Aug 312011


What’s the most hurtful act committed by anyone in or closely associated wth The Beatles? It could be a recording, a guest appearance, a public statement, a private affair, an actual felony, or whatever by anyone in or closely associated with The Beatles. If you need examples of what it means to be “in or closely associate with” the band, this old thread may help.

If Paul McCartney‘s dispicable treatment of Hamish Stuart doesn’t take the cake, I propose that George Martin producing America may be the most hurtful act committed by anyone in or closely associated with The Beatles. When I learned, as a Beatles-obsessed boy, that he produced America’s big hit records I felt sick in the stomach, like I’d learned some horrible secret about a favorite uncle or teacher. I still feel that way.


  42 Responses to “What’s the Most Hurtful Act Committed by Anyone In or Closely Associated With The Beatles?”

  1. pudman13

    The first thing that comes to mind is this guy:

    John Lennon foolishly championed him. Lennon was always over his head when it came to politics, if you ask me.

  2. I think that album of Beatles covers George produced featuring Celine Dion, Jim Carrey, Robin Williams etc. is way worse.

    The whole All-Starr band thing is a continual embarrassment. Has anyone seen the Rock ‘n’ Roll Fantasy Camp reality show currently on VH1 Classic, featuring former Ringo crony Mark Hudson? Man, that guy.

    HandMade films made some classics (Time Bandits, Withnail and I) and some real stinkers (Shanghai Surprise, this piece of shit I once tried to watch:

    And of course, I get miffed that every time McCartney plays New York these days, he has to bring Billy Joel on stage. You want to impress me, Paul? Bring up Woody Allen to play clarinet on “Honey Pie”!

    I realize I am veering way beyond the theme of this thread, but I felt like venting.

  3. My imdb link appears to be broken. Search for the film Cold Dog Soup, starring Frank Whaley and Randy Quaid.

  4. misterioso

    Give My Regards to Broad Street?

  5. That album is way worse, but by that point, with an 80-year-old George Martin, did it really hurt you? Vent on, regardless!

  6. BigSteve

    The Sgt. Pepper movie.

  7. misterioso

    “Don’t Let Me Down.” Sorry, I was momentarily possessed by the spirit of tonyola! Just a joke, friends.

  8. Although it’s their music and they signed off on it, was anyone in or closely associated with the band actually involved? Is this another black mark on Sir George’s record?

  9. George Martin producing Ultravox?

  10. BigSteve

    Frome Wikipedia: “The Beatles producer George Martin served as musical director, conductor, arranger and producer of the Sgt. Pepper film soundtrack album.” Billy Preston’s in it too.

  11. Oh, George… And Billy, of course – how could I have forgotten his work in that film? Gotta deal with it, right?

  12. misterioso

    Jeeez. Let’s not forget his memorable work with the Little River Band, either.

    So, George Martin’s non-Beatle work is mostly…um…how to put this…appalling? It seems his least appalling non-Beatle work would be producing Gerry and the Pacemakers and Billy J. Kramer and the Dakotas, unless someone wants to make a case for Beck’s Blow by Blow or Cheap Trick’s All Shook Up.

    Or No Place to Run by UFO.

  13. tonyola

    George produced Adam Ant, too.

  14. tonyola

    The most hurtful? Paul’s association with Michael Jackson. Not only did it lead to two dreadful collaborations, but Paul taught Michael about buying the rights to music. It ended up with MJ buying the rights to the Beatles catalog a few years later.

  15. For shame, Uncle George, for shame!

  16. misterioso

    Not to mention “The Girl Is Mine.”

  17. BigSteve

    Ringo appeared in The Return of Bruno, the odious Bruce Willis vehicle.

  18. How did that make you feel, BigSteve?

  19. tonyola

    Now that I possess you I’m not letting go. I’ll have you listening to Gong and Gentle Giant even if it kills you.

  20. saturnismine

    And “Caveman”? Where is that on the odiousness scale?

  21. misterioso

    This is sounding like the worst sci-fi movie ever–or, at least, with the worst soundtrack.

  22. Have you ever seen Caveman? I did. I didn’t think it was bad – or if it was bad it was at least interesting. If Robert Altman had directed it film snobs and Altman fans would be lauding its “subtle charms,” as we do his film Popeye.

  23. I started to watch Caveman at the height of my Beatles obsession (age 10 or so) and turned it off after a half-hour. And I made it all the way through Broad Street!

  24. misterioso

    Agreed, it is utterly unwatchable. I have no recollection of Popeye being any good, either.

  25. alexmagic

    McCartney visited the set of Spies Like Us in early 1985 during filming to get some inspiration for the theme song he’d agreed to write. While he was there, Chevy Chase was really insistent on pulling pranks on the cast and kept needling Paul to help him get one over Aykroyd.

    As it turns out, fellow co-star Bernie Casey was a huge fan of Wings. He’d just come off doing Never Say Never Again and, in preparation for that, had gone back and watched all the “official” Bond movies, which meant hearing “Live And Let Die” for the first time and discovering the Wings catalog. He especially loved London Town, it turns out. So, as you can imagine, he was really eager to meet Paul during this rare set visit

    Anyway, Chase saw all this as an opportunity and, long story short, McCartney is hanging around telling a rapt Ayrkoyd the story about how he and Lennon were watching SNL that one time and were going to go down to the studio, but it’s just a distraction so that Bernie Casey can come up from behind and give Dan Aykroyd a wedgie (which Paul had never heard of before).

    Unfortunately, Bernie Casey was an ex-NFL star and still incredibly strong, so his playful wedgie accidentally turned into a full-on Atomic Wedgie on Aykroyd, and it hurt so much that Aykroyd literally passed out from it. Casey was horrified by what he’d done and wouldn’t come out of his trailer for the rest of the shoot. Paul was thrown off the set by John Landis when Chevy Chase blamed him for the whole incident. And Dan Aykroyd was so traumatized by what happened that he didn’t make another movie for two years, and when he finally did, the films he made were Dragnet and Caddyshack II.

    And that’s the most hurtful act committed by anyone in or closely associated with The Beatles.

  26. mockcarr

    You have to admit, that wedgie set him up for his role in Dragnet.

  27. Does anyone like the Mary Hopkin Postcard album Paul produced?– when I was a teenybopper (in full on Beatles obessive mode) bought it in the cutouts cause it was on Apple records. I never got it. Probably not the most embarrasing thing ever, but shattered my illusion of all things the Beatles touch being great.

  28. tonyola

    Yes, Mary Hopkin was too twee and precious for words. She had a drecky hit “Those Were the Days” in late 1968, and Postcard was pretty dire.

    However, not every thing Paul touched was evil. He produced the single “Urban Spaceman” for the Bonzo Dog Band and saw to it that the group appeared in the Magical Mystery Tour movie singing “Death Cab for Cutie”. Easily one of the most entertaining parts of the film.

  29. cliff sovinsanity

    George, for suggesting that Jeff Lynne produce Free As A Bird, and too a lesser degree, John, for suggesting Phil Spector to “clean up” the Get Back sessions.

  30. Oats,

    The movie seems really ill-conceived, strictly by the casting, but the book, Cold Dog Soup, is probably my favorite. I HIGHLY recommend. Really.

  31. saturnismine

    These are offenses, to be sure, but they’re not worse than Caveman.

  32. saturnismine

    Re. Mary Hopkin, the song “Goodbye” is about the only thing by her I can stomach. But Paul’s acoustic demo of the song is much better.

  33. So Caveman was a big drop off from Ringo’s solo music output? I’m not looking for the “worst” act committed but the most hurtful. Hey, if Caveman hurt you, who am I to argue? There’s no right or wrong answer; I just want to make sure people understand the question.

    I still say that if you put Ringo’s performance in Caveman alongside Robin Williams’ Popeye you’d be surprised.

    How ’bout the Braves reacquiring Matt Diaz? I HATE seeing that guy in a Braves uniform facing the Phillies. He may be an all-time Phillies Killer.

  34. shawnkilroy

    whoever it was at Apple Corp that fucked the Badfinger dudes into hanging themselves.

  35. When I listened to “Whole Lotta Yoko” on the Rolling Stones’ Rock and Roll Circus I think I lost 35% of my hearing


  36. mockcarr

    What did your tarot card reader say about December 8th, 1980, Yoko? Fuck that.

  37. saturnismine

    Nahh…Caveman didn’t hurt.

    And Ringo’s has more comedic flair than people think.

    You know, Don Sutton is in the broadcast booth for the Braves, and he usually does a great job of being subtle about his homer-ish-ness, but he was very excited about the possibilities of Diaz vs. the Phils in the playoffs, which had me scared. He has expressed nothing but respect, bordering on awe, for the Phils all year. But last night, I heard some fire in his voice. Didn’t like it.

  38. I think each of the fabs has there own cross to bear but the two biggest:

    John – his whole working class hero schtick (like he worked a real job)

    Paul – when he tried to get the Lennon/McCartney songwriting credit reversed

  39. jeangray


  40. jeangray


  41. jeangray

    To expand on andyr’s point, Paul’s whole desire in the last decade to prove that he was the “most creative” Beatle has been particularly distateful.

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