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The Beatles: A Private View Hardcover – Bargain Price, September 30, 2003

4.7 out of 5 stars 13 customer reviews

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Hardcover, Bargain Price, September 30, 2003
$45.61 $6.32

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Editorial Reviews

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

The With The Beatles album cover was taken soon after I met them for the first time inBournemouth. Since the photograph was needed urgently, I had to improvise a studiosituation in the hotel. The dining room was the most suitable location. There was a broadsidelight from the windows and a deep maroon curtain that could be pulled behind themto create a dark background. They came down at midday wearing their black polo-neckedsweaters. It seemed natural to photograph them in black-and-white wearing their customarydark clothes. It gave unity to the image. There was no makeup, hairdresser or stylist--justmyself, The Beatles and a camera--a Pentax SLR with a 180mm telephoto lens. The lensaperture was set at F22 to ensure depth of focus between Ringo in the foreground and Paul at the back. The telephoto lensalso compressed them into a tight group shot with all the heads more or less the same size. They had to fit into the squareformat of the cover, so rather than have them all in a line, I put Ringo in the bottom right corner. He was the last to jointhe group, he was the shortest and he was the drummer! Even so, he still had to bend his knees to get to the right level--and look natural!

Some people have thought the image was a montage, but it was a single shot. The printing of the sleeve turned out much darker than expected. A lot of the textured quality in the reproduction print was lost. In fact the English version looked like four white faces in a coal cellar. Fortunately, the American version, with the title changed to Meet The Beatles, was the same black-and-white photograph with a blue tone, showing more detail in the shadow area.

This cover shot was an extension of my black-and-white jazz photography and the idea for the composition came from a photograph taken earlier the same year of three graphic designers (see previous page). The picture had a mood and directness that was the antithesis of the way groups usually appeared on album covers at that time. George Martin deserves credit for supporting this approach since colour was the norm for pop albums. Although George ran the subsidiary Parlophone label, the cover had to be approved by the management at EMI.

My original idea was to feature the picture of The Beatles across the whole album without logos or titles. By then, The Beatles were famous and their faces well known. This would have been a truly original breakthrough. But the proposal was too radical for EMI, and at the time neither Brian nor The Beatles had authority over those decisions. That changed a few years later with Rubber Soul.

I was originally offered the equivalent of $50 for the cover, which was the standard fee, but a far cry from what photographers make for covers today. However, Brian did support me in persuading EMI to pay double their normal fee--$100. A bargain considering the number of albums sold worldwide and the description in the New York Times Book Review that it was the "quintessential rock album cover." --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 176 pages
  • ISBN-10: 1592261760
  • ASIN: B000HWZ0LK
  • Product Dimensions: 12.3 x 11.7 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,087,762 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I received this book by accident about 6 months ago; it was given to me by a friend of a friend, along with many others. This book was, by every means, spectacular...Robert Freeman trailed the Beatles for several years throughout their career as a band, and then going on to chronicle the solo artists as well. His writing style keeps the reader's eyes glued to the pages, not only because of it's pictorial wonderments, but also because the author has an amazing talent for writing. I am the daughter of a 60's female Beatles die-hard, and listening to her stories, combined with the perspectives and views within these pages, brought it all to life for me. I recommend this book to ANYONE that is a fan of the Beatles, no matter the generation; although FIRST GENERATION BEATLES FANS...this book is A MUST!! Being that it is an out of print book, even more reason to own it; it will definitely be a platinum collector's item someday, mark these words...
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Format: Hardcover
This book is a treat anybody would love. There are a plethora of delightful photographs that will make readers, from the inveterate fans to those just becoming familiar with the Fab 4 feel as if they are "meeting" the Beatles.
This author has a real flair for natural expression and the writing style is crisp and fresh. This is a book with something to offer everyone and I cannot recommend it highly enough. As the only Beatles' fan in my family, I've "introduced" many relatives to the wonderful phenomenon that was the Beatles!
This one gets a stellar endorsement and an enthusiastic "YEAH, YEAH, YEAH!" from me! I love it!
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By A Customer on November 13, 2003
Format: Hardcover
For anyone who thinks this is just a re-issue of the the previous book, think again. There are something like 30 "new" pictures. I just loved the new look on some of the older one's like Lennon with the Panda that's now in color and the pic of The Beatles with Mick Jagger really brings you back. This book was such a delight, I purchased the collector's edition that includes a limited edition print for my husband. At the price listed here on Amazon, you will not be disappointed by this book.
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By A Customer on October 21, 2003
Format: Hardcover
This book makes you feel like you really met the Beatles! The NEW book has a revised text that is great and many new pictures I never saw before! This book is a winner and a must for every Beatles fan.
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By A Customer on October 21, 2003
Format: Hardcover
This book is fabulous! You really feel like you are there, back in the 1960s, part of the magic that was Beatlemania!
This is a different book than the original! first quality and great new pictures!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Much quicker delivery than anticipated.Book arrived in very good condition! High quality book.Love the Beatles! I was familiar with many of the pictures already.Many were new to me also.
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By A Customer on July 12, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Freeman really doesn;t have a lot to say about either the Beatles or the photos he took of them...no professional insights on photography and no intriguing thoughts on the Beatles in the context of the British pop culture scene in the 1960's. Photos are nothing new beyond the album covers, nothing we haven't scene in Hoffman's, Gunther's, Benson's and even Beatle Biographies from Davies, Schaffner and Norman, etc.
Don't waste your money - by Hoffman's or Lewisohn's chronicles book if you want nice photos, and more insightful text.
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