Category Archives: Other products



Apple Corps and EMI have released all of the core Beatles albums in stereo. The albums were derived from the remasters previously released in 2009 on CD and in 2010 for digital download on iTunes. The LPs are available individually and in a special limited edition box set.

The albums are pressed on 180-gram audiophile quality vinyl and are packaged in replicated artwork. Sgt. Pepper, Magical Mystery Tour and The White Album come with all of the extras from the original releases; however, the Let It Be LP does not come with the lavish book that accompanied the initial copies of the album in most markets other than the U.S. The labels to the discs effectively mimic the original labels from the sixties.

The remastered albums sound terrific. They have that special warm sound of vinyl that audiophiles claim is missing from CDs. As was the case with the CDs, the bass sound is more prominent than on the records from the sixties. The remastered vinyl is, to my ears, superior to both the original vinyl releases from the sixties and the Mobile Fidelity discs from the seventies. If you want the excitement of removing thick vinyl from an attractive 12-inch sleeve and placing the platter on the turntable, this is the way to go!

The hardcover book exclusive to the box set is both visually stunning and informative. Kevin Howlett’s notes provide a balanced mixture of pop culture and facts about the recordings. If this set is within your budget, I highly recommend its purchase. You won’t be disappointed.

















50 years ago: The Beatles and James Bond

The Beatles were in Hamburg and James Bond was in the clutches of Dr. No on Crab Tree Island

As detailed in last week’s edition, the Beatles were playing nightly at the Star-Club in Hamburg from November 1 – 14, 1962. During this time, people back in Merry Old England were enjoying the first James Bond film, “Dr. No.” In fact, the first James Bond film made its world-wide premier in London on October 5, 1962, the same day that the first Beatles single, “Love Me Do,” was released!

This week’s trivia questions pertain to other connections between the Beatles and James Bond.

1. Which Beatles movie contains gimmicks and music mimicking the James Bond craze?

2. Name the three James Bond theme songs produced by Beatles producer George Martin, along with the artist who sang each song.

3. In the film “Goldfinger,” what remark does James Bond make about the Beatles when discussing the proper temperature for drinking Dom Perignon champagne?

4. The James Bond film “The Spy Who Loved Me” has two connections to Ringo and one connection to Paul. Can you describe them? Hint: Two of the connections are linked to the theme song for the film, “Nobody Does It Better.”

5. Actor Richard Vernon appears in both a James Bond movie and a Beatles film. Name the two movies and the roles he played.


1. The Beatles second film, “Help!,” was influenced by the James Bond craze. After confronting the Beatles as they leave their apartment, Klang and Bhuta prepare to follow the Fab Four’s car in a Harrods truck that drops tacks into the street. This “chase scene” parodies the classic scene in “Goldfinger” when the back of James Bond’s Aston Martin car releases smoke and oil slicks in front of the cars in pursuit. The music for this scene in “Help!” is a variation of the “James Bond Theme.” A portion of this music was used to open the Capitol Records soundtrack album for “Help!”

2. George Martin produced the following James Bond theme songs: “From Russia With Love” by Matt Monro, “Goldfinger” by Shirley Bassey and “Live And Let Die” by Wings. Martin also produced the score for the film soundtrack for “Live And let Die.” The book “The Beatles Solo on Apple Records” tells the fascinating and humorous story about how Paul was asked to write the theme song for “Live And Let Die” and the meeting between George Martin and film producer Harry Saltzman during which Saltzman asked Martin who they should get to sing the title song! Saltzman, who had used singers such as Matt Monro, Shirley Bassey, Tom Jones and Nancy Sinatra for prior Bond films, had female vocalists like Thelma Houston and Aretha Franklin in mind. When Martin explained that they would not get the song unless they used Paul’s recording, Saltzman consented after realizing that having an ex-Beatle sing the theme song could be a plus.

3. After noticing that a bottle of Dom Perignon champagne had lost its chill, James Bond climbs out of bed to get a fresh bottle from the hotel suite refrigerator. He explains to his beautiful female companion, Jill Masterson, “My dear girl, there are some things that just aren’t done, such as drinking Dom Perignon ’53 above the temperature of 38 degrees Fahrenheit. That’s just as bad as listening to the Beatles without earmuffs!” Shortly after insulting the Beatles, Bond was knocked unconscious by Goldfinger’s Korean henchman, Odd-Job. Although he recovered, the girl was painted gold from head to toe, causing her to suffocate from lack of oxygen passing through her skin.

4. The lead Bond Girl in “The Spy Who Loved Me” was Barbara Bach, who later married Ringo. The theme song for the film, “Nobody Does It Better” (performed by Carly Simon), was produced by Richard Perry, who produced the albums “Ringo” and “Goodnight Vienna” for Ringo. Finally, the guitar solo in the song was played by Laurence Juber, who later was a member of Wings with Paul McCartney.

5. Actor Richard Vernon appears in the James Bond film “Goldfinger” as Colonel Smithers and as the Man on the Train in “A Hard Day’s Night.” He is the stuffy businessman who is annoyed by the Beatles playing the radio and opening the train compartment window for fresh air. He’s the one who says “I fought the war for your sort.”

Thanks to Beatle Tom Frangione for Help! with this week’s trivia

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Paul McCartney – Ram

Paul McCartney just released the much anticipated remastered and deluxe editions of “Ram,” his second album after leaving the Beatles. Unlike his home-spun simple predecessor “McCartney,” the new album was recorded in New York with top-flight session musicians and featured elaborate instrumentation and arrangements. Although the album was vilified by some overly hip critics, “Ram” is a remarkably fresh-sounding collection of well-recorded and superbly-performed songs.

The deluxe edition of “Ram” is well worth the money if you are into tons of extra photos, information about the recording of the album and bonus tracks.


In addition to the remastered stereo album, the package includes a bonus CD containing both sides of the single pulled from the “Ram” sessions and six songs from the sessions that remained unreleased for years, a CD containing the rare mono mix of “Ram” made for AM radio, a CD of the “Thrillington” instrumental version of the album and a DVD. My only complaint is the packaging is too big!

For those less obsessed and/or with less disposable income, there are more reasonably priced editions available.





MP3 Download version:



Bruce is featured on a Grammy nominated album

FAB FAN MEMORIES – THE BEATLES BOND has been nominated for a 2012 Grammy Award in the spoken word category. The CD is hosted by Louise Harrison (sister of Beatle George Harrison) and features interviews with fans telling about their personal Beatles experiences. You’ll hear captivating stories by Rod Davis, Janis Ian, Phil Keaggy, Melissa Manchester, Ken Mansfield, Alan Menken, Bruce Spizer and Billy Swan as well as everyday fans.

The CD includes original songs and underscoring written and produced by myself and fellow band members of The WannaBeatles. Also featured are The Liverpool Legends performing Beatles favorites.

You can hear an audio sample at:

The Grammy Awards show will be broadcast live on Sunday, February 12, 2012.

capitol albums longbox v 2

The Beatles Capitol Albums Volume 2


The box set’s packaging is similar to that of The Capitol Albums, Vol. 1. Each of the four CDs is housed in a cardboard sleeve featuring the album’s original cover artwork. The labels to the CDs mimic each album’s original Capitol rainbow label. The box set contains a colorful 56-page booklet full of rare photographs and quotes from the Beatles.

Bruce wrote the essay contained in the set’s booklet, and also served as a consultant on the project.

The CD box set contains stereo and mono versions of the four Beatles albums released by Capitol in 1965, namely The Early Beatles, Beatles VI, the Help! soundtrack and the American version of Rubber Soul. These albums were mastered from the original Capitol tapes by Ted Jensen at Sterling Sound using 24-bit digital technology. As was the case with The Capitol Albums, Vol. 1, the discs sound superb and capture the magic of the original Capitol albums.

The Early Beatles marks the stereo debut on CD of nine early Beatles classics, including Please Please Me and Twist And Shout. It also contains the first CD release of the fake stereo mixes of Love Me Do and P.S. I Love You prepared by George Martin for the stereo version of the group’s first Parlophone LP. Nine of the eleven mono tracks are unique Capitol stereo-to-mono mixdowns appearing for the first time on CD.

Beatles VI marks the stereo debut on CD of five Beatles recordings, including cover versions of Kansas City and Words Of Love, as well as Lennon and McCartney’s What You’re Doing, Every Little Thing and I Don’t Want To Spoil The Party. The stereo album also contains the CD debut of Capitol’s unique duophonic mix of Yes It Is. The mono album also includes many CD firsts: the appearance of four songs in their original 1965 George Martin mono mixes (You Like Me Too Much, Bad Boy, Dizzy Miss Lizzie and Tell Me What You See) and five songs in their unique Capitol remixes with added echo and reverb (Kansas City, I Don’t Want To Spoil The Party, Words Of Love, What You’re Doing and Every Little Thing).

The Capitol Albums, Vol. 2 marks the first appearance on CD of the Help! soundtrack album. Six of its tracks have never been issued on CD in mono or stereo, namely the edit of Help! with its James Bond-derived introduction and five instrumental tracks from the film, including From Me To You Fantasy and Another Hard Day’s Night. When the British Help! LP was issued on CD in 1987, it contained George Martin stereo remixes of the songs, which have been used on subsequent CD compilations. The Capitol soundtrack album marks the CD debut of five songs in their original 1965 George Martin stereo mixes (The Night Before, You’ve Got To Hide Your Love Away, I Need You, Another Girl and You’re Gonna Lose That Girl). The stereo album also contains the CD debut of Capitol’s unique duophonic mix of Ticket To Ride. The mono album marks the mono debut on CD of five songs (The Night Before, You’ve Got To Hide Your Love Away, I Need You, Another Girl and You’re Gonna Lose That Girl), which appear in unique Capitol stereo-to-mono mixdowns.

The Capitol version of Rubber Soul contains the CD debut of twelve songs in their original 1965 George Martin stereo mixes. When these songs first appeared on CD in 1987, they were stereo remixes of the songs prepared by George Martin. The album’s twelve songs are also making their mono debut on CD, this time with George Martin’s original mono mixes from 1965.

Because the 46 songs on The Capitol Albums, Vol. 2 appear in both stereo and mono mixes, the box set contains 92 total tracks. Out of this number, 82 are versions not previously available on CD.

Track listings and release details:


Love Me Do [2]
Twist And Shout [1][3]
Anna [1][3]
Chains [1][3]
Boys [1][3]
Ask Me Why [1][3]
Please Please Me [1][3]
P.S. I Love You [2]
Baby It’s You [1][3]
A Taste Of Honey [1][3]
Do You Want To Know A Secret [1][3]

[1] Stereo debut on CD (9 tracks)
[2] First CD appearance of 1963 simulated stereo mix from first U.K. LP (2 tracks)
[3] First CD appearance of unique Capitol stereo-to-mono mixdown (9 tracks)


Kansas City [1][5]
Eight Days A Week
You Like Me Too Much [4] *
Bad Boy [4]
I Don’t Want To Spoil The Party [1][5]
Words Of Love [1][5]
What You’re Doing [1][5]
Yes It Is [6]
Dizzy Miss Lizzie [4]
Tell Me What You See [4]
Every Little Thing [1][5]

[1] Stereo debut on CD (5 tracks)
[4] Mono debut on CD (4 tracks)
[5] First CD appearance of unique Capitol remixes with echo and reverb (5 tracks)
[6] First CD appearance of unique Capitol duophonic mix (1 track)


Help! (with James Bond intro) [3][7]
The Night Before [3][4][8]
From Me To You Fantasy (Instrumental) [3][7]
You’ve Got To Hide Your Love Away [3][4][8]
I Need You [3][4][8]
In The Tyrol (Instrumental) [3][7]
Another Girl [3][4][8]
Another Hard Day’s Night (Instrumental) [3][7]
Ticket To Ride [6]
The Bitter End/You Can’t Do That (Instrumental) [3][7]
You’re Gonna Lose That Girl [3][4][8]
The Chase (Instrumental) [3][7]

[3] First CD appearance of unique Capitol stereo-to-mono mixdown (11 tracks)
[4] Mono debut on CD (5 tracks)
[6] First CD appearance of unique Capitol duophonic mix (1 track)
[7] First CD appearance in any version (6 tracks)
[8] First CD appearance of original 1965 George Martin stereo mix (5 tracks)


I’ve Just Seen A Face [4][8]
Norwegian Wood (This Bird Has Flown) [4][8]
You Won’t See Me [4][8] *
Think For Yourself [4][8]
The Word [4][8]
Michelle [4][8] *
It’s Only Love [4][8] *
Girl [4][8]
I’m Looking Through You [4][8]
In My Life [4][8]
Wait [4][8]
Run For Your Life [4][8]

[4] Mono debut on CD (12 tracks)
[8] First CD appearance of original 1965 George Martin stereo mix (12 tracks)

* These four tracks appeared in mono on the limited edition British EP Collection set, but for most fans this will be first time these tracks are heard in mono on a commercially released mainstream Beatles CD.



trivial pursuit 2

Trivial Pursuit – Beatles Edition

With 2,592 questions written by Bruce Spizer.


HOW TO ACE The Beatles Trivial Pursuit game

Improve your performance by reading his books! Nearly all of the answers in the “On Their Own” category come from “The Beatles Solo on Apple Records.” Many of the answers for “The Beatles in America” category can be found in his “The Beatles Are Coming!” book. His other books are the source for the “Albums & Singles” and “Songs” categories.

Capitol Albums V1 CD booklet

Capitol Albums V. 1 CD Booklet

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Capitol Albums V1 CD booklet

This 12-page CD booklet serves as a companion piece to the official booklet contained in “The Capitol Albums Volume 1.”

It tells the fascinating story of how Americans were exposed to the Beatles through four incredible albums issued by Capitol Records in 1964, complete with rare photos and mastering, sales and chart information.


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(free shipping – domestic orders only. $5.00 shipping international)

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