Song of the Day #5,216: ‘Hello, Goodbye’ – The Beatles

Even the most basic and uninspiring Beatles songs have interesting back stories.

‘Hello, Goodbye’ is the sort of fluff that Paul McCartney could write in 15 minutes, and that’s kind of what he did. When Alistair Taylor, one of Brian Epstein’s assistants, asked McCartney about his songwriting process, Paul sat down at a harmonium and asked Taylor to do a call-and-response. Taylor would say the opposite of whatever word McCartney offered up, and Paul built the song around that framework.

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Song of the Day #4,971: ‘Your Mother Should Know’ – The Beatles

This is the third Random Weekend to feature The Beatles in this young year. Perhaps the Random iTunes Fairy heard my pledge to feature more Beatles songs and took on the mantle herself.

Today’s track, from 1967’s Magical Mystery Tour, is a fine example of just how great the band’s output is no matter how deep into their catalog you go. ‘Your Mother Should Know’ is a dancehall ditty written by Paul McCartney in a style his parents enjoyed.

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Song of the Day #4,524: ‘All You Need Is Love’ – The Beatles

In 1967, as many as 700 million people worldwide watched Our World, the first ever live international satellite broadcast. The show featured segments by 14 different countries, presenting scenes of their choice (Japan showed the construction of the Tokyo subway system, while Canada showed a rancher herding cattle).

The United Kingdom won the night by offering up The Beatles, at the height of their popularity, debuting a new song. John Lennon wrote ‘All You Need Is Love’ for the occasion, deliberately penning a tune so simple that anybody in the world could easily sing along.

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Song of the Day #486: ‘Strawberry Fields Forever’ – The Beatles

strawberryHere’s the other half of the one-two punch I alluded to yesterday.

John Lennon’s ‘Strawberry Fields Forever’ is also rooted in nostalgia, though not as overtly as McCartney’s ‘Penny Lane.’ Strawberry Field is the name of a Salvation Army house near Lennon’s childhood home, but the song isn’t really an exploration of that period of his life.

What it is is one of the band’s very best songs.

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Song of the Day #485: ‘Penny Lane’ – The Beatles

pennylaneThis weekend I’m highlighting one of the best one-two punches in music history, a pair of songs released on a “double-A-sided” single that are among the best The Beatles ever recorded.

Today’s track comes courtesy of Paul McCartney. ‘Penny Lane’ is his remembrance of a street in Liverpool, where he and John grew up. I don’t know if the fireman, banker, barber and nurse were actual people Paul encountered as a lad or inventions for this song, but he certainly paints a lovely picture.

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