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What Are You Listening To?


movieman1957
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14 minutes ago, Det Jim McLeod said:

TheBeatlesSecondAlbumreissuecover.jpg

The Beatles Second Album-Apr 1964

This one has 11 songs and 6 of them are covers, it's not as good as Meet The Beatles but has many enjoyable moments. The opener is "Roll Over Beethoven" a version of the Chuck Berry classic with George singing lead. It's fairly well done but not as good as the Berry original. "Thank You Girl" is a catchy song with John playing harmonica. John also sings a respectable version of Smokey Robinson's "You Really Got A Hold On Me". George sings lead again on an obscure cover "Devil In Her Heart" which is OK. John then does a blistering version of "Money" which blows Barrett Strong's original out of the water. A great original "You Can't Do That" is next with great slightly threatening vocals from John and he also takes over the  lead guitar part. Side 2 starts with the only song Paul sing lead, a wild cover of Little Richard's "Long Tall Sally", it is one of his strongest vocals and he even surpasses the classic original. "I Call Your Name" is one of the weaker tracks, good guitar work but not as catchy or energetic as some of the other early songs. John comes up with another great vocal on "Please Mr Postman" which is the equal to the Marvellette's original. John again takes lead on the pretty good original "I'll Get You". The album closes with their smash single "She Loves You" with the exuberant  Yeah! Yeah! Yeah! chorus.

I'm a real rock and roll fan from way back. In some ways this has always been my favorite Beatle album.

"I Call Your Name " is my favorite on the album. Billy J Kramer and The Dakotas actually had a 45 hit with it.

By the way, I thought George's "Roll Over Beethoven" was quite good--But nobody would expect him to be as good as Chuck Berry. LOL

You're doing a great job--

I wish I could throw some jelly babies at you.😎

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2 hours ago, Princess of Tap said:

I'm a real rock and roll fan from way back. In some ways this has always been my favorite Beatle album.

"I Call Your Name " is my favorite on the album. Billy J Kramer and The Dakotas actually had a 45 hit with it.

By the way, I thought George's "Roll Over Beethoven" was quite good--But nobody would expect him to be as good as Chuck Berry. LOL

You're doing a great job--

I wish I could throw some jelly babies at you.😎

You have a good ear.    I Call Your Name is the best written song from a musical POV.    Use of many flat chords (E.g. Db7) and a chord progression that was innovative for its time.

Clearly my favorite on the album and a song I play often to show that John and Paul were ahead of all the others in the rock and roll genre.  

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Something New by The Beatles-Jul 1964

Another great Fab Four record, mostly complied from the British version of A Hard Day's Night. "i'll Cry Instead" kicks off the album, John in the lead, a quick little number with some more intriguing lyrics, here John says "I've got a chip on my shoulder that's bigger than my feet". Paul is lead on "Things We Said Today" a great melody on this and he sings it very well, love the guitar strumming bits too. John takes the lead again on the next 3 tracks. I love "Any Time At All" with a great thud on the drums every time he shouts out the title. "When I Get Home" is another pretty good one, I liked the "Wo-oh-I" vocals on the chorus. "Slow Down" is a cover of a Larry Williams song, this is one of the most entertaining songs on here as John is having a blast punctuating the lyrics with some of his best screams. Ringo has own vocal on Carl Perkins' "Matchbox" he is really getting comfortable with rockablly music here. Side 2 opens with "Tell Me Why" one of their many catchy and energetic songs of this era. Next is "And I Love Her" one of Paul's most haunting melodies and tender singing, he has said that George came up with the acoustic guitar intro and outro which is another great part of the song. George sings lead very well on the next "I'm Happy Just To Dance With You" a great feel good song about falling in love on the dance floor. Another beautiful ballad is "If I Fell" with John singing the first part in his warmest voice and then settling into magical harmony with Paul on the rest of it. The final track is "Komm, Gib Mir Deine Hand" which "I Want To Hold Your Hand" sung in German. The Germans may be the only ones interested in hearing this one but they do perform with the same gusto they did on the original. 
 

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1 hour ago, Det Jim McLeod said:

George sings lead very well on the next "I'm Happy Just To Dance With You" a great feel good song about falling in love on the dance floor.

I'm Happy Just To Dance With You is one of my top 5 early Beatles songs.     Just solid all around.    Written by Paul, with an interesting chord progression,  and,  as noted, with George singing the lead.   This allows for John and Paul to sing harmony,  and both are in fine form.     I mean really,,,,,  having those two as the back-up singers!       The ending lyric change of  "I discovered I'm in love with you,   'Cause I'm happy just to dance with you",,,,  still melts my heart after over 40 years of hearing this classic.

 

 

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18 minutes ago, jamesjazzguitar said:

I'm Happy Just To Dance With You is one of my top 5 early Beatles songs.     Just solid all around.    Written by Paul, with an interesting chord progression,  and,  as noted, with George singing the lead.   This allows for John and Paul to sing harmony,  and both are in fine form.     I mean really,,,,,  having those two as the back-up singers!       The ending lyric change of  "I discovered I'm in love with you,   'Cause I'm happy just to dance with you",,,,  still melts my heart after over 40 years of hearing this classic.

 

 

Thanks, I know you are a musician so I am curious to know what you think of the guitar playing on "And I Love Her". I am not sure if that's a Spanish guitar George is playing, it kind of gives me a "flamenco" feel but I am not too musiclally knowledgeable

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21 minutes ago, Det Jim McLeod said:

Thanks, I know you are a musician so I am curious to know what you think of guitar playing on "And I Love Her". I am not sure if that's a Spanish guitar George is playing, it kind of gives me a "flamenco" feel but I am not too musiclally knowledgeable

You're correct.   The guitar George plays is a 1964 José Ramírez Guitarra de Estudio classical guitar.

I play an instrumental version of the song,  slightly faster,  with a Bossa Nova beat.      (hey,  if I could sing even half as good as Paul,  I would attempt to sing it,, but a man must know his limitations).       George sounds nice but his very short solo just follows the melody line.     I always wished The Beatles had re-recorded some of their best written songs as 4 - 6 minutes versions allowing all of these fine musicians to stretch out.       (but trust me,  I'm not complaining,,, the lads left a legacy that will never be topped (IMO).

 

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Beatles '65-Dec 1964

The great albums continue with this excellent collection. The first track "No Reply" wastes no time and John gets into the lyrics right away, in this tale of seeing a cheating lover. John's singing is very passionate on this one, several other songs on this album have some dark or sad connotations. "I'm A Loser" is John again, blaming himself for a breakup, the lyrics indicate John has another side to him then the grinning moptop-"Although I laugh and I act like a clown, beneath this mask I am wearing a frown". The next "Baby's In Black" is a waltz and John and Paul duet, it's a bizarre story of a girl who will not stop mourning her dead lover. John then does terrific version of Chuck Berry's "Rock And Roll Music" , some of his best singing, this is the equal and in many ways  superior to the original. Paul gets his first solo "I'll Follow The Sun" is a nice sad love song about leaving his love, only complaint is that it's too short (1:46), I could listen to this for several more minutes. A obscure cover song "Mr Moonlight" is next, a strange choice for the Beatles, its sounds like it has a bit of Carribean beat to it (not really sure what it is) but John does some more good singing on it. Ringo opens Side 2 with a cover of Carl Perkins' "Honey Don't", One of Ringo's best vocals, he is clearly having a great time on this as he says "Rock on George for Ringo one time" before the guitar solo."I'll Be Back" is a  nice haunting melody with John again in the lead. Paul's second solo (he really got shortchanged on this record) with "She's A Woman" a great rocker where he adopts a R&B growl. "I Feel Fine" is a #1 single, great guitar riff and catchy chorus, though the feedback and hazy sound give it a early psychedelic feel. George closes the album with another Carl Perkins song "Everybody's Trying To Be My Baby" with great guitar work and some of his more lighthearted vocals.

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5 hours ago, Det Jim McLeod said:

TheBeatlesBeatles65reissuecover.jpg

Beatles '65-Dec 1964

A obscure cover song "Mr Moonlight" is next, a strange choice for the Beatles, its sounds like it has a bit of Carribean beat to it (not really sure what it is) but John does some more good singing on it. 

The problem with Mr. Moonlight (one of The Beatles least popular songs) is the organ. It is too much in the foreground and has such a lame solo that it makes the tune, for me, more annoying than bad. John does a good vocal on a not very good song.

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The Early Beatles -Mar 1965

The liner notes on this album says that these were among the songs that launched The Beatles. And Capitol admits they were on another record label (Vee Jay). It's a very entertaining collection, with 6 cover songs and 5 originals. The first is "Love Me Do" their very first recording, it's a good singalong type song with John and Paul dueting and Paul singing the title, it reached #1 here in the US. The next is John's explosive version of "Twist And Shout", the best of the cover songs. John screams out the lyrics with Paul and George backing him, their voices build to a frenzy after the guitar break, this rips the Isley Brothers' original to shreds. John slows thing down with a ballad "Anna" written by Arthur Alexander. George has his first lead vocal with a sprightly "Chains" a girl group hit by The Cookies. Ringo sing lead on "Boys" a Shirelles song that he makes totally his own, backed by great "bop shoo w o ps" by John and Paul. Another original is "Ask Me Why" a singalong tune similar to "Love Me Do". Side 2 has the best of the originals-"Please Please Me" a very catchy uptempo number with some energetic call and response with "come on, come on". Paul gets a solo with a sweet love song "P.S. I Love You" about a love letter. John takes over for a great dramatic version of the Shirelles' "Baby It's You", which is just as good as the original. Paul seems to be the romantic balladeer of the group at this time and does a nice version of the pop standard "A Taste Of Honey". George has the lead on the simple but irresistible "Do You Want To Know A Secret" helped by soothing "doo-da-doo" backing from John and Paul.

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56 minutes ago, Det Jim McLeod said:

Another original is "Ask Me Why" a singalong tune similar to "Love Me Do"

Can't see how Ask Me Why is similar to Love Me Do.     For me Ask Me Why is one of the most unique early John songs.   I assume they were influence by  British T.V. shows that featured musical acts;   it has a very pop sound and could have been written even if Rock & Roll never became a thing.   This from Wiki: 

 The song is in the key of E major, with some leaning to its relative minor of C#, and is in 4/4 time. Structurally, the song is complex and, as Alan Pollack states, contains three different variants of the verse.[9] The song also contains "jazzy parallel sevenths" in most of the chords, and has a live ending.

 

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8 minutes ago, jamesjazzguitar said:

Can't see how Ask Me Why is similar to Love Me Do.     For me Ask Me Why is one of the most unique early John songs.   I assume they were influence by  British T.V. shows that featured musical acts;   it has a very pop sound and could have been written even if Rock & Roll never became a thing.   This from Wiki: 

 The song is in the key of E major, with some leaning to its relative minor of C#, and is in 4/4 time. Structurally, the song is complex and, as Alan Pollack states, contains three different variants of the verse.[9] The song also contains "jazzy parallel sevenths" in most of the chords, and has a live ending.

 

It's a good song, I am not a musician so I don't understand much about what key or chords are in it. It just seemed like a slower tempo song like "Love Me Do". 

What do you think of the "Please Please Me" song?

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19 minutes ago, Det Jim McLeod said:

It's a good song, I am not a musician so I don't understand much about what key or chords are in it. It just seemed like a slower tempo song like "Love Me Do". 

What do you think of the "Please Please Me" song?

I agree,,, Ask Me Why is a good song.     One main reason I mention it is that, while I have played Beatles songs for over 35 years,  I only really "heard" this one about 8 or so years ago.    I.e. I got a CD mix of early Beatles songs (1962 - 63) from a friend,  and this one was on that (along with There's A Place):    These songs were "new" to me (yea,  I'm sure I had heard them but they dropped off the radar over the decades).        At first I assumed Ask Me Why was a cover since it just didn't "feel" like a John\Paul song.    So I looked it up in my book:  The Complete Beatles,  which has the sheet music for almost every Beatles song ever released (not just written but released),   and yea,  there was Ask Me Why;   So I learned it and discovered its unique traits.

As for Please Please Me;   Another song where John's singing is the star,  being pushed by the quick tempo by his mates.    What can I say,,,  just another fine song by the lads.

 

 

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