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9 November 2018
1.46am
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Tony Japanese
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I've always considered this to be primarily John's song if only because he sang it. Discounting the tunes they wrote for George and Ringo, the only other example (I can think of) of the main composer not being the lead singer is Every Little Thing .

I don't necessarily agree with the suggestion that John's always right about songwriting credits, and Paul's just bitter et al. After all John once claimed to have written most of the words to Eleanor Rigby , whereas others (i.e. Pete Shotton) have suggested he contributed sod all. As with most things, the truth is probably somewhere in the middle and I expect the same is true about In My Life .

19 May 2020
8.26pm
Marcelo
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A week ago popular youtuber Rick Beato did a live streaming analysis of "In My Life " and put forth the proposition that George Martin is the co-author of the harmony because the chord progression and melody are complex and is universally known that the boys didn't read or write scores (at least at that point, I don't know if Paul later learned that ability) and their music theory knowledge was self-taught and unsystematic. So, what I think Beato says in a nutshell is that it's not possible to academically untrained musicians to write such great songs.

Ah, he also attribute main (partial) authorship to Paul, though it's one of John's masterpieces.

Anyways, that's a bold statement and that idea doesn't seem to be possible to me, and more importantly, there's lines that must not be crossed.

Thoughts? Objections?

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19 May 2020
9.20pm
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Ron Nasty
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You do not need to be able to technically write down music to come up with music, no more than someone needs to be able to physically write words to be good with spoken language.

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19 May 2020
11.13pm
Marcelo
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Ron Nasty said
You do not need to be able to technically write down music to come up with music, no more than someone needs to be able to physically write words to be good with spoken language.

  

Exactly what I think. They were studying by listening to R&B records, among other types of music.

I just remember a previous video by this youtuber where he explain that Kurt Cobain completed the harmonies in his songs with the melody of his voice over the power chords he played (these types of chords are incomplete, harmonically speaking), and he said that even though Kurt have limited theory knowledge, he did it intuitively.

But not the Beatles, who were Kurt's inspiration.

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20 May 2020
3.55pm
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sir walter raleigh
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The debate over ownership came up in the Bracket thread, and I argued that Paul and GM contributed to the composition of the song, but Rick is a bit bold in his claims in this video. I like Rick’s videos but his argument is a bit weak here. Surely John or Paul are capable of constructing that progression. As RN points out its rather intuitive, and not insanely complicated. 

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3 August 2020
12.28am
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IAmTheLongbus
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Imo it's definitely the most beautiful song they ever recorded. Just like Joe said the take/arrangement is just perfect harmonically, melodically and rhythmically (and not to mention lyrically and John's voice alone!). Whether you believe in a higher power or not, sometimes you are just a vessel for that higher power to create divine pieces of art that can never be replicated.

It's weird though that this song seems to have been largely overlooked both during the sixties and the rest of John's life? If I recall correctly Michelle received some award around a year or so after the release of Rubber Soul , and Yesterday was, as we all know, hailed as a masterpiece... But was In My Life even mentioned anywhere? It's a bit perplexing to be honest.

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3 August 2020
2.49pm
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Beatlebug
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I mean, it's one of the Beatles' best-known and best-loved songs, earning a spot at a thousand births, deaths, and weddings since it came out, so I'd say it's done pretty well for itself.

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3 August 2020
6.24pm
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Jules
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@IAmTheLongbus said

It's weird though that this song seems to have been largely overlooked both during the sixties and the rest of John's life? If I recall correctly Michelle  received some award around a year or so after the release of Rubber Soul  , and Yesterday  was, as we all know, hailed as a masterpiece... But was In My Life  even mentioned anywhere? It's a bit perplexing to be honest.

I'm not saying this negatively but I think you're wrong, I think that song gets the praise it deserves. It has been consistenly ranked as one of their most beloved, and most well-known songs.

Even from personal experience this is true. A guy I knew played the guitar and it was the only Beatle song he could play, as well as one of my best friends who doesn't really listen to the Beatles that much but listens to In My Life all the time, and I live in a Spanish-speaking country. In this forum alone it has been ranked #13 Best Canon Beatle Song on the 2018 forum poll results (tied with Helter Skelter and Twist And Shout ), it currently sits as the #1 Rubber Soul track on the "Rank the song on Rubber Soul " averaging and it even won #2 place on this year's Madness Bracket behind just Strawberry Fields Forever , technically. Currently it is the #9 most popular Beatles song on Spotify with over 140 millon listens, taking over around 1/4 of the overall listens off Rubber Soul (a 14 track album).

According to Wikipedia: "Rolling Stone magazine ranked "In My Life " number 23 on its list of "The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time", as well as fifth on their list of the Beatles' "100 Greatest Songs". The song placed second on CBC's 50 Tracks. Mojo magazine named itthe best song of all time in 2000. According to Acclaimed Music, it is the 160th most celebrated song in popular music history. [and this would make it the 8th most celebrated Beatles song]"

Even all of this being from the 2000s and on, I highly doubt all of this praise started recently, as I believe the song's been consistently praised since it came out. I've never heard anybody claim it is underrated, and even my father recalls listening to it in his youth. Although Michelle was apparently the "most popular track on US radio" at the time and it was a succesful single, In My Life has always felt like an essential part of Rubber Soul as well.

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4 August 2020
2.05am
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IAmTheLongbus
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Yeah, I agree that it's most certainly not underrated nowadays. What I meant was that the song seems to have been a little overlooked during John's lifetime compared to songs like Yesterday and Strawberry Fields Forever ... Just like Revolver also wasn't considered to be their best album (by musicians and many fans) until a few decades after its release. But I may be a little bit biased since I hadn't heard this song even once before I became a Beatle fan in my late teen years. I had heard a lot of the other famous songs, but oddly enough never this one.

But I could definitely be wrong and you're probably more knowledgeable in this matter than me.

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