The Beatles vs. The Rolling Stones  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
The Beatles vs. The Rolling Stones

In the Sixties, the Rolling Stones were the Beatles biggest rivals.

Positioning The Rolling Stones as the 'anti-Beatles' was a strategy employed by manager Andrew Loog Oldham, The Rolling Stones needed to be a rougher group compared to the "cuddly moptop" image of the Beatles at that time.

To promote the 'bad boy', Oldham generated widely-reprinted headlines like "Would you let your daughter marry a Rolling Stone?" and provocative album-cover notes such as a satirical incitement to fans to mug a blind beggar for funds to buy the album.

The rivalry was reflected in their music.

The Stones's second single, "I Wanna Be Your Man," was written for them by Lennon and McCartney, their chamber music based "As Tears Go By" closely followed "Yesterday," the Sitar on "Paint It, Black" came soon after "Norwegian Wood," and "Their Satanic Majesties Request" and "Beggars Banquet" both had similar covers (and in the former case, music,) to Beatles albums from shortly before. (Sgt. Peppers and the "White" Album respectively.)

Not only this, but the Stones "Mop Top" haircuts, Beatle boots and various other elements of their early style were quite Beatlesque. However, while the Beatles had charmed even the royal family during their early years (see perfect son-in-law), the Stones were hated by the establishment for their more overt rebellion. The Stones were seen by many as the more blues based, bad-boy antithesis to the Beatles.

Unlike some other bands in the '60s, when music was Beatle inspired by default, the Stones imagination made them more original than some of the Beatles "copycat bands" of the time. after the Beatles split, The Stones began to change their style, and are now considerably less "Beatley" than they were in the '60s.

See also

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