Welcome back for another Beatles Rarity of the Week. In July 2005, American filmmaker David Lynch founded the David Lynch Foundation (DLF), a non-profit organization established to fund the implementation of scientifically proven stress-reducing modalities for at-risk populations (schools, military, women, American Indians, homeless shelters, prisons, etc.). To understand more about why this is considered a very worthwhile cause, I encourage you to check out the short video clip at www.davidlynchfoundation.org.
Before the year of 2005 was over, DLF got behind providing a TM (Transcendental Meditation) program to schools for students in grades 4 through 12. Concerning this, David told ABC News in an interview:
Kids come to school and they meditate together for 15 minutes in the morning. And before they go home they meditate for 15 minutes. A lot of them come from, you know, bad situations, and so this gives them this thing at the beginning and the end of the day. The rest of the time you just watch the violence stop.
In 1968, The Beatles saw the value of TM when they went on a sojourn to Rishikesh, India to learn more about it from the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. Realizing the benefit of meditation as a stress-relieving and beneficial therapy for troubled children was therefore not such a jump for the two surviving Beatles and certainly reason enough for both of them to get behind a benefit concert for DLF with the mission of funding a program that pledged to teach one million at-risk children to meditate and change the world from within.
The event took place at New York City’s Radio City Music Hall on April 4th, 2009 and was dubbed the Change Begins Within Concert. On April 29th, 2012 many PBS stations across the U.S. premiered television coverage from this event, but an official video release of the show has not appeared. Performers included comedian Jerry Seinfeld, Sheryl Crowe, Eddie Vedder, Moby, Ben Harper and Donovan. The headlining acts were Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr. The two former Beatles reunited for the final three songs in Paul’s set. This was their first concert appearance together in a very long time. Listen now as Paul brings out Ringo (introduced as “Billy Shears”) to sing the first of these three closers.
Paul McCartney & Ringo Starr - With A Little Help From My Friends
After the performance heard above, the final closers which made up the encore, were Paul’s 1993-released “Cosmically Conscious” which was a very appropriate choice, as Paul explains, because it’s about TM and was actually inspired by the Maharishi. Paul wrote the song in 1968 while in India. The other performing artists were present onstage for this and for the final encore performance which was the old Beatles classic “I Saw Her Standing There.”
Here are some Amazon links to read more on, or purchase, some music related to this post:
1) Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band – 2009 CD remaster of original 1967 stereo LP featuring original Beatles version of “With A Little Help From My Friends.”
2) Off the Ground – original 1993 Paul McCartney CD featuring edited reprise of “Cosmically Conscious” (complete version from Off The Ground CD single is out of print)