level English resource. Music:
Beatles - still going strong
they broke up almost 50 years ago, the Beatles are still one of the
most popular rock groups in the world! During the six years of
their existence, they led a revolution in music. Over half a century
their records still sell in millions every year.
Beatles, as young musicians in the 1960s
- In 2014,
Hollywood made a big new documentary film about the Beatles....
almost 50 years after they broke
- In 2013, a "new" Beatles album, "On air
live at the BBC - part 2" was the group's 31st top ten album in the USA
1996, six million Beatles albums were sold during the year. That would
be a good score for a functioning
band or group; but for a group that
played together in 1970, it was incredible!
- In Britain, a study recently showed
that the Beatles are still one of
the most popular groups with people over 15 years old; and they are
still popular with teenagers too.
the world, teenagers know the tunes
and often some of the words too,
of the Beatles' most famous songs. Yesterday,
Penny Lane, Hey Jude
When I am Sixty Four
are among the best known.
Among more recent pop groups, many big names - such as Oasis,
Blur or Foo Fighters - owe a lot to
and they say so! In
their album the
Oasis did a new version of the
Beatles' song I am the
However there are
also dozens of bands all over the world which do nothing but
Beatles. There is a band in England called the Bootleg Beatles
in America called the
, a Norwegian band called Det Betales,
and even a band called Museum
in Kazakhstan; and there are many more
now do over 100
year, and they always bring in big audiences
Once, they filled the
10,000 seat Budokan stadium in Japan!
also dozens of Beatles conventions
and Beatles weekends every year, in
different parts of the world. The annual BeatleFest in America (founded
in 1974) attracts 20,000 fans each year!
Britain, the Beatles are still a big tourist attraction. Thousands of
people go to Liverpool every year, to see where it all began. In
Liverpool, they can visit the Beatles' museum, take a "Beatles' Tour"
of the city (seeing places like Penny Lane), or visit the house where
Paul MacCartney lived as a teenager.
So why did the Beatles become so popular
in the sixties, and why are they still so popular today?
They became popular because they caught the spirit of a generation.
Sixties teenagers were very different from fifties teenagers; they
wanted to change things, and escape from the rather dull
Beatles came along, offering a new type of music, with new instruments
(electric guitars). They were not the only group, of course; but they
were the best, the most original. At first they copied rock 'n' roll
songs from America. These were not well-known in England at the time,
but it was easy to get rock 'n' roll records in Liverpool, a busy port
city at the time. Sailors
brought the most popular records from America, and these became popular
with young musicians in Liverpool. Then the Beatles began writing their
own songs - and
people liked them.
When they became popular, they
did not stop doing new things; instead, they pushed back the frontiers
of pop/rock music in all directions. And where they went, others
Today people are still following them;
probably they will continue following for a long time to come.
separated - led:
front of - functioning
active - last
for the last time - incredible
hard to believe - tune
melody - owe a lot to:
are strongly influenced
by - but:
spectators - convention
symposium - found
begin - dull
boring, uninspired - sailors
seamen, people who work on ships
Decide whether the following statements are true or false:.
whether the following statements are true or false:
The Beatles are more popular today than ever. T / F
Oasis have recently copied a Beatles’ song. T / F
The Beatles once filled Japan’s Budokan stadium . T
There is a Beatles Festival every year in the USA. T / F
Paul McCartney lived in Penny Lane when he was a teenager. T / F
Penny Lane is in Liverpool. T / F
The Beatles always wrote their own songs. T / F
Before taking this article, ask your pupils to tell you about the
Some of them are sure to be able to provide some details.
Who were they? When did they exist? Where did they live?
What happened to John Lennon? And to the others?
Also ask pupils if they know any Beatles' songs? The
titles? The words? What do the titles mean? the words mean?
For copyright reasons, we cannot reproduce Beatles' texts
here but you and your students can find them on the Internet. play a
like Yesterday, Penny Lane or Norwegian Wood in class.
testing / oral expression.
Read through this article,
stopping at the l in
the text below, and asking pupils to recall the missing words in
why did the Beatles become l so
popular in the sixties, and why are they
l still so popular today?
They became popular because they l caught
the spirit of a l generation.
Sixties teenagers were very different
l from fifties
teenagers; they wanted to l change things, and
escape from the l rather
dull fifties. The Beatles came l along,
offering a new l type
of music, with new instruments. They were not the
only group, of course; but they were the l best, the l most original.
At first they copied rock `n' roll songs l from America. These
well-known in England l at
the time, but it was easy to get rock `n'
roll records in Liverpool, a busy port city. Then the Beatles began l writing
their l own songs
- and people liked
they became popular, they did not stop l doing new things;
pushed back the frontiers of pop/rock music l
in all directions.
And where they went, l others
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materials or exercises.