My favorite covers of Beatles songs

I know it’s not just me saying this, but the Beatles are probably the most popular band of all time. So it’s no wonder that they are also by far the most covered band of all time, with Yesterday and Something as their most covered songs. I enjoy listening to a good Beatle cover because it’s interesting to see how different artists interpret Beatles songs, so today I’ll post some of my favorite Beatle covers. Some strip the song down to just vocals and an acoustic guitar and some add so much orchestration that it barely resembles the original song, but both methods of covering are equally valid and equally meaningful. I hope you enjoy!

Gavin Degraw- And I Love Her

I’ve just recently started listening to Gavin Degraw, and I think it’s safe to say that I’m in completely love with him and his beautiful, heartfelt, authentic music. I might do a post about him in the near future, so I’ll say more then, but here I’ll just say that his voice on this cover and in general makes me melt inside. 🙂

Elton John- Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds

This is one of the more famous Beatle covers out there, and it’s also the only one to ever hit #1 on the charts. In typically fabulous Elton John fashion, he took an already brilliant Beatles song and added layers of vocals and orchestration to turn it into something completely different. I still prefer the original song, but I will admit that this cover is ALMOST as good as the original.

Green Day- Working Class Hero

So technically this is a John Lennon solo song and not a Beatles song, but I love this cover so much that I had to include it in this list. Green Day rocks, and this cover is just brilliant. It’s hard to top John Lennon on one of his own songs, but I think they almost do it here.

Gregg Allman- Rain

I first heard this version on Breakfast with the Beatles one Sunday, and I could not believe my ears. This sounds almost nothing like the original Beatles song, but it’s so soulful and beautiful that I can’t help but sway and nod my head whenever I hear it. Gregg Allman’s voice perfectly epitomizes rock, gospel, and soul combined.

Emmylou Harris- Here, There, and Everywhere

This cover is absolutely stunning. I love how minimal the instrumentation is because it really helps showcase the amazing song and her beautiful voice.

Paul McCartney and Eric Clapton- Something

It’s kind of hard to call this a cover because Something is technically a Beatles song, and Paul was technically a Beatle. But, since George wrote it and the original song has neither a ukulele intro nor an Eric Clapton, I’m including it here. My favorite part of this is the bridge starting at 3:12. The harmonies there are just outstanding! Two rock gods at their finest, while paying tribute to another.

I hope you check out one, a few, or all of these covers because they’re all worthwhile versions done by worthwhile musicians. Next week, I’ll get off the Beatle train for a bit to review Foster the People’s new album (their first in 3 years!!!), which comes out on Tuesday. Other than that, I’m not quite sure what else I’ll be posting over the next few weeks, so stick around and it may show. 🙂
Have a wonderful week!

John vs. John: The Ultimate Showdown

John Lennon

John Lennon

John, Elton

John, Elton

Yes, I’ve decided to do another “Ultimate Showdown” post! This one features two of my all-time favorite singers, John Lennon and Elton John. Since this showdown doesn’t involve George Harrison, I think it will be a pretty close matchup, and I can’t wait to compare these two awesome guys in multiple categories! As before, the categories I will be comparing them in are as follows: sense of humor, acting ability, singing ability, overall charm, sense of style, looks, and personality. Here we go!

Sense of humor: I see already that this will be a VERY tight race! On one hand, I think Elton is a really funny guy, and he must have a good sense of humor to have worn all those crazy outfits back in the 70s and 80s! In interviews of him that I’ve seen, he is never afraid to say something in a funny voice or make a joke, and I love that! On the other hand, I consider John Lennon to be the funniest Beatle. His dry, sarcastic, witty sense of humor really resonates with me, and his funny dances and faces that he did onstage and off with the Beatles always crack me up. This is tough, but I’m going to give this round to John. Lennon, that is.
John Lennon: 1
Elton John: 0

Acting ability: Once again, these two are pretty evenly matched in this category. Both of them have had featured roles in movies, Elton as the Pinball Wizard in “Tommy” and John as Private Gripweed in “How I Won The War” and himself in the Beatle movies. I haven’t actually seen How I Won The War, although I plan on watching it eventually, but I have seen Tommy, and I have to say that Elton was fantastic in his one scene in the movie. But, since I don’t think I have enough to judge them both fairly on in this category, I’m calling it a draw.
John Lennon: 2
Elton John: 1

Singing ability: John and Elton’s singing voices and styles are very different, which makes this a tough call. I really love John’s awesome rocking vocals from the early Beatle days on songs like “Rock and Roll Music”, as well as his softer vocals on songs like “Julia”. He certainly had a very versatile voice and his singing was extremely honest and heartfelt. However, on vocal ability alone, I think Elton edges him out. Although he still sounds great, before he had the vocal surgery in the 80s, Elton had the voice of an angel. I love watching videos of him from the 70s when he was hitting all of the high notes with ease and clarity, and I think he’ll go down as one of the greatest singers of all time. For that reason, he wins this category.
John Lennon: 2
Elton John: 2

Overall charm: I love John Lennon, but when I think of him, “charming” isn’t the first word that comes to mind. He was funny, witty, insightful, passionate, goofy, and definitely sexy. But charming? I’m not sure. So, Elton wins this category by default, although I do think that as a 23 year old on the verge of superstardom back in 1970-1971, he was quite the charmer.
John Lennon: 2
Elton John: 3

Sense of style: This is the least close out of all the categories. Why? Because nobody challenges Elton John’s outrageously fabulous sense of style. Nobody.
John Lennon: 2
Elton John: 4

Looks: I have a pretty good idea of this one as well. While I don’t think that John Lennon was the most attractive Beatle, I do think that with a moptop back in the mid-60s, he was really cute, especially in 1966. But, he loses the appeal for me somewhat with the long haired, bearded, glasses-clad look he sported throughout the 70s. However, while his looks have definitely faded a bit over time, I think that Elton in his prime was better looking. Still, it could really go either way.
John Lennon: 2
Elton John: 5
By the way, if you have any doubts about Elton John’s attractiveness, watch this video. He is gorgeous in this!

Personality: While I love both John and Elton’s personalities, I think that John wins this one. He is one of those people that everyone is fascinated by, and he was such a complicated and at times misunderstood man. He is one of those people that I want to learn as much as I can about because he’s so cool and interesting. I’m not saying that Elton isn’t an interesting guy, but I’m just slightly more curious about John as a person than him, and that’s why John wins this category.

The Final Tally:
John Lennon: 3
Elton John: 5

Yay Elton! You truly are Captain Fantastic to me!

Yay Elton! You truly are Captain Fantastic to me!

There you have it. This was a pretty even matchup, but Elton beat out John in the end. I may give John another chance in a future matchup with Ringo, but for now, Elton is the winner!
I hope you enjoyed this post! Have a wonderful week!

Summertime = Shirtless Beatle Time!

Nothing to get you in the summer mood than shirtless Beatles in the pool!

Nothing to get you in the summer mood than shirtless Beatles in the pool!

It’s Memorial Day, the unofficial start to the summer season. Summer is a time for no school, ice cream, lazy days, and going to the beach, but it’s also the time for Googling pictures of shirtless Beatles! There are many of these pictures floating around the internet, whether they feature one Beatle, all four Beatles, Beatles by the pool, Beatles on the beach… You name it, it exists!
Now, I’m not going to get too descriptive, but in my opinion, shirtless Beatles are a beautiful thing. So sit back, relax, and enjoy some shirtless pictures of the lads that we all know and love!

I can't say much about this one. Observe...

I can’t say much about this one. Observe…

It's kind of awkward how John is the only fully-clothed Beatle in this picture.

It’s kind of awkward how John is the only fully-clothed Beatle in this picture.

You would not believe how many shirtless pictures of Paul there are on the internet...

You would not believe how many shirtless pictures of Paul there are on the internet…

More shirtless Paul

More shirtless Paul

Because everybody loves shirtless George, especially ME!

Because everybody loves shirtless George, especially ME!

Oh my George. Thank you photographer!

Oh my George. Thank you photographer!

I don't even want to know what prompted the poses in this picture...

I don’t even want to know what prompted the poses in this picture…

I gotta say, shirtless Ringo is surprisingly attractive!

I gotta say, shirtless Ringo is surprisingly attractive!

Two more lovely pictures of shirtless George to end the post. Here's the first...

Two more lovely pictures of shirtless George to end the post. Here’s the first…

... And here's the second! Even more Georgeous than the first!

… And here’s the second! Even more Georgeous than the first!

I think this is the most pictures I’ve ever posted in one post before. And these don’t even scratch the surface of the treasure trove that is shirtless Beatle pictures. But I didn’t want to overwhelm everyone’s eyes and brains with too many beautiful pictures all at once, so I’ll stop here.
As if it isn’t painfully obvious after viewing this post, the Beatles look great shirtless, although I think I actually prefer them with suits. Honestly though, they can pull off anything! 🙂
Have a great week!

The Fashionably Fab Four!

A lovely picture of John, Paul, and George to start the post... :)

A lovely picture of John, Paul, and George to start the post… 🙂

I have a few assorted things I’d like to share on this post. First, I thought it was about time that I posted the promos of Revolution and Hey Jude on this blog, for two reasons. One, I’ve decided that Hey Jude/Revolution is my favorite Beatles single, and two, I want to comment on their choice of clothes for these videos. So, here they are… The Beatles singing Hey Jude and Revolution!

Unfortunately, George doesn’t get that much screen time in this video, but from the few brief clips I see of him, I notice that he’s wearing a really nice looking brown silky shirt with a ruffle down the front. I want a shirt like that! He looks great, of course, because he looks gorgeous in everything he wears!
I also like Ringo’s green suit ensemble, but I probably wouldn’t be brave enough to wear an all lime green outfit. However, Ringo can definitely pull it off!

In this video, George is sporting an orange turtleneck which I love, and I’ve been on the lookout for one just like it. Normally, I don’t really like wearing turtlenecks, but George always looked great in them, so maybe I should be more adventurous. And once again, George looks absolutely stunningly gorgeous in this video, especially when he smiles and flips his hair at 0:22. In my opinion, only when you’re the Beatle with the thickest, waviest hair can you get away with flipping it!
Also, I’ve always wondered what possessed Paul to wear that odd tucked-in blue shirt thing he’s wearing here. I’m not quite sure what it is. Is he going for the farmer look, foreshadowing his later days owning a farm in Scotland? I don’t know. He looks cute because he’s Paul, but still… He definitely looked better in THIS outfit!

I don't know why, I just love Paul and his outfit in this picture!

I don’t know why, I just love Paul and his outfit in this picture!

Finally, some lovely pictures from what I think is the best Beatle photo session, the Mad Day Out photo shoot from 1968. All four Beatles look amazing, handsome, and stylish in every photo! Enjoy!

I have a version of this picture in my room, and I look at it lovingly every day!

I have a version of this picture in my room, and I look at it lovingly every day!

George and Paul in this picture = Georgeous and Paul Perfection

George and Paul in this picture = Georgeous and Paul Perfection

I don't even want to know what's transpiring here...

I don’t even want to know what’s transpiring here…

The Beatles, who hope you have enjoyed the show!

The Beatles, who hope you have enjoyed the show!

I’m sorry, but it’s time to go… I’d just like to say that I think George was by far the most fashionable Beatle. Thank you and good night.

My Top 10 Favorite John Lennon Solo Songs

My all time favorite picture of John Lennon!

My all time favorite picture of John Lennon!

I intend to do a solo countdown for each Beatle, and John Lennon’s solo career is next up on my list. Although I’m not as familiar with his solo work as I am with George’s or Paul’s, he has a lot of great songs from his too-short career. I used to not be a big fan of John in general, for some reason, but once I started listening more closely to his solo songs, I began to appreciate him much more. And now we arrive at this countdown! Here we go!

10. Beautiful Boy (Darling Boy)

John wrote this for his son, Sean, back in the late 70s. I can really feel the emotion he puts into this, and he seems so protective and loving of his son. I suppose that he wanted to try again at being a father after his first attempt with Julian in the heyday of Beatlemania didn’t work out so well. In any event, he succeeded, both with this song and with Sean.

9. Working Class Hero

Despite John’s use of the F-word in this song, twice, I love the lyrics and the whole song in general. This is John at his most honest, and the guitar part is haunting, but beautiful.

8. Cold Turkey

I think Eric Clapton plays guitar on this song, but even if he doesn’t, I LOVE the guitar on this song!!!! This could have been a Beatles song. I believe the Beatles rehearsed this at some point, but I guess it didn’t make the cut. Oh well, neither did 90% of George’s songs, and he turned out all right!

7. Imagine

It would basically be blasphemy if I didn’t have Imagine on my list, so here it is. Seriously though, it’s not my favorie John song ever, and I haven’t spent hours studying the lyrics like some people, but I do love the song. I think that people take this song a bit too seriously sometimes, and they forget that, as John once said, “It’s just a song, man!” Since John didn’t take it too seriously, neither will I!

6. Whatever Gets You Thru The Night

This was John’s only #1 hit while he was alive, and he wrote it with Elton John. They actually had a deal where John agreed to appear on stage with Elton John if it went to #1. John didn’t think it would get to #1, but it did, and he appeared on stage at Madison Square Garden because of it. Anyway, this is one of John’s most upbeat and bounciest songs, and I love it!

5. Instant Karma

This song rocks!!! I love singing along to the chorus! Also, I think George played guitar on this track. Double the Beatles, double the awesomeness!

4. Watching the Wheels

This song is kind of like Imagine, but I actually like it better. The piano part is so soothing, and as usual with John, the lyrics are great. I first heard it in a ice cream store in Montauk, of all places. I’m not quite sure why I remember that.

3. #9 Dream

Ahhh, it’s Beatlesque John! This song could easily be a psychadelic Beatles song, and also reminds me a lot of one of my favorite George songs, Dream Away, especially in the “ow bowakawa” part (Spell check, anyone?) Also, one of the lyrics is actually, “Dream, dream away.” I wonder if George was inspired by this song? My Beatley senses tell me YES!

2. Jealous Guy

For some reason, this song is so beautiful that I’m always tearing up within the first 10 seconds. Combine that with an emotional Lennon/McCartney video, and I’m a wreck. It’s just so perfect. Lennon/McCartney videos always make me emotional. I don’t think I’ve ever heard this song in a public setting, but I guarantee that if I did, I’d have a hard time holding back the tears.

1. Nobody Told Me

This is my favorite John solo song and my favorite John tribute video, combined! This is rocking John at his best! He knew how to have a good time! This is the song to listen to when you’ve been working hard and nobody told you there’d be days like these. Strange days, indeed!

So there you have it. Lennon in a nutshell, sort of. But here are some more solo John songs to check out if you’re curious!
Power to the People
(Just Like) Starting Over
Oh, Yoko!
Woman
Happy Christmas, War is Over!
How Do You Sleep?
Mind Games

For all you Lennon Lovers, here’s another, stunningly beautiful picture of John to end the post. I’ve always firmly believed that George was the best looking Beatle, but John sure gives him a run for his money here!

John Lennon, lookin' fine!

John Lennon, lookin’ fine!