26 January 2017
I figured out why I consider Lovely Rita granny music, and it’s to do with the music. Although the chord progression isn’t a 12 bar blues (aka I/IV/V in some combination, the most predictable progression imaginable), it is still very predictable and the melody has an orderly, precise, controlled feel unlike the more free flowing melodies on say, Maybe I’m Amazed or The Fool On The Hill . This is certainly true with the other granny songs as well.
Although Paul’s ultimate Granny song When I’m Sixty Four incorporates complex chord changes with a beautiful melody that weaves through. I think there is a different way to classify Granny Music than safe and predictable.
I don’t consider Lovely Rita to be granny music, in fact I only put 4 Beatles songs in that category. However some other songs are debatable.
The reason why I deem these songs to be granny music is because they are intentionally written in the music hall style both lyrically and melodically.
Lovely Rita doesn’t fall into this category, although it has small elements of music hall. I also think it’s lyrically too suggestive to be considered granny music
You left off Ob La Di Ob La Da
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26 January 2017
The reason I refer to them as safe and predictable is because they are pretty much all written like music hall singalongs, which to work as songs you can sing along with have to be of that predictable style. Not that predictability is a bad thing, I just think it’s bad on Lovely Rita .
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21 March 2018
If John Lennon had never described When I’m Sixty Four as granny music in the first place, nobody would be even using this term. The gospel according to Saint John. Professor Lennon’s musings on the Beatles’ songs have always got up my nose. It seems now that every McCartney song that people dislike is deemed to be ‘granny’ music. A sexist and ageist term coming from Lennon anyway (er, grandpa music anyone?). The idea that older women with grandchildren only like a certain type of music is patronising. Music hall was loved by both men and women, old and young, including children, and if the definitions given of this type of music is anything to go by, then I would say a good many of Lennon’s songs belong in the granny category as well.
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22 December 2013
It seems now that every McCartney song that people dislike is deemed to be ‘granny’ music. Pretty sexist and ageist term coming from Lennon anyway (er, grandpa music anyone?). The idea that older women with grandchildren only like a certain type of music is pretty patronising
This reminded me of a recent thread about Paul’s supposed ‘MASSive Ego’… Why zone in on John here?… My Sweet George could also be singled out for his “fruity” remarks about ‘Maxwell’s Silver Hammer ‘… Even Ringo had strong remarks about ‘Maxwell’s Silver Hammer ‘ http://ultimateclassicrock.com…..-hammer/ which, for the record, is one of my favourite tracks off of ‘Abbey Road ‘s first side anyway (where all 6 are in a first place tie!)…:-)
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21 March 2018
Being about the McCartney song Lovely Rita and the various comments it’s drawn, I don’t see the relevancy of George and Ringo’s comments about MSH. My point being that John made his granny music comments very public in his Rolling Stone interviews and elsewhere – since then this derogatory phrase has pretty much become ingrained, unlike “fruity” or any other terms the others may have used (yes, McCartney too) to describe each others work. You never see “twenty Beatles songs that Paul/George/Ringo hated” etc. bandied around. Lennon’s opinions have been well and truly aired on his colleagues’ songs (not just Paul’s) in the mainstream media. He was known for being a motor mouth so that doesn’t make him exempt from being called out any more than the other three for their foibles.
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14 May 2015
Being about the McCartney song Lovely Rita and the various comments it’s drawn, I don’t see the relevancy of George and Ringo’s comments about MSH. My point being that John made his granny music comments very public in his Rolling Stone interviews and elsewhere – since then this derogatory phrase has pretty much become ingrained, unlike “fruity” or any other terms the others may have used (yes, McCartney too) to describe each others work. You never see “twenty Beatles songs that Paul/George/Ringo hated” etc. bandied around do you? Lennon’s opinions have been well and truly aired on his colleagues’ songs (not just Paul’s) in the mainstream media. He was known for being a motor mouth so that doesn’t make him exempt from being called out any more than the other three for their foibles.
I’d say John was the curmudgeon of the Fab Four. Come to think of it, I can’t think of any time Paul, whether speaking unsolicited or answering an interviewer, ever sniped or badmouthed any of John’s songs..
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20 August 2013
While in Oklahoma City yesterday, I was reminded that the parking meter was invented and first used in Oklahoma. https://www.history.com/this-d…..-installed
Cool thought that Paul McCartney mentions a parking meter in a song. Maybe that is one of the reasons I formed an attachment to the song early on in my Bealtes life.
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10 April 2017
I love the harmonies on this track. Very similar to A Day In The Life .
However, that being said, I can see why some people might not like it too much. The lyrics aren’t bad but they don’t hold up to a lot of the other tracks on Sgt. Pepper . The psychedelic aspect to the song does make it stand out a lot though and stops it from being ‘granny’ music (to me anyway), as some people might call it. I don’t like it quite as much as I did when I first listened to it, but I think it’s a good song nevertheless.
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24 July 2018
Paul has lived a long life, so his canonization is deferred. Harrison gets celebrated for bringing Indian influences to the group, people marvel at the exotic textures of “Love You To ” and “The Inner Light ,” but Paul’s deft touch at pastiches in bygone styles (“When I’m Sixty-Four ,” “Honey Pie “) is made to seem something pernicious. When, really, he was doing what John and George were doing: he was bringing a passion of his to the collective that the others may not have brought.
That said, I could not take the author of “Good Night ” very seriously when he complained about “granny music.” That is not a knock on “Good Night .” It does its job well as a conclusion to the White Album , and Ringo’s singing has the charming awkwardness that it had at its best; he was a perfect choice to sell it. I introduce it only as an inconvenient piece of evidence for John, who was always a highly entertaining talker, and often insightful, but not so rigorous in intellectual consistency. Even he, to his credit, realized that. Sometimes you could tell he had his own number. He’d complain about all the repeated takes of Paul’s songs (when now we know from studio logs that they also worked things like “Sexy Sadie ” to death), and then he’d also complain about how hurt he was when Paul went off and recorded something on his own. Like, pick a position, man.
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8 January 2015
That is an excellent take on the song and John @What Petty Crime, glad to have you along!
John very cunningly played to a general feeling in artistic culture which is that there must be some progression in art, and therefore songs like Lovely Rita must be backward-looking if they evoke an older style. Of course this is rubbish, it never seemed to bother him when George Martin added baroque touches to their songs.
But what is Lovely Rita ? The use of the rhythm and in particular the walking bassline of the song are a musical reference to jazz, like the simulated horn stabs of the paper combs, and a ragtime piano. And you have a similar form to jazz performance, you have the theme at the beginning, there’s a solo and then the theme at the end, right?
If that was all it was, we’d wonder at its inclusion on the album (not one but TWO granny songs!), but then we get a coda that goes in a completely different direction. You’re fooled by the continuity of the rhythms but the jazz has suddenly become bebop or cool, the key is minor, and the boys are making spooky noises. Wait , what? And you can listen to this for decades like I have and never quite figure out the magic of it. What seems like a nice boy meets girl story turns into unrequited lust, but if so that’s an odd way of resolving it given that we’re talking about a band who could write whole songs about lust very directly with the naughty words changed (I wanna hold your hand yeah right). It’s definitely not evoking that feeling for me. And that requires me to reevaluate the song as an ironic performance, a deliberate parodic pastiche where it’s just the background music to a romantic comedy except the composer was fed up with writing happy songs and decided to screw with the audience and see how far he could push that.
And the problem with even that reading is that then you’d have to apply it to an awful lot of Paul’s mid-Beatle to late-Beatle period (and possibly beyond); it’s difficult to understand Maxwell’s Silver Hammer without some reach into the ironic/parodic bag. Then we’d have to address the problem that we really don’t understand the guy writing the songs we thought we understood, and at this stage it’s pretty much too late to figure him out.
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