The Beatles have arrived


The Beatles were an English rock band formed in Liverpool in 1960 and came to the U.S. for the first time this date in 1964. With members John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr, they became widely regarded as the foremost and most influential act of the rock era. Rooted in 1950s rock and roll, the Beatles later experimented with several musical styles, ranging from pop ballads and Indian music to psychedelia and hard rock, often incorporating classical elements and unconventional recording techniques in innovative ways. In the early 60s, their enormous popularity first emerged as “Beatlemania,” but they came to be perceived as an embodiment of the ideals shared by the counterculture of the 60s.

Manager Brian Epstein molded the Beatles into a professional act and producer George Martin guided and developed their recordings, greatly expanding their popularity. They acquired the nickname “the Fab Four” as Beatlemania grew and by early 1964 became international stars, leading the “British Invasion” of the US pop market. From 1965 onward, the Beatles produced increasingly innovative recordings, including Revolver, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, and Abbey Road.


After their break-up in 1970, they each enjoyed successful musical careers of varying lengths. McCartney and Starr, the surviving members, remain musically active. Lennon was shot and killed in December, 1980 and Harrison died of lung cancer in November, 2001.

According to the Recording Industry Association of America, the Beatles are the best-selling music artists in the U.S., with 178 million certified units. They have had more number-one albums on the British charts and sold more singles in the UK than any other act. In 2008, the group topped Billboard magazine’s list of the all-time most successful “Hot 100” artists; as of 2016, they hold the record for most number one hits with twenty. They have received ten Grammy Awards and an Academy Award for Best Original Song Score. Collectively included in Time magazine’s compilation of the 20th Century’s 100 most influential people, they are the best selling band in history with estimated sales of over 600 million records worldwide. The group was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1988, and all four were inducted individually from 1994 to 2015. Orchestras now perform their music to wide appeal. (from Wikipedia)

John Lennon assassinated


John Lennon was an English singer and songwriter who co-founded the Beatles, the most commercially successful band in the history of popular music. When the group disbanded in 1970, Lennon embarked on a solo career that produced numerous number one hits, including Imagine. He was assassinated in 1980.

By 2012, Lennon’s solo album sales in the U.S. exceeded 14 million and, as writer, co-writer or performer, he is responsible for 25 number one singles. In 2008, Rolling Stone ranked him the fifth-greatest singer of all time. He was posthumously inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1987 and into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame twice, as a member of the Beatles in 1988 and as a solo artist in 1994.


Imagine is the best-selling single of Lennon’s solo career. Its lyrics encourage the listener to imagine a world at peace without the barriers of borders or the divisions of religion and nationality, and to consider the possibility that the focus of humanity should be living a life unattached to material possessions. Imagine is one of the 100 most-performed songs of the 20th Century, ranking number 30 on the Recording Industry Association of America’s list of the “365 Songs of the Century bearing the most historical significance.”  It earned a Grammy, Hall of Fame Award and an induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s “500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll.”