George Martin Reveals What Really Made Him Sign The Beatles In Candid Clip

By Andrew Magnotta @AndrewMagnotta

January 19, 2022

Photo: Michael Ochs Archives

George Martin's first meeting with The Beatles has been well covered through history, but accounts of that historic day have usually been recorded by journalists or historians.

In a new clip recorded some years back, shared by George's son, Giles Martin, the groundbreaking producer again looks back on his first encounter with the band during a conversation at home with his young granddaughter.

The clip, presumably recorded by Giles, finds George relaxing on the couch next to Giles' daughter. The producer begins by recalling a conversation with longtime Beatles manager Brian Epstein.

After first objecting to the band name 'The Beetles,' George recalls agreeing to have the group come down to London for and audition.

"When I listened to what they did, it was okay, but it wasn't brilliant. It was okay. You know, I thought, 'Why should I be interested in this?'" George said.

But as the session went on and George spoke with the band members — then John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Pete Best — he realized that he really liked who they were as people.

"But the magic bit came when I started to get to know them, because they were terribly good people," Martin continued. "You know they were funny, they were very clever, they said all lovely things. They were the kind of people that you liked to be with. So I thought if I feel this way about them, other people might feel this way about them. So therefore, they should be very popular."

Martin agreed to sign the Beatles, and Best was soon replaced by Ringo Starr. Within two years, The Beatles were an international phenomenon.

"Ordinary people do extraordinary things," Giles added of the clip. "Great decisions are made for the simplest reasons."

You can watch the clip via the player below.

The Beatles
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