Today I decided to go bold, to right a wrong, to correct a horrible belief that has pervaded the hearts and minds of people for the past fifty years. The Beatles are the most overrated band in the history of music.
Yeah, I said it.
I feel it’s time I finally addressed this argument I’ve had with so many here at Goppygots so it can last forever on the Internet and my future great-grand kids can come across it and smack their foreheads. I want the record to show that the Beatles are a good band and they do have a lot of good songs. I get why people love them just like I get why I’m writing this while a live Def Leppard concert is playing on youtube in the background. Everyone has varying tastes, the ol’ different strokes for different folks expression certainty applies here. At the same time, c’mon – the best, most influential band of all time? I scoff at the notion, scoff I say. In fact I’m standing right now as I type this to fully maximize my scoffage. Let’s get to the five reasons why I feel so strongly about a band the rest of the world feels strongly about.
1) My first beef is the name. Now I know what you’re thinking, your first argument regarding the Beatles historical validity has to do with their choice of band moniker?
There are so many great band names they could have went with and they instead decided to go with shit. Not only did they go with shit, the other original names were even worse. According to that bastion of reliable information – Wikipedia, the following names predated their eventual choice as “The Beatles
1) The Blackjacks
2) The Quarrymen
3) Johnny and the Moondogs
5) The Silver Beetles
6) The Silver Beatles
7) The Beatles
You can tell a lot about a band by their name. I’m already uninspired.
2) Until 1965 they were basically a cover band that was more concerned with image than actual music. Hell, half of their songs on every album up until “Help” were covers! If I want covers I can drive to Staten Island tonight and go to a “Screaming Broccoli” show. I guarantee they’ll put on a better show too.
3) Piggybacking on #2 – because the Beatles were basically a cover band that was more concerned with image than actual music they were just the original boy band. The 1960’s version of N’Sync or New Kids On The Block. Screaming girls at their concerts? Check. Plenty of merchandise for the girls to buy? Check. Love songs up the wazoo? Cute little movies to indoctrinate everyone on how cool and fun and hip they all were? Check check and check. It’s funny, the majority of bands out there are concerned with artistic integrity, and not selling out and that’s exactly what the Beatles did – they sold out. They were a corporate band, a money making machine, designed to empty the pockets of every teenager. And they did.
4) There is a natural synergy to my list because my fourth issue has to do with their “concerts” and that is using the term extremely loosely. Imagine you paid money to go to a show where the band performed for thirty minutes. You’d be like what the hell man? Really? It took longer to walk inside from the parking lot! Do you know of any band that only plays for thirty minutes? I want my pizza in thirty minutes or less, not my music. All that says to me is there is a LOT of postproduction clean up in the studio, something you can’t do obviously live. Which makes sense because the Beatles stopped touring in 1966. The mark of a great band is their live shows. The best show I ever saw was Pearl Jam at MSG because they played three sets in three and a half hours. By the end of the show I was exhausted and thrilled at hearing so many songs performed even better than they sounded on my iPod. Conversely, there is nothing more disappointing than when a band can’t play their songs live. My cousin Matt saw “Third Eye Blind” live, a band I am proud to say I love and he said they were no better than okay, in a sense forever ruining his opinion of them. My last example is the late band, “Type O Negative.” I saw them three times over a six-year span and each time I left with a big dumb smile on my face. They never went over an hour, probably fifteen minutes of that were spent listening to the pitch perfect banter that is Pete Steele and yet all three shows were dead on great. There is nothing better than listening to live music.
5) Once they stopped touring they didn’t care about their appearances and could now embrace the hippy movement. Allow me to adopt a word from our Canadian brethren from the North but to me all that means is they were a punch of “posers.” Now that they didn’t care about appearances and started ingesting a copious amount of drugs they could make “interesting” music, music that took chances and wasn’t the safe teenage stuff of years past. To be fair I give them credit for expanding out of their tight corporate musical box. Good for you. Of course Pearl Jam decided to be different for their third album, “Vitalogy” and I don’t know anyone who to this day goes, “wow I’m so happy they made a seven minute version of “Hey Foxymophandlemama, That’s Me””
For those five reasons I cannot for the life of me fathom how people can say the Beatles were the greatest band of all time. Were they the blueprint for record labels to manufacture bands? Yes. Were they all about image and fluff? For half their recording lives yes. Most importantly, they were incapable of putting on a great show. Thirty minutes and some hair flipping does not make a great band, especially when bands like Led Zeppelin would play for HOURS.
The Beatles were a product of good timing. They were the first boy band to play upbeat guitar love songs. They were the first to exploit television to its true advantage. In my opinion though, first does not always equal best.
16 thoughts on “Why The Beatles are the Most Overrated Band in the History of Music”
Can I put the argument in as devil’s advocate to say Metallica is the best band of all time?
If your argument is Metallica before the Black album…although I love Garage Inc
i guess, yea load and reload weren’t that bad
I think part of the problem with the ‘influential’ argument you always hear is that once a band gets a reputation for being influential, every new band that comes along tries to claim they were influenced by that band. Sometimes you can hear it, and sometimes you know it’s an obligatory statement by band members. ‘We were all influenced by the beatles man!’. Influential is not really a good argument except in academia. (We call it “impact factor”)
Reblogged this on I Didn't Ask To Be a Blog.
Great Picture Says,THE BEATLES WEREN’T A BOY BAND DUMBASS
THE BEATLES WEREN’T A BOY BAND
Cheezburger.com – Crafted from the finest Internets.
This was re posted on other sites but in the comments to this picture on Pinterest a woman so rightly said,The Beatles weren’t a boy band,boy bands are terrible,they have little or no talent like One Direction.
Here is also my great blog with a lot of great information debunking this extremely ignorant,ludicrous myth that The Beatles were ever a boy band,
The Beatles Were NEVER A Boy Band They were Always A Great Rock n Roll,Pop Rock And Rock Band From The Start!
Here is my first more extensive blog that I can’t get back on to because I lost my password and I blocked wordpress by mistake.
THE BEATLES WERE * NEVER* A BOY BAND THEY WERE ALWAYS A …
The Beatles were * never* a boy band they were always a great rock n roll, pop rock & rock band from the start! debunking the stupid,ludicrous,ignorant,myth that the Beatles were ever a boy band
OK Let’s Stop the Beatle Boyband Shit Already! | Barefoot …
OK, let’s stop this Beatles “boyband” comparison shit. I know that when a band (person, actor, leader, artist) is the biggest thing ever, people just can’t stand it and they have to go on the attack and disassemble them, but this is utter rubbish.
Great youtube video by Mean Mr Mayo,
242. The Beatles were NOT a “boy band”
Typical modern day nonsense.
Pretty sure this guy is autistic.
I get what you’re doing. Really, I do. You’re trying to shit on people’s musical tastes to either appear more well-versed in music than them or you just want to see the shocked look on people’s faces as you besmirch their favorite band. And listen, I don’t blame you for either. They’re both fun activities that I partake in on the reg. If you name me a band you like, I will find a hundred different ways to judge you on your taste. If the band happens to feature a white guy with dreads, make it three hundred. But The Beatles, dude? The fucking Beatles? You are really scraping the barrel if you are knocking people for liking The Beatles, you moron.
Really, I don’t want to hear your half-cocked, grasping-at-straws theories about how The Beatles weren’t even talented musicians or how they stole their sound from other bands or how John was the only talented one. What I want you to do is shut your stupid-ass face, you stupid assface.
I’m not even defending The Beatles, per se. They’re not my favorite band or anything. But they’re…they are…what’s the word I’m looking for here? Oh right. THEY’RE THE FUCKING BEATLES, the musical foundation on which just about everything you listen to was probably built. Does that even need to be said? Being a music fan who shits on The Beatles is like standing in the comfort of your warm house and being like, “Yeah, wood is way overrated, dude. When you think about it, wood’s not really that great.” Just take your mouth and shut it up, you fucking dummy.
It’s hard to tell through that stupid, shit-eating grin, but are you trying to be funny or do you genuinely not like The Beatles? Because I’ll bet if we sat you down in a room and started playing “All You Need Is Love” or “When I’m Sixty-Four,” you’d probably start crying and piss your stupid pants from pretending not to have all the emotions in the world. If we played “Here Comes the Sun” when you’re having a bad day, chances are 10,000% that you’d outright shit yourself as a result of the overwhelming melange of joyful optimism and unbridled awe, you pants-pissing pants-pisser.
If you need other ways to torment people that make you come off as less of a pretentious asshole than shitting on The Beatles, here are some activities to keep you busy…
Inform small children there’s no Santa Claus.
Go to the Holocaust Museum and tell patrons that Hitler had some pretty good ideas.
Stand outside the window at Curves eating a McRib.
Guys: Tell a woman that childbirth isn’t really a big deal.
Ladies: Tell a guy that getting kicked in the junk isn’t all that painful.
Go to the Million Man March and say Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech ran a little long.
For Christ’s sake, the band has sold more albums and has had more number one hits than any band ever. They are the bestselling band in the history of fucking music. This is the one band we as a society should all be able to unanimously agree on as a model for… Wait, no. NO. This is exactly what you want. This is the game you want me to play. You want me to get all riled up and start defending The Beatles. Well I’m not gonna give you the satisfaction.
Instead, I’m gonna go the higher route and take a page from Mr. Lennon when I say: Love is all you need. And go fuck yourself, idiot.
This is the best comment I have ever received in public or on the internet. The fact that you managed to get in pissing myself, shitting myself, the Holocaust, Martin Luther King Jr and calling me an assface, a dummy and an idiot means you win the Internet today. Bravo George T…bravo!
Triggered. The Beatles… music for people who don’t really like music. Deal, hippie.
Beatles fans are really toxic. This just goes to show how overrated they are. The Beatles were definitely influential, but not that talented. They do have some good songs, but they just exploit the media.
Also, they technically are considered a boyband. Please stop being toxic and demeaning those who don’t listen to the Beatles, lol. They really aren’t the best.
A boy band yes, plagiarists yes, easy listening yes, publicity whores yes, mum’s and dad’s safe music till the drab s sergeant pepper. All in all an average overated band but admittedly the most famous and name checked ever. They must be the most popular lot of all time but McDonald’s is probably the most popular food but certainly nowhere near the best. In short they are McDonald’s for the ears.
Talk about an easy target. Yes, of course they were overrated. Musicologists wrote academic papers about modal and tonal shifts in their compositions. People worshiped them. Screaming hysterical girls. They’re part of the establishment, now. The squares at Rolling Stone magazine who claim that Sgt. Pepper’s was the greatest album of all time. But – “The Beatles are the Most Overrated Band in the History of Music”? Sounds like hyperbole.
The Boy Band shit? It’s true that Brian Epstein got them to take off their leather jackets and lose their bad boy image, to do covers of “A Taste of Honey” instead of imitating American rockabilly groups and Elvis; but if he hadn’t done that they probably wouldn’t have been heard.
Their 30-minute concerts? The halls were so full of screaming, hysterical girls that they couldn’t be heard. It’s not their fault that Beatlemania happened. If you can explain why it happened, and why all those girls lost their shit, you’ll win a prize. Or something.
A cover band? Compare the albums by the Rolling Stones and the Beatles from around ’61 through ’63. The Rolling Stones were a cover band, then! I think that the Stones were better than the Beatles, but that’s just my own preference. If half the songs on the early Beatles records were covers, the other ones weren’t. And they’re not adulated because they wrote “Love Me Do”, “Please Please Me”, and “I Wanna Hold Your Hand”.
A corporate band? That entire criticism didn’t come about until MTV. Until radio went corporate. Until the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame was built. At the time, after late ’64 or so until they broke up, they were tremendously innovative. Often imitated. Corporate rock groups don’t do that.
Their name? At the time that they got their start their rivals were Gerry and the Pacemakers, Herman’s Hermits, Manfred Mann, etc. Take a look at the pop charts circa 1961, 62, 63. Take a look at the names of those groups. It’s silly to compare groups who named themselves *after* all the changes that took place in the mid-60s, 70s and later to the way that the Beatles were in the early sixties.
Check your math. On Please Please Me, 6 out of 14 songs were covers, on With the Beatles, 5 out of 14 songs were covers, and on A Hard Day’s Night, zero songs out of 14 were covers. If you’re talking American albums, on Meet the Beatles only 1 out of 12 songs were covers. You lost a lot of credibility by messing up some simple math.
Finally, someone said it. Thank you! They couldn’t sing. They didn’t dance. They could barely play instruments. Their song writing skills were variable. So what was the appeal? Good marketing and PR. They were probably the first boy band, with Paul’s good looks being the main hook. Their counter-culture message was in the right place at the right time. They were the butt of many jokes, which added to their appeal (e.g. Frankie Avalon take offs of “She loves you, ya, ya ya … ooooooh” in Beach Blanket movies), and their songs were simple and easy to play and sing for wanna be rock stars playing guitar in their bedroom. Even Paul lampooned their success on “Silly Love Song,” with the chorus repeating, simply “I—- Love—- You—-.” The story of the Beatles reminds me of the “Emperors New Clothes” fairy tale.