The announcement was made in a press release by Roag Best, museum founder and CEO. Notably, Best is the brother of original Beatles drummer Pete Best, and son of former head of the Beatles Apple Corps., Neil Aspinall. The ambassadorship will be given to Leyva during a reception in Liverpool on Aug. 26.
“The museum will be honoring three exemplary community leaders who represent the museums message of preservation of the Beatles historical lineage, conservation and awareness of the museum and the city of Liverpool with its message promoting the heritage of the Casbah museum, and its contributions to the world of popular music as the birthplace of the Beatles,” Best said.
Leyva met Best on Falling Doves tours of England, ultimately helping bring Pete Best to San Diego for the 2018 Beatles Fair. He was also instrumental in getting a City of San Diego proclamation declaring March 31 as “Pete Best Day” in the city.
“It really is a dream come true,” said Leyva. “I’ve been a Beatles fan my whole life, so to now get an opportunity to contribute to the museum like this, is to me incredible.”
Falling Doves tour much of the year, so Leyva plans to do a lot of work around his gigs. “It’s something I can do anywhere I’m on the planet,” he said. “I’ll identify opportunities, work with corporate sponsors where appropriate. Really, anything that is positive, I’m happy to get involved with.”
So far this year the band has toured Norway, Japan and Australia, with South America, England, Scotland France and Turkey all on the itinerary for the last quarter of the year. “it’s not always an easy life, being on the road so much, but I wouldn’t have it any other way,” he said. “Needing to be mobile, we have to travel light. Luckily a lot venues in Japan and Europe have backlines and we’ve made a lot of friends on the road, so there’s been help there as well.”
Leyva does admit to occasional bouts of home sickness on the road. “I do miss home and that’s always what I’ll consider OB,” he said. “It’s like my hideout where I can unwind for a minute, before it all starts up again.”
While working on various museum projects will occupy a large part of his time, he notes that Falling Doves plays their own music on tour. “We have been known to include a Beatles cover,” he said. “But we have over a dozen albums with songs to choose from. There are parts of all this that overlap, but the band and this good will appointment are two separate things.”
Future plans for Leyva include an album release party at the legendary Liverpool club, The Cavern, on Aug. 14 for Falling Doves latest album, “Rise of the Serpent,” as well as new videos. But in the meantime, he is thrilled with his new position. “I’m still trying wrap my head around it,” he said good naturedly. “But it’s going to be great to be promoting the museum in an official capacity. I’m sure there will be hard work ahead, but this really is a dream job,” he said. “After all, just about everybody loves The Beatles.”
For more information, visit magicalbeatlesmuseum.com.