a Slipping Image/Get Back), this time with blogger Dan Rivkin. His blog, They May Be Parted, is a detailed examination of the Nagra tapes of the “Get Back”/Let It Be project. Dan adds detail, analysis and context to the […]
March 9, 2019
You know him as the human music stand kneeling before John Lennon for “Dig A Pony” during the rooftop session of January 1969. But Kevin Harrington was much more than that: coming into The Beatles’ orbit beginning in January 1966 as an office boy at NEMS; an employee of the Saville Theatre the following year, […]
February 24, 2019
Back in 2000, Chip Madinger and Mark Easter produced an exhaustive study of every extant recording of the solo Beatles, up to that very year: studio sessions, live concerts and broadcasts. Eight Arms To Hold You was a one-of-a-kind detailed examination of what the four ex-Beatles did musically, when and with whom. The book went out […]
February 12, 2019
Two words: Peter Jackson Remember the “Winter of Discontent”? My guest today is Doug Sulpy, co-author (with Ray Schweighardt) of Drugs, Divorce and a Slipping Image (AKA Get Back: The Unauthorized Chronicle of the Beatles’ “Let It Be” Disaster.) With the announcement of the long-desired fresh look at the Let It Be project being in the works, we […]
January 24, 2019
It’s the return of Jerry Hammack – creator of the Beatles Recording Reference Manual series. Volume 3, covering the end of 1966 (“Strawberry Fields Forever”) through the whole of Sgt. Pepper (plus Magical Mystery Tour) has just been published. Producer Ben Rowling and I discuss the high level of studio innovation that typified the post-touring era, and though […]
January 13, 2019
In a slight departure from the SATB norm, I present an account of the career of a Beatles peer: session guitarist Vic Flick, whose work appeared in 1960s music charts alongside The Beatles. Every Fab fan will know his soundtrack work on their first two United Artist films, but in addition to this, he contributed […]
January 4, 2019
First off, listeners: kindly indulge the first 15 minutes, which represents an audio document of 1968 (January through end of August). It’s one thing to know what happened that year, but it’s quite another to hear the immediacy of actual sound, both news and music. 1968 was a convulsive stream of history and it is with […]
December 25, 2018
The long-awaited conversation with producer Chris Thomas, recorded at the White Album Symposium in Monmouth University. Audio deficiencies with the sound due to the electrical system; deficiencies in my voice due to an ill-timed tribute to George’s Dark Horse Tour. Thanks to Ben Rowling Joe Rapolla, Dr. Kenneth Womack and everyone at Monmouth University.
December 24, 2018
In general, you can tell how well a conversation went by how long the show runs. At just past the two hour mark, you get an idea of how well things went with Lon Van Eaton, one-time Apple recording artist and protege of George Harrison. In addition to being one half of the Van Eaton […]
December 8, 2018
As a sonic landscape to accompany your holiday season demands: driving places – online shopping – gift-wrapping, and so forth, SATB presents an end-of-year look at the highlights of this years’ shows. We had some terrific guests this year, ranging from notables like Randy Bachman and the Mona Lisa Twins to SATB favorites like Erin […]
November 30, 2018
In the 2nd of a quartet of shows recorded (in part) at the White Album Symposium at Monmouth University (as well as the 2nd in a trio of shows covering Apple in its 50th year), I speak with my friend, Ken Mansfield: former manager of US operations of Apple, as well as author of several […]
November 22, 2018
In the first of what will be a series of shows originating from the White Album symposium held at Monmouth University in West Long Branch, New Jersey, I am presenting my opening remarks, followed by a brief Q&A. For those who couldn’t attend, it gives you a good flavor of how these events go down. […]
November 5, 2018
You may know his name from his years on tour and in the studio with Joe Jackson; possibly from his series of solo projects (Swinging Guitar Sounds of Young America Vol 1-3, plus The Coyote and two Christmas collections – find them here). But this multi-instrumentalist has been a lifelong Beatle fan, and as he says here, […]
October 25, 2018
If all you know about this sister act out of Austria is an array of Beatles covers on Youtube, then you don’t know the Mona Lisa Twins. They are the present-day embodiment of the ripples of waves begun when the Beatles entered popular consciousness over half a century ago; a manifestation of what Geoff Baker […]
October 18, 2018
There is no real perfection, a much-loved artist once sang. But in Beatle world, where excellence is the common consensus, the act of assessing how well they executed their art as distinguished by individual releases is – at the very least – ripe for a thoughtful discussion. Returning to the show is TV writer Jeff […]
October 9, 2018
Ever wonder what the lives of those screaming legions of fans were like? Wonder no more: today, I speak with award-winning cartoonist, Carol Tyler, whose memoir of her Beatles adoration, Fab 4 Mania: A Beatles Obsession and the Concert of a Lifetime, has just been published. The book builds on the diary that she kept […]
September 29, 2018
At last: SATB takes on a long-desired topic, comparing and contrasting two of the biggest acts out of the UK during the 1960s. Quantifying art is a fool's errand, yet here we are because we can't help ourselves.
September 5, 2018
As an end-of summer two-fer, SATB presents a double bill: two different ways of “seeing” the Beatles. First, on the 50 years since the Mad Day Out, my guest is photographer Tom Murray; author of the newly-published book, The Beatles: Tom Murray’s Mad Day Out –  a colorful revisit to a summer’s day when all was […]
August 9, 2018
In this extra-length edition, I speak with Dr. Bob Hieronimus and Laura Cortner. The two have worked together for decades researching the Yellow Submarine film; interviewing every available participant in its creation.
July 20, 2018
Television writer Jeff Martin makes his third appearance on the show, this time focusing the conversation on one of his vocations – playing keyboards in a band – and how The Beatles (Paul mainly) utilized an array of instruments in the studio: piano – electric piano – organ – harmonium – Mellotron – synthesizer, and […]
July 9, 2018
In which we welcome back to the show historian Erin Torkelson Weber. In this episode, we pick up where we left off; this time discussing older canon works like Ian MacDonald’s Revolution in the Head and Peter Doggett’s You Never Give Me Your Money; (also Peter McCabe’s outdated Apple To The Core and the problematic memoir of […]
June 19, 2018
It isn’t often that we are given a firsthand account from somebody who set in motion events that literally changed the world. But there we are and here it is: Michael Hill was a classmate and friend of John Lennon’s, beginning at age 5. A keen observer and articulate narrator, he has set his recollections […]
June 8, 2018
It was 45 years ago that Beatle confidant and Apple Press Officer Derek Taylor published his first memoir, As Time Goes By.
May 22, 2018
50 years: in the first of what will be a series throughout this year and next, we examine the start-up of The Beatles' Apple enterprise
May 10, 2018
To call the stunningly-talented musician/singer/songwriter a "Beatles sideman" is to sell short his tremendous gifts and the less tangible affect he had on the group when they most needed a spark plug.
May 3, 2018
Ben Rowling and I resume our conversation with the author of The Beatles Recording Reference Manuals series. In this episode, we talk gear (amps and guitars), as well as examine some long-held beliefs about certain recordings. Check out Jerry’s series here.
April 28, 2018
Even if we don’t write them down, we all make lists (if only mentally). Back in June 2017, rock journalist Bill Wyman boldly committed his ranking of every Beatles canon recording from worst to best. It was a move certain to stir the pot of debate, and so it did. On this show, we discussed not […]
April 21, 2018
In which we (Ben Rowling and I) discuss the Beatle's approach to their work in the studio:
April 5, 2018
In the first of what will, over time, serve as a commemoration of the 40th anniversary of the All You Need is Cash TV film, I spoke with director Gary Weis.
March 27, 2018
Returning as a SATB guest is Jeff Martin, whom you will remember from 122 – The Simpsons episode. In addition to his writing on that show as well as Late Night with David Letterman beginning in the 1980s, he is also a musician and therefore speaks the language of The Beatles specifically, as well as creativity generally. […]
March 9, 2018
Yes, he’s the guy who sang “Takin’ Care of Business” and “You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet,” but if that’s all you know about this accomplished artist, then you are missing out on a lot. Randy has penned #1 hit singles for two different recording acts; toured as an All Starr; hosted a popular radio show […]
February 23, 2018
Now that there’s been an ending to the story, it seems like a good time to examine the intersection between artists who stood for love and peace and a career criminal/sociopath who will forever be tied to them, by virtue of the demented “gospel” ripped straight from their albums. It may be unfathomable from this […]
January 15, 2018
Picking up where we left off, we discuss an array of topics and songs, mostly adhering to the “acoustic Beatles” theme. (For some reason, we seemed to gravitate to the White Album a lot…) But there’s also much about the impact of success; the level of support the Beatles gave each other; George and the […]
January 12, 2018
Back in September, I first talked Beatles with this Renaissance man, in the context of The Beatles with The Simpsons. As you listeners will remember, Dave had a lot to say about the Beatles well beyond the parameters of that TV show. Well he’s back, and the subject we set out to discuss was the Beatles’ use […]
December 20, 2017
In 1978 – the year he joined Elvis Costello in The Attractions – bassist Bruce Thomas was personally selected by Paul McCartney to participate in the Rockestra – an all-star ensemble assembled for a pair of Back To The Egg tracks. The collective gathered onstage a year later as part of Wings’ finale at the Kampuchea […]
December 4, 2017
John once observed that, in his opinion, Paul was “…an egomaniac about everything else about himself, but his bass playing” – which was as influential as it was innovative. It is therefore a delicious irony to report the same was true of John: while he touted his status as an artist (not to mention “genius”) at every opportunity, […]
November 24, 2017
SATB began as a conversation between two Beatle friends who happened to be writers; this episode began as a conversation about being a Beatles fan in the 70s. But in both instances, some unexpected twists and turns along the way led to other destinations… I’d like you all to meet Andrew Vaughan – a good […]
November 2, 2017
The unexpected loss of The Heartbreakers’ leader (and “Charlie T./Muddy Wilbury”) presents an opportunity to look back on the career of the accidental supergroup: the Traveling Wilburys, whose debut album issued almost thirty years ago represented an unimaginable musical collaboration among some of rocks’s giants. Presenting their back story is rock journalist Jeff Slate (, […]
October 22, 2017
You may already know the author of Liddypool  and The Fab 104 for his meticulous research in already well-trod grounds. But with his latest work, David Bedford reveals new revelations – some of them shocking. In Finding The Fourth Beatle, David brings a fresh interpretation and critical new analysis to Beatles scholarship, going where the evidence leads him regarding the […]
October 7, 2017
In something of a departure from the usual, SATB presents a conversation with Arion Salazar, original bass player with Third Eye Blind (“Semi-Charmed Life” – “Losing A Whole Year” – “How’s It Going To Be” – “Never Let You Go”) and this year on tour with XEB. As you will hear, he is an accomplished […]
September 28, 2017
In 1989, Paul McCartney hit the road again for the first time in a decade. That same year, the longest running sitcom in US TV history debuted, and like Sir Paul, The Simpsons is still in action today. In addition to the high-calibre talent involved from day one, the show has made frequent references to […]
September 17, 2017
Our guest’s 13 year-old face has left an indelible impression upon the memory of every Beatles fan who has ever watched their debut appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show. Deb Supnik (nee Gendler), dubbed “the first fan” by director Andrew Solt,  is much more than just an attendee of The Beatles’ first live TV […]
September 5, 2017
49 years ago, The Beatles launched their Apple label with one of rock’s most successful single releases. Paul’s “Hey Jude,” backed with John’s “Revolution” – if not officially a double A-side release – surely ranks as among the finest 7″ records the group ever produced. It was also, as George observed years later, a real […]
August 29, 2017
For too many years, the role of Skiffle in The Beatles' development as artists has been glossed over or diminished.
August 21, 2017
In a recent show, we profiled a pair of Liverpudlians who witnessed the Beatles up close and personal during their ascent to greatness. This time, we feature conversations with two personas – one English, one American – who likewise had a series of most memorable encounters with The Beatles; by this time, greatness achieved. Richard […]
August 12, 2017
The first volume of a new biography detailing the life of the late Sir George Martin has just been published. Kenneth Womack has been responsible for a number of fine volumes covering aspects of the Beatles’ career, but with Maximum Volume: The Life of Beatles Producer George Martin, he takes on a figure whose background […]
August 7, 2017
A show on Beatle books is a fine idea but at the same time a little too broad: without some sort of focus, the confines of a single episode will not allow for a thorough examination.
July 31, 2017
The Beatles remain the most collected rock band on the face of the planet: records of every kind - books - art - toys - and so forth. That's just for the mainstream fandom; for the more serious collectors, there are promotional items, rare pressings, autographs, etc.
July 22, 2017
While echoes of 1967 live on this year with 50-year commemorations of Sgt. Pepper and the Summer of Love, the events of two summers later were, if anything, even more portentous as far as the Beatles’ story goes. In this episode, Richard and Robert examine one specific week: July 1 through July 9, 1969. These eight days marked the […]
July 16, 2017
Our guests in this episode - Jim Mawer and "Rita" - are not likely anyone you've ever heard of before. They've haven't written books or appeared as guest speakers at any Beatle fan gatherings.
July 6, 2017
In honor of his birthday, Richard and Robert honor Ringo by focusing an entire show on his drumming (as well as that of his predecessor). Aboard for the discussion is Gary Astridge, Ringo’s drum historian and archivist, as well as Alex Cain and Terry McCusker, authors of Ringo Starr and The Beatles Beat. We’ll […]
June 30, 2017
July 6, 1957 is the day that should be commemorated in Beatledom for all that sprang from it: not only in terms of the Beatles' career,
June 26, 2017
In another listener suggested topic, Richard and Robert examine this aspect of song craft and how it evolved in Beatles recordings over time.
June 20, 2017
Suggested by a listener, your hosts, Robert and Richard divulge their post-Beatles desert island discs (and books and videos, too) favorites, in a follow-up to their earlier Beatles Desert Island Discs show.
June 10, 2017
In this special extended episode, Richard and Robert take listeners back to 1964 and the life-changing live TV debut of The Beatles in America before 73 million.
June 2, 2017
In what's likely to be the first of a series of Sgt. Pepper discussions, Robert and Richard attempt to sort out their feelings toward a most complicated and singular Beatles release
May 30, 2017
Before you roll your eyes, take a second: in this special episode, Richard and Robert dissect what is easily the most polarizing recording of The Beatles' entire canon: the musique concrète produced by John, with assistance from Yoko and George, issued on their wildly expansive 1968 self-titled double album.
May 22, 2017
Said Allmusic about our guest: "He writes songs that are melodic, hooky and emotionally true, and he sings and plays them with an honesty and force that still finds room for humor without venom.
May 13, 2017
Are The Beatles on their way out now?," asked The Daily Sketch. Said a critic at The Sunday Mirror: "They have, to put it bluntly, goofed.
May 6, 2017
Setting aside the thematic full album works like Run Devil Run, Rock 'n' Roll or Sentimental Journey, the former Beatles recorded a fair amount of material written by others.
April 29, 2017
In this episode, Richard and Robert examine the myriad ways their work was re-imagined and compiled: from Greatest to Rarities to 1, from Alpha-Omega to Reel Music.
April 20, 2017
Throughout the course of their career, The Beatles freely tapped the talents of a number of outside musicians to add color to their musical palette.
April 14, 2017
Comedy was an aspect of The Beatles' personas that came through loud and clear from day one. In this milestone episode, Richard and Robert discuss the comedic influences on the group
April 4, 2017
Ten years after The Beatles' North American debut, at least three former members of the group battled an array of personal challenges.
March 25, 2017
Like all successful artists, The Beatles drew from sources all over the place, some obvious; some not so much. In this detailed discussion
March 20, 2017
It is a sign of the esteem that this musical icon was held by The Beatles that they performed more songs penned by him than any other single artist. Chuck Berry's shadow looms large: as a performer - as a songwriter - as a guitarist.
March 12, 2017
Covering the period of John's lifetime, Richard and Robert examine the recordings produced by the formerly Fab foursome and how their individual artistry contributed to each other's work.
March 3, 2017
This episode features Robert and Richard in conversation with singer/songwriter Ann Wilson from Heart, who reveals how her deep love for The Beatles set her and sister Nancy on their life path from childhood.
February 22, 2017
In this special expended edition of SATB, Richard and Robert sit down with Mark Lewisohn to review the life and times of the Beatles' first manager (yes, manager), who passed away late last year.
February 17, 2017
Half a century ago, The Beatles ushered in the second half of their career - the studio years - with this landmark double A-side release. Though the single's commercial fortunes might not have reflected it,
February 11, 2017
In which Richard and Robert trace the rather momentous events of February 11th (give or take) throughout the entirety of The Beatles' career.
February 4, 2017
What if the events of December 8, 1980 played out completely differently and somehow, an unscathed John Lennon - bereft of an obstructions - was able to join his former bandmates in a live concert situation; perhaps more than one?
January 27, 2017
Within the Beatles, there were any number of complex personal dynamics. Those between the group's lead guitarist and bassist were among the convoluted: the Pisces fish vs. Gemini twin.
January 21, 2017
Not what you might think: collations of solo Beatle songs, if they'd been recorded for collective Beatle albums.
January 14, 2017
Last year's Pure McCartney compilation set stirred some debate among fans: how could a career spanning 46 years and over 500 recordings be adequately compressed down to 67 tracks?
January 6, 2017
The New Years Day 1962 showcase at Decca Records in London did not pan out as The Beatles and Brian Epstein had hoped. But the decision to turn down the Beatles has long been regarded in rock history as one of the most bone-headed executive decisions ever made.
December 31, 2016
In this year-end special, Richard and Robert took a look back at some of the Beatle-related events of 2016: the new releases - the films - the tours - the anniversaries - the passings.
December 20, 2016
The Beatles' 1967 self-produced TV special/film has been pilloried from day one as their first critical disaster; a creative overreach that critics saw as proof of how lost they were when operating out of their element.
December 8, 2016
It has been 36 years since the December night when we lost John. On this show, Robert and Richard discuss the array of musical tributes to the slain former Beatle that came from peers and admirers alike, some many years later.
December 1, 2016
For an artist with such a deep and diverse catalog of top-flight material, George remains "the Quiet Beatle" - as his most familiar songs seem to be those from two albums in particular (while the remaining eight are routinely overlooked).
November 25, 2016
It occurred to us, as it must have with everyone else, that the release of Eight Days A Week really called for an accompanying soundtrack, or at least a parallel collection of music spanning the whole of The Beatles' documented live performing career.
November 17, 2016
At the suggestion of Executive Producer Rick Wey, Richard and Robert discuss "the Kinfauns Tapes" (or "the Esher Demos"): 27 new songs composed by John, Paul and George mostly in Rishikesh,
November 14, 2016
Reminisce with Robert and Richard through a post-Beatles year where residual mania was still rampant, taking the form of two motion pictures - two television specials - two albums from ex-Beatles -
November 4, 2016
Given the imminent wind-down of the current political season, Richard and Robert thought it timely to examine the political interests connected to The Beatles, both during and after their collective career.
October 27, 2016
In this episode, Robert and Richard explore mortality as experienced by the members of the Beatles: friends, family, acquaintances
October 21, 2016
In this episode, Richard and Robert talk with the host of the Multitrack Meltdown podcast, author/musician Anthony Robustelli (I Want To Tell You: Volume 1 1962/1963; Steely Dan FAQ).
October 14, 2016
Some day Robert and Richard will devote a show to our favorite covers of songs written BY the Beatles, but in this 90-minute episode, we run down some of our favorite songs written by other artists that they recorded or performed;
October 7, 2016
In this episode, Richard and Robert chat with Chip Madinger, co-author of Lennonology: Strange Days Indeed - A Scrapbook of Madness. Chip is also the co-author (with Mark Easter) of the acclaimed Eight Arms To Hold You: The Solo Compendium. (2000).
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