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Author Topic: The Story of the Beatles' Last Song  (Read 255 times)

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Moogmodule

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The Story of the Beatles' Last Song
« on: January 29, 2015, 05:24:10 AM »

Just read the short book by James Woodall which uses the recording of  I Want You as the backdrop for a look at the Beatles break-up.

At only 90 pages in print (I picked it up for a couple of dollars on kindle) it's easily finished in one sitting. As the hook of the book is I Want You it's predictably pretty "John heavy". I must admit in all the Beatle books and biographies I tire a bit of all the descriptions of John and Yoko's antics in 68 and 69. You'd think the other three Beatles were under ice in between John's comings and goings.

There's not a lot new in it. But the writer suggests that I Want You is evidence that the Beatles, if they'd remained together, would have continued to push sonic boundaries. Including into electronic music. An interesting if unprovable idea.

One quote by Derek Taylor I don't think I've ever seen before is that he never hated anyone, in that period when Apple was consuming itself, more than he hated Paul. Referring to Paul's imperious but clueless micro management of Apple.

Anyway. A short read so no real burden on anyone's time. He does note that the fascinating financial machinations of the sale and purchase of Northern Songs probably needs to wait til Mark Lewisohn's final book to be told in full.
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oldbrownshoe

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Re: The Story of the Beatles' Last Song
« Reply #1 on: January 29, 2015, 06:13:37 PM »

The Beatles would have probably embraced all that the 1970s had to offer.
That's why I thank the Lord above every day that they split up when they did!

Imagine a picture of the four of them in the mid-70s, they'd have looked awful.
The Stones and The Who did, and when the always sharp Small Faces reformed around the same time they did as well.
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Mr Mustard

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Re: The Story of the Beatles' Last Song
« Reply #2 on: January 30, 2015, 10:10:32 PM »

obs, I'm sure The Beatles would indeed have embraced whatever was doing the rounds in the 70s, just as they did in the 60s. They were unashamed jackdaws who pinched a bit from here, borrowed a bit from there, so receptive to the climate they found themselves in and so eclectic in their cherry-picking.

That, I feel sure, would have continued in the 70s...but the main thing I think you're overlooking is that the 70s would have been much different - I think for the better - had The Beatles stayed together. Don't forget they always returned tenfold what they drew from their peers. They would I believe unarguably have remained a (perhaps still THE) major driving force on the music scene. And their instinctive quality control, as we all know, was second to no one's.

So I really do think that you wouldn't be regarding the 70s as so naff had a united Beatles been a part of it. A Beatles influenced/driven 1970s would have been a cool decade (I still think it was great anyway, but you get what I'm saying).

I know you've pointed out before how much they needed the 60s and how everything just couldn't have dovetailed together so perfectly for them in any other decade. True. But their huge talents and awesome chemistry - IF it had manifested elsewhen - would, I am confident, have registered hugely on some sort of level, they really were that good. And I will always maintain that they rescued the 60s from being as crap as the 50s (let's face it, there was some great 50s stuff but lots of tripe, as with any era really). So much of what made the 60s great would not have happened without the direct presence and influence of The Beatles.
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oldbrownshoe

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Re: The Story of the Beatles' Last Song
« Reply #3 on: January 31, 2015, 08:04:31 AM »

I link the 50s with the 60s, rather than the 60s with the 1970s (to me they are polar opposite decades).

I recently viewed a British TV series from 1971, 'Budgie', and it might have been made two centuries away from the vibrancy and optimism of the mid-60s. Actually they were only five years apart.   

The 60s would have existed without The Beatles.....it would have been different, sure, but it would broadly speaking be the decade we recognise.

The Beatles, certainly as a phenomenon, could not have existed without the 60s.
They'd either have been Tin Pan Alley/Denmark Street songwriters (if earlier) or also-rans in the 1970s (if later).
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Kevin

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Re: The Story of the Beatles' Last Song
« Reply #4 on: February 01, 2015, 08:48:51 AM »

I link the 50s with the 60s, rather than the 60s with the 1970s (to me they are polar opposite decades).

I recently viewed a British TV series from 1971, 'Budgie', and it might have been made two centuries away from the vibrancy and optimism of the mid-60s. Actually they were only five years apart.   

It's tempting isn't it to neatly divide the world into the handy ten year slots provided by the Callander. Certainly the move from 1959 to 1960 seems seamless. Woodstock to Altamont  is less comfortable, and The Beatles providing a handy full stop to the sixties isn't matched by say the death of Elvis in 59. (how different would his legend be now?)
I think more telling - and less convenient for filing - are the four short years that separate Dark Side Of The Moon from Never Mind The Bollocks
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don't follow leaders

oldbrownshoe

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Re: The Story of the Beatles' Last Song
« Reply #5 on: February 01, 2015, 09:27:41 AM »

You'll forgive me if I leave you to dwell on that.
I've already filed it.....in the bin!
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