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Why 1967 wasn’t just about the Beatles | Bangkok Post: opinion

Why 1967 wasn’t just about the Beatles | Bangkok Post: opinion

Why 1967 wasn’t just about the Beatles | Bangkok Post: opinion
June 11
09:18 2017

While writing about the 50th anniversary of Sgt Pepper a fortnight ago, it soon became apparent that 1967 was quite a remarkable year for a whole host of reasons aside from the Lonely Hearts Club Band. A quick glance at what was going on in 1967 might evoke a few memories among fellow wrinklies.On the war front, with Lyndon Baines Johnson in the White House, the US increased the number of troops in Vietnam to a massive 525,000. There was also a considerable American presence in Thailand with the US Air Force operating out of half-a-dozen bases in the kingdom supporting the war effort.It was in 1967 that John McCain (now senator) was shot down and seriously injured over North Vietnam and was to spend more than five years incarcerated in a Hanoi prison. In other news related to the war Muhammed Ali was stripped of his heavyweight title after refusing the draft, saying “I ain’t got no quarrel with them Viet Cong”.Britain witnessed a spectacular shipwreck when the Torrey Canyon ran aground off Land’s End after the captain took an unfortunate short cut, spilling 100,000 tonnes of crude oil into the sea. Fashion model Twiggy hit the big time and mini-skirts got even shorter. The first-ever ATM was introduced in London — little did they know what they had started. Another breakthrough was the first heart transplant.In sport, the very first Super Bowl was won by the Green Bay Packers. On the entertainment side, The Graduate and Bonnie and Clyde were the two biggest films, with Guess Who’s Coming To Dinner also making a big impact. Elvis married Priscilla and Rolling Stone magazine was launched with John Lennon on its first cover. You could say 1967 was quite a year.Love is all aroundIn music, 1967 experienced the “Summer of Love” and appropriately two of the biggest hits were the Beatles’ All You Need Is Love and Scott Mckenzie’s San Francisco. It was a huge year for pop music with so many memorable songs. Among them was Light My Fire (Doors), Respect (Aretha Franklin), Ruby Tuesday (Rolling Stones), A Whiter Shade of Pale (Procul Harem), I Was Made To Love Her (Stevie Wonder), Ode to Billie Joe (Bobby Gentry), Penny Lane (Beatles) and The Letter (Box Tops). Those tunes should stir a few dormant brain cells.When Harry met JayneAmong the famous people who died in 1967 were Che Guevara, in Bolivia, and soul singer Otis Redding, killed in a plane crash. Film star casualties included Spencer Tracey and Vivien Leigh. But it was the death of sex symbol Jayne Mansfield and her partner in a horrific car accident near New Orleans that affected staff at the Bangkok Post the most, and for good reason.Earlier in the year, the actress was in Bangkok on her way back from entertaining the US troops in Vietnam. While in Bangkok she gave a press conference at the old Amarin Hotel. Among those in attendance was the Post’s Harry Rolnick. The actress seemed to take a liking to handsome Harry and asked if he would show her around Bangkok the following day. He was naturally delighted and the next morning he picked her up at the hotel. Harry recalls: “She was wearing a sexy white blouse, a very high skirt and knee-high boots. A very Texan movie star and she looked quite nice.”The sightseersSo off they went, visiting assorted attractions including Wat Phra Kaew. At the temple Jayne was so fascinated by the first monk she saw she wanted to hug him, but Harry quickly intervened explaining why that was not a good idea.They also visited the cramped Bangkok Post office on Ratchadamnoen Avenue. Just imagine the faces of the editorial staff when Harry waltzed in with Ms Mansfield in tow. According to one proofreader, “eyes were popping all over the place … I’ll never forget it”.On the way back Jayne asked Harry to take her to the Sani Chateau nightclub later that night where she was performing. The show was to finish at 11pm and she told him, “get your people at the newspaper together and we’ll all go out”. It turned out to be quite a night.One night in BangkokTrue to her word, Jayne showed up at an upstairs Thai nightclub in Wang Burapha. Harry describes the scene: “At 11.30pm nearly everyone from the Post was at a long table. Jayne and her partner/manager Sam Brody were in the centre. The place was so loud … but we all had a good time. Beer was flowing, Jayne and Sam were leaning back and enjoying it.”Then a weird thing happened. There was bit of a disturbance when a rather eccentric Indian sub-editor came up the stairs loudly asking, “Where is Jayne Mansfield?” He claimed he had a premonition.According to Harry: “He came in, saw her and Sam Brody and suddenly shouted out ‘Oh no!, oh no! They’re going to die. Jayne Mansfield is going to die soon’.” It was a most uncomfortable moment, but Jayne didn’t take any notice and the fellow was hustled out of the door. Harry later took Jayne and Sam back to the hotel and they left for the US the next day.Only four months later they took that fateful car journey to New Orleans.Contact PostScript via em

Source: Why 1967 wasn’t just about the Beatles | Bangkok Post: opinion

About Author

Martin Nethercutt

Martin Nethercutt

Martin A Nethercutt is a writer, singer, producer and loves music. Creative Director at McCartney Studios Editor-in-Chief at McCartney Times Creator-in-Chief at Geist Musik President (title) at McCartney Multimedia, Inc. Went to Albert-Schweitzer-Schule Kassel Lives in Playa del Rey From Kassel, Germany Married to Ruth McCartney

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