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In 1962, Little Richard Only Thought One Of The Beatles Would Make It

It's hard to believe that a band as big as The Beatles once needed to ask fellow musicians for help getting exposure. But that's what happened in 1962 when the pre-Fab Four's manager Brian Epstein asked rock pioneer Little Richard to lend them a bit of his star power when the Good Golly, Miss Molly singer toured England.

In a 1984 interview with journalist Bill Boggs, Little Richard recalled his meeting with Epstein. "He said, 'Richard, I've got four guys - would you mind taking a picture with my group?' He said, 'One day I hope they record and become famous.' "

Epstein also asked him to help The Beatles break into the American market. In exchange, Richard would receive a cut of their earnings. But he turned Epstein down because he didn't think the mop-topped group would go anywhere.

"[Epstein] said, 'I'll give you a percentage to take this tape back to the states,' which I didn't even take. I didn't believe they was going to make it - to tell you the truth."

Richard did, however, think Paul McCartney - who turns 74 today - could have made it as a solo act. "Paul was unbelievable. I felt that he could make it himself."

And Richard wanted to do something to help the group out, so he invited them to perform as an opening act for his concert later that year at The Star Club in Hamburg, Germany. During the trip, he mentored McCartney by teaching him to sing the signature "Oooooh" from songs like Tutti Frutti.

"He wanted to learn my little holler," Richard said according to Beatles Biographer Keith Badman. "So we sat at the piano going 'Ooooh' until he got it."

And you can hear him using it on tracks like The Beatles' cover of Richard's "Long Tall Sally." Check out the two tracks to decide who has the better "Ooooooh."

h/t Jazz Wax


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