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60 years of Liverpool music celebrated in new exhibition

Published: Wed July 09, 2008  News Feed

From The Beatles to The Zutons, Liverpool is a city buzzing with musical talent. This summer, the city that The Guinness Book of Records has named as World Capital City of Pop is host to an exciting exhibition dedicated to 60 years of Liverpool music. The Beat Goes On opens at World Museum Liverpool from 12 July 2008 to 1 November 2009. Admission is FREE.

A product of Liverpool's edginess, energy and creativity the exhibition explores the city's musical identity, its success and its continuing evolution. The exhibition reveals a rich musical heritage beginning with the early musical influences seeping into the city from across the Atlantic during the 1940s and 1950s, to the phenomenal success of Merseybeat and the continuing popularity of Merseyside musicians today.

Bursting with audio points, juke boxes and fascinating films, The Beat Goes On captures the vibrancy and creativity of Liverpool music.

Highlights include:

  • a hoard of fascinating objects and memorabilia from the Fab Four, including the first ever public display of the Woolton church stage where John and Paul first met in 1957 and one of the most vital pop collaborations was born. Other gems include the jacket worn by John Lennon during the band's 1964 tour and the vibrant All You Need is Love bedcover from John and Yoko's Bed-in-for-Peace demonstration in Montreal in 1969. The exhibition also provides an opportunity to look at the wealth of other bands that flourished in Liverpool during the swinging-sixties featuring archive video footage of other Merseybeat bands.
  • an evocative look at Liverpool's influential club Eric's, which opened in 1976. Displays include a Vivienne Westwood suit designed for the cult band Deaf School and a range of wonderful ephemera from band t-shirts, photographs, posters and badges. One display also looks at the plethora of bands and artists which came to prominence at the time such as Echo and the Bunnymen, Ian Brodie, OMD, Pete Burns and The Teardrop Explodes.
  • an immersive space looks at the buoyant dance scene in Liverpool from Quadrant Park, a legendary Liverpool night club in the early 1990s, through to the super-club Cream. Stunning visuals combine with fond memories by DJs and clubbers of hedonistic nights out in Liverpool.
  • an interactive exploration of the role of technology within modern music production. Working in collaboration with SAE (School of Audio Engineering) the exhibition features a mini-recording studio, attached to a karaoke-style room where visitors can sing along to classic Liverpool tunes and temporarily become the fifth Beatle or fourth Atomic Kitten! There is also a section for visitors to mix their own version of the OMD track Electricity and a version of Apple Mac's computer programme Garage Band for visitors to experience producing their own track.
  • objects from major Liverpool artists including Billy Fury's guitar and a dress made for Lita Roza, the first British female artist to ever have a UK number one hit in 1953 with How Much is that Doggie in the Window? (this was also the first Liverpool artist's UK number one).
  • contemporary material from the most fashionable current club nights in Liverpool such as Chibuku and popular bands like The Coral and The Zutons, who are populating the charts today and carrying on Liverpool's dominance in the area of popular music. The exhibition delves into the secret of successful music careers by exploring how musicians develop their skills, channel their inspiration and promote a strong identity.

The Beat Goes On is the first exhibition of its kind and draws on a wealth of material from record companies, institutions and private collectors as well as fascinating objects from National Museum Liverpool's own collection. The exhibition is supported by an online resource produced in collaboration with the Institute of Popular Music at the University of Liverpool. The exhibition also provides a small taste of the kind of displays that visitors will enjoy at Museum of Liverpool when it opens to the public in 2010/11.

The exhibition also has a myspace page, which features a player showcasing music from new, unsigned Liverpool bands. Visitors can vote on a poll to choose the best tracks, and the winners will be featured in the digital jukebox in the actual exhibition. One of the bands you can vote for In July's poll is The Crew, which features our very own Tom - go, Tom, go!


The Beat Goes On Myspace

World Museum Liverpool

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