50 years after the historic airing of The Beatles playing live on the Ed Sullivan show, Beatlemania may not make young girls scream and faint anymore, but many listeners continue to hold their music near and dear to their hearts.
Hundreds, if not thousands, of books have been written about The Beatles. I have read a mere fraction of what is available. Some paint the lads from Liverpool in holy light, while others darken the lingering shadows and tell a more sinister tale. While not all music lovers love The Beatles, most respect their profound effect on the musical landscape that continues to evolve and annoy parents to this day.
To honor my favorite band, I would like to share my top five favorite Beatles albums!
Help! has to be in my top five because of how much I love the film. It also doesn't hurt that it has one of my all time favorite Beatles songs, You've Got to Hide Your Love Away.
Sgt. Pepper is a wonderful example of the wide array of musical styles that they were so well versed in. In this album, I saw how intertwined art and music could be when done well.
3. Abbey Road
Abbey Road is a tumultous album - so much so that sometimes it hurts to listen to it. For me, a tell-tale sign of great music is that it makes me feel.
For me, this album has it all. I've listened to it so many times as a whole album that now when songs come up on shuffle, I sometimes start singing the next song on the album before the next random song starts playing.
1. Rubber Soul
Rubber Soul was my first Beatles album and will, therefore, forever be my favorite. I remember finding the cassette tape on the shelf in the library and eagerly checking it out. Hurrying home on my bike to slam it into my boombox and crank it as loud as it could go. When I found out my Mom knew who the Beatles were and had grown up listening to them, I was profoundly hurt that she could have known about something so cool and somehow not tell me about it.
What are your top five favorite Beatles albums? Which album did I leave off that you love?
I was a HUGE fan of the White album. Still love it!!!
Rubber Soul is my favorite. I have had this album in many forms over the years. Not a bad song on it. I like the Beatles from Rubber Soul to Magical Mystery Tour. It was when they were the most trippy.
4. Abbey Road
3. Sgt Pepper
2. Rubber Soul
You'll be happy to know that we are currently screening Help here in Central Library's Media Room :)
My top 3 have to be Revolver, Sgt. Pepper's, & White Album. 3 years, 3 amazing albums. I can't think of another artist or group who has accomplished that. It's the musical equivalent of the Chicago Bulls in the 90s.
Sgt Pepper's, The White Album, and Abbey Road all tie for #1!
That 3 album run was definitely impressive (actually four albums, since Magical Mystery Tour was also in there), but I think CCR's three albums released in 1969 is probably the most impressive feat (especially since it was one guy writing all the songs, instead of 3 1/4 guys in the Beatles).
My personal favorite run of albums is the Rolling Stones, from Dec 1968 to May 1972: Beggars Banquet, Let it Bleed, Sticky Fingers, and Exile on Main Street. Pure brilliance, with very little filler.
1. White Album. The most adult songwriting of any album, by far. It's hard to compare, since it has 33 or so songs, compared to the 12-14 of the others, but this one is the rawest, the most soulful. Harrison and Lennon really shine. It's also the most uneven.
3. Abbey Road
4. Rubber Soul
5. Sgt Peppers.
I read somewhere recently that the songs Penny Lane and Strawberry Fields Forever were initially planned to be on the Sgt. Pepper album. Can you imagine? I'll go along with most everyone else here, with my favorites being:
This is tough but I'd have to say:
2. White Album
3. Sgt. Pepper
4. Abbey Road
5. Rubber Soul
When I was but a wee lad, I LOVED Beatles '65, but that was just a American release with tracks culled mainly from Beatles For Sale (I think), so I won't count it.
Good point on the CCR and Stone's runs. I had no idea that CCR had such a short run. Since I'm of a bit younger ilk, it's hard to imagine what that late 60s/early 70s period was like for those who lived it. Did people know the uniqueness of that time in music as it happened? Or is it only in hindsight and seeing the fuller map of music history that it can be appreciated?
5. Abbey Road
4. Sgt Pepper
3. Rubber Soul
2. White Album