The Beatles Term Paper

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The Beatles

There has been more books published about one 20th-century icon than any

other, this band that is said to have broken down barriers in all ways, is the

Beatles. Their music was said to have driven that younger generation mad.

Perhaps it was because they were one of the first bands ever play real rock and

roll music. Or maybe it was just because they were foreigners in the world of music, yet seemed to fit right in with the young people. Whatever reason was, the Beatles were a band that shaped a generation and ones soon to come.

The Beatles were more than just a rock and roll band, they were a group of

young men who wanted to go a new direction in music. John Lennon, one of lead

vocalists, basically started with the intention of moving away from the

"Skiffle Boom Era" which was dominating the time (Buskin 110). In his doing so, he began to lay the foundation for what would later be the most famous rock band ever. The

original band members were as follows : John Lennon, vocals and guitar ; Paul

McCartney, vocals ; George Harrison, guitar ; Pete Best, drums ; Stuart

Sutcliffe, bass guitar.(Martin 23)

In March of 1961, the Beatles began to play at the club that would

later be nicknamed "The Home of the Beatles". The Cavern Club, which's premises

comprised a small group of cellars below a seven story warehouse which had

originally been used as an air raid shelter during the war. Later, Alan Sytner,

a jazz fan decided to open it up as a new jazz club. After a few years, he sold

it to Ray McFall another jazz fan. The club was originally strictly jazz and no

rock. Luckily for the Beatles, the times were changing and McFall quickly

changed the policy the Beatles soon became regulars. This would be the club

that would make them famous.(Davies 78)

News of the band's Liverpool popularity soon became know throughout England

and later a large part of Europe. Shortly after their first tour of Hamburg,

Stuart, who had always been a better artist than musician left the band to

pursue goals in the visual arts field. Paul had dabbled in bass guitar and took

his place. This was a transition period for the members in the band, they were

going from being Liverpool locals to being English stars. It was about this

time that the rest of the band and their manager Brian Epstien, began to notice

Pete's growing ego, and thought it would be best if he weren't in the band. (Buskin 219)

Many fans were surprised and upset at the decision. When they heard Ringo

Starr one of the back up drummers, was joining they were calmed perhaps in

anticipation of hearing how the new member would fit in with the rest of the

band (Spizer 45). The result was fabulous. The band was pleased with their new addition and they quickly adapted to each others playing styles. Ring was the final member to

join the band and in October of 1962, just a few months after Ringo joined the

band, the Beatles had their first hit single, Love Me Do .

1963 and 1964 proved to be the most important years for the Beatles. During

1963 they created a sensation in Britain. The boys appeared on Sunday Night at

the London Palladium and a writer for the Daily Mirror coined the phrase

Beatlemania, it later became the word people used to describe the outpour of

Beatle fans. With in months the Beatles had gone from being opening acts at

concerts to starring on the Royal Variety Show (Spizer 234). The reasons for their success were uncanny. During the "baby boom", more children were born in England than any other time in history. During the time of the Beatles popularity, most of

these babies were teenagers and they wanted more freedom than their parents had

been given.

1964 was the absolute most important year of their careers. 1964 was the

year they conquered the biggest record market of the world, America. It took a

combination of talent and luck. America was suffering with the loss of John F.

Kennedy and the Beatles appeared on the scene to bring them fun and excitement

to end their mourning. They also brought rock and roll back to its homeland.

Being in right place at the right time seemed to favor the Beatles. On a flight

back home from Sweden, they ran into Ed Sullivan who invited them to come on

his show. Although the Beatles were not an over night success, they shot for their

goals and eventually reached them and others. The band stayed together for many

years and made a generation of young kids into a generation envied by others

for having the Beatles to wait for and want. Their music still influences many

artists and will continue to do so as they were and still are the band that

will "rock on forever".


Buskin, Richard. The Complete Idiots Guide To the Beatles. New York: Alpha Books, 1998

Marvin, Martin. The Beatles. New York: Franklin Watts, 1996

Davies, Hunter. The Beatles. Chicago: W.W Norton and Company, 1996

Norman, Philip. Shout! The Beatles in their Generation. New York: Fireside, 1996

Spizer, Livingston. The Beatles Story on Capitol Records. New York: 498 Productions, 2000

Word Count: 841

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