Seven Summer Songs

I found this via Iylka:

List seven songs you are into right now. No matter what the genre, whether they have words, or even if they’re not any good, but they must be songs you’re really enjoying now, shaping your spring summer. Post these instructions in your blog along with your seven songs. Then tag seven other people to see what they’re listening to.

Now, she didn’t tag me, but it looked like a lot of fun, so I decided to do it anyway. After all, I did just go ahead and bite the bullet and make a Gratuitous Beatles Blogging category. Might as well use it, don’t you think? Some people have their cat, or dog, or otter blogging. I can have my occasional Saturday Beatles blogging, right? (No, seriously, I’m not pissing anyone off, am I?)

And yes, they are all Beatles songs. I go through obsessive periods, and my obsessive Beatles periods tend to last longest. I haven’t listened to anything but the Beatles for months now. No, that’s not an exaggeration. But I’m having a great time with it, and showing no signs of slowing down! As you can see, I’m in an early Beatles mood lately, which is really unlike me. But, finally watching the Beatles Anthology for the first time this Christmas, particularly the live performances, gave me a new appreciation for their early work. Also, if these aren’t “summer” songs, I don’t know what are.

I Should Have Known Better. One of John’s best early songs, IMHO. Video from A Hard Day’s Night, one of my favorite movies. Watch John rock out the harmonica and Paul make some flirty eyes with George’s future wife Pattie Boyd.

We Can Work it Out.
I LOVE this song. It’s one of my favorite of McCartney’s — though of course, it wouldn’t be the same without Lennon’s great chorus, complete with the time change. I also really love this video for how John keeps hamming it up, as he usually did for these things, making funny faces at the camera and trying to ruin Paul’s concentration. Especially at the beginning when he shakes his head and goes “ooooh!” Oh, and the randomly switching outfits. And Paul’s ridiculously and spontaneously changing facial expressions, which say that he can’t decide whether he’s being a Very Serious Musician or having the time of his life.

Day Tripper
! How fucking awesome is this song? I always feel like Day Tripper was a great Beatles milestone. Paul gets the lead vocal, which he rocks, but it was primarily a John-written song. What an amazing fucking guitar hook.

Intro by Paul is from the Anthology. As you can probably tell, the video was filmed at the same time as the one for We Can Work it Out — they were released as a double A-side. (What a great single!) And this video cracks me up even more than the one before it, particularly Ringo. Two other things that need mentioning: I love John’s hair in this period. He didn’t have it for very long at all, but it totally worked. And I really like seeing John and Paul when they were still best friends and seem to be really enjoying each others’ company. You know, before John became a self-important crotchety drug addict and Paul became a self-important pompous jackass. (And George, would it really pain you so much to smile once in a while? I know you’ve got teeth in there somewhere.)

I’m Only Sleeping.
Sadly, we’re out of real Beatles videos by this point, so we’ll have to deal with the fan-created versions. But anyone who says they don’t love the backwards guitar solo is LYING.

I Want to Tell You.
Now, While My Guitar Gently Weeps is my all-time favorite George song. It’s brilliance. But I fucking love I Want to Tell You, it’s just utterly filled with hooks and a great guitar part. It gives “Gently Weeps” a run for it’s money. As does the next song . . .

Taxman. If you don’t love this song, there’s something wrong with you. Revolver was such a great time for the band, but was really just a moment of leaps and bounds for George. You can just hear him staking his flag in the ground and saying “oh yeah, Lennon/McCartney?  Think you’re the one ones who can write some songs?”  Think again! In my opinion, with Taxman he’s hot on the heels of Eleanor Rigby and Tomorrow Never Knows for best song on the album.  Interesting trivia: I always thought that George was using hyperbole, but it turns out that the Beatles actually were being taxed 95% of their income.  Damn.

And Your Bird Can Sing. This song is ridiculous — John pretty accurately called it a throwaway — but it’s catchy as fuck and will stay in your head for days. I saved this one for last because the video, though not an official Beatles promo video, is AWESOME. It’s from the Beatles Cartoon! Now, here’s the thing about the Beatles Cartoons: they’re bad. The “plots” are terrible and annoying, the voice work during the talking scenes just about breaks my brain, and the animation during the “plot” sequences is just plain poor. BUT. During the scenes where the band is performing, they put in a lot of work and it pays off. Those crappy little cartoons turn into hilarious and impressively spot on caricatures of the band, and they managed to capture each of their stage demeanors and quirks with endlessly amusing accuracy. It almost makes those obnoxious “plot lines” worth it . . . but with the magic of YouTube, you have the benefit of not having to watch three minutes of some folks hunting a bird in a jungle that the Beatles just so happen to be in.  Check it out!

That was fun! I’m not tagging anyone (since, you know, I wasn’t even tagged), but feel free to go ahead and do it. A splendid time is guaranteed for all!

0 thoughts on “Seven Summer Songs

  1. Cara Post author

    Really? Was it a catch-phrase after George used it, or did he use it because it was a catch-phrase? I’m trying to figure out an instance in which I could actually use that catch-phrase . . . though it probably is my favorite line of the song.

  2. Pingback: Smite Me! [.net] » Blog Archive » Summer Meme-ing

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