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Zharth's Music Log

Week 7: The Beatles

Preface: First of all, let me say that I am not a fan of the Beatles. I recognize that they were hugely popular and influential in certain ways, but I also think they are largely overrated and are not the end-all be-all of music. The Beatles did not single-handedly create the musical revolution of the 60's and 70's, and had they never existed in the first place, the revolution still would have happened and it would have been just as good. I'm not saying the Beatles necessarily suck, but the fact of the matter is, their sound just doesn't appeal to me, in general. Too much pop, not enough lead guitar. That having been said, there are a handful (just a handful) of Beatles songs that I do like, or can at least tolerate when I'm in the mood. And since the Beatles were undoubtedly such a large part of the music scene that I am so interested in, I figured the least I could do was dedicate a week to the only Beatles songs I like. That way, noone can complain if I never pull out another Beatles song on my music log again. :D

P.S. Lennon > McCartney

Monday (9/03/07): While My Guitar Gently Weeps [The White Album, 1968]
Comments: This was the first Beatles song that ever caught my attention, unsurprisingly from the soulful lead guitar courtesy of one Eric Clapton. I actually heard a stripped acoustic version of this song once, with no lead guitar. Talk about pointless. Anyhow, I've discovered musicians that can make their guitar weep much more sorrowfully than Clapton can since then, but this one's still a good lead.

Tuesday (9/04/07): Happiness Is A Warm Gun [The White Album, 1968]
Comments: I don't even really like this song all that much, but it's just that the whole "happiness is a warm gun" line kind of tickles my fancy. I guess I just like the idea of accepting happiness in life as an illusion which many people struggle for, and only end up making themselves more miserable when they can't reach it. And so, in the end, the only true happiness is a warm gun, with which you can end your own tortured existence...or let off some steam by murdering a few of the wretches that torment you, I suppose. Either way, it's all good.

Wednesday (9/05/07): Twist And Shout [Please Please Me, 1963]
Comments: The impassioned vocals on this song make it a keeper, not to mention the Little Richard-esque accompaniment. Honestly, it was the movie Ferris Bueller's Day Off that made me like this song. It's just a great fun scene. But ultimately, it's the vocals that carry this song.

Thursday (9/06/07): Helter Skelter [The White Album, 1968]
Comments: Possibly the Beatles' heaviest song? That makes up for a lot. Unlike the group's crooning pop singles, this one's a solid rocker, front to back.

Friday (9/07/07): I Want You (She's So Heavy) [Abbey Road, 1969]
Comments: This song has a tendency to drag on, kind of like the god-forsaken Hey Jude, but in this case, the song is enticing enough that it doesn't feel unwelcome. The strained energy of the song is palpable, and the lyrics, while incredibly simple, just cut right to the point - "I want you so bad it's driving me mad". When I first heard/discovered this song, it was the perfect accompaniment to my own feelings at the time.

Saturday (9/08/07): Yer Blues [The White Album, 1968]
Comments: Actually, I first heard this song c/o The Dirty Mac, from The Rolling Stones' Rock And Roll Circus, but the Beatles version is good too. A great take on a rockin' blues. I read once that this was a tongue-in-cheek jab at either the blues itself or the British imitation of it, and from the lyrics I can believe it, but ironically that doesn't kill my enjoyment of the song, because I can still listen to it and take it at face value.

Sunday (9/09/07): Revolution 9 [The White Album, 1968]
Comments: I have to say this is probably my favorite Beatles song, and that statement isn't entirely independent of the fact that many Beatles fans hate this song and think it's the worst thing the band ever recorded. I do think it's genius, though. Absolutely creepy, very atmospheric. I like scary things like this, and just the idea that a band like the Beatles recorded it makes it even more intriguing. And the alleged connections to Revelation 9 only sweeten the deal.