Saturday, January 16, 2010

Paul McCartney on "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds"

"This one is amazing. As I was saying before, when you write a song and you mean it one way, and then someone comes up and says something about it that you didn't think of -- you can't deny it. Like 'Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds,' people came up and said, very cunningly, 'Right, I get it. L--S--D' and it was when all the papers were talking about LSD, but we never thought about it.

"What happened was that John's son Julian did a drawing at school and brought it home, and he has a schoolmate called Lucy, and John said what's that, and he said 'Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds' -- so we had a nice title. We did the whole thing like an Alice in Wonderland idea, being in a boat on the river, slowly drifting downstream and those great cellophane flowers towering over your head. Every so often it broke off and you saw 'Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds' all over the sky. This Lucy was God, the big figure, the white rabbit. You can just write a song with imagination on words and that's what we did.

"It's like modern poetry, but neither John nor I have read much. The last time I approached it I was thinking, 'This is strange and far out,' and I did not dig it all that much, except Dylan Thomas, who I suddenly started getting, and I was quite pleased with myself because I got it, but I hadn't realised he was going to be saying exactly the same things."

"Eleanor Rigby"

"Eleanor Rigby" is a song by The Beatles, originally released on the 1966 album Revolver. The song was primarily written by Paul McCartney. With a double string quartet arrangement by George Martin, and striking lyrics about loneliness, the song continued the transformation of the group, started in Rubber Soul, from a mainly pop-oriented act to a more serious and experimental studio band.


As is true of many of McCartney's songs, the melody and first line of the song came to him as he was playing around on his piano. The name that came to him, though, was not Eleanor Rigby but Miss Daisy Hawkins. In 1966, McCartney recalled how he got the idea for his song:
“I was sitting at the piano when I thought of it. The first few bars just came to me, and I got this name in my head... 'Daisy Hawkins picks up the rice in the church'. I don't know why. I couldn't think of much more so I put it away for a day. Then the name Father McCartney came to me, and all the lonely people. But I thought that people would think it was supposed to be about my Dad sitting knitting his socks. Dad's a happy lad. So I went through the telephone book and I got the name McKenzie.”

Others believe that Father McKenzie refers to 'Father' Tommy McKenzie, who was the compere at Northwich Memorial Hall.

McCartney originally imagined Daisy as a pre-pubescent girl, but anyone who cleaned up in churches would probably be older. If she were older, she might have missed not only the wedding she cleans up after but also her own.
A promotional poster for the single from the UK.

McCartney said he came up with the name Eleanor from actress Eleanor Bron, who had starred with the Beatles in the film Help!. Rigby came from the name of a store in Bristol, Rigby & Evens Ltd, Wine & Spirit Shippers, that he noticed while seeing his then-girlfriend Jane Asher act in The Happiest Days Of Your Life. He recalled in 1984, "I just liked the name. I was looking for a name that sounded natural. Eleanor Rigby sounded natural."

The Beatles finished the song in the music room of John Lennon's home at Kenwood. John Lennon, George Harrison, Ringo Starr, and their friend Pete Shotton all listened to McCartney play his song through and contributed ideas. Starr contributed the line "writing the words of a sermon that no one will hear " and suggested making "Father McCartney" darn his socks, which McCartney liked. Shotton then suggested that McCartney change the name of the priest, in case listeners mistook the fictional character in the song for McCartney's own father.

The song is often described as a lament for lonely people or a commentary on post-war life in Britain.

McCartney couldn't decide how to end the song, and Shotton finally suggested that the two lonely people come together too late as Father McKenzie conducts Eleanor Rigby's funeral. At the time, Lennon rejected the idea out of hand, but McCartney said nothing and used the idea to finish off the song, later acknowledging Shotton's help.


"Eleanor Rigby" does not have a standard pop backing; none of the Beatles played instruments on it, though John Lennon and George Harrison did contribute harmony vocals. Instead, McCartney used a string octet of studio musicians, composed of four violins, two cellos, and two violas, all performing a score composed by producer George Martin. For the most part, the instruments "double up"—that is, they serve as two string quartets with two instruments playing each part in the quartet. Microphones were placed close to the instruments to produce a more vivid and raw sound. George Martin asked musicians to play without vibrato and recorded two versions, one with and one without, the latter of which was used. McCartney's choice of a string backing may have been influenced by his interest in the composer Antonio Vivaldi. Lennon recalled in 1980 that "Eleanor Rigby" was "Paul's baby, and I helped with the education of the child ... The violin backing was Paul's idea. Jane Asher had turned him on to Vivaldi, and it was very good." The octet was recorded on 28 April 1966, in Studio 2 at Abbey Road Studios and completed in Studio 3 on 29 April and on 6 June. Take 15 was selected as the master.

George Martin, in his autobiography All You Need Is Ears, takes credit for combining two of the vocal parts, having noticed that they would work together contrapuntally.

The original stereo mix had Paul's voice only in the right channel during the verses, with the string octet mixed to one channel, while the mono single and mono LP featured a more balanced mix. On the Yellow Submarine Songtrack and Love versions, McCartney's voice is centered and the string octet appears in stereo in an attempt to create a more "modern" sounding mix.


"Eleanor Rigby" was released simultaneously on 5 August 1966 on both the album Revolver and on a double A-side single with "Yellow Submarine" on Parlophone in the United Kingdom and Capitol in the United States. It spent four weeks at number one on the British charts, but in America it only reached the eleventh spot.

The song was nominated for three Grammies and won the 1966 Grammy for Best Contemporary (R&R) Vocal Performance, Male or Female for McCartney. Thirty years later, George Martin's isolated string arrangement (without the vocal) was released on the Beatles' Anthology 2. A remixed version of the track was included in the 2006 album Love.


* Paul McCartney – vocal
* John Lennon – harmony vocal
* George Harrison – harmony vocal
* Tony Gilbert – violin
* Sidney Sax – violin
* John Sharpe – violin
* Juergen Hess – violin
* Stephen Shingles – viola
* John Underwood – viola
* Derek Simpson – cello
* Norman Jones – cello
* George Martin – producer, string arrangement
* Geoff Emerick – engineer


Though "Eleanor Rigby" was not the first pop song to deal with death and loneliness, according to Ian MacDonald it "came as a quite a shock to pop listeners in 1966." The Shangri-Las' 1964 hit "Leader of the Pack" gave a rendition of star-crossed lovers ending in one of their deaths, but the subject matter was purely in a romantic vein and far from a serious look at loss. In fact, in the mid-1960s, the pop format hardly seemed the right vehicle for such a message; pop music consistently had a more rosy outlook on life. Nevertheless, "Eleanor Rigby" took a bleak message of depression and desolation, written by a famous pop band, with a sombre, almost funeral-like backing, to the number one spot of the pop charts. "Eleanor Rigby" marks a midpoint of sorts in the Beatles' evolution from a pop, live-performance band to a more experimental, studio-oriented band though the track contains no obvious studio trickery. Whereas many of the other tracks on Revolver lend themselves to a rock group, "Eleanor Rigby" in a sense is a precursor to the psychedelic tracks of Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. The subject matter also reflects a band in transition. The bleak lyrics were not The Beatles' first deviation from love songs, but were some of the most explicit. Eleanor Rigby's lonely existence shares more in tone with the sense of detachment of "A Day in the Life" than with "I Want to Hold Your Hand".

It is the second song to appear in the Beatles' 1968 animated film Yellow Submarine. The first is "Yellow Submarine"; it and "Eleanor Rigby" are the only songs in the film which the animated Beatles are not seen to be singing. "Eleanor Rigby" is introduced just before the Liverpool sequence of the film, and its poignancy ties in quite well with Ringo Starr (the first member of the group to encounter the submarine) who is represented as quietly bored and depressed.

In some reference books on classical music, "Eleanor Rigby" is included and considered comparable to art songs (lieder) by the great composers. Howard Goodall said that the Beatles' works are "a stunning roll-call of sublime melodies that perhaps only Mozart can match in European musical history" and that they "almost single-handedly rescued the Western musical system" from the "plague years of the avant-garde". About "Eleanor Rigby", he said it is "an urban version of a tragic ballad in the Dorian mode.

In a 1967 interview Pete Townshend of the Who commented "I think "Eleanor Rigby" was a very important musical move forward. It certainly inspired me to write and listen to things in that vein" Jerry Leiber said, "The Beatles are second to none in all departments. I don't think there has ever been a better song written than 'Eleanor Rigby.'" In 2004, this song was ranked number 137 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 greatest songs of all time.

Historical artefacts

In the 1980s, a grave of an Eleanor Rigby was discovered in the graveyard of St. Peter's Parish Church in Woolton, Liverpool, and a few yards away from that, another tombstone with the last name McKenzie scrawled across it. During their teenage years, McCartney and Lennon spent time "sunbathing" there; within earshot distance of where the two had met for the first time during a fete in 1957. Many years later McCartney stated that the strange coincidence between reality and lyric could be a product of his subconscious, rather than being a meaningless fluke. The actual Eleanor Rigby was born in 1895 and lived in Liverpool, possibly in the suburb of Woolton, where she married a man named Thomas Woods. She died on 10 October 1939 at age 44, which, because 1940 was a leap year, was exactly one year to the day before Lennon was born. Whether this Eleanor was the inspiration for the song or not, her tombstone has become a landmark to Beatles fans visiting Liverpool. A digitized version was added to the 1995 music video for the Beatles' reunion song "Free as a Bird."

In June 1990, McCartney donated a document dating from 1911 which had been signed by the 16-year-old Eleanor Rigby to Sunbeams Music Trust, instantly attracted significant international interest from collectors because of the significance and provenance of the document. The nearly 100-year-old document was sold at auction in November 2008 for 115,000 pounds. The Daily Telegraph reported that the uncovered document "is a 97-year-old salary register from Liverpool City Hospital." The name E. Rigby is printed on the register, and she is identified as a scullery maid.

Cover versions

Studio versions

The following artists have recorded "Eleanor Rigby" in a variety of styles, at least 61 released on albums by one count:

* Doodles Weaver recorded a comedic version for the record 'Feetlebaum Returns! that was also included on the album Doctor Demento's Delites.
* Joan Baez's 1967 version, included on her Joan album, was sung to classical orchestration.
* P.P. Arnold sang a cover of the song on her album First Cut.
* Ray Charles released a version as a single and on the album A Portrait of Ray (1968).
* Bobbie Gentry released a version on her 1968 album Local Gentry.
* Tony Bennett released a version on his January 1970 album Tony Sings the Great Hits of Today!. Bennett was dismayed by having to record contemporary, rock-influenced material under pressure from his record company. His partly-spoken take on the song was poorly received, with music writer Will Friedwald saying it was recited as if it were Thomas Gray's Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard and Time magazine describing it as "Shatneresque," making reference to Star Trek actor William Shatner's legendarily bad 1968 interpretation of "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds."
* Aretha Franklin released a version on the album This Girl's In Love With You (1970) and as a single.
* Jazz musicians such as The Jazz Crusaders, Wes Montgomery (on his 1967 album A Day in the Life), Stanley Jordan (on the album Magic Touch, 1985) and John Pizzarelli recorded it as an instrumental, with lead-guitar taking over the vocal line.
* Australian band Zoot released a psychedelic rock version in 1970that reached #4 on the Australian charts and went gold after its 1980 re-release.
* Jamaican musician, singer, songwriter and producer Harris "B.B." Seaton with the band The Gaylads recorded a reggae version of this song in 1972.
* Brazilian composer/singer Caetano Veloso recorded it on the album Qualquer coisa (1975).
* In 1975, Belgo-English progressive rock band Esperanto covered the song on their album Last Tango.
* Ethel the Frog covered this song on a single recorded for EMI in 1979.
* The Jerry Garcia Band played an instrumental version as part of a medley with "After Midnight".
* Realm covered this song on their 1988 album Endless War.
* Junior Reid released a dancehall version of the song on his 1990 album One Blood.
* The Violet Burning released this song on their 1992 album, Strength.
* Wayne Johnson recorded an acoustic version of this song for his 1995 acoustic album Kindred Spirits.
* Kansas recorded this song on their 1998 album Always Never the Same.
* Godhead recorded this song on their 2001 album 2000 Years of Human Error.
* Pain recorded this song on their 2002 album Nothing Remains the Same.
* Liane Carroll includes a version on her 2005 album Standard Issue
* Thrice included a cover of the song in their album If We Could Only See Us Now in 2005.
* Twisted Sister guitarist Eddie Ojeda recorded a cover version of the song for his 2006 solo album Axes 2 Axes. Dee Snider performed the vocals.
* A cover of the song by David Schommer (feat. David Jensen) can be found on the soundtrack for the 2006 movie Accepted.
* Elevator Suite included a cover in their 2007 self-titled album.
* In 2008, David Cook, winner of the seventh season of American Idol, sang the song on the show and later released a single via iTunes.
* In 1982, Twelfth Night recorded a 80s-style cover of this song for a single, and later included it as one of the bonus tracks on an extended edition of their Fact and Fiction album.
* The John LaBarbera Big Band recorded a version of this song on their CD On the Wild Side.
* Mark Wood released a version of this song on his 2003 album These Are a Few of My Favorite Things with his wife, Laura Kaye, on vocals.
* Ilan Rubin covered this song during his Coup recording sessions and released it as a free download.

Live performances

* The Four Tops recorded this song for their 1969 album The Four Tops Now!.
* The Supremes recorded this song in a live medley, together with The Temptations.
* Panic at the Disco has covered the track live, but it was never studio recorded.
* Acceptance played a live version of the song alongside Yellowcard's violinist Sean Mackin when Acceptance and Yellowcard toured in late 2005.
* Australian a cappella group The Idea of North sing a jazz version of Eleanor Rigby on their Live at the Powerhouse album.
* An electronic version appears on the Tangerine Dream album Dream Encores.
* During their 2008 US summer tour, the Dave Matthews Band inserted "Eleanor Rigby" into a jam in their song The Dreaming Tree.


* In 1994, Irish singer Sinéad O'Connor sampled the song's chorus for her song, "Famine" which appears on Universal Mother. The song was later remixed and released as a single in 1995, and was a Top 40 UK hit.
* In 2004, Brooklyn rapper Talib Kweli released "Lonely People", using "Eleanor Rigby" as the main sample.
* In 2006, mashup artist team9 created a remix of "Eleanor Rigby" using Queens of the Stone Age's "In My Head".
* Lupe Fiasco samples "Eleanor Rigby" on "Go Go Gadget Flow", the third track from his 2007 release The Cool

A-side: "Yellow Submarine"
Released: 5 August 1966 (UK), 8 August 1966 (U.S.)
Format: 7"
Recorded: Abbey Road Studios, 28–29 April; 6 June 1966
Genre: Symphonic rock
Length: 2:06
Label: Parlophone (UK), Capitol (U.S.)
Writer(s): Lennon/McCartney
Producer: George Martin


Beatles News

"Don't Pass Me By"

"Don't Pass Me By" is a song by the Beatles from the double album The Beatles (also known as the White Album). It was Ringo Starr's first solo composition, and he sang lead vocals.


Its earliest mention seems to be in a BBC chatter session introducing "And I Love Her" on the Top Gear program in 1964. In the conversation, Starr is asked if he wrote a song and Paul McCartney proceeded to mock it soon after, singing the first line "Don't pass me by, don't make me cry, don't make me blue", but stopping after that. But, the song is unmistakably "Don't Pass Me By" with very slightly different lyrics. The song employs a three-chord blues structure.


The song was recorded in three separate sessions in 1968: 5 and 6 June, 5 and 12 July. Despite references to the song in 1964 as "Don't Pass Me By," it was called "Ringo's Tune (Untitled)" on the 5 June session tape label and "This Is Some Friendly" on the 6 June label. By 12 July, the title was restored.

During a lead vocal track recorded on 6 June, Starr audibly counted out 8 beats, and it can be heard in the released song starting at 2:30 of the 1987 CD version.

George Martin arranged an orchestral interlude as an introduction, but this was rejected. In 1996, the introduction was released as the track "A Beginning" on The Beatles Anthology 3 CD.

The line "I'm sorry that I doubted you, I was so unfair, You were in a car crash and you lost your hair" is cited by proponents of the Paul is dead urban legend as a clue to Paul's fate; the line "you lost your hair" is claimed to be a reference to "When I'm Sixty-Four", which was written by Paul McCartney.


* Ringo Starr – lead vocal, drums, piano, sleigh bell
* Paul McCartney – piano, bass
* Jack Fallon – violin

Cover versions

The song has been covered by alt-country band The Gourds and by the Southern rock band, The Georgia Satellites on their 1988 album, Open All Night and by The Punkles on their 2004 album, Pistol. The Rutles's songs "Easy Listening" and (to a lesser extent) "Livin' In Hope" are based on this song.

Album: The Beatles
Released: 22 November 1968
Recorded: 5 June 1968
Genre: Country rock
Length: 3:50
Label: Apple Records
Writer: Starkey
Producer: George Martin


Friday, January 15, 2010

Beatles News

Liddypool: Birthplace of The Beatles

When it comes to the Beatles’ history, Liverpool lore is a bit like Hollywood: the legend seems to be told and printed more often than the truth.

Liverpudlian and Beatles historian David Bedford has penned an entertaining and informative new book on the Beatles that will not only give readers a glimpse of the real Liverpool, but hopes to separate fact from fiction.

Growing up in post-1960s Liverpool – or “Liddypool” as John Lennon renamed it – one cannot avoid The Beatles. They are “Here, There and Everywhere.” Much to Bedford's dismay authors were writing about The Beatles’ hometown, and getting their facts wrong.

“To understand The Beatles, you have to understand Liverpool,” says Bedford, who spent nearly a decade compiling Liddypool: Birthplace of the Beatles (Dalton Watson Fine Books, Ltd). “Most authors who have written about the Beatles write about Liverpool from their computers in another country. All of my research was done the old-fashioned way – by visiting sites, talking to eyewitnesses, collecting stories from friends and acquaintances, and viewing hundreds of documents and previously unseen photographs.”

Former Beatles drummer Pete Best, who wrote the foreword to Liddypool, certainly believes Liddypool is the definitive book on his hometown.

“Without going into too much detail because that would spoil it for when you read the book, I found it to be different in layout, ideas and topics, and, before I forget, here is an author that isn’t afraid to express his own views and theories and blow some fresh air into early Beatles history. Having been a Beatle for two years and not professing to be a Beatle historian, to me this book is totally enlightening.”

Liddypool is the first major book to concentrate solely on The Beatles and Liverpool, covering their rise from childhood in the 1940s and obscurity to their triumphant civic reception at Liverpool Town Hall on 10th July 1964, when the city said goodbye to the Fab Four, their favorite sons, and shared with the world the most famous quartet in the universe.

Bedford uses local knowledge and eyewitness testimony to chart every band member and name-change and lineup, from The Black Jacks to The Beatles: the story of the “Fab 27”.

• Were they really John, Paul, George, Stuart and Norman? • Who was Ken Brown, and why was he such an integral part of this story?
• Who changed the course of Beatles folklore because she won on the horses? Over the course of a decade, Bedford has tracked down every birthplace, home, school and music venue across Liverpool and Merseyside relating to every musician from The Quarrymen to The Beatles. If you want to know which schools John Lennon attended, find all seven of Paul McCartney’s childhood homes, where George Harrison made his musical debut, why Ringo missed out on so much schooling, where Stuart Sutcliffe lived and why Pete Best’s cellar became the focal point for Merseybeat music, then this comprehensive book answers all these questions and more. It is Liverpool in a book.

Whether you are a fan, a fanatic or a “fanorak”, this book is:
• A history book – the history of Liverpool, plus a chronological long and winding road through the life of John, Paul, George, Stuart, Pete, Ringo, Brian Epstein, The Quarrymen and many more. Bedford has interviewed; Pete Best, Allan Williams, The Quarrymen, Bill Harry, Alistair Taylor, Ken Brown, Julia Baird and many more, to get first-hand, eyewitness accounts. Their stories are told here, as well as those of friends and family, together with 800 historical and rare images, some never published before, including up-to-date colour photographs and descriptions for the reader to discover.
• A reference book – search by date, song, venue, geography or favourite Beatle to find out facts, such as; what happened when John met Paul; what the song “Penny Lane” is really about; where The Quarrymen cut their first record.
• A guide book – Bedford provides maps and directions for every suburb within Merseyside connected with The Beatles. You can follow walking tours around Liverpool City Centre, the Dingle, the Penny Lane area, Wavertree, Childwall and Woolton with information and photographs about The Beatles. Discover and explore 59 homes, 24 schools and 103 venues. Locate Strawberry Fields, Mendips, Forthlin Road, The Cavern, The Casbah and Penny Lane, and some of the more obscure venues like the Barnston Women’s Institute and the Liverpool Corporation Passenger Transport Employees Social & Athletic Club, with ease.

DAVID BEDFORD is a life-long Beatles fan who grew up in the Dingle, Liverpool, at the bottom of the street where Ringo Starr was born; attended the same school as the famous drummer – though many years later – and has been involved as a parent and governor at Dovedale School, where John Lennon and George Harrison attended; he has lived by Penny Lane for 20 years. Bedford is also a feature writer for The British Beatles Fan Club since 2000. He has been interviewed on BBC Radio and several national British newspapers about his knowledge of the Beatles. He was most recently chosen by Paul McCartney’s production team to lead and direct the film crew around McCartney’s childhood haunts for the pre-show film on his Back in the World tour.

What others are saying about Liddypool: Birthplace of The Beatles:

“The depth of David Bedford's research is unprecedented. This is a fascinating, valuable and devoted piece of detective work which will appeal to any fan of the Beatles.” Janine Ross, Marketing Manager, The Beatles Story Ltd.

“It's great to see a book from an author who is trying to sieve his way through all the various myths, legends and half-truths and paint a realistic picture of what really happened.
Rod Davis, The Quarrymen

“David has always been a stickler for detail and passionate for facts. If I needed to know some obscure piece of information relating to The Beatles or Liverpool I knew I could rely on him to provide the answer. With the publication of this book, all the information I could require is now handily available within these pages!"
Pete Nash, Editor: British Beatles Fan Club

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Paul McCartney on "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band"

"I was just thinking of nice words, like Sergeant Pepper and Lonely Hearts Club, and they came together for no reason. But after you have written that down you start to think, 'There's this Sergeant Pepper who has taught the band to play and got them going so that at least they found one number. They're a bit of a brass band in a way, but also a rock band in a way, but also a rock band because they've got the San Francisco thing.' And I had the idea that instead of Hells Angels, they put up pictures of Hitler and the latest Nazi signs and leather and that. We went into it just like that: just us doing a good show.

"There's no need to make things up. We started on interviewers who would say, 'What do you believe?' And we'd say, 'We do not believe in gold lamé suits: that's trying to glory it up and doesn't even do it well.' That detaches you from the real thing. That's why Daisy Hawkins wasn't any good -- it sounds like Daisy made-up. Billy Shears is another that sounds like a schoolmate but isn't. Possibly one day we'll meet all these people.

"Ringo's Billy Shears. Definitely. That was just in the production of 'Sgt. Pepper.' It just happened to turn out that we dreamed up Billy Shears. It was a rhyme for 'years' . . . 'band you've known for all these years . . . and here he is, the one and only Billy Shears.' We thought, that's a great little name, it's an Eleanor Rigby type name, a nice atmospheric name, and it was leading into Ringo's track. So as far as we were concerned, it was purely and simply a device to get the next song in."

Beatles News

January 14 & 21, 1969 - Grass in Piccadilly

The Beatles meet Peter Sellers and transition to Apple Studios. On the 21st, John tapes an introduction for the Rolling Stones' set in the film Rock and Roll Circus.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Ringo Starr on Jimmy Fallon

Ringo Starr Interview
Jimmy talks to legendary Beatles drummer Ringo Starr. Part 1 of 2.

Ringo Starr Interview, Part 2
Jimmy talks to legendary Beatles drummer Ringo Starr. Part 2 of 2.

Ringo Starr: "With A Little Help From My Friends" (1/12/10) [3:55]
Ringo Starr performs "With A Little Help From My Friends" with the help of his friends Ben Harper and Relentless7 and Jimmy Fallon.

Ringo Starr and Questlove Drum Off (1/12/10) [0:56]
WEB EXCLUSIVE! Ringo Starr and Questlove drum together as The Roots play after the closing credits.

Ringo Starr Answers Fan Questions (1/12/10) [4:45]
Ringo Starr answers video questions submitted by fans on

Beatles News

Beatles Covers: Richie Havens - Here Comes the Sun

John Lennon's Record Collection: Derek Martin - Daddy Rollin' Stone

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Beatles News

John Lennon on the Album Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band and "A Day in the Life"

"Sgt. Pepper is the one. It was a peak. Paul and I were definitely working together, especially on 'A Day in the Life,' that was real . . . The way we wrote a lot of the time: you'd write the good bit, the part that was easy, like 'I read the news today' or whatever it was, then when you got stuck or whenever it got hard, instead of carrying on, you just drop it. Then we would meet each other, and I would sing half, and he would be inspired to write the next bit and vice versa. He was a bit shy about it because I think he thought it's already a good song. Sometimes we wouldn't let each other interfere with a song either, because you tend to be a bit lax with someone else's stuff, you experiment a bit. So we were doing it in his room with the piano. He said, 'Should we do this?' 'Yeah, let's do that.'

"I keep saying that I always preferred the double album, because my music is better on the double album. I don't care about the whole concept of Pepper, it might be better, but the music was better for me on the double album, because I'm being myself on it. I think it's as simple as the new album, like 'I'm So Tired' is just the guitar. I felt more at ease with that than the production. I don't like production so much. But Pepper was a peak all right."

Monday, January 11, 2010

Pictures of Pattie Boyd + George Harrison

Beatles News

George Harrison on Being a Musician

"I'm a musician. I don't know why. This is a thing that I've looked back on since my birth. Many people feel that life is pre-destined. I think it is vaguely, but it's still up to you which way your life's going to go. All I've ever done is to keep being me and it's just all worked out. It just did it all . . . magic . . . it just did it. We never planned anything. So it's obvious--because I'm a musician now, that's what I was destined to be. It's my gig."

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Paul McCartney on "Strawberry Fields Forever"

"There's a lot of random in our songs -- 'Strawberry Fields' is the name of a Salvation Army School -- by the time we've taken it through the writing stage, thinking of it, playing it to the others, writing it, and letting them think of bits, recording it once and deciding it's not quite right and do it again and then find, 'Oh, that's it, the solo comes here and that goes there,' then bang, you have the jigsaw puzzle.

"That happens with all our songs, except the ones we want to keep really simple, like 'When I'm Sixty-Four' and 'Fixing a Hole.'

"That wasn't 'I buried Paul' at all, that was John saying 'cranberry sauce.' It was the end of 'Strawberry Fields.' That's John humour. John would say something totally out of sync, like 'cranberry sauce.' If you don't realise that John's apt to say 'cranberry sauce' when he feels like it, then you start to hear a funny little word there, and you think, 'Aha!'"