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Song fragments that really grab you
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2 August 2013
4.25am
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Funny Paper
America
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I like it when a singer varies one part of a repeated melody in a song.  It also matters, of course, if that variation is cool.

Example: Lennon in Glass Onion has three repeated melodic phrases, and on the third time near the very end at the culmination of the song, he varies the melody in a cool way.

The first instance of the repeated melody is the last phrase of each stanza:

"...Where everything flows"

Next one is:

"...The walrus was Paul"

Then (after an instrumental interlude) when it comes up again, instead of singing in the same melody, he sings notes that start higher then stairstep down with:

"...Listen to me"

The melody he chose to use for that specific variation is very cool, and only certain musicians would think of it.

Faded flowers, wait in a jar, till the evening is complete... complete... complete... complete...
2 August 2013
6.33pm
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Into the Sky with Diamonds
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Good point - any other songs featuring little melodic changes?

"Into the Sky with Diamonds" (the Beatles and the Race to the Moon – a history)
2 August 2013
9.08pm
Ben Ramon
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One I can think of: Paul singing "and though she feels as if she's in a pla-a-a-ay" in Penny Lane, a slightly sadder melodic twist to the existential plight of the pretty nurse selling poppies.

 

 

SHUT UP - Paulie's talkin'
3 August 2013
12.51am
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In My Broken Chair
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The "WooOoo!" after "When you told me" in Oh! Darling.

The final few sitar (Swarmandal?) notes before the third verse of Within You Without You.

The tea sound effects during the third verse of Cry Baby Cry.

The way John sings, "I tried to telephone, They said you were not home, That's a lie." in No Reply.

And of course, "Take this, brother: may it serve you well."

3 August 2013
3.00am
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Funny Paper
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Ben Ramon said
One I can think of: Paul singing "and though she feels as if she's in a pla-a-a-ay" in Penny Lane, a slightly sadder melodic twist to the existential plight of the pretty nurse selling poppies.

Yes, big time.  Paul of course also does this a lot.

Faded flowers, wait in a jar, till the evening is complete... complete... complete... complete...
3 August 2013
10.42am
Ben Ramon
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9 said
The "WooOoo!" after "When you told me" in Oh! Darling.

In that spirit, how about the first time the "when you told me" part first comes in? Is that not just the most thrillingly powerful sound you've ever heard a human voice make? The song's already pretty intense with its tottering Fifties swamp sound but then suddenly at that moment the song kicks up a notch and it's like it's being sung directly into your ear by the Old Testament God. I know a lot of people think Paul's vocals in Oh! Darling are a bit over the top but they blow me away.

 

SHUT UP - Paulie's talkin'
4 August 2013
4.12pm
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Linde
The Netherlands
Rishikesh
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His vocals in Oh! Darling are awesome. I don't love the song, don't hate it either, but his vocals..maaaaan!

6 August 2013
2.07pm
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fabfouremily
Sitting in an English garden
Rishikesh
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He's just so... sexy! I absolutely love Oh!Darling because of the pure effort he puts into getting his frustration and pain (?) across.

Moving along in our God given ways, safety is sat by the fire/Sanctuary from these feverish smiles, left with a mark on the door.

(Passover - I. Curtis)

7 August 2013
2.22am
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Funny Paper
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As much as I love Paul's "Oh Darling", I can't help notice it seems he's holding back.  He seems incapable of really expressing any pain that would compromise (or seem to compromise) his vocal talent.  I.e, form above substance.  (Personally, I like that).

It's sort of analogous to certain actors who are willing to do something unflattering for the sake of the art and the role: example, Jack Nicholson in "In Terms of Endearment", playing an aging retired astronaut who is trying to attract his new neighbor, a recent divorcee, played by the somewhat younger and quite attractive Shirley MacLaine.  Nicholson at one point has just been swimming in his pool and he decides he's going to be brave and risk confronting MacLaine with his romantic feelings, which he hasn't told her yet.  He goes straight from his pool, marches across the yard to her house, goes in and upstairs to her bedroom.  He opens the door wide, standing in his swim trunks sopping wet, his balding hair a mess, and his stomach hanging out like a blimp.  According to MacLaine, Nicholson chose to do that for the scene himself.  She remarked that few actors would be so brave as to show their ugly side just to make a scene better.

While early on John was singing more by the numbers, as the years went on, he took more dares and used his vocal imperfections as part of the effect (faintly reminiscent of Dylan).  Paul HAS no imperfections.  That's his "problem".

 

Faded flowers, wait in a jar, till the evening is complete... complete... complete... complete...
7 August 2013
2.31am
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meanmistermustard
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Have preferred the A3 GB version with John and Paul duetting since first hearing, have always felt Paul was trying a little too much with his vocal on AR.

"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)

7 August 2013
11.11pm
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Linde
The Netherlands
Rishikesh
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I think Funny Paper has a good point here. The cracks and things like that in John's voice sometimes make the pain come across a lot better. Paul never has cracks or goes wrong with his voice. He knows how to bring over his love for things, but when he sings about something that's supposed to hurt, it often comes across as..not very genuine. Not saying Paul doesn't have a beautiful voice, it's just that sometimes something can be TOO perfect.

That doesn't mean one has to sing really false and bad to show emotions though.

8 August 2013
9.58am
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Gerard
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Linde said
I think Funny Paper has a good point here. The cracks and things like that in John's voice sometimes make the pain come across a lot better. Paul never has cracks or goes wrong with his voice. He knows how to bring over his love for things, but when he sings about something that's supposed to hurt, it often comes across as..not very genuine. Not saying Paul doesn't have a beautiful voice, it's just that sometimes something can be TOO perfect.

That doesn't mean one has to sing really false and bad to show emotions though.

Paul allows his voice to crack now when he's playing LIVE. I forgot what songs they are though.

8 August 2013
4.57pm
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Linde
The Netherlands
Rishikesh
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But now he's old so his voice will crack naturally sometimes. THAT DOESN'T COUNT EH?! Just kidding.

Oh, have I mentioned the bass in Old Brown Shoe yet? Specifically talking about the..what's it, the bridge? The ''if I grow up I'll be a singer'' part and the part after that?

9 August 2013
1.26am
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Into the Sky with Diamonds
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I disagree with the points made about Lennon showing more emotion, etc... Perhaps that's true. But I listen to music for enjoyment not psychoanalysis. I like melody, harmony, arrangements, lyrics along with great instrumental and vocal performances. To me, "Oh Darling!" reflects FABulous singing. Whether it reflects true passion or not I'll let others decide. Conversely, although I can appreciate the therapeutic effects that "primal scream" type of singing might have had on Lennon, to me very often, quite honestly, that type of singing is grating and borderline unenjoyable. But hey, there's a lot of room under the tent.

"Into the Sky with Diamonds" (the Beatles and the Race to the Moon – a history)
9 August 2013
1.27am
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Into the Sky with Diamonds
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Linde said, "have I mentioned the bass in Old Brown Shoe yet? Specifically talking about the..what's it, the bridge? The ''if I grow up I'll be a singer'' part and the part after that?"

Yeah - who's playing that bass?

"Into the Sky with Diamonds" (the Beatles and the Race to the Moon – a history)
9 August 2013
1.49pm
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Gerard
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That bass wouldn't come out from a Hofner that's for sure it has to be from a newer bass. 

In "If I Fell" I remember that the stereo version, Paul cracks his voice in the line "in vain".

9 August 2013
7.08pm
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Linde
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Rishikesh
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I believe George played the bass on Old Brown Shoe. Or was that the one of which it was a huge mystery with a lot of arguments about who played the bass?

9 August 2013
10.42pm
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meanmistermustard
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Its open for debate. Some yell George, others scream Paul.

"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)

16 August 2013
12.55am
joneo
A Beginning
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On Golden Slumbers when Paul sings "smiles AWAKE you when you rise". Blows my mind every time!

19 August 2013
8.47pm
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fabfouremily
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In 'Like Dreamers Do', the way Paul says ''yeah'' in that oh-so-sexy voice. Aaahhh....

Moving along in our God given ways, safety is sat by the fire/Sanctuary from these feverish smiles, left with a mark on the door.

(Passover - I. Curtis)

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