Saturday, September 26, 2015

Songs of the Beatles' White Album, continued


Why Don’t We Do It In the Road?

Video:
Hear the song by clicking on:

Lyrics:
"Why Don't We Do It In The Road?"

Why don't we do it in the road? Mm
Why don't we do it in the road? Ah
Why don't we do it in the road? Mm
Why don't we do it in the road? Mm
No one will be watching us
Why don't we do it in the road?

Why don't we do it in the road?
Why don't we do it in the road?
Why don't we do it in the road?
Why don't we do it in the road?
No one will be watching us
Why don't we do it in the road?

Ooh

Why don't we do it in the road?
Why don't we do it in the road?
Why don't we do it, do it in the road?
Why don't we do it in the road?
No one will be watching us

About the song:

Written and sung by Paul McCartney although credited as Lennon-McCartney.

Only 1 minute 42 seconds in length and features only two lines repeated over and over to a 12 bar blues musical accompaniment.

McCartney did the vocals, thumped acoustic guitar, piano, electric guitar, bass and handclaps. Ringo Starr later added drums and more handclaps.

McCartney attended to all of it by himself whilst John Lennon and George Harrison were working on Piggies and Glass Onion.

McCartney wrote the song after seeing two monkeys copulating in the street while on retreat in Rishikesh, India with the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. He marvelled in the simplicity of this natural scenario when compared to the emotional turmoil of human relationships. He later said:
"I was up on a flat roof meditating and I'd see a troupe of monkeys walking along and the male just hopped onto her back and gave her one, as they say in the vernacular. Within two or three seconds he hopped off again, and looked around as if to say, 'it wasn't me,' and she looked around as if there had been some kind of mild disturbance but thought, huh, I must have imagined it. And I thought, bloody hell, that puts it all into a cocked hat, that's how simple the act of procreation is, this bloody monkey just hopping on and off. There is an urge, they do it, and it's done with. It's that simple."
Upon learning about the recording, Lennon was unhappy that McCartney recorded the song without him. In his 1980 interview with Playboy, he was asked about it:
Playboy: "Why Don't We Do It in the Road?" 
Lennon: That's Paul. He even recorded it by himself in another room. That's how it was getting in those days. We came in and he'd made the whole record. Him drumming. Him playing the piano. Him singing. But he couldn't—he couldn't—maybe he couldn't make the break from the Beatles. I don't know what it was, you know. I enjoyed the track. Still, I can't speak for George, but I was always hurt when Paul would knock something off without involving us. But that's just the way it was then. 
Playboy: You never just knocked off a track by yourself? 
Lennon: No. 
Playboy: "Julia?” 
Lennon: That was mine. 
Yoko Ono also commented that McCartney was the person who had hurt John Lennon most in the world.

In a 1981 interview, McCartney responded to Yoko’s comment:
"No one ever goes on about the times John hurt me ... Could I have hurt him more than the person who ran down his mother in his car?" . . .There's only one incident I can think of that John has mentioned publicly. It was when I went off with Ringo and did 'Why Don't We Do It in the Road'. It wasn't a deliberate thing. John and George were tied up finishing something and me and Ringo were free, just hanging around, so I said to Ringo, 'Let's go and do this. Anyway, he did the same with 'Revolution 9'. He went off and made that without me. No one ever says that. John is the nice guy and I'm the bastard. It gets repeated all the time.”
__________________________

I Will


Video:

Lyrics:
"I Will"

Who knows how long I've loved you
You know I love you still
Will I wait a lonely lifetime
If you want me to, I will

For if I ever saw you
I didn't catch your name
But it never really mattered
I will always feel the same

Love you forever and forever
Love you with all my heart
Love you whenever we're together
Love you when we're apart

And when at last I find you
Your song will fill the air
Sing it loud so I can hear you
Make it easy to be near you
For the things you do endear you to me
Oh, you know I will
I will

Mm mm mm mm mm mm mm mm mm
Da da da da da da da

About the song:

Written by Paul McCartney (credited to Lennon–McCartney) and features him on lead vocal, guitar, and "vocalbass". John Lennon is on percussion, cymbals and maracas, Ringo Starr is on bongos. George Harrison did not play (during The Beatlessessions, the Beatles often recorded in separate studios)

The song required 67 takes. The 65th take was used.

Written for McCartney’s first wife, Linda.
__________________________________

Julia:

I have previously written about John Lennon’s relationship with his mother, Julia. Read that post by clicking on:


Video:

Lyrics:
"Julia"

Half of what I say is meaningless
But I say it just to reach you, Julia

Julia, Julia, oceanchild, calls me
So I sing a song of love, Julia
Julia, seashell eyes, windy smile, calls me
So I sing a song of love, Julia

Her hair of floating sky is shimmering, glimmering
In the sun

Julia, Julia, morning moon, touch me
So I sing a song of love, Julia

When I cannot sing my heart
I can only speak my mind, Julia

Julia, sleeping sand, silent cloud, touch me
So I sing a song of love, Julia
Hum hum hum hum... calls me
So I sing a song of love for Julia, Julia, Julia

About the song:

"Julia" was written by John Lennon (credited to Lennon–McCartney) and features Lennon on vocals and acoustic guitar.

"Julia" was written for John's mother, Julia Lennon (1914–1958), who was knocked down and killed by a car driven by a drunk off-duty police officer when John was 17 years old. Julia Lennon had encouraged her son's interest in music and bought him his first guitar. But after she split with John's father, John was taken in by his aunt, Mimi, and Julia started a new family with another man; though she lived just a few miles from John, Julia did not spend much time with him for a number of years. Their relationship began to improve as he neared adolescence, though, and in the words of his half-sister, Julia Baird: "As he grew older, John would stay with us more often. He and Daddy got along well enough, and in the evenings when our daddy, a headwaiter, was at work, John and Mummy would sit together and listen to records. She was an avid Elvis Presley fan, and she and John would jive around the room to 'Heartbreak Hotel' and other early Elvis recordings. John inherited his love of music from her, and she encouraged him to start with piano and banjo, making him play a tune again and again until he got it right." 

"I lost her twice," Lennon said. "Once as a five-year-old when I was moved in with my auntie. And once again when she actually physically died." 

The song was also written for his future wife Yoko Ono, whose first name, which literally means "child of the sea" in Japanese, is echoed in the lyric "Oceanchild, calls me." Towards the end of his life, he often called Yoko "Mother." 

The line "Half of what I say is meaningless, but I say it just to reach you" was a slight alteration from Kahlil Gibran's "Sand and Foam" (1926) in which the original verse reads, "Half of what I say is meaningless, but I say it so that the other half may reach you". Lennon also adapted the lines "When I cannot sing my heart, I can only speak my mind" from Gibran's "When life does not find a singer to sing her heart she produces a philosopher to speak her mind".


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