Beatles City

Beatles City

By Reach Podcasts

Welcome to Beatles City, the podcast that brings you the story of the band that shook the world from the place where it all began. Join us on a journey along the sandstone-lined streets of John Lennon’s childhood Woolton, into the Kensington living room-turned-recording studio where the Quarrymen cut their first record and down the steep steps into the Cavern’s cellar nightclub. This podcast is brought to you by the Liverpool Echo. Hosts Ellen Kirwin and Laura Davis.


Ringo Starr

In this special bonus episode taken from his press conference, Ringo Starr shares the experience of making his new EP Zoom In during lockdown, reminisces about his Hamburg days and says playing with The Beatles was full of laughs
22/03/21·39m 17s

Happy birthday John

Today, we mark what should have been John Lennon's 80th birthday with a celebration of his life in the words of the people who knew him.They include his sister Julia Baird, 'Fifth Beatle' Pete Best, the Liver Birds, art college friend Helen Anderson and Quarryman Rod Davis.Presenters: Laura Davis & Ellen Kirwin
09/10/20·15m 26s

Beatles myths and conspiracy theories

This week we hear from Cavern Club tour guide Dale Roberts, whose job it is to dispel some of the wacky stories surrounding the band.He tells us the truth behind some of the myths and that famous conspiracy theory about Paul McCartney.Presenters: Ellen Kirwin & Laura Davis
05/10/20·31m 24s

The Beatles' musical influences with Peter Hooton

Peter Hooton, of the Liverpool band The Farm and chair of the city’s Beatles Legacy Group, is this week's guest.He is determined to give credit to the musicians who inspired the group, including Black American singer-songwriters such as Chuck Berry.Presenters: Ellen Kirwin & Laura Davis
28/09/20·28m 58s

Mal Evans' missing archive

Mal Evans was a part time bouncer at the Cavern Club when Beatles manager Brian Epstein asked him to become the band’s roadie.He travelled with them on tour and even appeared in some of their films - and along the way it’s thought he collected things for a personal archive that was lost when he died.This story inspired this week’s guest, author Caroline Smailes, whose book The Finding of Martha Lost features Mal’s missing belongings.Presenters: Laura Davis & Ellen Kirwin
21/09/20·29m 7s

Fab 4 Taxi Tours

This week we’re taking a tour of some of The Beatles’ haunts in Liverpool city centre - as well as places that are key to the story of the band.Our guide is Phil Gerrard, one of the drivers for Fab 4 Taxi Tours, which takes thousands of tourists and locals around Beatles sites each year.Presenters: Laura Davis & Ellen KirwinFind out more about Fab 4 Taxi Tours at
14/09/20·49m 14s

The Argentine John Lennon

Javier Parisi, known as the Argentine John Lennon, is so like him that even John’s and family friends find it uncanny.Presenters: Ellen Kirwin & Laura Davis
07/09/20·26m 39s

Brian Epstein's stolen briefcase

We get a sneak preview of some of the fascinating new items of memorabilia about to go on display at the Beatles Story attraction in Liverpool. They include Brian Epstein's stolen briefcase and T-shirts designed by Ringo Starr.Presenters: Laura Davis & Ellen Kirwin
31/08/20·19m 57s

Stuart Sutcliffe

Stuart Sutcliffe met John Lennon at art school and was talked into joining his band and going on the road to Hamburg.But his passion for art quickly overtook his interest in music and he decided to stay behind in Germany with his girlfriend Astrid Kirchherr.Suffering from intense headaches, he later collapsed and died from a brain haemorrhage.We talk to the man who runs his fanclub, Beatles expert David Bedford.Presenters: Laura Davis & Ellen Kirwin
24/08/20·31m 51s

Craig Brown - One Two Three Four

Our guest this week is satirist and writer Craig Brown, perhaps best known for his weekly Private Eye column and biography of Princess Margaret. He tells us about his new book One Two Three Four: The Beatles in Time.
17/08/20·25m 26s

Linda McCartney's photos

Linda McCartney discovered photography almost by accident, accompanying a friend to a class in Arizona that would inspire a lifelong passion.She met her husband, who we all know is the Beatle Paul McCartney, while on a photographic assignment and spent their relationship capturing their lives together.An exhibition of her work opened at the Walker Art Gallery in Liverpool this weekend so we’re launching this new series of the podcast from the show.
10/08/20·28m 56s

Pete Price

Liverpool radio presenter and comedian Pete Price can fondly remember the rise of The Beatles in the city and was even responsible for a protest outside the Cavern when Pete Best was sacked from the band.He also remembers the anger felt by music fans in the Cavern when The Beatles became international stars. Fans wanted to keep them the Cavern’s little secret.Presenters: Ellen Kirwin & Laura Davis For information regarding your data privacy, visit
20/01/20·17m 32s

Helen Anderson

Helen Anderson studied at Liverpool College of Art at the same time as John Lennon and his future wife Cynthia Powell - and counted them both as friends for the rest of their lives.She was lucky enough to watch John, Paul and George rehearse in a room at the art school.And when Lennon wanted some new clothes, he would often sketch them for her and ask her to make them.Presenters: Ellen Kirwin & Laura Davis For information regarding your data privacy, visit
13/01/20·36m 3s

St Peter's Church Fete

July 6, 1967 is etched in musical history as the day John Lennon was introduced to Paul McCartney by their mutual friend Ivan Vaughan.The moment of their meeting would have gone unremembered had it not been the beginning of one of the world’s greatest musical partnerships.This week we go to St Peter’s Church Hall to meet two women who were both there that day - Pam Cottrell and Jennie Lovegrove.Presenters: Laura Davis and Ellen Kirwin. For information regarding your data privacy, visit
06/01/20·21m 40s

Stories behind Liverpool's Beatles statues

From Eleanor Rigby to Hamburg-era John Lennon, there are many statues here in Liverpool that are inspired by The Beatles and their songs - including quite a few that even most Scousers may not know.This week, we take a walk along Mathew Street and the Cavern Quarter with tour guide Charlotte Martin to discover the fascinating stories behind them.Presenters: Ellen Kirwin and Laura Davis For information regarding your data privacy, visit
30/12/19·24m 27s

Anton Mullan

Our guest this week has forgotten more encounters with fame than most people have ever had.Anton Mullan was a rising star of Liverpool’s music scene in the 1960s with his band The Trilogy - and even signed a contract with EMI - but his heavy drinking got in the way of his success.Now recovered, he has had a fascinating career in television and the music industry - all helped along by a wise piece of advice given to him by John Lennon.Presenters: Ellen Kirwin and Laura Davis For information regarding your data privacy, visit
23/12/19·32m 41s

Giles Martin at Abbey Road

We’re journeying out of Liverpool for this week’s episode - to Abbey Road Studios - to speak to the son of legendary Beatles producer George Martin.As well as being a hugely successful music producer in his own right, Giles Martin worked with his dad on the Love album for the Cirque du Soleil show of the same name and has since remastered a number of Beatles albums, including the pioneering 1967 record Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.A new Dolby Atmos version of the music is being launched here in Liverpool later this week - giving fans an immersive experience that aims to sound as though the band is playing live in the space.Presenter: Laura DavisWith thanks to Tate Liverpool, Apple and Abbey Road for arranging the interview. For information regarding your data privacy, visit
16/12/19·28m 44s

Is Liverpool making the most of The Beatles?

Liverpool is famous all around the world as the birthplace of The Beatles - but it’s something the city hasn’t always taken advantage of.While there are plenty of places where fans can indulge their passion for the band, there is plenty more the city could be doing to benefit from the Beatles connection.Our guests this week have strong opinions on what Liverpool should be doing to attract tourists and give them an experience they will never forget.They are Liverpool native, Kevin McManus, head of UNESCO City of Music, who is tasked with drawing up a music strategy for the city, and Kenneth Womack, who was in Liverpool to give advice based on his own involvement in the Bruce Springsteen Archives and Center for American Music in New Jersey.Presenter: Laura Davis For information regarding your data privacy, visit
09/12/19·37m 32s

The Liver Birds

When John Lennon met this week’s guests backstage at The Cavern he had a message for them: “Girls don’t play guitars.”But that only made The Liver Birds even more determined to become the world’s first all-girl rock 'n' roll group.The band’s two remaining members, Mary McGlory and Sylvia Wiggins (nee Saunders), share their memories of becoming one of the top attractions at the famous Star Club in Hamburg.With thanks to Liverpool's Royal Court Theatre for setting up the interview. For information regarding your data privacy, visit
02/12/19·26m 57s

Julia Baird

Julia Baird is one of John Lennon’s younger sisters. She was there when he learned to play music with their mother, and she had to try to cope with his death in private as the whole world mourned.She speaks to us in the offices of The Cavern, where she is one of the directors. For information regarding your data privacy, visit
25/11/19·42m 15s

Series 3 trailer

Beatles City returns from Liverpool for a third series - here are some of the highlights you can look forward to. For information regarding your data privacy, visit
18/11/19·4m 25s

Bonus - Abbey Road 50th anniversary with Kenneth Womack

This week marks the 50th anniversary of Abbey Road being released andwe’re marking the occasion with a special bonus episode of BeatlesCity podcast.Our guest is Beatles expert Kenneth Womack, whose new book Solid Stateis billed as ‘the most definitive account yet of the writing,recording, mixing and reception’ of The Beatles final album. For information regarding your data privacy, visit
23/09/19·15m 54s

Gavin Pring - Emmy-winning George Harrison tribute act

Our final guest of this season is the Emmy Award-winning George Harrison tribute artist Gavin Pring.The Liverpool-born musician now lives in America, where he has a huge list of Beatles-related accomplishments to his name.Gavin performed as George six nights a week on the Las Vegas strip for over a decade, won an Emmy with his band mates for The Fab Four's 2012 PBS television special and even performed on the same stage as Paul McCartney during a tribute show held in George Harrison's honour. For information regarding your data privacy, visit
01/09/19·35m 47s

Strawberry Field

When John Lennon wrote Strawberry Fields Forever it was inspired by a real place - a Salvation Army children’s home with a wooded garden where he used to play.In the decades since it was released as a single in 1967, hundreds of thousands of Beatles fans have paid pilgrimage to the site.Next month, they will finally be able to go behind the famous red gates as Strawberry Field opens to the public after a redevelopment.Laura Davis meets the centre’s mission director, Major Kathy Versfeld of the Salvation Army. For information regarding your data privacy, visit
25/08/19·18m 40s

Geoff Rhind and Vladislav Ginzburg - Beatles photographers

There are certain Beatles photographs that stick in the mind - from the chance snap of The Quarrymen playing together on the day John Lennon met Paul McCartney to Astrid Kirchherr’s carefully posed art images of the band in Hamburg.In this week’s episode presenters Laura Davis and Ellen Kirwin are joined by the man who took that first picture as a boy in Woolton - as well as Astrid Kirchherr’s archivist, Vladislav Ginzburg.  For information regarding your data privacy, visit
18/08/19·33m 56s

Pete Wylie and Anton Eager - ‘The Beatles Effect’

This week we’re looking at ‘The Beatles effect’ on young musicians growing up in Liverpool.What’s it like to know that no matter how successful you become, you will never be the biggest band from your home city?‘Part-time rock star, full-time legend’ Pete Wylie and Anton Eager of The Cheap Thrills share their experiences with our presenters Laura Davis and Ellen Kirwin.Produced by Michael Pearson For information regarding your data privacy, visit
11/08/19·48m 19s

1960s Cavern DJ Billy Butler relives his time with the Beatles

Liverpool legend Billy Butler is known across Merseyside for his famous BBC radio show Hold Your Plums but was also known for his time being a DJ in the Cavern during the 1960s.In this episode Laura Davis speaks to the presenter inside the famous Mathew street venue about his time in the club and shares memories of meeting the Beatles for the first time and how he was the one they wanted to impress.Presenters: Laura Davis, Ellen KirwinProducer: Michael Pearson For information regarding your data privacy, visit
28/07/19·23m 17s

Step inside Paul McCartney's and John Lennon's childhood homes

Colin and Sylvia Hall probably know the childhood homes of Paul McCartney and John Lennon better than than their own.In fact they even spent several years living inside Mendips, the house on Menlove Avenue here in Liverpool where John lived with his Aunt Mimi and Uncle George.It's their job, as National Trust custodians, to look after Mendips and 20 Forthlin Road, where Paul McCartney grew up and take visitors on tours of the properties.Join Laura Davis and producer Michael Pearson on this intimate tour of these two houses and the special relationship the couple have to these iconic landmarks. For information regarding your data privacy, visit
22/07/19·1h 7m

Mark Lewisohn - one of the world's leading authorities on The Beatles

This week's guest is responsible for piecing together one of the most detailed books in Beatles' history.Dubbed the world's foremost authority on The Beatles, Mark Lewisohn spent 10 years writing and researching his 900-page book Tune In and it's only the first of three volumes he has planned.You can get ahold of Tune In by clicking here.Presenter: Ellen KirwinProducer: Michael Pearson For information regarding your data privacy, visit
15/07/19·17m 37s

Behind the Scenes at a Beatles Auction

We eavesdropped as New York-based memorabilia experts Julian’s Auctions spent a day at the Beatles Story here in Liverpool, evaluating the scraps of paper, old photographs and other intriguing finds brought to them for valuation by members of the public. For information regarding your data privacy, visit
07/07/19·36m 47s

Chas Newby - The man who was a Beatle for two weeks

The Fab Four may be one of the many nicknames that fans call The Beatles, but in reality the band had a number of different members before the final, famous line-up.Chas Newby was a Beatle for two weeks, playing twice at the Casbah, once at the Grosvenor Ballroom in Wallasey, and at The Beatles’ famous first appearance at Litherland Town Hall.Ellen Kirwin interviews Chas in the middle of a busy Mathew Street over a pint of beer to discuss his time as part of the 'fab four' For information regarding your data privacy, visit
01/07/19·26m 19s

We're back! Danny Boyle, Richard Curtis and Himesh Patel on new Beatles film Yesterday

We're back! This is the first episode in our brand new series of Beatles City and this week we start with a special episode.Can you imagine a world where The Beatles never existed? Or, even more bizarrely, one where you suddenly became the only person who had ever heard their music?In the launch episode of series two, screenwriter Richard Curtis and director Danny Boyle are joined by Himesh Patel, star of the new film Yesterday which imagines just that. For information regarding your data privacy, visit
25/06/19·39m 21s

Sir Paul McCartney

Imagine stepping inside your childhood home 50 years after you had last left it - and finding it almost completely unchanged.This was the surreal experience Paul McCartney had when he took part in the now famous Carpool Karaoke episode - YouTube’s most viewed video of 2018 in the UK.He tells us all about it in this exclusive interview. For information regarding your data privacy, visit
13/01/19·30m 11s

David Bedford

This week’s guest is author, David Bedford. Since being diagnosed with a chronic illness, David talks about how his doctor prescribed him the Beatles. David’s research and writing has led to several books including ‘Liddypool’, and his latest challenge was to research and track down the names of every drummer that has ever played with the Beatles, and there are a lot more than you might expect. For information regarding your data privacy, visit
07/01/19·30m 36s

Inside the mind of Beatles promoter Sid Bernstein

This week we meet the woman who was closest to the man who launched the Beatles’ global fame in the USA.Merle Frimark was a close friend and colleague of Sid Bernstein, who booked Fab Four for their legendary show at Shea Stadium in New York in 1965, which was the first concert to be staged in a stadium.Bernstein, who died in 2013 aged 95, promoted the Fab Four's gigs at Carnegie Hall in New York on their first US tour in 1964. For information regarding your data privacy, visit
31/12/18·32m 43s

Reliving the moment the Quarrymen cut their first record

This week's episode follows on from our trip to Woolton with the Quarrymen and we look back to July 12, 1958, the day John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and John Lowe cut their first record.We speak to Peter Phillips, the grandson of Percy Phillips, the man who owned the Kensington house turned recording studio where history was made in one living room.He also talks about how he continues his family's legacy today and making sure the recording studio lives on. Find out the more here. For information regarding your data privacy, visit
24/12/18·46m 6s

Quarrymen take us to the place John and Paul first met

Original Quarrymen member Rod Davis takes us to the place where Paul McCartney and John Lennon first met - St Peter's Church in Woolton.He's joined with his brother Bernie Davis and the pair exclusively paint a detailed picture of what life was like in the village of Woolton when John and Paul met.Rod also debunks some widely-speculated myths about the Beatles and how the band came to be including a very interesting story about how there's a mistake on the plaque outside St Peter's Church Hall where the pair famously met.Rod played banjo with the Quarrymen from 1956 to mid 1957, he was replaced in the band by Paul. Since 1997 he has been playing guitar for the revived Quarrymen and sharing vocals with Len Garry. For Rod’s story see Hunter Davies’ biography of the Quarrymen. For information regarding your data privacy, visit
17/12/18·50m 10s

Kenneth Womack

Beatles Myths. There are so many it's incredibly hard to tell truth from Fiction. This is where Kenneth Womack comes in. He is a world-renowned authority on the Beatles and their enduring cultural influence.He has spent years throughly investigating the history of the band to ensure his many books on them are built on fact. With his latest project involves a two-volume, full-length biography devoted to the Beatles producer Sir George Martin.In this episode he speaks to Ellen Kirwin about his new book and the fascinating stories behind it including some myths Sir George started himself!You can learn more about Kenneth here. For information regarding your data privacy, visit
10/12/18·31m 3s

Pete Best (Part two)

It was one of the most shocking moments in Merseybeat history and a memory that will live with Pete Best for the rest of his life.This is the second part of our intimate interview with former Beatle, as Pete Best relives the heartbreaking moment he was being let go from the band and replaced by Ringo Starr.Also hear him discuss his relationships with John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Stuart Sutcliffe.His brother Roag Best also talks in more detail some of the special artefacts on display including a fascinating story about some of the antics the Beatles got up to on their first US tour.Find out more about the Magical Beatles Museum on its website. For information regarding your data privacy, visit
03/12/18·33m 25s

Pete Best (part one)

It may be more than half his lifetime ago, but when Pete Best recalls the moment he was sacked by The Beatles his voice still cracks.This is the first part of a deeply personal interview with the former Beatles drummer, who talks us through the incredible experience of seeing John, Paul and George performing together in the Casbah nightclub owned by his mother Mona - and shares what it was really like to be with the group in Hamburg.We speak to the famous 'fifth Beatle' Pete live on Mathew Street, in the Magical Beatles Museum owned by his brother, the avid memorabilia collector Roag Best.Find out more about the Magical Beatles Museum on its website. For information regarding your data privacy, visit
26/11/18·30m 39s

Inside the Cavern Club

Join us in our first episode of Beatles City as we step inside the 'most famous club in the world' - here in the heart of Liverpool.Cavern director Jon Keats takes us on a tour of the music venue that the band played in around 300 times - and where they were discovered by Brian Epstein.Jon busts some Cavern myths, recalls the famous faces that have played there and reveals to co-host Laura Davis why Mathew Street's John Lennon statue has had three different heads.Find out more about The Cavern Club on its website. For information regarding your data privacy, visit
26/11/18·46m 1s

Freda Kelly

She was known by The Beatles as a honorary family member but for millions of fans she was the person who offered a connection to the band.Freda Kelly was secretary to Brian Epstein and The Beatles but was known by people across the globe as the president of the group’s official fan club.Join co-host Ellen Kirwin in this incredibly intimate podcast as she talks with Freda her life before John. Paul, George and Ringo became famous and how she was there for them throughout their rise to fame and global success. For information regarding your data privacy, visit
26/11/18·45m 46s

Beatles City Trailer - Series One

Beatles City, a new podcast that takes you on a journey through the band's early years as told by the people who were there.Listen to your hosts Laura and Ellen as they give a flavour of what you can expect in the first series including an interview with 'Fifth Beatle' Pete Best and a trip down the steps of the famous Cavern Club. For information regarding your data privacy, visit
15/11/18·3m 46s
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