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Old 10-23-2007, 03:46 PM   #31
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Magical Mystery Tour is an EP, not an album. Yes, I know it was his idea.

But do you see what I mean ? You can't blame him exclusively if some of those ideas worked better than others, or rather, if others *mostly John* weren't as keen on going on with the band. Is it a surprise John contributes little to Sgt Pepper or Let it be, compared to Abbey Road or White Album ? You can't keep up a band if at least one party, especially one of the two leading songwriters, isn't interested. Same goes for touring.

My impression is they offered the album, with which none of them were obviously entirely happy, to be produced to different people (wikipedia mentions 3 "Let it be" albums in the process) and that finally John and Paul basically handed over the tapes to Spector, it's just that Paul didn't agree on the production choices he made, because they wanted a more stripped down sound. My understanding was the other three all contributed drums for Back in the USSR.

Maybe it sped up things (even with them recording separately for White Album and George Martin qutting the production on that album in frustration?), but I'm not sure not doing it would somehow magically saved the band, considering how much was going on.
First, I didn't say MMT was an album; I don't get what you're trying to say there. As for John contributing relatively little to Sgt. Pepper's, I don't know if that's really the case; Paul wrote 2 more songs than John, but of the four songs John wrote, you couldn't call Lucy, Mr. Kite, or Day in the Life unambitious. He wasn't spinning his wheels. John's contribution was considerably less for Abbey Road, with only two real songs and some acapella singing over a backwards Moonlight Sonata. Also, if you include Don't Let Me Down and Ballad of John & Yoko, two strong tracks which I included on my version of Let it Be, John's efforts during that period are comparable in quantity to Paul's.

Again, I don't think Paul's conceptual ideas were what "kept the band going", whatever that actually means. You see him as driving the band forward, but what the other band members saw was an overly-controlling presence. Was Sgt. Pepper's a great concept? Obviously. But my main points with all this are that (A) Lennon was writing regardless, and would have contributed to the making of any album, concept or no concept and (B) Paul's idea to film the Let It Be sessions contributed to more tension in the band than ever before (including Lennon's mental disengagement from the proceedings), and are more a factor in the band's breakup than anything else. John, for one, would have been a lot happier had they just recorded an album without the film crew. Would they have broken up eventually? That's very likely, but certainly this hastened it by a year or two. Whether it would have resulted in another Beatles album is impossible to say.
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Old 10-23-2007, 04:15 PM   #32
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i love 'Honey Pie'. think it's total class. fun and goofy. i'm not sure, but i think it took all those dudes to make the beatles great and to break them up. i'm not sure if i fall into a "paul fan" or "john fan" category. i think they both had some hits and misses. kinda irks me to hear folk so vehemently slag off one or the other, then my instincts kick in and i form a reactionary argument.

at the end of the day i think that the "let it be" album is a bit of a stinker. if i think of it like "coda" by led zeppelin - one last one-off to give the fans something - then i guess i think it's ok. but if i'm supposed to hold this up with "abbey road" or "revovler" or "sgt peppers" or "a hard days night" or (i could go on and on), it's shit.

so i guess i'm gonna consider it as a real nice souvenir.

there, that feels good. i don't like it any more than i did before, but i dislike it less...
and the naked version is better...
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Old 10-23-2007, 04:24 PM   #33
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I'm saying I didn't include the Mystery tour for that reason, it's not an album.

Wait, didn't John write Mr.Kite, Lucy and Good morning good morning on that album ? AFAIK A Day in the life was written by both of them, even if John may have contributed more to the song.

Did you include John's songs in the Abbey Road medley ? There's more than Come together, Because and I want you (she's so heavy), even if it's only shorter-than-proper-songs leftovers Beatles in another time may have worked on.

Well, maybe it was both - he tried to keem them going and they likely felt pressured and thought he was taking control in essence. Did it contribute to the tensions ? Yes, but I think it gets overcredited just as much as the "Yoko did it" story. Would things really be any better if the cameras weren't rolling ?
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Old 10-23-2007, 05:03 PM   #34
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Quote:
Originally posted by U2girl
AFAIK A Day in the life was written by both of them, even if John may have contributed more to the song.
It's very much John's song. He was having trouble with the middle 8 and asked Paul for assistance with that part, but other than that, it's generally classified as a Lennon song.
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Old 10-23-2007, 06:24 PM   #35
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naked is almost always better
the beatles might be the exception to that rule though
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Old 10-23-2007, 06:43 PM   #36
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Quote:
Originally posted by U2girl
I'm saying I didn't include the Mystery tour for that reason, it's not an album.

Wait, didn't John write Mr.Kite, Lucy and Good morning good morning on that album ? AFAIK A Day in the life was written by both of them, even if John may have contributed more to the song.

Did you include John's songs in the Abbey Road medley ? There's more than Come together, Because and I want you (she's so heavy), even if it's only shorter-than-proper-songs leftovers Beatles in another time may have worked on.

Well, maybe it was both - he tried to keem them going and they likely felt pressured and thought he was taking control in essence. Did it contribute to the tensions ? Yes, but I think it gets overcredited just as much as the "Yoko did it" story. Would things really be any better if the cameras weren't rolling ?

Yeah, I didn't include the medley stuff for John, because the medley was Paul's baby, and John just dug up some fragments he had that he couldn't do anything with. My point was that by comparison he seemed a bit more involved with Sgt. Pepper's on a creative basis than on Abbey Road. What he did contribute was great, but it was minimal.

And yes, I do think things would have been better if the cameras weren't there. Lennon was against the documentary idea, and though Paul may have persuaded all of them to do it, I don't know if the other two were crazy about it either. The point is that you already have a band that was pulling in these different directions, and while the idea to record an album more organically without all the studio wizardry may have been a good one, the camera crew only served to magnify the problems that they already had.

Now I think Paul had good intentions with these ideas but I think he may have pushed for things harder than necessary, and this combined with the personalities of the others (Lennon wasn't easy to deal with, and Harrison too sensitive) just wore the relationships out eventually. As much of a problem as I have with some of Paul's material, I'm not trying to demonize him like Yoko detractors have with her.
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Old 10-24-2007, 03:42 AM   #37
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Oh ok, for a bit it looked like you were demonizing Paul.

Was it Paul's idea to do the organic Let it be ? I thought everyone was on board with that...would the Beatles have called it quits after the White Album if they didn't agree with Paul on doing Abbey Road and the movie Let it be ?
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Old 10-24-2007, 10:27 AM   #38
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It's difficult to say. I have read any straight up biographies, just a lot of interviews and stuff about the specific albums and songs. I think Paul's idea for Let It Be really revolved around the documentary, I'm not sure how the stripped-down, old school rock and roll aesthetic came about, but it may have been Paul.

I just read the famous 1980 Playboy interviews with John & Yoko, and they're pretty illumnating. John could be schizophrenic at times, seeming to contradict himself from moment to moment. One moment he's arrogant, the next humble. And you definitely see the love/hate thing he had with Paul on display. There's some great stuff in there:

http://www.geocities.com/~beatleboy1...b.beatles.html

It's 3 separate pages. And there's a Playboy interview with Paul & Linda a few years after John's death that's a nice complement to it.

http://www.geocities.com/~beatleboy1...b.beatles.html
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Old 10-24-2007, 02:16 PM   #39
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Utoo, my first reaction upon hearing it was that it wasn't as different from the original as I expected, I found some (not all) of the changes to be quite subtle.

I suppose to me, it was like looking at a piece of art from a different perspective; instead of looking at it from 5 feet away and straight on, I was looking at it from 7 feet, and slightly to the left. Does that even make sense?

I guess what I'm trying to say is, for me, it was not better, worse or meh, it was just different.
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Old 10-24-2007, 02:34 PM   #40
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Quote:
Originally posted by lazarus
It's difficult to say. I have read any straight up biographies, just a lot of interviews and stuff about the specific albums and songs. I think Paul's idea for Let It Be really revolved around the documentary, I'm not sure how the stripped-down, old school rock and roll aesthetic came about, but it may have been Paul.

I just read the famous 1980 Playboy interviews with John & Yoko, and they're pretty illumnating. John could be schizophrenic at times, seeming to contradict himself from moment to moment. One moment he's arrogant, the next humble. And you definitely see the love/hate thing he had with Paul on display. There's some great stuff in there:

http://www.geocities.com/~beatleboy1...b.beatles.html

It's 3 separate pages. And there's a Playboy interview with Paul & Linda a few years after John's death that's a nice complement to it.

http://www.geocities.com/~beatleboy1...b.beatles.html
Thanks for the links. I read one biography (can't remember who wrote it), but I'm not sure it details the "rough years".

Anyway, friendships were repaired. I remember reading somewhere Paul and John even considered re-starting the band in the 70's, and I assume Paul and George patched things up for the Anthology work. Ringo apparently plays on Paul's albums occasionally, so no bad blood between them.
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Old 10-24-2007, 03:17 PM   #41
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somewhere on my hard drive i have a recording of a Harry Nilsson recording session in the USA where paul and john got together with Nilsson and Stevie Wonder and they all jammed together. This was sometime in the '70's, a fair bit after the break up. I know all the Beatles loved Harry immensely, and maybe that's what got them together. it's mostly gobbledeygook, just a bunch of insanely talented dudes goofing around (with john bossing everyone around). but it's cool to hear them having fun. i reckon it's one of the few times John and Paul got together with instruments and tape rolling after the Beatles' split.

regarding the split - my understanding has been that it had a LOT to do with band management-type stuff. i think john and paul were happy to help on each other's compositions as performers (it's just john with paul doing all the rhythm stuff on 'ballad of john and yoko') and to let each other write whatever they wanted. but after the demise of their relationship with Brian Epstein (who managed them ineptly and catastrophically) and the Apple debacle, John wanted Alan Klein to manage the group (he was getting the Rolling Stones exponentially more money for their licensing and publishing and record sales than Epstein had managed for the beatles) while Paul wanted to go with Linda's father (Eastman - i forget his first name). John was right on this one, Paul was being stupid. Yoko had nothing to do with it.

that being said, John made some shit music happen under Yoko's influence. I just saw that Rolling Stones Rock Circus thingamajig for the first time in a long time the other day. Now that performance of "yer Blues" by the Dirty Mac is amazing. but that blues thing with Yoko going 'yayayayayayayayayayah!!!!' is inexcusable. John nodding along like it's some brilliant shit. i kept expecting mitch mitchell to stab him or her with his drum sticks to make it stop, or for Keef to throw down his bass and run off in embarrassment and disgust. Clapton looks over a few times with a classic 'what the fuck' look on his face.
priceless....

so don't try to tell me that john was all solid gold and paul wass all shit popsicles. 'cos we all know that ain't the case.
and i'm not even gonna start on 'Revolution no. 9'...
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Old 10-24-2007, 04:10 PM   #42
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Quote:
Originally posted by dudeman

that being said, John made some shit music happen under Yoko's influence. I just saw that Rolling Stones Rock Circus thingamajig for the first time in a long time the other day. Now that performance of "yer Blues" by the Dirty Mac is amazing. but that blues thing with Yoko going 'yayayayayayayayayayah!!!!' is inexcusable. John nodding along like it's some brilliant shit. i kept expecting mitch mitchell to stab him or her with his drum sticks to make it stop, or for Keef to throw down his bass and run off in embarrassment and disgust. Clapton looks over a few times with a classic 'what the fuck' look on his face.
priceless....

so don't try to tell me that john was all solid gold and paul wass all shit popsicles. 'cos we all know that ain't the case.
and i'm not even gonna start on 'Revolution no. 9'...
That's the most accurate assessment of Lennon I've ever read on this site.
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Old 10-24-2007, 04:35 PM   #43
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The version of 'Let It Be' on naked bothers me for the reason that the guitar solo is replaced by a keyboard(I think it's a keyboard anyway) solo. Bad decision.
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Old 10-24-2007, 04:56 PM   #44
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It's still a guitar solo, just a different one, but you can hear the keyboards in the background, which I'm assuming is due to the remastered sound quality more than anything else, although I could be wrong.

The original is better anyway.
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Old 10-24-2007, 06:53 PM   #45
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Quote:
Originally posted by dudeman
that being said, John made some shit music happen under Yoko's influence. I just saw that Rolling Stones Rock Circus thingamajig for the first time in a long time the other day. Now that performance of "yer Blues" by the Dirty Mac is amazing. but that blues thing with Yoko going 'yayayayayayayayayayah!!!!' is inexcusable. John nodding along like it's some brilliant shit. i kept expecting mitch mitchell to stab him or her with his drum sticks to make it stop, or for Keef to throw down his bass and run off in embarrassment and disgust. Clapton looks over a few times with a classic 'what the fuck' look on his face.
priceless....

so don't try to tell me that john was all solid gold and paul wass all shit popsicles. 'cos we all know that ain't the case.
and i'm not even gonna start on 'Revolution no. 9'...

John wasn't perfect, but I don't understand what's wrong with trying to push the boundaries a little. Keep in mind that there are many pop music fans that think I Am the Walrus or Tomorrow Never Knows are just as out there and abrasive as Revolution #9. Not everything has to fit into a neat little package. Is #9 a great song? No. But it's not a song anyway. It's messing around, playing with sound effects and loops. But I don't think it's a giant jerk off. It's exploring the possibilities of the medium, and is just as political as the song that shares its name, in the way it challenges the norm, or what you think falls under the umbrella of The Beatles, pop music, art, whatever. That track was hugely influential to people who went on to dabble in electronic music, using samples and effects, etc.

You can point fingers at Yoko all you want, but as annoying and full of shit as the avant garde can be, there are a lot of great things that have come out of it. John became exposed to Yoko's art before Sgt. Pepper's was recorded, so you have to include her as a potential influence on everything that came after this point. I find it much of it terrible as well, but that's part of what you get when you take risks and try new things.
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