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"Cry For A Shadow"

 (by George Harrison & John Lennon,
June 22nd, 1961)

It is no exaggeration to say that "Cry For A Shadow" came to light like an instrumental rough diamond, at least those were the words of David Fricke and Bert Kaempfert, who said: "I knew that the guys were talented enormously, but nobody - neither the boys themselves - took advantage of this talent, or knew what result  would came from it".

("Cry For A Shadow" live, at YouTube)

Bert Kaempfert, hit producer and bandleader in the early sixties, who ordered the Beat Brothers from Liverpool with Tony Sheridan in Hamburg on 22./23./24th of June 1961 to the studio Rahlstedt to record "Cry For A Shadow", "Ain't She Sweet" and "My Bonnie", saw the boys for the first time at the "TopTen", where they performed on stage with Tony Sheridan and put on an incredible show.

Too bad Kaempfert and the Polydor bosses did not recognize the potential, because the Beat Brothers changed into the Beatles, and Tony Sheridan into a Hamburg blues rock icon, which performs music lively to date.

"Cry For A Shadow" was almost single-handedly written by the 18-year old George, and being recorded at the aforementioned professional recording session in Hamburg, virtually recorded alongside. For unknown reasons George and John left the copyright for "Cry For A Shadow" on Jun 28th, 1961 to the music publisher Alfred "Al" Schacht for free. David Fricke reminds us in conversation that "Cry For A Shadow" was the first genuine Beatles song released on record, and yet 6 months before the release of "Love Me Do," the first Beatles hit in England in October 1962.

"Cry For A Shadow" was originally called "Beatle Bop" and fairly sounded like the Shadows, with a melody virtually consisting of a single note, chopped to staccato and pulled down howlingly. Accentuated by John Lennon's rhythm guitar (which is why he was allowed to call himselve co-author), and by the screams of McCartney, the song demonstrated George Harrison's playful passion and precision in full bloom!

In addition to "Cry For A Shadow", "Sheik of Arabia" (which are both released on the Beatles Anthology), probably the other uncut rough diamond which Harrison performed in these  Hamburg days at the Star Club and Top Ten, this song also gives a hint of what could be expected from George Harrison!

("Sheik Of Araby" bei YouTube)

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