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Saturday 04 December 2021

Interview: Getting Back To Brighton With The Bootleg Beatles Paul McCartney

The Beatles famously turned their back on touring towards the end of their career but The Bootleg Beatles, due to Covid, as with the rest of the industry were forced into an unwanted hiatus. 

For a band that exists to perform live, and has toured the world constantly since their inception over 40 years ago, the unwanted hiatus was a bitter pill to swallow.

For Steve White, who plays Paul McCartney in the show and will next year celebrate a decade as a Bootleg Beatle, the Lockdown period meant lots of time to practice.  

It also gave him time to think about the importance of live music – and of course those incredible songs and the show to fans all over the world.  

When even the late Sir George Martin himself described the Bootleg Beatles experience as, "A terrific show," you know you are doing something right.

Steve said: 

"The impact of lockdown as a working live musician was pretty devastating. Unlike most other industries, the entertainment industry had one long lockdown from the very beginning. 

"Many entertainers were forced into retraining or alternate job roles (myself included) to make ends meet."

"It's very interesting how live music affects people on many different levels, evoking memories, thoughts and reflections, so to not have that was a huge loss, it made people realise how much they missed live music and how much live musicians like us missed the fans. 

"Being able to play the music of The Beatles is an incredible gift, but to see the joy on people"s faces as you do is priceless.  

"We spent much of the time using the internet as a means of entertaining our / Beatles fans, and there was a lot of time to rehearse new material for up and coming shows.  

"This in itself was a great experience because it allows you to absorb what an incredible back catalogue of music The Beatles left us with!"

For a musician whose dedication to the role led him to relearn playing the bass using his left hand, as McCartney did, getting the Bootleg Beatles show back on the road has been a delight.  

"To finally be back touring again is such a joy, firstly it"s great to be back doing what we do, but there's no words to describe the atmosphere of being on stage performing to an audience that have the same love of the music. What a privilege!"

Whilst the Bootleg Beatles show will always feature all the songs that the fans know, love and demand, the band always try to keep their performances fresh and topical.  

The shows in this December run will include all the hits and more, but also feature a special set dedicated to Let It Be, celebrating  the long awaited release of the critically acclaimed Peter Jackson Beatles documentary The Beatles: Get Back. 

The set will include a authentic re-enactment of The Beatles famous 1969 rooftop concert, plus the iconic anthem The Long And Winding Road and the album's title track Let It Be.

As Steve says: 

"With the new Peter Jackson documentary 'Get Back imminent, it was obvious that we had to pay homage to the 'Let It Be' period. 

"There's no getting away from the fact that this was The Beatles' last ever live performance atop the Apple Building at Savile Row in London. 

"Who was to know that this public performance from the most famous band in the world on that cold February morning would be their last?  

"This show marked the end of an era and is etched into the minds of Beatles fans the world over.  

"Our aim this year is to recreate that last performance, along with some of the other hits from the 'Let It Be' album." 

So, this December, don't miss Steve White and the rest of the band as they 'Get Back' to doing what they and the audiences love. 

The Bootleg Beatles play the Brighton Centre on Sunday 19th December 2021. CLICK HERE for tickets.

by: Mike Cobley


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