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Shout! The Beatles in Their Generation (Englisch) Gebundene Ausgabe

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Von Ein Kunde am 25. Juni 2004
Format: Taschenbuch
Norman, a journalist, wrote the first "realistic" (ie down-
and-dirty) biography, daring to suggest that The Beatles
were not the sweet young men the media promoted, but were
ordinary fellas of extraordinary talent caught up in the
miracle and morass of Beatlemania. Norman, for all his
careful research, relied more than necessary on unsubstan-
tiated, opinions, and many inaccuracies remain in this book.
Read, as with Hunter Davis, with this in mind.
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Philip Norman hat sich vor 1991 richtig Mühe gegeben, alle Details über The Beatles zusammen zu tragen. Seither bringt er regelmäßig überarbeitete Ausgaben von Shout! heraus, und obwohl eigentlich alles bekannt ist, macht es doch Spaß, noch einmal die Details der Karriere der Fab Four zu lesen. Manchmal ist Norman zu verliebt in kleine Details, wenn interessiert schon der Name eines Lehrers, den John in seiner Schulzeit hatte. Aber es sei ihm verziehen. Wer gut in englischer Sprache lesen kann, dem empfehle ich diese doch sehr dicke Buch.
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Ein Buch (Kindle Version) über die Fab 4 in englischer Sprache. Wer sich mit dem Genre einigermaßen auskennt, versteht den Inhalt auch ohne dass er jedes zweite Wort nachschlagen muss. Dank der Kindle Übersetzungshilfe auf Fingerdruck bekommt man die Worte, die man nicht versteht, sofort übersetzt, ohne dass der Lesefluss unterbrochen wird.
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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf (beta) HASH(0x94cb0cb4) von 5 Sternen 7 Rezensionen
4 von 4 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
HASH(0x94ae90cc) von 5 Sternen Not about the music... 12. Juli 2010
Von Matt Blick - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Taschenbuch
This is a fairly interesting and comprehensive book on the Beatles. Other than a single chapter on childhood and a chapter on each `ex-Beatles' the focus is firmly on the rise and fall of the fab four. It's a passable overview for the general fan, but as someone looking for insights into the music for my Beatles Songwriting blog I was disappointed.

Norman rarely touches on the music, and when he does he often gets it wrong. In fact he not only reveals little insight into the Beatles songs, but little grasp of music generally.

So we have Stu Sutcliffe struggling to play chords shapes on his bass (57) and a Les Paul guitar is apparently a "state of the art" guitar (458).

Mistakes about the Beatles songs are even worse, leaving you wondering how closely he's listened to the songs. The 8 second guitar coda on A Hard Day's Night is described as being "gloriously long and irrelevant" (239) (it was there to act as a cross fade to the action in the film). The lyrics to Polythene Pam are wrong (397). And this is in a `Completely revised and updated edition'.

Musical history doesn't fare much better. Norman claims Only a Northern Song was written for Yellow Submarine (334) - it was a Sgt Pepper outtake, and that the Ballad of John & Yoko was recorded single-handedly by John with later drum overdubs by Paul (389) - they recorded it together, famously calling each other `Ringo and George' on the master tape.

As other reviewers have mentioned, Paul comes in for a good kicking whenever the chance arises - for secretly coveting the position of bass player in Hamburg days! for having a ghosted autobiography (even though this `autobiography' was written solely by Barry Miles) or merely for being `desperately anxious to be liked".

The book has some good insights into how the publishing deals were struck and how the Beatles finally broke though in the states. But in a world swamped with books on the Beatles I can't help feeling that there are better ones out there.

I'd suggest the The Rough Guide to the Beatles (Rough Guide Music Reference) as one possible (and more accurate) alternative.
3 von 3 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
HASH(0x94ae94d4) von 5 Sternen a good work, likely the definitive biography of the Beatles 23. Juli 2013
Von Brian Frost - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
However, recognize that it focuses far less on their music than on their impact "in their generation". It covers their actions and activities, and the headlines they made, almost from a detached perspective. I would have preferred a more personal approach - perhaps The Beatles chose to not make themselves available, but a greater reliance on the personal and intimate perspectives of Pete Best, Astrid, Neil and Mal, George Martin, Peter Brown, Derek Taylor, etc would have been welcome
2 von 2 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
HASH(0x94ae92dc) von 5 Sternen Of all the Beatles biographies, this is a must-read, with its strongest parts the Beatles' early days in Liverpool and Hamburg 21. November 2012
Von Craig Rowland - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
During the period from 1980 to 1985 I was a die-hard Beatlemaniac. My high school years were spent discovering the music of a band that had broken up a decade ago. Not only did I buy a new album every two weeks after I got paid from my paper route, but I could also afford to buy Beatle books. I had lots of time while in high school to read these books, yet oddly I never read Shout! The True Story of the Beatles by Philip Norman until now--thirty years after I bought it. I do not know why I never read Shout! when I first got it; I'm glancing at all the other books I bought thirty years ago and I remember reading them. It must have slipped through the hole I was fixing. To make the situation sound even worse, I acquired two other editions of the same book. This was during a time when I would buy a reprint or an American or British edition merely if it had a different cover. You'd think that having three copies of the same book sitting on my shelf would have given me some inducement to read it.

My Corgi edition is a British printing. What is it about British paperbacks: they all seem to be printed in the most minuscule font. At 426 pages, this was a solid work which had pages with a hair's width between lines and very narrow margins. It took me two and a half weeks to read Shout! That length of time is not a reflection on the quality of writing, however. Norman spent the first half of the book writing about the Beatles just prior to their American invasion in 1964. Within those first two hundred pages, he talked about the early lives of John Lennon and Paul McCartney from the times of their birth. George Harrison is introduced when he joins John and Paul in the Quarrymen. We meet Ringo Starr as a twenty-year-old, just before he joins the group by then known as the Beatles.

Once I got into Shout!, I had a sense of déjà vu because I was certain I had come across these same passages somewhere else. I had: in other authors' citations. It seems that many an author used this 1982 work as source material for their own projects. Shout! has been called one of the best Beatle biographies and it deserves this reputation: Norman interviewed the Beatles several times from 1965 on, but admits at the end of Shout! that he was not able to interview any of the Beatles in the two years he spent researching the book starting in 1978. Thus his quotes from the Beatles themselves are from the times of Beatlemania and not from the perspective of a man in his late thirties looking back.

I enjoyed the stories about the Beatles' times in Hamburg and the interviews Norman conducted with their club managers and close friends. Norman spent as much time writing about the Beatles' manager Brian Epstein as he did with each individual Beatle. It was a fascinating story how Epstein learned about this Liverpool group apparently causing a commotion right under his nose, then finally how he won them over in spite of their doubts about all his promises of worldwide success.

Norman writes that Epstein was hopelessly in love with John [1] and was attracted to him at first because of his rough, leather-clad appearance, mouthing off to the audience. Epstein was a refined, stereotypically gentle and dainty gay man who was attracted to rough sorts who would take great pleasure in bashing him around (as what happened a few times in his nocturnal sojourns around gay Liverpool). John knew of Epstein's infatuation yet was not bothered by it. He even agreed to go on holiday with him to Spain. The only time I was annoyed while reading this book was that Norman did not follow up on this trip. He wrote about Epstein's unrequited love for John over and over, and built it up to the point where the two go off on holiday together where Epstein would finally tell John his true feelings for him, yet Norman never referred to this holiday, or Epstein's one-sided love affair with John Lennon ever again.

Misspellings were an embarrassment in Shout! Aside from some words, proper names were misspelled: Adelai Stevenson, Roman Polansky (more than once) and, unbelievably, Linda MaCartney. This book may have been written before spell-checking programs but surely an editor would have caught a misspelling of McCartney.

The second two hundred pages were devoted to the Beatles' invasion of the United States, the unbearable international tours they all dreaded, the Summer of Love and Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, the death of their manager Brian Epstein, the formation of Apple Records and the breakup of the band. A chapter for each but since Norman had access to the Beatles and their inner circle, the content was rich and can't-put-down. When I first heard Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band in its entirety I was fourteen years old and could not believe what I had just heard. This is no 20/20 hindsight reinterpretation; I fell in love with the Beatles at that moment. On that day, 16 May 1980, I wrote about it in my diary and that entry was reproduced in my LiveJournal for 16 May 2011. Norman had me nodding with approval as I read the following paragraph:

"Each decade brings but one or two authentically memorable moments. As a rule, only war, or some fearful tragedy, can penetrate the preoccupations of millions in the same moment to produce a single, concerted emotion. And yet, in June 1967, such an emotion arose, not from death or trepidation but from the playing of a gramophone record. There are, to this day, thousands of Britons and Americans who can describe exactly where they were and what they were doing at the moment they first listened to Sergeant Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. That music, as powerfully as Kennedy's assassination or the first moon landing, summons up an exact time and place, an emotion undimmed by time or ageing. The memory is the same to all--how they first drew the shining disc from its gaudy sleeve; how they could not believe it at first and had to play it all through again, over and over."

How true that first listen to Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band was to me. Norman wrote the Beatles' song and album titles without quotation marks and not in italics, so it was hard to read them at times, not separated from the other text. Titles blended in with the other words. It was just plain annoying to see the Beatles' album title written as Sergeant Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, always with "Sergeant" spelled out in full. It is only used in abbreviated form on the actual sleeve and label.

Of the hundreds of Beatles biographies out there, only a handful deserve to be called must-reads. Shout! is strongest however when describing the Beatles' earliest days in Liverpool and Hamburg.

[1] I refer to each of the Beatles by his first name, but everyone else by surname, probably a holdover from my teen years when I would make frequent references to each of the Beatles in conversations with my friends.
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HASH(0x94ae98dc) von 5 Sternen Biased and untrue 3. September 2015
Von SageinOz - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
This book is dreadful and not worth reading by anyone born after 1954 who wouldn't have a clue about the TRUE events of the time. It won praise when first published since it was the first major glimpse into the "Fab Four'. But IS it truth? Norman's book is so biased it will leave anyone who lived through the decade of Beatlemania with their head spinning. The author claims “The Beatles were 80% John”...Paul as portrayed as “bossy,” “money obsessed” and an “self-deluding”, George as perennially “cranky” and “an average guitarist who got incredibly lucky” and Ringo as “lucky” and “history's most famous bit part player.” There are so many inaccuracies from the very beginning it's astounding this book was ever considered valid.

Here are a just a few basic, early untruths: 1) Stu Sutcliffe's death - Norman states John had no reaction, yet VIDEO with Astrid Kircherr states he "freaked out". 2) In regards to Stu Sutcliffe's scarf - Norman states Stu gave it to John, yet Stu's sister claims on VIDEO John asked Stu's mother if he "could have it" after Stu's death. 3) Despite VIDEO evidence to the contrary, he insists there were no fans chasing The Beatles at the London Palladium after their appearance in 1963, that there “were even less than eight” girls”. These are just a few of several errors in the beginning of the book. Anyone who knows the history will find continuous errors slanted to paint John as a sometimes harsh though a talented and independent individual; Paul as the saccharine, cloying, egotistical one; George as the nasty, grumpy, untalented one; while Ringo, fortunately, is the only member who fares well but only as a gentle, kind, dismissive member. Personally, I wanted to throw the book away 1/5 of the way through.

I read the entire book only to confirm whether Norman would continue with his outrageous and false portrait of four very young, musical friends caught in the whirl of global fame, total loss of privacy, the crazy 1960's excesses, manipulative financial dealings from corporations and marketeers, and massive creative pressures. Yep, he continued, to the point George receives the worst treatment of all.

Only John fares well. But I was particularly appalled by his seething portraiture of George. Examples: Norman claims George was very mean to the "apple scruffs", those fans who religiously lingered daily at the gates. If so, why is it that only George wrote a song dedicated to these fans? Just read the lyrics of 'Apple Scruffs', George writes, "I love you". Norman paints George so discourteous and mean, that he doesn't even realize his own editorial errors, such as George being the only member of The Beatles to say "hi" to journalists at the Palladium, the only one who sent a tribute to Brian Epstein's funeral, and more, much, much more despite video evidence to the contrary. If George was so nasty, why was he the only Beatle to wave to the paparazzi at Rishikesh when there is VIDEO proof? When Ringo left the group, he returned to find the recording studio covered with flowers. In VIDEOS, Ringo has referred to this touching act as being done ONLY by George. Yet Norman credits Paul, first with a nod to George. Even George's Concert for Bangladesh is dismissed, by not giving it due credit for being the precursor of charitable concerts such as Live Aid. Instead he credits Paul's UK benefit concert that occurred about 4 years later. Finally, Norman claims George is a mediocre guitarist and songwriter, whose only good work occurred during his Beatle days due to the creative influence of Lennon and McCartney. Certainly, his contemporaries have very different and positive things to say about George's musical skill, creativity, humour, kindness, etc., again, just watch Videos and read valid books on The Beatles.

Norman goes on to state that anything George did after The Beatles was in an “irreversible decline”. Even the super group, The Traveling Wilburys, that George pulled together with his friends, Bob Dylan, Roy Orbison, Jeff Lynne and Tom Petty, was dismissed with a very brief, ONE paragraph mention in a book of 500 pages! George's solo song, years later, "Horse To Water", obviously doesn't rate with Norman either, despite it being a terrific blues song, wonderfully sung by Sam Brown during The Concert For George. Again simply watch the VIDEO. Which brings me to George's memorial concert this wasn't even referred to as a 'Concert For George' but as “Eric Clapton And Friends”.

The continued inaccuracies and outright untruths due to Norman's malicious editorializing makes this book a pure attempt of pretentious self aggrandizing, pretending to have been an “insider” when in fact he was not. His quotes are taken out of context almost constantly, to slant the narrative in his biased direction; “The Beatles were 80% John.” The extolling of "legendary" John is due to Norman's own acknowledgement that John had been his “favourite Beatle” but it also becomes clear why later. Norman had been one of the few journalists that Yoko Ono ever allowed into her inner sanctum at the Dakota. Hence, it's all praise for John and Yoko from Norman. Nope, not a good book.

So sad that anything Yoko touches regarding The Beatles, even by way of an author or scriptwriter, usually results in the do the following: hail John, underrate Paul, malign George and, cuddle Ringo as the benign and unimportant member. Excuse me, but unimportant? What is Rock and Roll without a solid drum beat? So no, Ringo was not insignificant! Nor was George lucky to be in The Beatles. Simply watch early VIDEO, such as 'Till There Was You un Solo De George Harrison', or 'The Beatles - Kansas City', you will see for yourself that George was their lead guitarist from the very beginning and a guitarist who only got better with time. So please, steer clear of this book if you want a truthful account of The Bealtes history. All FOUR made The Beatles the unique and fascinating musical sensation they were, and with whom music fans are still fascinated to this day.

Is Norman's book even well written? It's verbose and some sentences aren't even sentences. Give this book a miss. For Beatles' fans who experienced the era, it will be maddening; for Beatles' fans of younger generations it will be misleading. He even trashes The Beatles Anthology by claiming it is a “laughably incomplete and doctored account'. That's the pot calling the kettle black for sure! The anthology was fine, it is his book which is laughably incomplete and doctored. Watch videos and read accurate and unbiased books. This is not. Praise Yoko. Norman does.
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HASH(0x94ae9948) von 5 Sternen Great biography. 24. September 2012
Von SquarePeg - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
This is a thorough biography that reads like a novel. Norman is obviously a John fan, not a Paul fan, but he's probably pretty fair in his observations.
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