And In The End: The Last Days Of The Beatles
by Ken McNab
From the author of The Beatles In Scotland, Ken McNab, comes his riveting, eye-opening and factual account of the last 12 months the world’s most beloved band while they were still an intact and cohesive music-making machine. And In The End offers over 30+ eyewitness accounts of the events of 1969 chronologically that allows the reader the opportunity to be a fly on the wall of the self-implosion of The Beatles.
McNab recounts the quagmire of hostilities that were present from the very start of 1969 as The Beatles stepped into the recording studio for their next album – no one knowing that it would be the last time The Fab Four would ever be together in a recording studio. He tells us the attitude of each member of the band and the feelings each had for one another. These were not the same days as when they were best friends and hanging out at The Cavern Club. There was jealousy-filled screaming and threatening arguments right from the outset and these arguments were not just limited to writing and recording. Apple Corps was teetering on the edge of bankruptcy as the entire establishment had not had a true business manager since the death of Brian Epstein in August of 1967. The only makeshift management in place at the beginning of 1969 was Peter Brown, who was merely Epstein’s personal assistant. Brown had no experience or education to be acting as in such a role for a band of the magnitude as The Beatles. When it was learned by the band that Apple was in such financial shambles it was apparent to them all that a true business manager was urgently needed. Even in the seriousness of the potential loss of Apple, the band locked horns once again. There was an explosive divide over which person would fill Brian Epstein’s shoes. Meeting after meeting there were altercations that would, at points, nearly turn into boxing matches. By the end of the year, The Beatles will discover that the choice of American Allen Klein (against McCartney’s wishes) would be a disastrous mistake.
And In The End gives a glimpse into each of The Beatles personal and private lives. John Lennon and Yoko Ono’s “bed-ins” in protest against the Vietnam War from whence came the Lennon song, “Give Peace A Chance” is detailed, as well as Ringo Starr’s work with Peter Sellers on the film The Magic Christian. Russ Gibb, a Detroit disc jockey, tells of how the “Paul is dead!” rumor was started and how close it came to sending McCartney into a nervous breakdown. Lastly, McNab tells us of George Harrison’s drifting into Hinduism, his working closely with Bob Dylan and Eric Clapton, and how he was beginning to grow in his own music-writing abilities.
This is just a tiny amount of information McNab covers in And In The End. McNab goes to great lengths to make sure the ground is covered in relating each incident in the last year of the greatest rock band. It can be complicated at times as it involves a large amount of data involving investments and publishing rights which can be a headache even for a seasoned person dealing in those business areas. Nonetheless, it is something every Beatles fan should take the time to read, as there is a lot of unknown information concerning the band’s last year together and truly does help in understanding the breakup of The Beatles.