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Should "Free as a Bird" and "Real Love" count as canon Beatles Songs?
11 July 2015
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Starr Shine?
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^ The Yellow sub is on the album and official releases 

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11 July 2015
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Matt Busby
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Necko said
Yeah.  I count them.

It's the closest thing there will ever be to a Beatles reunion.  Also, you have to keep in mind that there are many songs, especially from the White Album onwards, that only some of the Beatles appear on.  Technically, Real Love and Free As A Bird are Beatles songs more so than Why Don't We Do It In The Road?, Don't Pass Me By , and She Said She Said , because the full line-up (plus Jeff Lynne) appears on the reunion songs.

I'm going to add my vote as a 'no'. I've thanked several commenters who echoed my sentiments probably better than I could have put them.  I picked your post to reply to because I propose to counter your reasons 😉

"close" only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades! One could argue that band lineups change, but they keep the same name (and the Beatles did that with Pete, but see my next sentence). I think that is a non sequitor here, because the Beatles have consistently said (and still do say) "We were always John, Paul, George, and Ringo", and Pete didn't appear on any released material as the Beatles when they were together.

As far as Jeff Lynne, I'd hardly count him as making RL and FAAB more real "Beatles" songs. I'm not sure if you were implying that or not. I've seen some discussion here of Lynne's influence on the songs, and I'm on the fence there. Yes, the songs do have somewhat of an ELO sound, but at the same time, I think it's very possible that had the Beatles continued past 1970, they would have found this particular "sound" at some point (the arrangements in MMT are along this line and I'd bet money that Lynne was influenced by MMT in particular). That isn't enough for me to consider them canon material though.

To make it perfectly clear, I consider the canon to be everything officially recorded and released by the Beatles during the time they called themselves the Beatles. That consists of 12 albums and a bunch of singles. As much as I love Let it Be...Naked (to the point of wishing it had been the version originally released), I don't include it. It also doesn't include their covers, or their BBC broadcasts. That stuff is the Beatles, without a doubt - just not canon. Along the same vein, I don't consider the remixes canon.

All that said, I don't see it as that big of a deal. Although the purpose of this site is to discuss, argue, and disseminate information about the Beatles (and we'll go on doing so for the forseeable future), the purpose of music is to be enjoyed, however it's classified. Canon or not, it's great music and I love it 🙂

Half of what I say is meaningless...

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11 July 2015
7.33pm
Wigwam
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Ahhh Girl said
^Snort. LOL, @Wigwam.
_____

I do a lot of work all year. It is all mine. However, I only put the best stuff from the year in my evaluation portfolio. That's my "canon".

That makes sense......A judgement on quality......

SO........Act Naturally is in.........Real Love is out......is as tough to swallow as a Glass Onion .

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11 July 2015
8.18pm
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Ron Nasty
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Wigwam said

@Ahhh Girl said
^Snort. LOL, @Wigwam.
_____

I do a lot of work all year. It is all mine. However, I only put the best stuff from the year in my evaluation portfolio. That's my "canon".

That makes sense......A judgement on quality......

SO........Act Naturally is in.........Real Love is out......is as tough to swallow as a Glass Onion .

No, Wigwam, a personal judgement based on what someone believes at the time. Someone may come back years later, even a person involved, and believe the judgement wrong, but that doesn't change the judgement at the time.

Joe maybe calls it best on the song page, by referring to "career", "also", and "extra". However successful one regards them, and I personally like both, they are really an addendum to the career, and those of us who argue against see these nuances. We just say that what they released in the 60s is the core/canon, and everything else is just wonderful (and sometimes not so) additions to that career/core/canon.

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The Beatles Bible 2020 non-Canon Poll Part One: 1958-1963 and Part Two: 1964-August 1966

11 July 2015
8.51pm
Wigwam
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So the canon is not specifically related to quality.......Dates are more important?

OK.

 

R girl..... Ahhh you paying attention?

11 July 2015
9.34pm
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Ron Nasty
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We all know @meanmistermustard extreme dislike for Hold Me Tight . We also know mmm well enough to know he wouldn't argue that it is not a part of the canon.

We all know that many of us would have preferred to see Leave My Kitten Alone  on Beatles For Sale  in place of Mister Moonlight, but you do not hear us argue that Kitten should replace Moonlight in the canon.

The canon is simply those recordings they chose to release commercially while they were an active group, between Love Me Do  and Let It Be . Those of us who use the "canon" description do not vary on what is in or out of coming under that description. That is not to say we do not love much that we consider non-canon, oft times more than some of those we argue are canon.

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The Beatles Bible 2020 non-Canon Poll Part One: 1958-1963 and Part Two: 1964-August 1966

12 July 2015
5.31am
Wigwam
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We have the word 'canon'....and your definition and understanding of the word is correct and therefore it can't be argued with.

'Act Naturally ' is canon ...'Real Love ' and Free As A Bird are not and various reasons are given for that. Simplifying it down to the two main ones: 

Reason 1.

Not all the Beatles were around to OK them.....So they are not true 'Beatles' songs......Though all 4 played a part in either conception and/or their realisation, because John didn't have a final say, these two songs must be ruled out.

Reason 2.

Quality is not relevant to 'canon'.

R Girl submits the best of her year's work and considers that to be her 'canon'..... But her understanding of the word 'canon' you state is flawed and the best work of an artist doesn't necessarily represent that artist's canon of work.

'No, Wigwam, a personal judgement based on what someone believes at the time. Someone may come back years later, even a person involved, and believe the judgement wrong, but that doesn't change the judgement at the time.'

 In the Beatles case, because these songs fall outside a defined period......The 60's, they simply can't be considered as 'canon'.

 

To understand your viewpoint better I have a question relating to what circumstances then would make them canon.

If john were alive and Real Love and Free As A Bird were recorded as part of a reunion he would presumably have had the final say but would they, having been recorded outside of the 60's still not be considered part of The Beatle's 'canon'? Have a think about that.

 

As I've said I'm OK with whatever as it doesn't affect me in the slightest.......

 

But If I were Paul McCartney ......( A crazy hypothetical coming for your entertainment).....and an Alien visiting Earth is told that.

"The greatest musical canon in the Earth's popular music industry is the Beatles' canon and we all rather proud of it."....(Paul blushes)

So to understand something about the the Earth's greatest group, the alien having time to listen to only one song plucks out of the internet, from their catalogue, "Free As A Bird " But you, or Joe are standing nearby and helpfully say...

'Tisk tisk .......Sorry Mr Alien Thingy that's not strictly  Canon.......Could you er pick another song please..."

"OK...... Oh says the alien this sounds an interesting title"...and he settles on Act Naturally .......

 

As I say, if I were Paul my boot would have found both your shins...

 

Peas and Luv

12 July 2015
6.50am
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If I were Paul. I'd announce in a post on this forum that everything the Beatles ever did is canon except the original Let It Be album and She Said She Said cause Paul didn't want the former and didn't work on the later. And since I would be Paul on this forum, everyone would be too star struck to disagree! MHAHAHAHAHA

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12 July 2015
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Bongo
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Ron Nasty said
The canon is simply those recordings they chose to release commercially while they were an active group, between Love Me Do  and Let It Be . 

Let It Be came out around the same time as McCartney's first solo LP, therefore can also be considered non canon.

Although Yesterday was recorded during their active years, Paul was the only Beatle on this recording.

Food for thought???

http://i276.photobucket.com/albums/kk38/rickdelsie/The%20Beatles/parlunread_zps28270d9d.gif BEATLES Music gives me Eargasms!  apple01

12 July 2015
7.11am
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^ She Said She Said didn't have Paul on it. Within You Without You was only George.

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12 July 2015
7.31am
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Its not how many Beatles are on the record; Paul alone played on 'Yesterday ' in 1965, George the only Beatle on 'Within You, Without You' etc. All four Beatles sanctioned those recordings despite them not playing on them; same goes with 'Let It Be '. As much as Paul hated what Spector did to 'The Long And Winding Road ' he still agreed to its and the 'Let It Be ' album release, it just wasn't to affect his solo album hence why 'Let It Be ' was released two weeks after 'McCartney' and why Ringo went round to see Paul and got thrown out.

Three Beatles played on 'I'm The Greatest' but no one is claiming its a Beatle record, same with 'All Those Years Ago'. Not even the ex-Beatles themselves.

Its not about pre-'McCartney' (the lp) as Ringo ('Sentimental Journey'), John (albums with Yoko; 'Two Virgins ', 'Life With The Lions ', 'Wedding Album ' plus singles 'Cold Turkey ' 'Give Peace A Chance ', 'Instant Karma '), and George ('Electronic Sound ', 'Wonderwall') had all released solo (or non-Beatles) records before 'Let It Be ' was released. Nearly all band members have solo projects and releases that dont influence the groups official releases.

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12 July 2015
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Ron Nasty
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@Bongo The release of Let It Be  occurred before Paul started proceedings at the High Court to dissolve The Beatles partnership, and is therefore rightly viewed as the last album before the break-up.

Though, with the press release that was issued with McCartney many people suspected it was over, the press release was equivocal, and nobody knew for sure. One only need look at the contemporary reviews of Let It Be  to realise how uncertain people were if it really was the end at the time. Alan Smith, for instance, reviewing it for NME, wrote, "If the new Beatles' soundtrack is to be their last then it will stand as a cheapskate epitaph, a cardboard tombstone, a sad and tatty end to a musical fusion which wiped clean and drew again the face of pop."

@Wigwam Had The Beatles reunited and become an active group again, good or bad, short-lived or ongoing, any material they produced would be canon. The sad fact is, because of that man, and the premature loss of John, we were forever denied that possibility. The ultimate definition is not the time period (the 60s), but the functioning of the group, and Free As A Bird  and Real Love  did not constitute the return of The Beatles as an active band.

And in your alien scenario, I'm sure many of us would suggest the alien listen to what we considered their best/our own favourite Beatles track if they only had time for one song. I doubt either Free As A Bird  or Act Naturally  would be in the running.

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12 July 2015
8.07am
Wigwam
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You can't say its about all 4 sanctioning a song.......

 

"Here Paul that Wild Honey Pie is crap and Blackbird 's just a pile of pigeon poo.......It does nothing for me....... It doesn't get on the album."

"Err Ringo....you can Foxtrot oscar!!"

 

And Ron....

 

And in your alien scenario, I'm sure many of us would suggest the alien listen to what we considered their best/our own favourite Beatles track if they only had time for one song. I doubt either Free As A Bird or Act Naturally would be in the running.

 

You missed the point.........Which was the quality of the opposing canon and non-canon songs.

 

@Wigwam_1 Had The Beatles reunited and become an active group again, good or bad, short-lived or ongoing, any material they produced would be canon. The sad fact is, because of that man, and the premature loss of John, we were forever denied that possibility. The ultimate definition is not the time period (the 60s), but the functioning of the group, and Free As A Bird and Real Love did not constitute the return of The Beatles as an active band.

 

'Short lived' fits your earlier description of 'active'.......The single in the case of FAAB had the fab four in good form, lead vocals and main composer John, verses sang by Paul and George......(I can't recall that before)......plus a scintillating guitar passage.

 

However much we see your point.......And however precise words should be........However dead John was. All we need is Love and our ears....and we can hear him.... ..he's there. Free As A Bird and soaring above us.  

 

Still either way you have your way and welcome. 

12 July 2015
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You cannot deny that all four sanctioned the albums as they were released; the rule in the Beatles was all four had to agree (or not disagree/veto - there is a difference) or they didnt do it. Whether one liked a song or not is immaterial as all four still didn't say no to its inclusion. All four compromised on what was on the albums; its what you do when you're in a band, you dont get everything you want otherwise. The 'White Album ' would never have been issued without compromise.

George wanted the 'Let It Be ' release over and done with, same as with Ringo so they went with John. Paul was the biggest opponent but still didnt block it despite what so many want to think.

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12 July 2015
8.49am
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'Whether one liked a song or not is immaterial as all four still didn't say no to its inclusion.'

 

So whether John liked or disliked FAAB is immaterial if the other three were happy?

12 July 2015
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Ron Nasty
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And here is the killer for me, should the living Beatles and the representatives of those we have sadly lost, consider that these two tracks be considered as part of their core catalogue/canon, why were they absent from the 2009 Remasters? They were reissuing the work they considered they should be judged on as a band, collecting it all together in a box, and they could easily have added both tracks under discussion to Past Masters . They chose not to, and so they obviously feel that they are somewhat separate to what they did when they were an active band.

And before the suggestion is made that the Remasters was to collect together only the material they had issued in that decade, Mono Masters added five mono mixes that were prepared at the time but never issued. They were prepared to add some things that were not released at the time, but they did not themselves consider that FaaB and RL should be added to their core catalogue/canon.

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12 July 2015
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Wigwam said
'Whether one liked a song or not is immaterial as all four still didn't say no to its inclusion.'

 

So whether John liked or disliked FAAB is immaterial if the other three were happy?

Its not if they like it or not, John disliked some of Pauls stuff that was released in the Beatles catalogue its that they approved its inclusion on the record at the time; for example John, George and Ringo came to detest 'Maxwell's Silver Hammer ' but its on 'Abbey Road ' as all agreed to it and no one is saying that's not part of the canon.

If Paul, George and Ringo said they were happy and John was not they would have either not have issued it (see all the tracks they recorded together but didnt release), compromised in some way, or kept working on it till all were.

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

12 July 2015
10.10am
Wigwam
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Killer er?

They appeared on the first two Beatles Anthology albums.......They were given in fact pride of place. Considered significant enough works in themselves to garner interest from the fans.....(Some of which they must have been aware could be very picky and to be fair protective) Offering us something new and of quality. Most of all songs that they were proud of and could stand by.......And label,  'By The Beatles.'

They didn't call themselves Threetles.....They didn't put these songs out as 'The Fabs' on a wild life charity album......They put them on the most significant Beatles albums since they had broken-up.

They used the name Beatles knowing what that means in terms of their past and future reputations .....

 

Now the thing is we see this differently.

But I know you and MMM love The buggars as much as I do......However, I'm a stubborn sod and won't ever quit......Hopefully neither will Federer.

Over to you.

12 July 2015
10.17am
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And no one (well no one here) is saying neither track is not the Beatles.

I know some people wont accept either are anywhere close to a Beatles recording on the basis that John was dead at the time of the recording. I also have read how a few people argue that 'Love' isnt a Beatles album as it was all remixed and whatever; i have no idea where that comes from and have no desire to go into it all.

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12 July 2015
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I'm not one of The Beatles. I'm just me. I pick my canon. They picked theirs.

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