Published On: Mon, Oct 12th, 2020

The Beatles: When did the Beatles get a record deal? ‘TWICE rejected’ | Music | Entertainment


The Beatles set in motion a major change in the music world when fans became utterly obsessed with the group. Beatlemania really did take over the world, making it seem shocking the group was not signed straight away. In fact, they were rejected more than once, as was revealed in an exclusive interview with Express.co.uk.

According to Paul Endacott, the head of Music Heritage London, George Harrison helped The Rolling Stones get signed by Decca, despite them having their own difficult time with the record label.

In fact, in what Paul called a “little known story,” he revealed The Beatles had tried a number of times to get signed, even to the extent they were turned down by EMI, the label which eventually signed them.

Paul revealed The Beatles manager Brian Epstein tried with EMI and Decca Records to sign his band, but they were turned down until he tried once more with EMI.

Paul said: “That was the second time they [The Beatles] approached EMI; the first time EMI also turned them down. That’s a little known story.

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“But Brian Epstein knocked on EMI again and then he had got them the contract.”

Clearly, the efforts of its management helped The Beatles find its place in the music scene, which they were able to pass on to their friends The Rolling Stones.

Though Paul said they were twice turned down by EMI, they were turned down many times by other labels, as Brian did a lot of work to try and get them a contract.

In 1961, after Brian had signed The Beatles to a management contract under his new business NEMS Enterprises, he visited various labels to get them a record deal.

These included Columbia, Pye, Oriole and Philips, though Decca was the audition which is best known because it was a particularly difficult time for the group.

At the Decca audition, The Beatles arrived at the studios in West Hampstead on January 1, 1962.

At this audition, which would usually consist of a band singing a small number of songs before leaving, The Beatles performed a huge setlist of 15 songs, which were recorded by a producer.

A short while later, the band was rejected, with reports suggesting the reason was a belief guitar-led bands were soon to be out of the music scene.

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This was clearly untrue as the band did incredibly well, and was eventually signed by Parlophone, which is part of EMI.

Brian took the Decca recordings to EMI producer George Martin, who decided to listen to The Beatles and record them himself in 1962, which ultimately led to new drummer Sir Ringo Starr joining.

However, ultimately The Beatles got the last laugh, as Paul explained, when George was able to remind Decca’s Dick Rowe of what they lost.

Paul said: “George Harrison was up in Liverpool as a judge on a talent show. Sitting next to him was a guy called Dick Rowe, who worked for Decca Records.

“And that was the same Dick Rowe that had turned down The Beatles a couple of months before and The Beatles then went to EMI Records…

“George Harrison was sitting next to Dick Rowe up in Liverpool soon after he had seen The Stones for the first time.

“And he said to Dick, ‘You have got to get yourself down to Richmond, because you missed out on The Beatles. You don’t want to miss out on this band.’

“And literally… when Dick Rowe was talking about that event up in Liverpool, he said, ‘I pushed my chair back and I basically ran to my car and got myself down to Richmond to make sure I was there for that Rolling Stones gig.”

This act helped secure The Rolling Stones’ future, ultimately leading to a huge British invasion of the global music scene.



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