Hamburg

By Paul McCartney  

Mersey Beat: September 20 1962

Paul McCartney The first time we went to Hamburg we stayed four and a half months. It's a sort of blown up Blackpool, but with strip clubs instead of waxworks; thousands of strip clubs, bars and pick-up joints, not very picturesque. The first time it was pretty rough, but we all had a geer time. The pay wasn't too fab, the digs weren't much good, and we had to play for quite a long time. The club was a small place called the Indra and was owned by the proprietor of the Kaiser Keller, where we also played.

One night we played at the Top Ten Club and all the customers from the Kaiser Keller came along. Since the Top Ten was a much better club, we decided to accept the manager's offer and play there. Naturally, the manager of the Kaiser Keller didn't like it. One night, prior to leaving his place, we accidentally singed a bit of chord on an old stone wall in the corridor, and he had the police on us. He told them that we'd tried to burn his place down, so they said: "Leave please, thanks very much, but we don't want you to burn our German houses." Funny, really, because we couldn't have burnt the place if we had gallons of petrol - it was made of stone.

There was an article on the group in a German magazine. I didn't understand the article, but there was a large photograph of us in the middle page. In the same article there was a photograph of a South African Negro pushing the jungle down. I still don't quite know what he has to do with us, but I suppose it has some significance.

Editors' note: This was part of yet another letter which Paul wrote to me. In some ways it has similarities to John's 'Dubious Origins' piece where he mentions their first German trip.

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