Tuesday, March 4, 2014

The Beatles • In the Beginning

The Beatles 1961 photo TheBeatles1961_zps9d2a84a5.jpg
Left to right:Paul McCartney, John Lennon, Pete Best, and George Harrison.

In 1961, Tony Sheridan and the Beat Brothers released a recording of "My Bonnie", a modern take on the Scottish folk favorite, "My Bonnie Lies Over the Ocean". What makes this to be something of interest to most people is the fact that the Beat Brothers were not always known by that name. Soon they would become famous world-wide as The Beatles. John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison, and Pete Best played with Tony Sheridan, an English Rock 'N Roller on an album, most notably the Scottish tune. The song did well on the British charts, and also went to #26 on the US Billboard Hot 100 when released in 1964.The album was a combination of Rock classics, Blues favorites, and some traditional Folk songs. But the star of the lot was "My Bonnie", by Tony Sheridan and featuring the Beat Brothers.

While the song started out like a traditional Folk take on the song, it soon became a Rock song, influenced by Americans like Buddy Holly and the Crickets. You can find "My Bonnie" on the album 'The Beatles: In the Beginning Featuring Tony Sheridan', available on iTunes and Amazon.

The Beatles 1962 photo TheBeatles-1962_zpsc70c72c8.jpg
Left to right:Ringo Starr, George Harrison, John Lennon, and Paul McCartney.

It was not long before the Beat Brothers had hooked up with manager Brian Epstein, changed their name to The Beatles, and set about recording their own music. In 1962, the band released their first single, which also happened to be the first of their songs penned by Lennon and McCartney. "Love Me Do" was met with some success, especially considering it was their first ever. And when it was re-released in 1964, the song went to #1 on the US Billboard Hot 100. This is John, Paul, George and new drummer Ringo Starr singing "Love Me Do".

The song on the B-side of "Love Me Do" was another track written by Lennon and McCartney, already showing the way the two boys from Liverpool were taking over Pop music. "PS I Love You" was also met with much praise, and had a life of it's own. While not meant as a single early on, the song did go to #10 on the US Billboard Hot 100 in 1964. The simple love song charmed it's way into be a favorite fo many Beatles fans around the world. Interestingly enough, record producer George Martin was not sold on Ringo, and brought in drummer Andy White to play on this track, while Starr shook the maracas. While Martin remained unsure, once the fans and the other members of the band got behind him, Ringo found his place. This is The Beatles singing "PS I Love You".

Needless to say, this was just the start of an incredible journey of four boys from Liverpool, England. It wasn't long before they were ruling the world of music. On February 9, 1964, The Beatles appeared on 'The Ed Sullivan Show', and the screaming girls in the audience were signals that music was never going to be the same again. Until they broke up in 1970, the band topped the charts and proved John Lennon to be correct when he suggested that the Beatles were 'more popular than Jesus Christ'. You can purchase "Love Me Do" and "PS I Love You" on the album 'The Early Beatles' from iTunes.

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