Vintage Rock Presents – The Beatles – The Later Years
From mop tops to songwriting sophisticates, Rubber Soul signalled a sea change for The Beatles.
The Beatles all agreed that it was Elvis who set the hall rolling when his brand of illicit rock’n’roll gave newly christened ‘teenagers’ their virgin thrills. And when John, Paul, George and Ringo finally got their act together, they rode his riotous wave into a bright and breezy future, feeding that youthful appetite for more, more, more with their addictive Merseybeat hooks.
But it was the band’s output after they’d outgrown the mop tops and left the nubile screams of Beatlemania echoing around the stadiums that shifted the poles permanently and changed music forever. With 1965’s Rubber Soul, pop music tipped its hat to adolescence, left home and danced into a new unknown. It can be argued that with that album, a set of beautifully-crafted, grownup- and most importantly entirely original – songs, that the pop musician was finally granted ‘artist’ status. After that, of course, pop’s floodgates were whipped off their hinges and lost to the storm. With the rapid-fire arrival of Revolver and Sgt. Pepper, the world of music bust its seams and was suddenly, irrevocably blaze, buzzing to a boundless, transcendental new vibration.
The Beatles were discovering new plains to explore on a daily basis and the Abbey Road studio became the conduit through which they could explore their innermost creative ideas; And hoy; did they … with ‘The White Album’, Abbey Road and, finally, Let It Be, the world was treated to the finest musical era that’s ever been … –
It’s often remarked what an incredible personal and creative evolution The Beatles underwent in the short four-year period between the release of Please Please Me and Sgt. Pepper. And that journey accelerated to warp speed after the band broke America, as a world of possibilities seemed to open up to them creatively, socially and philosophically.
Such was The Beatles’ cultural impact by the middle of 1965 that the media and entertainment establishment had increasingly realised that there was sorne real substance behind the startling phenomenon of Beatlemania – and the British Invasion of the US that had followed.
All four members of the Beatles were now based in London, rubbing shoulders and rolling joints with a hip and sophisticated crowd that may have been hanging out only a couple of hundred miles down the road front The Cavern, but might as well have been on a different planet.