‘Maggie Mae’ (usually spelled ‘Maggie May’) is a Liverpool folk song that a teenaged John Lennon played with The Quarrymen. The Beatles gave it a smirking turn during the sessions that became Let It Be and the result was captured in this 40-second clip that closes out Side One.
Last year I started a new ‘Decades’ series by focusing on my birth year, 1972, then 1982, 1992 and 2002, counting down my own favorite albums from each of those years and then 10-15 unfamiliar (to me) albums that received acclaim at the time.
I’m doing the same thing again, backing up a couple of years and focusing on 1970, ’80, ’90 and ’00. The next several weeks will be dedicated to 1970.
It could be a song considered a classic by many (like today’s SOTD, from The Replacement’s acclaimed album Let It Be) or a song loved by only the artist’s immediate family, by rest assured, somebody will go over the top on YouTube.
Apart from the title song, the most celebrated tune on Let it Be is John’s masterful ‘Across the Universe.’ This is one of those quintessential Beatles tunes that really gets to the heart of what made them special… the combination of simple melody, inspired production and enlightened lyrics.
It’s ironic that John repeats the phrase “nothing’s gonna change my world” when this song is a perfect example of how he and The Beatles changed everybody else’s world through their music.
Let it Be is one of my least favorite Beatles albums (all things being relative, of course… it’s better than just about everything but other Beatles records). Some of the songs are just ok and the great songs have been over-produced by Phil Spector.
I’m curious about the Let it Be… Naked release of a few years ago, which presented the album without Spector’s embellishments, although I’ve heard that one is a bit disappointing too.