Those readers familiar with R. Stevie Moore's mid-'80s output have perhaps heard the songs "Colliding Circles" and "Pink Litmus Paper Shirt." These titles had their origin in a 1971 article by aspiring music journalist Martin Lewis, who listed the songs, along with "Deckchair" and "Left Is Right (And Right Is Wrong)," in a piece on rare and unreleased BeaTles titles.
Since Lewis' article, these four songs have been regarded as the ultimate in BeaTles collectables -- referenced in numerous BeaTles history books -- though never surfacing on archival releases such as the BeaTles Anthology series or The Lost Lennon Tapes, nor on any of the myriad BeaTles bootlegs. Since the BeaTles' recordings of those songs seemed destined to be locked in their vaults for all time, avid BeaTles fan R. STevie was duly inspired to flesh out two of the titles as full-blown Stevie originals for his 1985 tape R. STevie Moore Is Worth IT (which also features a stunning cover of "Within You and Without You"). "Colliding Circles" went on to appear on both the cassette and album releases of Glad Music (1986).
As it turns out, Stevie's "inspired-by-the-title" cuts were just about the only "real" version of these songs! In January 1999, Martin Lewis revealed that those four titles were NOT BeaTles recordings after all - but were purely his fabrication! He confessed that in the process of writing an otherwise scholarly article on BeaTles rarities, he had felt the need for a few more titles to flesh out his article. On a whim he had included the titles of four of his own "extremely bad, imitation-BeaTles compositions -- written at the age of 14!" Many. many years later, to his surprise, horror (and a little glee!) he discovered that his spur-of-the-moment insertion had been erroneously incorporated by numerous writers into their own articles and books, and had thus become part of BeaTles mythology! Lewis -- whose career went on to include being a producer of all the "Secret Policeman's Ball" benefits, movies and albums starring Monty Python, as well as conceiving and executive- producing the RuTles' Archaeology spoof of the BeaTles Anthology, along with numerous TV producing credits -- became a comedic performer in his own right in 1990, principally appearing as a humorist and satirical commentator on American TV. He made his Beatles hoax confession as part of his first autobiographical one-man stage-show, Great Exploitations. (The news release giving full details of the hoax can be read in its entirety on Lewis' website at www.martinlewis.com/hoax.html.)
But of course, two of Lewis' fabricated Beatles songs now exist -- as R. Stevie Moore originals. Lewis stumbled across this website while doing an internet search for "Colliding Circles," and has since heard and given his enthusiastic approval to Stevie's "Colliding Circles" and "Pink Litmus Paper Shirt." Notwithstanding his teenage BeaTles prank, over the years Lewis has also come to be regarded as one of the world's leading BeaTles authorities, and he hosts the official Beatlefest fan conventions, held annually in New York and Los Angeles. He has invited Stevie to perform his two "Beatle" songs live at the upcoming New York-area convention at the Crowne Plaza Meadowlands, Secaucus, N.J., during the weekend of March 26-27-28, 1999. (Beatlefest details from www.beatlefest.com). Stay tuned to this website for details! Martin and Stevie are even discussing an idea to create real songs for the other two ersatz Beatles titles!