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Overrated? Underrated?

June 2024
1min read

While revisionism seems to spill over even to popular culture, one must put the Beatles into proper context. They were original. With the possible exception of Phil Spector and Brian Wilson, there was no one in this country approaching rock and roll as anything more than pulp for teenagers. In the beginning it was true that the Beatles covered many black American artists, but as they hit their stride as composers, this approach was abandoned in favor of their own original compositions. They pioneered artistic control when it was unknown in the music business. Their influence on popular culture was unprecedented. Witness the number of imitators and wannabes. No one to this day has had the impact that the Beatles had in those first heady years of 1964–65. Not Elvis, not Michael Jackson.

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