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The Beatles | Behind The Band


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vinyleyezz to get 10% off. All right, now today we’re talking about the most famous band of
all time, The Beatles. (upbeat synth music) Hey friends, welcome back. So today we’re doing something completely new on the channel. This is the first episode of a series called Behind The Band. This is where we explore the roots of popular music, learn a
lot of interesting facts, and basically find out how the band became so successful in the first place. So we’re starting off with The Beatles. And although I am by no means an expert, I did do some research and I wanted to share with you guys what I found. Also, if you have a band I
should cover in the future, drop it in the comments down below. All right, so before we dive in, today’s Song of The Day is Penny Lane by, of course, The Beatles. And if YOU have a suggestion
for a Song of The Day as well, post that down below too, and you might see it in a future video. Okay, so here is how The
Beatles, got started. (soft music) John Lennon was born on October 9, 1940 in Liverpool, England,
and after experiencing a difficult childhood,
which lead to the separation of his parents, he found
that he was naturally drawn to the arts, and in particular, he had affinity for music. In fact it was his mother Julia, who was very much a
free-spirit in her own right, who encouraged John’s musical pursuits by playing Elvis Presley records for him, and also teaching him
how to play the banjo. So in 1956, when he was 15 years old, he started a band called The Quarrymen after his high school which was named The Quarry Bank High School. Today it’s known as The
Calderstones School, but I think The Quarry sounded cooler. But anyways, the next year at the band’s second official performance, John met a 15-year-old
named Paul McCartney who was also from Liverpool,
and also into music. So he was invited to join
them as rhythm guitarist and he naturally accepted. The following year in 1958, the group held auditions
for a lead guitarist, and although a young musician
named George Harrison caught their attention, they felt that maybe this kid was too young. He was 14 at the time. However, after a second audition, he finally won them over, and they agreed to let him join the band as well. Over the next few years John Lennon’s Quarry Bank High School
friends left the group, and the band basically became just John, Paul, and George,
and the three of them played at clubs whenever
they could find a drummer. Now, in 1960, Stuart Sutcliffe, who was John’s friend from art school, played bass with the band very briefly, but by the following year, and after some creative differences, he decided to leave the
group to pursue his painting. So finally by 1962 they had John Lennon on lead vocals and rhythm guitar, Paul McCartney on bass, and George Harrison on lead guitar. But the band still
needed to find a drummer, and at first they chose Pete Best, who belonged to a different band that had recently broken up. But then later on they
decided that Ringo Starr, an English musician they had
met while on tour in Hamburg, would be a better fit for the band. So, they finally had their band, but now they had to decide on a name. They felt that The
Quarrymen no longer fit, and they wanted something similar to what Buddy Holly had done
with his band, The Crickets. You know on one and, it’s
a little grasshopper, but it’s also a game in England. So this idea of double meaning
kind of stayed with them. At first they went with The
Beetles, spelled this way. Then in Hamburg The Silver Beetles. Then John changed it to The
Beatals, spelled this way, because it had the word beat in it, and finally they settled on
The Beatles, spelled this way. As John Lennon remarked, quote, “When you said it, people
thought of crawly things; “and when you read it, it was beat music.” (soft music) Now as far as their music is concerned, their first band, The Quarrymen, played skiffle music, which
was a style that blended jazz, blues, and folk music together. And, even though they
walked away from that band, and became The Beatles, they
still kept their skiffle roots, but also branched out
into other genres as well, such as British beat,
classical, psychedelic rock, pop, and even Indian music. So although their official
genre was rock and roll, they liked to experiment and play around with other concepts. Basically, you can’t put them in a box, because their sound is so different. And I think that’s why people
liked them at the time. They were new and they
were fresh and didn’t sound like anyone else out there, and the people were ready for a change. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I’m sure there were some great polka bands
around during that time, but the people wanted rock. They wanted something with
an edge, something wild. They wanted Little Richard,
The Rolling Stones. They wanted the Animals, The Yardbirds, and they wanted The Beatles. Now as far as The Beatles’s
musical influences go, John Lennon and Paul McCartney were both big fans of Buddy Holly. They liked him not only because
he wrote original material, but also because he could
play the guitar very well and sing on stage at the
same time, unlike Elvis, who, according to John Lennon was, quote, “More of a singer than a guitar player, “who wore the guitar
better than he played it.” A little shade there against
The King, but that’s okay. Now, do you remember Stuart Sutcliffe, their former Bass Player
who left the band in 1961? Well before that he was
dating a photographer named Astrid Kirchherr,
who he had met in Hamburg while the band was on tour, and she is the one who’s often credited as inventing The Beatles’s early look, with their signature mop top haircuts, and she was also one of
the first photographers to take high quality photos of the band before they were officially famous. So here’s a couple of
her really cool photos. And these are the earliest
ones in Beatles’s history. Now, in addition to their mop tops, the band also embraced a certain
style in how they dressed. In the early days they
wore leather jackets and kinda looked like greasers, but over time they ditched that in favor of suits and ties and that seemed to fit their image much better. Basically Paul wanted them
to wear matching outfits because then they’d
sort of look like a team and that would help to
establish them as a brand, similar to what a lot of bands do today. In fact if you think about it,
The Beatles might have been one of the first boy bands
in rock and roll history, and they were around long
before those 90’s bands. I mean totally different music, but yeah, never thought I’d make that comparison. (soft music) Now, after a few years of
playing at different clubs, most notably The Cavern Club, where they met their
manager Brian Epstein, their popularity really took off in 1963. During that year they
released several hit singles that people just could not get enough of. Songs like Please Please Me, From Me to You, and She Loves You, were released during this time. And the fan frenzy that
followed was labeled by the press as Beatlemania,
with the band members themselves were being called The Fab Four. So the world was definitely
starting to take notice. They also released the song
I Want to Hold Your Hand the very next year in 1964, and it also became an instant classic as well. Now, their first live performance in front of an American audience happened on February 9, 1964 on
the Ed Sullivan Show. And in addition to many
screaming girls in the audience, 73 million people were watching the performance from their homes, and it was basically the
Superbowl moment of its time. It was a huge deal for the band. And it also kicked off this whole British Invasion of UK Bands coming into the American market. And not only that, but because the US had never seen anything
like this band before, The Beatles immediately
became pop culture icons. All the kids wanted to dress like them and get their hair cut like them, too. So, they were kind of trend
setters of their time. Now after that first performance, they did a short US tour,
where they held shows at The Washington Coliseum
and Carnegie Hall. And then, one week after
that legendary performance on Ed Sullivan, they went back to the show and did another concert,
and 70 million people watched that one as well, so
they got some great exposure. Now over the next several years the band went on to perform at countless other venues and locations
around the world, including a four year
period where they held over 1400 concert appearances
internationally, which is insane. I don’t know how they survived. Now speaking of their music, over the course of their successful career they released dozens of albums
in international markets. So not counting their live albums, EPs, or compilation records, here’s a list of their official studio albums. Please Please Me, With The Beatles, Introducing The Beatles, Meet The Beatles, Twist and Shout, The Beatles Long Tall Sally, A Hard Day’s Night, Something New, Beatles for Sale, Beatles ’65, Beatles VI, Help!, Rubber Soul, Yesterday and Today, Revolver, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, Magical Mystery Tour, The Beatles, also known
as The White Album, Yellow Submarine, Abbey Road, and finally, Let It Be. (soft music) Now, it wasn’t all
sunshine and roses, though. Over the years the band
did have their setbacks. 1966 in particular was a year that was not very kind to The Beatles. Their longtime manager
Brian Epstein passed away, John Lennon made a comment
during an interview that the Beatles were, quote,
“More popular than Jesus,” which did not go over well with
Christians around the world. And even though they
issued a formal apology for that comment, there were
still riots at the time. And also their live
performances were descending into a bit of a circus. So fearing for their safety, they just stopped touring altogether. Basically, they were pretty
exhausted by this point, with the riots and all
the constant touring, and they figured that they
should just be a studio band, and that would kind of allow them to focus more on the music itself. Also in 1966, the cover of
their album Yesterday and Today featured a bizarre photo
of doll parts and raw meat. This has been called the butcher cover. The infamous photo was taken by photographer Robert Whitaker and basically the band was trying to make a statement about the Vietnam War, and the fact that these
large record labels kept butchering their music by rearranging the track orders of albums for
international distributors. But either way, no matter
what they were going for, people just didn’t really get it, and it just didn’t go over well. The following year in 1967 the band recorded their single Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds, and many people, who
were reported as being, like, totally square man,
thought that they were referring to, you know, something else, so this created a slight
media controversy at the time. The following year in 1968 Ringo Starr actually quit the group when they basically told
him his drumming sucked when they were recording The White Album. But then they ended up making amends, and he came back into the studio to find his drum set covered with flowers, which was basically their way
of saying they were sorry. His drumming did not suck. Now, considering all of this drama, the biggest question many people
still have to this day is, did Yoko ruin the band? And the short answer is no, but she didn’t exactly
help the situation either. Let me explain. So during this time when they were having all these setbacks, John Lennon had met Yoko
Ono, fell in love with her, and basically he was spending
a lot of time with her, which the other Beatles
band members didn’t like. They felt that he should be more focused on the music that they were making, and there was sort of a
growing resentment there, which was definitely not
healthy for the band. So all of this came to a
head on September 20, 1969 when John, the guy who had
started this whole thing 13 years earlier, announced to the band, his wife, and his manager that
he was leaving The Beatles. Kind of a bombshell. I guess he was just creatively
frustrated and tired, and felt that the band had run its course, even though the sales of Abby Road were still doing really
great at that time. I think ultimately he just
wanted a change of pace. So although The Beatles broke
up unofficially in 1969, years later in 1975, when
the courts actually dissolved the group, that’s when they
broke up officially and legally. And as far as the biggest tragedy of all, John Lennon’s magnificent candle faded out on December
8, 1980, in Manhattan when his life’s journey was
cut short by a deranged fan. And after his passing,
The Beatles and the world just weren’t the same. Now, regardless of all of this, the fact that we’re still
talking about The Beatles and their records are still being pressed to this day really says a lot. I mean this band has basically
stood the test of time. (soft music) Now as far as the Beatles
Records in my collection I have One, Hey Jude, Yellow Submarine, The Beatles AKA the White Album, Love, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, and Abbey Road. So I’ve listed those records and their other top albums
that you can get on vinyl, in the video description down below. Also, speaking of records, I’d like to show y’all
a really cool record that we got from our sponsor,
Vinyl Moon, a while back. So this is Volume 43 and
it’s called Electric Daze. As you can see it’s on
translucent blue colored vinyl, with a red stripe through the middle, which looks really cool. All the artwork on this particular release was designed by Luke Pelletier, but overall each volume in their catalog is designed by a different artist. So basically no two records
are gonna look the same, and of course the music
itself is also really awesome. So as I said earlier, if you
guys wanna check ’em out, their link will be down below. (soft music) Now, here’s a few interesting facts you may not know about The Beatles. Some of their early band
names included Beatals, Silver Beetles, Beetles, and even Johnny and The Moondogs, with Johnny being John Lennon. Paul McCartney once got arrested in Germany and deported back to the UK after he set a small fire
in a club in Hamburg. George Harrison learned how to
play Sitar with Ravi Shankar. 40 years to the day after John met Paul at St. Peter’s Church,
the original Quarrymen, consisting of the earliest
members of that band, reformed and are still playing
music apparently to this day. And although their website
definitely needs an update, it’s kinda cool that they’re still around. The fifth Beatle was a title that the press applied to people who were, at one time or another, part
of The Beatles entourage. And no one seems to really agree on who the real fifth Beatle
was, but a lot of people seem to think it was Stuart
Sutcliffe, the bass player. In 1966, when things were kind
of winding down for the band, George Harrison found a deeper
connection with Hinduism, meditation, and Eastern religious leaders and kind of became less
interested in The Beatles. Unfortunately, he passed away
in 2001 due to lung cancer. Now although John and George
are no longer with us, Paul McCartney is 77
and still making music, and Ringo Starr is 79
and still making music. That’s pretty cool. (soft music) The Beatles as a whole are the best-selling music act of all time. They’ve sold over 600 million records, tapes, and CDs worldwide,
with over 183 million units in the US alone. They had six diamond albums, which sold over 10 million copies each, 20 multi-platinum albums,
16 platinum albums, and six gold albums over
the course of their career. They founded their own
record company called Apple Records, which is now
a multimedia corporation that continues to oversee
the band’s legacy. They hold the record for
the most number one hits on the Billboard 100 chart and
most singles sold in the UK. They’ve been inducted into the
Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, both as a band and individually. They’ve won seven Grammy Awards, four Brit Awards, and an Academy Award for Best Original Score for the
1970 documentary Let It Be. They’ve spawned countless side projects and other bands such as,
Paul McCartney and Wings, Plastic Ono Band, Traveling Wilburys, and Ringo Starr and His All Starr Band, Starr spelt with two R’s. Also John Lennon’s song Imagine,
which he’s best known for, has become the signature song played every New Year’s Eve in
Time Square since 2005. And finally Time Magazine named them among the 20th century’s 100
most important people, so you could say they’ve
make their mark on the world. Now there’s a lot of other stuff I didn’t talk about in this video because it would have been four hours long and maybe three people would watch it, but hopefully now we at least know a little bit more about
this incredible band, and the impact that they’ve
had on our modern music. So, what do you think about The Beatles? Let us know down in the comments below. And if you love music in general, feel free to smack this red
subscribe button right here and hit the bell notifications so you won’t miss out on the new videos. And most importantly of all friends, have a fantastic day, and
keep spinning that vinyl.

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