Showing posts from April, 2021

What did John Lennon want to sound 'like the end of the world'?

Many of the best Beatles songs start and/or finish with a bang: the opening chord or A HARD DAY'S NIGHT, for example. The opening of A DAY IN THE LIFE is unusually muted in this respect, perhaps indicating shift into more subtle musical territory.  Where A DAY IN THE LIFE delivers its knockout blow is in its finale. Originally recorded as a modest  hummed  E Major vocal chord, it evolved into what Jonathan Gould describes as:  "a forty-second meditation on finality that leaves each member of the audience listening with a new kind of attention and awareness to the sound of nothing at all". [66] ByTom Swain CC BY-SA 3.0, This was achieved using absurdly primitive technology in today's term. Lennon, McCartney, Evans and Martin played the chord on three pianos. Each was then multi-tracked four times. For the final chord of  A DAY IN THE LIFE  Lennon had asked George Martin for a  'a sound like t

What is The Beatles best selling studio album?

Releasing a double album was considered commercially foolhardy in 1968. LPs, as they were then called, were much more expensive than they are today. A double album seemed to price out the teenagers, still considered The Beatles main market. There were other seemingly quixotic features. Officially called The Beatles it was immediately dubbed The White Album because of its distinctive Richard Hamilton designed cover. This went down a storm with art students but marketing executives were less impressed. They reasonably concluded that there were not enough art students to create the sales need for a gold record. 'What has happened to the Yeah-Yeahs? Nor did  The White Album     attempt to reach out to those not yet bitten by the Beatle bug. There were no singles to entice the casual record buyer. All the material was new to most listeners. Even trend-setting disc jockeys were wrong-footed by the sheer scale of the musical experimentation.  And the number of tracks - an unheard of twen

Which Beatles song consists only of a chorus?

'Verse 1' consists of  the chorus from SPLHCB Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band   opens with the title track that establishes the concept (a reunion concert for the eponymous group). Crowd noise blends the sound of orchestral   musicians tuning-up to create the illusion of a live performance.  The song climaxes with the MC (McCartney) introducing 'the one and only Billy Shears' and the single chorus builds to a crescendo. Concept Arguably, the band reunion concept begins to fade at this point. Later Lennon would dismissively describe the album as 'a bunch of mainly Paul's songs'. This may be harsh but it was apparent during recording that the concept was not really sustained.  The Beatles road manager, Neil Aspinall, pointed  out that the fictional band appeared to disappear after the opening track. He suggested that listener needed to be reminded of the live performance on side two. The result was the penultimate track  " Sgt. Pepper's Lone

Who was John Lennon's biological father?

  Julia Stanley first met Alfred (aka Alf/Fred/Freddie) Lennon in 1929, when she was fifteen and he was two years older.   They met in Sefton Park, exchanging come banter from the start. Both worked in junior office jobs and superficially had similar temperaments. Julia was vivacious, fun loving, a natural rebel.  Alf was a popular with his peers, ‘a rascal. An  absolute  character’ said one pal. There was also a shared musicality. Julia loved singing and played banjo. Alf sang, specialising in comedy songs and comically mangling the words of standards. Like his brothers - and later his son - Alf played the harmonica - the 'mouth iron' as it was known in Liverpool. Too Common? The rebel meets rascal combination did not go down well with Julia’s family: the tight-knit Stanley clan. They saw Alf as ‘low’ - and they were not referring to his diminutive stature (he was 5.3”)   The Stanleys always believed they were several notches above the Lennons, claiming better breeding, educat