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John Lennon - greatest songwriter of all time?
1 March 2016
5.40pm
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Derek_Francis
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Lennon has made all sorts of songs from radio hits, experimental music, anthemic masterpieces, poetic gems, to songs that were too audacious for the radio to play.  He was beautifully inconsistent and never did the same thing twice.  He not only mastered the formula to being a successful rock artist, but he broke the formula and took lots of risks each time.  Each song is about something different and you can tell his songs apart.  His catologue is very robust.  He has songs that are soft, hard, happy, sad, introspective and perceptive.  Between the great melodies, excellent lyrics, unique instrumentation and a distinct voice, his songs have been at the top level above most.  Even some of his weaker songs are super-progressive.  He was more than just a talented musician ; he was an artist and a visionary.

1 March 2016
10.22pm
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O Boogie
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How about 1/2 of the greatest songwriting partnership ever? Sounds cooler to me.

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2 March 2016
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Mademoiselle Kitty >^..^<
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The same things can be said about McCartney. I tend to agree with @O Boogie on this one.

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2 March 2016
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Derek_Francis
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JPM-Fangirl said
The same things can be said about McCartney. I tend to agree with @O Boogie on this one.

"experimental music

He was beautifully inconsistent and never did the same thing twice.

took lots of risks each time.  

Even some of his weaker songs are super-progressive.  

he was an artist and a visionary."

Not sure if all these things can be applied to Paul.  Yes, Paul has shown himself capable of all these things, with songs like "Hey Jude ", "Helter Skelter " and "Eleanor Rigby ", but like 70% of his songs have been safe pop songs.  Whereas Lennon strove to make almost all of his songs unique.

2 March 2016
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Derek_Francis
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P3pperish said
How about 1/2 of the greatest songwriting partnership ever? Sounds cooler to me.

But in their solo careers they diverged.  I never even meant this thread to be a paul vs john, but now that were in this, while paul has a solo to be proud of, it doesn't even match what lennon managed to do.  

2 March 2016
8.37am
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Starr Shine?
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I would disagree, Lennon's got his fair share of clunky lyrics. 

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2 March 2016
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O Boogie
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Derek_Francis said

P3pperish said
How about 1/2 of the greatest songwriting partnership ever? Sounds cooler to me.

But in their solo careers they diverged.  I never even meant this thread to be a paul vs john, but now that were in this, while paul has a solo to be proud of, it doesn't even match what lennon managed to do.  

Neither did I. My post wasn't John vs Paul at all. In fact, I was saying that together Lennon-McCartney are the best. 

I prefer John's solo career over Paul's, but it is also a fact that when John was alive, it was Paul who was churning out hits, and not John, and he was the most successful Beatle in terms of solo career. Still is. 

Both John & Paul have had their fair share of granny shit music. And even when it comes to lyrics, Paul wasn't a Dylan or Cohen, but neither was John. In fact I think I read it somewhere that John felt that the talent that Dylan had when it came to writing poetry sort of eluded him. I don't know whether this is true, but I think I did read it somewhere.

 

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2 March 2016
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pepperland
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I love John's songwriting but he was definitely not the best of all time. 

Aisumasen (I'm Sorry) was a copy of Jealous Guy musically and lyrically.

Old Dirt Road, in my opinion, was a copy of Imagine musically. 

Also, some of his lyrics (such as on Some Time In New York City ) were a bit juvenile and I don't think the greatest songwriter of all time would have written something like "let him free, lift the lid, bring him to his wife and kids" (from John Sinclair).

And I definitely disagree with his weaker songs being super-progressive, how was Thank You Girl progressive in any way? ("I could tell the world a thing or two about our love / I know little girl only a fool would doubt our love") a-hard-days-night-ringo-7

I don't mean to bash John though, I love practically all his songs.

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2 March 2016
4.35pm
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Derek_Francis said

JPM-Fangirl said
The same things can be said about McCartney. I tend to agree with @O Boogie on this one.

"experimental music
He was beautifully inconsistent and never did the same thing twice.

took lots of risks each time.  

Even some of his weaker songs are super-progressive.  

he was an artist and a visionary."

Not sure if all these things can be applied to Paul.  Yes, Paul has shown himself capable of all these things, with songs like "Hey Jude ", "Helter Skelter " and "Eleanor Rigby ", but like 70% of his songs have been safe pop songs.  Whereas Lennon strove to make almost all of his songs unique.

Nonsense. Such a comment doesnt even deserve a sensible reply. Its this kind of comment that riles Paul fans and no wonder.

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3 March 2016
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Derek_Francis
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Now that I'm embroiled into this, Lennon had War Is Over, Give Peace A Chance , Imagine , and Instant Karma .  Paul had Live And Let Die , which is not even in the top 5 James Bond songs.

3 March 2016
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Beatlebug
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Purely subjective

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It verges from the sublime to the ridiculote

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3 March 2016
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Evangeline
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From listening to Lennon's music it sounds like its full of angst and hatred. While McCartney may write up-beat "pop" songs you can tell he sounds like he's having the time of his life, it's what he lives for (in my opinion).  With John, he didn't seem to have a happy life and you can tell that through his music. I've never liked Lennon's solo work and I don't feel he deserves the title of "Greatest Songwriter".

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3 March 2016
11.27am
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Beatlebug
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Evangeline said
From listening to Lennon's music it sounds like its full of angst and hatred.

Angst, perhaps, but not hatred. And he had plenty of happy songs; try Oh Yoko. 

While McCartney may write up-beat "pop" songs you can tell he sounds like he's having the time of his life, it's what he lives for (in my opinion). 

 There's nothing wrong with writing upbeat pop. 

With John, he didn't seem to have a happy life and you can tell that through his music.

That's why many people feel a connection to his music, because they sympathise. He perfectly expresses things they wish they could find words for. 

I've never liked Lennon's solo work and I don't feel he deserves the title of "Greatest Songwriter".

While I don't like some of his songs, I cannot deny he is a very powerful songwroter. 

Once again, 'tis subjective a-hard-days-night-ringo-15

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3 March 2016
11.28am
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Starr Shine?
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Evangeline said
From listening to Lennon's music it sounds like its full of angst and hatred.

It's Only Love = So much angst.

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3 March 2016
11.29am
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Silly Girl said
Purely subjective

Yep but if you got enough subjects, then it starts to add up.

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3 March 2016
11.48am
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Evangeline
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Annadog40 said

Evangeline said
From listening to Lennon's music it sounds like its full of angst and hatred.

It's Only Love = So much angst.

I was referring to his solo work with that statement.

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3 March 2016
11.56am
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O Boogie
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Like How do you sleep? Paul started that war first. And I think John was more hurt than anything else.

 

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3 March 2016
12.15pm
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Evangeline
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P3pperish said
Like How do you sleep? Paul started that war first. And I think John was more hurt than anything else.

I've never figured out how Paul's song was a shot at John, but John's song was easily distinguished as a knife in the back to Paul.

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3 March 2016
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O Boogie
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Well, John figured it out, and Paul did say that it was about him. So, Paul did his fair share of knife twisting as well.

 

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3 March 2016
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Mademoiselle Kitty >^..^<
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Look, it's all personal preference whether you prefer John's solo work, Paul's, George's, or Ringo's. There's no accounting for taste.

However, claiming Paul's only solo effort worth mentioning is Live And Let Die , only proves the person making the claim never bothered to properly listen to Paul's solo work. Saying 70% of his post-Beatles work is simple pop music is another indication of not being familiar with his endeavours. 

I wonder if Derek Francis knows who the Fireman is, or whether he ever heard of Ecce Cor Meum , Standing Stone , or even the Liverpool Oratorio . If that's too outlandish, then I would like to invite him to give McCartney II a listen. There are so many gems in his catalog, and whilst he wrote many silly love songs (what's wrong with that? I'd like to know), he has a huge array of styles.

John was one of the greatest. Only a fool would contest that. But this 'John is the biggest genius that ever lived' mantra really has passed its use-by-date. If John could find it in him to praise Paul, then surely so can we? And vice versa, of course!

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