The Beatles Essay

This essay has a total of 1492 words and 10 pages.

The Beatles






The Beatles


When people hear the name "The Beatles" most people think of lead
singer, John Lennon. However, the role of Paul McCartney is often
overlooked. It was McCartney, not Lennon who was the driving force behind
the Beatles.
John Lennon and Paul McCartney were in many bands together before
the forming of the Beatles. In 1962, along with Ringo Starr1 and George
Harrison, they formed the rock group known as "The Beatles". The group
featured a modern rock that was new and popular during the period with John
and Paul composing and doing the leads on most of the songs. They were
backed by George on rhythm and bass guitar and Ringo on drums. George and
Ringo also assisted on backing vocals.
When they first began playing, the main influence inside the band was
John Lennon, who had an uncanny ability to compose songs at a moments
notice with an inspiration that others missed. He pushed the members of the
band during their touring years and was able to achieve the best possible
results from the group.
The band began playing in a Music Hall style that is very effective
for the audiences but was lacking on their albums. Together with Paul, John
began to evolve the band. As the years began to pass, the band was
obviously beginning to grow musically. They had moved from simple lyrics
like "Love me Do" to harshly aware reflections of life in their home
country in "Eleanor Rigby"2. There were attempts, some more successful than
others, to incorporate the other Beatles into the idea stage. George
Harrison made this leap successfully with such tracks as "I want to tell
you", "TAXMAN", and the psychedelic "Love you to". Ringo was featured in
the humorous "Yellow Submarine" As the group matured, their creativity
began to rely more on the effects and manipulations that they were able to
produce in the studio. The Beatles agreed to end their touring career after
an American tour of large halls that they failed to fill. It was around
this time, that John Lennon began to search for himself. He began using any
means that he thought might help him connect. This era was marked by the
Beatles visits to the Maharashi Mahesh Yogi, and the beginning of heavy
drug use 3. As Lennon began to use LSD in greater and greater quanti-ties4,
the other Beatles began to have more and more influence in the production
of the albums. Lennon began to become almost reclusive, and often delayed
recording sessions.By the time that they were recording Sgt. Pepper's
Lonely Hearts Club Band in 1967, Lennon would simply propose songs and
themes, and McCartney was left to execute the plans and tie together whims.
They began to make demands of the crew:Beatles songs were quite simple in
the early days, you couldn't play around with them too much. But by 1967 we
were building sound pictures and my [George Martin] role had changed-it
was to interpret the pictures and determine how best to get them down on
tape. Paul was fine-he could express what he wanted, the sounds he wa nted
to have. But John...would make whooshing sounds and try to describe what
only he could only hear in his head, saying he wanted a song to 'sound like
an orange'.5 As soon as the Sgt. Pepper album was underway, Paul McCartney
came up with the idea of actually creating a band and preforming the songs
as that band. They took the Idea from there and Sgt. Pepper's Lonely
Heart's Club Band came into existence, never to see the outside of studio 2
at Abbey Road. They spent nearly a year recording various tracks for the
album and John's state of mind was steadily declining. In 1969 when they
issued Abbey Road it was no longer difficult to distinguish between the
writings of Paul and John . John was producing works like "I want you
(she's so heavy)" which had the lyrics:

I want you so bad it's driving me mad
She's so heavy6

And the more musical and thoughtful work of McCartney, such as "Golden
Slumbers" which was almost a lullaby:

Once there was a way to get back homeward
Once there was a way to get back home
Sleep pretty darling do not cry
And I will sing a lullaby
Golden slumbers fill your eyes
Smiles awake you when you rise Sleep pretty darling do not cry
And I will sing a lullaby7

The writing of the material on The Beatles8 seemed more balanced as Lennon
began writing more cogent songs, and collaborating on a song-by-song basis
with McCartney. Their songs varied from a slow ballad in McCartney's
"Blackbird" to the bizarre and intriguing "Revolution #9) by Lennon. Yet
McCartney was needed to control Lennon when he recorded the original
version of "Sexie Sadie" with the verse:

You little twat
Who the *censored* do you think you are
Who the *censored* do you think you are
Oh, you cunt.9

Fortunately McCartney prevented the track from proceeding any farther than
rehearsal. He ended up suggesting that the song take a more sympathetic
note and, eventually, Lennon agreed. During this time, one almost constant
presence in the recording studio was Yoko Ono, John's wife. This was
against an unspoken code amongst the Beatles not to allow wives and
girlfriends into the studio. Yoko had a large affect on John, almost
completely altering his style, and inspiring such songs as "I want her
(she's so heavy)" and "Revelation #9". Many of the other songs that Yoko
and John created were rejected by the group, but her presence changed
John's behavior and performance. The Beatles final album together was Let
It Be released in 1970. The album was not in any way spectacular and
exhibited many of the traits that are associated with the Beatles writing.
The title track, "Let It Be" is one of the most famous tracks recorded by
the group. The music on the album was a last chance effort to keep the
group together, and although the album was well received, it was not what
the group had in mind. The Beatles did not make another recording after
that date, though there were rumors of the group reforming until the
shooting of Lennon in 1980.
One of the most obvious indicators of the heavy hand that was often
kept on Lennon is the progress of his band which he formed after the
Continues for 5 more pages >>




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