Forewords by authors Richard Buskin and Lesley-Ann Jones.
It’s All Too Much is the unique memoir by music industry veteran David Stark, who grew up in north London during the 1960s as a dedicated Beatles fan and was lucky enough to meet his musical heroes on various memorable occasions. From gate-crashing the Yellow Submarine film premiere in 1968 (aged just fifteen) and ending up sitting directly behind the group, to meeting all of them individually in some extraordinary circumstances, David has some highly entertaining stories about his many Beatles encounters which have never been told before.
As he says, “I was extremely lucky to have been in the right time and place to witness some of pop music’s most iconic moments during the late ’60s. Apart from crashing the Yellow Submarine premiere, I was also at the Rolling Stones’ legendary Rock And Roll Circus film shoot where John Lennon played; watched Jimi Hendrix supporting The Who at the Saville Theatre in early 1967 with all the Beatles present; and was also there when Hendrix sensationally opened another famous show with his version of ‘Sgt. Pepper’.
“I was also present (and photographed) at John and Yoko’s court appearance following their infamous drug bust in 1968, and met them right up until they left for New York in 1971. I’ve also met Paul many times up to the present day, of which I have some great stories. I once introduced George Harrison to my mum at the Albert Hall, while another time I cheekily visited Ringo with a pal to ask him out for a drink one Saturday night. By a mix of chutzpah, sheer nerve and luck I got to meet all the Beatles in person on many occasions, and even received letters from them a couple of times.”
However, David’s stories don’t end with the 1960s, as he continued to encounter all the individual Beatles into the 1970s and beyond, culminating in 2006 when Sir Paul McCartney inducted him as a ‘Companion of LIPA’ at the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts for his work with songwriting students. He also knew the late Sir George Martin, who has his own chapter in the book, as does John Lennon’s legendary Aunt Mimi, whom David visited and became friends with just months after Lennon’s senseless murder in 1980.
David is also a life-long drummer who plays with the Trembling Wilburys tribute band, as well as having played drums with The Quarrymen on one occasion. He was also responsible for the erection of an official Blue Plaque for the late Brian Epstein outside his old offices in London’s Argyll Street in 2014; and was one of a small group of fellow supporters who, in 2019, achieved the placing of a long-awaited Blue Plaque at 3 Savile Row to mark the Beatles’ final live appearance on the roof of Apple in 1969.
All these stories and many more are included in the book, along with numerous photographs from David’s personal collection and other sources. There has never been a Beatles book quite this one, with so many extraordinary first-hand experiences all told with a great sense of humour. A must-read for all Fabs fans!
Cover artwork by Ingrid Black
About the Author
Originally from Stanmore and Edgware in north London, David Stark started work after leaving school for Premier Drums, before joining Dick James Music, Decca Records and MAM Records as international press officer. He later moved over to the press side of the business, working for Billboard/Music & Media and editing such magazines as Sound Engineer & Producer before launching his own title, SongLink International, for songwriters and music publishers in 1993, which he still publishes today online.
He is the recipient of a prestigious BASCA Gold Badge Award for services to the music industry, and was inducted as a Companion of LIPA by Sir Paul McCartney in 2006. He has also adjudicated at many song contest around the world; was co-founder of the Unisong International Contest; and is regarded by many as one of the best-connected people in the entire music industry.
It’s All Too Much is David’s second book after co-writing Inspirations – Original Lyrics and the Stories Behind The Greatest Songs with Mike Read and Michael Randolfi in 1997.