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Mystery of the Quarrymen and Buddy

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Last post 16/09/2020

Posted by Nancy R

      Original post

      In Mark Lewisohn's brilliant, exhaustive (and exhausting) Beatles biography, he tells the story of how John, Paul and George inexplicably passed up the opportunity to see one of their heroes, Buddy Holly, play with the Crickets at the Philharmonic Hall in Liverpool. The tickets were reasonably priced, and neither performance was anywhere near sold out. Instead they went to an illegal skiffle club. This was despite the fact that they'd seen Buddy on TV from the London Palladium a few months earlier, and drooled over his Fender Stratocaster. This seems incredible - does anyone know the real reason for this ?

        It probably involved 3 birds, and I don't mean the kind that fly in the sky! ūüėā

          dirkmcquickly wrote:

          In Mark Lewisohn's brilliant, exhaustive (and exhausting) Beatles biography, he tells the story of how John, Paul and George inexplicably passed up the opportunity to see one of their heroes, Buddy Holly, play with the Crickets at the Philharmonic Hall in Liverpool.

          That was very odd. They were such big fans and were literally only a few hundreds yards away from where Buddy was rehearsing when they left school / art college that afternoon. Nancy is probably on the right track and that they were meeting some one (or persons) at the Morgue that evening, who was/were more important than Buddy was. I can't see it being girlfriends though. Its certainly a mystery that perhaps only Paul could now answer. 

            I would have thought that Mark Lewisohn should have/would have addressed this.

              oobu24 wrote:

              I would have thought that Mark Lewisohn should have/would have addressed this.

              Unfortunately Mark doesn't have connections with Paul any more, I don't think. He used to, but maybe it just didn't occur to him to ask Paul why they didn't go see Buddy Holly. 

              From Wikipedia:

              As well as writing his own books, Lewisohn has written forewords to such books as¬†Recording The Beatles¬†by¬†Brian Kehew¬†and Kevin Ryan,¬†Beatles Gear¬†by Andy Babiuk and the German book¬†Komm, gib mir deine Hand¬†by Thorsten Knublauch and Axel Korinth. He has also contributed to¬†In My Life: Lennon Remembered, a book to accompany the 10-part¬†BBC¬†radio series about John Lennon, and edited McCartney's book¬†Wingspan, after working for a long time as editor and writer for McCartney's (now ceased) fanzine¬†Club Sandwich. This led to him being invited by the former Beatle to write the¬†liner notes¬†for several of his albums, namely¬†Flaming Pie,¬†Band on the Run: 25th Anniversary Edition¬†and¬†Wingspan: Hits and History. He also wrote the liner notes for the retrospective six-CD box set¬†Produced by George Martin ‚Äď 50 Years in Recording, and the Beatles' albums¬†1¬†and¬†The Capitol Albums, Volume 1. He was heavily involved in¬†The Beatles Anthology¬†project.[6][dead link]

                Thanks for the history lesson of Mark. But IMO he should have delved into that subject more.

                  oobu24 wrote:

                  Thanks for the history lesson of Mark. But IMO he should have delved into that subject more.

                  I agree. When I see him in Liverpool next year I'll ask him. Last year, at the Fest for Beatles Fans in Chicago (Aug. 2019) that Leslie and I attended, I asked him (privately) if he had interviewed Jane Asher for his biography. He said she wouldn't agree to an interview. (Understandable) 

                    Kestrel wrote:

                    dirkmcquickly wrote:

                    In Mark Lewisohn's brilliant, exhaustive (and exhausting) Beatles biography, he tells the story of how John, Paul and George inexplicably passed up the opportunity to see one of their heroes, Buddy Holly, play with the Crickets at the Philharmonic Hall in Liverpool.

                    That was very odd. They were such big fans and were literally only a few hundreds yards away from where Buddy was rehearsing when they left school / art college that afternoon. Nancy is probably on the right track and that they were meeting some one (or persons) at the Morgue that evening, who was/were more important than Buddy was. I can't see it being girlfriends though. Its certainly a mystery that perhaps only Paul could now answer. 

                    I didn't mean girlfriends Kestrel - I meant hookups! ūüėā

                      Nancy R wrote:

                      I didn't mean girlfriends Kestrel - I meant hookups! ūüėā

                       I still can't see that as being a valid reason for missing out on seeing Buddy. I doubt Paul would remember now either.  I was recently reading an interview with John, where the interviewer was asking him about the origin of the Beatles haircut. And John replied that it was all a long time ago,and that he couldn't really remember as so much had happened but he thought it was connetced with either Paris or Hamburg but he wasn't sure.  The startling thing is though that this interview took place in New Zealand in 1964, just 3 years after the 'haircut' originated in Paris. And already John had forgotten. I don't fancy Paul's chances of answering questions now about events that happened 62 years ago. 

                      Mark Lewisohn recently mentioned in a podcast that he was politely rebuffed by Jane Asher. I do admire her integrity. however frustrating her stance is. 

                        Kestrel wrote:

                        Nancy R wrote:

                        I didn't mean girlfriends Kestrel - I meant hookups! ūüėā

                         I still can't see that as being a valid reason for missing out on seeing Buddy. I doubt Paul would remember now either.  I was recently reading an interview with John, where the interviewer was asking him about the origin of the Beatles haircut. And John replied that it was all a long time ago,and that he couldn't really remember as so much had happened but he thought it was connetced with either Paris or Hamburg but he wasn't sure.  The startling thing is though that this interview took place in New Zealand in 1964, just 3 years after the 'haircut' originated in Paris. And already John had forgotten. I don't fancy Paul's chances of answering questions now about events that happened 62 years ago. 

                        Mark Lewisohn recently mentioned in a podcast that he was politely rebuffed by Jane Asher. I do admire her integrity. however frustrating her stance is. 

                        I was jk about the girls, but I wanted to clarify what I meant. ūüėā

                        Paul probably wouldn't even remember that Buddy ever played the Philharmonic, let alone why they didn't go! I guess it's true, if you can remember the '60s, you didn't really "live" them! ūüėā

                        Yeah, Jane could make ££££($$$$) if she wrote a tell-all book, but we know she's too classy for that. 

                          Thank you for these fascinating posts - this thread I started may never produce an answer but it's interesting to speculate !  Rather like trying to establish beyond doubt that Shakespeare wrote all those 37 plays. Probably too much water has flowed under the bridge (and booze down the throat) for anyone to remember.

                            I found out some information online. Buddy Holly played Philharmonic Hall in Liverpool on Mar. 20, 1958. Two shows at 6:15 and 8:30. Tickets cost 12, 10, 8, 7, 6 and 4 shillings. (1 shilling = 12 pence back then) 

                            The Quarrymen played live at the Morgue Skiffle Cellar on Mar. 13, 1958, and that was where they were instead of at Buddy's concert on the 20th. Maybe trying to secure another gig? 

                              I agree with oobu that Mark Lewison should have found that out. It sounds like he was certainly thorough and painstaking enough and all that, and meticulous,  to have thought to ask that question. 

                              He found out lots of other things.

                                SusyLuvsPaul wrote:

                                I agree with oobu that Mark Lewison should have found that out. It sounds like he was certainly thorough and painstaking enough and all that, and meticulous,  to have thought to ask that question. 

                                He found out lots of other things.

                                The key word in Mark's book was "inexplicably." Mark has always says he just writes what he knows. (he doesn't speculate) Maybe he did try to find out why they were somewhere else that night, but when he was unable to, he just wrote that they inexplicably passed up the chance to see Buddy. Like I said, if I can get to Liverpool next August, I'll ask him. 

                                  SusyLuvsPaul wrote:

                                  I agree with oobu that Mark Lewison should have found that out. It sounds like he was certainly thorough and painstaking enough and all that, and meticulous,  to have thought to ask that question. 

                                  He found out lots of other things.

                                  Thanks. I agree.

                                   

                                  And by next Aug we probably won't care.

                                    oobu24 wrote:

                                    SusyLuvsPaul wrote:

                                    I agree with oobu that Mark Lewison should have found that out. It sounds like he was certainly thorough and painstaking enough and all that, and meticulous,  to have thought to ask that question. 

                                    He found out lots of other things.

                                    Thanks. I agree.

                                     

                                    And by next Aug we probably won't care.

                                    Gee, thanks. ūüôĄ Who peed in your Cheerios? ūüėā

                                      Nancy R wrote:

                                      oobu24 wrote:
                                      SusyLuvsPaul wrote:

                                      I agree with oobu that Mark Lewison should have found that out. It sounds like he was certainly thorough and painstaking enough and all that, and meticulous,  to have thought to ask that question. 

                                      He found out lots of other things.

                                      Thanks. I agree.

                                      And by next Aug we probably won't care.

                                      Gee, thanks. ūüôĄ Who peed in your Cheerios? ūüėā

                                      What? It is being discussed now & by late next year I would assume we'll all have forgotten about this.

                                        oobu24 wrote:

                                        Nancy R wrote:
                                        oobu24 wrote:
                                        SusyLuvsPaul wrote:

                                        I agree with oobu that Mark Lewison should have found that out. It sounds like he was certainly thorough and painstaking enough and all that, and meticulous,  to have thought to ask that question. 

                                        He found out lots of other things.

                                        Thanks. I agree.

                                        And by next Aug we probably won't care.

                                        Gee, thanks. ūüôĄ Who peed in your Cheerios? ūüėā

                                        What? It is being discussed now & by late next year I would assume we'll all have forgotten about this.

                                        I just thought your response was a tad rude. If you had put Lol after it, I wouldn't have taken it that way. After this, if I do see Mark next August, it will be the only thing I'm thinking about. ūüėā

                                          Nope, you just took it wrong.  It wasn't meant to be rude.

                                            oobu24 wrote:

                                            Nope, you just took it wrong.  It wasn't meant to be rude.

                                            Fair enough.