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The Byrds aren’t guaranteed to get under anybody’s skin upon first listen. Okay, nobody’s guaranteed, but with the Byrds, it just might take a little extra time to bridge the gap between their immense critical reputation and one’s personal impression of them. When I first subjected myself to a general overview of the band via a best-of collection, I know I wasn’t much impressed. When they first emerged upon the popular music scene, the Byrds were perceived as a sort of collective electrified take on Dylan, even if they themselves never intended to be seen as such, playing innocent Beatlesque pop and tapping into the Greenwich Village folk tradition occasionally.

Of course, making vintage revolutionary synthesis is one thing, and writing good songs is frequently another. For that matter, the band, from the very onset, boasted at least three fully competent songwriters, even if their competence didn’t always shine through at the same time. And that’s your answer for the Byrds’ success here and now. Americana”, in stark contrast to the Beatles or those bands, both British and American, that kept staring into the Beatles’ mouths for too long. But that’s hardly a limiting definition.