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John's Writing Style Change For Sgt Pepper?
28 May 2017
5.52am
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QuarryMan
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So as I'm sure you're all aware, John and Paul have/had very different writing styles. Most of John's songs such as Nowhere Man , Mother or Watching The Wheels are all very introspective whereas Paul songs like Eleanor Rigby or Ob La Di Ob La Da are very much short stories in song form.
Yet on Sgt Pepper John's writing does a complete U-turn . Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds has all that abstract imagery, Being For The Benefit Of Mr Kite is based on a Victorian circus poster and A Day In The Life is about a friend of John's named Tara Browne who died in a car crash, though the lyrics are far more abstract than that.

What are your thoughts on this? Anybody know why John's writing changed so much in this album when a year later he was back writing songs like I'm So Tired ?

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28 May 2017
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Dark Overlord
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John's lyrics were very weak on Sgt. Pepper and Magical Mystery Tour when compared to his other lyrics. This is also the same case with George's guitar playing on these 2 albums, but let's save that for another time.

It could be because of where his 1967 lyrics were coming from, Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds is based off a painting his 4 year old son drew, Being For The Benefit Of Mr. Kite is based off a circus poster, Good Morning Good Morning is based off a Corn Flakes commercial, I Am The Walrus is based off an acid trip and the book Alice In Wonderland, and Baby You're A Rich Man is based off a concert.

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28 May 2017
2.04pm
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meanmistermustard
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'Walrus' and 'Lucy' are great lyrics and you try and get a good a lyric from a circus poster or newspaper. I think those lyrics are fantastic. 

The issue with John was that he was bored senseless stuck in the middle of the countryside trying to be a husband and father whilst constantly tripping on drugs. Less than a year later he was infatuated with Yoko and then in a relationship with her, coming back to life.

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28 May 2017
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Shamrock Womlbs
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QuarryMan said
What are your thoughts on this? Anybody know why John's writing changed so much in this album when a year later he was back writing songs like I'm So Tired ?  

Because of the drug of the moment?

"I Need You by George Harrison"

28 May 2017
8.48pm
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Old brown shoe
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Good topic this...

There is certainly no doubt that John's lyrical style changed during this period and I think we all agree that his use of LSD undoubtedly played a major role. His songs became more colourful and he suddenly seemed to revel in telling stories utilising his love for word distortion (and indeed invention), something he learned as a young boy from trawling through stories such as Alice in wonderland etc...

Perhaps also the nature of both the Sgt Peppers and mystery tour albums necessitated a more story telling approach to the lyrics, as both were essentially concept albums and Lennon's soul searching approach may not have fitted well. Dylan had earlier freed him from the conventions of pop music and eventually more depth to his lyrics emerged as a result.  

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29 May 2017
4.16am
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QuarryMan
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Dark Overlord said
John's lyrics were very weak on Sgt. Pepper and Magical Mystery Tour when compared to his other lyrics. This is also the same case with George's guitar playing on these 2 albums, but let's save that for another time.

It could be because of where his 1967 lyrics were coming from, Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds is based off a painting his 4 year old son drew, Being For The Benefit Of Mr. Kite is based off a circus poster, Good Morning Good Morning is based off a Corn Flakes commercial, I Am The Walrus is based off an acid trip and the book Alice In Wonderland, and Baby You're A Rich Man is based off a concert.  

I would have to agree with you on George's playing. I think he was in his most Indian inspired phase at this time and therefore wasn't playing a lot of guitar at all. But I think the lyrics on Lucy, Kite and Walrus are all fantastic, though I'm not too fond of Good Morning Good Morning . And on Mystery Tour, are you ignoring Strawberry Fields Forever ? That's a lyrical masterpiece.

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29 May 2017
8.26am
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Dark Overlord
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Don't get me wrong, Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds , Being For The Benefit Of Mr. Kite, and I Am The Walrus all have great lyrics, I'm just saying that they come from cheap sources. As for Good Morning Good Morning , I like it more so because of the good use of horns in a rock song, as well as the solo and the fact that John used his Fender instead of the Epiphone he normally used. Also, I didn't mention A Day In The Life , Strawberry Fields Forever , and All You Need Is Love because the sources they came from were good sources, not a cereal commercial or a poster or an acid trip or anything stupid like that.

As for George's playing, it's a good thing he returned his focus to lead guitar playing for The Beatles. On Sgt. Pepper 's Lonely Hearts Club Band and Magical Mystery Tour he only has 3 solos, Fixing A Hole , Sgt. Pepper 's Lonely Hearts Club Band (Reprise), and All You Need Is Love .

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29 May 2017
9.47am
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sir walter raleigh
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The source of inspiration for pretty much the entire album was acid, but each specific song has a reason behind it. They took acid and wrote songs, but didn't really write very many songs about acid. 

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31 May 2017
10.35am
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Duke_of_Kirkcaldy
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It's been well-documented that the Sgt. Pepper era was pretty much when John's unhappy personal life truly started coming to the fore. I suppose it can be traced to the fact that all of the inspiration for his contributions to the album came from outside sources: a couple of newspaper headlines ("A Day In The Life "), a breakfast cereal commercial ("Good Morning, Good Morning"), a vintage circus poster ("Being for the Benefit of Mr. Kite!"), and a drawing done by his son ("Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds "). And I'm still puzzled by his statement that the group only had a couple of weeks to write the songs for the album. I mean, they spent 4-5 months recording it.  ahdn_paul_02 Surely he could've come up with another song or two if pressed.

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31 May 2017
11.29am
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sir walter raleigh
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The songs definitely are a product of taking LSD. It probably caused him to develop this weird fascination with certain things around him. It could be anything, the design on the carpet, a poster on his wall... anything. You never know what is going to strike you when you take it. 

Definetly a change from Rubber Soul where he was extremely personal and reflective. And while some (including George) say LSD is "life changing" and caused extreme personal realizations, Sgt. Pepper is John's least philosophical since before he started writing deeper songs. 

He probably thought the ambiguity and surrealism of Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds , Mr. Kite an Good Morning Good Morning was cool, and it happened to fit in perfectly with the rest of the album. 

With that being said, SFF is extremely psychedelic, but reflective and personal, so perhaps his songwriting for the album was totally out there, but during the period he was still cranking out the solid songs with emotion and meaning.

It was a period of experimentation which turned out quite well wouldn't you say?

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1 June 2017
9.39am
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Duke_of_Kirkcaldy
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Of course, this is also the period where Paul more or less started taking over the group's de facto leader role from John -- almost certainly at least partially due to John's own domestic/personal turmoil... though also undoubtedly because Paul started to become the more prolific songwriter at this point.

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