7 Surprising Facts About ‘The Beatles’ That You Probably Never Knew!

Posted on August 8, 2014 in Culture-Vulture

By Mayank Jain:

The Beatles – how does one even go about introducing them. They came for a decade and changed the landscape of music forever. It has been 44 years since they formally broke up but Beatlemania has been here forever. 1960s was their age, they came in and became the greatest and the most influential act ever.

They were the spearheads of the “British Invasion” in the United States pop market. The band is still an enigma and it shall always be. Half a century later, there is no other band like The Beatles and their journey in itself was one of a kind. Peppered with mighty ups and haunting downs, The Beatles saw it all in their 10 years of music and when the band broke up, it left a void which only their tracks can fulfil.

There’s always a chance that you don’t end up knowing everything about them because there was just so much that they managed to accomplish. Here are some of the facts about the greatest bands of our time which are relatively hidden from the public eye:

1. The Beatles Were Kicked Out Of Germany For Lighting A Condom On Fire

Their days were tough. They lived out most of the 1960’s in Hamburg, Germany behind the screen of a cinema called Bambi Kino. As Paul McCartney described it, “We lived backstage in the Bambi Kino, next to the toilets, and you could always smell them.”

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They had made a plan to leave Bambi Kino but before they had left, they lit a condom on fire in the room where they stayed and the owner got them arrested.

2. Their One Of The Most Successful Phases Was During Their Stay In Rishikesh, India

The Beatles arrived in India with their wives, girlfriends and assistants, eager to join the Transcendental Meditation training at the ashram of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. The teaching centre was composed of meditation caves which were situated in the valleys near Rishikesh.

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They wrote many songs while in India and eighteen of those songs were recorded for The Beatles (the white album) and two songs appeared on the Abbey Road while others were used in solo projects. All in all, they produced close to 30 songs while in India.

3. The Band Officially Broke Up In Disney Land

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Yes, that’s true. John Lenon’s former girlfriend, May Pang has recounted the moment when Lenon officially ended The Beatles in her book, “Instamatic Karma”:

“When John hung up the phone, he looked wistfully out the window. I could almost see him replaying the entire Beatles experience in his mind. He finally picked up his pen and, in the unlikely backdrop of the Polynesian Village Hotel at Disney World, ended the greatest rock ‘n’ roll band in history by simply scrawling John Lennon at the bottom of the page.”

4. John Lennon Beat Up His Wives

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The revered icon of hippies and pop enthusiasts, John Lennon, hasn’t exactly been the gentlemen amongst the women in his life. His first wife Cynthia as well his second wife, Yoko Ono have both been victims of his rage at some point in their lives. Lennon has also possibly done this to other women in his life since his emotional state wasn’t very stable. He is reported to have emotionally abused his son as well.

5. They Almost Bought An Island In Greece To Start Their Own Community

Circa 1967, The Beatles almost bought an island near the coast of Athens, Greece. They planned to set up their own private community away from the scramble of fans and stardom. John Lennon is said to be the one at the forefront of the whole plan. But, they finally gave up the idea to lock themselves away from the civilization.

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McCartney recounts in an interview given for a book, “It’s a good job we didn’t do it, because anyone who tried those ideas realized eventually there would always be arguments, there would always be who has to do the washing-up and whose turn it is to clean out the latrines.”

6. ‘Twist And Shout’ Is Probably Good Because Of John Lennon’s Cold

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Twist and shout has been widely considered as the best rock vocal ever recorded. The story behind it is where it gets interesting. John Lennon had cold while he was recording the song and his voice sounded like “sandpaper”. He opened up a carton and gargled noisily with warm milk just to get the recording done.

7. None Of The Beatles Knew How To Read Music

They might have been the best band ever. They are the only ones who have held all the top 5 spots on the billboard at the same time. But, Beatles couldn’t read sheet music.

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Getting ready for The Abbey Road photo shoot.

In an interview with Playboy in 1980, John Lennon said: “I think Paul and Ringo stand up with any of the rock musicians. Not technically great – none of us are technical musicians. None of us could read music. None of us can write it. But as pure musicians, as inspired humans to make the noise, they are as good as anybody”. 

To know more about this story and what I think, follow me on Twitter at @mayank1029

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