Paul McCartney, Coming Up

Posted in Paul McCartney on June 27th, 2012 by Willie

This is my all time favorite solo Paul McCartney music video.  It would have been on the site years ago, but I could never find a version of it on youtube that I was able to embed on my website.  Those days are over, so, at long last, I can proudly paste “Coming Up,” on  The song, which kicked off the otherwise disappointing McCartney II, is one of solo Paul’s best ever.  Its a bubbling psychedelic techno folk anthem of positivity.  The song, and its genius accompanying video which debuted on Saturday Night Live, was so good, that it kicked a then retired John Lennon in the balls to start making pop music again.  John famously claimed that he couldn’t get the song out of his head, and also thought that he could do exactly what Paul was doing, saturating the pop music scene with delicious little throwaway pop numbers.  Personally, I believe it was the first ember that would spark the eventual reunion that never happened in the late 80s/early 90s.  I’ve posted about it before, but what people don’t really understand about the Beatles Anthology, was that it was decades in the making, with John having a firm hand in its creation, all with the idea that some sort of reunion would happen one day on an important anniversary.  Despite John’s needing to distance himself from the whole Beatle circus, he knew deep down that it was a special achievement in his life, and that one day, he’d have to take the effort to put the Beatle thing its place and history, from his, and the other Beatles’ perspectives.  Anyway, that is stuff that has little to do with “Coming Up,” and its hilarious music video that you should watch right now.  “Feel it in my bones!”

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George Harrison, All Those Years Ago

Posted in George Harrison, The Beatles on December 12th, 2011 by Willie

If you’ve read this site enough, you know that I like making declarations, so here is a strong one.  “All Those Years Ago,” is required listening for Beatles fans and one of the best George Harrison songs ever.  It was written by George Harrison as a song for Ringo Starr to sing, but Ringo thought the vocal melody was too high for him.  So, it went to the scrap heap.  Then John Lennon was murdered on the streets of New York City, stunning the world.  I’m sure right away, Beatles fans the world over expected a musical tribute of some sort from Paul, George, and Ringo.  Rumors of a reunion must have been strong, despite the concept being horribly illogical with John’s passing.  On a certain level, the pressure must have been high on these guys to do something, which was of course, cruelly unfair.  If your best friend died, would anyone expect you to make a commercial pop song?  A song that would be judged by music critics?  Well, the guys did respond, they are artists after all.  Paul made “Here, Today,” a touching ballad.  George took his stalled Ringo project, changed the lyrics, and made it a John Lennon tribute.  In many ways, it would be the closet thing people got to a Beatles reunion until the “Anthology” in the mid 9os.  Ringo was on drums, George was singing lead, Paul was on bass and sang backup with his wife Linda.  Famed Beatle producer George Martin contributed to the track’s production along with Geoff Emerick, the famous Beatle studio engineer.  The song is a nostalgic wonder, mixing elements of Chuck Berry guitar riffage, Bob Dylan lyricism, and sweet Beatle vocal backing magic, all classic marks of George’s songwriting.  The lyrics tell the story of George’s love for John, and his agreement with John’s life philosophies.  It also includes attacks on John’s critics, my personal favorite part.  It accomplishes a lot of ideas both musically and lyrically, but leaves you wanting more.  That’s probably the point because the biggest crime in John’s death, outside the destruction of his family, was how this was a man taken too soon.  John was nowhere near finished as an artist and as a leader of peace loving people around the world.  George knew that more then anyone, and created a song that I, and many others, can’t help but replay over and over.  Enjoy.

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