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Was there a Beatles 'backlash' in the late 70s??

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by Rockerbox, May 12, 2014.

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  1. Rockerbox

    Rockerbox Forum Resident Thread Starter

    London, Kentucky
    I was on YouTube watching Ringo's 1978 TV special and somebody left this in the comments:

    "It's amazing to me that they had to hire people to get a crowd for Ringo at the beginning of the show, such was the strange and fortunately short-lived anti-Beatles sentiment of the late 70s".

    Now, I was only 8 years old in 1978 so I can't say I know but I just can't believe there ever was a 'backlash' against the Beatles in the late 70s. Capitol were still issuing Beatle comps and of course all of the albums were mainstays in the stores. Still heard Beatle songs on the radio. Of course Paul was huge as a solo artist in the late 70s, George was still commercially viable to an extent.....The only thing I can think of is that Ringo's records by 1978 were flopping and going straight into the cut-out bins.....But I don't see how they would've had to 'hire' people to mob him even though his records were flops by then.

    Was the person who posted the above comment on YouTube misinformed or just exaggerating?

    The closest thing I ever thought there was to a Beatles 'backlash' was in 1966 after John's infamous 'Jesus' comment.
  2. Thurenity

    Thurenity Listening to some tunes

    I'm just a little older than you and I don't recall any backlash in the 1970's, at least in the US and the Northeast, specifically.

    Ringo solo, on the other hand? It's entirely possible that he wasn't heavily popular at the time. George as well, to a certain extent. But Paul was doing well and John had his comeback album in the works, of course. But the early to mid 1980's I'd say that there was a bit of a lull in Beatledom, but there was an uptick after Live Aid, then George's pop album and then I would think the Beatles CD remasters kept things moving well into Anthology.
    Rockerbox likes this.
  3. yasujiro

    yasujiro Forum Resident

    AFAIC there was never any backlash in Japan either.
    They were so popular and 'something else'.
    theMess and Rockerbox like this.
  4. dkmonroe

    dkmonroe A completely self-taught idiot

    There was no "backlash." It's probably fair to say that the Beatles' solo careers were largely in eclipse though - Lennon was nowhere to be seen for several years, Wings popularity from the Band On The Run era has slipped, and George and Ringo's occasional albums were not great successes. The Beatles music was still very popular though. I don't remember meeting a lot of dedicated Beatles freaks in that time but I never heard them being slagged off. When I was in high school, late period Beatles songs were often featured on CHOM-FM in Montreal. They weren't the biggest thing on the radio but they weren't absent.
    theMess, Laibach, AlienRendel and 2 others like this.
  5. rockledge

    rockledge Forum Resident

    right here
    I call BS. No way anyone would ever have needed to hire anyone for an audience for Ringo.
    Comet01, Sneaky Pete, helter and 3 others like this.
  6. adm62

    adm62 Forum Resident

    Toronto, Canada
    Yes, they were relatively uncool from late 70s until their albums were released on CD, all solo stuff was pretty much slated in that period too. Macca's late 80s tour probably helped too.
  7. Chuckee

    Chuckee Forum Resident

    Upstate, NY, USA
    I was a Beatles fan went to High School in mid to late 70s, weren't many Beatles fans, but there were a few. Hardly
    part of the hip crowd.
  8. rockledge

    rockledge Forum Resident

    right here
    Did you go to an all nerd school?

    As I remember ( although I was long out of school) nothing or nobody was "cool" then. It was "cool" to be anti everything.
    But among people who truly liked music, the Beatles were still going strong.
  9. Chuckee

    Chuckee Forum Resident

    Upstate, NY, USA
    Stuff like Kiss in the earlier years, then Bad Company, Led Zepplin and whatever newer bands, etc.
    Don't remember solo stuff coming up hardly at all.
    Laibach, Moonbeam Skies and Rockerbox like this.
  10. Zeki

    Zeki Forum Resident

    There wasn't any backlash. Nope.
    Comet01 and Rockerbox like this.
  11. Spacement Monitor

    Spacement Monitor Forum Resident

    I was in high school in the late '70s too. There was no backlash, just the fact that a band that had been broken up for seven or eight years wasn't as popular as actual existing bands like Zep, Pink Floyd, or the Eagles. dkmonroe nailed it, the individual Beatles' solo careers were largely in the toilet at that point. Paul was the closest thing to a hitmaker, and he was putting out stuff like "Silly Love Songs." I remember several of the Beatles reissues being fairly popular at parties, particularly Rock 'n' Roll Music.
  12. Summer of Malcontent

    Summer of Malcontent Forum Resident

    The Beatles were still a big deal, certainly, but the solo releases were weak in those years, the official catalogue was stultified by a series of increasingly desperate / random thematic compilations, and the hippest young bands were explicit in their condemnation of the band as irrelevant (the Pistols' no doubt manufactured justification for 'sacking' Glen Matlock; the Clash's "No Elvis, Beatles or Rolling Stones in 1977"). They were severely uncool, and why not? Your mum's favourite song at the time was 'Mull of Kintyre'. In 1977/78, even Abba were more dangerous than Paul McCartney. Horrible as it is to say, Lennon's death changed their critical fortunes quite drastically.
  13. Chris from Chicago

    Chris from Chicago Experience is simply the name we give our mistakes

    Yeah...there was a small one. But it was because they were still so popular. Their music was considered the holy grail. I remember listening to WLS radio in Chicago, late 70's, maybe early 80's...Larry Lujac...he cracked on the air about having to still play so many Beatles records. I didn't care. He'd never sway me. I was young. Just learning what kind of music I liked. And while it may not have been confined to the Beatles...they sure seemed to have the formula figured out.
    D.B. and Rockerbox like this.
  14. Frank

    Frank Forum Resident

    Yes there was a bit of Beatle fatigue in the late 70s. I was at the age where that kind of thing mattered. It was slightly unpleasant keeping the faith.
  15. Edgard Varese

    Edgard Varese Royale with Cheese

    Te Wai Pounamu
    An actual conversation I had in 7th grade (1978), with a kid who noticed that I had a pic of the Beatles in my school locker (the Let It Be cover):

    Other kid: "You know, it's not cool to have that in your locker."
    Me: "What? The Beatles aren't cool?"
    Other kid: "The Beatles are fine, it's just not cool to have the picture in your locker."

    Shortly afterward the locker got broken into and bye bye pic. I'm from MA if that helps. ;)
    D.B. and Moonbeam Skies like this.
  16. Scooterpiety

    Scooterpiety Current operator of the Freedonia peanut stand

    When I was in high school in the late '70s it was generally considered uncool to like the Beatles.
  17. AFOS

    AFOS Forum Resident

    Well the 70's were a backlash against the 60's in many ways with the 50's nostalgia and punk rock - so many big 60's bands were out of favour in the late 70's. It turned around with the 80's and of course brit pop. But also remember the bands (except the Pistols/Clash)of that time (late 70's) worshipped them - The Jam ripped off Taxman for Start.
    theMess likes this.
  18. bluemooze

    bluemooze Forum Resident

    Frenchtown NJ USA
  19. Michael

    Michael I LOVE WIDE S-T-E-R-E-O!

    not that I remember...
  20. Michael

    Michael I LOVE WIDE S-T-E-R-E-O!

    and we all still had hope for a reunion concert!
  21. Michael

    Michael I LOVE WIDE S-T-E-R-E-O!

    it's never uncool to love the Beatles...they are the beginning of it all.
    Tommy Withatee likes this.
  22. Holy Diver

    Holy Diver Forum Resident

    No. Only a disco backlash. :D
  23. GV1967

    GV1967 Forum Resident

    Northeastern US
    Oh yes. I remember it well. Being a 10-18 year old Beatles fanatic in the late 1970's through the mid 1980's did not sit well with the disco/new wave/metal crowd which had taken over all the NYC public schools I attended. In retrospect, I now understand that dopey kids cannot stand seeing someone with a passion so, naturally, they have to drag it down. To say I had/have a deep resentment towards that entire scene, is an understatement. However, I am glad I followed my heart as I knew I was right.
  24. vonwegen

    vonwegen Forum Resident

    The backlash happened… in 1966, after the "Bigger than Jesus" manufactured controversy.

    Key indicator to look for: Record-burning bonfires.
  25. Moonbeam Skies

    Moonbeam Skies Forum Resident

    Phoenix, Arizona
    Kids liked the Beatles, but they were no longer the cool band to talk about as I recall. I recall the Stones being quite divisive, some kids absolutely hated them. The Doors, however, were as cool as Led Zeppelin. This would be late '70s early 80s in suburban Detroit, middle school in middle class Allen Park.
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