This salary receipt and those in lots 232 and 233 are thought to be the three earliest work-associated documents signed by all five original Beatles, to have appeared on the market.
Although the Top Ten Club is not mentioned on this receipt or those in the following two lots, they were found at that address, 136 Reeperbahn, Hamburg, in an accounts ledger, some years later. The period covered by this receipt represents the third week of The Beatles second visit to Germany. The highlight of this second engagement in Germany was the Beatles' first professional recording session, which came about as a result of their association with Tony Sheridan, and which in turn led to the release of their debut single.
One night in April 1961, an associate of Bert Kaempfert's visited the Top Ten club to see Tony Sheridan and was impressed by the Beatles, who were backing him that night. This Sheridan/Beatles association was recommended to Bert Kaempfert, the German bandleader, composer and producer. After seeing them for himself, Kaempfert signed The Beatles up with a recording and publishing contract. On June 22nd they went to the recording studio where they backed Tony Sheridan on five songs and recorded two on their own. Two months later when the group had returned to Liverpool, Polydor released two of the songs My Bonnie and The Saints on a single which was credited to Tony Sheridan and the Beat Brothers. According to Mark Lewisohn, ...The label had been afraid to use the word Beatles in case it was confused with the similar sounding 'peedles' north German slang for penis... The Beatles' debut single reputedly sold 100,000 copies and reached number five in the local hit parade.
Prior to this, the debut appearance of lots 231-233, the only two other known examples of the five original Beatles' signatures ever to have appeared on the market, were sold through these rooms, one on August 25th, 1988, the other on December 10th, 1998.