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The Beatles As Musicians: The Quarry Men through Rubber Soul Paperback – November 1, 2001


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The Beatles As Musicians: The Quarry Men through Rubber Soul + The Beatles As Musicians: Revolver through the Anthology + Beatlesongs
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 472 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press; 1ST edition (November 1, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0195141059
  • ISBN-13: 978-0195141054
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 1.2 x 6.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #296,666 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review


"Walter Everett's recent contribution to the extensive literature on the Beatles is a welcome addition to the serious musicological study of the most influential rock musicians in history. ... Everett's work is not only important in elucidating the music of the Beatles, it also serves as a model for further scholarship in rock music."-- ournal of Musicological Research


"The Quarry Men to Rubber Soul and its predacessor, Revolver Through the Anthology, are important additions to the literature of rock music study and are necessary volumes for the serious scholar of all popular music stylesa model for further scholarship in rock music."-Journal of Musicological Research


"[A] staple in the Beatles scholarly literature.... The book's method does not descend to a merely theoretical approach to the Beatles as musicians, but maintains a balance between compositional and performative aspects of their style."--Notes


About the Author


Walter Everett is Associate Professor of Music in Music Theory at the University of Michigan. He is the author of The Beatles as Musicians: Revolver through the Anthology (OUP, 1999).

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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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For these reasons I highly recommend the book for serious Beatle fans.
K. L. Uminski
I like the way this author compliments his readers' intelligence by writing about musical theory with clear detail.
BeatleBangs1964
Everett takes the music seriously and examines the development of the Beatles as musicians and composers.
Timothy A. Bennett

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

31 of 32 people found the following review helpful By Ian Hammond on November 6, 2001
Format: Paperback
Walt Everett's previous volume of THE BEATLES AS MUSICIANS (BAM) dealt with the period from REVOLVER to ABBEY ROAD. Now he completes the story with the "prequel" -- from the QUARRYMEN to RUBBER SOUL.
The reason that the project is split into two volumes is simple: to preserve all the detail which is necessary to this ambitious endeavour. It's also a "unique" project: to encompass the complete musicology, instrumentation and recording history of the most influential musical force of the last fourty years.
Everett speaks with the authority of a musicological professional and the with the unabashed admiration of a listener, providing a cross-over point for those who want to study the Beatles work from both viewpoints.
I think it's important to note that Everett updates Lewisohn quite significantly. He's used a much broader set of source material (all meticulously referenced), the results of thirty years of study and a musicians ear to make sense of the raw data provided by Lewisohn and others.
Beyond the invaluable song-by-song treatment, Everett provides a detailed description of their early years and efforts. Like the preceding volume, the book includes many examples and detailed references.
The student of the Beatles' music is blessed by a rich literature. These two volumes are among the three or four most important resources for those interested in the musicology, instruments and sessions themselves. The two books are in a class of their own and redefine the standard of rock-pop musicology.
Ian Hammond
[...]
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25 of 26 people found the following review helpful By K. L. Uminski on December 10, 2002
Format: Paperback
Yes, this book is very dense and technical, I am not a musician and was a bit lost at times, however, the author structures the book in such a way that you can skim or skip what is over your head (a lot for me) and still get something out of this book.
For me, one of the most important and rare things about this book is the way the author does not fall into the John vs. Paul biases like so many others who have written on this topic. He gives both men the written ananlysis and technical break down of their work they deserve and does not short change Paul in favor of John. This is appreciated as I believe it gives the best description of how the songwriting evolved through the talents of both men.
He also gives the same critical analysis of George Harrison's songs, this is rare indeed.
For these reasons I highly recommend the book for serious Beatle fans.
I am already burning through the second book.
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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Timothy A. Bennett on December 8, 2001
Format: Paperback
This is perhaps the most exhaustive study of Beatles' musicianship ever written. Everett takes the music seriously and examines the development of the Beatles as musicians and composers. To be sure, the book presupposes that the reader be familiar with music theory. Even if you're not (as I am not), the book still offers wonderful insights into the songs and into the Beatles' early history in Liverpool and Hamburg. And I've not found a better book to discuss the recording history and sessions. If you're serious about Beatles' music, buy this book and Everett's volume on the late Beatles (from Revolver to the Anthology) and Mark Lewissohn's Complete Beatles Chronicle and the Anthology volume by the Beatles. But Everett's book is intended for readers seriously interested in the music.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By James B. Nipe on September 22, 2002
Format: Paperback
First, let me make it clear that I really like this book (and its companion volume.) It's pretty difficult to write anything about the Beatles anymore that hasn't been written about ad nauseum already, but both of these books contain a great deal of fresh and intelligent information and insight on the Beatles's music. That said, I have a feeling that a lot of folks looking for new Beatles literature just aren't going to particularly enjoy The Beatles As Musicians. I'm a musician, but at times as I was reading this material I felt as though I might as well have been reading Latin simply because Mr. Everett is often very technical and rather esoteric in his discussions. In some ways (and Mr. Everett admittedly touches on this issue) these books seem somehow to fly in the face of what makes rock music so great in the first place...emotion, borderline chaos, an underlying sense of danger and rebellion, limited musicianship that somehow leads to innovation, chance, improvisation, etc etc. Still, as I noted, I enjoyed these books a great deal even when I didn't have the slightest idea what the author was writing about. But if you're not a musician or you are one who is largely self-taught and as technically stupid as I am, I wonder how much you'll like The Beatles As Musicians. Regardless, in appreciation of the freshness and intelligence of his work, I have to give Mr. Everett's books both five stars.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By the old guitarist on January 28, 2008
Format: Paperback
I've never seen such a detailed description of the architecture of The Beatles' music and its performance. (Where else can one find charts on the guys' vocal ranges, for instance?) And all the discussion of their instruments. And all the songlists even from the very beginning of their partnership! I enjoyed this book thoroughly.

To be truthful, considering the amount of detailed musical analysis here, it's difficult for me to imagine the average fan who is not a professional musician being able to follow a great amount of Mr. Everett's discussion. For a musician, however, it's an invigorating exercise in thinking through song structures and harmonic patterns.

I've long been interested in some of the same questions Mr. Everett poses.

Many years ago, out of simple curiosity I put on A HARD DAY'S NIGHT and played through every number in turn, mapping out the various keys and structures; I found that the fourteen songs exhibited thirteen different song forms! This just five years after Buddy Holly!

Add to that that "the boys" experimented with unusual scales, modulations and meter changes and did about everything conceivable with the harmonic sequence, modifying it bit by bit in ever more adventurous ways until finally breaking free altogether. Given all this, it was obvious from the beginning that, whether or not the members of the group were capable of reading a score, they were consciously manipulating the materials of musical construction. Their work deserves this kind of scholarly attention.

Again, GREAT book and I especially appreciate all the attention the author gave to the very early repertoire.
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