Yesterday, April 17, was Tax Day in the US. Always a day of angst. Today, the day after, I noticed that CNN had created a playlist for those who needed a soundtrack to watch their money getting flushed with each entry on the dreaded 1040 form. What I found interesting was that three of the suggested tunes were Beatle tunes (One was a cover): Taxman, Can’t Buy Me Love, and Money (CNN suggested the original by Barret Strong).
Two of these, Can’t Buy Me Love and Money are opposites. The latter is a pure declaration of the need for more money. The former says: “I don’t care too much for money…” I always found it interesting that the Beatles recorded both.
Now, I know that musical artists aren’t bound to propagate only one philosophy. Certainly, they must broaden their scope and appeal to a wider audience (someone say: “Taylor Swift”). Not everyone is a money-grubber who believes that only those things that money can buy are worthy. Likewise, not everyone is a wide-eyed idealist that believes love can survive on only a wish and a dream.
But one could never accuse the Beatles of wishing and dreaming. They worked hard for the money (thank you, Donna Summer, also on the list), and created songs that have endured decades. Much like the Great American Songbook, the Beatles songbook seems to be poised to cross over any style that pop music can throw at it. It is because of that endurance that even the estates of Lennon and Harrison continue to benefit.
You might not be able to buy love, but you certainly can buy land and houses. We all know that money can not buy one happiness, but it can purchase space in which one can be happy. If that’s the case, then The Beatles, those living and the estates of Lennon and Harrison, certainly have a lot of room.
The net worth of The Beatles is really impossible to ascertain, but it is not beyond imagination to suggest $3 billion. “Money don’t get everything, it’s true; What it don’t get, I can’t use…”
However, as a Christian pastor, I must ask this: At what price? Between the four Beatles, there are nine marriages (Although the idealist in me would like to think that the number would be seven had Linda McCartney lived). Lennon and McCartney spent much of the seventies in a bitter, sometime public, feud. I will not even discuss the alcohol and drug abuse issues.
For those of us who are believers in the Lordship of Jesus Christ and His saving work on the cross, money is just one more worldly item to have to deal with. I will admit, there are times when I wish I had a bit more to deal with, but, on the whole, we make it just fine.
I may never have $30,000 in the bank, let alone $3 billion, but I do have much more – a place reserved for me in eternity where, thankfully, the only currency is God’s love.