Discussion in 'The Sound Hound Lounge' started by RichusRkr, Sep 9, 2019.
Becoming a studio only band produced their most revered works. Not a bad way to start dying.
As for the Beatles....
1000 factors, 1000 reasons....but we are lucky they left us so much good music, and from that music, millions of hours of music inspired by them directly and indirectly.
Doesn’t matter. They were done as a band when they stopped being a band and started being studio experimenters.
I think of the various groups I have played with in my amateur life. One I left because I thought the drummer and bass player were over bearing dicks. One I left because of the drummer and guitarists alcohol abuse. One I left because the others had no gear of their own and we all paid for rental space with gear.
To have expected the Beatles to stay together because they were the Fab Four ?
The Beatles stopped, but the members often worked together. They shared something we can never understand.
George had also pointed out John's traumatic childhood - abandoned by both parents, mother returned but then is killed in car accident. He said that back then they didn't know about psychology and how events can affect the brain. They thought "That's just John".
1) Lennon's drug use... first Acid, then Heroin (even the "Yoko issue" became a by-product of this... the more hooked he got, the more dominant she became)
2) George had been feeling strangled by Beatledom for years – held back by John & Paul, and constrained by the band's fame
3) McCartney's a workaholic and control-freak... once Epstein died, Paul tried to keep things going but just ended up being resented by the others
There's zero doubt in my mind that both Paul & Ringo would've kept the group right on going... yeah, Ringo was feeling left out & took a break during the White Album, but he was really everybody else's best buddy in the band (then & now). McCartney only "quit" the band to help promote his first solo album... but by that point, the group was already a shambles, and they all knew it was over. Paul simply went public with it, that's all (and to his own benefit)
If you can find a copy of this... (long out of print), I highly recommend it. Provides tons of insight into where they were at towards the end.
I think Epstein's loss was very important. I think if Epstein had been around, he would have been able to better navigate the problems with touring, and the individuals going in different directions. He was their tiller-man for years, and steered them with a stern hand. When he was gone, they were much more adrift. Epstein's loss allowed the little things to grow to become big enough to eventually break-up the band.
I honestly don't think that was a conscious effort on his part... yeah, he was always extremely ambitious, pushy and a bit of a prima donna (even the earliest of session outtakes confirm that – as do many contemporary eyewitness accounts).
But I think he effectively took over as "leader" because John let him. The combo of Lennon's becoming disenchanted with the whole thing led to his increased drug use... and just as McCartney was truly coming into his own as a musical & creative force.
Pair that with Epstein dying, and the role was Paul's for the taking....
Super Beatles Amps
Paul really grounded with a good marriage to Linda. John and George were druggies with expected bad marriages. Ringo had his head on good but wasn't creative without the others.
The Beatles were in uncharted territory for a Band - their Manager/Diplomat/Mediator had passed on - they had no idea they could take an extended break - and they were just normal people in a very extraordinary place.
All the other peripheral stuff - is really just that - noise that interfered.
10 years was a damn good run. George said it eloquently: "All things must pass."
All things must pass
All things must pass away
All things must pass
None of life's strings can last
So, I must be on my way
And face another day.
I think John Lennon taking his ball and chain into the studio with him was the straw that broke the camels back and a symptom of a far bigger problem.
The dude was getting a bit wacky. He seemed to be very easily influenced and manipulated and was following anything that moved, including leaving a beautiful wife for a rather homely woman who was pretending to be an artist and had him conned into thinking she was an artist. The gossip media was reporting his every move and every word, and I think he started getting a bit full of himself and started playing to the camera, what with the Toronto sit in and all that silly nonsense.
And then there was that primal scream insanity. Sheeesh. I think the dude was losing it.
If I was in a working band with someone that far off the deep end, I don't think I would have wanted to keep it going either.
I remember the first time I heard that album with his old lady screeching like a cat rape, I was in a room full of people who simultaneously said "what the HELL is THAT!" and busted out laughing when the Yoko torture chamber screeches came on.
That John Lennon seen anything even remotely musical about that and the embarrassing Stones Circus thing where she was screeching while inside a laundry bag pretty much wrecked any musical credibility he had at that point.
So I think blaming it all on his old lady is kind of short sighted. If it hadn't been her it would have been some other act of lunacy.
Aside from, those guys really worked their asses off for 10 years to get where they were, and they started out as kids. They became adults, and as adults they were different human beings than they were when they was 15 year olds with dreams.
They went through the music industry grinder for a long time, hard and heavy, and
tolerated it all together. John Lennon , if I remember right, said more than one time in interviews that he had a bit of disdain for the whole smile for the camera and the movies and all that crap. I think he was fed up with being a Beatle before the others, but chances are all of them had a snoot full of the music industry by then, at least from the standpoint of being chained contractually to the Beatles.
With the whole Apple thing I think they also got in over their heads.
I got the impression that when Mr McCartney made the announcement that he was bailing, he just wanted to keep doing music but being tied to a sinking ship was keeping him from doing that, judging by interviews with him about that time.
I don't think that is true. Ringo and George Harrison both were pretty much, compared to Mcartney and Lennon, pushed to the back of the bus as far as the media was concerned. I never had the impression either were the least bit egotistical and seemed to be somewhat humbled by their situation.
It really wasn't until the Concert for Bangladesh and All Things Must Pass that George Harrison got an substantial media exposure other than with the Beatles, and even then he seemed to be very humble.
And Paul McCartney seemed to have been very level headed with it all. I get the impression he was the guy who worked closely with George Martin all the time and seemed to keep it all about the music.
He didn't seem to view himself as some kind of guru for youth culture or anything like that. Which Mr Lennon obviously did.
I was really a big Lennon Fan back then and thought him to be the true genius in the Beatles, but over time that opinion changed drastically, as I went back and dug up old interviews and read them.
Especially after the whole primal scream nonsense. I think his was the only ego that got too big, but even with him he seemed to play down the importance of the Beatles.
I also think the whole Manson Helter Skelter thing jerked the slack out of them and caused them all to rethink how they presented themselves to the public. None of them seemed to like being put on pedestals in the publics eye after that.
When you look at some of the egos on popular musicians and actors of that time period, I think those guys kept their egos in check very well considering the whole world treated them like they were some kind of talisman.
Ringo seemed to be creative enough to be a successful solo artist without them, and still is to this day. He was also the only Beatle to have had a successful career in music prior to becoming a Beatle. I never viewed him as lacking creativity.
Band burnout according Paul. He was the first to go.
I think it was more of a "somebody has to get of their ass and do something" situation more than anything. Ringo and George Harrison were neither dominant songwriters in the band or dominant personalities, and it certainly wasn't George Martins job to take control, and John Lennon seemed to be preoccupied. So somebody had to do it and McCartney did, because there was nobody else.
I don't think Mr Lennon so much "let him" as it was that he was probably relieved to be released from the burden and could have cared less.
They all wanted the Beatles to continue - until Paul broke the mold and sued them - and even then He would have continued if the other three had not sided with the evil and criminal Klein.