Annual Beatle Convention in Liverpool.
Wednesday 21st - Tuesday 27th August 1996
What a year! The thrill of a new Beatles release after 25 years was finally realised and we at Cavern City Tours were not disappointed. We queued up with around 1,000 fans for the release of Anthology
1 as it was put on special sale at midnight by HMV. Yeah, we were there again for the release of Anthology 2 and of course we will be there for the release of Anthology 3. The only thing that disappointed us as fans, was the negative criticism that ‘Free as a Bird’ and ‘Real Love’ both endured from the British press. We loved both singles, but for those of you who attended last year’s Convention, what was spooky for us, was just how close
Instant Karma got to ‘Free as a Bird’ three month’s prior to its release. Their interpretation of John’s demo was very similar to the treatment given to the song by Paul, George and Bingo (and of course Jeff Lynne).
One result of the success of the Anthology and the subsequent TV programmes has been a massive increase in the numbers of Day Trippers (pardon the pun) to Liverpool to see sights connected with The Beatles. The Magical Mystery Tour sold out right throughout the winter months (when normally we’d be expecting maybe 10-15 customers per day). Demand was so high that Dave Jones searched the length and breadth of the country for another replica of the original Magical Mystery Tour Bus, after six months of searching he found one of only six still on the road and now have a back-up bus to satisfy demand. It has become clear as we reach the millennium, the Beatles have become firmly established as an integral part in the history of the twentieth century over and above their role as pop stars.
More and more, Cavern City Tours are dealing with general interest groups rather than just the die-hard fans. I personally remember in 1970, reading an editorial in the NME (or was it the Melody Maker?) which stated now that The Beatles have split up, it will be interesting to monitor if there is any interest in the band in five years time. If there is still interest, then The Beatles would have made the transition from mere pop stars to important cultural icons of the period. Well, it’s now 26 years since the split and interest is greater than ever before. It’s gatherings, like this one this weekend, that will ensure that the magic, the music and the memories will live on for ever more.
Please note; The advertised gigs for The Cavern Beatles and Gary Gibson have been switched due to problems beyond the control of CCT. Thanks to Gary for helping us out. ‘Gary Gibson’s Anthology’ will now perform at The Cavern on Thursday evening at 9.00pm. Prior to that gig if you arrive early on Thursday, head on down to The Cavern Pub after 2.30pm when the party will begin. Music courtesy of Billy May.
2.00pm in the Adelphi, Fridays nightclub hosts a welcome party featuring music from ‘The Mop Tops’ and support by Lawrence Gilmour’s ‘Backbeat’. Next stop at 8pm is the Philharmonic Hall (which has just reopened after a £9 million face-lift). It’s about a five minute walk from The Adelphi Hotel. We are proud to welcome America’s finest Beatle band ‘1964’ who are thrilled to play in Liverpool for the first time. Bill and Ray saw them at Charles Rosenay’s Connecticut Convention in November and after seeing them we just had to get them over for you to see and enjoy. Don’t forget to scream! By the way, thanks to Continental Airlines for helping to finance their transportation costs. ‘1964’ will be ably supported by our friends Sgt Pepper and Beatlemania. After the show for those on a bona fide CCT tour we will be partying until the wee small hours in Fridays Club in the Adelphi Hotel.
Remember to have you Merseybeatle pass and keycard from the Adelphi (or the green and maroon card issued to you if you are in another hotel) with you at all times, otherwise entry into the hotel will be impossible. Last year we received some complaints about the system but please let me reiterate.
1. This is the Adelphi’s system (not ours) and this is the only way that they can be sure that they are operating within the very stringent UK licensing laws.
2. It is for your benefit, to prevent people infiltrating your event.
10.00am-2.00pm the annual auction takes place at Central Hall, where you are assured of a good bargain. (Friday afternoon is preview day at the same venue.) But don’t be late for the Samba Party at the Cavern with three of the world’s best Beatles bands adding a Latino touch to the proceedings. If any of you are in fancy dress you could win a free weekend trip to next year’s Convention, so get your Carmen Miranda dresses on right now (and that’s just the men!). Saturday night is again the Solo Years Concert featuring Instant Karma, Bob Bartey, Chris Tassone and ‘Richie’ Alan. Undoubtedly this was last year’s highlight of the whole weekend so don’t be late! Once again after the show have your keycards at the ready together with your Merseybeatle passes to gain entry into Kamp Adelphi.
Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy (as my kids would say). This day can be summarised in one sentence “Convention, mid-day — midnight, something for everybody, madness and mayhem.” After the Convention again “Get your passes and keycards out!”
Sleep in until 10.30am, breakfast by 11.00am, be in Mathew Street area by 11.30am. After that, 130 bands in a day, on over 40 stages, should take care of your entertainment needs. The 30 pubs and four outside beer tents should take care of your thirst. England’s biggest street party is here again but this year it will be bigger and better then ever before. The atmosphere will be very special and it’s your turn to interact and mingle with the thousands of locals who now perceive the day as ‘The Party Day’ in the whole social calendar.
As soon as one carnival finishes two others begin. At 8.00pm you can take your pick between the Finale Concert at the Philharmonic featuring the incomparable Lenny Pane and orchestra, or if you’ve had your fill of Beatles (some chance) you can go to the Royal Court (pay on door) to see the ultimate copy band no way sis (isn’t it ironic, as Alanis would say: no way sis imitating Oasis, who in turn imitate The Beatles, is this a copy-copy band?), Midnight onwards is the VIP party (once again get your passport, birth certificate, room keys, car keys, front door key, driving licence, marriage certificate, green shield stamps and other assorted documentation ready to get into the Adelphi — cos without them you won’t get in!).
Well the party poopers will have gone home and the die-hards will now take over. If yellow spot parties are a thing of the past, well we will call this ‘Die Hard One’ and what a way to launch it, ‘Cavern at the Cavern’. This will not be a wind down party as yellow spot gigs have tended to be, this will be a main event. Go for it! At 6.30pm the party continues at The Cavern Pub featuring Groundpig, the best party band in Liverpool. Phew! What a weekend. If anybody feels OK by Tuesday night you are either a party animal or an out-and out bore who must have missed 80% of the goings on. True fans will need a holiday after the last six days.
Any Time At All:
If you are thirsting for more, can we suggest the following:
a) Visit the newly-opened Jacaranda (Seel Street)
b) Beatles Story
c) Ferry Cross the Mersey
d) ‘Sgt Peppers’ Play at the Everyman (all week)
e) ‘In My Life’ at The Playhouse (all week)
O Denny Lane Southport Theatre Monday
g) Cavern or Cavem Pub every night
h) Blue Angel (Seel Street)
i) Magical Mystery Tour (everyday from 2.20 Albert Dock)
Fri 10.00am Paul and George Sat 10.00am John and Ringo Sun 9.30am Magical Mystery Tour Monday 10.00am Fifth Beatle Tues 10.00am ‘Real Love’ ‘Free as a Bird’
LIPA: Tours of LIPA are oniy available on the Sunday. Tours must be booked at the CCT desk from Friday onwards. Priced £5.
Sunday Tours of LIPA are available at the following times 10.30, 12.00, 13.30, 15.00, 16.30, 18.00. Tickets for these events are strictly limited and are available on a first come, first served basis.
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