THE PETE BEST BAND Hayman’s Green (2008)

Hayman’s Green (2008)
Ready For An Eye-Opener?

Pete Best was just two weeks away from becoming one of the world’s most famous people when he was fired from The Beatles’ drum chair in 1962. Most only know him as the guy who had the audacity to release an album entitled Best Of The Beatles, a brilliant idea that did little for his career except brand him as a coat-tailer. It’s a label that’s followed him well into the 21st Century, as he’s released dubious albums defined by old Beatles photos and Beatles cover songs. Now, Best is back with an album that just may help to salvage his savaged reputation. Surrounding himself with some talented singers and tunesmiths, The Pete Best Band’s latest is a bright, pleasing pop album that draws its inspiration from familiar fab knockoffs like The Rutles and “Free As A Bird.” And, it’s not bad. Make no mistake… there’s nothing here that hasn’t been done better before. But for Pete Best, this is a shining moment, even as suspicions linger about his overall involvement. Best, 67 at the time of recording, doesn’t sing (never did), is credited with co-writing all the material (something he’s never done before) and Pete’s brother Roag is on board as co-drummer. Fanatics will note that the cover art features a ripped pic of Pete taken when he was a Beatle. The exact same image that was ripped out of The Beatles Anthology 1 cover – from which, it’s reported, Pete profited handsomely (from 1 to 4 million pounds, if you trust Wiki). Good for him. While many can’t see past Pete’s efforts to profit from his association, I’m personally happy for the guy. It can’t be easy being recognized as “the unluckiest man in the world” for close to 50 years. Amazon.


Come With Me (2:24)
Step Outside (3:58)
Round And Round (2:38)
Grey River (3:19)
Gone (2:34)
Dream Me Home (3:47)
Everything I Want (3:38)
Beat Street (2:06)
Broken (3:57)
Red Light (4:01)
Hayman’s Green (3:05)

15 Comments

  • 1
    mocho
    September 23, 2009 - 23:50 | Permalink

    the BEST beatle album in the last
    ten , twenty? years .
    Hayman green (the song ) is a great
    tune ,and the rest is a good surprise .

    mocho

  • 2
    Dave
    September 24, 2009 - 21:13 | Permalink

    I heard this a few months ago and was very impressed. One of the best solo Beatles albums other than George's 'All Things Must Pass'. Just IMO – I love the Beatles but don't care too much for most of their solo material.

    On another note I vaguely remember seeing Pete on an episode of 'To Tell the Truth' when I was a very young kid and hardly even knew who the Beatles were. If not familiar with the show, a mystery guest was asked various questions by a panel until they could guess who he was. It might possibly be on Youtube but I didn't bother searching.

  • 3
    Capt. Willard
    September 24, 2009 - 21:26 | Permalink

    Thanks for the reminder, Dave, I'll pop it in the post. Actually, it was I've Got A Secret. Because of the "England" connection (in 1964) even the old fogies nailed him pretty quickly. You can also hear Pete lay a little BS on everybody about why he left.

  • 4
    Art Ducko
    September 25, 2009 - 04:28 | Permalink

    Yes, a pleasant surprise. Little Steven's Underground Garage has been featuring "Come With Me" quite regularly this past year, & so I've been very curious about the album as a whole. Not as cringe-worthy as it could've been. It would be interesting to see what kind of response this would have received without Pete's name being attached to it. I'm still glad they picked Ringo, though.

  • 5
    Capt. Willard
    September 25, 2009 - 04:55 | Permalink

    Ringo's the best, and I think this album is better than just not being cringe-worthy. That being said… you raise a great question about how this would have been viewed if this were made by, say, The Poppy Popsters Of Pop. Personally speaking, the album seems to hit all the right notes but, for me, lacks an actual passion for the genre. It's well done, but curiously detached to these ears. It sounds like (whoever the band is) they're wearing a pop suit, instead of living the pop life. The music sounds young, but lacks that reckless discovery that the best young popsters have to rise above the level of mediocrity. Which is kind of how I view this album – pleasant and fun, but sort of average. But then… I thought the same thing about The Beatles' "Free As A Bird." So what do I know? But COMPARED to other albums with Pete Best's name on it, this is like his Sgt. Peppers.

  • 6
    Art Ducko
    September 25, 2009 - 05:26 | Permalink

    A few million quid can buy a pretty competent band that'll play whatever you tell them to. I hope that's not the case, because I actually like some of the tunes. I hope Pete had his hand in a few of the songs & I think he did (the title track sounds pretty biographical). And you're right, it's no better or worse than some of the solo Fab's latter output.

  • 7
    Capt. Willard
    September 25, 2009 - 05:33 | Permalink

    Yeah, you're right about some of the lyrics, which I failed to address. I hope Pete was actively involved too, despite my unwarranted cynicism. Maybe the money just bought him some breathing room (and time in a decent studio, for a change) to do what he wanted to do all along.

  • 8
    Capt. Willard
    November 11, 2009 - 01:49 | Permalink

    .
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    Search HERE
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    .

  • 9
    ge
    March 8, 2010 - 00:50 | Permalink

    am riking rots

  • 10
    Anonymous
    April 29, 2011 - 21:15 | Permalink

    Thanks for the Pete Best share, I think this albums drops into the curiosity box as it has a couple of good songs but nothing that will get your ears pricked.

    Regards

    Rhod

  • 11
    Ace K.
    October 30, 2011 - 11:36 | Permalink

    As noted, this is surprisingly good. If you are at all intrigued, check it out.

    Ace

  • 12
    fabgear5
    October 30, 2011 - 15:35 | Permalink

    I’ve never given Pete Best hardly a thought. The Beatles were the Beatles. However, I’m liking this cd.
    Thanks for all the great music here!!

  • 13
    Colin H
    October 30, 2011 - 19:50 | Permalink

    apparently, Roag Best often conducts the tour you can book of the Casbah Club (the family still own the their Mom’s house that it was in the basement of) in Liverpool, and I hope to go back there next Feb, so maybe I can talk to him about this disc a bit. My armourer at the local guitar shop loaned me a copy when it came out and i quite liked it… though I so seldom deliberately choose specifically what i listen to on a given day in the iPod era that I just hear tunes come round on occasion, so I can;t say I’ve ever got super-familiar. One did come up the day before you posted this, though, which counts as a weird coincedence when there’s 25,000 tunes on there. It reminds me a little of the RIngo album from the 90’s where guys from Jellyfish did alot of the backing vocals and some co-writing, in a way…

    Colin H, Cambridge, Canada

  • 14
    Colin H
    October 30, 2011 - 19:53 | Permalink

    He toured alot in support of this album, too. From what I gather from my friend at the music store, who met him, the Antholgy money kind of gave him the chance to retire and put a band with his brother and some of his boys together and hit the road on a world tour for fun

    • 15
      Willard
      October 30, 2011 - 20:12 | Permalink

      Thanks Colin. I haven’t read one word about this disc or what Best is up to these days.

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