Everybody knows that brevity was a trademark of the early Beatles. It's also quite obvious that the band explored progressively longer song durations as they evolved. What's less obvious is the empirical data to prove those notions. So, I've created a spreadsheet containing all 211 officially recorded and released tracks and their lengths in seconds.
The Beatles' career can be broken down into stylistic periods. First, juvenilia, from 1962 to mid-1964 ('Love Me Do' through 'When I Get Home'); second, artistic adolescence, from mid-1964 through 1965 ('Baby's In Black' through 'Girl'); third, psychedelia, from 1966 through 1967 ('Tomorrow Never Knows' through 'Hello Goodbye'); and fourth, retrospective, from 1968-1970 ('The Inner Light' through 'I Me Mine'). Averaging song durations within these stylistic periods conclusively illustrates The Beatles' quest for progressively larger structures and longer durations.
Yesterday I spoke in the northwest corner of New England (Rutland, VT); tomorrow I speak in the southeast corner of New England (Hyannis, MA).
Friday, 7 October 2016, 7:00-8:00 p.m.
Hyannis Public Library, 401 Main St, Hyannis, MA
The Beatles: Band of the Sixties
Explore the music of The Beatles in this 60-minute multimedia presentation (part history and part musical analysis) spanning the full 1960's: beginning with the band's seminal visits to Hamburg, continuing through Beatlemania, and concluding with Abbey Road. The program will be supplemented with audio clips of music and excerpts from interviews with the band members.
This blog is a workshop for developing my analyses of The Beatles' music.