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Remembering Neil Aspinall

Remembering Neil Aspinall — The ”fifth Beatle” and his musical legacy

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You never hear anyone talk about ”the third White Stripe” or ”the sixth New Kid on the Block.” But that’s the legendary nature of the Fab Four: So many people have been hailed as ”the fifth Beatle,” from producer George Martin to manager Brian Epstein to early guitarist Stuart Sutcliffe (who played with the group when there actually were five of them). But no one deserves the accolade more than Neil Aspinall, who died March 24 of lung cancer in New York. A onetime driver and road manager, Aspinall also served as their personal assistant at the height of Beatlemania. In 1968, he took over their new record company, Apple, and looked after their affairs for four decades (he retired in April 2007), notably masterminding the acclaimed 1995 Beatles Anthology documentary series.