The Beatles Rock!... and Roll

Monica Su - 1 P WHAP Caussey

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How the Beatles Changed Rock and Roll

1. The Beatles raised the bar for teen idol quality.

Before the Beatles arrived in America, the pop scene squeaked along on the charms of a handful of clean-cut, pearly-toothed fellows, mostly from Philadelphia, whose music was as manufactured as their boy-next-door images. These fellows were nice enough, and in some cases even had some talent, but their careers were directed by producers and industry men who turned the gears of the hit-making machine that pop music had become by the early 60s.


2. The Beatles made long hair for men acceptable, even desirable.

Before the Beatles came to America, “Longhairs” was a dismissive way of referring to certain classical musicians, for example, or to beatniks and other bohemians. Long hair was seen as part and parcel of an eccentric artistic temperament, perhaps with a special exemption for religious men from exotic climes who grew their hair and beards devotionally.


3. The Beatles pioneered the music video.

America famously became the first country to have an all-music television network when MTV debuted in 1981. Music video became a hallmark of the 80s, but it had much earlier roots. As you might have guessed, the Beatles were on board pretty early.


4. The Beatles changed the way we experienced our music.

Music listeners are now more likely to buy music over the Internet than in a record store, and when they are more likely to buy one hit song by an artist than an entire album. In some ways, this manner of music-buying harks back to an era before the arrival of the Beatles, when all resources were focused on the production of a hit song. A song would be recorded, released on a 78 or 45 r.p.m. single, and people would buy it or not buy it. If they bought it, it would become a hit. The Beatles in their early days thrived because their singles were almost always hits. In April 1964, a mere two months after their landfall in America, Beatle songs occupied the top five positions on the Billboard Top 100 chart.

Why Were The Beatles So Popular? (1960s)

The Beatles were an English rock band, formed in Liverpool in 1960. With members John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr, they became widely regarded as the foremost and most influential act of the rock era.

In a nutshell, the lyrics were catchy, the tunes were smooth, guitar and bass riffs were ahead of their time, harmonies were distinctive and spot on, and their personalities captivated everyone.

They did everything first, brilliantly, and were a collective genius who for around ten years altered music forever. Every single step of the way, they were original and unique to a degree that the genre had never seen before and has never has seen since. They were a cultural supernova and they placed their songs, melodies, lyrics and discordant miracles into the collective imagination of the entire world.

Roots of Rock and Roll

Rock and roll is a form of popular music that emerged in the United States in the late 40s' and early 50s'. But rock and roll's roots can be tracked back centuries to drum beats in Africa and Celtic folk music in Europe. As people from these regions immigrated to America, they brought their music with them, and as they were exposed to each other's music, they began to incorporate different styles.

The more immediate roots of rock and roll lay in the so-called "race" music, or rhythm & blues, and "hillbilly" music, or county & western of the Forties and Fifties. Other significant influences include blues, jazz, gospel, boogie-woogie, folk and bluegrass.

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What Makes The Beatles Still Popular Today

The Fab Four's music endures because it mirrors an era we still long for. The Beatles' gift was for harmony, and their vision was above all, harmony. And harmony, voices blending together in song, is still our strongest symbol of a good place yet to come. Their music is undoubtedly good. 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. I, myself, listen to Here Comes the Sun from the album Abbey Road.

TOP 10 Greatest Hits

  1. A Day in the Life
  2. Strawberry Fields Forever
  3. Abbey Road

  4. While My Guitar Gently Weeps

  5. In My Life

  6. Let It Be

  7. Something

  8. Penny Lane

  9. I Want to Hold Your Hand

  10. Ticket to Ride

Click Below to Hear The Beatles' Number 1 Hit

The Beatles- A Day in the Life

Timeline of Events

  • 1960 - The Beatles debut in Hamburg, West Germany.
  • 1961 - The Beatles perform at Liverpool's Cavern Club for the first time.
  • 1963 - The Beatles' first album, Please Please Me, is released in England.
  • 1964 - "I Want to Hold You Hand," by the Beatles, tops Billboard singles chart for 7 weeks.
  • 1964 - The Beatles kick off first US tour with a sold-out show at the Coliseum Theater in Washington, D.C.
  • 1975 - The Beatles' formal legal dissolution takes place in London.