The Beatles Trivia
had 21 number 1 singles in the US, more than any other act.
Elvis Presley had 17 number 1 US hits, in comparison. In
the UK, the Beatles had 17 number 1 singles.
started life under the name "Scrambled Eggs."
McCartney wrote the line "Scrambled eggs, oh, my baby,
how I love your legs," but nearly left the song unfinished
because he thought he had heard the melody somewhere else.
1964 single Can't
By Me Love and the double-album The
Beatles (aka The White Album) from 1968 sold around
two million copies in the US within the first week of release.
to "Mother Mary" in the song Let
It Be is to Paul McCartney's own mother, who died when
he was just 14.
McCartney and John Lennon lost their mothers when they were
teenagers. John's mother Julia died when John was 17. She
was killed after being hit by a car driven by an off-duty
police officer. John's song Julia
is dedicated to her.
Abbey Road was
originally going to be called Everest, named after the brand
of cigarette Beatles engineer Geoff Emerick was smoking
at the time. Paul McCartney even wanted the Beatles to go
to Tibet and pose in front of Mount Everest for the album
cover! Other suggestions were Four In The Bar and All Good
Children Go To Heaven, before Ringo joked that they could
call it Abbey Road.
Harrison was officially the solo guitarist in the Beatles,
but Paul McCartney also played lead guitar on certain songs,
My Car, Michelle,
Morning Good Morning. Lennon also played lead guitar,
of course, on songs such as Get
Skelter (with Paul) and Honey
also plays drums on a few Beatles tracks, including Back
In The USSR (together with John and George), Dear
My Dear, Mother
Nature's Son and The
Ballad Of John and Yoko.
played bass guitar on nearly all Beatles songs, with only
handful of exceptions. Harrison plays the bass guitar on
and Roll Music, Birthday,
Pie and Golden
Slumbers, while Lennon plays bass on Rocky
Skelter (with Paul), Let
It Be and The
Long And Winding Road. It is also possible that George
Harrison plays bass guitar on the song She
Said She Said, since Paul McCartney cannot recall that
he attended the recording session for this track.
later said that the song Norwegian
Wood is about an affair he had, apparently with a female
journalist. He later admitted that he had several affairs
with other women during his marriage with Cynthia. McCartney
said the song title was inspired by "cheap Norwegian
11 1964, the Beatles refused to play at Gator Bowl, Jacksonville,
without guarantees that the audience would be unsegregated.
is and Indian, guitar-like instrument, which George Harrison
plays on tracks like Lucy
In The Sky With Diamonds and Getting
Better, to name a few.
The harmonium is a hand pumped organ adapted for Indian
music. The Beatles used this instrument on songs such as
We Can Work It Out,
If I Needed Someone,
The Word, Being
For The Benefit Of Mr. Kite!, Dr.
Robert, Penny Lane
and A Day In The Life.
January 1969, the Beatles performed an unannounced live
concert on the roof top of their Apple headquarters in 3
Savile Row, London. The show lasted 42 minutes, and the
group performed live versions of Get
Got A Feeling , The
One After 909, Dig
A Pony and Don't
Let Me Down. It was a cold and windy day in London,
and John Lennon complained that his hands were too cold
to play the chords.
Together was originally a political campaign song given
to Timothy Leary, who in 1969 had decided to run as governor
of California against Ronald Reagan, the future US president.
got the idea to the song Being
For The Benefit of Mr. Kite! from an old circus poster
he found in an antiques shop in Kent, England.
is the Beatles song that's been covered the most by other
artists, after Yesterday.
Frank Sintra called it the "the greatest love song
of the past fifty years."
admitted in an interview with Playboy in 1984 that the guitar
chords to the song You
Won't See Me on the album Rubber
Soul were taken from It's The Same Old Song by the Motown
group Four Tops, which was a hit in 1965.
the group released a double album entitled The
Beatles, which is often referred to as The White Album.
At one point the title for this album was going to be A
Doll's House, after Henrik Ibsen's 19th century play.
for the Beatles' Revolver
album from 1966 was originally going to be Abracadabra,
but this was dropped when the Beatles realized that another
group had used that title for a record. Other working titles
for Revolver were Magic Circle, Pendulums and Beatles On
success single Those Were The Days, released 30 August 1968
by the Beatles' own label Apple Records, was produced by
Paul McCartney. McCartney also wrote and produced Thingumybob
by the Black Dyke Mills Band, which was released by Apple
on September 6 1968. Jackie Lomax's Sour Milk Tea, written
and produced by George Harrison, was released by Apple on
the same day.
sometimes recorded their vocals on slow speed so that they
would play back faster. They did this to make their voices
sound different, often high-pitched. This recording technique
is used on many of their songs, including Lucy
In The Sky With Diamonds, Magical
Mystery Tour and Tomorrow
song Piggies was sadly
made notorious by serial killer Charles Manson, leader of
the Manson family, in 1971, because Manson painted "pig",
"pigs' or "piggy" in his victims' blood.
One of the victims was also stabbed with knives and forks,
allegedly a reference to the last verse of the song. Manson
also painted the words Helter
Skelter and "rise" (misinterpreted from Revolution
9) in blood at murder scenes.
Michelle is the most
recorded Beatles song after Yesterday.
Jan Vaughan, the wife of Paul McCartney's school friend
Ian Vaughan, who came up with the phrase 'Michelle, ma belle'.
Jan was a French teacher and she translated all the French
phrases in the song on request from Paul, who didn't speak
Goes On from the album Rubber Soul was written by Lennon
and McCartney together with Ringo Starr. Ringo also wrote
Pass Me By on The Beatles AKA The White Album, and Octopus's
Garden on Abbey Road. He also sang lead vocal on songs
such as With
A Little Help From My Friends, Yellow
Submarine and Good
the idea to the title Ob-La-Di,
Ob-La-Da from Nigerian musician Jimmy Scott, who was
in a band called Obla Di Obla Da Band.
Rigby's grave is located in the graveyard of St Peter's
Parish Church in Woolton, Liverpool, within yards of the
spot where John and Paul met for the first time in 1957.
However, the song Eleanor
Rigby has according to Paul McCartney nothing to do
with this gravestone. McCartney has said the name Rigby
is taken from a shop in Bristol and that Eleanor is taken
from actress Eleanor Brown, who starred in the Beatles movie
from Rubber Soul, one can hear Paul and George constantly
repeat the word "tit" in the background. John
also breathes heavily several places. This could have been
done to emphasize on the fact that the song had sexual references.
the recording of Paperback
Writer, McCartney got the idea that John and George
should sing the French nursery rhyme 'Frere Jacques' (Father
Jacob) as backing vocals, and this can in fact be heard
in the song.
refers to Dr. Robert Freyman, a German 'speed doctor' in
New York, who was known for injecting "vitamin"
shots - laced with amphetamines - to his celebrity patients.
wrote the melody to the song When
I'm Sixty Four when he was just 15 years old. He didn't
write the lyrics before 1966, the same year as his father
Jim turned 64. Paul McCartney turned 64 on June 18 2006.
got the idea to the song She's
Leaving Home in February 1967 after reading an article
in the Daily Mirror about 17-year-old Melanie Coe who had
run away from home. What McCartney didn't know at the time
is that he had actually met Melanie three years before on
the TV program Ready Steady Go.
1967 was the first time the members of the Beatles and Pink
Floyd met. Beatles engineer Norman Smith was producing Pink
Floyd's debut album The Piper At The Gates Of Dawn at Abbey
Road Studios, literally next door to where the Beatles were
recording. He brought his young group to meet the Beatles
at around 11pm. Beatles Biographer Hunter Davies described
the meeting as an exchange of "half-hearted hellos."
However, the two groups may have influenced one another
musically. Some claim there are similarities between the
organ sounds on Beatles' instrumental track Flying,
recorded in September 1967, and Pink Floyd's Instellar Overdrive.
Apparently there are also similarities between the Mellotron
on Flying and Chapter 24.
Mann saxophonist Mike Vickers conducted the orchestra that
played with the Beatles on the infamous All
You Need Is Love live recording for the global TV show
Our World in June 1967.
is an electronic keyboard instrument which can imitate the
tonal qualities of various instruments. It has its own amplifier,
but it can only play one note at a time. John Lennon plays
this instrument on the song Baby
You're A Rich Man which was the B-side on the single
All You Need Is Love.
author Lewis Carroll inspired two of John Lennon's most
memorable songs. I
Am The Walrus was partly inspired by Carroll's The Walrus
And The Carpenter, and Lucy
in The Sky With Diamonds was inspired by the books Alice
In Wonderland and Through A Looking Glass.
Truffle was, believe it or not, inspired by his friend
and then Cream-guitarist Eric Clapton's chocolate addiction.
Most of the chocolate names such as "Creme Tangerine"
and "Coffee Dessert" were taken from a chocolate
box in Britain called Mackintosh's "Good News".
in the crowd", in which Lennon refers to in the song
Is A Warm Gun, was taken from a newspaper story about
a man who was arrested by the police for having mirrors
on his toe caps to look up womens' skirts at football matches.
Penny Lane was released
together with Lennon's Strawberry
Fields Forever as a double A-sided single in February
1967. Both songs were originally written for Sgt.
Pepper, but none of them ended up on the album. The
reason for this was that Capitol Records in the US desperately
wanted a new Beatles single for the American market. The
Beatles generally didn't want songs that had been released
as singles to feature on the albums as well. The Penny Lane/Strawberry
Fields Forever single was an unusual release because both
songs were about childhood memories from Liverpool.
Inner Light was the first George Harrison composition
to appear on a British Beatles single. It was chosen as
the B-side on the Lady
Madonna single. The Inner Light was initially recorded
in Bombay, and the lyrics are based on a poem from the holy
book Tao Te Ching.
73 million viewers - approximately 40% of the US population
at the time - tuned in to watch the Beatles perform at the
Ed Sullivan Show on February 9 1964.
During the week of April 4, 1964 The Beatles held the top
five places on the Billboard Hot 100 in the US. No other
group or artist has ever managed to match this feat.
Drummer Jimmy Nichol replaced Ringo Starr on several concerts
during The Beatles' Australian tour in 1964, because Ringo
was being treated for pharyngitis in hospital.
In 1965 Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II awarded The Beatles
an MBE, (Member (of the Order) of the British Empire), for
"services to the export industry." Lennon returned
his MBE in 1969 in protest over Britain's support of the
The Beatles performed the first stadium concert in modern
rock, playing at Shea Stadium to a crowd of 56,000.
Lennon said in an interview in July 1966 that The Beatles
were "more popular than Jesus." His comment sparked
protests around the world. Lennon later apologized for the
comment, saying that he was trying to explain the impact
The Beatles performed their last concert before paying fans
in Candlestick Park in San Francisco on 29 August 1966.
They stopped touring because they wanted to concentrate
on recording music instead.
Beatles manager Brian Epstein died of a drug overdose on
August 27 1967, at the age of thirty-two. Some claim it
was suicide. Epstein was a homosexual, and rumors say he
was attracted to Lennon. Homosexuality was illegal in Britain
at the time, but the laws were amended and relaxed shortly
after Epstein died. John Lennon may have made references
to Epstein in three of his Beatles songs; Do
You Want To Know A Secret, Baby
You're A Rich Man and You've
Got To Hide Your Love Away.
The Beatles became the first band ever globally broadcast
on television, in front of over 200 million people worldwide,
on June 25 1967. The event took place at the Abbey Road
Studios in London. Among the guests where Mick Jagger and
Keith Richards from The Rolling Stones, Marianne Faithfull,
Eric Clapton and Keith Moon from The Who.
In 1968, The Beatles spent the early part of the year in
Rishikesh, Uttar Pradesh, India studying transcendental
meditation with the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. Starr left India
after a week, and Paul after a month.
The Beatles' last ever live performance was in January 1969
on the rooftop of the Apple building in Savile Row.
After the release of Come
Together, music publisher Morris Levy sued John Lennon
for copyright infringement of his song You Can't Catch Me.
As a result, Lennon agreed to record covers of Levy's songs
for his solo album Rock 'n' Roll so that Levy could receive
When Beatles' Sgt.
Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band album was released
in 1967, it became the best-selling album of all-time. The
album now stands at #13 on the list of best-selling albums
The Guinness World Records has claimed the Beatles have
the biggest all-times sales for a band. This is based on
an accumulative sales figure provided by record company
EMI who said the Beatles sold over a billion records by
The Beatles officially broke up in April 1970.
John Lennon was shot dead by Mark David Chapman, a mentally
ill fan, on December 8, 1980.
George Harrison died of cancer on November 29 2001.