Bernice Bing (1936 - 1998)
A San Francisco native, Chinese American, artist, lesbian, community activist—Bernice Bing, was a bridge between many worlds. She came of age during the Beat era and entered the San Francisco arts landscape in the 1960s with her paintings, which synthesize abstract modernist painting with Chinese calligraphy.
If you had to explain the Beatles’ impact to a stranger, you’d play them the soundtrack to A Hard Day’s Night. The songs, conceived in a hotel room in a spare couple of weeks between up-ending the British class system and conquering America, were full of bite and speed. There was adventure, knowingness, love, and abundant charm.
Every stage of the Beatles’ career had a complementary drug: speed (their Hamburg and Merseybeat period), cannabis (the sleepy Rubber Soul), acid (Revolver and Sgt. Pepper) and heroin (Lennon’s crack-up on The White Album). With A Hard Day’s Night, the drug was adrenaline. The world loved them, and the world was their plaything.
From Yeah! Yeah! Yeah!: The Story of Pop Music from Bill Haley to Beyoncé by Bob Stanley, out now in hardcover and ebook.