“My band, my boys, my music!” remarked Donna Parsons, lecturer in the UI College of Music, at a UIRA program January 9 at the Coralville Public Library.
She was talking about her passion for studying the Beatles and how they and their music were influenced by their upbringing and their hometown of Liverpool. More than 40 retirees braved temperatures hovering around zero to attend the program
Parsons has spent the last 11 summers in Liverpool, home of the Beatles, uncovering Beatle connections. She said she continually discovers people who remember the foursome growing up and cultivating their musical talents. A social and cultural historian, Parsons has been tracing the sites that influenced the Beatles’ songs as well as where the Beatles honed their craft and built a fan base. Her slide presentation was a Beatle exploration of Liverpool titled “Magic Mythical Tour: In Search of the Beatles.”
“Every time I’m in Liverpool,” said Parsons, "I get more stories from people who were acquainted with one of the Beatles or had heard their music in person in local clubs.”
Over the years Parsons has collected Beatle memorabilia, including published material, which was browsed by retirees. A map showed the proximity of a few important Beatle landmarks, including 251 Menlove Avenue (named Mendips and the childhood home of John Lennon), the Penny Lane Roundabout, Strawberry Field (a short walk from Lennon’s home) and St. Peter’s Church where John Lennon first met Paul McCartney.
For a more complete report of Parsons’ presentation, go to the UIRA website: https://uira.shutterfly.com/pictures/499