More or less in ascending order. These are the Beatles songs I most want to hear right now, so I’m listening to them and writing them down.
Everything that made the Beatles great was there on their first album. They recorded better later and developed their ideas fantastically, of course. If you ask people what makes the Beatles great, one of the first two things you hear will be “the singing.” I contend that they were a great band without any singing, and even without Ringo. I dig the shit out of this song, and if any of you musicians would care to punk it up with me I’d be delighted. This is 1962 at the Tony Sheridan session in Hamburg with Pete Best on drums, song credited Lennon/Harrison:
Fast-forward to Revolver. I believe Lawr loves this one too. The better the song, the more all of them are at their best:
They were also a smoking rocknroll band and the best cover band by a thousand miles. They made MOTOWN better, they exponentialized Buddy Holly and Carl Perkins and Larry Williams and the Shirelles, and they gave Chuck Berry and Little Richard runs for their money. This neglected aspect is worth more than two songs but I don’t want to BORE you or anything:
Love Ringo especially on that one. Speaking of Ringo, might as well continue with the first song on their first album, talking ’bout boys:
Think the New York Dolls copped any ideas from that? The Beatles copped ideas from the Everly Bros., not only the singing but the abundant use of acoustic guitars. They took it much further, especially for rhythmic twists. as on this next one. Also John’s low harmony is one of his many strokes of genius, and the way he breaks out of it is why we are here:
I like that vein let’s milk it, and if anything this is even better:
Love the way they double the piano and guitar in the solo, and once again that rhythm is so swinging/rocking, Ringo’s fills especially. So I’m thinking how I’m neglecting Paul and that made me think of George. One of the greatest albums of all time is George’s Greatest Beatles Songs, and this isn’t even my fave. But talk about your unusually compelling melodies, not to mention the harmony on the chorus, not to mention Paul’s bass.
So I might as well do my fave George tune, as it happens his first:
Actually, if you said that Don’t Bother Me is the very best Beatles’ song ever I wouldn’t argue. You can laugh at me I don’t care, I will laugh in turn when you tell me that “A Day in the Life” is greater. I put it this way: if “A Day in the Life” was the Beatles’ first record, they never would have made it. Had the latter day Beatles sprung on the world in 1967, they would have been a cult band like Love. Songs like Don’t Bother Me are what made the Beatles the phenomenon they were.
Damn, I’m not going to get a Paulie in the Top 10. It seems wrong but too bad, he’s done very well in the songs I’ve already played. I think Paul’s best songs are You Won’t See Me and What You’re Doing. On another day they would make my list. But this is now. I think I said on this blog that Anytime At All was my #1, but on this I’ll make it #2. John at his desperate best:
So for #1, I don’t know how it is possible to hear a song so many times and still get chills. How rare is that magic? The bridge of this song is too perfect for words:
So I get 30 points to divide up. How about 6 points each for No Reply and Anytime At All, 4 points for Don’t Bother Me, and 2 points each for the other seven.