Was it The Beatles or Michael Jackson?



By: John Miller

6 Min Quiz

Image: YouTube

About This Quiz

One was a black American who smashed the recording industry's glass ceiling. The other was a white British band that crashed, well, pretty much the whole world. Can you match these pop facts to Michael Jackson or The Beatles?

Which artist(s) released an iconic album titled "Abbey Road"?

"Abbey Road" was the 11th studio album from The Beatles. The famous work was also, quite notably, the last album that featured all four of the original Beatles.


Which artist(s) was responsible for starting the "British invasion"?

Before The Beatles, America was content to wallow in its American bands. The Beatles cracked the market, and many other British bands followed in their wake.


Was it Jackson or The Beatles who had a groundbreaking business deal with Pepsi?

In 1983, Jackson opted to partner with Pepsi in a $5 million marketing strategy. The "New Generation" campaign was a tremendous success and the high dollar amount showed just how valuable Jackson's image had become.


Was it Jackson or The Beatles who helped to create "We are the World," a song that was sold to benefit victims of African famine?

In 1985, Jackson teamed with Lionel Richie for "We are the World," a heartfelt ballad about the interconnectedness of humankind. The song's sales raised more than $60 million for famine relief efforts.


Was it Jackson or one of The Beatles who married Lisa Marie Presley, the daughter of pop icon Elvis Presley?

In 1994, on the heels of child sex abuse allegations, Jackson had a widely publicized (and short-lived) marriage to Lisa Presley. Their union was largely regarded as a PR move meant to distance Jackson from the child abuse headlines.


Was it Jackson or The Beatles who gained fame for building the Neverland Ranch?

Jackson was no stranger to ostentatious expenditures. He bought Neverland Ranch, a retreat/amusement part that cost around $17 million. It was a literal fantasy land that didn't help Jackson's reputation as an eccentric weirdo.


Is it Jackson or The Beatles who has the best-selling album of all time?

In 1982, Jackson unleashed "Thriller," and the album became the best-selling record in world history. Decades later, it's estimated to have sold more than 60 million copies.


"Hey Jude" is a hit song by which artist(s)?

Released in 1968, "Hey Jude" is one of the biggest of many big hits by The Beatles. At a time when long songs were rare, the seven-plus minutes of "Hey Jude" added to a mystique of a song that wound up on top of the charts.


"The King of Pop" nickname applied to which musician(s)?

Michael Jackson transformed pop music and pop culture in countless ways. The King of Pop's influence will undoubtedly last for many more decades.


"The White Album" was an extraordinarily complex album by which artist(s)?

"The Beatles" is better known as "The White Album." The double album was released in 1968, and after initial mixed reviews, it's now regarded as one of the best albums ever.


Which artist(s) suffered terribly after the death of famous manager Brian Epstein?

Epstein was the pivotal manager for The Beatles. When he died in 1967, the group slowly began disintegrating.


Was it Jackson or The Beatles who recorded a song called "I Am the Walrus"?

In 1967, The Beatles released a song called "I am the Walrus," which was also part of a TV movie called "Magical Mystery Tour." It's a psychedelic tune that drew the ire of some conservative social types.


Was it Jackson or The Beatles who made the "moonwalk" famous?

Jackson was a surefooted, agile dancer who made the "moonwalk" dance move famous. He made it look so easy, didn't he? And when you tried it, well, you failed -- miserably.


Which artist(s) released an album first?

The Beatles were first, with "Please Please Me," recorded in 1963. As part of the Jackson 5, Michael recorded "Diana Ross Presents The Jackson 5" in 1969.


Was it Jackson or The Beatles who had the most number one hits?

The Beatles scored an incredible 17 number one hits during their long run. Jackon was no less impressive -- he had 13 number ones.


"The Ed Sullivan Show" helped to launch the career(s) of which artist(s)?

In 1964, The Beatles performed on TV live thanks to "The Ed Sullivan Show." With their odd visual appearance and catchy songs, they immediately struck a chord with the public.


Which artist/group was known for amazing music videos?

Michael Jackson's career skyrocketed in part thanks to imaginative music videos that emerged at a time when MTV was hitting its stride. Long-form videos for songs like "Thriller" and "Beat It" took music videos to new artistic heights.


"Billie Jean" was a hit song for which artist(s)?

Featured on Jackson's album "Thriller," "Billie Jean" became one of the singer's biggest hits. The video for the song was also groundbreaking, as it became the first music video by a black artist to enter heavy rotation on MTV.


Is is Jackson or The Beatles who has sold the most albums?

The Beatles are the best-selling act of all time. Altogether, they've probably sold upward of 800 million albums since the beginning of their careers in 1960.


Was it Jackson or The Beatles who created an album called "Off the Wall"?

In 1979, Jackson released "Off the Wall," an album that found him ditching throwaway pop songs for more complex rhythms and arrangements -- the kind of stuff that would dominate his later work. The album was a tremendous success and laid the groundwork for much bigger successes.


Which artist/group released ONE album that spawned five number-one singles in the United States?

In 1987, Jackson released "Bad," one of his most successful albums. It featured five number-one singles, the most ever from a single album.


"I Want to Hold Your Hand" was recorded by which artist(s)?

The Beatles' "I Want to Hold Your Hand" is one of the band's most iconic songs. It wasn't just a number one hit -- it helped launch Beatlemania all across America.


Was it Jackson or The Beatles who became the first to amass more than 1 billion online video views?

Decades after its release, "Thriller" is still a top draw online. It was the first online video of any kind to garner more than 1 billion views.


The "mop top" hairstyle gained popularity due to which artist(s)?

In the '60s, crew cut hair styles were still very popular. Then came The Beatles, with their shaggy "mop top" hairdos. Let the counterculture rebellion begin!


Was it Jackson or The Beatles who became the first ever to have a number one song in five different decades?

In 2014, Jackson's single "Love Never Felt So Good" hit the top of the Billboard charts. The feat made him the first musician in history to have a number one song in five different decades.


Which artist(s) had one album that spent 122 weeks on the Billboard 200?

Kids these days will never understand how Jackson owned the pop industry in the 80's. "Thriller" was in the charts for 122 straight weeks, permanently altering music culture.


Which artist(s) once held the five top spots on the Billboard chart?

In April 1964, The Beatles accomplished a jaw-dropping feat -- five of their songs stole the top five positions on the Billboard charts. It's such an incredible event that it will probably never happen again.


At one point, about 60% of all records sold in America were from which artist(s)?

By 1964, Beatlemania was reaching ridiculous heights. About 60% of all records sold in the United States were from just this one music group.


"A Hard Day's Night" was a major album by which artist(s)?

In 1964, The Beatles released "A Hard Day's Night." It was their first album, and it was a huge hit.


Which artist(s) gave up touring for good during peak popularity?

As Beatlemania peaked, the band couldn't find large enough venues equipped with good sound systems. The result? Terrible sound quality that couldn't drown out incessant screaming from crazed fans. That's just one reason The Beatles stopped touring.


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