The Beatles first visit to Scotland

On January 8th, 1963 after short tour in the north of Scotland, the Beatles lip-synced their soon-to-be-released single, Please Please Me, for the children’s television program Roundup at STV studios in Glasgow.

On January 8th, 1963 after short tour in the north of Scotland, the Beatles lip-synced their soon-to-be-released single, Please Please Me, for the children’s television program Roundup at STV studios in Glasgow.

George Harrison: “Scotland had been our first glimpse of show business, a faint hope.” John Lennon: pinned “In My Life” in Scotland: https://scotbeat.wordpress.com/2015/04/25/john-lennon-returns-to-scotland-1969/

The Beatles were meant to start a five day tour in Keith where they had played as a back-up band before reforming the group with Ringo Starr under Brian Epstein’s guidance. Because of snow conditions, their New Year’s show was canceled and they played their first performance at Elgin’s Two Red Shoes on the 3rd of January, 1963. A original band member from Alex Sutherland’s group, told me that they were impressed with their take on popular covers of the time. Though it was the dead of winter, their thursday night performance attracted 200 according to one of the ticket takers. Promoter Albert Bonici dubbed them, “Love Me Do boys” as Love Me Do was their first song which entered the charts, though Please, Please, Me soon took the number one stop on Luxembourg radio.

Fit Like, New York?: An Irreverent History of Rock Music in Aberdeen and North East Scotland [written by Peter Innes/published by Aberdeen Journals, 1997] is an interesting read and includes this bit about Aberdeen promoter Gordon Hardie and The Beatles first tour that finished with a performance at Aberdeen’s Beach Ballroom. Ten years after the book was written, Gordon told me that he worked for Albert Bonici on several occasion and that it was Albert who brought the Beatles to Scotland besides many other musicians.  Gordon Hardie https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mfEVUzUBiZU&feature=youtu.be Contract for Beatles in Scotland 1962 [between Epstein/Bonici] https://scotbeat.wordpress.com/2014/05/21/beatles-tour-contract-nov63/

 

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My research began in 2007 as a visitor to the north of Scotland. In the early 1950s, Albert Bonici began promoting dances though it had been an ambition since his teenage years. When he and Henry Robertson co-organized a string of jazz dances in the north Scotland, they could not have predicted the enormous success of the venture. Albert Bonici became one of the most respected promoters in the UK having arranged a high volumn of music venues throughout the north of Scotland which delighted music lovers during the height of the jazz and beat music era. Whilst known for booking the Beatles at the beginning of their 1963 tours, Albert Bonici brought most of the top British acts to north-east Scotland besides working with Scottish musicians to boost their careers. SCOTBEAT was created to share a bit of history about the BEAT years in Scotland and also a tribute to a man with a vision who, with the help of his family and staff, created a happening that is still fondly remembered by those who attended dances and concerts. Albert A Bonici hosted many up and coming bands who went on to gain international acclaim for their contributions. Besides other local resources and interviews, SCOTBEAT presents exclusive photos, adverts, and documents from the A Bonici Archives [circa 1960s]. Unless otherwise agreed, materials are not to be used for financial gain and ask that you respect the terms below. Materials presented are not to be used for financial gain without consent. © 2014-2019 SCOTBEAT.wordpress.com. All rights reserved. No part of this web site may be copied, redistributed, broadcast or published in any form without crediting this blog and/or copyright websites mentioned. All correspondence, flyers, programs, and photos from the Bonici Archives are not to appear in print other than through the propietor of SCOTBEAT. Use of the site signifies your agreement to all of these terms without condition. Please reference https://scotbeat.wordpress.com when sharing materials found here as the site is continuously updated to present the subject matter accurately and as a historical resource. Thank you.

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Posted in 1960's pop music
4 comments on “The Beatles first visit to Scotland
  1. scotbeat says:

    Gordon Hardie, who worked for Albert Bonici at the time, told me that John wrote the lyrics to In My Life [recorded 1965] whilst visiting Scotland as he had fond memories of visiting family in Durness, Scotland

    http://www.durness.org/Lennon%20Connection.htm

  2. Dennis Paterson says:

    Hi, I come from Cullen, where Johnny and the Copycats played a lot, and am a pal of Johnny Stewart the lead singer. Have you any photos or recordings of the group.
    Dennis Paterson

    • scotbeat says:

      Hi Dennis,
      There are photos and posts regarding Johnny and The Copycats. Type in “copycats” in search box [top right] and check it out. If you’ve anything to share, please do. cheers, David

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