Friday, June 01, 2007

Another Blast From The Past

While the long awaited reunion of the band the Police had people salivating for the nostalgic sound produced by the original members. But, it apparently has been an utter disaster, as told by their drummer.

Years ago, there were rumors of the single most influential rock band ever, getting back together for one last concert. However, the hopes would always be dashed and the rumor would remain just that, a cruel rumor. And as we see from the disappointing nature of the Police tour, maybe it was just as well. Maybe some things are best left alone to history. Now, they will forever be etched into our memories, as they were then, when they were on top of their game.

So this weekend's "walk down memory lane" features the one, the only, The Beatles (as we all remember them):

Early on in the record industry, the B-side of a hit song on 45 was usually a weak song that very few would listen to. But, the Beatles had the unusual ability to turn their "Side B's of a 45, into a hit (if only a minor one). One of the early flip side songs that was decent was Side 2 of "Can't Buy Me Love". Here's "You Can't Do That":

As their career progressed, they evolved as musicians and songwriters. But instead of them evolving with musical trends, they greatly influenced and to some degree created those trends. Their early style was influenced by rock and roll greats like Buddy Holly and Elvis, but when the album Rubber Soul came out in 1965, it was discovered that these guys had the ability to change the face of rock music forever. Not only could they twist and shout the night away, they were found to be some of the greatest balladeers around.

Songs like Michelle and Norwegian Wood redefined the rock and roll genre, so much that they now had their own distinctive sound, one that would influence the entire genre of folk music, for years to come. One of their all-time greatest ballads was a tune off of the follow-up to Rubber Soul, 1966 album - Revolver. Here's the ever so poignant, Eleanor Rigby:

As the Beatles changed the face of music, each became a consummate artist in his own right. As is common in human nature, it became more of a competition to feature each member's work. So, the band began to have trouble. Some said it was Yoko Ono that broke up the Beatles, others blamed Paul because he was the first to officially announce his departure. But, I rather think it was a combination of things.

The fact was, they had become so big and so successful that they were all losing money by being together. The only real option was to break up and go solo. By doing that, they would not only have all of the spoils to themselves, they could realize the artistic freedom that only came with being a solo artist.

But before they broke up, they gave us an album with probably the greatest two songs ever, in the history of music (not rock music, but music). Both were intended to be a healing message to all of their fans that had been with them for so many years, and had looked forward to every new release with avid enthusiasm. They knew how disappointed we all would be at their split. So for one last defining swan song moment, they gave us Let It Be and The Long And Winding Road:

Enjoy and have a great weekend.

Mary Ellen has a Beatles tune up at her site. Check it out too.


Mary Ellen said...

Wow...that first video (was that from the Ed Sullivan Show?) brought back memories. My older brother was a huge fan of The Beatles when they first came out and I remember him playing the 45 record "She Love You" over and over again. He bought me a "John Lennon hat" back then, too. I was the coolest kid on the block, thanks to him!

Thanks LA

I also did a Beatles tribute on my blog this weekend...great minds think alike, eh?

LASunsett said...

I think the first video was supposed to be in "A Hard Day's Night", but was cut. Now, do not take that as gospel. I just think I read that somewhere.

Mary Ellen said...

Thanks for the plug, LA. I've been having so much fun playing around with YouTube and looking at all the Beatles videos. I think I'll be listening to the White Album tonight.

LASunsett said...

No problem ME.

Here's an interesting tidbit:

Years ago I read an article where someone stated their belief that had Abbey Road been released a few months earlier, maybe the sick and twisted crimes committed by the Manson family MAY have been prevented. The White Album was more revolutionary and therefore had a more demented influence on those whackos, whereas Abbey Road had a more peaceful theme.

I am not sure I buy it, but it is food for thought.

Mary Ellen said...


Ahhhh....sounds like a good subject for a post. Does music influence our history? ;-)

BEING HAD said...

Great post. I pay for my internet by the megabite so it was an expencive look, but totally worth it.

LASunsett said...


//I pay for my internet by the megabite so it was an expencive look, but totally worth it.//

Knowing how this probably set you back, I am glad you enjoyed it, sir.