Tuesday, October 19, 2010

For ABC WEDNESDAY

“N” is for “Night”
As in “A Hard Day’s.” :-)
In the field of pop music, an interesting phenomenon has been the development, starting half a century or so ago, of garage bands, small groups of young musical folks, some talented, some not so much – all working away, composing, rehearsing, driving their neighbors crazy – and all looking for their big break.
Of course there are many such groups that keep forming today. Some may become successful, most will not.

All of which is just my way of getting around to the use of the word “night” for N Day. You see, there was also a cluster of young British musical types back in 1964 that you may have heard of, name of the Beatles.
Paul McCartney tells how one special song came about: “The title was Ringo’s. He would come up with these little malapropisms, things he said that were slightly wrong – the way most folks do – but his would sometimes be wonderful, very lyrical. One day, after we had done a lot of hard work, Ringo said: ‘Phew, it’s been a hard day’s night.’”

This, of course, became the title of their movie, but it also had a remarkable life as a song. John Lennon dashed it off in one night. According to the Associated Press report, “At 8:30 in the morning, there were John and Paul with guitars at the ready and all the lyrics scribbled on match-book covers.” It sounds as though they just tossed the recording off effortlessly, but actually there were nine takes before they got it the way they wanted it.
America first saw the single of “A Hard Day’s Night” on sale in July of 1964; five days later it was way up on the charts. Nobody before the Beatles had ever held the number one position in both the United Kingdom and the United States at the same time.
In America they sold a million copies of the song in five weeks.
I remember being in France later and learned that the group was almost as successful there as anywhere else. The problem was, the average French person had a problem with the pronunciation of the name. They called them “les beTULLSS.” It took a while to figure out just who they were talking about. :-)

Music of the Beatles moved from catchy love songs in the early period to profound ballads and social commentary. It’s been decades since John Lennon was killed, decades since the group broke up, but for many the Beatles somehow manage to stay very much alive.

24 comments:

Jedediah said...

Oh, instant earworm. "Lyrics scribbled on matchbooks" - I love that :)
I just walked past the Beatles Platz a few days ago - like all things on the Reeperbahn, it looks a lot better at night.

Sylvia K said...

I love the song and the Beatles from way back then! Fun memories for the day and a great post for the day! Thanks for memories!

Sylvia

Nanka said...

Loved your post and who can ever forget the Beatles? Especially...."It's been a hard day's night!"
Thank you for this post.

photowannabe said...

Thanks for sharing the birth of the legendery song. The Beatles were a few years past my prime teen years but I liked them all the same. Great N post.

RuneE said...

Since I was a teenager when they came along, they are still with me.

LisaF said...

The Beatles will live in infamy because of the culture-changing contributions they made. Wow, they sure look young in that photo! I love your tidbits of nostalgia every week. Thanks.

Roger Owen Green said...

I LOVE the Beatles. Have a Lennon photo in my office, an Imagine photo in my house.

I thought AHDN was when even the critics thought the Beatles were for real, with their first album with no covers, and a strong album at that.

ROG, ABC Wednesday team

Leslie: said...

I remember a group of 4 boys dressing up like the Beatles and performing at one of our school dances. What fun!

Wanda said...

Their songs, and the melodies were just fabulous. I heard an Orchestra play all their songs, and the melodies are so enchanting! Add the lyrics and they are just as fabulous.

EG Wow said...

Great memories for me! Thanks for this post. :)

Mara said...

I was once taken on a trip by a beatlemanic. We went to Liverpool and visited every site they had ever played, been, sneezed in! At the time it was a bit too much, but I have learned to really appreciate their music as well. All thanks to Ian!

Strawberry Jam Anne said...

The unforgettable Beatles - and A Hard Day's Night is also unforgettable,(also Peter Seller's version) though not my personal favourite. I would be hard pressed to say which song is though.

Tumblewords: said...

How well I remember the advent of this group that outlasted the first flush of fame!

Gramma Ann said...

Oh yes, I remember them well.. I remember the Night they first appeared on the Ed Sullivan Show. We were playing cards with friends, and I said I have to go watch the Beatles on the Ed Sullivan Show for a few minutes. They all said" Who?"... They soon learned who The Beatles were. hehe

MorningAJ said...

I was just too young for the Beatles at the time. I remember they appeared at the theatre in town. My sister went to see them but I wasn't allowed. I never really got over it.

Shigune Matsui said...

Heyyyyy, you ever hear of the song Revolution 9? I heard it backwards, and you know those supposed backmasked messages that people supposedly hear from songs? The rumor was that Paul is dead, a VERY popular rumor that states Paul McCartney today is replaced with a look-a-like.

The song Revolution 9 says "Paul is dead." at one point. But here's the thing, The rumor of something happening is untrue. Paul is still alive.

Creepy, huh? Here's mine http://thelunaticsdiary.blogspot.com/2010/10/neurotoxic-demon.html

Joy said...

Their songs live on, as good as when they were written.
I remember Peter Sellers doing a spoken Hard Days Night as a Shakespearean soliloquy, funny.

OJ Gonzalez-Cazares said...

Paul used to visit a pizza joint near my home in Tucson, AZ where he had a horse ranch with Linda. They have signed pics and eveything! thanks for the musical history trip and the nice use of the "N"... (so many bad words, so many options)

Hildred and Charles said...

I was the wrong generation for the Beatles, - too busy being a mum - but have learned to appreciate and love their music since.

Berowne said...

My thanks for some friendly, generous comments to: Hildred & Charles, OJ Gonzalez, Joy, Shigune, Gramma Ann, Tumblewords, Leslie, Roger O G, Strawberry Jam Anne, Morning AJ, Mara and EG Wow.

Pat said...

So glad to hear Ringo was responsible for that brilliant title. He and George were my favourites.

Paul C said...

A wonderful retrospective for a famous Beatles tune. Then there is Elie Wiesel's Night....

Jingle said...

entertaining n post.

helenmac said...

Berowne, your blog documents why they are such a long-lived phenomenon. My list of Beatles favorites is too long to detail here! And I was in my twenties when they appeared on the scene.....
Musical genius is the term that best describes them.
HelenMac, ABC Team

 
Blog designed by Blogger Boutique using Christy Skagg's "A Little Bit of That" kit.