The Beatles/Talk

< The Beatles

HomePage | Recent changes | View source | Discuss this page | Page history | Log in |

Printable version | Disclaimers | Privacy policy

"....the band was on the verge of splitting by the release of [[[/The]] White Album]?, with many tracks recorded by the band members individually." This was not the way I remember it described in a biography I read of John Lennon, or in a book I skimmed through which had the lyrics in English on one page and in Spanish on the opposite page, with bits of trivia scattered throughout. Each of those said that by that time, most of the tracks were recorded with two of the four, and none of them with only Lennon and McCartney. The biography said that Lennon and McCartney did record together, along with George and Ringo, when Eric Clapton came in to perform lead guitar for "While My Guitar Gently Weeps"--the other Beatles weren't taking the song seriously, and Harrison brought Clapton in so they'd shape up. (Clapton performed a similar trick for The Cream's "Badge.") This avoidance of each other was continued through the rest of the recording, but by the time of Abbey Road it was done by each member recording his part individually and the bits being tracked together at the end. Anyway I would just put all this in the main entry except I can't find those two books to verify (I read them in 1994). If someone else can (or can verify by some other source), then by all means go ahead. --Koyaanis Qatsi

What was the quote John Lennon's about Jesus? I'm pretty sure it was "bigger than Jesus," not "more popular." I can't track it down, however.... -- PaulDrye

The full quote is:
Christianity will go. It will vanish and shrink. I needn't argue about that, I'm right and will be proved right. We're more popular than Jesus Christ now. I don't know which will go first, rock n roll or Christianity. Jesus was all right, but his disciples were thick and ordinary. Its them twisting it that ruins it for me. (London Evening Standard, March 4, 1966) GWO

"Also note: The early Beatles albums were originally released as monaural recordings. They were later remastered as artificial stereo with vocals on one side and music on the other side, much to the disgust of fans. The CD's of those early albums restored the original mono."

--None of mine did, including Sgt Pepper's and Abbey Road; I had them all except Beatles for Sale and The Yellow Submarine, but I bought them in the early 90s so the mastering on them may have changed. It wasn't obvious when listening to them on a small CD player, but it was on one with the speakers on separate sides of the room. I'm not sure I felt disgust so much as incomprehension.

Listening to "Baby you can drive my car" off Rubber Soul now, I hear Paul, rhythm guitar, the bass, and the drum set and tambourines (but not the cowbell) on the left, and John, George, piano, a cowbell, and lead guitar on the right. Oh, and the bass is on the right too, but not nearly as loudly as on the left.

Rubber Soul was recorded in stereo, and I don't count it as an early album

"I'm looking through you" has rhythm guitar, Paul's lower registers on vocals, drums, tambourines, and bass on the left; Paul's higher registers and John are on the right, as well as the handclaps and lead guitar; the bass is there too but not loudly. So but since maybe you don't consider Rubber Soul an early album (and certainly no one thinks Sgt. Pepper's and Abbey Road are), I've put on Please Please Me. I'm seeing the same thing there but to a much lesser extent; it's still the case that it's in artificial stereo: the lower registers are on the left; the higher are on the right, though it's not as dramatic as on the other, with certain instruments only being on one side. I think that statement about restoration to mono should be greatly qualified. That is, it is the case that at least some early printings of the CDs had the grievously artificial stereo, and that after complaint it was reduced to a moderately bad stereo. Maybe that's what you meant all along? --KQ

I can't speak for other countries, but the UK CDs are now actual, genuine mono. Maybe elsewhere they still use the reprocessed masters GWO

Do you consider Help! an early one? "It's Only Love" has the bass on the left but not the right and the lead guitar on the right but not the left. I'm not trying to be difficult, I'm just trying to understand. Maybe I should leave the revision of it in your hands; I'm becoming a bit confused about how to phrase it both accurately and concisely. --KQ

This article doesn't mention much about the actual music and why it was such a popular and critical success. A few comments on the Beatles' charismatic nature (particularly on television), "Beatlemania", their innovative videoclips would be good. Not to mention, of course, their catchy early material (compare "Please Please Me" to other stuff in the pop charts at the time) and the musical experimentation (particularly their use of non-conventional rock instruments and studio trickery with the help of George Martin) of their later works. What do people think?

Add it all in.  :-) --KQ

I changed the following sentence: "(a largely accidental echo of later boy bands in which members were selected for their ability to project a particular personality and image),"
1: any "echo" of something that comes later will be entirely accidental, not largely so.
2: you can't "echo" something that comes later, only something that came before.

I added some paragraphs in an attempt to explain the cultural and musical significance of the Beatles. If someone thinks I am giving too much credit to them for some of the changes that I attributed to them, they can offer a correction, but I felt like the Beatles had a great significance that needed some exposition.

No, from my (admittedly historical, I wasn't there at the time) perspective, I think you make some good points. However, they were by no means the first self-contained rock band. Perhaps their example established it as the norm, though. --Robert Merkel