Rock and Roll - The Beatles

By: Shruti Vellaturi

How did they change Rock and Roll forever?

In studio recording, they were some of the first to do complete studio albums and not tour. They experimented with new sounds and ideas that many before them had not had the chance to do. They helped and influenced so many people through this; and the way we make music today has been effected by it. For example the group Panic At The Disco is influenced by The Beatles music. They are the only band to have tribute festivals and weeks dedicated to remembering their music and their lives. They are one of the most recognized bands of the day, and according to parents who lived through "Beatlemania" is that they went from being nothing to being number one overnight. That means something. They were 4 musicians that grew together and expanded their talents so greatly they all were able to stand on their own after The Beatles fell apart. There are not many bands out there that can say they have all outstanding musicians; the few that can say that are special.

­What components of the Beatles made them so appealing in the 1960s?

The Beatles were popular because they wrote hundreds of songs in the time that most could only write a few. They also had a gift for knowing what songs would likely be liked and what songs were not up to par. They also were the first artists to basically write their own songs rather than use songs written by song writers, which was the norm at the time. They also were initially careful to avoid controversy. It was only after achieving popularity that any members were willing to express what might be an unpopular opinion. And even then, they were careful not to go overboard. And they always made it a point to not take their popularity for granted. They had humour and likability. And they were willing to experiment with new techniques and unconventional instruments.

The roots of Rock and Roll

Rock and roll music emerged from the wide variety of musical genres that existed in the United States in the first half of the twentieth century, among different ethnic and social groups. Each genre developed over time through changing fashion and innovation, and each one exchanged ideas and stylistic elements with all the others. The greatest contribution came from the musical traditions of America's black population, with an ancient heritage of oral storytelling through music of African origin, usually with strong rhythmic elements, with frequent use of blue notes and sometimes using a call and response vocal pattern. African music was modified through the experience of slavery, and through contact with white musical styles such as the folk ballad, and instruments, such as the Spanish guitar. New styles of secular music emerged among black Americans in the early twentieth century, in the form of blues, ragtime, jazz, and gospel music.

Today, what makes the Beatles still popular?

The Beatles' music is timeless and it inspires each new generation. Their music has been the biggest seller on iTunes and they had the second highest selling album from the last decade, Eminem had the first. Their music is fresh and never grows old. Their music is also highly respected among artists of different styles of music, such as rap, country and even pop. But the most important factor is, their music is new, different, and meaningful. Their music has stood the test of time. It will always be played somewhere at some time. This type of music was good when it first came out because it was new, different, and catchy. Today, it is still catchy and different and brings back a lot of memories for many people.

Top songs

1. "Hey Jude"

2. "A Day in the Life"

3. "Let it Be"

4. "Yesterday"

5. "Here Comes the Sun"

6. "Strawberry Fields Forever"

7. "While by Guitar Gently Weeps"

8. "Eleanor Rigby"

9. "In my Life"

10. "Come Together"


1956: At age 16, John Lennon gathers some Quarry Bank Grammar School friends and forms a band called the Quarrymen.

July 6, 1957: The Quarrymen perform at St. Peter's Woolton Parish Church. Afterwards, Lennon meets Paul McCartney. McCartney is 15 at the time. Soon after this first meeting, John asks Paul to join the Quarrymen.

February 1958: George Harrison joins the Quarrymen. He is 15 years old.

August 1960: Pete Best joins the band as their drummer. The group has once again changed its name, this time to the Beatles. The group travels to Hamburg for the first of five trips there between Aug. 1960 and Dec. 1962. In Hamburg, they perform at clubs such as the Kiaserkeller and Indra. It is during these extended visits to Hamburg that the band finds its sound and identity.

Dec 17, 1960: First British performance as The Beatles, at the Casbah Coffee Club, Liverpool.

June 6, 1962: First recording session at EMI with George Martin as producer.

Oct. 1962: "Love Me Do", their first single as The Beatles, enters the British chart and reaches number 17.

September 1969: John Lennon privately informed the other Beatles that he was leaving the group, but there was no public acknowledgement of the break-up

April 10,1970: Paul McCartney announced that he was quitting the Beatles.