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Thread: The Beatles appraised

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    Default The Beatles appraised

    After so many decades have passed since this group was at the height of its powers and now that two of the members are deceased, the dust has settled. Their music is forever locked in history, unchanging and not dimmed by subsequent years. Still relevant, still excellent.

    For me their greatest song was "Eleanor Rigby" (and you can hear Bernard Herrmann's "Psycho" influence right here, thanks to George Martin): it truly is a great song.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HuS5NuXRb5Y

    A documentary was made about the Beatles by Howard Goodall: he gives an excellent account of these missions and this is highly recommended:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZQS91wVdvYc

    This is also a favourite song of mine from the Beatles:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xUNqsfFUwhY

    It makes you wonder whether without that song this one would have been written: absolutely bloody brilliant!!

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rC95MEenIxA
    Last edited by Christabel; Jul-08-2020 at 08:36. Reason: Dire Straits.

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    Moderator Art Rock's Avatar
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    When I started listening to pop/rock in the 70s, they were already history. I bought the red and blue double albums, and enjoyed many of their songs. Still do. But for me they were a 'songs band' rather than an 'album band' - even albums like Sgt Pepper and Abbey Road I like for a number of the songs, rather than wanting to listen to the albums.

    My favourite songs include:

    A day in the life
    Blackbird
    Eleanor Rigby
    Lucy in the sky with diamonds
    Penny Lane
    She's leaving home
    Strawberry fields
    The ballad of John and Yoko
    Yesterday

    They all hit a solid 5/6 on the Artrockometer. And there are dozens others I like to listen to.

    Fair warning: if you ever encounter me in a karaoke bar, one of the songs I always select is Back in the USSR.

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    Senior Member elgars ghost's Avatar
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    For me they will always endure - although later noted for ambitious arrangements and stretching the latest studio technology to its limit they could still do the simpler things well when they had to. I have relatively little interest in their early zesty pop period, though - for me the Help! album from the summer of 1965 is the point where things start to get really interesting.

    And in case the 'Would you reduce the White Album to a single album?' question comes up, my answer is not exactly - such was its long running time you could trim the White Album by twenty minutes and still be left with a double set weighing in at over 70 minutes.
    Last edited by elgars ghost; Jul-08-2020 at 09:59.
    '...a violator of his word, a libertine over head and ears in debt and disgrace, a despiser of domestic ties, the companion of gamblers and demireps, a man who has just closed half a century without a single claim on the gratitude of his country or the respect of posterity...' - Leigh Hunt on the Prince Regent (later George IV).

    ὃν οἱ θεοὶ φιλοῦσιν ἀποθνῄσκει νέος [Those whom the gods love die young] - Menander

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    Senior Member Jacck's Avatar
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    I am lukewarm about Beatles. It is an OK music, but nothing that would blow me away

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    Greatest Irish band EVER!


    Years ago my own fascination with the music of John Dowland began when I read a review from an English music critic comparing the music of the Fab Four to that of the 16th century songwriter, lutenist, and spy. Just like John Dowland, the Beatles aren't ever really going to go away. While the popularity and fanaticism of Beatlemania can never be repeated, there will always be folks who find their own personal gems in the repertoire.

    The Beatles wrote several tunes that are timeless and will be appreciated by future generations. I see that because almost every Baby Boomer's kid I talk to about music likes their music. Now, they are not as fanatic about the music as the Boomers were, but that's because they didn't grow up in the diatonic wasteland that was Rock prior to 1964. They grew up listening to everything that came after. Still, the appreciation is there.

    I am very impressed with Dowland's Say Love and Come Away, Come Sweet Love. Hundreds of years from now, someone like me will listen to Here, There and Everywhere and think, "Hey, that's pretty good."

    "To lead a better life
    I need my love to be here."
    I wrote a song about dental floss. Did anyone's teeth get cleaner? ~ Frank Zappa

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    Senior Member mikeh375's Avatar
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    I wonder if Penny Lane will be banned from now on.....

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/liverpool/conte..._feature.shtml

    I have associations with the Beatles..sort of. My mother grew up a few doors away from Harrison and she told me that he was always practising piano (I think), in the parlour and didn't play out much. My sister lives just off Penny Lane and me, I've bought the albums twice now and I'm a scouser so watch your posts from now on or I'll berst ya, ooor'right laaa....(especially you Jacck..

    I worked at George Martin's Air Studios a few times and in the foyer is the framed original manuscript for the quartet arrangement of 'Yesterday'. I gawped at it for quite some time and wondered if I could get it under my coat or just grab it and run....(scouser joke).

    btw check out this pianist and her arrangements. She's rather good....

    Last edited by mikeh375; Jul-08-2020 at 13:14.

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    Senior Member SanAntone's Avatar
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    The Beatles were a band I listened to when I was a teenager (I'm 68). It was just what was on the radio, along with a lot of other music I liked just as much. But it didn't take long to realize that they were different, their records got progressively more complex and just better than the music around them. The Beach Boys kept up for a while - and then the Beatles were gone.

    I don't listen to them (or any of that kind of music) hardly anymore, and think of them as a great band from the '60s and leave it at that.

    I am not interested in mythologizing them, like it appears to be the case with the documentary posted (of which I watched the first few minutes, but turned it off as the first YouTube ad kicked in).

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    The Beatles (always include a capitalized "The") were great beings who expressed this through music. We were very lucky to have them.

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    Senior Member Jacck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by millionrainbows View Post
    The Beatles (always include a capitalized "The") were great beings who expressed this through music. We were very lucky to have them.
    Lennon was constantly on LSD, and then he saw tangerine trees and marmalade skies and girls with kaleidoscope eyes

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    I like their songs more than their renditions. I'd rather hear a cover than the original.

    But thinking about them, back in the day, when they got into their hippie period, that style bored me, and that's what got me to seek out other genres, like jazz, then classical. So in that regard, I guess they had a positive impact on me.

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    Senior Member starthrower's Avatar
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    I suppose they are easy to take for granted at this point. But they were hugely influential as far as song stylists and the popularity of album listening. They wrote dozens and dozens of catchy melodies, created interesting arrangements with George Martin, and mostly sound inspired to my ears.
    "In the beginning there was noise. And the noise begat rhythm. And the rhythm begat everything else." - Mickey Hart

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    I consider myself fortunate to have been a young teenager when the Beatles arrived in America. The one Beatles song that always seems to enter my brain spontaneously is Hard Day's Night.

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    Bernstein was a fan:


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    Quote Originally Posted by StevenOBrien View Post
    Bernstein was a fan
    That's back in the day when a classical conductor had to defend pop music. You wouldn't see that on TV today.

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    I forgot to mention in my opening comments that the reason I brought up this topic is that Ringo turned 80 yesterday.

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