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Posts Tagged ‘John Lennon’

At number 15 in Rolling Stone Magazine’s list of the 100 greatest Beatles songs is “Help!”. This John Lennon song is literally that, a cry for help. Lennon wrote it when he was depressed over the winter of 1964/65. It was recorded in April 1965, and was released as a single in July of the same year. It is also the opening track of their album Help!, which was released in August of 1965, a week or so after the movie of the same name was released.

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At number 15 in Rolling Stone Magazine’s list of the 100 greatest Beatles songs is “Help!”

Not surprisingly, Help! got to number 1 in many countries around the World, including the USA and Disunited Kingdom, but also Canada, Ireland and the Netherlands.

Help, I need somebody
Help, not just anybody
Help, you know I need someone, help

When I was younger (So much younger than) so much younger than today
(I never needed) I never needed anybody’s help in any way
(Now) But now these days are gone (These days are gone), I’m not so self assured
(I know I’ve found) Now I find I’ve changed my mind and opened up the doors

Help me if you can, I’m feeling down
And I do appreciate you being ’round
Help me get my feet back on the ground
Won’t you please, please help me

(Now) And now my life has changed in oh so many ways
(My independence) My independence seems to vanish in the haze
(But) But every now (Every now and then) and then I feel so insecure
(I know that I) I know that I just need you like I’ve never done before

Help me if you can, I’m feeling down
And I do appreciate you being ’round
Help me get my feet back on the ground
Won’t you please, please help me

When I was younger so much younger than today
I never needed anybody’s help in any way
(But) But now these days are gone (These days are gone), I’m not so self assured
(I know I’ve found) Now I find I’ve changed my mind and opened up the doors

Help me if you can, I’m feeling down
And I do appreciate you being round
Help me, get my feet back on the ground
Won’t you please, please help me, help me, help me, ooh

Here is a live version of Help!, performed on a British TV programme some two weeks before the famous concert at Shea Stadium. Enjoy!

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At number 16 in Rolling Stone Magazine’s list of the 100 greatest Beatles songs is “I Saw Her Standing There”. This song was recorded in February 1963 and released on their debut album Please Please Me in March 1963. It is the opening track on their debut album, and was never released as a single in the Disunited Kingdom. However, in the USA it was the B-side of their debut single released by Capitol Records, with “I Want to Hold Your Hand” on the A-side. This single was The Beatles’ breakthrough in the USA, getting to number 1 in January 1964 and staying at number 1 for 7 weeks.

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At number 16 in Rolling Stone Magazine’s list of the 100 greatest Beatles songs is “I Saw Her Standing There”

The song, written mainly by Paul McCartney but with some contribution from John Lennon, was written in 1962. McCartney scribbled the lyrics in a notebook from the grammar school that he had attended as a teenager.

(1,2,3,4!)

Well, she was just 17
You know what I mean
And the way she looked was way beyond compare
So how could I dance with another (Ooh)
When I saw her standing there

Well she looked at me, and I, I could see
That before too long I’d fall in love with her
She wouldn’t dance with another (Whooh)
When I saw her standing there

Well, my heart went “boom”
When I crossed that room
And I held her hand in mine…

Whoah, we danced through the night
And we held each other tight
And before too long I fell in love with her
Now I’ll never dance with another (Whooh)
Since I saw her standing there

Well, my heart went “boom”
When I crossed that room
And I held her hand in mine…

Whoah, we danced through the night
And we held each other tight
And before too long I fell in love with her
Now I’ll never dance with another (Whooh)
Since I saw her standing there

Here are The Beatles performing “I Saw Her Standing There” live. Enjoy!

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At number 17 in Rolling Stone Magazine’s list of the 100 greatest Beatles songs is “Ticket to Ride”. This song was recorded in February 1965 and released as a single in April 1965. The B-side to the single was “Yes It Is”. Unusually for a Beatles single, it was also included on an album, in this case their 1965 album Help!, but this is more because the song is in the movie, and the album was essentially a soundtrack of the movie.

According to the screen-capture of the Rolling Stone blurb below, its writers were Lennon and McCartney. I defer to their greater knowledge, but I have always thought of “Ticket to Ride” as a John Lennon composition. He certainly takes the lead vocal, and its style is very much Lennon rather than a collaboration between him and McCartney. The single got to number 1 in the Disunited Kingdom, the USA, and many other countries.

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At number 17 in Rolling Stone Magazine’s list of the 100 greatest Beatles songs is “Ticket to Ride”

Here are the lyrics for this great song. It is one of my favourite Beatles songs from 1965.

I think I’m gonna be sad
I think it’s today, yeah
The girl that’s driving me mad
Is going away

She’s got a ticket to ride
She’s got a ticket to ride
She’s got a ticket to ride
But she don’t care

She said that living with me
Is bringing her down, yeah
For she would never be free
When I was around

She’s got a ticket to ride
She’s got a ticket to ride
She’s got a ticket to ride
But she don’t care

I don’t know why she’s riding so high
She ought to think twice
She ought to do right by me
Before she gets to saying goodbye
She ought to think twice
She ought to do right by me

I think I’m gonna be sad
I think it’s today, yeah
The girl that’s driving me mad
Is going away, yeah

Oh, she’s got a ticket to ride
She’s got a ticket to ride
She’s got a ticket to ride
But she don’t care

I don’t know why she’s riding so high
She ought to think twice
She ought to do right by me
Before she gets to saying goodbye
She ought to think twice
She ought to do right by me

She said that living with me
Is bringing her down, yeah
For she would never be free
When I was around

Ah, she’s got a ticket to ride
She’s got a ticket to ride
She’s got a ticket to ride
But she don’t care

My baby don’t care, my baby don’t care
My baby don’t care, my baby don’t care
My baby don’t care, my baby don’t care (fade out)

Here is a version of “Ticket to Ride” being performed live by the Beatles in 1965 concert at Wembley Stadium, as part of the New Musical Express Poll Winners Concert. Enjoy!

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Today I thought I would post this gallery of Beatles photographs which I came across a few months ago. Judging from the appearance of the Beatles, I am guessing they were taken in 1965, during the Rubber Soul and Help! period. One of them appears to be a still from a scene in the movie Help! Enjoy……

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UPDATE: Unfortunately, to reduce my use of the allocated storage space for images, I have had to remove the gallery. This is what the gallery looked like.

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A screen capture of the gallery. I have had to remove the individual images to save space. Sorry!

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On Monday I blogged about the death of David Bowie, who died on Sunday (10th of January) of liver cancer at the age of 69. I wanted to put something up quickly, so that blog I wrote on Monday was written within 15-20 minutes of hearing the news of his death. I actually heard it breaking at 7am Greenwich Mean Time, I had been listening to the radio since about 6am.

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Now I have had a few days to collect my thoughts, I have decided I will do a more detailed and complete blogpost about his death. In fact, this will be a two-part blog, on the 26th I will do a part 2, as I need to get back home to Cardiff to access something about Bowie which I want to share in the second part.

When the news broke of his death I was overcome with a profound sadness, the most sad I have felt about the death of a singer or celebrity since the tragic killing of John Lennon in 1980. This reaction surprised me, but as they were playing Bowie’s songs on the radio throughout the morning I realised that Bowie’s music had been the soundtrack to my teenage years. I always preferred 60s music when I was growing up in the 1970s but, of all the music being produced in the 1970s,  it was Bowie and Queen’s music that I liked the most. As they played song after song of Bowie’s on Monday morning, I wept for the memory of my teenage years.

I also got emotional thinking about the strong connection that Bowie had with John Lennon, who was (and still remains) my music hero. When I read Yoko Ono’s tribute to Bowie I could not contain my tears. This is what she said (you can read it on her webpage here).

John and David respected each other. They were well matched in intellect and talent. As John and I had very few friends we felt David was as close as family.

After John died, David was always there for Sean and me. When Sean was at boarding school in Switzerland, David would pick him up and take him on trips to museums and let Sean hang out at his recording studio in Geneva.

For Sean this is losing another father figure. It will be hard for him, I  know. But we have some sweet memories which will stay with us forever.

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Another very moving tribute was tweeted by Iggy Pop

David’s friendship was the light of my life. I never met such a brilliant person. He was the best there is.

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Bowie was probably the artist of anyone I can think of who changed most frequently throughout his career. The chameleon of pop. He was, by his own admission, a very restless person (in fact he put it down to Attention Deficit Disorder). He would quickly get bored with one incarnation and changed to something different. I didn’t like all of his incarnations, particularly his heavy metal ‘Tin Men’ phase; but I liked many of his ever-changing styles.

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Here is a small gallery of some of his incarnations. From hippy to Major Tom, to Ziggy Stardust to Aladdin Sane to the Thin White Duke and his  ‘Let’s Dance’ period, he was the consummate restless artist. And, he will be sorely missed.

It would be wonderful to think that Bowie has reunited with his dear friend John Lennon and that they have been catching up, since last seeing each other the week before Lennon was murdered in December 1980.

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At number 45 in Rolling Stone Magazine’s 100 greatest Beatles songs is “No Reply”, which appears on their fourth album Beatles for Sale, in fact it is the opening track of the first side. One of the things I like most about this song is the wonderful tone of John Lennon’s voice; it sounds slightly nasal and harmonises beautifully with Paul McCartney’s in the chorus. According to Wikipedia, Lennon, who mainly wrote the song although it has some input from McCartney, originally intended to sing the higher part of the harmony in the chorus, but his voice had deteriorated due to excessive use (probably too much touring and live performing), and so he and McCartney switched in the chorus with Lennon singing the lower part.



At number 45 in Rolling Stone Magazine's list of the 100 greatest Beatles songs is "No Reply".

At number 45 in Rolling Stone Magazine’s list of the 100 greatest Beatles songs is “No Reply”.



The song talks of an unfaithful girlfriend, the person in the song suspects his girlfriend is seeing someone else. It shows a different, more vulnerable and less confident side to Lennon, or at least in the character he is playing in his songs. If you haven’t listened to Beatles for Sale (or haven’t listened to it in a while) then I urge you to do so; it is a wonderful album with great songs and beautiful harmonising from Lennon, McCartney and George Harrison.


This happened once before
When I came to your door
No reply
They said it wasn’t you
But I saw you peep through your window

I saw the lie, I saw the lie

I know that you saw me
As I looked up to see your face
I tried to telephone
They said you were not home
That’s a lie
‘Cause I know where you’ve been

I saw you walk in your door
I nearly died, I nearly died
Cause’ you walked hand in hand
With another man in my place

If I were I’d realise that I
Love you more than any other guy
And I’ll forgive the lies that I
Heard before when you gave me no reply

I’ve tried to telephone
They said you were not home
That’s a lie
‘Cause I know where you’ve been
I saw you walk in your door
I nearly died, I nearly died

‘Cause you walked hand in hand
With another man in my place
No reply, no reply


Here is a video of this great song. The only working one I could find on YouTube is from The Beatles cartoon series, and so there is a bit of cartoon fun before the song 🙂 And, this video has not been up long, so it may stop working soon 😦 Enjoy!





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At number 3 in Rolling Stone Magazine’s 500 greatest songs of all time is “Imagine” by John Lennon. This song was recorded in the late spring of 1971, and released as a single in the USA in October of the same year, when it got to number 3. The song was not released as a single in the Disunited Kingdom until 1975, when it was used to promote a Lennon compilation album “Shaved Fish”; it got to number 6. It was re-released in the DUK after Lennon’s death in 1980, and this time it got to number 1 where it stayed for four weeks. It has gone on to become the best-selling single of Lennon’s solo career, and is also his best known solo composition.



At number 30 in Rolling Stone Magazine's '500 Greatest Songs of all Time' is "I Walk the Line" by Johnny Cash.

At number 3 in Rolling Stone Magazine’s ‘500 Greatest Songs of all Time’ is “Imagine” by John Lennon.



The lyrics are very simple yet very powerful (and naive, which Lennon freely admitted). He would say in later interviews that several of the ideas in the song were inspired by Yoko Ono’s 1964 book “Grapefruit”, but that he was too “macho” at the time to give her proper recognition for her part in the song. Lennon had only learnt to play the piano in 1970, and yet the melody of “Imagine” is deceptively complex.

It has been performed by many other artists, including recently by Lady Gaga at the opening ceremony of the multi-sport European Games at Baku (see below). But, despite the numerous covers, Lennon’s original is still the best known version.


Imagine there’s no heaven
It’s easy if you try
No hell below us
Above us only sky
Imagine all the people
Living for today…

Imagine there’s no countries
It isn’t hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people
Living life in peace…

You may say I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope someday you’ll join us
And the world will be as one

Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people
Sharing all the world…

You may say I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope someday you’ll join us
And the world will live as one


Here is the original video of this great song. Enjoy!




Here is Lady Gaga’s recent cover, performed at the opening ceremony of the European Games in Baku.






Who has performed your favourite version of this song?

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