So that’s the reason those survive, was because they weren’t in-studio?
Most of them, that’s right.
Did she do a lot of in-studio interviews too? People came in?
Oh yes, yeah. Yeah, she’d set up a weekly diary of what was happening.
Were there any interviews that you did that you ended up not using?
Yes, tape was so bad you just couldn’t.
Just for the quality of the recording?
Yeah, quality would be so bad.
What were you recording on?
On a Uher, a little Uher. But some of the tapes you got were, oh it was just terrible.
So this is the tape stock?
Yeah, tape stock wasn’t good.
And your trip to England, I read that you could only go if you talked to The Beatles?
Oh, what happened was we had a particular manager at AK at that stage, a man called David Joseph, who was very, very hard to get on with, and demanding, a man who had an ambition you wouldn’t believe. He insisted that I get some interviews with The Beatles or you don’t go. So I wouldn’t take that. And I said ‘Oh yeah, alright, I’ll get an interview with The Beatles’. So, over we go, and what we organised was that we chopped it up, because Binny had to have it for XY, and Joseph was insisting I get something for AK. He would dub a voice in, you know. I then went to the BBC after we’d done it, the next day, I set it up with [Alan] Freeman who booked me an engineering room with an engineer. And off I went, with my little tape held tightly, and previously, the night before, I’d done all the edits I wanted, you know, chopped it up fairly well. I got to the BBC and was hushed up to the engineering room, there’s a man in his white coat, he got his yellow chalk and I thought ‘Oh no, this is going to take ages’. And these enormous EMI consoles, you know, reel-to-reel. So there we sat, I said ‘this is where I want my cuts’.
So you weren’t allowed to touch the machine?
No. Oh, no way. But first we had to have the obligatory cup of tea [laughs] And I had to get this on an aircraft as soon as possible! Because Joseph would be jumping up and down and furious. And eventually got it done with a little chalk, split it, splice it, so we had two separate tapes. I eventually got to the post office and said ‘This has got to go ultra, ultra express’, they sent it off and Joseph got it, he rang me next day and said ‘Where is it, where is it?’. I said ‘I sent it last night, David’. So eventually it got there and they put a voice in with it.
They had different content in the recordings did they, when you chopped it up?
Yeah, I just chopped it up, different things. She had that lot and I had this lot. But eventually it all came together in the full thing.
Did they know about the other recording?
They did eventually.
Were they happy?
No! [laughs] But I didn’t care!
So, you must have had some idea of their popularity before you went over?
Oh yeah. I was getting reports from London, about this group, The Beatles, from [Alan] Freeman. He was writing over, and we used to get notes from him, saying ‘There’s a new group coming up – The Beatles’. ‘Oh, okay.’ That was the start of it, really.
And it wasn’t really Binny’s taste in music?
No, she’d never heard of them! And I said ‘Catch up, because you’re about to!’ And she absolutely loved them, and they loved her, as you can hear on the tape. And the way she set it up, knowing that I had to cut it up and edit it, she let them try and speak more, that’s why John’s saying at some stage ‘Ask us a question!’ or Ringo or someone. That was deliberate because we were trying to clean it, keep her voice out of it. I just had to twig and say ‘Just try to get it all out of them, doesn’t matter what they say, you know, just hold your finger up or whatever, anything!’
Did you have any recollections about Brian Epstein?
He was a man that was very quiet, very reticent. He didn’t want to do anything, an interview, he said ‘Oh no, you don’t want me’ and Bin insisted. He eventually did, and he was quite pleasant then, said what he had to say, he said ‘We’ll probably see you in Australia’ – which he did. He came in first, after we eventually got through the foyer, the girls screaming and phones ringing and telegraphists in tears, we got into this small little anteroom … and Epstein came out of his office and said ‘Oh hello, I’ve got the boys here, better come in’ but Paul at that stage had said ‘Look, I’ve gotta go, I’ve got an appointment’. He apologised, and that was it. Oh, it was frantic.