Friday, April 11, 2008

The Abbey Road to Ruin

     I don't know what's so great about The Beatles.  There I said it.  If the internet was a TV, households around the world would be going "click" and Father Time would be yelling at the TV.  And that's okay.  Everyone is entitled to their opinion.  But honestly, I don't understand what's the big deal.  
     Now, before you gather up your friends, use contextual clues from throughout my blogs to decipher where I live, come to my town, get a hotel room, find my house, and lynch me from the nearest telephone pole (good news!  It's right across the street) hear me out.  I am not saying that the Beatles aren't a good band.  Not at all.  In fact, I enjoy many of their songs.  If you scan through my iTunes you will find some Beatles tunes.  If I hear them on the radio I probably won't turn them off.  But you won't find me buying any of their albums.  You won't see me and my friends making an Abbey Road album cover knockoff.  You won't catch me putting any of their quotes up on my non-existent MySpace page.  It's not going to happen.  I respect what the Beatles did.  I agree that they created and sustained a worldwide popular musical revolution.  And for that I give them props.  But please, let's everyone crawl out of John Lennon's ass, okay?
     So let's start at the top.  Why?  I can hear you crying, whining, screaming the question to the heavens. Why?  There are lots of reasons.  The first reason is that everyone loves the Beatles.  And that's fine.  But the more you love them the less I am going to.  That's how it is.  I am naturally skeptical.  If everyone in the world thinks that it's the greatest thing ever, there is no way that it is.  I refused to even apply to the college that everyone in my high school was going to.  Everyone I know is moving to the same cities.  I refuse to move there.  Be different.  I am naturally inclined to look at them more harshly because they are put upon this pedestal all the time.
  That's just the way it is, whether it's right or wrong.  So deal with it, because you won't be able to change it.
     Another reason is because I don't think that the Beatles did anything terribly spectacular.  And this is the biggest selling point that Beatles fans make to me.  They revolutionized music.  They totally changed the way music was, the sounds that music incorporated, they made millions on women and men swoon all over the world.   I get all that.  When they got off the plane from England they brought the British sound with them.  They brought oodles of boyish charm.  They brought new ideas of rhythm and sound.  Totally.  They revolutionized the musical scene in America and around the world.  Fine.  But so did Elvis.  He fused blues with rock and roll.  So did Nirvana.  They brought the Seattle grunge scene to the world.  So did the Backstreet Boys.  They brought the scourge that is boy bands to us.  So did Beethoven.  He brought us chords, rhythms, and melodies that no one had even thought of.  So did the first guy to stretch an animal skin across a hollow log.  He brought us the drum.  That doesn't mean that I am going to bow down to and of them.  That doesn't mean that I have to love any of them.  Respect them?  Absolutely.  Acknowledge their contribution?  Totally.  But just because you were the pioneer that doesn't mean that you are the best.  Czarist Russia pioneered the Trans-Siberian Railroad.  But it sucked and broke down all the time.  The Communists came along and made it strong and reliable.  The Wright brothers pioneered the airplane, but I challenge someone to tell me that Lockheed Martin or Airbus doesn't make a plane that is better than the Wright Brothers Flyer.  The point that I am making is that somewhere there is someone who prefers The Dave Clark Five to the Beatles.  Somewhere there is someone who likes Alice in Chains better than Nirvana.   Somewhere out there two girls are arguing about Backstreet Boys vs. N'Sync.  And their mom's are arguing about Elvis vs. The Big Bopper.  Just because you were first does not mean that you were the best.  But big ups for being first.
     John Lennon wasn't on to anything big.  Peace and love and Asian chicks?  Millions of people have been saying that for hundreds of years.  They are call Buddhists.  They live in China.  I give him credit for using his fame to spread that message, don't get me wrong.  But let's not worship him.  I don't know why twenty-somethings are prostrating themselves on his grave on the day he was killed.  You didn't even live when he did.  He didn't say anything that your parents didn't say to you.  And he didn't stand up for what he believed the way Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr did.  Or the way Abraham Lincoln did.  He just ran around New York City being rich and famous and hanging out in an appropriate, realistic manner.  Cool.  But he's no George Washington.  Plus, he married a manipulative retard.
     I am still not sure why I should care about Paul McCartney either.  Some please tell me.  I am waiting.  Still waiting.  Still waiting.  See what I mean?  He didn't do anything greatly notable either.  Although, I like how he got the one up on Michael Jackson.  I don't care about his divorce.  I don't care about all that stuff.  Why is he knighted?  I guess that he made like eleventy billion people happy.  That's cool.  Made the world a better place?   I don't know about that one.  But no one had better be prostrating themselves on his grave when he dies.
     There is no reason for anyone anywhere to ever care about Ringo Starr.
     And George Harrison?  I like George.  If I had to pick a favorite Beatle, he would be it.  Rode the wave, was happy with it; just did his thing and kept his mouth shut.  I like that about him.  It was like he was the one who didn't care that he was in the most famous band of all time.  I mean, come on.  That is the definition of cool.  It's not who is sitting in the corner of the club acting like he's too cool to be there; it's about the guy who doesn't care that he really is too cool to be there.  Same with George.  It wasn't about trying really hard like Ringo.  It wasn't about trying to set the scene like John.  Or about commanding the scene like Paul.  It was about being part of the scene but not letting it get to your head.  So that's why George was the best.  End of discussion.
      If you like the Beatles, that's fine.  More power to you.  If you think that they are the end-all be-all of music, come off it.  They set a trend.  A very popular trend.  But in the end that trend was replaced by another one.  And then that one was replaced by yet another.  And so it went on.  And so it will for as long as we listen to music.  So give the Beatles the appropriate credit.  But let's keep things in focus.  It will keep us from being led astray down the Abbey Road to ruin.  


SandRiverGuy said...

Very true i mean i wasnt the first person to put sand river on the map but i am by far the coolest and im still ok with that

Roxy said...

Ooohhh....I'm telling Father Time on you.....:)