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What Are You Listening To?


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On 1/14/2021 at 11:21 PM, jamesjazzguitar said:

Here is a singer \ musician that,  as far as I recall,  isn't mentioned much today:  the lovely and talented Nancy Wilson.

"On Green Dolphin Street" is on Disc 2 of the NANCY WILSON collection I'm listening to.  The whole compilation is wonderful!  You made me think of listening to NANCY

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BeatlesVIalbumcover.jpg

Beatles VI-Jun 1965

A very good collection of melodic pop and wild rockers. First track is a cover of Leiber and Stoller's "Kansas City", belted out by Paul who follows the Little Richard version nearly note for note and is the equal to it. "Eight Days A Week" is a #1 single and one of the groups most infectious and joyous songs ever, the handclaps and singing by John, Paul and George give it's greatness. George has one of his own compositions, an OK song "You Like Me Too Much", it's unusual for it's piano opening. In George's autobiography I Me Mine, he never mentions this one, not sure if he forgot about it or didn't think much of it. John has one of his most raucous covers with "Bad Boy" by Larry Williams, a very 1950s songs about a juvenile delinquent. "I Don't Want To Spoil The Party" is an interesting self pitying song sung mostly by John, helped by Paul on the chorus. John and Paul sing a warm duet of Buddy Holly's "Words Of Love", George's twelve string electric (at least I think it's a 12 string electric) gives it a nice sound. Side 2 begins with another Paul solo "What You're Doing" a catchy pop tune with an opening drum beat and more great guitar. "Yes It Is" has some great 3 part harmony singing and emotional John solo in the middle, similar to "This Boy". John has some wild singing on another Larry Williams rocker "Dizzy Miss Lizzie". The last two songs are good pop tunes with some interesting instruments. Paul mostly handles "Tell Me What You See" with some electric piano. "Every Little Thing" is John singing helped by Paul and a "ba-boom" on a timpani drum in the chorus.

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Help! - Wikipedia

Help! by The Beatles-Aug 1965

Songs from their second movie and not one of their best albums. It's not their fault, the seven songs they contribute are all great, but we in the USA got shortchanged since the other five tracks are some instrumental music from the movie, some are versions of other Beatles songs like "A Hard Day's Night" and "From Me To You" with some Indian instruments. Otherwise they are not worth talking about. Now to the good stuff-the title song is some of John's best lyrics and singing yet, he is literally crying out for help from his insecurity and loneliness. Paul has the lead on "The Night Before" a catchy song with electric piano and Paul doing a bit of his R&B voice. John is next with "You've Got To Hide Your Love Away" a Bob Dylan influenced song, more great singing as John sings the verses in a weary voice before shouting "Hey!" on the chorus. George contributes another of his own compositions with "i Need You", his songwriting is getting better and the melody is haunting in parts. The guitar volume pedal is a nice touch also. As with his last song "You Like Me Too Much", George doesn't mention this one in his autobiograpy either. Not sure why, he must have recalled it since he performed the song in the movie as well. Side 2 opens with a jaunty Paul song "Another GIrl" in which he also plays lead guitar. A ringing guitar riff, Ringo's fine drumming and great John/Paul duet on next with their #1 single "Ticket To Ride". The last song is one of the best with "You're Gonna Lose That Girl" a great nasally vocal by John as he sneeringly tells a friend not only will he lose his girl but he will steal her from him. Paul and George have some of their best backup singing ever.

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3 hours ago, Det Jim McLeod said:

Songs from their second movie and not one of their best albums.

Absolutely right.  The British release of HELP! is far superior.  I do like the James Bond style guitar riff, supposedly written by LENNON, on the USA opening track. 

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US album release: Rubber Soul – The Beatles Bible

Rubber Soul by The Beatles-Dec 1965

I just wanted to remind everyone that I am reviewing all the US versions of the Beatle albums. So this is the US one and not only my favorite by the Fab Four but my favorite album of all time. I love every song and everytime I hear it I wish it would never end. The first track is "I've Just Seen A Face" with driving acoustic guitars and Paul's great singing rushing through the lyrics. Next is John giving us  "Norwegian Wood" an exquisite melody and cryptic lyrics and George's first playing on the sitar. "You Won't See Me" is a great pop song sung by Paul with some falsetto "ooh la la la" backing from John and George. George sings his best composition so far -"Think For Yourself" has a great melody and cynical lyrics. Paul plays a fuzz bass on this which also gives a unique sound to it. "The Word" is an unusual song for the group as it is about love but not about romantic love, it's about spreading love all around to everyone. John, Paul and George harmonize on it and John takes a powerful solo where he says "I'm here to show everybody the light!" Paul sings a tender love song "Michelle" another beautiful melody and part of it is in French. Side 2 opens with "It's Only Love" sung by John, this coming after the sweetness of "Michelle" , here we have a couple in trouble with lyrics like "Is it right that you and I should fight, every night?" and "It's so hard loving you" perfectly contrasting the light, romantic Paul and the darker, cynical John.  John is back again with "Girl" another great song about troubled love. Muscially it's a real treat with John taking a big intake of breath and exhaling it on the chorus of "Girrrlllllll, girl, girl", the guitar playing at the end has the feeling of Greek music. "I'm Looking Through You" has Paul singing another great pop song about someone who has changed and he uses a gruffer voice on the line "You're not the same!".  "In My Life" is probably my favorite song of all time, about nostalgia and affection, sung by John in his warmest voice and a beautiful piano solo by George Martin. "Wait" is a great duet by John and Paul with Paul taking over on the bridge. It has some great tambourine shaking. The final track "Run For Your Life" has John showing his darkest side yet, and we had just heard his sweetest side on "In My Life". Changing from the wistful guy on that one and now a jealous stalker on this one. He sings it in his most menacing tone ever. So there you have it, the most brilliant, beautiful album of all time.

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4 hours ago, Det Jim McLeod said:

I just wanted to remind everyone that I am reviewing all the US versions of the Beatle albums. So this is the US one and not only my favorite by the Fab Four but my favorite album of all time.

My favorite BEATLES album is Rubber Soul

I read at wikipedia that these 4 tracks were removed for the USA release: "Drive My Car", "Nowhere Man", "What Goes On" and "If I Needed Someone" ... even missing, a great album with a couple of HELP! tracks that had been removed were USA issued on Rubber Soul

Wow.  "In My Life" is probably my favorite song also...certainly my favorite LENNON.  I love BETTE MIDLER's version. 

 

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13 hours ago, Allhallowsday said:

Wow.  "In My Life" is probably my favorite song also...certainly my favorite LENNON.  I love BETTE MIDLER's version. 

Judy Collins did a nice version too, but no one has topped the original.

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The Beatles pose around a steamer trunk

Yesterday And Today by The Beatles-Jul 1966

This may be just a cut and paste collection for the US, taking songs off the UK versions of Help!, Rubber Soul and the yet to be released Revolver along with a double sided hit single, but it is still a great album. It starts with "Drive My Car" a great rocker sung by Paul and showing his knack for ironic wit. "I'm Only Sleeping" is an eerie sounding song by John about staying in bed all day. "Nowhere Man" is  great social comment on someone not having a point of view and missing out on many things, great 3 part harmony and a beautiful bridge of "Nowhere Man, please listen..." with John in fine voice. "Dr Robert" is another good John song about a doctor who gives you anything you ask for. Paul then has his classic "Yesterday", there has been countless versions but no one topped the simple sound of the guitar, strings and plaintive, beautiful singing of Paul yet. Ringo has one of his best vocals with "Act Naturally" a funny C&W Buck Owens song about a fool making the big time. Side 2 is "And Your Bird Can Sing" a rousing pop song with great energetic playing and singing, almost sounding like something off of Meet The Beatles. The lyrics are cryptic and John called it a "horror" that he tossed off to have a song on the album, still it's a delight to listen to it. George has another strong song he wrote "If I Needed Someone" with 12 string guitar and harmonies that he was inspired by the folk rock group The Byrds. The smash single "We Can Work It Out" is another great pop song, Paul starting out with his hopeful sounding on the title and John countering with the more cautious "Life is very short" line on the bridge. Ringo gets another song "What Goes On?", even gets a writing credit along with Lennon & McCartney, but this is the weakest on the album but still OK. It sounds almost like a copy of the style of "Act Naturally". The last song is the catchy rocker "Day Tripper" with one of their best guitar riffs. 

 

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51 minutes ago, Det Jim McLeod said:

The Beatles pose around a steamer trunk

Yesterday And Today by The Beatles-Jul 1966

This may be just a cut and paste collection for the US, taking songs off the UK versions of Help!, Rubber Soul and the yet to be released Revolver along with a double sided hit single, but it is still a great album. It starts with "Drive My Car" a great rocker sung by Paul and showing his knack for ironic wit. "I'm Only Sleeping" is an eerie sounding song by John about staying in bed all day. "Nowhere Man" is  great social comment on someone not having a point of view and missing out on many things, great 3 part harmony and a beautiful bridge of "Nowhere Man, please listen..." with John in fine voice. "Dr Robert" is another good John song about a doctor who gives you anything you ask for. Paul then has his classic "Yesterday", there has been countless versions but no one topped the simple sound of the guitar, strings and plaintive, beautiful singing of Paul yet. Ringo has one of his best vocals with "Act Naturally" a funny C&W Buck Owens song about a fool making the big time. Side 2 is an rousing pop song with great energetic playing and singing, almost sounding like something off of Meet The Beatles. The lyrics are cryptic and John called it a "horror" that he tossed off to have a song on the album, still it's a delight to listen to it. George has another strong song he wrote "If I Needed Someone" with 12 string guitar and harmonies that he was inspired by the folk rock group The Byrds. The smash single "We Can Work It Out" is another great pop song, Paul starting out with his hopeful sounding on the title and John countering with the more cautious "Life is very short" line on the bridge. Ringo gets another song, even gets a writing credit along with Lennon & McCartney, but this is the weakest on the album but still OK. It soundsalmost like a copy of the style of "Act Naturally". The last song is the catchy rocker "Day Tripper" with one of their best guitar riffs. 

 

What Goes One,  the song Ringo wrote the lyrics too,  is my favorite track on this album.    For me it has some of the best guitar playing by John and George.    In addition while the form is a standard blues progression ( I\IV\V),   the verse starts with an A-minor chord instead of the standard "I" of E major.   That is hip!    Sorry if I'm getting too technical,  but my wife has told me she is surprised I like this country-western sounding Beatles tune.    Playing this song is a blast.   

 

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43 minutes ago, Det Jim McLeod said:

I bought my copy in the late 1970s, so there were no more of these butcher covers around then.

The "butcher block" cover didn't last a full day for sale at USA retailers.  It was so rare people were peeling off the trunk cover to see if the butcher block was underneath (almost never was).  That cover is legendary for that album.  I never had one.  You're listening to vinyl?

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