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The Beatles and a trip through time – The Blade

The Beatles and a trip through time – The Blade

The Beatles and a trip through time – The Blade
June 12
11:02 2017

It was with some surprise, and no little consternation, I discovered last week that Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, the Beatles’ legendary record album, is now half a century old. It’s official. I won’t say June, 1967 — when it was released — feels like yesterday to me, but it certainly doesn’t seem all that long ago. I am suddenly swept back to carefree Swinging London, driving my red Italian sports car with insolent ease through the leafy streets of Kensington. I am 26. Next to me is a girl in a muslin dress with flowers in her hair. My face is disfigured by a large and revolting Viva Zapata-style moustache. I blush at the memory.To anyone under, say, 30, Sgt. Pepper probably seems as historic and quaint as the Magna Carta, or the Bill of Rights. The Beatles themselves have passed into the twilight world of myth and fantasy. They’re no more “real” today than Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. But their album became the triumphant anthem and, more sadly, the requiem of “The Swinging Sixties,” the decade of Peace and Love, Hippies and Flower Power.The “disc,” as we called such things back then, was a seductive cocktail of cynicism and innocence, nostalgia and optimism, sentimentality and satire. One or two tracks were strangely prophetic: “Will you still need me, will you still feed me, when I’m 64?” asks one song. For Paul McCartney, the answer was certainly “yes.” He really should have picked a higher number. He’s now 75, immensely rich, and still rocking on, albeit a bit creakily.But for co-author John Lennon, the answer was, tragically, “no.” He was shot dead by a maniac in 1980, when he was only 40 years old.Soon after 1967, things quickly went pear-shaped. In America, Vietnam unravelled horribly. In Europe, violent student riots threatened chaos and Marxism. Now, 50 years later, I can only lament the situation has not improved. Sure, everyone has whiter teeth and fresher breath, and our telephones can do anything but grill a hamburger.But look what else has happened.Here in Europe, we glumly view the demise of the splendid, impossible dream of a united continent. Neo-Fascist nationalism is on the rise in virtually every country of the world. In the United States, the people are deeply and dangerously divided over the merits, or otherwise, of their President.

Source: The Beatles and a trip through time – The Blade

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Martin Nethercutt

Martin Nethercutt

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