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"Only A Northern Song"

Categories: Beatles songs

As it was "Only A Northern Song", which George Harrison didn't have copyright for,

it doesn't really matter...

It did, of course: The Beatles never exactly had a reputation for turning out sub-standard merchandise ('scuse the pun), whatever the motive. And, being recorded in the midst of the Sgt Pepper sessions, it clearly received the same level of meticulous attention as anything else from that particular project.

George also observed that the song was a bit of a joke about the Holy City of Liverpool so, in a way, it forms an extension to the "Penny Lane"/"Strawberry Fields" theme. Ringo, of course, had had the honour of being the first Fab to sing about 'the town where they was born', on "Yellow Submarine".

Though curtailed in the movie, the animators did a fine job in capturing the mood.

"Dark" it most certainly is: quite disturbing, with George affecting his drollest Liverpudlian monotone alongside the spooky Hammond, accompanied by all manner of billowing dissonance.

You may think the chords are going wrong
— But they're not,
He just wrote it like that.


Paul playing the trumpet was clearly a deliberate ploy to have it "not quite right". His seductive little bassline, on the other hand, is immaculate.

On guitar, "there's nobody there". Ringo drumming and John on piano and glockenspiel "just play it like that" — and godknows how many yards of tape loops they fed through it all.

It doesn't really matter...
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