Ring Out the Old.
Ring in the New.

By Joe Johnson

We finally said goodbye to 2010 and now we look into a crystal ball for what the new 2011 may hold. As Beatle fans, we have much to be thankful for. Mainly, how prominent, promotional and positive Paul McCartney was last year.

His one-off tours and short spurts of brilliant concerts whet the appetite, from The Hollywood Bowl to Harlem, from Brazil to Broadway. Paul's appearance on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon was one of the highlights of the year, performing "Scrambled Eggs" live (see it now in the BBC After Brunch section). The re-mastering of Band on the Run was a great way to look back with new technology (re: the internet) at how the project was dreamed up and taken to fruition. Paul received the Kennedy Center honors and was privileged to sing "Michelle" for Mrs. Obama in the East Room of The White House when he received his Gershwin Prize for Popular Song.

For Beatle Fans, we finally got Beatles on iTunes, though for most of us, it was a mute point, but for newer, or younger and more tech-savvy Beatle fans, it must be FAB. To prove it, iTunes sold one million songs in its first week ("Here Comes the Sun" was the most downloaded). Apple and Capitol finally released their catalog of Beatle buddies and sidemen, in the 17-CD Apple Records Box Set which included an amazing 41 bonus tracks from Badfinger alone and "Those Were the Days" in five languages!

Ringo's ASB tour got a huge spike when Paul appeared to sing "Birthday" live with him and the band on Ringo’s 70th, one of the most viewed videos of the year (see our downloads section). We met Gary Wright at The Fest and realized how "connected" he really was to George and Ringo, having played on nearly every Harrison solo song.

In October, we took time to get to know John again, with the Lennon Signature Box (awarded to Kevin Wolf in our Mind Games Contest) and CD remasters, including some cool demos and outtakes as part of the box, plus the Stripped Down Mixes of Double Fantasy. We saw Julian, Sean, Cyn and Yoko "Come Together" in New York for Julian's photography exhibition on what would have been his Dad's 70th birthday. We celebrated John for that and remembered his passing 30 years later with candles, ceremonies, flowers and song (see Ambrosio Hernandez's photos from Strawberry Fields).

Also, we noted Shannon's illustrious painting, The Nine Faces of John she delivered to a huge Liverpool crowd in early December. So what does 2011 hold for Beatle Fans? Tomorrow Never Knows. Shea Stadium on DVD? Let it Be? The song films or videos? Another pairing of Paul and Ringo.

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Whatever it is, we'll celebrate it here in The Beatle Brunch Club and on board our Beatles Tribute Cruise in March. A Splendid Time is Guaranteed for All. Book the cruise today! I’d like to thank you once again for your support, participation, celebration and love. Cheers in the new year.