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The Beatles and Hot Cross Buns

Beatles for Sale in 1964 and they still sound great!

During last week’s great hot cross bun bake-off, I found companionship, joy, and energy in The Beatles. I am not kidding!

Do this right now: find the original recording of John Lennon singing Twist and Shout (on the Please Please Me album)! I defy anyone not to stay still, let alone dance, while listening to this ball of energy. See if you can stop the goosebumps and thrill racing up the spine. Just try staying unmoved by John’s singing!

Was John mouthing the words, giving a blasé performance? No! He was giving everything he had left in his tired voice!

Giving it everything!

It is one of the great vocal performances in rock and roll. Recorded at the very end of the Beatles’ first recording session with producer George Martin at the control board. It was Monday, February 11, 1963.

One take, John!

John was suffering from a cold. He’d been drinking milk and sucking lozenges to soothe his sore throat. Martin knew Twist and Shout would demand a lot of the singer’s voice. He purposely left the song for the of the session. They had 15 minutes left in the studio before they had to clear out.

John pulled off his shirt, stepped up to the microphone and let loose! When he finished, his voice was shattered. They tried a second take, but it wasn’t to be. Didn’t matter, though. They had everything they needed and more in that one take! The Beatles had recorded the entire album in 10 hours. (If you listen carefully, you can hear the head cold in his voice).

I was a bleary-eyed baker in the wee hours of Friday, April 3, 2020, rolling dozens of dough balls in the dark of night. The Beatles’ energy and exuberance, led by John’s performance, fueled my passion, shaping and baking those hot cross buns!

“Shake it up, baby, now! Twist and shout!”

Thank you, Paul McCartney, George Harrison, Ringo Starr, and you too, John!

And if you have a Beatles playlist, keep the record player turning, or the streaming service streaming.

Listen to the songs that follow, each one a gem! All My Loving, Help!, Eight Days a Week, Norwegian Wood, A Day in the Life, Lovely Rita, Lucy in the Sky, All You Need is Love, Across the Universe, Strawberry Fields, While My Guitar Gently Weeps, Mean Mr. Mustard, Helter Skelter, Happiness is a Warm Gun, Something in the Way, Why Don’t We Do It in the Road! Her Majesty. The list is almost endless!

Rolling hot cross dough ball number 253, flour all over the floor, I sang and danced along with every word of She Came In Through the Bathroom Window, I’m Looking Through You, I’m So Tired, and Yesterday. And every other song that came up!

Loaded with innovation

Somehow the lyrics of all the Beatle songs have stayed in my sagging memory vaults. I could climb into each one that came over the headphones.

They’re loaded with innovation! Almost every song has a new sound, a new instrument, a unique arrangement. You can marvel at the musicianship, too. Did you know that Ringo was sidelined in several of the band’s early tracks because he wasn’t considered sophisticated enough? Today, drummers idolize him!

The Beatles, as most know them, were a world phenomenon for a mere seven years (1963 to 1970), yet their impact is still felt 57 years later! The songs are as alive and vital as they ever were.

No recording artist recognized by Billboard magazine has sold more albums than The Beatles, even today. Nor has any group or solo artist posted more No. 1 hits. Going just by the music made in those years, The Beatles posted 20 Billboard No. 1 singles, a lot more than Elvis!

Four lads from Liverpool

Their impact on our culture is staggering, yet they were just a band of “four lads from Liverpool.” I don’t believe they manipulated the culture like puppet-masters. They made ground-breaking music that appealed to a culture ready for change. The public ate the Beatles up!

I remember reading a 1971 Rolling Stone interview with John Lennon:

“We were four guys… I met Paul, and said, “Do you wanna join me band?”, you know, then George joined, and then Ringo joined. We were just a band who made it very, very big, that’s all. And sometimes—our best work was never recorded, you know.”

Sort of brings it down to earth, as John was so good at doing.

Yet the exuberance and energy they brought is undeniable, and it’s what we hear still in 2020. Even through the pain and disillusionment in songs like Help! You’ve Got to Hide Your Love Away or A Day in the Life.

The lasting impression is the sense of optimism and innocence, in much the same way the 1960s are viewed today.

Like hearing the songs for the first time, again

Jennifer and I were captivated by the movie, Yesterday, that appeared late last year. It was a cheesy romantic comedy that happened to have a significant impact on us. It was about a parallel universe in which the Beatles had never existed. The main character, a failing musician, was one of the only people who had a memory of the band. He recreates the songs as his own, performs them, and becomes a world phenomenon.

Cheesy, as I say, but hearing the songs in this context was like hearing them for the first time, or at least recapturing their spirit.

If you’re a Beatle fan, go see it. There is another development in the movie that I will not give away. No spoiler alert here, but let me say the tears were rolling down my cheeks.

So if you’re still eating Hot Cross Buns from last week, maybe you’ll taste a little She Loves You, or Yellow Submarine or The Long and Winding Road. And maybe you’ll start dancing around the kitchen, too!

Happy Monk Tidings - September 28, 2022 🍞 - Baker's Choice: The Approachable Loaf; Blog: This Island of Apples; South Pender Growers and Makers Market [ See LinkTree in Profile ]
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#apples #applebread #applelove #approachable #approachableloaf #breadlabcollective #breadlab

Happy Monk Tidings - September 28, 2022 🍞 - Baker's Choice: The Approachable Loaf; Blog: This Island of Apples; South Pender Growers and Makers Market [ See LinkTree in Profile ]
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#apples #applebread #applelove #approachable #approachableloaf #breadlabcollective #breadlab
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Introducing this bread, Raven Ring Bread (a take on Hapanleipä, a Finnish bread) a recipe borrowed from @ravenbreads. The stand is made by my neighbour, Ken, a gifted woodworker. See you at the South Pender Growers and Makers Market, if it don’t rain too hard!

Introducing this bread, Raven Ring Bread (a take on Hapanleipä, a Finnish bread) a recipe borrowed from @ravenbreads. The stand is made by my neighbour, Ken, a gifted woodworker. See you at the South Pender Growers and Makers Market, if it don’t rain too hard! ...

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It was a dirty day, Wednesday. The sky hadn't been washed, the ocean was soiled, and the air was muggy and smelled oily. Then, moments before the rain started, the sun shone through and a glorious slash of colour opened up. And a rainbow! No unicorns, sadly. ...

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Dog days. The beginning of summer mellowness. Baked in languor. But sometimes it's hard to let go. Shouldn't I be baking something? [See LinkTree in Profile ]
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#penderisland #southpenderisland #happymonkbaking #happymonkbakery
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#penderisland #southpenderisland #happymonkbaking #happymonkbakery
#happymonkbakingcompany #dogdays #dogdaysofsummer #southerngulfislands
#southerngulfislandsbakers #southerngulfislandsbakeries #southerngulfislandsbc
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This is James Morton, my father, who would have been 100 years old today if we hadn't lost him 36 years ago. I've surpassed him in living age and spent more years without him than with him, yet he still whispers in my ear and is a great listener when I talk to him. Taken at 14th Ave. and Burgess St., Burnaby, 'round about 1955. Handsome devil, ain't he?

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Happy Monk Tidings - July 6, 2022 🍞 - BAKER'S CHOICE: Cinnamon-Raisin Bread; BLOG: Filling the Belly: Words vs. Loaves [ See LinkTree in profile ]

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How many times have I seen these loaves tumble out of the oven! If I’m not in a rush, I like to pile them up and just stand near them a moment, feeling their heat, hearing them crackle, their glorious warm aroma! Seems like a miracle, been working hard since the dark hours of morning, heard the first birdsong, seen freighters moving silently through Boundary Pass, a gentle breeze coming up from the ocean. I know I’ll pay for all this later in the day with fatigue and there’ll be several days catching up with sleep. Is it worth it all? Three years into Happy Monk Baking, I still say yes. Happy sleeping, everyone!
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#woodfired #woodfiredoven #woodfiredovenbread #bread #realbread #naturallyleavened #baker #bakery #bbga #artisanbread #breadhead #breadmaking #breadmaking🍞 #sourdough #sourdoughbread #rusticbread, #breadhead, #coboven #earthoven #earthenoven #penderisland #southpenderisland #happymonkbaking #happymonkbakery #happymonkbakingcompany #southerngulfislands #southerngulfislandsbakers #southerngulfislandsbakeries #penderisland

How many times have I seen these loaves tumble out of the oven! If I’m not in a rush, I like to pile them up and just stand near them a moment, feeling their heat, hearing them crackle, their glorious warm aroma! Seems like a miracle, been working hard since the dark hours of morning, heard the first birdsong, seen freighters moving silently through Boundary Pass, a gentle breeze coming up from the ocean. I know I’ll pay for all this later in the day with fatigue and there’ll be several days catching up with sleep. Is it worth it all? Three years into Happy Monk Baking, I still say yes. Happy sleeping, everyone!
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#woodfired #woodfiredoven #woodfiredovenbread #bread #realbread #naturallyleavened #baker #bakery #bbga #artisanbread #breadhead #breadmaking #breadmaking🍞 #sourdough #sourdoughbread #rusticbread, #breadhead, #coboven #earthoven #earthenoven #penderisland #southpenderisland #happymonkbaking #happymonkbakery #happymonkbakingcompany #southerngulfislands #southerngulfislandsbakers #southerngulfislandsbakeries #penderisland
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Fun at 4 in the morning … first load of bread in the oven, first light, first birdsong, making the treacherous walk back inside with a tower of bannetons. In the rain.
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#bakerslife #bakersofinstagram #baking #baker #woodfired #woodfiredoven #woodfiredovenbread #coboven #earthoven #earthenoven #bread #sourdoughbread #sourdough #bbga #realbread #naturallyleavened #artisanbread #artisanbreadbaker #rusticbread #breadhead #breadlove #breadhour #penderisland #southpenderisland #happymonkbaking #happymonkbakery #happymonkbakingcompany #southerngulfislands #southerngulfislandsbakers #southerngulfislandsbakeries

Fun at 4 in the morning … first load of bread in the oven, first light, first birdsong, making the treacherous walk back inside with a tower of bannetons. In the rain.
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#bakerslife #bakersofinstagram #baking #baker #woodfired #woodfiredoven #woodfiredovenbread #coboven #earthoven #earthenoven #bread #sourdoughbread #sourdough #bbga #realbread #naturallyleavened #artisanbread #artisanbreadbaker #rusticbread #breadhead #breadlove #breadhour #penderisland #southpenderisland #happymonkbaking #happymonkbakery #happymonkbakingcompany #southerngulfislands #southerngulfislandsbakers #southerngulfislandsbakeries
...

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Happy Monk Tidings - June 1, 2022 🍞 - Baker's Choice: Fig and Fennel Sourdough; Happy Monk Blog: The Golden City [ LinkTree in Profile ]

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Post to The Happy Monk Baking Company
Happy Monk Tidings - May 25, 2022 🍞 - Baker's Choice this week: Sprouted Kamut Bread; Blog: A Paean to Rye Bread: Deeply Felt and Honest [ See LinkTree in Profile ]

Post to The Happy Monk Baking Company
Happy Monk Tidings - May 25, 2022 🍞 - Baker's Choice this week: Sprouted Kamut Bread; Blog: A Paean to Rye Bread: Deeply Felt and Honest [ See LinkTree in Profile ]
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