Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Penny Lane Gallery – the art of music – the music of art

In the Beatles song Penny Lane the barber had an exhibition of photographs.

Today, visitors to Penny Lane in Liverpool can visit the Penny Lane Gallery and view a fabulous selection of all kinds of art with a musical theme.

Each piece either has a connection to Liverpool or to music.  

There is a large selection of Beatle-themed pieces, as well as a range of artwork from some of the world’s leading musicians.

The featured exhibition changes regularly, so there is always something new to see!

Upcoming exhibitions include "Shadowlands - Liverpool at Night" (May 25 to July 1), a collection from Liverpool's own Gerard Fleming that focuses on Liverpool’s amazing architecture and how it transforms in the dead of night, fog, and snow.  Anthony Brown, whose work includes the '100 heads' of famous Liverpudlians including all four Beatles, will be featured from July 5 to August 12.  Then, from August 16 to October 14, the work of legendary photographer Bill Zygmant will be exhibited at the gallery!  Watch this space for more detailed information on these, and other exhibitions.

As well as amazing art, the gallery has a selection of souvenirs for sale, including hand-crafted soap that is made on the premises.

Christine Colvin is the founder and curator of the Penny Lane Gallery.  She says: "It’s always been a dream of mine to own my own gallery. Music and art are my main passions, and being a Liverpudlian, where better to create the fusion than here on world famous Penny Lane.  So, in 2011, I took the plunge, sold my house, and made my dream happen! Do call in if you find yourself in the city. There’s a warm welcome waiting for you, plus of course, some fabulous art and photography!"

For more information on the Gallery, visit the website at: 

Monday, 21 May 2012

Beatles Stories - Review and Competition




LIVERPOOL (Liverpool One); LONDON (Kensington); MANCHESTER (Printworks)

Director/producer Seth Swirsky is a singer/ songwriter whose songs have been recorded by artists like Air Supply, Al Green and Celine Dion. He has been a massive Beatles fan since the 60s, and heard so many people telling their stories of meeting The Beatles, that he decided to embark on a path of interviewing famous actors and musicians who have original stories to tell. 

Swirsky has spent the last 7 years researching, interviewing and producing this new movie, which is being shown in three UK Odeon cinemas on 6th June (Liverpool, Manchester and London), and British Beatles Fan Club members have the chance to win some fabulous prizes.  One lucky winner will win lunch or dinner for two people (including transport within London) with Seth Swirsky!  We also have 5 pairs of tickets to give away for each of the three premiere locations (see below).


Review by David Bedford:

The film is a fascinating compilation of interviews with a cast of Beatles people like Tony Bramwell, Rod Davis, Sir George Martin, Norman “Hurricane” Smith, plus Denny Laine, Iris Caldwell, Nancy Lee Andrews, May Pang, Klaus Voorman, Victor Spinetti and Joey Molland. They have some great stories, the type that don’t always make the cut in documentaries, and provide an fascinating insight into the Beatles-family and life with the Fab Four.

But almost as interesting are the times that other artists and actors met with various members of the Beatles, and how they still recall their encounter years later. Screen legends like Sir Ben Kingsley, and Jon Voight, celebrities in their own right, speak in glowing terms of the genius of The Beatles, and how meeting them left a lasting impression on them: they aren’t talking as celebrities, but fans, and Swirsky manages to ask the right questions to bring a gleam to the eyes of these stars, as if it were you or I meeting out heroes. I also enjoyed the tales from some of the musicians and singers who worked with them or encountered the Fabs during their career. I particularly enjoyed Smokey Robinson recalling how it was such an honour that The Beatles openly acknowledged the influence of Motown, and of course they recorded and performed many Motown songs, with Robinson’s “You Really Got a Hold On Me” being a regular in their set list. There are contributions too from The Hollies’ Graham Nash and one half of one of the greatest duos in musical history, Art Garfunkel.

Of course, one of The Beatles’ greatest competitors in the 60s was The Beach Boys, and Brian Wilson shares some of this thoughts with us, and how important that competition between the two groups inspired them to greater heights and to attain musical perfection.

One of my favourite stories comes from Chris Carter, DJ on “Breakfast with The Beatles”, when he came to interview Paul McCartney, and how that became an honour for him, but also how great Paul was with him as they chatted live on air.

There are so many highlights, but I don’t want to spoil the fun because this is a brilliant documentary film that has been assembled by a Beatles fan, for Beatles fans, and is a unique insight into the impact those four lads from Liverpool had, and still have, on the friends and celebrities they met along the way.

In our exclusive competition, the British Beatles Fan Club has five pairs of tickets to give away for each of the venues hosting the premiere, plus one lucky winner in London will a chance to win a lunch or dinner with Seth Swirsky, in London.

To enter, simply answer this question:  Iris Caldwell, who was interviewed for the film, was the first girlfriend of which of the Beatles?

Full details of how to enter are below:

Beatles Stories Contest Rules

Who can enter? 
Members of the British Beatles Fan Club who are in good standing only ( membership number is required to enter)

Only 1 entry per person please.  Duplicates will be ignored.

Contest dates: 

  • Email Entries can be accepted until Midnight UK time on Thursday May 31st
  • Postal entries must be received in the PO Box in Croydon by postal delivery on Thursday May 31st
  • Winners will be notified on June 1st  via email or soon after if no email is provided
  • Tickets will be posted to confirmed winners by June 2nd

There will be 16 prizes awarded in total as detailed below:
  • Lunch or dinner for two with Seth Swirsky in London (including return travel costs within London) 
  • 5 pairs of tickets to the Beatles Stories for June 6th at 9pm at the Liverpool One Odeon
  • 5 pairs of tickets to the Beatles Stories for June 6th at 9pm at the Manchester Printworks Odeon
  • 5 pairs of tickets to the Beatles Stories for June 6th at the London Kensington Odeon

How to enter
The following information is required to enter the contest

  • Your Name
  • Your BBFC Membership number
  • Which venue (only 1 choice permitted): Liverpool, Manchester or London
  • Your email address
  • Your telephone number
  • Your postal address (to send the tickets to if you win)
  • Answer to the question about Iris Caldwell
 You may send the above information to us either email or post. See contest dates above and make sure you get your entry in by the deadlines.

Email your entry to info@britishbeatlesfanclub.co.uk and put Beatles Stories Contest in the subject line,
Post it to:  
BBFC Publishing
Beatles Stories Contest
PO Box 1766
Croydon CR9 1EN
United Kingdom
How the winners will be selected

Winners will be selected randomly by venue.  There will be six winners in London (dinner prize + 5 pairs of tickets) and five winners for Liverpool/Manchester repsectively.

Meanwhile back in Penny Lane

There beneath the blue suburban skies

In the song Penny Lane, Paul sang about a community. Today, the spirit of his song lives on in the work being carried out by the Penny Lane Development Trust.

The PLDT with Dovedale Towers in the background

The PLDT is a registered charity. Their aim is to work within the local community to promote a safe and healthy place to live and work. They work with all groups in the community by providing a variety of innovative activities and projects. In addition to this, they are committed to conserving the environment and sharing their experience with others. After all, as they say, Penny Lane is not just any lane!

The PLDT does not just want to serve the local community though, they also want to welcome Beatle fans from around the world and allow them to share a part of the place that inspired the Beatles. Visitors are always welcome -- if the gates aren't open, just ring the doorbell. 

Inside, the centre there's a wonderful exhibition area, featuring rare photos of early performances by the Quarrymen (donated by Rod Davies), and a letter of support from Paul's brother, Mike:

There's also a miniature version of the PLDT, lovingly hand-made and donated by Jude Inglis:

The grounds are beautiful, and include gardens dedicated to George and John ... as well as Ringo's Octopus' Garden! 

You can see the fabulous mural -- the Wonderwall:

And you can sign the sign the wall and therefore be a part of Penny Lane forever.

There's also a picnic area where you can sit and enjoy the surroundings, or the lovely butties and cakes that you can buy from the Penny Lane Cake Shop (feature in the Free As A Bird video) across the road.

St Barnabas Church, where Paul was a choirboy, in the
The PLDT does request that all visitors either make a donation to the charity, or buy some of the wonderful souvenirs that are available (and which can only be purchased on site). 

For more information about this wonderful charity, click here

Saturday, 19 May 2012

Photos: Paul at LIPA - May 17 2012

Paul visited LIPA on Thursday to conduct his annual masterclass and conduct a Q&A session with the students. The BBFC's Donna Jackson was outside when he left, and managed to snap a few pictures.

NB: All photos c. Donna Jackson and are used here with permission.  Do not download or reproduce without the express permission of the BBFC or the copyright holder.

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Liverpool Entertains -- IPO and the Mersey Beatles

This week, Liverpool will once again live up to the label, frequently quoted by Paul McCartney, as the centre of the creative universe.

Today, the International Pop Overthrow Festival begins -- a week of fabulous live music in iconic venues such as the Cavern Club and Eric's.

As the IPO website explains: The purpose of International Pop Overthrow is two-fold: one aim is to give every worthy band who’d like to play their music in a festival atmosphere the chance to do so, and the other is to bring pop music the attention it so richly deserves. We have made great strides to that end, garnering press in several noteworthy papers in each city in which we hold the festival, and creating a very positive buzz about pop music within the inner circles of major labels. We’re looking forward to the very real possibility that a number of bands who have played IPO will grab the brass ring and receive major label deals.

For full details on the schedule for this year's IPO Liverpool, click here

But Liverpool has not forgotten about its Beatles fans this weekend.  While the Cavern is buzzing to the sounds of the best in current pop, Liverpool's own Fab Four, the Mersey Beatles will perform at the Picket with a two-hour show covering the full Beatles catalogue.  Tickets are available at the Beatles Shop, Mathew Street, or contact the Mersey Beatles by clicking here to reserve your ticket now!

Monday, 14 May 2012

Beatles Items at Auctions

Some of you may have seen posts over the internet or on facebook about the forthcoming auction at Kerry Auction Rooms in Ireland.

One of the prize lots is a an original Aer Lingus inflight menu, from November 1 1963, which the auction house claims was signed by all four members of the band for one of the flight attendants. The estimate on this item is between 4000 and 6000 euros.

However, as some of our eagle-eyed members pointed out when they first saw the news of this item, the signatures are not all that they appear. At least two Beatles experts, including the BBFC's own Pete Nash, have confirmed that Paul's signature was not done by Macca.

It was, in fact, signed by John!

As soon as we realised, the BBFC contacted Kerry Auction Rooms, but the listing has not been changed.

In this case, the buyer will still receive a treasured piece of Beatles memorabilia, but it also serves as a warning. If you are considering buying an expensive item from anywhere, it is always worth getting a second opinion to verify authenticity and provenance. A good seller or auction house will not mind if you do this, particularly for items that are valued at thousands of pounds!

Indeed, if you are considering purchasing a set of autographs from auction, the recommendation of the BBFC is that you wait for the Beatles Auction that takes place in Liverpool in August (during Beatle Week).  For more details on this auction, visit the website by clicking here


It's come to our attention that the Kerry Auction Rooms are implying that the experts that we consulted do not know what they're talking about.  As further evidence for our conclusions, check out this website: http://beatlesautographs.com/Solo-JohnLennonImages2.htm
It shows a full set of Beatle autographs done by John, and the 'Paul' signature looks very familiar to us.

Remember, the point of our post was that any GOOD auction house will allow the buyer to independently verify any of the items bought.  

Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Photo Exhibition by Bill Orchard


26th May to 23rd June 2012
Hayletts Gallery Maldon Essex CM9 5PJ

Encapsulating The Swinging '60s and '70s including images of The Rolling Stones, The Beatles and David Bowie, Bill Orchard was a major part of the Pop scene in the 1960s and 1970s albeit behind the lens of a camera. 

During the swinging1960s, all the bands and pop singers wanted to be seen out with photographers. There was a tremendous buzz around musicians and London was hip, so it made his job both fun and a little easier than it might be today.

Orchard worked for major publications like Today, The Telegraph, The Mail, and The Mirror, and for TV companies especially as the weekly photographer for Ready Steady Go. 

He had the privilege of touring alongside many A list bands including two years with The Beatles, and regularly with The Rolling Stones. 

This unique time give him the opportunity to capture an artist/group whilst relaxing, portraying the very essence of their personalities in addition to creating exciting iconic photographs.

Bill is generously donating a large proportion of the profits from the sale of the prints to The Helen Rollason Cancer Charity in loving memory of his wife Isabel and as a thank you for all the good work they do. Hayletts Gallery will be also making a donation to the Charity.
For more information on the exhibition, or if you are interested in buying one of the limited edition prints, visit the Hayletts Gallery website: http://www.haylettsgallery.com/ or telephone the Gallery on 01621 851669.

NB: All images copyright Bill Orchard and used here with permission. Do not download or reproduce without the express permission of Hayletts Gallery.

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

The Trembling Wilburys - May 27, London

Book Review: FOOD - Mary McCartney

Review by Ernie Sutton

FOOD: Vegetarian Home Cooking by Mary McCartney

Published by Chatto & Windus London

ISBN 978-0-701-18625-8

Paul and Linda’s daughter Mary is a renowned photographer in her own right, but here we have a new cook book, hot on the heels of the Meat Free Monday cookbook.

Mary, by her own admission, is first and foremost a photographer, and this book combines her skills as a photographer and cook all in one.

There are family photographs from the early 1970’s in Scotland where Mary developed her passion for food.

As a cookbook this offers uncomplicated recipes which turn out very tasty for both vegetarians and meat eaters.

What I like about this book is that it has some great recipes and includes cooking notes and conversion tables for oven temperatures into relevant gas marks, weight from ounces to grams and liquid measures from Fluid ounces to Millilitres, something many cook books don’t offer. Having grown up with these older measures and not “gone metric yet” as they say, this is a welcome addition.

The book has a wonderful introduction from Mary explaining how the book came about and the influence of her mum in her early years. Mary loves to cook. The book is broken down into 6 areas of food- Breakfast and Brunch, Snacks and Sandwiches, Soups Salads and Starters, Mains, Basics and Sides, Desserts and Baking. There is something here for everyone.

The book shows recipes that are simple to make and many have photographs, taken by Mary, of what the finished article should look like.

For the meat eaters there are alternative recipes for food such as BBQ Sauce and Sage and Onion Roast. In fact the entire book has some fantastic food ideas, and having tried some I can vouch for that.

My favourite section is the soup section, all of which I can easily eat. There will, of course, be recipes people don’t like- that is only natural, but the vast majority here are very, very enjoyable and Mary has followed in her mother’s footsteps to produce a wonderful cook book.

Ticket To Write Festival and Competition

Beatles fans who have a way with words can show how the Fab Four have inspired them – and they could win a tasty £150 for their efforts.

The Ticket to Write Festival will stage five specially selected new short plays about the group in a script-in-hand showcase to be held in Liverpool in July. The best three of these will be rehearsed and fully staged in a final in August. This is an important 50th anniversary year for The Beatles and is beinng celebrated by many events in Liverpool and elsewhere.

The Festival organisers are holding a competition for new original short plays in July and August this year about the Fab Four to be staged in Liverpool, UK.
For full details on the festival, the competition and how to enter, visit the Ticket to Write website at: www.acedrama.co.uk

The closing date for entries is June 25

The organisers stress that they are keen to attract writers from as wide a field as possible.

Monday, 7 May 2012

Yellow Submarine on Blu-Ray and DVD

Once upon a time…or maybe twice…there was an unearthly paradise called Pepperland… 

The Beatles’ classic 1968 animated feature film, Yellow Submarine, has been digitally restored for DVD and Blu-ray release on June 4 in the UK and June 5 in North America. The film’s songtrack album will be reissued on CD on the same date. 

Currently out of print, the film has been restored in 4K digital resolution for the first time by Paul Rutan Jr. and his team of specialists at Triage Motion Picture Services and Eque Inc. Due to the delicate nature of the hand-drawn original artwork, no automated software was used in the digital clean-up of the film’s restored photochemical elements. This was all done by hand, frame by frame. 

Bonus features for the Yellow Submarine DVD and Blu-ray include a short making-of documentary titled “Mod Odyssey” (TRT: 7:30), the film’s original theatrical trailer, audio commentary by producer John Coates and art director Heinz Edelmann, several brief interview clips with others involved with the film, storyboard sequences, 29 original pencil drawings and 30 behind-the-scenes photos. Both Digipak packages will include reproductions of animation cels from the film, collectible stickers, and a 16-page booklet with a new essay by Yellow Submarine aficionado John Lasseter (Chief Creative Officer, Walt Disney and Pixar Animation Studios).

Lasseter writes in his essay, “As a fan of animation and as a filmmaker, I tip my hat to the artists of Yellow Submarine, whose revolutionary work helped pave the way for the fantastically diverse world of animation that we all enjoy today.”

Directed by George Dunning, and written by Lee Minoff, Al Brodax, Jack Mendelsohn and Erich Segal, Yellow Submarine began its voyage to the screen when Brodax, who had previously produced nearly 40 episodes of ABC’s animated Beatles TV series, approached The Beatles’ manager Brian Epstein with a unique vision for a full-length animated feature.

Yellow Submarine, based upon a song by John Lennon and Paul McCartney, is a fantastic tale brimming with peace, love, and hope, propelled by Beatles songs, including “Eleanor Rigby,” “When I’m Sixty-Four,” “Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds,” “All You Need Is Love,” and “It’s All Too Much.” When the film debuted in 1968, it was instantly recognised as a landmark achievement, revolutionising a genre by integrating the freestyle approach of the era with innovative animation techniques.

Inspired by the generation’s new trends in art, the film resides with the dazzling Pop Art styles of Andy Warhol, Martin Sharp, Alan Aldridge and Peter Blake. With art direction and production design by Heinz Edelmann, Yellow Submarine is a classic of animated cinema, featuring the creative work of animation directors Robert Balser and Jack Stokes with a team of animators and technical artists.

“I thought from the very beginning that the film should be a series of interconnected shorts” remembered Edelmann. “The style should vary every five minutes or so to keep the interest going until the end.” These styles included melding live-action photography with animation, 3-dimensional sequences and kaleidoscopic “rotoscoping” where film is traced frame by frame into drawings. The entire process took nearly two years, 14 different scripts, 40 animators and 140 technical artists, ultimately producing a groundbreaking triumph of animation.

On April 24, Candlewick Press will release a new, compact hardcover edition of the Yellow Submarine picture book, a read-aloud journey for the whole family. Featuring the lighthearted wit of the film’s script alongside original artwork from the movie that has charmed children and adults through several generations, the beautiful, 40-page book will be sold by retailers everywhere and on the Beatles Store (www.thebeatles.com). An interactive digital version of the book is also available as a free download on Apple's iBookstore for iPad, iPhone and iPod touch at www.iTunes.com/TheBeatles.

Production credits

Running Time: 89 minutes
Director - George Dunning
Producer - Al Brodax
Screen story - Lee Minoff
Screenplay - Lee Minoff, Al Brodax, Jack Mendelsohn, and Erich Segal
Art Director - Heinz Edelmann
Animation directors - Robert Balser and Jack Stokes
Production Executive - John Coates
Music Producer and Supervisor - George Martin
Featuring music by The Beatles
Yellow Submarine [DVD, Blu-ray]
Feature film [TRT: 89:00]
Fully restored in 4K and presented in the original aspect ratio of 1:66-1

Audio options:
English 5.1 DTS
German 5.1 DTS
Italian 5.1 DTS
English Dolby Stereo
Original Mono
Audio Commentary – Heinz Edelmann (Art Director) and John Coates (Producer)
Subtitle languages (feature only):
English, French, German, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Polish, Finnish, Japanese

Extra features:
Mod Odyssey documentary [TRT: 7:30]
Original theatrical trailer [TRT: 3:30]
Storyboard sequences:
- Sea of Monsters (split screen footage) [TRT: 4:20]
- Battle of the Monsters [118 images]
- Pepperland [64 images]
- Paul Angelis (voice of Ringo and Chief Blue Meanie) [TRT: 1:39]
- John Clive (voice of John) [TRT: 2:03]
- David Livesey (key animator) [TRT: 1:11]
- Millicent McMillan (Heinz Edelmann’s assistant) [TRT: 1:12]
- Jack Stokes (animation director) [TRT: 3:42]
- Erich Segal (co-writer) [TRT: 1:38]
Original pencil drawings [29 images]
Behind-the-scenes photos [30 images]

Yellow Submarine Songtrack 
 1. Yellow Submarine
2. Hey Bulldog
3. Eleanor Rigby
4. Love You To
5. All Together Now
6. Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds
7. Think For Yourself
8. Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band
9. With A Little Help From My Friends
10. Baby, You're A Rich Man
11. Only A Northern Song
12. All You Need Is Love
13. When I'm Sixty Four 
14. Nowhere Man
15. It's All Too Much 


Abbey Road on the River 2012

Are you going to be anywhere near Louisville, Kentucky at the end of May? Abbey Road on the River Louisville is a huge 5 day event celebrating the Beatles with dozens of tribute bands. It repeats again at the end of August in Washington DC.

For more information visit the website at: http://www.arotr.com/

Paul McCartney - 'RAM'

The newest release in the Paul McCartney archive collection
Personally supervised by Paul
Newly remastered at Abbey Road Studios
Standard CD ● Special 2 CD ● Deluxe 4 CD + DVD Collectors’ Edition Box Set
● 180 Gram Double Vinyl ● Limited Edition Mono Vinyl ● Digital Download

RAM, originally released in May of 1971, is the only album to be credited to both Paul and Linda McCartney. The album topped the charts hitting #1 in the UK and #2 in the US. The album also gave Paul his first post-Beatles US number 1 single with ‘Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey’ and a Grammy win for Best Arrangement Accompanying Vocalists.

CD 1 – Remastered Album (Stereo)
01. Too Many People
02. 3 Legs
03. Ram On
04. Dear Boy
05. Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey
06. Smile Away
07. Heart Of The Country
08. Monkberry Moon Delight
09. Eat At Home
10. Long Haired Lady
11. Ram On
12. The Back Seat Of My Car

CD 1 – Remastered Album (Stereo)
01. Too Many People
02. 3 Legs
03. Ram On
04. Dear Boy
05. Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey
06. Smile Away
07. Heart Of The Country
08. Monkberry Moon Delight
09. Eat At Home
10. Long Haired Lady
11. Ram On
12. The Back Seat Of My Car
CD 2 – Bonus Audio
01. Another Day (previously released as a single)
02. Oh Woman, Oh Why (B-side of Another Day single)
03. Little Woman Love (B-side of Mary Had A Little Lamb single)
04. A Love For You (previously unreleased mix)
05. Hey Diddle (previously unreleased mix)
06. Great Cock And Seagull Race (previously unreleased, instrumental track)
07. Rode All Night (previously unreleased)
08. Sunshine Sometime (previously unreleased, instrumental track)
Housed in Digipak with 24 page booklet


- The original 12-track album, remastered at Abbey Road Studios
- 8 bonus audio tracks
- Remastered mono album (previously unreleased commercially)
- Remastered Thrillington album, the instrumental cover version of RAM originally released under the pseudonym of Percy ‘Thrills’ Thrillington
Bonus DVD featuring:
- Ramming (11-minute documentary on the making of RAM)
- Heart Of The Country (music video)
- 3 Legs (music video)
- Hey Diddle (Paul & Linda performing the track in Scotland, not used before in its entirety)
- Eat At Home On Tour (4 minute piece using behind the scenes footage from the 1972 European Tour with a live recording of the track Eat At Home from Groningen in Holland)
- All set within a numbered hardbound box containing a 112-page book, 32-page scrapbook, 5 prints in vintage style photographic wallet, 8 full size facsimiles of Paul’s original handwritten lyric sheets and mini photographic book of outtakes from the original album cover photo shoot.
- 24bit 96kHz high resolution audio versions of all 20 songs on the remastered album & bonus audio disc, accessed via a download code inserted on a card within the deluxe edition package.
- Plus digital-only premium membership to paulmccartney.com


- Two disc 180 gram audiophile vinyl edition remastered at Abbey Road Studios
- Includes rare & previously unreleased tracks
- Downloadable audio of the original album + bonus tracks included

- One disc LP remastered at Abbey Road Studios
- Limited Edition Numbered

- Standard, Special
- 24 bit 96kHz High Resolution
- Mastered for iTunes
- Mastered for iTunes Deluxe
Two digital-only bonus tracks will be available as part of the Mastered for iTunes Deluxe format and via paulmccartney.com:
- Eat At Home/Smile Away (Live in Groningen, 1972)
- Uncle Albert Jam
He is the most successful musician and composer in popular music history, responsible for the sale of more than 70 million units in the SoundScan era alone!