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The Beatles’ "ahead of their time" Christmas singles uncovered

The Beatles’ "ahead of their time" Christmas singles uncovered

The Beatles’ lost Christmas fan club singles are explored in the new issue of Uncut.

The group’s seasonal releases chart their rise from family-friendly entertainers to psychedelic adventurers, and involve surreal pantos, long-suffering fan club secretaries, unhinged experiments and Kenny Everett.

A host of people who worked on the Christmas singles tell the story, including fan club secretary Freda Kelly, engineer Geoff Emerick and press officer Tony Barrow.

“They were ahead of their time in terms of the comedy they could produce at the drop of a hat,” explains Barrow.

"Paid-up members were gobsmacked to receive a record of The Beatles talking to them. It was important to keep the fan club on side.”

The new issue of Uncut, dated January 2014, is out on Thursday (November 28).

Visit our dedicated features section, with plenty of our best long pieces archived there. You can find it here.

Uncut is now available as a digital edition! Download here on your iPad/iPhone and here on your Kindle Fire or Nook.


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Very taken with Africa Express' version of "In C", by Terry Riley, this week. I have a few takes on the piece (50 years old this month, incidentally), the latest being one by Portishead's Adrian Utley from a couple of years back, though I still probably default to what I think is the original...