Bob Wooler first saw The Beatles perform on 2 July 1960 at the Grosvenor Ballroom in Wallasey, just across the Mersey from Liverpool, although he only witnessed their opening number. It wasn’t until the band returned home from their three-month residency in Hamburg that Bob became involved with the legendary outfit, arranging their homecoming appearance at Litherland Town Hall in North Liverpool on 27 December 1960. And The Beatles’ impact that night was tremendous, the audience going crazy and local promoters left in a state of shock, including Bob Wooler.
Two months earlier, Cavern club owner Ray McFall had offered Bob the role of compere and DJ during lunchtime sessions at his venue. And Bob wasted no time in securing a lunchtime slot for The Beatles, who made their Cavern debut on 9 February 1961. Barely two and a half years later, the band had amassed 292 appearances at the club, with Bob Wooler still on hand for the introductions when they made their final Cavern performance on 3 August 1963.
Throughout 1961, The Beatles’ popularity increased at a rapid rate, with Liverpool record store manager, 27-year-old Brian Epstein of NEMS Ltd, soon made aware of the love for the band, deciding to see them for himself during a Cavern lunchtime session. The outcome of that afternoon visit on 9 November 1961 was two-fold. He ultimately became The Beatles’ manager, then secured a successful recording audition for the group in June 1962 with Parlophone Records, whose release of debut single, ‘Love Me Do’, on 5 October 1962, marked the start of an amazing journey to global success for The Beatles.
Meanwhile, Epstein continued his management success elsewhere, creating a stable of artistes that – like The Beatles – initially proved a major draw at The Cavern, among them Liverpool’s Gerry & the Pacemakers, The Fourmost, and Cilla Black, plus Manchester’s Billy J. Kramer with The Dakotas.