Welcome to the Quarrymen’s Official Website
FOR THE RECORD…
Over the years, lots of myths and errors about the group and its members have landed in print. And then many of those errors and myths have been copied in other books and media coverage of the Quarrymen - giving the false impression that the information is accurate simply because it has appeared in more than one place. Ignoring the fact that the multiple appearances in print are actually the result of the original error being copied and repeated. Add in the “mirror” and “echo chamber” qualities of the internet that result in content being copied ad infinitum - and you arrive at a place where mistakes are enshrined as gospel simply because “it’s in lots of books” or “it’s on a website”.
Who kept detailed notes in those days?!
It’s also the case that in the first Quarrymen era (1956-1960) none of us who played in the group (except perhaps John, Paul and George) had any inkling or belief that our group was going to amount to much. We were playing music just for fun. The thought that anyone in the future might be interested in mundane information such as group lineups, venues and dates played, would have been preposterous. So none of us were taking detailed notes. The significance of the Quarrymen didn’t remotely start to dawn on people until the Beatles started to become successful in 1963. Even then, the chances that anyone 50 years in the future would be interested in the fledgling activities of a pop group was just not imaginable. So even then, no one was carefully reconstructing the Quarrymen’s history.
A word or two about the human memory
As years went by, various biographers and historians have attempted to undertake such a reconstruction But inevitably time takes its toll on human memories. John, Paul and George underscored this point with their own recollections when being interviewed about their early days. Just a few years after the Quarrymen’s formation – and without the benefit of diaries or such modern resources as the internet to jog their memories – all three had recollections that we now know were mistaken. For example John told many interviewers that his first encounter with Paul had taken place in June 1956 though evidence later proved incontrovertibly that they first met on Saturday 6th July 1957. But his first, incorrect recollection was enshrined in the authorized biography “The Beatles” by Hunter Davies – published in 1968. And that erroneous date stayed uncorrected for many years until hard evidence revealed the error.
All of us members of the Quarrymen have contributed to the confusion at one time or other. Two members have written books. In 1983, Pete Shotton published “John Lennon In My Life” (1983) – later re-titled “The Beatles, Lennon and Me”. In 1997, Len Garry published “John, Paul and Me: Before The Beatles.” (Those two books were written primarily relying on personal memories and without the benefit of researchers to corroborate facts, dates and spellings.) And we were all interviewed for an authorized Quarrymen biography by the same Hunter Davies who had written the Beatles 1968 biography. While all these books are highly commendable and are enjoyable reads that convey the spirit of our past, inevitably some factual errors crept in.
Fortunately many facts in our story have been uncovered and proven in recent years. There has been detective work by dedicated historians who have discovered documentation that definitively answers some of the riddles and untangles the contradictory claims. We Quarrymen have all searched through our personal archives of diaries, memorabilia, official papers etc and have contributed to correcting the record.
So this is one website that you CAN trust in respect of information about The Quarrymen. That’s because we ARE the Quarrymen!
This section aims to correct errors and bust myths. Once and for all. Definitively. From the people who should know! We were there - and we really DO know!