Classic Rock Corner

10 Beatles Urban Legends: True Or False?

When you're a band like the Beatles - who first appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show on Feb. 9, 1964, 47 years ago today - tall tales and urban legends spring up all around... mostly because when a band is a worldwide cultural phenomenon, anything can seem possible or even plausible.

Some of the following ten items were just miscommunications, others were deliberate hoaxes, and still others are just nuttier than squirrel doo delusions. Amazingly, some of them are even true!

The answers are after the jump... let's see how you do.


1. Despite not containing a single performance by John, Paul, George or Ringo, an album called Best of the Beatles was released in 1965. There was nothing the band could do to stop it.

2. Even after all these years, four Beatles songs remain unreleased: "Colliding Circles," "Left is Right (And Right is Wrong)," "Pink Litmus Paper Shirt" and "Deck Chair."

3. John Lennon's song "Because" is Beethoven's "Moonlight Sonata" played backwards.

4. George Harrison does not play lead guitar on "While My Guitar Gently Weeps."

5. Paul McCartney died in a car crash in 1966, and was replaced by lookalike William Campbell to keep the band going and stave off fans' grief. Clues to the switch are hidden in lyrics and album artwork.

6. An early Beatles compilation was accidentally called a copulation instead of a compilation.

7. During the band's famous Sullivan appearance, the crime rate dropped dramatically.

8. "Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds" is a veiled reference to LSD.

9. The Beatles (The White Album) inspired the murders perpetrated by Charles Manson and his family.

10. Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr are planning a concept project with Roger Daltrey and Pete Townshend of The Who.

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Jef Rouner (not cis, he/him) is a contributing writer who covers politics, pop culture, social justice, video games, and online behavior. He is often a professional annoyance to the ignorant and hurtful.
Contact: Jef Rouner