Monday, November 14, 2005

With their beatles and their Stones

Ok so the debate has arisen once again, "Who is the greatest rock band of the '60s, the Beatles or the Stones".

How about neither?

The Beatles were not a "rock" band until the holy trinity (rubber soul, revolver, Sgt. Peppers). Before that they were straight up, a “boy band” type pop band 1964 style. I love the beatles, but I dont try and pretend they were a great rock band before that; and even still ost of their music wasn't "rock".

The Stones of the '60s were a decent blues cover band, never were anything more, frequently have been something less. They didnt even touch their "artistic" growth until the late '60s and '70s.

Don’t get me wrong, I like a lot of the Stones ("Paint it black", and "Sympathy..." are two of my favorite all time songs), but they werent great musicians, great artists, or anything other than great entertainers… as far as Im concerned that’s good enough, but not great.

“The Who” were a lot more original, had better lyrics, better musicianship etc.. but weren't nearly as commercially viable as either until the late ‘60s.

If you want great British "rock", with originality, lyrics, music, and entertainment value from that time you need to look to “The Animals” and “The Kinks”; both of whom started as blues cover bands as well.

Then came Led Zeppelin who took the blues cover genre and blew it out of the water. No-ones ever done it better, before or since.

Oh, an interesting note, “The Beatles”, “The Rolling Stones”, “The Who”, “The Kinks” and “The Animals” were all founded in their canonical form within 18 months and 300 miles of each other.