Only 10 hours of recorded music? Seriously, why did The Beatles bother?

How long do you think it would take if you played every song released by The Beatles between 1963 and 1970 back-to-back?

Although it’s not easy to establish an exact or definitive answer, there’s general agreement that it would come to somewhere in the region of ten hours. If you put them on in alphabetical order, this would mean that you’d get from ‘Across The Universe’ to ‘You’ve Got To Hide Your Love Away’ in something considerably shorter than one of your waking days.


This is the band that many would regard as the greatest in history, and they had no less than seven years to do their stuff. In some ways, it doesn’t sound a lot, does it? Around six hundred minutes. Ten hours.

So what do you think? Say you were John Lennon, in the studio in 1963 to record ‘Please Please Me’, and someone said, you know what, I wouldn’t bother if I were you. It’s going to be seven years before you release ‘The Long And Winding Road’ and after all that work, all that graft, it’ll still only amount to ten hours of material. I’d call it a day now if I were you.

Well thank goodness this didn’t happen. In my humble opinion our world would have been all the poorer without the music of The Beatles, who started their careers with the most positive of attitudes – perhaps this is what got them through their estimated 10,000 hours of playing live in Hamburg before they even started proper recording, in fact.

When you see early press conferences given by Messrs Lennon, McCartney, Harrison and Starr, you see confidence, and you get the feeling that these four twenty-somethings knew they’d got what it would take.

Just imagine what would have happened if they hadn’t taken a positive approach, however. Things would have been very different.

So how about you, today, then? Positive or negative outlook? It’s fairly easy to predict how things will pan out if you opt for the latter, but choose the former and who knows where things could go? I’ve got a feeling.

5 thoughts on “Only 10 hours of recorded music? Seriously, why did The Beatles bother?

  1. Thank you for reminding me about positive thinking. This is just what I needed to hear today – my house in Carlisle has been flooded by the recent heavy rain and local rivers bursting their banks. However, no loss of life and the rest is just ‘stuff’.

    1. Really sorry to hear that Melanie. I’ve just been seeing pictures on BBC news which look shockingly bad in Cumbria. I’m down the road in Manchester & mainly clear. I really admire your outlook and wish you well in the clear up.

      Your comment took me back to my parents’ philosophy which when I thought my world was caving in would ask ‘Is anyone hurt? No- well that’s just ‘stuff’ which we’ll sort out’. Great philosophy and outlook.

  2. I always do my best to have a positive attitude – imagine the hours put into raising children – if you didn’t have a positive attitude and love what you do would you bother!

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