I'm sure that 1965 "when Paul Died" was said in jest, right?Gosh, I don't remember my post on this, but I do have to say that the Beatles are the best based on song-writing abilities.
Zeppelin is a far superior band, and wrote lots of my favorite music, but the Beatles are just the kings. The only band that can come close is the Stones, but the Beatles are still head and shoulders over them. I'm not a big fan of early Beatles, but from 1965 on, when Paul died, they made the most iconic songs ever.
First off I have to say that I am an unapologetic Zep head, and get tired of hearing my whole life that the Beatles are the greatest rock band in history. But is this really true?
Led Zeppelin Vs. The Beatles
Who Is The Rock-N-Roll G.O.A.T.?
2nd off I want to say that the Beatles were a great band who were way ahead of their time. Their songs will ALWAYS be remembered as some of the greatest ever written. Someone would be hard pressed to find a greater collaboration as was the case with McCartney and Lennon.
I will state my case for Zeppelin below, and would love to hear yours.
The first thing that has to be looked at between these two great bands is with record sales. The Beatles have far more record sales than do Zeppelin, but their is more to this issue than meets the eye.
1. The Beatles released 19 studio albums. That's 10 more then Led Zeppelins 9 studio albums. It was a common practice in rock for a band to record an albums than go on tour for almost a year to promote it, than come off of the road, again record an album, than back on tour again etc..
The Beatles stopped touring in 1966, and this enabled them to release multiple albums in a year to everyone else's 1.
2. Singles. Who can possible count all of the 45 rpm records that the Beatles sold to millions of love struck teeny bopper girls. Led Zeppelin did not release singles. If you wanted to hear them you had to buy the album. Imo, this is what created what is referred to as album rock.
So, before record sales can be used to say who is the greatest of the two, than you have to remove 10 of the Beatles studio albums to match Zeppelins 9 studio albums. Also, you have to remove the millions and millions of 45 rpm records that the Beatles released because Zeppelin did not release singles.
The next issue I would say would be promotion. The Beatles were the most heavily promoted band in history. To this day I can't think of another band that came close. The Beatles name and images were on just about everything. Their were Beatles dresses, record players, wigs, stamps, key chains, guitars, mirrors, watches, pendants, bowling balls and on and on and on. 6 months before they came to America posters were plastered everywhere proclaiming The Beatles are coming!, The Beatles are coming!. Radio d.j.'s were almost non stop declaring the same thing.
In contrast Led Zeppelin were the complete opposite, and the least commercial band in history. They wanted their music to speak for them, and not some gimmick. They even refused to appear on television. Interviews with Zeppelin were rare. Their is an early interview though were John Bonham the Zep drummer points out that people went to see the Beatles live just to look at them. You couldn't even hear the ban play. But to Zeppelin it was about the music they and not the image.
The last thing would be about musicianship and talent. So, lets compare these bands with that in mind.
1. Singer. I really don't think even die hard Beatles fans would disagree that Robert Plant is a far greater singer than any one of the fab four.
2. Guitar. George Harrison was an awesome player, and much better after the Beatles broke up. However, Jimmy page is legendary. I have never seen a list of the greatest guitar play of all time that didn't have him at 1 or at least top 3.. He was a riff machine. I doubt there is a Harrison tune that page cannot play, and probably many Page pieces that Harrison just could not play.
3. Bass. I think Paul McCartney was a good bass player, even better than he got credit for. But was no match for John Paul Jones.
4. Drums. Do I even really have to point this out. John Bonham is considered the greatest rock drummer in history. He played an 11 piece kit and used every single piece of it. What he was able to do still has most pro drummers in awe of him. If you've never heard "Moby Dick" than I suggest you give it a listen. Ring Starr? I guess you could he took a 3 piece kit as far as you could take it, but he could have easily have been replaced and not have been missed.
Okay, I guess this is the end of my case that Led Zeppelin not the Beatles are indeed the Rock-N-Roll G.O.A.T.. Their 300 million album sales I would venture to say out sales the Beatles if you take what I said above and even the game up the way it should be done for a true measure of who the greatest are.
What do you say?