I’m a little verklempt.

Discuss amongst yourself.  I’ll give you a topic. Ringo Starr was neither Ringo nor Starr. Discuss.

At the urging of Butters, I decided to go finally dig a little deeper into the poll I posted on 6/30.  If you didn’t see it, you can go here to vote for the most influential musician of all time.   I had only 5 people vote unfortunately, and maybe that only means I have 5 followers.  In any case there were 3 vote that agreed with my short statement about The Beatles.  The other 2 votes were for other musician not listed one the in the poll, which we learned from the comments were the Yardbirds and Jimi Hendrix.  Just for the record the three other options I originally listed were Led Zeppelin, Elvis Presley and The Rolling Stones.  I will now take some time to elaborate on my choice The Beatles.

First a few simple facts facts.  The Beatles have had more #1 hits than anyone with 20.  They have had the #1 single on the Billboard Hot 100 a total of 59 weeks. They also have had 19 #1 albums.  They have held the #1 spot on the Billboard Album chart a total of 132 weeks.  They have sold more than 1.3 billion records world wide.  Pretty amazing numbers.

There music also covers so many genres. They certainly started as big  “pop” and “rock n roll” musicians.  But they later also incorporated classical, folk, country, psychedelic, Indian, and punk rock into there music.  They were always changing based of outside influence on there music whether it was pressure to play more complicated melodies, or there current relationships or social views.   They used a wide variety of instrument in addition to their primary instruments the guitar, bass, piano and drums. These instrument included the sitar, recorder, harmonica, banjo, trumpet, saxophone, oboe, glockenspiel, vibraphone, accordion, kazoo (made out of comb and paper), and assorted percussion (congas, bongos, Arabian loose-skin bongo, African drum, timpani, anvil, package case, maracas, tambourine, zill, güiro).  So you can see they were also widely influenced by music all over the world based on instruments they used.

The Beatles have been covered by just about everyone at some point in there careers.  These artist sinclude John Denver, Florence and the Machine, The Pixies, Ben Harper, Earth, Wind & Fire, The Breeders, Alison Krauss, Eddie Vedder, Siouxsie & the Banshees, Daniel Johnson, Oasis, U2, Regina Spektor, Ben Folds, Jimi Hendrix, Jeff Beck, Emmy Lou Harris, Wilson Pickett, Johnny Cash, The Black Keys, Aretha Frankin, Tine Turner, Stevie Wonder, Al Green, Helloween, Ted Nugent, Lemmy Kilmister of Motorhead, White Zombie, Bathory, and Type O Negative.  I could go on and on, but you can see the wide scope of genres these artists encompass.  There are 38 tribute albums listed on wikipedia’s “The Beatles tribute albums” page.  I would have to think that is just the tip of the iceberg.

So those are just a few of the reasons I think The Beatles are the most influential, I welcome you opinion. I’ll leave you with my personal favorite song and further evidence of The Beatles influence.

4 thoughts on “I’m a little verklempt.

  1. You are forgetting one of the most amazing facts Joe. So you have mentioned the #1 hits, the #1 albums, the longevity of thier music. All amazing feats that I would gather never to be matched again. The fact that they released 12 studio albums, 13 EPs, and 22 singles in the short time of ten years is amazing. Thats right the Beatles were together as a band making music for only ten years. Most bands nowadays would kill for a relevant career of ten years, and would be happy with releasing 3 albums in that time frame. The Beatles wrote and recorded 217 songs (that we know of) in that time. There albums have been re-released multiple times on cassette, 8-track, compact disc, and on a USB flash drive in MP3 and 24-bit FLAC format. A band that was together for 10 years and is still influencing music forty years later, with that kind of trophy collection, with diehard fans, music still sought after for movies, commercials, and covered by an uncoutable number of artists. How can you not agree that the Beatles ARE the most influential band of all time.

    1. That is a very good point. I have forgotten that fact completely! I love that you mention FLAC files too! I’m sure most people who read this won’t even know what those are! (hmmm perhaps a blogpost to teach them?)

  2. The Beatles are by the far the most influential band of all times. No other band has even come close to them.

  3. I’m not old enough to have “experienced” Hendrix when he was alive, but I’d say he was the most influential “musician” of the rock genre during his time as opposed to “artist”. But I’d agree the Beatles were and probably are the most influential “artist”. I’d also say Miles Davis was probably at least as influential as both musician and artist in the 1950s and 1960s jazz era. But it sounds like we’re just considering rock and pop, right?

    Consider that the Who refused to follow Hendrix at Monterey because they feared he would blow everyone away before the Who took the stage. The great lead guitarist god world was very small in those days from what I gather. Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton and Jeff Beck were doing things no one had heard or seen. Today it seems almost every aspiring lead guitarist plays (or tries to) play in a similar style to one or all of those three.

    As a side note, I think Jimmy Page was probably the first to take what Jeff Beck was doing and carry the lead guitar god torch forward. Led Zep fans will never admit that Page stole all of Beck’s chops and made them popular. Check out “Truth” by Jeff Beck (with Rod Stewart and Ronnie Wood) and then listen to Led Zep I. “Zep I” was considered a rip off of “Truth” and panned by the critics when it first came out.

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