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Was that the Beatles I just heard? 10 songs directly influenced by the Fab Four #BeatlesWeek

The Beatles are an ubiquitous, omnipotent presence in the world of music, and you’ve only got to glance through a book like the fantastic Isle of Noises by Daniel Rachel to see that pretty much every successful contemporary songwriter still cites the Fab Four among their influences. After all, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery – supposedly… Perhaps most notably, Noel …

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Sadie HaleWas that the Beatles I just heard? 10 songs directly influenced by the Fab Four #BeatlesWeek

10 of the most underrated Beatles songs – #BeatlesWeek

You could argue that there isn’t a bad Beatles song out there, since even their silliest songs make for a great listen. Four unrefined young men from Liverpool, with not a musical qualification between them, showcased their raw talent as they pumped out incredible melodies, bizarre chord progressions and creative songs in astonishingly quick progression: 12 studio albums, 13 EPs, and 22 singles in just eight years. Find me …

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Sadie Hale10 of the most underrated Beatles songs – #BeatlesWeek
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Brandish interviews Tom Doyle, author of ‘Man on the Run’, for #BeatlesWeek

‘If you’ve been an astronaut and travelled to the moon, what are you going to do with the rest of your life?’  In 2013, Tom Doyle authored the fantastic Man on the Run: Paul McCartney in the 1970s. It traces the very interesting period of 1969-1981 – typically known for drugs busts, Wings, and financial problems – and sheds a new light …

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Sadie HaleBrandish interviews Tom Doyle, author of ‘Man on the Run’, for #BeatlesWeek
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#BeatlesWeek: the Fab Four in film & TV pop culture

Image via Fotolog As we know, there are a whole host of references to the Fab Four in popular culture – with the rosy eyes of nostalgia and fresh new generations discovering new ways to celebrate the band, their iconic status seems to gain more and more traction, confirming their universal appeal. Not only did the Beatles send tidal waves through …

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Sadie Hale#BeatlesWeek: the Fab Four in film & TV pop culture
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The best of Beatles-themed clothes & accessories #BeatlesWeek

There’s a reason why we still see Beatles references everywhere; a reason why Beatles T-shirts still wander the earth on bodies of all ages, and a reason why you won’t find any sorry old Beatles albums in the bargain buckets in HMV: the best selling band in history just never goes out of fashion. So enduringly popular are the Fab Four …

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Sadie HaleThe best of Beatles-themed clothes & accessories #BeatlesWeek
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#BeatlesWeek insight: the radio stations dedicated only to the Beatles

It’s quite incredible when a band can produce enough material, let alone be popular enough, to spawn dedicated radio stations that are still attracting listeners – an incredible fifty years after said band formed. But the Beatles have somehow managed it, and there are at least two radio stations (Beatles-A-Rama and Beatles Radio) fuelling a diet of pure Fab Four music 24 hours a …

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Sadie Hale#BeatlesWeek insight: the radio stations dedicated only to the Beatles
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Boyhood and the Beatles: The Black Album from the film #BeatlesWeek

  If you’ve seen Richard Linklater’s recent cinematic masterpiece Boyhood, you’ll be familiar with the scene in which Mason (played by Ethan Hawke), presents his son, Mason Jr. (played by Ellar Coltrane) with a gift for his 16th birthday: a compilation of songs from each Beatle’s solo career, fused in one aptly named The Black Album. I’m not going to …

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Sadie HaleBoyhood and the Beatles: The Black Album from the film #BeatlesWeek
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Top 10 Best Beatles Buys: including Vans pumps, Apple onesie and Yellow submarine wellies! #BeatlesWeek

It may have been 50 years since they first appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show and ‘broke’ America, but The Beatles legacy remains not just in their music, but in their spin-off merchandise too. T-Shirts, Russian dolls, coasters, cufflinks. You name it, you can buy it – much of it is tacky and just uninspired reproductions of album covers etc. …

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shinychrisTop 10 Best Beatles Buys: including Vans pumps, Apple onesie and Yellow submarine wellies! #BeatlesWeek
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Beatles song ‘I am the Walrus’ comes second in poll of perplexing song lyrics

The Beatles’ 1967 song ‘I am the Walrus’ has come second in a poll on the weirdest song lyrics. The so called Baffle of the Bands was put to 2,000 adult users of online music streaming service Blinkbox, and they voted the lines ‘I am the eggman, they are the eggmen, I am the walrus, goo goo g’joob’, which feature …

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Sadie HaleBeatles song ‘I am the Walrus’ comes second in poll of perplexing song lyrics
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The 12 best breakup albums – Adele, Coldplay, Fij and Bickers

A negative emotional state, when channelled, can lead to out-of-this-world musical achievements. Just think of the singles ‘Nothing Compares 2U‘ by Sinead O’Connor (and actually written by Prince), ‘Un-break my Heart‘ by Toni Braxton, Bon Iver’s ridiculously sad cover of Bonnie Raitt’s ‘I Can’t Make You Love Me’, or even the upbeat ‘We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together’ by …

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Sadie HaleThe 12 best breakup albums – Adele, Coldplay, Fij and Bickers
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The Smiths albums re-invented as theatre posters

A London-based Etsy shop has redesigned the Smiths’ iconic album covers as eye-catching theatre posters. Simon James, the man behind Standard Designs, has cleverly incorporated the original studio album designs into bold posters, featuring the fictional ‘Royal Northern Theatre’ and with the ‘opening night’ date reflecting the real-life release date of each album. Handmade with ink and 200gsm Premium Archival Paper, these are …

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Sadie HaleThe Smiths albums re-invented as theatre posters

Ten superb songs about swimming #SwimmingWeek

It might not yet be customary to don a waterproof iPod and headphones while looping the lanes at your local pool, but there are plenty of swim-themed tunes to keep you occupied on dry land. In keeping with this week’s swimming theme, we’ve put together a list of the best.   Peter Gabriel – I Go Swimming (1983) There are many …

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Sadie HaleTen superb songs about swimming #SwimmingWeek
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Everything you ever wanted to know about David Bowie’s Space Oddity

45 years old today, Space Oddity is celebrated here by Simon Poulter of the excellent What Would David Bowie Do? blog. Exactly nine days before Neil Armstrong made history by becoming the first human to make physical contact with another planetary object, the man who gives title to this very blog released a single that, 44 years later, came full …

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AshleyEverything you ever wanted to know about David Bowie’s Space Oddity
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The year’s best selling vinyl albums so far – few surprises

It’s been no secret that the music industry has been suffering of late. Sales of CDs and MP3s are down, and while some people might try and blame piracy, chances are the convenience of streaming services that don’t bring in as much profit are likely to blame. But there is a saviour on the horizon, a resurrected musical messiah: the humble …

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Tom PritchardThe year’s best selling vinyl albums so far – few surprises
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So why does everyone hate Kasabian then?

I don’t know about you, but over the past few days my social media feeds have been dominated by a series of moans about 1, Glastonbury in general and 2, Kasabian in particular. Here’s a sample ‘They’re just a cocky, indie-dance-pub-glam-rock band with a ludicrous sense of self-importance, dodgy fashion sense & poor tunes…’ Ouch! Obviously Kasabian have their fans, …

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AshleySo why does everyone hate Kasabian then?
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Anton Newcombe of The Brian Jonestown Massacre chooses his 10 top psychedelic pop songs

The Brian Jonestown Massacre, the cult guitar band who have inspired a generation of psychedelic popsters, are back with a superb new album Revelation. You can read an interview with lead singer Anton Newcombe in this month’s Shindig Magazine and also online here. To celebrate Revelation’s lunch Anton, who is well worth following on Twitter at @antonnewcombe, chose his ten …

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AshleyAnton Newcombe of The Brian Jonestown Massacre chooses his 10 top psychedelic pop songs
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The 10 greatest Glastonbury performances of all time

Apparently it is Glasto this weekend. Who knew!? Anyhow we asked some Glasto veterans to come up with their top ten performances of all time and here’s what they said Johnny Cash in 1994 – Johnny Cash playing Glasto at the height of Brit Pop. Surely this wasn’t going end well!? Nevertheless the singer’s star had been rising over the …

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AshleyThe 10 greatest Glastonbury performances of all time
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The other side of the 80s – Ben Vendetta’s Wivenhoe Park review

Personally I am with Jarvis Cocker, who takes the view that 80s were quite possibly the worst decade to be young in post war Britain. AIDS, Thatcherism, looming nuclear apocalypse, Stock, Aitken and Waterman – boy did we suffer. Still there was some great music made in the 80s and almost none of it made by fellas in frilly shirts, …

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AshleyThe other side of the 80s – Ben Vendetta’s Wivenhoe Park review
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10 albums every man should own #daveberrystyle

Music industry type Dave Berry has caused a bit of kerfuffle today by compiling a list of ten albums that every man should own. Let’s just say it is a bit of a conservative list. I think that David Cameron’s would be racier. Sure Beatles, Oasis and Portishead are great, but saying you like the Fabs is a bit like …

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Ashley10 albums every man should own #daveberrystyle
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An alternative Mercury Prize shortlist – five great albums that shouldn’t be overlooked

Tomorrow the wonderful Lauren Laverne will rip open an envelope and announce the albums that make up this year’s Mercury Prize shortlist. It will be predictably unpredictably- if that is possible – with nods to a folk album or two, a bit of jazz and classical and maybe something completely off the wall. But making the running will be the …

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AshleyAn alternative Mercury Prize shortlist – five great albums that shouldn’t be overlooked