Doug Sulpy

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Doug Sulpy is one of those Beatles fanatics who seems to have unlimited time to examine the finest points of the great group's career. Unlike many of those fans, though, he progressed beyond the fanzine/fan…
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Doug Sulpy is one of those Beatles fanatics who seems to have unlimited time to examine the finest points of the great group's career. Unlike many of those fans, though, he progressed beyond the fanzine/fan convention stage to actually co-author a notable book about the band. Starting in the mid-'80s, he edited the fanzine Illegal Beatles, devoted in its entirety to incredibly minute studies of bootlegs by the Beatles and solo ex-Beatles. These were unattractively designed, and heavy with lists that would cause most eyes to glaze over, save for those who detail their albums with file drawers' worth of index cards. These did, however, have some informative and sometimes witty commentary and descriptions of unreleased Beatles music. Unlike many other obsessed fans, Sulpy did not shy away from criticizing some of the group's lesser moments, sometimes in a flippant or even catty fashion. A lot of material from issues 1-15 of Illegal Beatles was published in the small-press paperback, Illegal Beatles: Archival Back Issues 1986-1988 (by Storyteller Productions).

In the '90s, Sulpy published the Beatles magazine, The 910, and wrote for publications including Goldmine and Musician. With Ray Schweighardt, a 910 writer who also publishes a Beatles newsletter (How Do You Do It? , Sulpy wrote Get Back: The Unauthorized Chronicle of the Beatles Let It Be Disaster. Working with access to many hours of unreleased tapes and film footage, he reconstructed in painstaking detail the Beatles' recording and film sessions from January 1969, the month in which the group first verged on breaking up. The writing is much more objective and accomplished than the commentary accompanying Illegal Beatles, and is a significant addition to Beatles scholarship for the light it throws on the tensions that led to their dissolution.