The Beatles were an English rock band that formed in Liverpool, in 1960. With John Lennon,
Paul McCartney, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr, they became widely regarded as the greatest
and most influential act of the rock era.
In the early 1960s, their enormous popularity first emerged as "Beatlemania", but as their songwriting grew
in sophistication they came to be perceived as an embodiment of the ideals shared by the era's sociocultural revolutions.
They are the best-selling band in history, with EMI Records estimating sales of over one billion units.
They hold the record for most number-one hits on the Hot 100 chart with 20. They have received 7 Grammy Awards,
an Academy Award for Best Original Score and 15 Ivor Novello Awards.
The Quarrymen, Billy Preston, Plastic Ono Band
Beatles is derived from the word "beat" (1960's beat generation and beat of a song) and Silver added
to the word glitter to get "les"
Early Lest Known Members:
Stuart Sutcliffe: bass, vocals (1960-1961)
Pete Best: drums (1960-1962)
Jimmy Nicol: drums (1964 temporary fill-in)
Lennon first invited McCartney to join his group (The Quarrymen) in 1957 then in February 1958 the young guitarist George Harrison and Ringo Starr was added when they signed their first UK music contract with Abbey Road Studios.
Got Their Start:
As the Quarreymen in the 1950's (McCartney, Lennon, and Harrison the only regulars) then changed names many times (Johnny and The Moondogs, The Silver Beetles, and finally The Beatles). In 1961 "My Bonnie (Mein Herz ist bei dir nur)" became a top 10 hit in Germany.
At a club named The Casbah, created by Mona Best in the basement of her family's home
First Hit Song:
"Love Me Do" which was a minor hit in 1962 (UK) and charted in 1964 (US).
Last concert before paying fans in Candlestick Park in San Francisco on 29 August 1966. The group focused on music for another 4 years before dissolving in 1970.
Murder and Death:
Lennon was murdered by Mark David Chapman, a mentally-ill fan, on December 8th, 1980 and George Harrison died on November 29th, 2001
"Will the people in the cheaper seats clap your hands? And the rest of you, if you'll just rattle your jewelry."
- John Lennon, 1963, at the high point of the group's set during the Royal Variety Performance before members of the British Royal Family.
"We ice skate."
- George Harrison, 1964, when asked by a reporter "What do you do when you're cooped up in a hotel room between shows?"
- John Lennon, 1964, when asked by a reporter "What have you seen that you like best about our country?"
"I don't know, it must be the weather."
- John Lennon, 1964, when asked by a reporter "Why do you think you're so popular all of a sudden?"
"So this is America. They must be out of their minds."
Ringo Starr, circa 1964, arriving in America for the first time.
"I call it Arthur"
- George Harrison, 1964, when asked what the Beatles called their haircuts.
"There's a woman in the United States who predicted the plane we were traveling on would crash. Now, a lot of people would like to think we were scared into saying a prayer. What we did actually--we drank."
- Ringo Starr, 1966
"Christianity will go. It will vanish and shrink. I needn't argue about that. I'm right and will be proved right. We're more popular than Jesus now; I don't know which will go first, rock 'n' roll or Christianity. Jesus was all right, but his disciples were think and ordinary. It's them twisting it that ruins it for me.
- John Lennon, 1966 (This quote sparked quite a large controversy, as many of you might know)
"Look, I wasn't saying the Beatles are better than God or Jesus. I said 'Beatles' because it's easy for me to talk about Beatles. I could have said TV or the cinema, motor cars or anything popular and I would have gotten away with it."
- John Lennon, 1966
"No I wouldn't say that at all."
- John Lennon, 1966, in response to the question "Do you feel you are being cruicified?"
"[LSD] went on for years. I must have had a thousand trips. I used to just eat it all the time."
- John Lennon, 1970
"There's high, and there's high, and to get really high--I mean so high that you can walk on the water, that high--that's where I'm goin'."
- George Harrison, circa 1968
"I hope the fans will take up meditation instead of drugs."
- Ringo Starr, 1967
"It [LSD] opened my eyes. We only use on-tenth of our brain. Just think of what we could accomplist if we could only tap that hidden part! It would mean a whole new world if the politicians would take LSD. There wouldn't be any more war or poverty or famine."
- Paul McCartney, 1967
"I now realize that taking drugs was like taking an aspirin without having a headache.
- Paul McCartney, 1967