February 12, 2011


More on The Beatles (Anthology) & history on video

And now for something completely different...

I wrote earlier this month about The Beatles, because I came to see some videos I found interesting and likeable, and then found more, and more, and more, and later mentioned

As it happens, this is the beginning of rather a lot, all neatly linked in a series, in chunks of approximately 10 minutes - together more than six hours worth, it seems, some with Spanish subtitles - that is the present internet-record of a DVD series first released in 1996. (*)

Indeed there is a lot more about it and The Beatles in the Wikipedia:

Meanwhile I saw and heard all of The Beatles Anthology, which probably is worth some 6-8 hours of viewing and hearing, and liked it, probably mostly because of the memories it evokes from The Sixties.

But indeed as a documentary it is well done, and is of sociological and psychological and historical interest, answering questions like "what was it like, what did it look like, what did people say and wear" a.s.o., while playing a lot of live video of The Beatles performing their music.

Above I provided the link to the useful lemma The Beatles Anthology in the Wikipedia, which opens as follows

The Beatles Anthology is the name of a documentary series, a set of three double albums and a book, all of which focus on the history of The Beatles. The surviving members of the group participated in the making and approval of the works, which are sometimes referred to collectively as the Anthology project.

The Beatles Anthology documentary series was first broadcast in November 1995, with expanded versions released on VHS in 1996 and on DVD in 2003. The documentary used interviews with The Beatles and their associates to narrate the history of the band as seen through archival footage and performances. The initial volume of the album set was released in conjunction with the documentary in November 1995, with the subsequent two volumes released in 1996. The albums included unreleased performances and outtakes presented in roughly chronological order, along with two new songs based on demo tapes recorded by John Lennon after the group broke up. The book, released in 2000, paralleled the documentary in presenting the group's history through quotes from interviews.

And has as further information i.a. (some links removed here):

Approximately coinciding with the release of the "Free as a Bird" single and Anthology 1 album (the first of three double-CD albums), The Beatles Anthology series of documentaries was broadcast on ITV in the United Kingdom and ABC television in the United States in 1995. The Anthology series takes a form similar to that of the Anthology book, by being a series of first-person accounts by the Beatles themselves, with no linking, external "objective" narration. Footage in the Anthology series features voice-over recordings of all four Beatles to push the narrative of the story, with contributions from their producer, road manager and others. As well as telling their story through archival footage, Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr and George Harrison appear in interview segments recorded exclusively for the series itself; John Lennon appears only in historic archival footage. The Beatles' wives past and present do not appear (excluding archival footage such as video from India and the music video for Harrison's "Something").

The series, which was made over five years of planning and production, is composed of numerous film clips and interviews that present a complete history of the band from the Beatles' own personal perspectives. The series was later released on VHS, laserdisc and as a boxed set of five DVDs.

As I said, I found it interesting and likeable - with the setbacks that I have now Beatle music between my ears, and it does take a considerable amount of time to view all - and did so for various reasons, including the memories it invokes in me, since I was 10-20 from 1960-1970, and the fact that it is history on video, also in a way autobiographical, and that it is pretty extensive, detailed and informed on its subject, as video, on the internet, which is a rather new form of history, that on the internet goes beyond a TV-documentary, supplemented as it is e.g. by the contents linked in Category: The Beatles in the Wikipedia.

Incidentally, two points not made in the quoted abstracts are that the Anthology covers 1960-1970 mostly, and that there are few persons interviewed: The Beatles, their producer George Martin, and two managers, in various capacities, Derek Taylor and Neil Aspinall, appear in the interviews made for the series, but no one else.

Also, it evidently is the version the three remaining Beatles wanted to be publicly known / believed, and rather a lot that already at the time was not my thing - hippiedom, drugs, LSD, the Maharishi (actually, physically also, a minirishi with a squeaky voice), "All You Need Is Love", as practical proposal to approach the problems of life, pop mysticism, Indian music, and more - is fairly lightly touched upon in the documentary.

Anyway... The Beatles may not be your thing, at all, perhaps, but this sort of thing - well researched well presented videos detailing (a view of) the history of something - is a good way to present modern history, or the history of the 20th Century, in a more interesting and indeed also rather different way than when only told in a book, possibly with photographs.

And it would be nice if it in its turn could be somehow embedded in a much more comprehensive history of the 20th Century or The Sixties in multi media, as the phrase is. Since this - "multi media" - is a phrase, the idea is not new, but I must say that I myself have only seen a few rather disappointing CDs about history on the lines of such a format, and little or nothing, in any extensive way, as yet, on the internet - indeed, The Beatles Anthology 1 etc. up to 9 sofar is the best I've seen of this kind, which is another reason to mention it.


(*) I do not know how legal this is, incidentally, nor do I know whether the original CDs are for sale. As it is, and as the internet is, in the form I consumed it by way of the internet, my guess is that it is mostly good advertisement to buy the CDs if you like the music or the interviews. In any case: It is available, and I think it deserves to be available as an interesting video history of The Beatles, mostly as the - then - three remaining Beatles wanted it to be publicly presented, and with registrations of a lot of their music as performed live.

P.S. Corrections must wait till later.

And indeed more to follow in the present video mien, namely about philosophy: Stay tuned - as the phrase is, since I did find some interesting recent videos online about philosophy (and a lot more that is less recent and mostly quite boring).

And maybe I should say that so far this year I have kept up with Recent Changes: Summaries of relevant changes on the site.

As to ME/CFS (that I prefer to call ME):

1. Anthony Komaroff

Ten discoveries about the biology of CFS (pdf)

3. Hillary Johnson

The Why

4. Consensus (many M.D.s) Canadian Consensus Government Report on ME (pdf)
5. Eleanor Stein

Clinical Guidelines for Psychiatrists (pdf)

6. William Clifford The Ethics of Belief
7. Paul Lutus

Is Psychology a Science?

8. Malcolm Hooper Magical Medicine (pdf)

Short descriptions:

1. Ten reasons why ME/CFS is a real disease by a professor of medicine of Harvard.
2. Long essay by a professor emeritus of medical chemistry about maltreatment of ME.
3. Explanation of what's happening around ME by an investigative journalist.
4. Report to Canadian Government on ME, by many medical experts.
5. Advice to psychiatrist by a psychiatrist who understands ME is an organic disease
6. English mathematical genius on one's responsibilities in the matter of one's beliefs:
   "it is wrong always, everywhere, and for anyone, to believe anything upon
     insufficient evidence
7. A space- and computer-scientist takes a look at psychology.
8. Malcolm Hooper puts things together status 2010.

    "Ah me! alas, pain, pain ever, forever!

No change, no pause, no hope! Yet I endure.
I ask the Earth, have not the mountains felt?
I ask yon Heaven, the all-beholding Sun,
Has it not seen? The Sea, in storm or calm,
Heaven's ever-changing Shadow, spread below,
Have its deaf waves not heard my agony?
Ah me! alas, pain, pain ever, forever!
     - (Shelley, "Prometheus Unbound") 

    "It was from this time that I developed my way of judging the Chinese by dividing them into two kinds: one humane and one not. "
     - (Jung Chang)


See also: ME -Documentation and ME - Resources

Maarten Maartensz (M.A. psy, B.A. phi)

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