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Strongest Beatle per album
30 January 2014
11.56pm
Necko
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Paul during White Album era, for sure…

I'm Necko.  I'm like Ringo except I wear necklaces.
31 January 2014
1.02am
TheOneBeatleManiac
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Necko said

Paul during White Album era, for sure…

a-hard-days-night-ringo-8 LOL.
a-hard-days-night-john-6a-hard-days-night-paul-8a-hard-days-night-george-9a-hard-days-night-ringo-10brian-epstein

In My Life, I Love You More.
9 February 2014
5.07pm
xskelterhelterx
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RS- John

Revolver- Paul/John- John contributed IOS, SSSS, TNK.  Paul- ER, HTAE, etc.

Pepper- Paul.  John had some really good songs on this though.

WA- John/Paul.  I'd give the slight edge to John I guess.

Abbey Road- Paul.  George was close.  But Paul took over after Epstein died.

9 February 2014
9.35pm
InTheEnd
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Please Please Me: Paul, but only just.  If John didn't have that nasty cold he would have taken it.

With The Beatles: John

A Hard Day's Night: John, but again this is close.  All of Paul's songs on this album are classics.

Beatles For Sale: John, again only just.  "I Don't Want To Spoil The Party" is one of his best songs and certainly one of their most underrated.

Help!: John, though this might be the closest between John and Paul

Rubber Soul: Paul, although "In My Life" almost wins it for John here.  I've always thought "Girl" was a tad overrated (Sorry!) and I've never cared for "Run For Your Life"

Revolver: Paul's talent explodes on this record.  John's songs are all great but the psychedelic rockers start to sound a tad too similar after a while.  Every one of Paul's contributions are absolutely incredible.  George also really shines on this record.  What an album.

Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band: Paul wins this one going away, although I do love "Within You Without You".

Magical Mystery Tour (Capitol version): The EP songs are good but I wouldn't consider any of them classics, so John edges out Paul thanks to "All You Need Is Love"

The Beatles: I love this album so this is the most difficult for me.  Really, really close between John, Paul and George, but I have to give it to John.  George contributes two of his all-time best songs (I said in another thread that "Long, Long, Long" is my absolute favorite song and I realize I'm in the minority on that!) but all of John's except for "Bungalow Bill" and "Yer Blues" are absolute top notch.  "Happiness Is A Warm Gun" might be my favorite Lennon song.

Yellow Submarine: George edges out John simply because of George's two songs to John's one (counting only previously unreleased songs).  I get the feeling that George's two other 1967 contributions are either loved or hated by the fans, but I love them both.

Let It Be: Paul was the only one interested in this project and it shows.

Abbey Road: George.  Paul has the medley(most of it, anyway) and John's songs are great, but George's two songs here might be the best two he ever wrote.  Ringo steps up with one of his best, too.  A wonderful end to the best band ever.

How could I ever have lost you when I loved you?

9 February 2014
9.39pm
IveJustSeenAFaceo
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TheOneBeatleManiac said
(SNIP
With The Beatles: John again (though Paul has All My Loving & Till There Was You here, and those are classics).

A Hard Day's Night: Obviously John (probably the album with more John than anybody, though Paul is not behind with all his three leads - All My Loving, Can't Buy Me Love, Things We Said Today).
(SNIP)

You appear to have listed this twice. Once correctly, once incorrectly. Just letting you know.

(This signature brought to you by Winter. Coming for an abnormally long amount of time.)
26 February 2014
5.49pm
DayInTheLife
Strawberry Fields
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This is quite tough but I guess this is it:

Please Please Me – John

WTB – John (but All My Loving rules)

AHDN – John (but Things We Said Today and And I Love Her are two of my fav songs)

BFS – John (I'm A Loser is just awesome!)

Help – John (Paul comes closer with Yerterday and I've Just Seen A Face)

Rubber Soul – John's songs in this album are some of the best songs that he ever wrote (In My Life and Nowhere Man are brilliant!)

Revolver – Paul (Eleanor Rigby is amazing and Here, There and Everywhere is such a touching and charming song) but Tomorrow Never Knows is the best song of the album for me.

Sgt. Peppers – Paul no doubt.

MMT – Tie between John and Paul.

White – John and George have the best songs in general. (McCa is kind of "meh" with songs like Martha or I Will)

YS- George.

Let It Be – Paul.

Abbey Road – Paul (the medley man! just frekin' awesome!) but George songs are classics!

"If there's a thing such as genius. I am one. And if there isn't, I don't care." - John Lennon

 

27 February 2014
3.49pm
MoonDogVic
Miami, FL US
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Please Please Me – John (Please Please Me)

With The Beatles – John (It Won't Be Long)

Hard Day's Night – John (Hard Day's Night)

Beatles For Sale – John (No Reply)

Help – John (Help)

Rubber Soul – Paul (Baby You Can Drive My Car)

Revolver – Paul (Eleanor Rigby)

Sgt. Pepper's – John (A Day In The Life) **

Magical Mystery Tour – John (Strawberry Fields)

White Album – John (Dear Prudence)

Yellow Submarine – John (All Your Need if Love)

Abbey Road – George (Something)

Let it Be – Paul (Long and Winding Road)

( ) = Standout Tracks

** Best Album

 

 

Cavernite

28 February 2014
6.17am
PeterWeatherby
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It's quite characteristic of the "John" personality type to go full-on guns blazing into some new venture, only to lose interest after a while and become quite apathetic. John did this at almost every turn in his life – he was besotted with Cynthia (as his letters from Hamburg show) but eventually lost interest, and then Yoko suddenly became the answer to everything; he thought the Maharishi could slip him "the answer," and then just as quickly turned venomous towards the guru; he was prepared to promote Primal Scream to the ends of the earth when he first discovered it, then grew tired of it.

So also, I think, with The Beatles. It's everything he ever wanted, at first, and he went after it 100%. Then he got bored, and restless, and by the end he wanted "a divorce." I think his contributions to each album tell that story in spades.

On Please Please Me, he was a dominant force. Hell, he single-handedly wrote the chart-topping single of the same name that put The Beatles on the map. Paul's major contribution was "I Saw Her Standing There," which is nothing to sneeze at, but if we're pitting songs like "There's A Place" or "Ask Me Why" against something like "P.S. I Love You," John wins this contest handily.

I'd give With the Beatles to John as well. He and Paul went pretty well tit-for-tat in terms of original material (I'll see your "All My Loving" and raise you a "It Won't Be Long"), but there's just so much John energy on this album – the emotion he invests in "Postman" or "You Really Got A Hold On Me."

With A Hard Day's Night, I think John hit his productive peak. It's not even close – something like ten songs, to McCartney's three? After this, I think John starts getting tired of the whole thing, and gradually begins to drop off.

They were all so busy that practically no one had time to write original material for Beatles For Sale, and the stuff they did write is, in my book, pretty much a wash. Either John and Paul wrote stuff together (like "Eight Days A Week"), or their individual contributions aren't really all that strong (e.g., "What You're Doing" and "Baby's In Black").

As they moved into Help!, I think John started getting more selective. He was less concerned about cranking out another hit song, and more interested in writing about his own life, experiences, feelings, etc. This is where I think John's stuff becomes far more personal (and therefore polarizing), and Paul starts to crank out the commercial polish. With songs like "I've Just Seen A Face" and "Yesterday," Paul starts to step into the hit-maker role a bit more, even if John's "Help!" and "You've Got To Hide Your Love Away" are solid to the core.

Rubber Soul is also something of a wash. John nailed it with stuff like "Nowhere Man" and "Girl," but Paul was keeping pace nicely with things like "You Won't See Me," "Drive My Car," and "I'm Looking Through You." John continues moving inward, Paul continues shining up the marquee.

Revolver is where John really starts to lose a few steps. I think this is where his boredom with the Beatles really starts to show up. He's writing songs about being lazy, or songs that he would later call "a throwaway" (like "And Your Bird Can Sing"). He throws some real effort into "Tomorrow Never Knows," but again, it's because he'd found something interesting that got him excited. Otherwise, his contributions continued to be very selective, while Paul flexed his musical muscles and knocked out some major hits in several different musical genres – "Eleanor Rigby," "Got To Get You Into My Life," "Yellow Submarine," "Here, There, and Everywhere," and "Good Day Sunshine" all go to very different places musically, but they're all breathtaking.

We all know Sgt. Pepper was Paul's baby, start to finish. John more-or-less phones it in for most of this album – I enjoy "Mr. Kite" as much as anyone, but let's face it, he wrote it straight off a circus poster. He was starting to lose more and more time on endless drug trips, sleeping in, and lounging around the house. "Good Morning" came from a television commercial. He seems to have found some inspiration in "Lucy," but that's about as far as he got. Yes, "Day in the Life" is amazing, but that's also a Len-Mac collaboration, so you can't really credit that one to either of them.

After that, John and Paul's paths grow increasingly further apart. Magical Mystery Tour, The White Album, and so on, are indicators of what their future solo careers will look like. John will write songs that mean something to him, his output will lag behind Paul's, and the results will be mixed, because songs that are personally interesting can be very polarizing. Paul will increase his output, and as a result he will write an incredible number of fantastic stinkers, as well as an unbelievable number of hits. To this day, I will listen to songs like "How?", "Watching the Wheels," or "Crippled Inside," and think that Paul never came close to that level of insight; and at the same time, when I listen to a greatest hits collection, I end up skipping far more of John's songs than I do Paul's.

So I think they split the results. John was stronger at the start, and gradually backed away out of lack of interest while Paul moved to the forefront. One thing is certain, though: George wins Abbey Road, hands down.

Not a bit like Cagney.
28 February 2014
2.15pm
fabfouremily
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Brilliant post! You've made me think properly about the point you've raised – that John's gradual disinterest is reflected in his work. I've never really thought much about that before.
One thing though, I don't see the problem with where John got his inspiration from to write For The Benefit…. It's a good song. He was inspired to write A Day In The Life from a paper, and yet few would call this anything but a masterpiece. So I don't think that really says anything at all about his losing interest in writing, and therefore his quality and quantity of songs for the group.

''We're just knocked out. We heard about the sell out. You gotta get an album out, you owe it to the people. We're so happy we can hardly count.''

28 February 2014
2.39pm
PeterWeatherby
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fabfouremily said

One thing though, I don't see the problem with where John got his inspiration from to write For The Benefit…. It's a good song.

Sure, it's a good song, and that's a testament to John's talent as a musician. I just meant that it strikes me as something of a half-assed effort in terms of songwriting, you know, he needed to contribute some music for this project that Paul was all fired up about, so … "Here, I have a poster, I'll just take a bunch of lines straight from there."

If I remember the story correctly, he couldn't even be troubled to get off the couch, so he squinted at the poster across the room and tried to copy what words he could see. :)

Not a bit like Cagney.
7 March 2014
5.02am
Into the Sky with Diamonds
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@PeterWeatherby 

Great analysis! (Love "I'll see your "All My Loving" and raise you a "It Won't Be Long").

I see where you're coming from, but I don't think it's that straightforward. Yes, by all accounts Lennon had a tendency to get wound up about something and then drop it. Yet, I don't think you can put the Beatles in that category. He'd been in the band 10 years or so before he decided to go in another direction and had achieved all the fame he could have ever imagined. So the Beatles were hardly a passing fancy. As he would say himself, Lennon was naturally lazy, and once he achieved fame, his laziness got the better of him (as did the drugs). So yes, by the time Pepper came around he was too drugged or too lazy to expend huge amounts of time to the band (or his wife or his son). Copying lyrics point blank from a poster fit right in. And what about the lyrics to "Good Morning, Good Morning" ("I've got nothing to say…")? Seems to me he was bored with life in general, no more so the Beatles than anything else.

But yes, I agree that Lennon in some ways was running out of steam after Rubber Soul, though ironically many of his greatest songs were written after that album. I attribute that happy circumstance to the artistically fruitful combination of compositional genius, drugs, terrific band mates + a terrific producer.

 

"Into the Sky with Diamonds" (the Beatles and the Race to the Moon – a history)
7 March 2014
7.17am
TheOneBeatleManiac
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IveJustSeenAFaceo said

A Hard Day's Night: Obviously John (probably the album with more John than anybody, though Paul is not behind with all his three leads - All My Loving, Can't Buy Me Love, Things We Said Today).
(SNIP)

You appear to have listed this twice. Once correctly, once incorrectly. Just letting you know.

Yeah, thanks for notifying me. I meant to wrote And I Love Her, but I think I was still thinking in With The Beatles when writing.

The following people thank TheOneBeatleManiac for this post:

IveJustSeenAFaceo
In My Life, I Love You More.
7 March 2014
12.52pm
OneCoolCat
The Cavern Club
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Please Please Me: Paul 
With The Beatles: John
A Hard Day's Night: John
Beatles For Sale: John
Help: John
Rubber Soul: Paul
Revolver: Paul
Sgt. Pepper's: Paul
Magical Mystery Tour: Paul
The Beatles: John
Yellow Submarine: George
Abbey Road: Paul
Let It Be: Paul

 

 

 

 

 

 

10 March 2014
5.42pm
PeterWeatherby
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Into the Sky with Diamonds said

I see where you're coming from, but I don't think it's that straightforward. Yes, by all accounts Lennon had a tendency to get wound up about something and then drop it. Yet, I don't think you can put the Beatles in that category. He'd been in the band 10 years or so before he decided to go in another direction and had achieved all the fame he could have ever imagined. So the Beatles were hardly a passing fancy.

Well, but ultimately The Beatles were a "passing fancy" to John – maybe they didn't come and go overnight like a flash in the pan, but ultimately they did go from being John's #1 obsession to being the one thing he wanted to get away from.

I wouldn't say it took 10 years for him to get bored of the whole thing. It just took him that long to find something else that really excited him (Yoko, in this case) and gave him a reason to make a definitive break. The "lazy" factor is an indicator here. The "John" personality isn't necessarily inherently lazy, but they tend to be incredibly lazy when they're not on fire for some new venture. When John was "on fire" for The Beatles, he was anything but lazy, and he broke his back working to get the group into the international spotlight. Heck, even when it was just The Quarrymen, he was highly motivated and worked very hard for a long time to get to that next level.

He recaptured some of the fire when he met Yoko and was suddenly all about new artistic projects and promoting peace.

But anyway, the point is, John's tend to get lazy when they get bored and no longer believe in the importance of the work they're doing, so when I see that John was starting to do a lot more lounging around the house during the Pepper project, for me that's an indicator that he was getting quite bored with The Beatle project. Understandably so, too, because he'd accomplished what he wanted to accomplish: unheard-of fame and fortune. And it still didn't make him happy, so, "on to the next thing."

Here's an interesting theory/speculation to mull over: if there hadn't been a "Paul" personality type in the group – the ever-driven, ever-motivated, loves-to-work-his-butt-off type – would The Beatles have even recorded another album after Brian Epstein died? I tend to doubt it. But that's another discussion, I suppose.

Not a bit like Cagney.
20 March 2014
3.57am
Zig
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PeterWeatherby said
It's quite characteristic of the "John" personality type to go full-on guns blazing into some new venture, only to lose interest after a while and become quite apathetic. 

I love reading well written posts. You obviously put a lot of thought into it and you had me on most points, but not about him being apathetic. I may be wrong, but I think his attentions simply went elsewhere – as you said, on to the next thing. To be fair, there are many accounts of him saying he was lazy, tired, always sleeping, etc… Some of it was the sheer boredom of living so far away from the action of London, some of it was from the drugs from late '64 forward, some of it was a combination of both. In the past, I was also convinced he had gotten increasingly lazy – I've even posted that in these very pages. But the more I thought about it… Consider where his energy was directed at different stages.

In the early days, his energy was spent largely trying to write hit pop singles. George Martin has said that even at the point of the second album, they were still thinking in terms of singles – filling an album with pop songs. But, as he mastered this (I agree that A Hard Day's Night was his peak for '63/'64) he got bored. Instead of apathetic, however, I feel he just turned his energy toward writing more meaningful songs. To me, Beatles For Sale is such a fascinating album. Part of it feels like the rush job that it was and the other part shows flashes of John dabbling in the personal ('I'm a Loser' and to a degree, 'I Don't Want To Spoil The Party'. An energy shift, if you will indulge me.

As for '65, I feel he started caring less about quantity and stared to dwell more on quality. The quality I speak of is in terms of meaning – songs that say something besides, "please buy this record". HELP! and Rubber Soul feature Lennon songs that both rock and say something at the same time. 'HELP!', 'Ticket To Ride' and 'The Word' leap to mind. Other songs were deeper, more meaningful – 'You've Got To Hide Your Love Away', 'In My Life' etc…

Now 66 – 68.

PeterWeatherby said

Revolver is where John really starts to lose a few steps. I think this is where his boredom with the Beatles really starts to show up. He's writing songs about being lazy, or songs that he would later call "a throwaway" (like "And Your Bird Can Sing"). 

… Sgt. Pepper … John more-or-less phones it in for most of this album – I enjoy "Mr. Kite" as much as anyone, but let's face it, he wrote it straight off a circus poster. He was starting to lose more and more time on endless drug trips, sleeping in, and lounging around the house. 

One man's apathy is another man's energy shift. OK, so how energetic can you be when you spend a good deal of time in a drug-induced haze? So let's get off the word energy and replace it with focus. Having evolved well past pop writing, his focus seemed to be less on the words and more about sound. While his written words may have "lost a step" in some cases, the sounds he wanted to create leaped ahead. From Revolver forward are some of my absolute favorite John songs. They were not always the most brilliant lyrically but oh-my-friggin'-word, the songs sounded so cool and/or beautiful. You felt something when you heard them. He wanted people to feel as though they were hearing a Tibetan Monk in 'Tomorrow Never Knows'. 'Being for the Benefit of Mr. Kite' was absolutely nicked from a poster. That can be seen by some as lazy/apathetic. But consider this. He just did not care about the words, he wanted to create a feeling. Most of us know the story of how he told George Martin that he wanted to "smell the sawdust" from the circus (paraphrasing) when he heard the song. Who else in 1967 was thinking that way? 'Good Morning, Good Morning' was taken from a TV commercial? You betcha…for about 7 seconds at the beginning and a couple more few-second intervals in between. The rest of the song flows so melodically and tells a story that no cereal maker in their right mind would want associated with their product – would you want your kids thinking about "watching the skirts" while eating their Corn Flakes? I just don't buy into that jazz about how "he stole that song from a commercial". Two of his most iconic songs are 'Strawberry Fields Forever' and 'I Am The Walrus'. Forgive my memory as to which one, but wasn't he very disappointed with one of them because it did not sound the way he heard it in his head? Seriously? That sounds to me like a man who knew what he wanted. The Beatles features songs that tell stories from the trip to India (Dear Prudence, Sexy Sadie, etc…). Just ordinary, dull stories set to some pretty damn cool music. They could have been stories about someone clipping their toenails on the banks of the Ganges and he would have made it sound beautiful. 

(sung to the tune of Sexy Sadie)

Clipped my toenail - where did it Go?

I've seemed to lost it in the sun.

I've seemed to lost it in the suuuuuuuuuu-uuuuuuuuuun

Clipped my toenail – oh where did it go?

After that, the boredom/stifling/whatever-you-want-to-call-it got to the point where he wanted less and less to do with the band and more and more to do with other things – the next things. Wanting to move on is not apathy in my book. 

To the fountain of perpetual mirth, Let it roll for all its worth.

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20 March 2014
5.15am
WhereArtEsteban
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^^^Wasn't the one he thought he messed up "Tomorrow Never Knows"? He said he wanted the chanting

John wins em all in my book save for a tie on Rubber Soul with Paul, Paul wins SPLHCB, George gets YS for "Its All Too Much" being incredible. Let It Be is a tie of all of them
I say Ringo wins Abbey Road for singing the chorus in "Carry That Weight"a-hard-days-night-ringo-15

"P. P. P. P. S- L. P. Winner."

20 March 2014
5.39am
xskelterhelterx
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Paul is my favorite Beatle.   But Lennon was easily the best on Rubber Soul

 

Norwegian Wood, In My Life, Nowhere Man, Girl, etc

 

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