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#1006 Sneakeater

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Posted 09 April 2012 - 09:39 PM

But it might also have been less catholic. Maybe there would have been no mass Youth Culture.

Of course, if pop were based almost entirely on R&B, maybe we'd have done better here with race issues.

Again, it would have been very very different.
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#1007 Anthony Bonner

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Posted 09 April 2012 - 09:40 PM

The mandolin solo is what really makes it.
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#1008 Sneakeater

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Posted 09 April 2012 - 09:47 PM

No matter how big he got, I don't think Solomon Burke would ever have said he was bigger than Jesus.
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#1009 Lex

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Posted 09 April 2012 - 09:47 PM

And maybe we'd all have been listening to R&B.

Sneak said something similar just a few minutes ago. I agree with both of you. Motown was already becoming huge in 1964 and definitely crossed over to white audiences. By 1965/66 Stax had broken. Otis Redding, Sam and Dave, Wilson Picket. Stax was a *lot* more rock friendly. All the bar bands that played around NY as I grew up featured plenty of Stax stuff along with the rock covers they played.

Stevie Wonder hit his golden age in 1969. There was a lot of fantastic stuff going on in American music but it was all being done by black musicians.

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#1010 Sneakeater

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Posted 09 April 2012 - 09:50 PM

There's this famous story of this guy who was driving across the Sahara Desert in 1967, and he got to this oasis and there was a bar where the band was playing, "In the Midnight Hour."
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#1011 ghostrider

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 12:22 AM

And maybe we'd all have been listening to R&B. The Rolling Stones untouched by Beatles influence might have been a good thing. (No, we don't know that they wouldn't have written original material.)

The story I remember is that Andrew Loog Oldham said to Mick & Keith, "You're going to run out of obscure blues songs that audiences haven't heard before. If you want to continue to have this career, you're going to have to start writing your own stuff." He then locked them in a room & wouldn't let them out until they composed a song. Whereupon they wrote The Last Time.

Maybe that's apocryphal. Maybe Oldham wouldn't have done that without the Beatles looming in the background. I suspect that the realities of the music biz would have made something like that happen with or without the Beatles.

I also recall Keef saying in his autobiography (I paraphrase), the times were ripe for the mass-audience thing to happen. It could have been anybody. It was sheer accident that the Beatles were in the right place at the right time for it to be them, & for the Stones to come along at the right time to tap into what the Beatles had unleashed.
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#1012 Wilfrid

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 12:34 PM

That all sounds plausible. It may be worth noting that the Stones started writing their own material in 1965; they didn't buckle down after they'd recorded the Lennon-McCartney song in 1963. So it was perhaps not a case of, wow The Beatles are doing it, we should do it too.

#1013 Wilfrid

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 12:35 PM

Maybe there would have been no mass Youth Culture.


If anyone is going to attribute that to The Beatles, we may have a new topic for today.

#1014 hollywood

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 01:08 PM

No matter how big he got, I don't think Solomon Burke would ever have said he was bigger than Jesus.

Physically, he did get pretty big.

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#1015 Sneakeater

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 01:31 PM


Maybe there would have been no mass Youth Culture.


If anyone is going to attribute that to The Beatles, we may have a new topic for today.


There has been more bullshit written about '60s white rock music and the '60s/'70s counterculture than maybe any subject on earth, but I could show you countless "analysts", from Greil Marcus on down, who would say that the counterculture arose, at least in part, from the egalitarian/collective ethos of the integral not-lead-and-backup four-or-five-piece vocal/instrumental rock band. Which, in the U.S., we attribute to the Beatles.
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#1016 Sneakeater

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 02:14 PM

Here's one I already quoted in this thread (the author goes on in this vein beyond the passage I quoted):

Experimentalism Otherwise: The New York Avant-Garde and Its Limits, by Benjamin Piekut, discusses a set of events that occurred in New York in 1964 that are meant to show the nature and limitations of the then-extant New York avant-garde music scene.* In the beginning of the book, the author discusses the significance of the year 1964 in New York musical culture. Among other things he mentions:

During the same weekend as that of [the New York Philharmonic's famous performances of John Cage's Atlas Eclipticalis**] (February 7-9), the Beatles arrived in New York to appear on the Ed Sullivan Show, a broadcast that set off a year of Beatlemania and radically altered the public tenor of youth culture and popular music.


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* Intriguingly, the book has an epilogue -- I'm not there yet -- that traces the influence of a series of avant-garde music festivals run in Ann Arbor, Mich. throughout the early-mid 60s on one Jim Osterberg and his transformation into Iggy Stooge/Pop.

** Famous because the members of the orchestra effectively revolted against Cage's aleatory techniques.


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#1017 Sneakeater

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 03:54 PM

And get a load of this. (TCNJ is The College of New Jersey.)

Again, I'm not necessarily endorsing this stuff (especially undergraduate prattle by any undergraduate other than my former self), just pointing out its existence.
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#1018 Sneakeater

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 03:59 PM

From Michael F. Frontani, The Beatles: Image and the Media 179 (Univeristy Press of Mississippi 2007):

The Beatles were the vehicle by which the counterculture ideal was conveyed [by both countercultural and mainstream media] not only to committed counterculturists, but also to the general public.


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#1019 Sneakeater

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 04:19 PM

From Christopher Gair, The American Counterculture 167 (Edinburgh University Press 2007)(footnote omitted):

The arrival of the Beatles in the U.S. on 7 February 1964 -- and their debut on the Ed Sullivan Show two days later, watched by an estimated 73 million people -- confirmed their new status not only as the most important band of the twentieth century, but also as the prime shapers of American music for the remainder of the decade.

The legacy of the Beatles to the American counterculture is too great to explore in full here. . . .


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#1020 Sneakeater

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 04:29 PM

(I'll not for Yvonne's benefit that that last author is a Scot.)
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