The Beatles: Best-Ever Songs

The songs found on this list are the best-ever songs performed by The Beatles.

According to Wikipedia, The Beatles were an English rock band formed in Liverpool in 1960. They became one of the most commercially successful and critically acclaimed acts in the history of popular music. The band’s best-known lineup consisted of John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr. Rooted in skiffle and 1950s rock and roll, the group later used several genres, ranging from pop ballads to psychedelic rock, often incorporating classical and other elements, in innovative ways. In the early 1960s, their enormous popularity first emerged as “Beatlemania,” but as their songwriting grew in sophistication, they came to be perceived by many fans and cultural observers as an embodiment of the ideals shared by the era’s sociocultural revolutions.

The Beatles built their reputation playing clubs in Liverpool and Hamburg over a three-year period from 1960. Molded into a professional act by manager Brian Epstein, the creativity of producer George Martin enhanced their musical potential. They gained popularity in the United Kingdom after their first single, “Love Me Do”, became a modest hit in late 1962. They acquired the nickname the “Fab Four” as Beatlemania grew in Britain over the following year, and by early 1964 they had become international stars, leading the “British Invasion” of the United States pop market. The group toured extensively around the world until August 1966, when they performed their final commercial concert. From 1966 on, they produced what many critics consider their finest material, including the innovative and widely influential albums Revolver (1966), Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band (1967), The Beatles (1968), and Abbey Road (1969). After their break-up in 1970, the ex-Beatles each found success in individual musical careers. Lennon was murdered in 1980, and Harrison died of cancer in 2001. McCartney and Starr remain active.

The Beatles are the best-selling band in history, with sales of over one billion units estimated by EMI Records. They have had more number-one albums on the British charts and sold more singles in the UK than any other act. According to the RIAA, as of 2012 they have sold 177 million units in the US, more than any other artist, and in 2008, they topped Billboard magazine’s list of the all-time most successful Hot 100 artists. As of 2012, they hold the record for most number-one hits on the Hot 100 chart with 20. They have received 7 Grammy Awards from the American National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, an Academy Award for Best Original Song Score and 15 Ivor Novello Awards from the British Academy of Songwriters, Composers and Authors. They were collectively included in Time magazine’s compilation of the 20th century’s 100 most influential people.

Criteria for this ranking:

• Groundbreaking

• Sing-able melody

• Memorable and catchy

• Superb singing, lyrics, guitar work

Best Songs

I Feel Fine

Michelle

Yesterday

You’re Going to Lose That Girl

Girl

Here, There, Everywhere

Revolution

While My Guitar Gently Weeps

Eleanor Rigby

I’ve Just Seen a Face

In My Life

Strawberry Fields Forever

She Loves You

Something

Love Me Do

A Hard Day’s Night

Penny Lane

All You Need Is Love

Norwegian Wood

Hey Jude

Get Back

Let It Be

Back in the U.S.S.R.

Here Comes the Sun

Ticket to Ride

The Long and Winding Road

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I urge you to email me (dom@walkablestreets.com) or leave a comment if you have a suggested addition or subtraction from this list. Or if you have any other thoughts about this list.

About

Each list in this blog contains my own personal opinions based on my personal experiences. I acknowledge that there may be a need to add or subtract from these lists (or to create a new subject list), and I welcome such suggestions. The lists are not ordered from higher to lower quality. Each list is a work in progress.

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About Dom Nozzi

Urban designer, Complete Streets instructor, smart growth specialist, town planner, walkable & bikeable streets & trails specialist, writer, editor, speaker, world adventurer, skier, kayaker, SCUBA diver, bicyclist, hiker, dancer, book reader, urbanist. Make my own beer, wine, pasta, bread. Live by the motto that it is the things we do NOT do that we later regret. Life is too short to not live it to the fullest.
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