Initially with a five-piece line-up of Lennon, McCartney, Harrison, Stuart Sutcliffe (bass) and Pete Best (drums), they built their reputation in Liverpool and Hamburg clubs over a three-year period from 1960. Sutcliffe left the group in 1961, and Best was replaced by Starr the following year. Moulded into a professional outfit by music store owner Brian Epstein after he offered to act as the group's manager, and with their musical potential enhanced by the creativity of producer George Martin, the group achieved mainstream success in the United Kingdom in late 1962, with their first single, "Love Me Do". Gaining international popularity over the course of the next year, they toured extensively until 1966, then retreated to the recording studio until their break-up in 1970. Each then found success in an independent musical career. Lennon was murdered outside his home in New York City in 1980, and Harrison died of cancer in 2001. McCartney and Starr remain active.
During their studio years, they produced what critics consider some of their finest material including the album Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band (1967), widely regarded as a masterpiece. They are the best-selling band in the history of popular music, and four decades after their break-up, their recordings are still in demand. They have had more number one albums on the UK charts, and have also held the top spot longer than any other act. According to the RIAA, they have sold more albums in the United States than any other artist. The Beatles were number one in a 2008, Billboard list of the all-time top-selling Hot 100 artists to celebrate the US singles chart's fiftieth anniversary. They have been honoured with 7 Grammy Awards,and have received 15 Ivor Novello Awards from the British Academy of Songwriters, Composers and Authors.They were also collectively included in Time magazine's compilation of the 20th century's 100 most influential people.
MembersEditThe Beatles, also known as The Fab Four, were consisted of John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr