Zack Shapiro

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12.25.15 Growing Up With The Beatles 08.26.15 Rock Movies That I Need To See

Growing Up With The Beatles
1The Beatles
1962 - 1966

I have very vivid memories of the Beatles throughout my life.
2The Beatles
Rubber Soul

I was lucky enough to have parents who came of age in the 60s and worshiped the Beatles. As a testament to that fact, my Mom always told me that she and my Dad went through at least two vinyl copies of Rubber Soul after constantly playing it, front to back, for decades.
3The Beatles
Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band

My Dad fondly remembered the Summer of 1967 - the Summer of Love - which started with Sgt. Pepper being released on the 1st of June: "It was coming out of everyone's car windows that entire summer. It was inescapable."
4The Beatles

As a kid, I remember my parents had a fairly strong CD collection mainly comprised of groups from the 60s and singer-songwriters of the 70s. In our basement, there was a CD case that was nearly full of CDs, and it was often very interesting for me to look through the albums and admire the cases, artwork, and think about music. Like many of their generation, my parents owned nearly all of the Beatles albums on vinyl, but then bought a lot of the Beatles studio albums again in in the 80s when the CD remasters came out.
5The Beatles
1967 – 1970

The first song I remember hearing as a child was "Penny Lane," from "The Blue Album." The strange sounds of that song was something I couldn't place. Imagining walking around this odd world filled with strange characters - a barber sharing photographs, and obsessive fireman ("he likes to keep his fire engine clean/it's a clean machine"), which then all rolled up into some sort of circus atmosphere - needless to say, it caught my attention immediately. I was hooked.
6The Beatles
A Hard Day's Night

My favorite band growing up was the Beatles. By the time I was 10, I was making mix CDs full of Beatles songs, and I distinctly remember one had 30 tracks on it because I included so many of the short songs from A Hard Day's Night. I remember riding in the backseat of my Mom's car listening to the mix CD and especially enjoying “I Should Have Known Better” and “I'm Happy Just To Dance With You.”
7The Beatles
Yellow Submarine

I went to summer camp for at an indoor pool/rec center for a few years as a kid and really enjoyed the experience. Every so often, the camp would put the giant inflatable yellow submarine into the pool and let the kids climb onto it and slide/jump off of it. I'm not sure why more parents didn't complain because my memories of those days are kinda terrifying. What seemed like hundreds of small children would jump in the pool along with only a few camp counselors. We would push others out of the way, and struggled to reach for the counselor's hands who were on top of the plastic inflatable submarine. Getting to the top was the only way to catch our breath/not drown/escape the war zone. My parents also bought a VHS copy of Yellow Submarine which I watched as a kid when I was home sick from school.
8The Beatles
Abbey Road

I remember my parents only skipping a couple of songs with shocking regularity: After one set of “na-na-na's” in “Hey Jude,” (“okay enough with the na na na's”), the rock version of “Revolution” (“too loud”) and “I Want You (She's So Heavy)” (often skipping it just to get to play “Here Comes the Sun” at least three times).
9The Beatles
The Beatles

What is strange to me now as an adult is how my parents left some very conspicuous missing entries in their Beatles CD collection - despite owning all of the albums growing up, with Revolver and the White Album, arguably two of the bands best being absent from my childhood. I'm not sure how my life would have changed if I had been listening to tracks like “Happiness is a Warm Gun,” “Blackbird,” “Helter Skelter” or “Wild Honey Pie” growing up. I also remember flipping through my parents vinyl copy of White album and the pictures inside the booklet freaking me out and scaring me.
10The Beatles

To be honest, I wasn't even aware that Revolver was an album when I was really young mainly because my parents didn't own it. I considered the Red and Blue collections and the albums that my parents owned to be all that existed. I didn't even consider that there might be more. I really didn't end up listening to Revolver all the way through my teens because of its inaccessibility to me. Since I first listened to it, it has always had a strange mystique around it, a mystique which I began to understand more clearly as I went through college, but especially in the few years since I graduated. It's now one of my favorite albums.
11The Beatles
Magical Mystery Tour

At this moment in time, Magical Mystery Tour is my favorite album by the band, and “Strawberry Fields Forever” is my favorite Beatles song. Often overlooked in favor of the albums that surrounded it chronologically, Magical Mystery Tour is a trip and my favorite album to listen to front-to-back. I hope that because the Beatles are finally available on streaming services that those in my generation and those who are younger will listen to the Beatles and appreciate their catalog and everlasting influence on the world. I want to thank my parents for introducing me to The Beatles at such a young age, and opening the doors for me to enjoy the same music that they've enjoyed so much throughout their lives. Thanks for reading.
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