THE BEATLES

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Becaud Gilbert

BIOGRAPHY:
In spite of the brevity of their career as a group, Beatles are the inventors of the "pop music", the pioneers who opened the way with all musical research of the years 1970. Before them, the popular music was partitioned in distinct kinds (rock'n'roll, folk, jazz, blues); after them, one will speak about pop music like musical language complexes, influenced by the rock'n'roll, the folk, the classical music and even, in the case of Beatles, by the Indian music. They are moreover, with Bob Dylan and Rolling Stones, the only pop musicians having reached of their alive dimension of a myth.

Like they, but in a more subtle way, they incarnated the revolt of the youth of the years 1960 against the good conscience and the conformism of an incipient consumer society. They are also, with Dylan, the first type-setters pop to have granted as much importance to the texts of their songs.
Born in the proletariat from Liverpool, Beatles begin in badly famed night clubs where to manage to them, Brian Epstein, discovers them. They record in 1962 their first album "Please Please", mingling Me with old success of the rock'n'roll with original compositions of Lennon and McCartney.

Success is not made wait; the group has an exceptional charisma, which is due to the strong personality of each one of its members:

John Lennon (1940-1980): guitarist, is the intellectual of the group, with the caustic spirit;
Paul McCartney (born in 1942): the bass player, is the most gifted musician;
George Harrison (1943-2001): excel guitarist solo, is a "mystic" who will initiate his friends with the Eastern religions
Richard Starkey, known as Ringo Starr (born in 1940): the beater, brings to the group its drolery and its good mood.

In the years 1963-1965, albums and triumphal rounds follow one another: "With the Beatles" (1963); "A Hardware Day' S Night" (1964); "Beatles for Salts" (1964); "Help" (1965); the originality of Beatles bursts already in these first discs: they are love songs, with the tinted romanticism of humour, without vulgarity nor insipidness. The diversity of the melodies and the rates/rhythms, the interpretation of Lennon and McCartney, the plaintive agreements of the guitar of Harrison, all that contributes to a success without precedent: each public appearance of the group causes riots.

Beatles are tested with the cinema ("A Hardware Day' S Night" and "Help! "To ballast), make the conquest of Europe and of the United States, their songs recorded by other artists see and are choked little by little by the success which insulates them: "Help!" is a cry of alarm, and Beatles start to find a loophole in drugs.

1965 and 1966 are years hinges, those of two complex albums: "Rubber Soul" (1965) and "Revolver" (1966), whose sound quality is sophisticated than that of the precedents, which were satisfied to reproduce the sound in the concerts. Rare instruments are used (flute, harpsichord, zither). Harrison draws from his electric guitar a expressivity ever reached hitherto. With these two discs, Beatles create truly the pop music. The words of their songs become mysterious and serious; Lennon gives free course to a poetic vocation surréalisante.

Such a complexity, such a musical refinement cannot be reproduced on scene, and Beatles decide to be devoted exclusively to work in studio which will occupy the years 1967-1970. In 1967 "Sergeant Pepper' S Lonely Hearts Club Band appears", their chief-of œuvre: it does not act more than one collection of songs, but of what Lennon will describe as pop will opera, the first conceptual album of the history pop music in which the pieces are separated by no idle period and the musical topics is taken again of vis-a-vis with the other; recorded in six months, this album is of an extraordinary musical richness: the reasons inspired by the Indian music are neighbourly with the pieces which require a philharmonic orchestra; the songs swarm with mystical allusions, of visions entraperçues under the effect of strong drugs. The song "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds", most beautiful of Lennon, bathes in an environment in Lewis Carroll.

1967 are also the year of "All you Need is Love", anthem with the love which starts with the first agreement of the Marseillaise and who remains the song headlight of a whole generation. Beatles will then record still five important albums: "Magical Mystery Turn" (1967: it is the music of a film which they carry out under the same title); the album éponyme "The Beatles" (1968); "Yellow Submarine" (1969); "Abbey Road" (1969), still pop will opera, and "Let it Be" which leaves in 1970 (a film of the same name shows the tended environment which reigned inside the group at the time of the recording of the disc).

In 1970, Beatles separate, the musical personalities of each one having become too divergent. Lennon launches out in the committed song and will still give albums headlights of the years 1970 ("Plastic Ono Band" in 1970; "Imagines" into 1971) before assassinatebeing assassinated in New York in 1980; Continuous McCartney to finick melodies enchanters and melts the group Wings ("Band one the Run" in 1973; "Tug of War" in 1982); Harrison devotes himself to the Hindu religions and introduces in Europe the sect of Krishna; its discs always make shows bright gifts of guitarist ("All Things Must Pass" in 1970; "Extra Texture" in 1975); while Ringo Starr records albums of varieties which have sometimes the merit to join together other Beatles ("Ringo" into 1973).

All the four unit, Beatles had genius: separately they are - Lennon put aside, the most authentic poet of the four - less original. But them œuvre collective remains always also new and rich: it opened the way with all the groups of the years 1970 (Pink Floyd, Genesis, Yes) or 1980 (Police force, Pretenders) and symbolizes more than ever unconcern and the creativity of the "sixties".

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