LETTERS: THE BEATLES; Were the Beatles really that good? Or is it just hype?

I was interested to read John Blakemore’s piece (Campaign, 1 December) on the heavily hyped Beatles Anthology series.

I was interested to read John Blakemore’s piece (Campaign, 1 December)

on the heavily hyped Beatles Anthology series.

The marketing of Beatlemania is well and truly underway and Anthology is

just the beginning. Four CDs of ‘previously unreleased’ material,

videos, books, interminable TV interviews and - who knows - even a

Beatles reunion concert, are all waiting in the wings. There is even the

ghoulish prospect of John Lennon and Freddie Mercury battling from

beyond the grave for the coveted Christmas number one spot.

We are in danger of being overwhelmed by an orgy of media manipulated

Beatles nostalgia. But how good were they really?

For me, the Beatles lost it the day I came home from school and found my

Mum singing along to I am the Walrus as she was preparing our tea.

I still remember the feeling of betrayal as I sat there sullenly toying

with a fish finger. That day, I vowed my allegiance to that other

supergroup of the time, whose penchant for cross-dressing and seducing

nubile lovelies with Mars bars seemed to be infinitely more in keeping

with my own subversive ambitions in life.

More seriously, though, theories abound as to the real motivation behind

the current Beatles revival. There is pompous talk of the Beatles and

their musical legacy to the nation and the world. There is even cynical

talk of George being down to his last pounds 10 million.

A more generous view is that the three remaining Beatles genuinely

believe that, 25 years on, they can still turn on the old magic and

rekindle the excitement of yesteryear.

Time, however, can be an unforgiving master and they would perhaps have

done better to remember John Lennon’s memorable observation that ‘Life

is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans’. For now,

I’m prepared to give them the benefit of the doubt.

David Kisilevsky, Leo Burnett, London WC2

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