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"Good Night"

Categories: Beatles songs

Ringo recording his vocals for "Good Night" from the Beatles' White Album, EMI Studios 1968
...And, cue strings.

"Good Night", despite having been recorded during the first month of White sessions, simply had to be the double's closing number, didn't it now? Coming as it does, directly after Rev 9, it's also an amazing indication of just how diverse John was as a composer.

The superlush arrangement — featuring a 26-piece orchestra, George Martin on celeste, and the Mike Sammes Singers — was deliberately "real cheesy", at Lennon's own request. Originally written as a lullaby for Julian, Paul (who would've been perfectly justified in using John's granny shit rating against him this time) has suggested that the vocal was given to Ringo because "John felt it might not be good for his image for him to sing it..."

Perhaps his feelings of guilt at having abandoned his son altogether were also a factor. Nevertheless, he did apparently sing it in the studio to teach it to his chosen stand-in — though, sadly, it was never recorded. It would be interesting to compare it with "Beautiful Boy", his later berceuse for baby Sean.

Uncle Rings did a lovely job, anyway, even if he reckons he did sound "a bit nervous". The sweetness and warmth he instilled into it were a big departure from his typical country-rock fodder: I wonder whether he got into practice while he tucked up little Zak and Jason at home?

Good night...
Good night, everybody...
Everybody, everywhere...
Good night.
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