Interview: Laurence Juber treats fans to a musical journey from Irving Berlin to the Beatles

It's a warm night in Redwood City, California, and former Wings guitarist Laurence Juber is preparing for a show coming up at the Club Fox. The talk, not too surprisingly, centers around his just-released “LJ Can't Stop Playing the Beatles!,” his third album of his own arrangements of Beatles songs following “LJ Plays the Beatles” and “LJ Plays the Beatles, Volume 2”. It's a wonderful album. His wife, Hope, who is the daughter of Sherwood Schwartz, the man behind “Gilligan's Island” and “The Brady Bunch,” and produced the previous two Beatles albums helped convince him to do another.

“She's a huge Beatles fan and she's a fan of what I do. And because the first one did so well and she liked the second one even better than the first one that it just made sense from her point of view to do another one.”

The previous albums were also popular with his fans, he said. “It made sense to do it because people seem to like my Beatles arrangements.” It also marked the first album on their own new label, Hologram Records. “(It's) Hope and Laurence. And my brother is Graham thinks he's in there, too, (but) it's gram as in gramophone.

The couple was really inspired after a trip to Liverpool for International Beatles Week. “We came back infused with Beatles spirit, and then started recording the album immediately after that. Some of the arrangements were kind of done in progress. And others I'd been working on and off for some time. The first one we recorded is 'Honey Pie,' which is the last track on the album.”

“LJ Can't Stop Playing the Beatles!” might be the last in the series, though. “It's kind of a thing I've gotten into,” he continues. “I don't know that I would do another one. I might do the occasional Beatles song on another album,” he says.

The intimate concert that night is two hours will all sorts of musical styles ranging from Irving Berlin to Jimi Hendrix with, of course, many Beatles songs, including “And Your Bird Can Sing,” which kicks off the new album, “I Saw Her Standing There,” “She Loves You” and a medley of “Here Comes the Sun” and “While My Guitar Gently Weeps.” He ends the night singing an energetic encore of Chuck Berry's “Johnny B. Goode,” his only vocal of the evening.

Besides his records and shows, he's involved with other projects, one of which is a series of videos by the Nasty Housewives featuring wife Hope Juber and Marcy Levy doing satirical songs about the Trump Administration. (You can see "Overrated" on this page.) He said an album of songs by the group might be out by the summer. And he talks like a very proud father of his daughter, Ilsey, who's making quite a career for herself as a songwriter, having composed songs for a long list of well-known artists, including Mariah Carey, Major Lazer, Drake, Nick Jonas and Beyonce. Musical talent definitely runs through the family.

Talking about the album again, he says, “I think part of (doing) it is just because, from a metaphysical point of view, much in the same way as we have a classical canon, (like) Bach, Mozart, etc., we also have a rock canon. And the Beatles are part of the rock canon.” Yeah, yeah, yeah.