The Beatles


John Winston Lennon was born in the maternity hospital in the Oxford Street on October 9 1940 at 6.30 o'clock during a heavy air raid of the German air force.

His parents were divorced already soon after his birth. John was educated by his aunt. John formed a Band named " Quarrymen ". When he changed school he became acquainted with Paul McCartney who also joined the group.

James Paul McCartney was born on June 18 1942 in Liverpool. In the year 1956 he met John Lennon and joined the " Quarrymen ". When Paul was 14 years old his mother died of cancer of the breast.

George Harrison was born on February 25 1943 also in Liverpool. He startet with music very early and his family and parents supported him and bought him his first guitar for 3 Pound. At Liverpool Institute he became acquainted with Paul McCartney, with whom he made friends; soon they joined together to play music. John Lennon was impressed by the guitar skills of George Harrison and accepted him immediately to the "Quarrymen ".

Ringo Starr was born on July 7 1940 as the only child of Richard and Elsie Starkey in Liverpool. Since his parents seperated 3 years after his birth he hardly became acquainted with a correct family life. As a joint founder of the " Eddie Clyton Skiffle Group " he found links to the Liverpool music scene.

About the band:

The Beatles were the most important representatives of the Beat music and were also involved in it's naming. They made music history. The Beatles came from Liverpool to the English west coast. Founders were actually John Lennon and Paul McCartney. John Lennon dedicated himself around 1955 to the study of Rock'n'Roll so much that he had to leave school because of its lazyness. From 1958 he and Paul McCartney appeared first as hit singers, and in addition, as organ and piano players. From their first band "The Nurk Twins" they formed after repeated changes of the musicians together with George Harrison and Ringo Starr "The Beatles". Their leader was John Lennon.

They had their first appearance on December 27 1960 in the parish meeting hall of the Liverpool suburb Litherland. A short time later they preformed also in Hamburg at the "Star Club". It is assumed that there the fotographer Astrid Kirchherr invented the famous "mushroom head hair-style"; in English "Moptop hair-style". The famous team of Lennon, McCartney, Starr and Harrison published 1962 their first single with the title "Love Me Do". With this song they placed themselves on place 17 of the English hit parade. Further recordings and publications followed, which immediately reached the first places of the hit parades and which made the group internationally popular. They helped a whole generation to overcome old rules and develop an own personality. With their "Moptop" hairstyle "The Beatles" attracted much attention. With their long hair, their casual clothes and their loose behaviour they were considered to be an example for all of England. Most of the song texts were written by John Lennon; they were dreamy, biting and also often directed against the English society. Because of their unusual musical talents and their large success in the whole world "The Beatles" were awarded with the medal "Members of British Empire" by the British queen, Elizabeth II. John Lennon however returned it later, to protest against the adjustment of the group to old habits in the show business. Big successes and good profits of their record company "Apple ", motivated the musicians to do more and more new recordings. "The Beatles" published more than 180 titles altogether and more than 50 Singles and LPs. In total they wrote 230 Songs and sold over 200 million records. In addition many recordings of their songs were made by other musicians. Starting in 1970 the group began to break up itself. The musicians had problems with their music and different oppinions how it should be. They had problems with drugs and failures in business. Officially the group broke up in 1974. The members had gone their own musical ways already before that. All lived of their fame more or less successfully until they had their first successes in solo careers.

John Lennon for example for some years lead a secluded life with his wife Yoko Ono, until he returned to stage as a Jack of all trades - musician, painter, writer, actor - in 1980. He was murdered however only short time later. His biggest success as Soloist was "Imagine".

George Harrison had been attracted to Indian Gurus already at the end of the "Beatles" period. Religious thoughts influenced him many years. One of his biggest successes as Solist was "My sweet Lord".

Ringo Starr was little heard of. He stayed popular however by doing re-recordings of some hits of the 50's.

Paul McCartney was the most successfull member of "The Beatles" both as musician and financially.

He remained a well-known star by rights to his old songs and new hits. Toghether with his wife Linda he led the group "Wings" to big successes. Their biggest hits were: "Mull of Kintyre", "Band on the run", "Silly love songs", the title music to the James Bond film "Live and let die" and also "Ebony and Ivory", together with Stevie Wonder.

The music of the Beatles renewed the Rock'n'Roll of the 50's and stimulated it with funny texts. Examples of this are "Yeah, Yeah, Yeah", "I want to hold your hand" and also "ALL you need is love". The music left the fixed rhythms and patterns of the Rock'n'Roll and combined classical music forms, exotic instruments and electronic effects with witty and ironical texts. In the beginning, the singing of serveral voices was accompanied only by rhythm guitar, solo guitar, bass guitar and drums. Later strings, wind instruments etc. were added. The Songs of the Beatles are versatile and gave many impulses to the Rock- and Popmusik. The music of Paul McCartney and the texts of John Lennon resulted in a unique basis for successe and made "The Beatles" a part of history.

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