If you spend time fishing for interesting music links on social media you’re bound to see some content pop up repeatedly. Here’s ten videos concerning “the toppermost of the poppermost” that fit that description, and for good reason: each lead us to hear The Beatles anew or consider their impact in a way we probably hadn’t before.
1) To begin with, if you’re only vaguely familiar with The Beatles, start with the basics – “The Beatles By The Numbers” via The New York Times for the 50th anniversary of America meeting the Beatles this past February..
Bonus video: here’s some more basics for the uninitiated, a short snippet of every Beatles song with its primary composer/ vocalist listed.
2) Let’s dig a bit deeper into those vocals, shall we? Here’s audio samples of the highest and lowest pitches The Beatles ever sang on record:
3) Some of the most interesting videos come from breaking down The Beatles original multitrack recordings. In the video below Sir George Martin, his son Giles and Dhani Harrison listen to “Here Comes The Sun” and reveal its “lost guitar solo.” The full song with the solo is here. What an awesome alternate take on this Abbey Road classic!
4-5) Also concerning the original multitracks, a few years ago Randy Bachman visted Abbey Road EMI Studios and listened to The Beatles original tapes of “Hard Day’s Night” to figure out the exact voicing of that mysterious opening chord that has stumped musicians for decades. There’s also numerous “isolated tracks” on YouTube – for instance, the isolated vocals from the Abbey Road side B medley.
6-7) The first video below ups the ante by deconstructing four separate tracks from “Sgt Pepper’s” in one video with a visualizer. The second video below takes a different route: the uploader broke down all 9 vocal lines from “Because” (three lines each by John, Paul and George) then recorded himself singing them
8) For decades the many hours of unused footage filmed during the “Get Project” in early 1969 (for the film that became Let It Be) has been at the center of every Beatles bootleg collection. In the past decade these clips have been more accessible than ever thanks to YouTube. Lots of it these videos are frankly, not revealing (and kind of boring). But then amongst that will be some very amusing moments.One highlight for all you Yoko fans is below.
The story goes that after George Harrison secretly quite the band (having tired of Paul micromanaging his playing), he stormed out. The other three didn’t know what to do, so – with Yoko taking the lead, and John waving his guitar in the air like the future Thurston Moore – they jumped into this:
9) If you’re hunting for clues that Paul really is dead, here’s “Revolution 9” in reverse:
10) Finally, here’s every song in the Beatles catalog played all at once (with a staggered entrance so they all end together):