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Music and Romance - The Beatles and beyond
2 August 2016
7.59pm
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sigh butterfly
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I was thinking the other day about how music helps people to find themselves. What kind of music attracts you and excites you says a lot about who you really are inside. I remember when I was a teenager The Beatles music playing a big part in my self-discovery. One particular aspect of that was learning about and experiencing romantic feelings. Initially this was done through dance and there was none better than The Beatles for this. The first dances I went to did not really involve couples. It was more like groups of people dancing. As the evening would go on there was an appearance of couple-like dancing but no real overt intentions. The Beatles were always a great catalyst as it was something everyone agreed was great, plus you were kind of expected to let loose. Twist And Shout was the king of the dance floor and could even get the shyest person on their feet and at least swaying back and forth (maybe it still can). This was how most teenagers experienced their first social interaction in the mid-60s. Something I forgot to mention, in these middle school settings there was absolutely no touching of any kind allowed (not even holding hands).

By the end of middle school the big thing was parties at people’s houses. These weren’t parties for any particular reason except to listen to music. By now people were comfortable asking each other to dance. What was new was the slow-dancing that occurred as soon as the parents were out of the room. Early on there was a bit of a ritual to this. You would start by asking someone to dance to a faster song that everyone was digging. I remember in particular I Should of Known Better was a favorite that was easy to dance to. The next song on the album is If I Fell . Some people would move away quickly when they heard a slow song come on. But if you were prepared you could roll into it with a slight gesture (shoulder or hand - whatever) and next thing you know you’d be in each other’s arms. This would be a little awkward if you were the only couple dancing but that usually wasn’t the case. Even if the lyrics had nothing to do with any sort of relationship with your partner you couldn’t help but feel the emotion of “If I give my heart to you”, “I hope you see that I would love to love you”, and “If I feel in love with you”. I remember the music becoming almost intoxicating under those circumstances. The next song on the US album is And I Love Her but those lyrics were too overt. The touching was too new and fragile to take things beyond the casual scenario.

Does this all sound long ago and far away or is music still involved in these types of matters?

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Beatlebug, O Boogie, ewe2, WeepingAtlasCedars, SgtPeppersBulldog

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2 August 2016
8.20pm
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Beatlebug
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sigh butterfly aptly did quote 
I was thinking the other day about how music helps people to find themselves. What kind of music attracts you and excites you says a lot about who you really are inside. 

Absolutely! Music is deeply personal and both the music and the people involved in making it can be quite an influence on what you think about yourself and others. (The Beatles will ruin our youth, you know. a-hard-days-night-george-10) Once you fall in love with a song, and you've heard it enough times, it becomes yours-- it's programmed into your DNA. As a wise Beatle once said, 'Music is everyone's possession-- it's just music publishers who think people own it.' 

I can think of several friends whom I've gotten to know through music, and music is mainly what we talk about, and through talking about it, discover each other. Shared love of music, and sharing your particular tastes, is a very special way to bond with another human being. 

Does this all sound long ago and far away or is music still involved in these types of matters?  

I've not had what people call a 'typical high school experience', so it does sound far away to me, but I imagine it is so for most teenagers. I don't think it's quite as unanimous and/or awesome as the Beatles, though. a-hard-days-night-paul-7

Beatles is fabulous dance music, though; I can attest to that. I probably wouldn't dance at all but for the Fabs-- they made it sound and look like such fun in I Saw Her Standing There and the AHDN film, and I was always tapping my feet to the music, so one day when All My Loving came on I got down and cut the rug. a-hard-days-night-ringo-10

The rug hasn't gotten time to recover since! a-hard-days-night-george-9 

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3 August 2016
5.30am
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ewe2
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When I was 11 my dad was friends with a nearby couple and the lady was Liverpudlian so of course she was a mad Beatles fan, but she was an early period fan. It's funny how it took me such a long time to connect those Beatles with the later Beatles, but the chief memory here is that she loved to dance to those songs and encouraged us kids (my younger brother and sister and I) to dance too. I confess that at the time I thought I'll Get You and Do You Want To Know A Secret were the naughtiest songs because I had a bit of a crush on her, she was a very nice pretty lady who was heaps of fun. But the fun and generosity of those songs never left me and even I had a dim sense of their glamour if this lady 5 years later was any guide (this was the mid-70's, I'm old).

The Beatles didn't figure in my teenage years and early 20's but the bands that did, definitely figured as did dancing and awkwardness, nothing changed there. a-hard-days-night-paul-7 There's a reason why boys want to be rock stars, because girls will pay attention to them! And when you're young and awkward, music says what you can't, doesn't matter what you want to say or what the music is. The Beatles are still excellent guides in my humble opinion and should be mandatory at school dances. Even the one where my principal tried to dance to Devo. a-hard-days-night-ringo-13

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3 August 2016
10.29am
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sir walter raleigh
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Its a shame, my high school parties are not like that. Of all the times I went over the past year, and I did not hear a single Beatles track. With that being said, the music being played is meant to excite people and get them dancing, only with less class and more computer sounds. At smaller gatherings however, my friends have been suffenciently turned on to the beatles (by me), so we listen to the fab four and talk about the history and quality of the music. 

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"The pump don't work cause the vandals took the handles!"

-Bob Dylan, Subterranean Homesick Blues

"We could ride and surf together while our love would grow"

-Brian Wilson, Surfer Girl

4 August 2016
12.23am
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Ahhh Girl
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sir walter raleigh said
Its a shame, my high school parties are not like that. Of all the times I went over the past year, and I did not hear a single Beatles track. With that being said, the music being played is meant to excite people and get them dancing, only with less class and more computer sounds. At smaller gatherings however, my friends have been suffenciently turned on to the beatles (by me), so we listen to the fab four and talk about the history and quality of the music.   

Good work, Sir. A Beatles Ambassador you are.

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sigh butterfly
5 August 2016
3.57pm
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sigh butterfly
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Yes beatlebug, you must be right about music intertwining with your DNA. I spent a summer at a place called the Russian River when I was around 10. My most vivid memory of that time is of a teenage girl singing along with Roll Over Beethoven  and at the end screaming "Dig these rhythm and blues!" as she jumped into the lake. So...to try to keep this theme of sorts going, it was 50 years ago this week that I came home with my copy of the album Revolver . My bedroom was downstairs and faced the front of the house. There was large walnut tree in the yard and a porch swing right outside my window. It was hot that day so I put the album on and sat outside to listen and stare at the cover for possible hidden meanings. My second time through Revolver I saw a girl I didn’t recognize walking down my street. Has she walked by she stopped for a second and then blurted out "You've got the new record already!?!". She immediately came bounding up and introduced herself as Linda and asked to see the album cover. I’d left it on my bed when I turned the record over, so I went back in to get it. As I opened the front door I realized she was following me into my bedroom. She sat on my bed and started staring intently at the drawing and saying things like “I can’t believe this” in low voice. As it turned out she was only a month older than me but as is with most early teenagers, girls seem to move on from childhood much quicker. Also her musical ear was way past mine as well and she appreciated the composition of the song first, while I was more in tune with the singing and lyrics. Anyway that was my very first experience with Revolver and though new associations have been added over time, that hot day discussing music with Linda is forever the foundation. We became friends and even put together a little show for talent night at the neighborhood Cabana club. She loved the song The Word so we lip-synced a whole little routine.

Me: Say the word and you’ll be free

Her: Say the word and be like me

Me: Say the word I’m thinking of

Her: Have you heard the word is love?

Us: It’s so fine, it’s sunshine, it’s the word LOVE

heart

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11 April 2018
8.03pm
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sigh butterfly
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ewe2 said
When I was 11 my dad was friends with a nearby couple and the lady was Liverpudlian so of course she was a mad Beatles fan, but she was an early period fan. It's funny how it took me such a long time to connect those Beatles with the later Beatles, but the chief memory here is that she loved to dance to those songs and encouraged us kids (my younger brother and sister and I) to dance too. I confess that at the time I thought I'll Get You and Do You Want To Know A Secret were the naughtiest songs because I had a bit of a crush on her, she was a very nice pretty lady who was heaps of fun. But the fun and generosity of those songs never left me and even I had a dim sense of their glamour if this lady 5 years later was any guide (this was the mid-70's, I'm old).

 @ewe2 I had a similar experience around that age involving my Aunt Ingrid. She was a blond Swedish woman who married my Dad's younger brother. I'm not sure how to exactly describe her train of thought, but more often than not she would answer the door wearing a bikini. I suppose we took it as having to do with her European heritage, but now I think about it that doesn't make any sense a-hard-days-night-paul-7She and my uncle liked to throw cocktail parties and at one I remember very vividly she taught everyone how to twist including us kids. It may be the first time I ever danced and I can definitely relate to how you describe your emotions from that similar time. If nothing else it opened up a whole new way to listen to music and really rock out pattie-boyd_02_gif

So to continue on with the thread, sometime in the summer before 9th grade I was invited to a party by a girl I knew from school. I assumed this was a normal listen to records and dance kind of thing, but when I got there something seemed off. There was a mix of boys and girls (some I didn't know) but everyone seemed to have this goofy grin on their face. There was loud music playing but nobody was dancing. Someone asked me if I wanted to play a game and I said sure. Everyone got in a straight line in girl-boy order and I took my place at the end behind the last girl. The first girl in the line turned, smiled, and kissed the boy behind her. He then turned and kissed the girl behind him and so on. Some of the kisses were longer than others and it took a while for my turn. Finally the last girl turned and I kind of nervously puckered and she slapped me hard across the face. I realized everyone was watching and laughing but before I could say anything someone said "Now you are initiated, welcome to the party". This scenario was replayed a few times until all of the invited boys were there. It sounds cruel now but at the time it was sort of an ice breaker in that the girls had discussed this all before hand, so it was a sign of acceptance for us newbies. My 24 year old daughter tells me that "no one wants to hear about your perverted 60s social activities" so I won't go into detail.  These parties lasted for off and on for about 6 months until people started pairing off into couples and then it became too uncomfortable to play kissing games. The Beatles were part of these parties and the US version of Rubber Soul was perfect with lots of songs about love and even a final song to take a break. But being 1967 the music was changing and Sgt. Pepper wasn't really that great for making out to. It's hard to describe the exact emotions at play, but at a certain point in the 60s you just had to give the music your full uninterrupted attention   a-hard-days-night-john-1a-hard-days-night-paul-4ahdn_george_01a-hard-days-night-ringo-10

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12 April 2018
12.31am
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ewe2
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sigh butterfly said
My 24 year old daughter tells me that "no one wants to hear about your perverted 60s social activities" so I won't go into detail.  

Hahaha, plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose. I'm a bit jealous I never got to go to those kinds of parties. It's an important point that applies to all musical cultures that these associations get forgotten generations on. I'm sure there were naughty classical music parties too - if Mozart kept a fart diary, things were probably a lot wilder than historians let on. We know how daring early jazz and blues were (it's actually difficult to find the dirty versions of jazz standards now, but they were a lot dirtier than rock and roll), and it's easy to forget that one of the key Beatles messages was it's ok to feel like this

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I'm like Necko only I'm a bassist ukulele guitar synthesizer kazoo penguin and also everyone. Or is everyone me? Now I'm a confused bassist ukulele guitar synthesizer kazoo penguin everyone who is definitely not @Joe.  This has been true for 2016 & 2017 Sig-Badge.png but I may have to get more specific in the future.

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