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24 September 2014
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The Beatles
A 'where have you been for the past 40 years?' guide to who's who in the fab four...

John Lennon The man who formed the most succesful band of all time, and one of the icons of the rock 'n' roll era. John spent the final years of his life devoting his time to raising son Sean, but was roused to make music again after hearing the B-52's immortal kitsch classic 'Rock Lobster'. The '52's wailing vocals reminded him so much of banshee-throated wife Yoko, he felt the pop world was finally ready for them to make their comeback album. Well, he was half right...
Post Beatles peak: The everyman anthem for peace that is 'Imagine'.

Paul McCartneyno 2PAUL McCARTNEY
The other half of the most succesful songwriting partnership of the 20th Century. Frustratingly, Paul's talents lie in writing and recording both fabulous life-affirming music AND irritating cheesy old nonsense. The best example of this duality in action must be Paul's soundtrack song for the James Bond film 'Live & Let Die'. Most of the song is glorious, but Paul can't resist a clever-clever reggae section, which all but pulls the wheels off this rock juggernaut. And the less said about that 'Freedom' song, the better...
Post Beatles peak: The bagpipe-drenched ode to Scotland 'Mull of Kintyre'..

no 3George HarrisonGEORGE HARRISON
George was the first to tire of being a Beatle, found his contributions to Beatles songs overlooked in favour of John & Paul's and even left the band a couple of times before they finally split. Ironically, two of George's most famous Beatle songs don't even feature him on lead guitar. 'While My Guitar Gently Weeps' gets its corrosive guitar magic from Eric Clapton, and the reverse fret-magic on 'Taxman' comes courtesy of Paul! No wonder they called George the quiet one...
Post Beatles peak: The triple album splurge of held-back Beatles-era songs 'All Things Must Pass'.

Ringo Starrno 4RINGO STARR
To some, the finest exponent of minimalist pop drumming, to others a very, very lucky man with a big nose. Ringo's appeal at the height of Beatlemania was so great that at one point he was receiving four bags of fan mail to every one bag sent to the other three. Ringo claimed that he made sure he was the most popular by raising his drum kit up so he was on eye-level with Paul, John and George, and moving his cymbals so everyone could see him better. That this approach worked speaks volumes about the standards of attractiveness among beat group members at that time.
Post Beatles peak: His run of early '70s top ten singles, and the original - never bettered - voice-overs on Thomas the Tank Engine.

no 5George Martin THE FIFTH BEATLE
Many people have laid claim to this title over the years. The first fifth Beatle was definitely Stuart Sutcliffe, seeing as there were five in the band at the time. Since then, shedloads of people have applied for this mythical job including Pete Best, Brian Epstein, George Martin, Murray the K, Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, Derek Taylor, Neil Aspinall, Magic Alex, Billy Preston and even Ernie Wise. Noel Gallagher? Your name's not down, you're not coming in...

  The Gardener's Delight  
  Mary, Mary quite contrary, how does your Top 5 grow ....  
  Fatboy Jims & Lardy Ladies  
  The singers who took their sex, drugs & rock 'n' roll with a slice of cake...  
  Britpop Busters  
  Five facts about the legendary Britpoppers...  
  Filmed In Technovision  
  Enter the world of experimental telly according to the Pet Shop Boys
  Punk Pretenders?  
  Perfectly Punked? Nah, at heart they were all a bunch of old softies...  
  Front Bottom!  
  We name and shame the bands named after a lady's privates...
  Bring Your Gran  
  Golden oldies who joined forces with youthful pop people...  
  2003's Demented Predictions  
  TOTP2's bonkers ball-gazer predicts this year's pop ups and downs...  
  The Erasure Story  
  Trip through the history of the UK'S top synth duo...
  Rubbish Xmas Songs  
  What not to play at your Christmas party...  
  Bag Of Bones  
  Legends that should have eaten their greens. Bring out the lard...  
  Banned by the BBC  
  The songs that were just too hot to handle ...  
  Fortune Smiles Upon Them  
  Be they works of genius, accident or stealing, these songs are lucky to be alive.  
  Elton John  
  Drugs, Diana, dirty deeds. It's a wonder that he's still standing...  
  Inxs-ive Lifestyles  
  We examine Australia's biggest export since Fosters...  
  Poodle Rockers  
  Gravity-defying perms and spandex trousers, they're the Poodle Rockers...
  Welcome to the house of factual fun...  
  Status Quo  
  We take a trip down memory lane with the mighty Quo...  
  Pop Activists  
  Top pop people who fight for the rights...  
  Singing Drummers  
  Drummers who got sick of looking at the lead singer's wiggling bum.  
  Rolling Stones  
  Headline-grabbing moments from Britain's lippiest band.  
  David Bowie  
  Follow Dave's top 5 looks through the years - including the mullet action!  
  Hot Chocolate  
  Indulge yourself in the pleasure that is Errol and the gang  
  "Secret" Drug Songs  
  "It was inspired by this crazy picture my son painted." Yeah, right...  
  Abba-nother Go  
  You were going to call it what? 5 working titles from the Super Swedes...  
  In & Out Of Bed With Madonna  
  Collaborations for the Queen of Pop that didn't end at 5.30...  
  Songs that gave a whole new meaning to 'Born To Hand Jive'...  
  For those that glam-rocked, we all salute you...  
  A trip through the lambchop elite's glory story...  
  '80s Revival Hell  
  Alas, some pop icons just wouldn't let that decade go.  

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