Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Meet The Beatles...Again

Ask a random person on the street what their favorite Beatles song is, they'll most likely respond with Hey Jude.

Ask a Beatles fan the same question and they'll most likely respond with Day in the Life.

Ask that pretentious ass that works down the hall from you that dresses in women's jeans and hair gel and he'll most likely say Tomorrow Never Knows.

Ask the kid that lives down the street who you suspect dismembered your dog two years ago and he'll most likely say Helter Skelter.

The point isn't that there is no right or wrong answer (though you may want to keep an eye on that kid, especially if you replaced your dog), the point is there are a lot of answers. The Beatles wrote and played a lot of classic songs, and many can be considered their best.

Which is why I tried to make a list of underrated Beatles songs, that no person would ever think of as one of their classics...

SeeqPod - Playable Search

Dig A Pony
Lennon hated this, and I think I can see why. I still like it. It's randomness doesn't come close to I Am the Walrus, but it's still cool.

Hey Bulldog
Off of Yellow Submarine, it originally was called, Hey Bullfrog - which I guess would have made more sense to the motif of that album, but whatever. Here's a video of the recording of it, possibly the last time all 4 were seen being happy together.

Glass Onion
Off The Beatles The Beatles (aka The White Album), I enjoy this song because it cryptically states that, "the Walrus was Paul," fueling more speculation that Paul had died and been replaced by a look alike. What a great controversy. The song also references a number of other songs from their catalog.

In My Life
Probably the most popular song on this list.

Martha My Dear
Apparently there's a lot more going on in this song than I at first thought. Jesus, these guys were talented.

Sexy Sadie
More connections to the Manson trial and the influential Indian period.

Got to Get You Into My Life
Lennon said this was one of Paul's best. Good enough for me.

Oh! Darling
I always thought this was one of the more offbeat songs The Beatles did; not because it was weird, but specifically because it wasn't weird. It was very traditional.

Lovely Rita
Another song that has a "clue" about Paul being dead.

You've Got to Hide Your Love Away
Ok, so this might be my favorite Beatles song.

What sparked this silly post? 50% of The Popcorn Trick is Beatles fans. The other 50% suggests the Beatles are overrated. His argument seems to be that while they deserve a certain amount of credit for what they achieved, there were many other bands around during the same period doing similar things (The Rolling Stones) that don't get enough credit. My argument is that he is an idiot. You can decide on your own what side you fall on.

It's funny, because I will usually respond and suggest The Beatles are underrated (mostly to annoy him). But I do believe there is some merit to the argument that they are indeed underrated. Sure, they are usually mentioned at the top of music lists, and they still get airtime on radio programs across the world. But there are also generations of people that don't understand the mark they left on music. They hear the Beatles and simply think, "music from the 60s."

And that's a shame.

Regardless, I'm not here to settle the debate or educate people on the genius of the Beatles, I'm here to give you a list of underrated Beatles songs. Again, that might be a difficult concept to get your head around, because it's the rare person that hasn't heard the Beatles' music. The list however is more about the gems you can find in their catalog that aren't the standards you hear all the time.


Cline said...

Wait... You do things just to annoy me? Way to be a friend, a-hole.

The SeeqPod applet is blocked here at work, but I'm going to go with "In My Life" as my favorite Beatles song. Is it on your list?

I still maintain that a band universally regarded as the best of all time where George Harrison is the 3rd-best songwriter (by a large margin) is incapable of being underrated.

And you bastardized my Stones argument. It wasn't that they were doing similar things, it was that the things they were doing differently (harder-edged R&B/Blues rock) are more my taste than what the Beatles were doing.

Hell, I'd probably take the Faces over the Beatles if I had both on my iPod to choose from.

I appreciate the Beatles and what they've done, but they don't hit me like other bands do.

Goose said...

It was going to be "Underrated Songs by the Faces," but that would have been their entire catalog.

Cline said...

Outside of "Ooh La La", I'd agree with you.

Goose said...

Like anyone knows that the Faces sing Ooh La La.

hendge said...

As you know, I'm not a HUGE Beatles guy either. Though I do like them, I can generally get by with the Greatest Hits albums and be fine. Perhaps it says something, though, that a couple of what would probably be considered "underrated" Beatles songs have become favorites of mine as covers. It actually has led me back to the original versions for which I have gained greater appreciation. I guess that means I really should dig deeper into their catalog instead of waiting for some other band I like to cover them. Too much work, though.

Anyway, "Dig A Pony" is actually one of them -- God Street Wine did a killer cover of that live for many years. Loved it.

"Cry Baby Cry" is another. Phish, of course, covered the entire White album one Halloween. But this one stuck in their rotation for many years after. They did a lot of Beatles covers, but I think this was probably my favorite.

Finally, "She Said, She Said" might be my favorite Beatles tune. The Gov't Mule version is what caught my attention first.