The Bootleg Beatles
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|The Bootleg Beatles|
The Bootleg Beatles performing for Dutch television in 1981
|Past members||David Catlin-Birch
Jack Lee Elgood
The band's first performance was at a small student gathering in Tiverton, Devon, England. Following more low-profile gigs, the band performed a 60-date tour of the Soviet Union; further tours followed in Israel, the Far East, the Middle East and India. In February 1984, they were invited to perform in the United States, to commemorate The Beatles' initial US tour 20 years earlier.
UK success continued to prove elusive. In 1990 the Bootleg Beatles booked 10 shows in cities in which The Beatles had performed in their final UK tour in 1965. Audiences were small but enthusiastic, and another tour was booked for the following year. This proved more popular, and as each year went by so crowds grew, the tours expanded, and the venues got larger. Finally, a gig in Southampton caught the attention of Oasis, leading to the Bootleg Beatles supporting the Britpop band at Earls Court. This gave the band a contemporary audience and increased their credibility, launching them onto the premier European festival circuit and shared stages with Rod Stewart, Bon Jovi, David Bowie, The Corrs, Manic Street Preachers and Iggy Pop.
On 30 January 1999, the band played on the rooftop of 3 Savile Row, London, former residence of the Beatles' Apple Corps company, recreating the Beatles final public live performance which took place on the same rooftop 30 years earlier. In 2009 the band hoped to mark the 40th anniversary by recreating the performance again, but unfortunately health & safety concerns prevented the appearance.
2010 sees the band headline the Acoustic Stage at Glastonbury Festival, drawing the biggest crowd for 5 years. They also made a number of appearances on BBC TV, including The One & Only, The One Show and I'm In a Rock'n'Roll Band.
In March 2011, Neil Harrison announced that he was leaving the group. On 18 July, a press release announced his replacement as Adam Hastings, a musician from Newcastle upon Tyne. It was announced in September 2012 that longtime member David Catlin-Birch was leaving the group.
It was announced that they would perform on the acoustic stage at the 2013 Glastonbury Festival.
Typically, each gig consists of performances of songs from five eras. For the 2005 Christmas tour, these were:
- Part One: The Fab Four (1963–1965): "Beatlemania conquers the world"
- Part Two: Revolver (1966): "The end of touring and recording; two songs for Liverpool"
- Part Three: Sgt Pepper (1967): "The psychedelic explosion"
- Part Four: All You Need Is Love (1967): "Magical mystery touring and a Yellow Submarine"
- Part Five: Let It Be (1968–1969): "Apple, Abbey Road and the rooftop finale"
During each act, the band are dressed in appropriate costumes. The duration of this production is approximately 2h15m.
- NME. "Bootleg Beatles defy rooftop gig ban". Retrieved 31 January 2009.
- The Bootleg Beatles. "The Bootleg Beatles Announce Their New JOHN LENNON". Bootleg Beatles. Retrieved 25 September 2011.
- The Bootleg Beatles. "David Quits". Retrieved 20 September 2012.
- The Bootleg Beatles Yearly Book 2004-2005