Union Street Journal

Beatles Top 25 Songs

Giovanni Machado, Sports Editor

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25- Twist and Shout 

Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b-VAxGJdJeQ

Main Composers: Phil Medley and Bert Russell

Album: Please Please me

You probably know this one, “Twist and Shout” has been passed by through generations, and has become one of the symbols of the Beatles; however, something that not much people know is that “Twist and Shout”, even though was popularized by the Beatles, is not originally a Beatles song. “Twist and Shout” was written by Phil Medley and Bert Russell and was first recorded in 1961 by a vocal group named “The Top Notes” in a very different version than the famous one we all know. You may also know this song from the classic movie “Ferris Bueller’s day off” where Ferris Bueller sings this song in the iconic parade scene.

This song was recorded in the same day other 10 songs were recorded for their first album “Please please me” and it was the last song to be recorded that day because John Lennon had a flu, and since Lennon sings this song basically screaming, they left it as last so he could, as their producer George Martin said: “Rip his throat out” and not affect the rest of the album.

24- Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds

Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=naoknj1ebqI

Main Composer: John Lennon

Album: Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band

“Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds” is a symbol of John Lennon’s and the band’s most psychedelic period. The song created a lot of controversy when it was released because people claimed that “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds” stood for LSD; however, Lennon always insisted that the song never was and never will be about LSD. “My son Julian came home with a drawing and showed me this strange-looking woman flying around. I said, ‘What is it?’ and he said, ‘It’s Lucy in the sky with diamonds,’ and I thought, ‘That’s beautiful.’ I immediately wrote a song about it,” Lennon said during an interview to the Rolling Stones. Later on, Lennon also said that when writing the song, he visualized this “image of the female who would someday come save me – a ‘girl with kaleidoscope eyes’ who would come out of the sky.” And as it turned out, Lennon said that somehow that song was also about Yoko Ono, his future wife, who he hadn’t met before writing the song. Whatever the song is about, it is definitely one of the most psychedelic songs of the Beatles, and even though sound doesn’t have color, this song manages to be very colorful for those who hear it, and get on board this weird and great psychedelic trip.   

 

23- I’m Only Sleeping

Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BT5j9OQ7Sh0

Main composer: John Lennon

Album: Revolver

It is not a secret that the Beatles were innovators, and loved to innovate in their songs, and the song “I’m Only Sleeping” is a clear example of that. The four Beatles were always trying new stuff on the studio, things that nobody had done back there. George Harrison had the idea of putting a guitar solo in the song, then he reversed the guitar solo, and the other Beatles just loved it. “It played backwards, and, ‘What the hell is going on?’ Those effects! Nobody knew how those sounded then. We said, ‘My God, that is fantastic! Can we do that for real?’… So that was what we did and that was where we discovered backwards guitar. It was a beautiful solo actually. It sounds like something you couldn’t play,” Paul McCartney said in his biography “Many Years From Now” written by Barris Miler.

This song also created a lot of controversial because many people, again, accused the song to be about drugs because of many lines that in theory make implicit the fact that John Lennon is ‘high’, lines such as “When I’m in the middle of a dream, stay in bed, float up stream,”and “Please, don’t spoil my day, I’m miles away and after all I’m only sleeping.” And again, Lennon denied it. Lennon claimed that the song was about McCartney’s habit of waking him up for afternoon songwriting sessions at Lennon’s house. But it is music, so it can be open to as many interpretations as we want, and that is the beauty about many Beatles lyrics, we can interpret in as many different ways as we want.

 

22- All My Loving

Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TSpiwK5fig0

Main Composer: Paul McCartney

Album: With the Beatles

“Close your eyes and I’ll kiss you, tomorrow I’ll miss you, remember I’ll always be true” All my loving is about a man saying goodbye to his lover, which sounds as a kind of sad song, however, somehow it is the completely opposite. “All My Loving” is one of those songs that you just can’t  just hold still while listening to it, the whole vibe and tone of the song are so happy that just makes you feel like you need to move your body.

All my loving is considered McCartney’s first major work “It was the first song I’d ever written the words first. I never wrote words first, it was always some kind of accompaniment,” McCartney said  in his biography “Many Years From Now” written by Barris Miler.

All my loving was also one of the main symbols of the Beatlemania, being the first song to be performed at the historical night of Feb. 9, 1964, a Sunday where over 73 million Americans were watching the Beatles perform at The Ed Sullivan Show. This song is also known as when Paul McCartney started to play a bigger part in the band, since before John was considered the leader. writer and lead singer of the band.  

 

21- I Am the Walrus

Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t1Jm5epJr10

Main Composer: John Lennon

Album: Magical Mystery Tour

Yellow matter custard dripping from a dead dog’s eye. Crabalocker fishwife, pornographic priestess. Boy, you’ve been a naughty girl, you let your knickers down.” How I mentioned before, the Beatles’ songs can have many different meanings and each songs passes a different and unique message, well, the meaning of this song is literally none. John Lennon wrote this nonsense song because he heard that British school kids were studying Beatles lyrics to discern their hidden meanings. So this song was basically Lennon telling the students “Good luck finding meaning on this one.” Even though the song is a open joke and Lennon confirmed many times that the song has no meaning at all, people for some reason still think there is a deeper meaning to this bunch of words.  “His words don’t mean a lot. People draw so many conclusions and it’s ridiculous… What does it really mean, ‘I am the eggman’? It could have been the pudding basin for all I care. It’s not that serious.” Lennon said in the documentary “Anthology”.

Even though the song has no meaning at all, is still is one of the best Beatles song just because of its vibe and the psychedelic feeling you get when hearing it. This song and the album “Magical Mystery Tour” are definitely two symbols of the psychedelic era of the Beatles

 

20- The Fool on the Hill

Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wsRatIMUSu8

Main Composer: Paul McCartney

Album: Magical Mystery Tour.

The fool on the hill is very self-explanatory name. The song basically talks about a man who lives in a hill, everybody thinks he is a fool, however, people don’t know how wise and intelligent he is, but “he never listens to them. He knows that they’re the fools.” Paul McCartney said that when writing the song, he thought of someone like Maharishi Mahesh, an Indian guru, who the Beatles met in 1967, and became fascinated with his philosophies. Maharishi played a very important role in the Beatles lives after 1967, and many people consider the Beatles’ visit to Maharishi’s retreat as “the beginning of the end.”   

I believe that what makes this song great is the Paul’s capability of making people connect with the main character, a man who no one gives attention, and everyone think that he is a fool, but on the other side, the man sees the people as the fools. and I think that many people throughout the whole world can connect and relate to this lyrics, being it with the fact of feeling a outsider from society in general, or maybe just with a certain group of people, or maybe just a teenager with his or hers parents.

 

19- Yellow Submarine

Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m2uTFF_3MaA

Main Composer: Paul McCartney

Albums: Revolver 

Yellow Submarine is probably the most “childish” Beatles song, and because of that, is a divisive song between Beatles songs. Either you think it is a great song or not, it is unmistakable one of the most famous songs of the Beatles, and probably one of those songs that everyone knows, either being a Beatles fan or not. The song got so popular, that inspired the animation movie that carries the same name, “Yellow Submarine”, where the four Beatles are the protagonists, and need to save pepperland from the music hating blue meanies who freeze everyone and banish music.

Paul McCartney admitted that the song is indeed meant for kids, and that he got his inspiration from Ringo. “I thought, with Ringo being so good with children — a knockabout-uncle type — it might not be a bad idea for him to have a children’s song.” McCartney said in the documentary “Anthology”.Years later, Yellow Submarine inspired Ringo to write an unofficial sequel to the song on Abbey Road named “Octopus’ Garden”.

 

18- While My Guitar Gently Weeps

Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VJDJs9dumZI

Main Composer: George Harrison

Album: The Beatles (The White Album)

While My Guitar Gently Weeps is George’s greatest contribution to the White album and certainly one of his most memorable songs of all time. George wrote it at his mother’s house and was inspired by Chinese I Ching, the Book of Changes, a book that defends the idea that whatever happens is all meant to be, and that there’s no such thing as coincidence. So inspired by this idea, he grabbed a random book, opened at a random page, and saw the words “Gently weeps”. Right after that George started writing the song.

George brought the song to the studio, however, Lennon and McCartney didn’t give George the attention he deserved for that song “They weren’t taking it seriously and I don’t think they were even all playing on it, and so I went home that night thinking, ‘Well, that’s a shame,’ because I knew the song was pretty good.” George said during the documentary “Anthology”. George not getting the deserved attention made him very mad, so the next day he asked the famous Guitarist Eric Clapton to play in his song. Clapton declined it a first, since no one had ever played on a Beatles record besides the four Beatles. But George insisted saying that it was his song, so he would like him to play on it. So the next day George showed up at the studio with Clapton and told the other Beatles that he would play on that song. “ It was good because that then made everyone act better. Paul got on the piano and played a nice intro and they all took it more seriously,” George said. So in this song, the lead guitar is actually played by Eric Clapton, and it worked very well, since this song has probably the best guitar solo of all Beatles songs.

 

17- Penny Lane

Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S-rB0pHI9fU

Main Composer: Paul McCartney

Album: Magical Mystery Tour

Penny Lane was the name of a street in Liverpool, which is described during the song, but now, after the great success of the song, it is the name of the whole neighborhood where Paul McCartney and John Lennon used to live in.

“Penny Lane” is not only about the street, but mainly about McCartney’s experience in Liverpool as a child and teenager. McCartney started writing “Penny Lane” right after the band recorded the song “Strawberry Fields Forever”, which is about Lennon’s experience in Liverpool as a child as teenager. “ “The song was generated by a kind of ‘I can do just as well as you can, John,” George Martin, the Beatles’ producer said.

Nowadays, Penny lane is one of the most touristic points in Liverpool, and Beatles’ fans are always visiting places that was eternalized in the song, such as the barber shop, the  roundabout, and the famous sign which says “Penny Lane”. So if someday you go to Liverpool, don’t forget to “stop and say hello” in this magical place.

 

16- Nowhere Man

Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8scSwaKbE64

Main Composer: John Lennon

Album: Rubber Soul

Nowhere man, is Lennon’s song about a man who makes “all his nowhere plans for nobody” and “knows not where he is going to”. This song is basically about John Lennon himself, and all his feelings of isolation, even in the middle of the Beatlemania. This song is a main sign of the transition between the more happy and relationships related songs, to how Lennon described it lyrics that are more “meaningful”. Nowhere man came to Lennon’s mind exactly when nothing could come to his mind when he was trying to write about something more meaningful. “I’d spent five hours that morning trying to write a song that was meaningful and good and I finally gave up and lay down. Then Nowhere Man came, words and music, the whole thing, as I lay down. I thought of myself sitting there, doing nothing and going nowhere. Once I’d thought of that, it was easy,” Lennon said in the book “All We Are Saying” by David Sheff.

Nowhere man is also one of the best Beatles song because of Lennon’s capability of making people to connect to the song’s main character, the nowhere man. A man who doesn’t know what he wants for life, and can’t fit with society. In the song Lennon asks the listener “Isn’t he a bit like you and me?”

15- I Want to Hold Your Hand

Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jenWdylTtzs

Main Composer: John Lennon and Paul McCartney

Album: *It was just released as a single*

I want to hold your hand is probably the greatest symbol of the Beatlemania, and of the British invasion. The single itself sold more than one million copies, and was on number one spot for five weeks straight. John Lennon and Paul McCartney wrote this song specifically thinking about the American market. “From Me To You was released – a flop in America. She Loves You – a big hit in England, big number one in England – a flop in the USA. Nothing until I Want To Hold Your Hand.” Paul McCartney said in the documentary “Anthology.”

It is really curious to notice how music changed from 1964 to today. The title itself “I want to hold your hand” is a pretty simple song about a boy who longs for a girl. “Oh please say to me you’ll let me be your man. And please say to me you’ll let me hold your hand.” and nowadays I would say that songs are much more straightforward than that. But even with this difference from music from the 60’ and today’ music, “I want to hold your hand” is still a great song, a song that when it starts playing, it is really hard to just sit still and not dance to it.

14- Eleanor Rigby

Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HuS5NuXRb5Y

Main Composer: Paul McCartney

Album: Revolver

Eleanor Rigby is more of a story than a song. It tells the story of two characters, Eleanor Rigby, and Father McKenzie. And both characters suffer from the same issue, loneliness. The song talks about this old lady named Eleanor Rigby who picks up rice in a church, and about a priest named McKenzie. Both characters are very lonely, but Eleanor Rigby is more of a main character, who even with all the loneliness, is full of dreams;however, Eleanor Rigby dies in the church, and Father McKenzie writes a sermon that no one hears, because no one shows up to Eleanor’s funeral.

This is probably Paul McCartney’s “darkest” song. He wrote this song based on this old ladies he used to hang out with when he was a kid who were always telling him great stories about World War II. Although they had great stories they were very lonely, “When I was really little I lived in a housing-state, and I enjoyed sitting around with this old ladies, because they had great stories, and there was one in particular that I used to go shopping for her because she wouldn’t get out, and I thought about her, and I got that image on my mind about this old lonely lady.” McCartney said in interview for GQ.

McCartney claims that he just came up with random names, however, in the village where John Lennon used to live, and both McCartney and Lennon used to hang out, there is a gravestone with the name “Eleanor Rigby”. Even McCartney was surprised when people found out about this. “Did I subconsciously know that name? I don’t know.”

 

13- With a Little Help From My Friends

Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0C58ttB2-Qg

Main Composers: John Lennon and Paul McCartney

Album: Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band

“With a Little Help From My Friends” is the second song of Sgt. Pepper’s and it is brilliantly sung by Billy Shears, also known as Ringo Starr. Sgt. Pepper’s is a piece of art almost all designed by Paul McCartney with some saying from the other Beatles. Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band is the name of a fictitious band though out by McCartney, and the Album is not a regular album, it is more of a band’s concert, and since the whole idea is that the Beatles are another band, in the first song, Ringo is introduced as Billy Shears. And Billy Shears is just terrific, his deep voice is very different from all the others’ the Beatles, and matches perfectly with this song.

The song talks about friendship and being with your friends even on the bad moments, and I think that is what made this song so famous until today, being probably one of the most covered Beatles’ song. Even though this is a Beatles song, you probably know the cover made by Joe Cocker in 1969 that was the theme song of the tv show “The Wonder Years”.

 

12- Something

Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UelDrZ1aFeY

Main Composer: George Harrison

Album: Abbey Road

“Something” is definitely one of George Harrison’s best work, and one of the most memorable love songs of all time. It is such a simple and beautiful song, that George thought that he was accidentally plagiarizing someone. “I just put it on ice for six months because I thought, ‘That’s too easy!’” Harrison said in a interview for the Rolling Stones. After all it was a original Beatles song which ended up on the Beatles’ famous Album, Abbey Road.

When George brought it to the other Beatles, they just loved it.  “It took my breath away,” The Beatles’ producer George Martin said, “Mainly because I never thought that George could do it. It was tough for him because he didn’t have any springboard against which he could work, like the other two did. And so he was a loner.” In fact, when he showed it to the other Beatles, they liked it so much that they worked on it for several months to make it perfect. And today we can say that they really managed to do something…

 

11- She Loves You

Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nGbWU8S3vzs

Main Composer: John Lennon and Paul McCartney

Album: *It was just released as a single*

“She Loves You” was the spark of Beatlemania, it was the first major strike of the band and was 15 weeks straight as number one spot song.  “She Loves You” is about a man telling his friend that although he think he lost his love, she still loves him, and that he should be glad, and go back with her.

Paul McCartney and John Lennon started writing this song in a tour van, nd finished it at McCartney’s house in Liverpool, right after they finished writing what would be their first major success, they played t to McCartney’s father, who really liked it, but had some suggestions about the lyrics. “He listens to the whole song and says ‘it is very nice song, but there is enough of this Americanisms around, can’t you sing ‘she loves you yes, yes, yes?’’ We did not follow his advice, if we did, who knows what could have happened” McCartney said during a interview to James Corden.

“She Loves You” is on of those songs that is going to last or a very long time because of its catchy chorus and all the vibe around it.

 

10- Help!

Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2Q_ZzBGPdqE

Main Composer: John Lennon

Album: Help!

“Help!” is ne the most classic Beatle song from their fifth album that carries the same name as the song, which was the soundtrack of their second movie that carries the same name as the song and the album.

Help was written by John Lennon at his home in Weybridge, and although the song has a happy vibe and rhythm, the song is actually a really cry out for help from Lennon. Lennon was exhausted from the Beatles routine, and the song was just him telling the world and himself that he was not prepared for it, and that he kind of  missed the calm and ordinary life he had. “ I was actually crying out for help,” Lennon said in the book “All We Are Saying” by David Sheff. “Most people think it’s just a fast rock ‘n’ roll song. I didn’t realise it at the time; I just wrote the song because I was commissioned to write it for the movie. But later, I knew I really was crying out for help. So it was my fat Elvis period.”

“Help!” is one of the Beatles’ major success, and is also one of those songs that has been passed through generations, and even people that don’t know the Beatles, might know this famous song.

 

9- All You Need Is Love

Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1A8sOOKianA

Main Composer: John Lennon

Album: Magical Mystery Tour

When the Beatles were invited to represent Britain in the Our World TV program, a two-hour show of international performers that would be broadcast live in 25 countries, John Lennon decided to write a new song specially for that occasion, a song that would spread a beautiful and meaningful message to the whole world, and that is where “All You Need Is Love” comes to play.

The song curiously starts with the French anthem, which is a big question mark to many people who hear the song, but it is actually a big joke. Since the 25 countries would be part of the transmission, they started the song with the French national anthem, so people watching the transmission would think that some French band would start playing, and out of the blue in comes the Beatles with their new song no one had ever heard before, it was a clear example of the famous Beatles’ humor.

The song was at number one in the single chart, where it remained for four weeks. And the song has names such as Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Marianne Faithfull, Jane Asher, Mike McCartney, Pattie Harrison, Eric Clapton, and many other very famous characters singing backing vocals in the song.

 

8- Blackbird

Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Man4Xw8Xypo

Main Composer: Paul McCartney

Album: The Beatles (The White Album)

“Blackbird” is performed by Paul McCartney and him only, the song even as simple as can be, having only an acoustic guitar and McCartney’s voice, (and a blackbird on the background) is probably one of the most beautiful and encouraging lyrics of all Beatles songs.

In England, bird can also be used to refer to a girl, so the song is really about a black girl. In 1968 McCartney heard about the struggles over civil rights in the United States, so he decided to write a song to tell those who were being in a hard situation at that time that someday things would get better. “Those were the days of the civil rights movement, which all of us cared passionately about,” McCartney said in his biography “Many Years From Now” by Barry Miles. “So this was really a song from me to a black woman, experiencing these problems in the States: ‘Let me encourage you to keep trying, to keep your faith, there is hope.'”

“Blackbird is a very inspiring song, a song that people who are going through a though time listen to in a form of inspiring them because of lines such as “Blackbird singing in the dead of night, take these broken wings and learn to fly. All your life, you were only waiting for this moment to arise.” this song is a great motivator to people to try to get out of a hard situation or period in life.

 

7- Let It Be

Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QDYfEBY9NM4

Main Composer: Paul McCartney

Album: Let It Be

“When I find myself in times of trouble, Mother Mary comes to me. Speaking words of wisdom, let it be.” Although this may sound like a gospel song, it very surprisingly is not. The song is actually about Mary McCartney, Paul McCartney’s mother. McCartney had the idea for the song of a dream he had, where his mother, who died years before, came to him and told him that “everything is going to be okay. Just let it be.”

This is another song that is perfect for those who are going through a hard time because the song states that the bad times will pass, you just need to let it be, just live your life the way it should be lived, and the bad times will go away.

The song “Let It Be” is probably the last major success the Beatles had before they broke up. The song reached number two in the charts. It got really famous all around the world as well, charting at number one in the United States, Australia, Italy, Norway and Switzerland.

 

6- In My Life

Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YBcdt6DsLQA

Main Composers: John Lennon

Album: Rubber Soul

Having, again, one of the most Beautiful lyrics of all Beatles songs, “In My Life” is a great example of the Beatles’ shift from “hard rock” songs, to all kings of songs in general. Rubber Soul is probably the album that divides the early Beatles, from the late Beatles, having a little of each “era”.

“In my Life” is about the past, and people, things, and places that have passed by, and even though it is inevitable to stop and think about it, living the present is the best. The song can also be a love song because the song describes the past but assures that the present lover is the most important in our lives.

The song was written by John Lennon and Just like Penny Lane and Let it be, it is about a nostalgic point of view of Liverpool. “I had a complete set of lyrics after struggling with a journalistic vision of a trip from home to downtown on a bus naming every sight. It became In My Life, which is a remembrance of friends and lovers of the past. Paul helped with the middle eight musically.” Lennon said in the book “All We are Saying” by David Sheff.  

When listening to this song, it is inevitable to take a trip to your past and thinking about all the places you’ve been and people that were a part of your life, which is the beauty of this song, people can easily connect to the lyrics and can have different responses and feelings towards it.

 

5- Here Comes the Sun

Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xUNqsfFUwhY

Main Composer: George Harrison

Album: Abbey Road

Being one of the happiest Beatles’ songs, “Here Comes the Sun” is probably George Harrison best work. The whole vibe around the song is so happy and contagious that it is constantly used in movies during happy moments, it was used in movies such as “The Bee Movie” and “The Parent Trap”.

Harrison wrote this song at his friend’s, Eric Clapton’s house, during a day he decided to take off, away from all the craziness that was to be a Beatles. “It seems as if winter in England goes on forever; by the time spring comes you really deserve it,” Harrison said in the documentary “Anthology”. “So one day I decided I was going to sag off Apple and I went over to Eric Clapton’s house. The relief of not having to go and see all those dopey accountants was wonderful, and I walked around the garden with one of Eric’s acoustic guitars and wrote Here Comes The Sun.”

The song is about the sun finally coming out after a “long, cold, lonely winter” which can easily be understood as a metaphor about life finally getting better after a tough period, and can also be understood in many other ways depending on the listener.

 

4- Strawberry Fields Forever

Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HtUH9z_Oey8

Main Composer: John Lennon

Album: Magical Mystery Tour

One of the best psychedelic Beatles’ songs , “Strawberry Fields Forever” is based on a orphanage named “Strawberry Field” located near to the house where John Lennon grew up. The song is about Lennon’s hard time on connecting with other people since he was a child. “I was hip in kindergarten,” Lennon said in the book “All We Are Saying” by David Sheff.”I was different all my life. The second verse goes, ‘No one I think is in my tree.’ Well, I was too shy and self-doubting. Nobody seems to be as hip as me is what I was saying. Therefore, I must be crazy or a genius.  ‘I mean it must be high or low,’ the next line. There was something wrong with me, I thought, because I seemed to see things other people didn’t see.”

This was probably one of the hardests songs to record, since the technology in 1966 was not that advanced, and it was way harder to edit music at that time, however, even with all the obstacles, George Martin, the Beatles’ producer and often called “the fifth Beatle”, somehow managed to give the song a very surrealistic tone, that was hardly ever seen before in music history.  

 

3- Yesterday

Song:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fCV9oqtwyVA

Main Composer: Paul McCartney

Album: Help!

The most covered song of all time according to the Guinness Book of Records, “Yesterday” was probably the easiest song Paul McCartney had ever wrote, since it was all made by his subconscious. McCartney dreamed the tune, and when he woke up, he thought that he dreamed about an existing song because it would be really odd that he dreamed a whole new song.  I woke up one morning with a tune in my head and I thought, ‘Hey, I don’t know this tune – or do I?’ It was like a jazz melody,” McCartney said in the documentary “Anthology”. “My dad used to know a lot of old jazz tunes; I thought maybe I’d just remembered it from the past. I went to the piano and found the chords to it, made sure I remembered it and then hawked it round to all my friends, asking what it was: ‘Do you know this? It’s a good little tune, but I couldn’t have written it because I dreamt it.’” As it turns out it was indeed his creation, or his head’s creation.

At first, he named the song “Scrambled Eggs” and the first line went “Scrambled eggs. Oh my baby how I love your legs.” Until one day he decided to make it a real song with a meaningful lyrics, so in June 1965, about one year after he wrote the lyrics of “Scrambled Eggs”, he got an acoustic guitar, and renamed the song to “Yesterday” and wrote one of the most beautiful songs of all time.

 

2- A day In the Life

Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=usNsCeOV4GM

Main Composers: John Lennon and Paul McCartney

Album: Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band

The last song of what many consider to be the greatest Album of all time, “A Day In the Life” is a masterpiece that shows the Beatles’ peak of creativity, and their will of always innovate, and make things people had never seen before, and that is the case of “A Day In the Life”.

The song is mostly about a series of non-related events, such as a millionaire dying in a car crash, and four thousand potholes in the streets of Blackburn, Lancashire.  “I was reading the paper one day and noticed two stories,” Lennon said in the book “All We Are Saying” by David Sheff. “One was about the Guinness heir who killed himself in a car. That was the main headline story. He died in London in a car crash. On the next page was a story about four thousand potholes in the streets of Blackburn, Lancashire, that needed to be filled. Paul’s contribution was the beautiful little lick in the song, ‘I’d love to turn you on,’ that he’d had floating around in his head and couldn’t use. I thought it was a good piece of work.”

This song is revolutionary in the music industry, nothing like this had ever been seen before, from the lyrics to the production process, “A Day In the Life” truly shows why the Beatles were the best band of all time. The song counts with the four Beatles, and a whole orchestra  that fills the sections after the line “I’d love to turn you on”, but they were struggling on what they would play after that line, so Lennon made a very simple request, to make it sound like the end of the world.

The Beatles also felt that there was something missing after the orchestra, so that is when Paul McCartney’s section, “Woke up, fell out of bed” comes to play. McCartney’s contribution to the song is just a description of a day in the life, a normal day in his life before the fame in Liverpool.

The song was released in June 1st, 1967, which was still a very conservative time, which led the song to be banned in the BBC because of the line “I’d love to turn you on” which was very inappropriate at that time. “We [McCartney and Lennon] got in what was going to lead to the middle. We looked at each other, and knew we were being edgy when we said ‘I’d love to turn you on’. So we kind of knew this would have an effect,” McCartney said in an interview for “GQ”.

Even with all the controversies, the song still was a major success, and today, people can truly see it as a piece of art, and one of the best songs of all time.

 

1- Hey Jude

Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A_MjCqQoLLA

Main Composer: Paul McCartney

Album: *It was just released as a single*

“Hey Jude” takes the first place in this list as not only the best Beatles song, but in my opinion, the greatest song of all time. Even though “Hey Jude” doesn’t have an amazing story of how it was produced like “A Day In the Life”, “I’m Only Sleeping” or “Strawberry Fields Forever”, “Hey Jude” is the best song because of its symbolism, what it represents in the Beatles’ and musical history.

Hey Jude was written by Paul McCartney to comfort John Lennon’s son, Julian Lennon, when Lennon and his wife, Cynthia, were going through a divorce in 1968. He had the idea of the song when driving down to Lennon’s house, and thinking about what he would say to comfort Julian. “I thought, as a friend of the family, I would motor out to Weybridge and tell them that everything was all right: to try and cheer them up, basically, and see how they were,” McCartney said in the documentary Anthology. “I had about an hour’s drive. I would always turn the radio off and try and make up songs, just in case… I started singing: ‘Hey Jules – don’t make it bad, take a sad song, and make it better…’ It was optimistic, a hopeful message for Julian: ‘Come on, man, your parents got divorced. I know you’re not happy, but you’ll be OK.’”

“Hey Jude” was inspired by Julian Lennon, however, the song doesn’t apply to him only, actually, it is quite the opposite, the song’s power of making people connect to it is so strong, that John Lennon thought it was a song about him the first time he heard it. “I always heard it as a song to me.” Lennon said in the book “All We Are Saying” by David Sheff. “If you think about it… Yoko’s just come into the picture. He’s saying, ‘Hey, Jude – hey, John.’ I know I’m sounding like one of those fans who reads things into it, but you can hear it as a song to me. The words ‘go out and get her’. subconsciously he was saying, Go ahead, leave me.” Lennon is not the only one who felt connected to the song, “Hey Jude” is such a broad and beautiful song about lifting your head and go through with your problems, that basically everyone who hears it, can relate to the lyrics.

The song’s success was immediate, even being a seven minutes-long song, “Hey Jude” rose to the number one spot, where it remained for the next nine weeks, being the longest run achieved by any Beatles single. The single sold five million copies in six months. Altogether it spent 19 weeks in the charts.

“Hey Jude” also has one of the best promotional films, (or video-clip) of that time. When the song comes to its end, many people come in and start singing along “Nah Nah Nah Nah, Hey Jude” People of all kinds, all colors, all shapes, and all ages, which may sound kind of trivial, however, in 1968 it was not commun at all, so the message that the Beatles passed with the promotional film is not just of a great song, it is also a beautiful show of inclusiveness, which is just a little something that makes this song the greatest of all time.

And those are some of the reasons that make “Hey Jude”, a seven minute-long ballad, the greatest song of all time, “Hey Jude” is a song that will go on for many generations, and people will always gather together and sing the words “Nah nah nah, hey Jude”. And I believe that world peace is just going to be established when everyone is holding their hands and singing “Hey Jude”.

 

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