May 2019 – In May 1970, two gifted young songwriters from Livingston, New Jersey named Jimmer Glynn and Alan Rackin came to England in order to audition for Apple – following an invitation by Derek Taylor six weeks earlier. On 1 April 1970, they duly arrived in London and were welcomed by Derek, who encouraged them to make some demos. A few days later, on 11 April, they returned to 3 Savile Rowe to present an album’s worth of recordings. By then The Beatles had broken up and so did Jimmer and Alan’s dream to be signed. Until now, no one outside a small circle has heard those recordings. By kind permission of Jimmer Glynn, Apcor proudly presents the LP Far Away Country Day – The Complete Apple Demos, an excellent batch of catchy folky tunes not unlike the sort of music made by bands like Mortimer and Splinter, that also caught Apple’s attention. 14 never before released songs, 44 and a half minutes of playing time. Pressed on silver coloured vinyl in a strictly limited edition of 100 numbered copies, all hand signed by Jimmer Glynn on the front cover.
March 2019 – In 1974, a young artist by the name of Robin Millar entered The Beatles’ Apple Studios to record his first solo album. The LP was to be produced by Rolling Stone Mick Taylor, who also happened to be Robin’s brother-in-law at that time. Both men worked hard on the album with the aid of Gordon Raitt on bass and Jamie Lane on drums and with the help of legendary session musicians (and Beatles session men!) Billy Preston, Nicky Hopkins and Bobby Keys they made a splendid album which would undoubtedly have achieved great success, had it been released at the time. However, when Mick Taylor announced his departure from The Rolling Stones, the record company withdrew their support for this album and it was shelved. (Only one single made it out, Catch As Catch Can c/w For My Life, the B-side of which was an edit of the originally 7.15 minute track). Unreleased, that is, until now, more than almost half a decade later, when Robin granted APCOR the rights to the much belated release of this masterpiece. Cat’s Eyes is a truly undiscovered gem which, hopefully, finally gets the attention it should have received almost half a century ago. The songs are well-crafted, the singing is beautiful and the playing is immaculate. Ten strong songs make up all of the 53 minutes and 32 seconds of the album, which was sourced from the original 2-track Apple master mix-down tapes. The Cat’s Eyes LP comes on blue/black splattered vinyl in a limited edition of 300 numbered copies, in a beautiful gatefold sleeve, and includes a voucher for a digital download. (Apcor LP03). Also available on CD (See CD/DVD section).
April 2017 – The winter of 1969 for the Beatles and Apple was, as George Harrison put it so aptly, a Winter of Discontent. The long sessions at Twickenham and later at Apple took their toll on the Beatles who were already slightly burned out from the White Album sessions the previous year. While Paul was the one to try and get something, anything together for the Beatles, the other three were not so gung ho anymore to go along with the Paul-instigated Beatles projects. George had just spent nearly a month in the USA, jamming with various musicians and having a great time, John was immersed in Yoko and a dependence on stuff somewhat stronger than a reefer while Ringo seemed to be more interested in his upcoming role in The Magic Christian movie. While the sessions lasted merely a month (Sgt. Pepper took nearly four months to make), so much happened that it would take a book to describe all what was going on. And that book is here. A Is For Apple Volume 2. But of course not only the so-called Get Back sessions ‘happened’ in January, or the following months. There was Mary Hopkin’s Post Card album, as well as Jackie Lomax’ Is This What You Want LP. Doris Troy and Billy Preston entered the scene at Apple. The Beatles’ Yellow Submarine album hit the streets.
Volume 2 of A Is For Apple covers the Get Back sessions and Mary and Jackie’s albums in great detail. The complete Yellow Submarine album takes up more than 60 pages by itself. Volume 2 covers the period of January to March 1969. And while everyone will know about these releases, maybe not in such great detail, Volume 2 also offers information on lesser known Apple acts from this timespan, such as John Surman, Mike Westbrook, Mike Cooper, the Misunderstood, Flamma Sherman, Stefan Grossman, Peter Cooper, Slow Dog and John Fitch.
Volume 2 has a chapter on Timothy Travel, a puppet series produced by Apple, which didn’t get beyond a pilot episode and is more or less totally forgotten. Allan Klein’s reign is just around the corner and John and Yoko are busy making their Rape movie. (White) Trash issue their superb Road To Nowhere single and Brute Force’s King of Fuh is being picked up by George Harrison. Two Virgins gets its USA release and a four album pack of Beatles hits gets nixed before release. Bubble Puppy, Mary Jane Bann’d and Stone Down are all nearly signed by Apple while The Iveys go on national TV. John and Yoko stage their first Bed-In in Amsterdam and Paul records with The Fourmost. The amount of day-to-day activities related to Apple in these three months is astounding. All this is covered in great detail in Volume 2 of A Is For Apple.
Slow Dog were a band that won a talent contest organized by Apple in Cambridge and were destined to be signed by Apple. Why this didn’t work out in the end is all revealed in A Is For Apple Volume 2. Four of the band’s recordings made around the time of the contest have been included on an EP exclusive to this book, kindly donated to us by Dave Kelly from Slow Dog and it marks the first time these recordings have ever seen an official release! Like A Is For Apple Volume 1, which clocked in at 692 pages, Volume 2 is of a similar size with over 600 pages full of rare photos, documents and record labels and sleeves. You will find discographies on Billy Preston, Jackie Lomax and Doris Troy before they joined Apple. You will find images of every original disc the Beatles covered during the Get Back sessions. You will find detailed information and images of every Apple published and Apple related disc released during the first quarter of 1969. You will find a complete overview of every recording, be it audio or video, made during the Beatles’ sessions at Twickenham and Apple.
A Is For Apple Volume 2 (ISBN 9 783000 556951) was issued in a limited edition of 800 copies. All copies come with a free EP with four Slow Dog recordings (Little Girl – Take Off c/w I Have No Answers – She’s Got Love, Apcor 3). The first 500 copies of the book (now sold out) originally came with an extra 7″ vinyl single, containing recordings taken from Apple acetates (Jackie Lomax – The Millionaire c/w Grenville & Weston – Aeroplane, Apcor 4), but this has also been made available separately (see 7″ singles section).
February 2020 – Release of book A Is For Apple Volume 3 (ISBN 9 789082 843422) in a limited edition of 500 copies. Like Volumes 1 and 2, Volume 3 is another beast of a book, clocking in at nearly 660 pages in full colour, weighing 3.2 kilograms, individually numbered and with a hard cover featuring a superb design by our very own artist Ronnie Dannelley. Volume 3 covers the period April to August 1969, the period where Apple’s ‘De-Klein’ set in. It contains hundreds of rare photos and documents, biographies and extensive discographies of Apple-related record releases, as well as contributions by Paul Wane (of Tracks, Chorley, Lancashire, UK), Sara Schmidt (of the www.meetthebeatlesforreal.com blog) and Joachim Noske (writer of The Beatles Covered) and literate by the one and only, nearly famous left-handed bassist Mike Carpenter.
All copies come with a free 7″ single housed in a picture sleeve (Bad Weather (White Trash) c/w Bad Weather (The Poets), Apcor 6) as well as a DVD (July August 1969 London Esher Liverpool,Apcor DVD01) featuring the last recorded and previously unseen fan footage of the Beatles operating as a group, coming into the EMI Studios at Abbey Road, including a meeting with George at his Kinfauns home, housed in a digipack with a 42-page full colour booklet with an essay by Pat Simmons who filmed it all (and also was the President of The Write Thing fan club). All footage taken from the original reels. Also included is a numbered and autographed post card, signed by Pat. (The DVD and the single are also available separately, see DVD/CD and 7″ singles sections respectively).
May 2018 – Release date of book Porky’s Prime Cuts (ISBN 9 789082 843408), Apple Records cutter George Peckham’s autobiography in a limited run of 300 hand-signed numbered copies worldwide. Led Zeppelin I, Imagine (John Lennon), All Things Must Pass (George Harrison), Last Exit (Traffic), Look At Yourself (Uriah Heep), The Concert for Bangla Desh, Made In Japan (Deep Purple), Volume 4 (Black Sabbath), Living In The Past (Jethro Tull), Selling England By The Pound (Genesis), Armed Forces (Elvis Costello), Fear Of Music (The Talking Heads), Powerage (AC/DC). All classic albums of the 1970s and all have one thing in common: The masters for these records were all cut by one man. His name is George Peckham, also known by his two nicknames Pecko and Porky. Many, many records in the 1970s until his retirement in the 1990s were cut by him, for such diverse artists as Elvis Costello, Joy Division, Public Image Limited, Madness, Motörhead, Scritti Politti – too many to mention. Mastering a record means the engineer transfers the master tape of the recording onto an acetate disc as loud as possible and to make it sound as good as possible, with the help of some equalization. George Peckham is considered the top in his field along with Robert Ludwig, Greg Calbi and Bernie Grundman. Records which carry the stamp of these cutters are regarded by vinyl collectors as the best ever. George Peckham’s cuts literally carried his stamp, his productions were always inscribed in the dead wax (i.e. run-out groove) of every disc he was involved in – his trade mark of quality. This is the autobiography of George Peckham, born in Liverpool in 1942. George, like so many English kids in the early 1960s, was inspired by the skiffle craze and early beat movement to pick up a guitar to form a group, as they were then called. George formed a group called The Renegades in the early 1960s in Liverpool. When that band broke up, George joined The Pawns who were quite successful with tours in Germany and in and around their hometown. After a short stint with Lee Curtis and his All Stars, George was asked to join The Fourmost with which he recorded two singles and performed all over Europe. Around this time George got more and more interested in the technical side of the record business (recording and engineering techniques) and when The Beatles formed their Apple company George was hired as a trainee cutting engineer to Malcolm Davies in November 1968. In 1970 George joined George Harrison to New York to help him with the mastering of George’s legendary All Things Must Pass album. In 1971 George and a couple of Apple employees formed a band called Matchbox with which he recorded a few songs and performed on British TV. This project, however, was short-lived and George was promoted to balancing engineer for Apple Records in January 1972. He remained with Apple until April 1973, when he decided to start up his own mastering company called The Master Room, which operated until the late 1990’s, when he decided to retire. This, then, is his life story and it is hilariously funny, sad at times, revealing, uplifting, shocking, fascinating and never boring. A life full of sex (a lot), drugs (a little) and rock & roll (more than enough) is described in an entertaining style in a book you just can’t lay down. Spiced up with photos and documents from George’s own collection, this is the only true story of a man who became a legend in his own lifetime as the man who mastered so many classic records we still enjoy today. All copies hand-signed by George Peckham.
October 2020 – VINYLOLOGY THE BEATLES SOLO: The Ultimate Guide to U.K. LP pressing variations 1968-2000.
The Beatles’ U.K. album discography basically covers just seven sweet years (1963-1970, not counting the numerous compilations and archive editions released since), and has been analyzed in many publications. A lot of people tend to forget that since the split, the four members have kept making music and releasing records, which are being collected all over the world. Strangely enough, the U.K. album output by John, George, Paul and Ringo has never been documented properly in book form. Denis Shabes has compiled the ultimate guide to the solo Beatles U.K. LP pressing variations released since 1968. From John and Yoko’s experimental Two Virgins to George’s excellent Wonderwall Music and from Paul’s The Family Way film soundtrack to Ringo’s Sentimental Journey, each and every LP is discussed in great detail, & spiced up with hundreds of colour photographs. Every insert, inner sleeve and even hype sticker is included, as is information on matrix numbers, how to date the original inner sleeves, minor (and major!) label and sleeve variations: It’s all in here! Every LP by John Lennon, Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr and George Harrison ever released in the U.K. on vinyl is included, including Paul’s more or less experimental outings such as Thrillington and/or The Fireman and his orchestral works, plus the reissues on MFP and assorted labels. Not just the EMI/Apple years, but also their releases on labels such as Polydor, Dark Horse etc.
Apcor is proud to announce the release of this hardcover book which measures 21.5 x 30 cms, 332 glossy pages with more than 1,360 photos (!) and is stacked with detailed info on how to date a first pressing and recognize a reissue. Never before has the solo album discography been discussed in so much detail – the final word on JPGR’s U.K. solo albums.
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