Reviews are starting to come in about the documentary Good Ol’ Freda. Freda was Freda Kelly, longtime head of the Beatles Fan Club. Since first hearing about this project a few weeks back, I have been surfing the internet to learn more about this amazing woman–just a girl of seventeen when she met John, Paul, George, and Pete in Liverpool over half a century ago. She seems a woman of tremendous grace and spirit. Working for the Beatles was exceptionally difficult, the workload intense and the employers entitled and demanding. John Lennon spoke in the Playboy interview about the sarcastic put downs and verbal abuse the band members frequently unleashed on Neil Aspinall, Mal Evans, and other aides. I have no idea if they did this to their club secretary, but Lennon did fired her at one point; when he tried to recant she made him literally get on his knees and ask for forgiveness. He understood the power of a good woman. I have not seen it yet because the film has just now started the festival circuit, but I am glad she chose not to produce a tell all exposé. I have no interest in which ones, if any, she may have slept with, or what she may have seen during craziest moments of Beatlemania. And don’t kid yourself, Beatlemania had its tawdry underside. Like many in the inner circle, she seemed glad to serve and asked for little in return. There is something to be said for restraint. After the breakup Ms. Kelly had a trove of material that, instead of selling on the increasingly lucrative Beatle memorabilia market, she gave away piece by piece over the years to fans she thought worthy. Now she has given the rest of us this look inside one of the great phenomena of the 20th century. Look for it at your local art house this spring.

Reviews here, here, here.