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The Beatles: The Authorised Biography Audiobook

The Beatles: The Authorised Biography

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Publisher's Summary

There's only one book that ever truly got inside the Beatles, and this is it....

During 1967 and 1968, Hunter Davies spent 18 months with the Beatles at the peak of their powers as they defined a generation and rewrote popular music. As their only-ever authorised biographer, he had unparalleled access - not just to John, Paul, George, and Ringo, but to friends, family, and colleagues. He collected a wealth of intimate and revealing material that makes this the classic Beatles book - the one all other biographers look to. Hunter Davies remained close with the band and as such has had access to more information over the years.

This 40th anniversary edition contains new material which has never been revealed before, from the author's archives and from the Beatles themselves, that will bring new insights to their legend.

©1968, 1985, 2002, 2009 Hunter Davies (P)2014 Audible, Inc.

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  • Mr. David Walker
    Cowbit, Lincolnshire, England
    8/10/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Surprised"

    As I have read a lot of Beatles books I was reluctant to listen to this audio book because I thought that I had a good understanding of the Beatles.
    I dont think I have ever got through listening to an audio book so quick.
    Really interesting and well structured and with the additions from Hunter Davies brings the story upto date.
    The narration is first class and I would recommend this to anybody as a really good listen and also to anybody like me who thought that they already most things about the Beatles.
    I guarantee you will be engrossed by this audio book and also at times surprised.
    Thank you Audible for a great audio book.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • P. Francis
    herts,england
    1/9/17
    Overall
    "Liverpool or Birmingham?"

    It's a good listen,if a little sugar coated due to being an official book authorised by the Beatles during the pepper period.
    The narrator is good except his total inability to do a Liverpool accent, he does brummie.this gets very annoying listening to john Lennon quoted with the wrong accent.
    Why oh why did someone not spot this when it was being recorded?
    It's very important to get the regional accents right,particularly when it comes to the people's republic of Liverpool!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • S Tickner
    Exeter, UK
    6/4/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "comprehensive!"

    It was a long slog but ultimately kept me engaged. I'm not a huge Beatles fan but they're a fascination and as a music fan, I found it a really good listen. The narrator does his best to emulate Liverpudlian accents and they're not too bad. There's a lot of detail in there but if that's what you're after, then get stuck in.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • G.pollock
    11/4/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Superb"

    Loved this listen. Kept going for just one more chapter. Would reccommend to fans and just those with a little interest.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • AlbP
    Wirral, Mside United Kingdom
    7/21/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great Biography of the Beatles"

    Easy to listen to with interesting stories from someone who knew the Beatles and their families

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Phil
    6/6/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "If you read only one Beatles Biography..."

    Hunter Davies has written 'the' fundemental historical account of the Beatles. I can't imagine that anyone has succeeded in getting closer, and then committing to paper, such an unabashed, unbiased and unphased account of the band.

    At no stage does Hunter Davies seem awestruck or overshadowed by the people that he is describing. Nor does he ever seem to treat them unfairly as individuals. His treatment of Ringo, for example - so often over looked and subject to so much lazy journalism, is given every bit as much attention as John Lennon or Paul McCartney.

    There are no punches being pulled here either - and if you're looking for a rose tinted event that is going to stay away from unfortunate truths, this probably isn't the book for you.

    In the course of the journey, not only do you get an insight into this band (which frankly changed so much in pop culture) - but you get an insight into the post-modern condition of extreme fame (fame at the greatest outer reaches of sanity).

    Bizarre human behaviour is included - such as the American hotel that saved the pillow cases the band slept on, cut them up, and sold them in squares. The misery inflicted on the band when they were completely stripped of their ability to walk down the street when 'Beatlemania' was at it's height. Four young men under the tedium of house arrest, waiting for their next performance.

    The tragic circumstances of both John Lennon's murder and the knife attack on George Harrison in the presence of his wife - both are examined in some moving detail. The whole time you see these events unfolding, not with abstract celebrity figures, but with complicated intimate real life people.

    It's a great book, and it's a super performance, and I don't think you'll be unhappy.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Paul Townsend
    6/7/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "The fairy tale told as it happened"

    Wished I had heard this version of the Beatles story before now. Lots of stuff I have heard before, but only because others used this text.

    Definitive. Read and learn how history is made!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Goldfrapper
    Devon, United Kingdom
    5/17/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "This is the definitive biography"

    There is no such thing as a 'definitive' history. If all four Beatles were alive today and you were able to ask each of them about one important event in their story, you would get four different accounts. However, this is as near as you can get, the author having got insider status and got to know the band by befriending them and accompanying them on many critical episodes in their defining period, 1967-68. He tells it 'as it was' with each member of the band and their partners and associates agreeing to interviews, as well as his own observations of what went on.

    It's a slightly strange narrative historically, in that the early period plus the first stages of Beatlemania are covered thoroughly and in depth, and even more so, the period Davies was with them, from 1967 to 1968. However, the years in between (1964 - 1966) are rather skated over, with little attention given to the musical progress made during this time; the albums from Beatles For Sale to Rubber Soul are virtually unmentioned, and even Revolver gets little coverage.

    The most fascinating part of the book (for me), is the long section where he describes how some songs for Sgt Pepper's, Magical Mystery Tour, and 'The White Album' were composed, and process involved in exploring lyrical composition.

    The long postscript in the 1985 edition sets an appropriate climate for the Beatles' place in rock history, a time when Lennon had already been murdered; plus a few missing anecdotes discouraged from the original 1968 edition were allowed.

    The most recent edition starts with a lengthy exposition of how Davies got to write the book, and the perspectives he gained from his allowed access to the band; what he could and could not include, etc. Sets the scene well for what follows and gives some critical overview that the readers of the 1968 edition would miss, especially given that Davies himself wasn't to know - in mid-1968 - how events would pan out over the next two years, and beyond.

    There has been some criticism of the narrator's accent. This is understandable, especially from someone like myself who grew up in Liverpool. However, he does do Scouse, posh, American, and neutral, so he has a demanding brief. Although his Liverpool accent is barely passable, he does attempt to impersonate each Beatle's way of speaking, the only notable failure being Paul. On the whole, his voice is interesting and carries authority - I enjoyed listening.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Amazon Customer
    3/13/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "I want to live in this book"

    It a an extremely well written and recorded book I couldn't stop listening. Some audio books take me nearly a month to finish, this one took less than a week. The story is extraordinary and makes you want to go and meet the people involved. Highly recommended.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Amazon Customer
    12/1/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "This book is of interest to Beatles fans"

    The book is of the time and a primary source but as the author points out in the introduction, the book was heavily edited, sugar-coated and made to suit a fake public image which the Beatles themselves were getting pretty fed up with at the time. An important book but not the whole truth or detail of what was going on at the time.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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