Thursday, 28 February 2013

New Shop Item: 'Once Upon a Liverpool' by Maria Saunderson

Fabulous new item available in our SHOP

Once Upon A Liverpool by Maria Saunderson


P&P: £3.00 UK, £6.00 EU and £8.00 ROW

We are delighted to announce the latest edition to the BBFC shop: Once Upon a Liverpool by Maria Saunderson.  

This fabulous children's book was written by Liverpool textile artist Maria Saunderson to introduce and explain to a new younger generation, who the Beatles were and charts their rise to fame and eventual break up in an easy to read and understandable format.

It has something for all ages, very young children can look for Rigby the little flying submarine and enjoy the bright colours, older children will learn and understand who the ‘Beatles’ were and adults can enjoy seeing iconic moments reinterpreted in a unique way with subtle images from the history of the Beatles in the background.

Through beautiful and colourful images, each one a photographic reproduction (by Wing at Wings Studio) of Maria's fabric collages of the major moments in the Beatles' hectic career, the book re-tells the Beatles story in a way that is both fun and interesting for children. Each of the 12 scenes was crafted using at least 150 pieces of fabric as well as beads and sequins. The project took Maria two years to complete and was a labour of love.

Some of Maria's beautiful art on display
at the official book launch in 2012
Managing Director of The Beatles Story, Jerry Goldman, said: “This book is beautiful. It will help parents and grandparents tell the story of the Fab Four to their children and grandchildren. It really is something for all the family and the images are something else.” 

Nothing seemed to sum up this sentiment better than than two of the guests at the official book launch at Liverpool Town Hall in July 2012.  Colin Hanton attended, along with members of his family.  As the original drummer for the Quarrymen, Colin was there when musical history was made and today he was sharing his story, with the help of Maria's images, with his grand-daughter, ensuring that the story of the Beatles, and the legacy that he helped to create, was being passed on to future generations.  

The past and the future of the Beatles legacy:
Colin Hanton, with the artwork depicting the Quarrymen's
performance at St Peter's fete on July 6 1957. Beside him,
his grand-daughter proudly shows the picture of her grandad
and his mates in her signed copy of Maria's book.
The book begins, ‘Once upon a Liverpool’ and documents famous events such as when the Quarrymen played on an outdoor stage at St Peter’s church fete, the Beatles trip to Hamburg, The Sergeant Pepper album and the last performance at the Cavern. 

Heading for Hamburg!
Maria from New Brighton, said: “The Beatles’ story is epic and it’s ongoing. It was difficult to know where to start and where to end. It wasn’t until I was invited by Jerry Goldman to have a look around The Beatles Story attraction that I was able to choose specific points to focus on and most importantly where to end the book. I continuously researched it while I was stitching the illustrations, as I wanted to make sure that the details were right which on occasion has proved difficult, as facts about them seem to change on a regular basis."

“There’s one scene where the Beatles are playing on the rooftop of Apple and Ringo was wearing a red, PVC Mac. I recreated this scene for the book and noticed that the buttons on his coat were on the wrong side. After even more research, I found out that Ringo had borrowed his wife’s coat as it’d started to rain and John had borrowed Yoko Ono’s fur coat.” Maria also confessed that she would 'raid' her husband's wardrobe when she needed a certain button, or piece of material.  George, at Abbey Road, is wearing pieces cut from her husband's jeans!

This book is a must-have for Beatles fans for all ages!  Buy now for only £5.99 (+ P&P) from our shop!

The Bootleg Beatles at the Royal Albert Hall - March 5

Wednesday, 27 February 2013

The Mersey Beatles at St Basil's, Widnes

The Mersey Beatles with DJ/compere Fast Eddie 

Starts at 7.30pm

Tickets £6.00 

For tickets and to book a table ring the club on 0151 424 7155

Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Art Exhibition in Honour of George's 70th Birthday

For George
The Liverpool Academy of Arts
32 Seel Street
L1 4BE

Tuesday February 26 to Thursday March 7
Open Tuesday to Saturday from 12noon to 4pm

Two days of celebrations for George Harrison's 70th birthday in Liverpool culminated with the opening of a special art exhibition at the Liverpool Academy of Arts.

Five talented Merseyside artists -- John Chatterton, Len Ehlan, Granelli, Simon Pritchard and Denise Theophilus -- all of whom are passionate about George, presented their work showing their interpretation of George, his life and his music.

The exhibition features 70 works of art to reflect the 70 years since George was born, as well as other memorabilia and a selection of birthday cards sent for George from all over the world. The cards will be sent on to Friar Park when the exhibition closes.

The exhibition was officially opened by Spencer Leigh during a special preview on Monday, February 25.  

c. Paul Dean

Entertainment was provided by 15-year-old Francesca Davies who performed songs by the two Georges -- Harrison and Formby -- on her ukelele and banjolele.

George's love of India was represented by members of the Radha-Krishna Temple, who not only provided a sumptuous feast for those in attendance but also handed out flowers and evoked George's spirituality with their music and chanting.

For more information on the Radha-Krishna Temple, visit their website at

I'm sure that George was watching over all of us, and smiling.
c. Paul Dean

For more information on the exhibition visit the website of Liverpool Academy of Arts at or the For George website at

Photo Gallery From the Preview Night

c. Paul Dean

c. Paul Dean

c. Paul Dean

c. Paul Dean
c. Paul Dean

Monday, 25 February 2013

Liverpool Celebrates George's Birthday - At the Albert Dock

This is the second of our feature photo-essays on the celebrations in Liverpool for George's 70th birthday.

The Beatles Story arranged for this image of George to be projected onto the Albert Dock for one night only in honour of the birthday boy!

Beatles fan, Paul Dean, 'leaning on a lamp-post' with the image of George looking down ... and I bet he's smiling!

Liverpool Celebrates George's Birthday! - Photo Gallery

70 years ago George Harrison was born at 12 Arnold Grove, Liverpool.  This year, Liverpool hosted a two-day celebration of the quiet Beatle who had such a profound influence on the world.

This is the first of a series of photo-essays, sharing Liverpool's celebrations with Beatles fans around the world!

Jackie Spencer

Top Liverpool Beatles tour guide, Jackie Spencer, started the celebrations by hosting a Teddy Bear's Picnic at the Palm House in Sefton Park.  George made generous donations to the renovation project for the Palm House, and it seemed like the ideal venue to honour George and remember his love of gardening.

The highlight of the picnic was definitely the sweet treats that had come all the way from India!

The Palm House in Sefton Park

A picnic in February can be a bit chilly, so the group moved on to the Penny Lane Development Trust to join in the celebrations being held there.  The PLDT is a community centre based on Penny Lane which does sterling work for the local community as well as paying tribute to all the Beatles.  For more information, visit

Beatles Fan, Andy Joynson, making it clear who his favourite Beatle is!

Here Comes the Sun ... and the teddy bears!

The celebrations moved on to the Penny Lane Gallery, with a glass of bubbly and cake for the birthday boy!  The Gallery, located on Penny Lane, is the venue for great art exhibitions with a Beatles, music or Liverpool theme, and a must-see for any visitor to Liverpool.  For more information, visit the Gallery website

Some of the group, with teddy bears, at Penny Lane Gallery

The Mersey Beatles

The first day of celebrations concluded at the Liverpool Naval Club with the Mersey Beatles, Liverpool's favourite Beatles tribute band.  Two sets of Beatles music, brilliantly performed with passion, energy and sheer talent, made the perfect end to a day of celebrations for a very special man.

But it's not all over!  The celebrations will continue in Liverpool on Monday ... so watch this space!

Friday, 22 February 2013

Distinguished Louisiana Lithographer to Illustrate Lennon Fictionalised Biography

by Jenn Vanderslice,

Enoch Doyle Jeter
Enoch Doyle Jeter, Instructor in Fine Arts Printmaking at the University Of Louisiana at Monroe who recently led a one-day Lithography Seminar at Cork Printmakers in Cork City, Ireland has produced a series of 14 original lithographs expressly for Jude Southerland Kessler’s new work on John Lennon, She Loves You.

She Loves You is the third volume in The John Lennon Series ( and covers Lennon’s life from May 1963 to August 1964: The British Invasion of America years. It includes The Beatles’ rise to #1 in England, Europe, and America; their appearance on the Ed Sullivan program; the making of their second LP “With the Beatles,” the production of their first movie, “A Hard Day’s Night,” and the progress of their 1964 America Summer Tour. “But most of all,” Kessler stated, “it examines the complicated relationship between John and the women who loved him: his fans, his Aunt Mimi, and above all, his wife, Cynthia.”

In volume 2 of The John Lennon Series (Shivering Inside) Kessler devoted over 40 detailed pages to the making of The Beatles’ first LP, “Please Please Me.” But this time, the story of the second LP is told completely through the artistry of Jeter’s unique, detailed lithographs.

“If a picture paints a thousand words,” Kessler said, “then Doyle has supplied us with 14,000! He has created one original lithograph for each song on the LP, capturing not only the gist of the lyrics, but the rich history of the boys behind each one.”

“Never before in literature,” Kessler went on, “has a chapter been created completely by artistic illustration with no words to supplement it. Doyle’s work is its own chapter in the book. It stands strongly on its own.”

Jeter, who teaches and lectures on lithography in America and Ireland, has a special connection with Kessler. The two met when Jeter invited her to participate in the longest-running John Lennon Birthday Celebration in America, held at Jeter’s pub in Monroe, Louisiana, Enoch’s Irish Pub ( Doyle and his wife, Yvette, have lived in Monroe for 34 years. With their children, John and Molly, they have formed a close band of friends who share in the Lennon party.

The celebration – which has been ongoing since 1980 – is held each year on 9 October and has twice received the blessing of Lennon’s widow, Yoko Ono. Last year, Kessler read a tribute to John and cut the birthday cake for the festivities.

But the ties between the author and artist go even deeper. “I was reared in the lower East Side of New York City but spent my high school years, the formative years, in Bucks County, PA.” Jeter smiles. “And oddly enough, Jude lived in Bucks County as well…in Morrisville, PA. Other than Louisiana – which we both cherish – it’s the place we call home.”

Furthermore, both Kessler and Jeter are deeply Irish, and treasure their Irish roots. And therefore, both take part in Jeter’s Northeast Louisiana Celtic Fest, held every October in West Monroe, LA. (

“To pull a line from an old Everybody Loves Raymond show,” Kessler grinned, “I guess Doyle and I working together was ‘meant to be’!”

Jeter has won numerous awards for his intriguing, cutting-edge lithography. His lithographs and etchings grace many private collections in the United States, Canada, Ireland, Germany, Holland, Venezuela, and Puerto Rico. Furthermore, several of Jeter’s works grace permanent museum collections, such as the Santa Fe Museum of Fine Arts in Santa Fe, New Mexico and the Anderson Museum of Fine Arts in Roswell, New Mexico.

Doyle and his family ran a second location of Enoch’s Irish Pub in Shreveport from 1987-1990, the city where Kessler once taught high school English and where she and her husband now reside. We have so much in common,” Kessler said, “it’s spooky! Doyle and Yvette were just destined to be our friends.”

Kessler’s book will be out in late autumn 2013 and is in pre-sale right now at

Anyone preordering a book will receive the unique photography work of Kessler’s artist husband, Rande Kessler. “Rande did a gorgeous photographic art poster of ‘The Doors of Liverpool,’” Kessler explained, “capturing the front doors of each Beatle, each pub they frequented, and each important landmark. It’s really a collector’s item! It’s worth ordering the book, just to get that poster!”

The first 200 copies of She Loves You will be signed and numbered and are sure to become collector’s items with Jeter’s impressive work to tell the story of With the Beatles.

Jameson & Hills Perform Songs of the Beatles - Leeds, March 9

An upcoming "Beatles' Songs Session" Gig will be at

the HEART Centre, Headingley, Leeds
Sat 9th March 8.00pm


John's image projected onto the Albert Dock in 2010;
the Beatles Story will project an image of George
for his birthday this year.
The Beatles Story attraction is to mark what would have been the 70th birthday of George Harrison with a weekend of activities aimed at informing and entertaining thousands of visitors to the award-winning attraction.

Taking place across Saturday 23rd and Sunday 24th February, visitors will be able to meet other fans to celebrate and engage even deeper with a musical icon.

Described by many as ‘the quiet Beatle’, Harrison left the world an enduring legacy that bridges music and Eastern philosophies.

The Beatles Story will explore this legacy in many ways across the two days by:-

  • Hosting a special George workshop for visiting children in the Discovery Zone where they can learn to make origami lotus flowers in the recreation Beatles Story garden
  • Dressing The Cavern Stage with photos and flowers in tribute to George
  • Projecting a huge image of George onto the (wonder) wall of the iconic Albert Dock taken by photographer Paul Berriff
  • Allowing visitors to have their photo taken next to Beatles Story’s own waxwork statue of George
  • Playing George’s music throughout the Beatles Story
  • Giving out George’s favourite Jelly Babies to people on entry to Beatles Story

Since his untimely death in 2001, George Harrison has continued to fascinate fans from all over the world, many of whom make an annual pilgrimage to Beatles Story to learn more.  In 2011 Oscar-winning director Martin Scorsese’s documentary ‘Living in a Material World’ brought Harrison’s music and philosophies to a whole new generation.

Beatles Story will also be engaging with fans across the globe through dedicated George activity across Facebook and Twitter social media platforms.

For more information and details of ticket options visit