Music of Liverpool

Music of Liverpool
The Beatles are by far the city's most famous musical exports. They have sold more albums in the US than any other artist in history
The 11,000 capacity Echo Arena has held host to numerous world famous musicians and also recently, the MTV Europe Music Awards 2008
A recent number-one UK single by a Liverpudlian is by Heidi Range who belongs to the girlband, Sugababes

Liverpool has a lengthy tradition of music both classical and pop. It is well-known for The Beatles (who recorded 17 UK and 20 US number-one singles). Its pop and rock music scene has also been important in the development of a number of other bands and artists since the 1950s.



In 2001 the Guinness Book of Records declared Liverpool 'City of Pop' due to the many number one records to have emerged from the city. The most famous band to have come from Liverpool is The Beatles who played many of their early gigs at the Cavern Club.

Many sea shanties specifically refer to Liverpool, such as "Heave Away", "Liverpool Judies", and "Maggie May", which was later performed by The Beatles.

In the 1960s, the city was home to the development of the Merseybeat style of pop music, popularised by artists including Gerry & The Pacemakers. However, even before Merseybeat Liverpool had successful acts such as Frankie Vaughan, Lita Roza and Billy Fury. In the late 1970s/early 1980s, Echo & the Bunnymen, A Flock of Seagulls, Teardrop Explodes, the Mighty Wah!, Frankie Goes to Hollywood and Dead or Alive emerged.

1990s bands that enjoyed success were The Boo Radleys, The La's, The Real People, The Farm and Cast. Since 2000 bands such as The Zutons, The Wombats and The Coral have become popular. As a backlash to this regular guitar pop music, another scene far more influenced by post punk and experimental music has emerged more recently spearheaded by bands such as Ladytron, Clinic, a.P.A.t.T., Hot Club de Paris, Kling Klang, and Police Squad.

In 2008 World Museum Liverpool (in partnership the Institute of Popular Music at University of Liverpool) created The Beat Goes On exhibition charting the history of music in Liverpool in depth, from 1945 to the present day.

Music events

The city hosts the Liverpool Summer Pops each year, with a variety of artists performing over a period of three to four weeks in one main venue. Liverpool will also host the worlds first 'Live Aid Unsigned'.


The 1960s saw the emergence of Merseybeat and the now defunct Cavern Club, the late 1970s and early 1980s a punk scene centered on another club, Eric's also on Mathew Street, while 1990s dance clubs included Quadrant Park, Cream and more recently Chibuku.[1] The majority of the city's largest and most popular music venues and clubs are located at Concert Square, Mathew Street, Hardman Street and Hope Street.

Current venues include the Echo Arena Liverpool, Masque, Kazimier, Zanzibar, O2 Academy, The Magnet, and The View Two Gallery.

Recent notable bands

Record Labels

A number of independent record labels are currently active in the Liverpool scene:

  • Probe Plus Records Home of a diverse mix of local and not so local music, including most notably Birkenhead's post-punk surrealists Half Man Half Biscuit.
  • Regular Beat Recording Co.
  • Apple Records
  • The Viper Label
  • Deltasonic, now a division of Sony Music, is based in Liverpool and has released music by a number of Liverpool bands.
  • Lost at Sea Records

Number-one singles

Below is a list of songs by artists from Liverpool that attained the number one position in the UK Singles Chart.

20th Century



  • 8 January : The Scaffold - "Lily the Pink" (second peak at #1)
  • 23 April : The Beatles with Billy Preston - "Get Back"
  • 11 June : The Beatles - "The Ballad of John and Yoko"




  • 10 January : John Lennon - "Imagine"
  • 7 February : John Lennon - "Woman"



21st Century




See also


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