A blog, if nothing else, is a vanity project. So indulge me. This post’s for me and the family/friends who are kind enough to read and encourage my witterings.
I’ve always been a Beatles fan. It went with the territory of having cool parents who had great taste in music (though I do also recall being subjected to some pretty dodgy prog rock.) Sharing the Beatles with us, though, was one of their better moves.
There were long car journeys when we would play “name the Beatles tune”, each taking it in turns to name and sing bits of songs we could remember. And I still have a mixtape somewhere that holds all my favourite tracks. I might even dig it out today and introduce a new generation to one of THE greatest ever pop bands. I am also very lucky to have a couple of original LPs and best of all, an EP of I wanna hold your hand, inherited from the parents’ record collections (they are of course welcome to borrow them back). Apparently, the EP is worth a pound or two these days.
Hearing the news of John Lennon’s tragic, early death is one of those seminal “where were you?” moments. I still recall it vividly and the tears openly shed in our house that evening. There was never any doubt in our family: John was the cool and the edgy Beatle. He was, still is, our favourite.
So, three Beatles tracks to honour the great man on what would have been his 70th birthday.
First up, my all time favourite Beatle song. There is something so very haunting and poignant about this song and it still brings tears to my eyes every time I hear it. Bring up the video clip, then minimise it – it’s only a record turning after all – but play it. Then play it again. Because it really is that good. Yes, it is.
The next one’s for the parents. Apparently this track – I saw her standing there – was playing the night they met. And guess what? They were just seventeen. I’m not sure if that is just dodgy memory syndrome but I’m sure they’ll be tickled to hear it again. But don’t do the dancing thing: the last time you tried it you were my age.
And finally, another of my faves. I love the story behind the recording of this one. They just couldn’t get it right, and take after take, John was getting hoarser and hoarser. Just when his voice was about to give up completely, that’s when he nailed it. Fortunately for us, his throat recovered. Twist and Shout – one of the sexiest, shimmiest dance numbers you’ll ever hear. (The video clip takes about 10 seconds to kick in but it’s worth the wait).
If you’ve got a favourite Beatles or Lennon track, feel free to share it….