My Top 10 Favorite Beatles Song Lyrics

Thought this was cute. :)

Thought this was cute. 🙂

I was hemming and hawing over what to post today, when this idea popped into my head. We all know that musically the Beatles were brilliant, but their song lyrics are just as extraordinary. Sure, many of their earlier songs have a lot of “cheesy” lyrics, which I will not deny. However, whenever I listen to one of their later albums like Rubber Soul or Abbey Road, I’m amazed at just how insightful and clever the words to their songs are. Sometimes I listen to a Beatles album only to pay attention to the lyrics, which helps me see it in a whole new light. So, without further ado, here we go!

10. I Saw Her Standing There- “Well she was just seventeen, you know what I mean.”
According to The Beatles Anthology, the original opening line for this song was, “Well she was just seventeen, she’d never been a beauty queen.” When John saw that’s what Paul had written, he supposedly said, “You’re joking, right?” and they changed it. Good move, in my opinion. There isn’t that much to dissect with this one, I just like how it flows. And that it’s vaguely suggestive. 🙂

9. Revolution- “But when you talk about destruction/Don’t you know that you can count me out”
When the Beatles sang this live on David Frost in 1968, John actually said, “Don’t you know that you can count me out, in” because he wasn’t sure what he believed. One thing I love about this song in general is that from the very first note, it makes a statement, and every line in the song, like this one, lives up to the boldness of those opening guitar chords.

8. You’ve Got To Hide Your Love Away- “If she’s gone I can’t go on/Feeling two-foot small.”
The actual line for this song had “two-foot tall” instead, but when John accidentally sang “two-foot small” in the studio once, Paul suggested he keep it that way. I like that this line doesn’t make logical sense initially, but really, it does. It’s sort of like a glass half empty vs. glass half full situation. Just another example of clever wordplay from the Beatles. 🙂

7. The Long and Winding Road- “Many times I’ve been alone and many times I’ve cried/Anyway you’ll never know the many ways I’ve tried”
Paul is clearly a master at rhymes, but this line in particular just hits me in a deep emotional place. The song itself is sad, but hopeful. This might be lyrically one of Paul’s best songs ever, actually, but I’ll let you be the judge of that.

6. Think for Yourself- “Although your mind’s opaque/Try thinking more if just for your own sake.”
While this was far from George’s first song, I think is the first time his lyrics were truly on par with Lennon and McCartney. The lyrics to this entire song are great, but I chose this line in particular as an example of the growing songwriting aptitude that George demonstrated on Rubber Soul. Way to go George!

5. Old Brown Shoe- “I want a love that’s right but right is only half of what’s wrong.”
More George for you! He has said in interviews that he intended for the lyrics of this song to juxtapose each other, with words like right and wrong and early and late. The lyrics to this entire song are clever and so very George. As I’ve said before, this song is extremely underrated.

4. I’ve Just Seen a Face- The entire song
While the lyrics for this song might not be the deepest, most philosophical in the Beatles’ catalog, I really have a special place in my heart for this song because of them. The whole song flows in a really interesting way because of how the lyrics are structured, and for that reason I didn’t single one line out in particular.

3. I Am The Walrus- “Expert textpert choking smokers/Don’t you think the joker laughs at you?”
I am happy to report that I typed that line entirely from memory. I guess I’ve listened to it too many times. 🙂
But seriously, every line in this song is just nuts. I suppose that’s what happens when John Lennon writes a song purposely to confuse people who read too much into the Beatles’ lyrics.

2. The End- “And in the end the love you take/Is equal to the love you make.”
This might be one of the single best known lyrics in the Beatles’ catalog, so this might not be that original a choice, but it is truly a beautiful, poignant line. I don’t think Abbey Road and the Beatles’ career could end any better than with this line. It sums up their entire essence in one simple line.

1. Across the Universe- “Limitless undying love that shines around me like a million suns/It calls me on and on, across the universe”, but basically the entire song
I firmly believe that the lyrics to this song are some of the most beautiful words ever written. I highlighted this line in particular because it’s the one that always sticks out in my mind, but really the entire song is a beautiful fountain of poetry. John is usually known as “the lyrical one” between himself and Paul, and I think that John really makes the case for best lyric writer in the Beatles with this song. It’s definitely a masterpiece.

Wow, for coming up with this idea on a whim, I really like how this turned out! I think I’ll try to do a “top 10 lines from Monty Python” in the near future as an expansion of this post.
Have a great weekend!


You Know You’re a Beatlemaniac… Part 3 (Finally!)

That girl is me, 50 years ago... :)

That girl is me, 50 years ago… 🙂

I know I promised this post a few weeks ago. I’m sorry for the delay. Here we go, for a third time!
You know you’re a Beatlemaniac/Harrison Head if:

– You feel like screaming with delight every time you watch A Hard Day’s Night and Help! because the Beatles are just so darn cute in those movies!
– You somehow manage to integrate the Beatles into the large majority of conversations with your family and friends.
– You think to yourself, “(insert name of favorite Beatle) would be so proud of me!” whenever you have a significant accomplishment in life.
– You have your own personal pet names for each Beatle. Here are some of mine for Paul, because I think his name is the easiest to nicknamify: Paulie, Macca, Macca-bee (my personal favorite), Macca-roni, Angel Voice, Paul-Paul… You get it.
– You make a point of waking up before 8 am every Sunday to listen to Breakfast With The Beatles on your local classic rock station.
– You get weirdly excited when the traffic sign says something like, “Harrison- 1/2 mile” on it, because there’s really nothing else remotely exciting about traffic signs in general.
– You waste hours making lists like this.
– Your friends tell you about Beatle references they heard in class, knowing you’ll get the reference and appreciate their Beatley concern.
– You fear that your constant mentions of the Beatles are starting to annoy your family, just a little.
– Your backpack is adorned with Beatle pins.
– You look forward to the day when maybe, just maybe, you’ll sing a Beatles song in choir, even though it’s extremely unlikely.
– You practice doodling random faceless heads with moptops when you’re bored in class, and one lucky day, the haircut looks just like Ringo’s from 1965! Another day, your attempted 1967 era George likeness looks like a girl.
– You couldn’t stop yourself from squealing with delight when George appeared in The Rutles: All You Need Is Cash! Eric Idle was also amazing as the host and as Paul McCartney in this movie parody of the Beatles. Definitely check it out on Youtube!
– You almost passed out when a fellow student asked, God help them, “Who is George Harrison?” Then, you could barely concentrate for the rest of class because of it.
– You’re outraged when you see a picture of Justin Bieber right next to a picture of John Lennon in the photo exhibit at your local library. Seriously, whose idea was that?
– You make Mii characters of all the Beatles, and spend 15 minutes trying to get Ringo’s nose right.
– You buy a Beatle birthday card in Rite Aid purely so no one else can buy it before you do.
– You have all of their birthdays saved as events on your iPod calendar.
– You talk in an attempted Liverpudlian accent more than most people realize.
– You end up giving mostly Beatle-related gifts to your friends and family over the holidays, because you honestly can’t think of what else they might like. The Beatles have truly invaded your brain at this point.
– Your love for George Harrison and his exceptional guitar skills has inspired you to want to learn how to play guitar someday.
– You’re writing your Euro research paper on the impact of rock and roll on the 1960s British youth culture, because really, for you, what other options are there?
– Your ears instantly perk up when you hear the words “Beatles,” “John,” “Paul,” “George,” “Ringo,’ “Liverpool,” “1960s,” or any related lingo being used in a conversation. Example: You sprint like a Beatlemaniac in from the other room when Paul McCartney is mentioned on TV, only to realize that its a commercial for a concert you can’t go to. Sigh…
– You watched Life of Pi, set in India, and silently wished that George would come walking through with his sitar. Sadly, it was not to be.
– You automatically end sentences with Beatle lyrics in your head. If someone says, “All you need is,” you immediately think, “love”.
– You tried to figure out who played which guitar solos in The End, like you imagine every other teenager listening to Abbey Road late at night does. Obviously, you’re in nowhere land.
– You try to imitate Paul’s singing stance, head bops and all, when playing Beatles Rock Band. You fail miserably at this, because let’s face it, you’re not Paul!
– You own a fuzzy fleece Beatle blanket, which really helps you sleep at night.
– You wrote a 5 minute speech about Rubber Soul for English class, threw in a not-so subtle Beatles reference at the end, and got an A+, because that’s how you roll when doing Beatle-related school projects!
– Any time you see someone you know in Beatle clothing, you compliment them.
– You always email your friends pictures and videos of the Beatles to brighten their day, because you don’t know how else to comfort people.
– You’ve made a personal pact that no matter what happens, you’ll NEVER stop loving the Beatles!!! Furthermore, George Harrison will always be your favorite Beatle, your favorite person in general, and your fab imaginary husband.

That’s all, folks. See you next time!