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Beatles Interviews Database: Beatles Press Conference: San Diego, California 8/28/1965
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One likely reason that the Beatles always seemed to look forward to the California leg of their North American tours is that they often had time off to relax in the sun, and also to meet stars that they had idolized. On this tour, they had five days off in North Hollywood. It was during this time that The Beatles traveled to Mulholland Drive to meet Elvis Presley, whose early recordings had inspired them. Beatles author Mark Lewisohn pinpoints their meeting with Presley as occuring in the late hours of August 27th.

The next evening they performed at Balboa Stadium in San Diego, and gave the following press conference just before their concert.

                                          - Jay Spangler,

Q: "What advice do you have for teenagers?"

JOHN: "Don't get pimples."

PAUL: "That's it."

RINGO: "Don't get them."

M.C: "Yes. Your question?"

Q: "What was your reaction to Jakarta's..."

M.C: "Can we have quiet please? We can't hear the questions."

Q: "What was your reaction to Jakarta's banning of anything about The Beatles?"

JOHN: "In Indonesia, you mean?"

RINGO: "Yeah, Jakarta."

M.C: "What about the banning of The Beatles in Indonesia?"

JOHN: "Well, I mean... it's just stupid, you know."

GEORGE: "We were bitterly disappointed."

PAUL: "He should have just sent them back to us instead of burning them, and we would have flogged them half-price."

RINGO: "It's foolish, you know."

GEORGE: "The thing is, he must have bought them to have burned them, so we'll still get the royalties."

PAUL: "Yeah, that's right."

Q: "If one of The Beatles decided to retire, would you continue?"


Q: "What do you think of the charge that all this Beatle-type music is a big communist plot to downgrade and morally degrade American youth?"

PAUL: "Apparently that isn't the... that's got exaggerated, that. It started off with a pamphlet, apparently, which was comparing communism and capitalism and... no, no... Communism, hypnotism, and us. Everybody else thought it meant that we were communists. But we're just filthy capitalists, you know, like anyone else."

Q: "You don't think that you're hurting the musical standards of American youth at all?"

PAUL: "I don't think so, you know."

RINGO: "No."

JOHN: "We're playing American music."

PAUL: "I mean, if they want Tchaikovsky they can have it, you know. It's there for them to get, isn't it? Right?? Right!"

Q: "What do you think of other groups that imitate you?"

JOHN: "We don't mind being imitated. Not many of them really imitate us, anyway. No more than we imitate other people."

RINGO: "It's good, you know."

Q: "What did you see of San Diego on the way in?"

GEORGE: "We saw the freeway."

PAUL: "That's all."

JOHN: "The curtains were open. We saw the sea."

PAUL: "Yeah."

GEORGE: "We saw lots of things."

PAUL: "Disneyland. Oh no, that was Los Angeles."

Q: "Have you enjoyed your US tour so far?"

JOHN: "Yeah, it's been good, 'cuz it's just long enough for us not to get too tired and fed up, you know. It's just the right length."

Q: "What's the first thing you do when you get to each town?"

GEORGE: "We usually scrub our teeth, comb our hair, and have a cup of tea. Every day, each place, you know, we always do it."

PAUL: "After every meal."

Q: "I see you smoke quite a bit. Does this affect your throat at all?"

PAUL: "Probably."

GEORGE: "Just your lungs."

RINGO: "No, I don't sing that much."

Q: "Are you saving the money?"

JOHN: "Well, we haven't had much chance to spend much of it, really."

GEORGE: "I've spent all my money on cigarettes."

Q: "John, is it too early to start planning for another trip back? Are you going to come back at all?"

M.C: "Talking about the next trip to America."

JOHN: "Well, we don't plan it. Brian will probably be, already, while he's over here. He starts working on the next tour, anyway."

RINGO: "Ask our manager."

JOHN: "That's the manager, Brian Epstein."

Q: "What about your cold? They said on the radio... I heard that you had another cold like you came down with last trip."

JOHN: "No, I didn't have a cold, I just lost me voice."

Q: "It's okay now?"

JOHN: "Yeah, it seems okay. I'll find out later."

Q: "Ringo, I'd like to know if your 'Act Naturally,' the country music sound that it has, is this something new for the Beatles?"

RINGO: "No, it's not new for us. The last couple of tracks I've recorded have been sort-of country-type music, you know."

GEORGE: "We've done about six songs all together-- Country and Western."

Q: "John, are you planning to write another book?"

JOHN: "Yes... no I haven't even thought about it yet, but I'm planning to."

Q: "How about the American way of life for a change?"

JOHN: "For a change? From what?"

Q: "From the British way of life."

JOHN: "Well, our life's different from an average life anyway, so it doesn't make much difference where we are."

Q: "What do The Beatles think of 'The Man From U.N.C.L.E.'?"

JOHN: "Good, yeah."

PAUL: "Yeah... love that program, you know."

Q: "What do you think of surfing, and would you like to try it?"

JOHN: "It looks a bit dangerous to me."

RINGO: "What?"

JOHN: "Surfing."

RINGO: "Oh, I don't want to try it. I can't swim."

JOHN: "It takes years to get good, you know, and we haven't got time, anyway."

PAUL: "We've all got our little skaterboards for the hotel rooms. It's great."

Q: "Any of you... Why is it only at your concerts that you have press conferences, do you have press conferences other than just before your concert, and why don't you let the press have more freedom?"

GEORGE: "We do a concert almost every day, so there's a press conference every day, you see."

JOHN: "It gives you something to write about it. I mean, if we're not doing anything, there's no point in seeing the press, because there's nothing to..."

Q: "You're in the public eye."

PAUL: "I mean, unless we let the press in every morning..."

GEORGE: "Well, not if we don't let the press in. We get out of the public eye for two days."

PAUL: "The thing is, what are they gonna write about, you know... 'I had two lumps of sugar in me tea this morning,' you know. That's all they're gonna have to write about."

JOHN: "We probably see more press than most people put together, anyway."

PAUL: "'I got up and read the paper.' Whoopee, you know. So what?"

JOHN: "It doesn't matter. We see them other times besides conferences. When something's doing."

RINGO: "They don't even want to see us when we're not working, you know."

JOHN: "When I'm at home, nobody keeps ringing up, saying 'Can we come and see you?'"

GEORGE: "We'll give you our personal number, and you can contact us any time of the day. And then you'll be... you'll be all right."

RINGO: "I won't give you mine."

Q: "Some of the fan magazines are claiming to have the story of your life."

JOHN: "Well, originally we wanted to sue."

PAUL: "The fan magazines write things."

JOHN: "...just lies and that.

M.C: "What do you think about the inaccurate reports in fan magazines in America? What do you think about this?"

JOHN: "We used to be upset, but we were told there's nothing you can do about it over here. It takes so long, or it does the magazine so much good."

Q: "Can you do something about it in other countries?"

JOHN: "In England, they wouldn't be allowed to write they stuff they write here. They'd be sued. It's libel."

PAUL: "The only thing we can do here is just tell anyone who reads 'em that they are trash."

RINGO: "It's a load of crap."

PAUL: "...and that what is written is mainly rubbish. But, read 'em and remember that they are rubbish. 'Cuz most people believe 'em, you know."

Q: "Can you show the people on my television show that Ringo really does wear rings?"

PAUL: "Can ya show 'em that, Ringo? There ya go, look at that."

RINGO: (holding up his hands) "There you go, baby."

PAUL: (jokingly) "Look at those rings!"

RINGO: "How about that. I've only had them on four years, folks."

GEORGE: (jokingly) "Big hand for the rings."

M.C: "Coming to the last questions. Must be the last three questions."

PAUL: "Ok."

Q: "I have heard that you are simply agnostic and you have been accused of being irreverent yourself."

PAUL: "Us?"

Q: "I'd like to ask, do you think you are irreverent, and what you do believe in?"

PAUL: "Well, we're not... We are agnostic, so there's no point in being irreverent, 'cuz we'd be atheists if we were gonna be, you know."

JOHN: "I think, when the irreverent bit came in, it was just a description of us as a whole, not meaning we were irreverent towards religion or anything particular."

PAUL: "I mean, you know... We'll make jokes."

JOHN: "Well, that's what they thought when they saw our hair at first. They thought it was irreverent, you know. But it means only that."

Q: "Do you plan to go to any beaches?"

PAUL: "Not really."

RINGO: "No."

PAUL: "No, I don't think so."

Q: "Do you see anything but hotel rooms?"

JOHN: "When we're on tour we don't want to see anything but hotel rooms. We get a lot of time off, we can see where we want then."

GEORGE: "We see stadiums and airports."

PAUL: "You should see our hotel rooms, though."

Q: "It has been stated that politically you have a certain apathy. Since you've been now entitled 'Members of the British Empire,' has it changed your attitudes towards politics in general?"


JOHN: "We're not disinterested in politics, it's just politicians are disinteresting."

M.C: "This will be the last question."

Q: "Would you consider that the hairstyle you have pioneered is a sort of a protest, a form of rebellion against convention?"

JOHN: "No."

GEORGE: "We just like it long."

PAUL: "We just like long hair, that's all."

PAUL: "I mean, you know... You like short hair, we like long. Da da da din din din."

RINGO: (singing) "They like long hair, we like short. Out to get ya, go to port."

M.C: "That's where we must end the questioning."

Source: Transcribed by from audio recording of the press conference
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