The Beatles
Reissues

5 out of 5 stars
Reviewed for Coffeerooms by Mike Jefferson

YEAH! YEAH! YEAH!

I feel extremely fortunate to have grown up with The Beatles. We needed them when they came to the U.S. in 1964. Our President had been shot down the previous November in graphic fashion, plunging the nation into mourning. The Beatles gave us back our optimism and hope. When I saw them on "The Ed Sullivan Show," they were charismatic, electric, original, and above all, magical. I came to know them better than my own kin: John the witty one, Paul the pretty one, George the quiet one, and Ringo the nice one. I listened intently as they progressed from the straightforward pop of "Love Me Do," to the psychedelia of "I am the Walrus" -- and I shed a tear when they reached "The Long and Winding Road."

I'm certain that without The Beatles popular music as we know it wouldn't exist. No Dead. No Doors. No Traffic. No Crosby, no Stills, no Nash. No catharsis the moment I heard Mike Harrison of Spooky Tooth growl his way through their version of "I am the Walrus." The Beatles expanded the horizons of the 45 r.p.m. pop song by adding orchestras, tape loops, and multi-tracking while crafting lyrics that touched the mind as well as the heart. I fear that without The Beatles we'd still be listening to cocktail lounge music by Frankie Laine (providing he and his raccoon toupee were still alive), country corn by Homer and Jethro, or two minute teenager in love ditties by Fabian.


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