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Anxiously awaiting Mark Lewisohn's Beatles biography
by Bruce Spizer
The reason I and many other Beatles fans are looking forward to Mark Lewisohn's three book treatment on the Beatles is because we know that Mark will not only do extensive research, but will also make judgments on what he uncovers. Mark has the same research and writing philosophy as I do. Neither of us will print a story merely because we were told something by "someone who was there." We both know that memories fade, people get confused, people embellish, people have agendas, people over emphasize their role, and, yes, people outright lie. We only go with stories that are backed up by documents and/or appear to be logical. We view Beatles history as a puzzle and we look for as many of the missing pieces as we can find. We then try to pull it all together by putting each of the pieces in the right place.
I have assisted Mark with a small portion of the American research and I can assure you that his books will have significant new information. He is not just interviewing the usual suspects. He is tracking down people who have yet to tell their story. The importance of some people will be elevated. The importance of others will be rightly reduced. No matter how much you think you know about the Beatles, you will learn new things from his books.
Some people have questioned Mark's writing ability because he has only written information type books about concert appearances and recording sessions. One author went so far as to label Mark as "an accountant." This is totally unfair because Mark has not only written high quality books on the Beatles, but also a book on British comedy. He has earned the designation "author/historian." To label Mark as "an accountant" is the same as describing me as "a tax attorney." While Mark's books may or may not be a breezy narrative like "Shout," at least I know that when I read his books, I will be reading an accurate account. I am willing to sacrifice a little bit of writing style for the truth. Also, it is unfair for people to prejudge Mark's writing style before his first book in the series has even been finished, much less published.
Beatles fans will dissect Mark's books, but not to find fault. They will be looking for new information and they will find it. I am looking forward to reading his draft manuscript because I know I will learn many new things about the Beatles. Trust me on this one.
Bruce Spizer is a Tax Attorney and Beatles author/historian who has published six critically acclaimed books on the Beatles.
Published February 9, 2006
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