So now you know that this was released before Let It Be, but it is actually the last Beatles album ever recorded. Most of Get Back/Let It Be was recorded before these sessions… not all, but a lot. And that album was a scattered, war-torn mess.
This one came out in the UK on Sept. 26, 1969 and a week later in the US, and is quite the swan song. If you’re going out, go out on top, I say! I am sure I have overused it this week, but it is hard not to mention the word “iconic” when discussing The Beatles, especially in regards to this album, and it’s picture perfect cover that countless tourists and fans have attempted to reenact. Every detail was done right on this one!
From the go to source Wikipedia: “It was produced and orchestrated by George Martin for Apple Records. Geoff Emerick was engineer, Alan Parsons was assistant engineer, and Tony Banks was tape operator.” Yes, we will discuss the amazing Alan Parsons soon, and no, it is not the Tony Banks from Genesis.
“Abbey Road is widely regarded as one of The Beatles’ most tightly constructed albums, although the band was barely operating as a functioning unit at the time”
“Come Together” – I love this grungy Lennon masterpiece.
“Something” shows Harrison really coming into his own as a brilliant songwriter and was inspired by James Taylor’s “Something In the Way She Moves.” I did not know that. The song is lush and gorgeous and makes me really miss George. Same with “Here Comes the Sun.” George’s spirituality was quite something. I cannot wait for the Martin Scorsese documentary, Living in the Material World, that comes out October 5th on HBO!!!
“Because” was inspired by Beethoven’s “Moonlight Sonata” and is a trippy favorite of mine, as is the 16-minute medley that consists of “You Never Give Me Your Money,” “Sun King,” “Mean Mr. Mustard,” “Polythene Pam,” “She Came in Through the Bathroom Window,” “Golden Slumbers,” “Carry That Weight” and the climax, “The End” (which has quite a literal and ironic meaning in light of things).
I always knew I liked this album, but re-listening reminded me just how much!
The Beatles were a remarkable band whose impact on modern music and the history of Rock n’ Roll cannot be measured… or perhaps it can… It was HUGE! I know there are folks out there who are Beatles haters, and I just don’t get it. Not everything they did was gold, but to not even have an appreciation for the band is crazy. They are simply the greatest Pop/Rock band of all time and listening to almost all of the catalog has solidified that for me. What a joy.
I am still working on my own personal order of favorites, but here is something in the meantime…
In 2003 Rolling Stone put out an issue with “The 500 Greatest Albums Of All Time.” Here is how the Beatles fared:
1) Sgt. Pepper
5) Rubber Soul
10) The Beatles (White Album)
14) Abbey Road
39) Please Please Me
59) Meet the Beatles
86) Let It Be
384) A Hard Day’s Night
I LOVE THIS BAND!!!