The Beatles Now

From Commentary Mgazine:

Beatles The Beatles released Let It Be, the last of their thirteen albums, 36 years ago. Today there is no one musical group or soloist capable of commanding the attention paid to John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr between 1964, when they first appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show, and 1970, when McCartney announced that the group was disbanding. Just as there is no longer a common culture, so there is no longer a common style of music to which most English-speaking people listen. Written in a straightforwardly journalistic style, The Beatles: The Biography provides an exhaustive and generally reliable account of the bandmembers’ lives and careers up to 1970, and is of no small value as a study in what might be called the sociology of celebrity. But like most pop-music biographies, it has little of interest to say about the Beatles’ work; anyone in search of a thoughtful critical appraisal will find it unhelpful.

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