Icons of the 60s Part 1 - The Beatles

Icons... is a new feature that I am including in my blog. Each week I will explore a different band/solo artist from various decades, what they did to influence billions and guarantee their status as iconic. Over the next month you can expect to find posts on bands of the 1960's.
Firstly, The Beatles. I am yet to meet somebody who does not know who they are. It's difficult to know where to begin with this band, as they are the most influential of all time and so much has already been said.
The reason why the fab four are the most influential band in history, is because nobody had done what they did before them. For them the sky was the limit, they broke barriers that did not even exist at the time. A standard was formed, one that would continue and expand their legacy (even after half of the group had passed away) and that had the ability to influence countless people/bands generations after they had faded away. 
The Beatles (consisting of John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr) have not faded from the media's focused glare. That's the issue though. The band stopped making music together in 1970, and touring finished for good in 1966, however The Beatles attract new fans everyday. What is it about them that maintains their popularity?
This is the question that has been raised by many. Adam Gopnik commented that "The Fab Four's music endures because it mirrors an era we still long for." I agree with his statement to some extent, however Gopnik suggests that their music has survived as an exclusive scrapbook, which we can never regain. This is what I do not agree with. I believe that their music is just as popular today as it was in the past, because they wrote music centred around universal truths.
The majority of their back catalogue focuses on the idea of 'love'. Even the last couplet of the last song, on the final album they recorded together (Abbey Road) implies that love was the message they were trying to convey all along. "And in the end, the love you take, is equal to the love you make." If you think about it, that's really clever.
The working partnership of John Lennon and Paul McCartney is one that has never been recreated, and I doubt it ever will. Lennon and McCartney were extraordinarily talented men, who originated from the same area but their family lives contrasted heavily. McCartney was born into a loving, caring family full of trust and and friendship, this resulted in Paul more prone to writing happy melodies and joyful lyrics in his later years. Whereas Lennon grew up in a family without his biological parents present (this was not their fault though) and all he craved was a little love and attention. It could be implied that John's childhood woes were reflected in his songs, later in life. However both John and Paul's experiences made for the perfect combination of song content.
The BBC stated that "Art makes us alive and aware and sometimes afraid but it rarely makes us glad. Fifty years on, The Beatles live because they still give us that most amazing of feelings: the apprehension of a happiness that we can hold, like a hand."
This is an accurate observation which I thought would be nice to end on.
Are you a fan of The Beatles? What is it about them that you like? Comment below to get your voice heard.

1 comment:

  1. This post will really help me with my History because we are writing an essay on the 'swinging sixties' and obviously, the Beatles were a big part of the sixties so we have to mention them. :)