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  • Music in Liverpool in the 1960s

    The 1960s saw a revolution in youth culture in Europe and America. The end of the Second World War triggered a desire of many young people to make the most of their freedom which caused many to perish in the fights.

    The Beatles

    The 1950s was a decade that saw many towns and cities being rebuilt, and as the 1960s emerged there was greater prosperity with the young generation exploring new avenues in the entertainment world. This was certainly the case in the music industry, and the 1950s rock and roll performers had paved the way for musicians around the world to explore.

    Liverpool was an ideal city to produce music in. Being an old industrial region, the people had an edge to them that is often synonymous in producing great musical acts. The city was also full of migrants from both inside the British Isles and overseas. This blending in different cultures was represented in the music that was being produced in the city.

    Liverpool is famed for being home to the Beatles. The group, which consisted of John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr, are arguably the best band that has ever played.  The band first formed in 1958 playing rock and roll music and spent the first three years learning their trade by performing shows in both Liverpool and Germany.

    However, their time came between 1963 and 1970. From the release of their first album “Please Please Me” the band has gone on to sell more than 800 million records around the world, which is more than any other group.

    This is even more remarkable considering that the band split up in 1970 and they never reformed. In the space of seven years they achieved more number 1 albums in the UK than any other musical act has ever did. Their rise in fame caused “Beatlemania”, with their appearances being greeted by hysterical fans.

    The song writing duo of Lennon and McCartney produced 63 hit singles and they are simply one of the best song writing duos of all time. Sadly, their musical differences resulted in the separation of the band and they never got to make up their differences, before John Lennon was gunned down and killed in 1980.

    Gerry and the Pacemakers

    They were not the only Liverpool musical performers who were topping the charts during this period. Cilla Black was a female singer who performed in the Liverpool clubs before being managed by Brian Epstein who also managed the Beatles.

    During the 1960s she had eleven top ten hits including two number one singles, such as “Anyone Who Had a Heart” which sold more records than any other singles produced by a female British artist during the 1960s. Following her career, she then went on to become one of the nation’s most popular television presenters, appearing for more than 50 years on screen.

    One of the most famous songs about Liverpool was performed by another of the city’s stars, Gerry and the Pacemakers. “Ferry across the Mersey” was released in 1965 and although it did not reach number 1, it has stood the test of time and today it still is synonymous with the city.

    The group actually had more success with other singles they released, and they were the first musical act to reach number 1 with the first three singles they ever released. Their third single “You’ll Never Walk Alone” has been adopted by Liverpool FC plus many other football clubs around the world.

    The city, along with Birmingham and London, was at the centre of the growth of rock and pop music during the 1960’s.