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The Continuing Story Of Bungalow Bill
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3 December 2014
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Joe
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The Beatles (White Album) artwork

Written by: Lennon-McCartney
Recorded: 8 October 1968
Producer: George Martin
Engineer: Ken Scott

Released: 22 November 1968 (UK), 25 November 1968 (US)

John Lennon: vocals, acoustic guitar, organ
Paul McCartney: backing vocals, bass
George Harrison: backing vocals, acoustic guitar
Ringo Starr: backing vocals, drums, tambourine
Yoko Ono: vocals, backing vocals
Chris Thomas: Mellotron
Various others,…

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6 March 2016
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ewe2
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A year and no one's commented paul-mccartney

This is one of my favourites from the White Album. On the surface it's a funny cartoonish singalong about a dumb hunter and his elephants. Based as it is on a real incident, it's really about a mummy's boy who does what he likes without consequences and little introspection. The excuse that it was kill or be killed with the tiger doesn't explain the necessity of being in the tiger's domain for example, and in any case Captain Marvel will swoop in and save the day. I didn't know about the real Bill at first and mused for years that perhaps it was a general comment on American foreign policy or culture. Interesting too how this song continues the subject matter of shooting and killing on the album generally.

A related note: I'm not sure where the phrase "all the children sing" originates but I'm almost sure that Todd Rundgren, arch Beatle fan that he is, might have been influenced to name a song after that phrase because of Bungalow Bill. Mr Malloy sounds very Bill-like. a-hard-days-night-john-1

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6 March 2016
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I was the walrus
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This is one of those songs that get your head moving back and forth like a camp fire song.  Classic piece of work. 

6 March 2016
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Ahhh Girl
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So, did Captain Marvel zap the tiger right between the eyes? All this time I've been trying to understand why CM zapped Bungalow Bill. All I could come up with was that the "zapping" magically removed him from the situation/teleported him to safety. I guess I thought if CM had zapped the tiger the lyric would say "it" instead of "him".

6 March 2016
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meanmistermustard
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If Captain Marvel did the zapping and killed the tiger why do the children sing asking Bungalow Bill what he killed? Unless Captain Marvel is Bungalow Bill, some kind of superhero synonym, but everyone would have to know. Maybe the children are actually mocking Bill because he killed nothing and his mother was protecting him.

Anyway, i've never cared for the song and would be one of the first to be thrown out if the album was trimmed to a single disc. The only part I like is the fade out when the whistling begins, folk clap, the mellotron meanders to a stop and John shouts "Hey Up!", the rest is bordering on garbage.

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6 March 2016
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Bongo
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I was the walrus said
This is one of those songs that get your head moving back and forth like a camp fire song.  Classic piece of work. 

I agree, I love this song! Not sure how any Beatles fan could hate it.a-hard-days-night-paul-11

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

6 March 2016
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meanmistermustard
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Uninteresting vocals, uninteresting musicianship (until the end), dull uninteresting story. Falls flat for me.

"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)

6 March 2016
6.52pm
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Evangeline
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It's an awful song,  I'd rather listen to "Julia" 20 times than listen to TCSOBB. 

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6 March 2016
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I like it.

Evangeline said
It's an awful song,  I'd rather listen to "Julia" 20 times than listen to TCSOBB. 

listening to Julia is like listening to nothing.

https://youtu.be/52nwiTs7bk8

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6 March 2016
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Silly Girl
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Evangeline griped 
It's an awful song,  I'd rather listen to "Julia" 20 times than listen to TCSOBB. 

I don't think it's awful, but I would rather listen to Julia 20 times because I really really love Julia, whereas I amn't very keen on Bungalow Bill. 

a-hard-days-night-paul-11 

Cloudless every day you fall upon my waking eyes, inviting and inciting me to rise

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7 March 2016
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Tough one for me; 'Julia' or 'The Continuing Story Of Bungalow Bill'.

Julia is actually shorter in song length yet feels so long when listened to. Both are dull.

"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 March 2016
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Mademoiselle Kitty >^..^<
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I prefer Julia over The Continuing Story Of Bungalow Bill, as well. I usually skip Bungalow Bill, to be honest. 

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7 March 2016
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Little Piggy Dragonguy
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I love The Continuing Story Of Bungalow Bill and would gladly play it on repeat for an hour

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16 December 2016
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Pineapple Records
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Many things I love about this song, but just three I'll mention now:

1. Using Yoko to sing along, sounding like a cute little urchin.

2. The chord sequence for the chorus, "Hey, Bungalow Bill, what did you kill..." etc. especially at the end when it continues repeating until the end:  Very interesting chord changes, traversing two levels, the second level sounding like a key change, and (here's the kicker) when it goes back to the first level to repeat, it sounds like it's ascending to a new key change -- but ingeniously, it's not!

3. The couple of times John calls out, "All the children sing!" -- not only is his inflection nicely cheeky and snarky, but the rhythm in which he says it both times is very cool in being, or seeming, out of synch with the prevailing tempo -- and the second time he subtly varies it such that the word "sing" lands right on the up beat (or the down beat).

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A ginger sling with a pineapple heart,

a coffee dessert, yes you know it's good news...

18 December 2016
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ewe2
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Pineapple Records said
2. The chord sequence for the chorus, "Hey, Bungalow Bill, what did you kill..." etc. especially at the end when it continues repeating until the end:  Very interesting chord changes, traversing two levels, the second level sounding like a key change, and (here's the kicker) when it goes back to the first level to repeat, it sounds like it's ascending to a new key change -- but ingeniously, it's not!

Well the two "levels" are sets of chords modulating between keys, so it IS a key change. What helps with that effect is that the bass backs up the way the melody tumbles down between the modulation and not following a classical harmony. Its the sort of thing I like about the Beatles music instincts.

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21 December 2016
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ewe2 said

Pineapple Records said
2. The chord sequence for the chorus, "Hey, Bungalow Bill, what did you kill..." etc. especially at the end when it continues repeating until the end:  Very interesting chord changes, traversing two levels, the second level sounding like a key change, and (here's the kicker) when it goes back to the first level to repeat, it sounds like it's ascending to a new key change -- but ingeniously, it's not!

Well the two "levels" are sets of chords modulating between keys, so it IS a key change. What helps with that effect is that the bass backs up the way the melody tumbles down between the modulation and not following a classical harmony. Its the sort of thing I like about the Beatles music instincts.  

Yes I know the second level is a key change from the first, but when it goes back to the first, it sounds like it's going up to a new key change rather than looping back.

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27 September 2017
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sir walter raleigh
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Does anybody know who plays the acoustic guitar riff at the beginning?

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27 September 2017
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sir walter raleigh said
Does anybody know who plays the acoustic guitar riff at the beginning?  

From Joe's song entry

The Spanish guitar introduction, as noted by Mark Lewisohn in The Complete Beatles Recording Sessions, was recorded separately and later edited onto the song. It is likely that this took place during The Beatles' only 24-hour session, spread over 16 and 17 October, during which a number of edit pieces and crossfades for the White Album were finalised.

The guitar flourish was one of a number of seven-second instrument samples included on the Mellotron Mark II. The identity of the guitarist is said to have been Eric Cook, an Australian session musician, although this is unconfirmed.

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27 September 2017
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I don't mind this song but I can see why some people might not like it. I like that it is playful and it sounds like they were having fun while recording it. 

That being said I feel that this song was only released because it was on a double album and probably wouldn't have seen the light of day if it was a single album.

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28 September 2017
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vonbontee
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meanmistermustard said
If Captain Marvel did the zapping and killed the tiger why do the children sing asking Bungalow Bill what he killed? Unless Captain Marvel is Bungalow Bill, some kind of superhero synonym, but everyone would have to know.

To the extent that I've thought about it, I've always assumed that CM was indeed Bill himself, that the narrator is being contemptuous about how the cowardly Bill feels like a big man when he's got his gun, and so the "Captain Marvel" appellation is sarcasm.

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