Thursday, October 11, 2012

Newsflash: The Beatles were a pretty good band.

My record player got disconnected somehow, and since the plug-in is behind a huge bookshelf that is stacked to the ceiling with books (as I mentioned recently, threatening to fall over and crush me), I have resorted to playing music on my laptop.

I go to Youtube and just select an artist and play their "Top" songs:  Springsteen, The Clash, Bob Dylan, whatever.

Anyway, I went through 100 Beatles songs the other day, and I was just struck again by their genius.

I think it was hearing the mix of great songs from different eras.  The sheer breadth of their lyrical and melodic genius.

What really stands out are the one-ups: songs that don't sound like anything else they did and yet are better than anyone else.  Songs that don't sound like anything done before or since.

I know there are people who profess a dislike of the Beatles -- especially younger folk who are probably tired of having them shoved down their throats. 

I forgive them.  Either they haven't listened enough.

Or they have faulty wiring, somewhere.

Anyway, just a reminder.

The Beatles -- they were pretty good.


Anonymous said...

Duncan when the Beatles stated you were 11 or 12. When they ended you were maybe 18. Their heyday was 64 thru 66 based one number of number one songs. My point is they were good but i am not sur they rate such devotion as there were many other great groups. Yet most really like them now, bit many thought they were good but not the greatest when they were together. Zoomie

Martha said...

High five, Duncan.

Anonymous said...

Still waiting for your reaction to Bulletin layoffs.

H. Bruce Miller said...

You might enjoy Pandora and/or Spotify.

Duncan McGeary said...

I've been disappointed in Pandora.

I want to spread out from the beginning choices, into more adventurous music and it seems to do the opposite.

It trends more and more toward mainstream stuff.

So I can start off with, say, The Clash, and somehow end up getting Elton John and Jackson Brown.

Start off with The Beatles, and you get Lawrence Welk, I swear.

H. Bruce Miller said...

You have to "teach" Pandora what you want to have in your playlists by rejecting songs you don't like and giving the thumbs up to those you do. Otherwise, I think you're right -- it does tend toward the bland.

Duncan McGeary said...

Yeah, but you can never stop telling Pandora, which gets old.

Li'l Ned said...

Have to agree with you on the Beatles. They were unique and brilliant. Oftentimes we 'classically-bent' musicians dis rock/pop music as consisting of nothing more than three (tops) chords and a drummer, with maybe someone who can actually carry a tune, but not required. True, a lot of it is just that. But the Beatles .... man, they were something special. When I work with a student on learning a Beatles song, I am just amazed at their wide-ranging harmonies, rhythmic invention and (not uniquely) wonderful lyrics. In the early years, all the music coming out of England and the States sounded new to our ears -- just emerging from the '50's. But in the 40+ years since, a lot of musical sludge has passed under the bridge, and their music shines out all the more brightly in contrast to what is left of their contemporaries. In 40 more years, I predict, people will still listen to and love the Beatles. Can't say I believe the same about most of their contemporaries.

L. Ottaviano said...

Just returned from 3 weeks in England, part spent in Liverpool - went to the Cavern Club where The Beatles used to play, drank a pint and sang along with the crowd while the guitarist played Beatles songs. Requested "Yellow Submarine" b/c our daughter was too shy to do it.
Almost every taxi we rode in was playing The Beatles on the radio, no joke. It was almost cliche. (Apparently our trip coincided with a 50th anniversary of one of their milestones, which could have played into it.)