Today is the 50th anniversary of The Beatles’ first single, “Love Me Do.”
Oct. 5, 1962 marked the beginning of an eight-year period that would transform the four young Liverpudlians into rock/pop music demigods. Having survived the test of time, The Beatles’ music is incredibly popular around the globe to this day.
Despite its popularity, the group’s recordings have not yet found their way onto streaming music services such as Spotify.
Nevertheless, you can still get your “Fab Four” fix on the web. The Internet is swarming with Beatles fans just like yourself, who have produced plenty of content with which to engage. Here are six ways to enjoy The Beatles online.
1. Learn How to Sing Beatles’ Vocal Harmonies
Most bands are lucky to have one great singer. The Beatles had four. Not only could every member of the band sing, the band had a unique ability to create lush vocal harmonies.
From the following video, you can learn how to sing all three parts of the song “Because,” from the album Abbey Road. This song is arguably The Beatles’ most impressive and complex in terms of harmonizing. The same singer recorded a video of himself singing all three parts at once, if you need to hear how it sounds before learning the individual parts.
Now go find two euphonic friends, study this video for an hour, then impress all your buddies at the next party.
2. Baby, You Can Drive The Beatles’ Cars
Well actually, a double-decker bus, a yellow submarine, the “Magical Mystery Tour” bus and a car. Play the game Ticket to Ride, from Free Addicting Games.
In the game, you’ll be responsible for picking up John, Paul, George and Ringo from various locations in Liverpool, then driving the quartet to the airport so they can fly to New York and play a concert at Shea Stadium. The game doesn’t boast Xbox 360-quality graphics, but it’s still fun. It takes about five minutes to play, but you can always replay it to beat your best time.
If this game is any indication of reality, there are a lot of ducks in the streets of Liverpool. Try not to run them over! (Note: You will need Adobe Shockwave to play this game. If you don’t already have the software, the game will prompt you to download it for free.)
3. Find Out What The Beatles Were Doing on This Day 50 Years Ago
This one is for the true Beatles fanatic. On his website Beatle.net, Beatles expert Bruce Spizer updates the trivia section weekly, explaining what The Beatles were doing 50 years ago.
Between 1998 and 2011, Spizer wrote eight books on The Beatles’ recording career, so he’s well-qualified to present a great deal of arcane information about the band. This is an especially good time to start following Spizer’s updates, given the 50th anniversary of The Beatles’ debut release.
4. Show Off Your Beatles Knowledge by Acing Beatles Quizes on Sporcle
Now that you’ve learned all there is to know about The Beatles from Bruce Spizer, head over to Sporcle to put that knowledge to use. Sporcle has over 500 Beatles-themed quizzes, as well as a very engaging format.
The quizzes are timed, and as you type in correct responses, the list of answers fills itself out. Can you name all six people who have been in The Beatles? Did you know “Torquete et Clamate” means “Twist and Shout” in Latin? Sporcle will help take your Beatles trivia to the next level.
5. Feast Your Eyes on Beatles Fan Art and Photography
Many Beatles images have become iconic over the years, the album covers of Abbey Road and Let It Be, to name a couple. The Internet contains a wealth of Beatles photographs and also a great deal of fan art inspired by those photographs.
6. Watch a Beatles Documentary
The documentary The Beatles Explosion is available for free on Hulu (which unfortunately means you’ll have to endure a few commercials).
There is very little music in the film; rather, it is almost entirely clips of reporters interviewing members of the band throughout the early years of their careers. Basically, it is nearly two hours of drolleries at the expense of the American and British press. When one reporter tells the group that Detroit University is trying to “stamp out The Beatles movement” and “they think your haircuts are un-American,” John Lennon promptly replies, “Well, that was very observant of them, because we aren’t American.”
Between the interview scenes, you’ll watch cuts of shrill-screaming young fanatics. You can watch the entire documentary below. Look for a particularly interesting scene about 24 minutes from the end, when a reporter interviews a Minnesota police officer about his experience with The Beatles.