Please consider registering
Guest

sp_LogInOut Log In sp_Registration Register

Register | Lost password?
Advanced Search

— Forum Scope —






— Match —





— Forum Options —





Minimum search word length is 3 characters - maximum search word length is 84 characters

sp_Feed sp_TopicIcon
Paperback Writer
sp_BlogLink Read the original blog post
No permission to create posts
13 February 2013
1.28am
Avatar
RunForYourLife
London Palladium
Forum Posts: 153
Member Since:
17 November 2011
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

I seem to recall having read in some article (Can't remember where, probably one of the reasons I'm skeptical) that in addition to the usual culprits (strain of touring, studio experimentation, etc.) one of the reasons that the group went in such a different direction with Sgt. Pepper was some negative critical response to "Paperback Writer". I'd never heard of this before, and I can't seem to find any reference to such a thing. Am I to assume that the author of the article was mistaken? (He'd hardly be the first)

13 February 2013
11.26am
Avatar
meanmistermustard
Moderator



Forum Posts: 19344
Member Since:
1 May 2011
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Were the beatles bothered by criticism by that time, especially by the press? I have the mindset that they were so confident in themselves and what they were doing that that the press reaction didnt matter to them that much. I read somewhere that Paperback Writer entered at number 4 in the UK and climbed to number 1 the next week (if thats true) so criticism might have come from that i suppose (not entering at number 1 so someone thought to have a go at the different sound) but at least 1 paper negitively reviewed She Loves You so it wasnt new to them.

Have searched the net however and found this on The Beatles Biography (no source is given).

There was an abrupt change in direction due to the Beatles' decision to stop touring in 1966. Reportedly stung by criticism of "Paperback Writer", the Beatles poured their creative energies into the recording studio in a determined attempt to produce material they could be proud of. There had already been a clear trend towards progressively greater complexity both in technique and style, but this now accelerated noticeably, as was evident on "Revolver". The subject matter of the post-touring songs was no longer you, I, love, boy meets girl, etc., and this took them very far from the days in 1963 when their material had shown some similarity with, say, the work of The Hollies. Now all manner of subjects were introduced, from home repair and circuses to nonsense songs and others that defied description.

First time ive ever come across anything of that sort and i cant find anything else anywhere.

"I told you everything I could about me, Told you everything I could" ('Before Believing' - Emmylou Harris) 

"Don't make your love suffer insecurities; Trade the baggage of "self" to set another one free" ('Paper Skin' - Kendall Payne)

13 February 2013
5.51pm
Avatar
vonbontee
Inside an Apple Orchard in a Letterbox
Rishikesh
Forum Posts: 2815
Member Since:
1 December 2009
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Seems to me there was barely any notion of pop music criticism in 1966, or at least not much reason to take it seriously. And "Paperback Writer" itself was pretty substantial, so what kind of criticism could they have reacted to by seeking out more complexity? It seems to me that, by venturing away from simple love songs with simple rock-band instrumentation and production, they were pondering the possibility of leaving their audience behind - at least they were asked if they were concerned about that by at least one journalist.

But who knows, whether it's essentially "true" or not, I can imagine Paul saying something like this, years after the fact. Like for instance, maybe Paul read some negative remark about "Paperback Writer" by some journo, even something as trivial as "This doesn't sound like a hit," and never forgot about it. Then years later, he's reminiscing about recording "Pepper" and mentions how hard they all worked on it, and gives the "Paperback Writer" slight as a reason, just as a kind of throwaway remark in some interview somewhere. Then, the unnamed writer of that "Beatles Biography" article reads that interview and recalls the Paul remark. That seems to me like a plausible scenario.

(Of course, I have to admit that it's the scenario I'd most like to believe, personally. The notion that the band ever recorded music to please anybody but themselves primarily is extremely distasteful to me. One I all but refuse to believe, in fact.)

I remember George saying 'Blimey, he's always talking about “Yesterday”, you'd think he was Beethoven or somebody' - Paul McCartney

14 February 2013
6.27pm
Avatar
Beatlebob63
St Peters Church
Forum Posts: 11
Member Since:
1 February 2013
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

My opinion is there is no truth to any of it, Paperback Writer was written, recorded and performed just as anything else was at the time, in their power and creativity.  They set the times, if anything they played up to the press and the so called coined Beatlemania and made fun of it all even in post performing dayz.  That's what kept them from drug overdoses, and the pressures of fame, they made fun of themselves.

The only song or songs they did for someone else was for Ringo, you must be mistaking the press article regarding THE MONKEES, because with them it WAS true.  They did a version of Pleasant Valley Sunday that knocked everone's sox off when it came to performing their own songs.  Nesmith (and Tork, the most musically inclined out of all of them) put an end to that perception..Hmm...just about the same time as Paperback Writer, 1966....

 

 

 

Ask Me Why?,,,,,,,Well, I'll tell you Why............

14 February 2013
7.42pm
Avatar
vonbontee
Inside an Apple Orchard in a Letterbox
Rishikesh
Forum Posts: 2815
Member Since:
1 December 2009
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Actually "Pleasant Valley Sunday" was a year after "Paperback Writer"...

I remember George saying 'Blimey, he's always talking about “Yesterday”, you'd think he was Beethoven or somebody' - Paul McCartney

16 February 2013
4.43am
Avatar
RunForYourLife
London Palladium
Forum Posts: 153
Member Since:
17 November 2011
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

"Last Train To Clarksville" was inspired by the fade-out to "Paperback Writer".

17 February 2013
3.53pm
Avatar
Monkey Finger
The Kaiserkeller
Forum Posts: 49
Member Since:
9 February 2013
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Any criticism of PW I've ever read mainly has to do with the song not being substantive, and I suppose it sort of isn't, but I've always loved it (that riff is killer!. To me it's always been one of the most "Beatles-y" sounding tracks they ever did, if that makes any sense. I think its critics see it as the kind of thing L-M were capable of more or less writing in their sleep and therefore didn't/don't take it that seriously.

 

 

17 February 2013
5.13pm
Avatar
Beatlebob63
St Peters Church
Forum Posts: 11
Member Since:
1 February 2013
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Paul was also reflecting on johns poems and In His Own Write being published, it's was kind of like 'good for you mate' since John was very private about his writings that's a lot of what the song is about as well and Paul just wrote about it.

18 February 2013
2.37am
Avatar
Ron Nasty
Apple rooftop
Forum Posts: 5652
Member Since:
17 December 2012
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Beatlebob63 said
Paul was also reflecting on johns poems and In His Own Write being published, it's was kind of like 'good for you mate' since John was very private about his writings that's a lot of what the song is about as well and Paul just wrote about it.

John was never, ever, "private about his writings". At school, his handwritten-drawn copies of "The Daily Howl" were passed around. He wrote nonsense pieces for Bill Harry's "Mersey Beat" newspaper on a regular basis, including the most amusing "Being a Short Diversion on the Dubious Origins of Beatles (Translated from The John Lennon)" (worth seeking out), and several pieces that ended up in "In His Own Write". John might have been surprised at the offer of a book deal, but he never hid his writing.

"I only said we were bigger than Rod... and now there's all this!" Ron Nasty

18 February 2013
4.30pm
Avatar
Linde
The Netherlands
Rishikesh
Forum Posts: 2721
Member Since:
21 November 2012
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

I don't really know what to discuss, but IMO Paperback Writer is a bit boring and I don't listen to it too often.

And yeah, it never seemed like John was hiding it.

18 February 2013
6.55pm
Avatar
meanmistermustard
Moderator



Forum Posts: 19344
Member Since:
1 May 2011
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

John went on a few shows to promote A Spaniard In The Works in '65. Thinking about it there are a handful of clips of reading stories from the first two he wrote.

Very funny clip.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v.....hec4z-l32k

"I told you everything I could about me, Told you everything I could" ('Before Believing' - Emmylou Harris) 

"Don't make your love suffer insecurities; Trade the baggage of "self" to set another one free" ('Paper Skin' - Kendall Payne)

18 February 2013
8.15pm
Avatar
Ron Nasty
Apple rooftop
Forum Posts: 5652
Member Since:
17 December 2012
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

John's first appearance on Peter Cook and Dudley Moore's Not Only... But Also, was made-up of interpretations of his writing. It is something to behold:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v.....C4ipJdmH2Q

"I only said we were bigger than Rod... and now there's all this!" Ron Nasty

18 February 2013
8.23pm
Avatar
meanmistermustard
Moderator



Forum Posts: 19344
Member Since:
1 May 2011
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

John promoting A Spaniard In The Works on the BBC1 show Tonight on the 18th June '65.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v.....xApnG3JMQY

"I told you everything I could about me, Told you everything I could" ('Before Believing' - Emmylou Harris) 

"Don't make your love suffer insecurities; Trade the baggage of "self" to set another one free" ('Paper Skin' - Kendall Payne)

19 February 2013
8.09pm
Avatar
Beatlebob63
St Peters Church
Forum Posts: 11
Member Since:
1 February 2013
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

mja6758 said

Beatlebob63 said
Paul was also reflecting on johns poems and In His Own Write being published, it's was kind of like 'good for you mate' since John was very private about his writings that's a lot of what the song is about as well and Paul just wrote about it.

John was never, ever, "private about his writings". At school, his handwritten-drawn copies of "The Daily Howl" were passed around. He wrote nonsense pieces for Bill Harry's "Mersey Beat" newspaper on a regular basis, including the most amusing "Being a Short Diversion on the Dubious Origins of Beatles (Translated from The John Lennon)" (worth seeking out), and several pieces that ended up in "In His Own Write". John might have been surprised at the offer of a book deal, but he never hid his writing.

Yes, I agree, 'private' was not a good choice of words, in what I've read it seemed the overall feel was that he thought they weren't really any good in the early days, just his thing, always writing, drawing cartoons.... I read 'In his Own Write' and was wondering just that if there was a compleat Being a Short Diversion ...." out there, would love to read that one...

19 February 2013
9.07pm
Avatar
Ron Nasty
Apple rooftop
Forum Posts: 5652
Member Since:
17 December 2012
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Beatlebob63 said

I read 'In his Own Write' and was wondering just that if there was a compleat Being a Short Diversion ...." out there, would love to read that one...

It can be found at http://www.triumphpc.com/merse.....ious.shtml

The following people thank Ron Nasty for this post:

Bongo

"I only said we were bigger than Rod... and now there's all this!" Ron Nasty

22 November 2015
11.03am
Avatar
meanmistermustard
Moderator



Forum Posts: 19344
Member Since:
1 May 2011
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Listening to this yesterday and it hit me just how short the track is - 2 minutes 19 seconds - and it comes across as even shorter due to how fast it goes by. If written nowadays it would be substantially longer.

Nice to see Google is on the ball with the track details. Must be a rare copy of 'The White Album'.ahdn_paul_01

paper.JPGImage Enlarger

The following people thank meanmistermustard for this post:

I was the walrus, Mr. Kite, natureaker, Silly Girl, Zig, Bongo, BeatleSnut

"I told you everything I could about me, Told you everything I could" ('Before Believing' - Emmylou Harris) 

"Don't make your love suffer insecurities; Trade the baggage of "self" to set another one free" ('Paper Skin' - Kendall Payne)

22 November 2015
7.00pm
Avatar
ewe2
Inside the beat
Candlestick Park
Forum Posts: 1653
Member Since:
8 January 2015
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Yes, it really fit the 2min singles culture.

I'm like Necko only I'm a bassist ukulele synthesizer penguin and also everyone. Or is everyone me? Now I'm a confused bassist ukulele synthesizer penguin everyone who is definitely not @Joe.

2 May 2016
6.31pm
Avatar
leoc
Casbah Coffee Club
Forum Posts: 19
Member Since:
8 December 2015
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

MacDonald says

"Paperback Writer" offers a jokey lyric reflecting its era of classless ambition: the generation of 'young metors' who in the mid-Sixties rose from provincial and working-class backgrounds to dazzle the heights of British fashion, film and print.

as well as noting the lyrical connection to the Rubber Soul "comedy songs" ("Norwegian Wood", "Drive My Car", and "Day Tripper"). But I think this partly missed the point: it isn't only hot young mid-'Sixties fiction writers or photographers who fit the "Paperback Writer" portrait closely enough to be cut by the satire. An unheralded teenage nobody desperate for success as a lowbrow artist, naively eager to please, showing no obvious promise but mustard-keen to have a go at hacking out anything that could get his foot on the ladder: this is dangerously close to a jaded, unflattering portrait of Lennon and McCartney themselves as they were a few years previously, and there's surely no way that McCartney wasn't self-aware enough to realise it. Put that alongside the fact that it's closely related to "Drive My Car", another song that takes a jab at fame-obsessed strivers, as well as the "based on a novel by a man named Lear" poke at Lennon himself, and the narrator of "Paperback Writer" looks like another Beatles alter ego to go with the Nowhere Man (a self-portrait of Lennon in his fat-Elvis phase), Sgt. Pepper's club band, the animal-headed crew from "I Am The Walrus", and the lounge singers in the "Your Mother Should Know" video.

The following people thank leoc for this post:

Ahhh Girl, Shamrock Womlbs, pepperland
4 June 2016
4.24am
Wigwam
Candlestick Park
Forum Posts: 1261
Member Since:
17 October 2013
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
4 June 2016
9.37am
Avatar
Ahhh Girl
sailing on a winedark open sea
Moderator


Forum Posts: 12636
Member Since:
20 August 2013
sp_UserOnlineSmall Online

^ Lots of good videos in that article.

No permission to create posts
Forum Timezone: America/Chicago

Most Users Ever Online: 597

Currently Online: Ahhh Girl, Starr Shine?, Leppo
120 Guest(s)

Currently Browsing this Page:
1 Guest(s)

Top Posters:

Starr Shine?: 12540

Silly Girl: 8793

parlance: 7065

mr. Sun king coming together: 6429

Mr. Kite: 6131

trcanberra: 5894

Ron Nasty: 5651

Necko: 5629

mithveaen: 4618

AppleScruffJunior: 4071

Member Stats:

Guest Posters: 87

Members: 2128

Moderators: 4

Admins: 2

Forum Stats:

Groups: 3

Forums: 42

Topics: 4032

Posts: 230803

Newest Members:

ash arnold, heyjudethenovel, Brentfamily10, raeger, Glimik

Moderators: Ahhh Girl: 12631, meanmistermustard: 19340, Zig: 8772, Joe: 4558

Administrators: Joe: 4558, Ellie: 4

Members Birthdays
sp_BirthdayIcon
Today: None
Upcoming: davedrum, dropT, mariconsoy