Today (August 27th) marks the 52nd anniversary of the death of the Beatles' manager Brian Epstein. Epstein, who died of an accidental drug overdose at the age of 34, literally groomed the group from a scruffy, leather clad, bar band into the most successful and influential musicians of their time. In April 2014, Epstein was finally inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
In 1963, Brian Epstein described what he saw on December 9th, 1961 when he caught the Beatles' lunchtime gig at the soon-to-be legendary Cavern Club: “The Beatles were then just four lads on that rather dimly lit stage, somewhat ill-clad and their presentation — well, it left a little to be desired, as far as I was concerned. But, amongst all that, I was immediately struck by their, their music, their beat, and their sense of humor, actually, on stage.”
Epstein, who ran the music division of his parents' Liverpool department store, discovered the band in late 1961 and in just over six months had secured them their record deal with EMI Records. During his six years managing the band, Epstein's office supervised all of their personal and professional cares, including tour schedules, police security, personal mortgages, honeymoons, vacations, publicity, and much more. Epstein served as the best man to John Lennon and Ringo Starr at their weddings, and at George Harrison's wedding, he shared best man duties with Paul McCartney. In 1963, John and Cynthia Lennon named Epstein the godfather to their only child, Julian Lennon.