Aug 242011

Yeah, yeah. The White Album should’ve been edited down to a single disc. Ho-hum, Yellow Submarine was padded out with awful George Martin instrumental garbage. Yawn, Let It Be was an EP at best.

Here’s a question for Beatles fans with BALLS: can you assemble a Beatles album — 10 tracks minimum, using only official album and single tracks on which at least half of the band played — that you would never listen to? One that you would actively dislike, and dissuade your friends from buying because it sucked so much? What would be on that suckiest Beatles album to never be released?

I look forward to your responses — especially yours, EPG.



  19,757 Responses to “New Beatles Album Released… and, Thanks to You, It’s Terrible!”

  1. saturnismine

    Your Mother Should Know
    Honey Pie
    Wild Honey Pie
    Revolution #9
    Fool on the Hill
    Within Without You
    Love You To
    Rocky Raccoon
    Long, Long Long

    • jeangray

      Not a Harrison fan???

      • saturnismine

        There are only three Georgie’s on my list! That’s as many as there are of John’s or Paul’s. In fact, I don’t meet the 10 song requirement. We’ll throw in “Maxwell’s…” for a complete round of ten.

        I like George just fine. His songs that swing for the fences (WWY and LTY) are particularly hard for me, however.

        On the other hand, I think “If I Needed Someone” is one of my favorite Beatles songs of all (and yes, I’m aware of its status as a Byrds derivative, but I’m not grading these things on context).

        • misterioso

          I gather sitars get your undies in a bunch, but Long Long Long is a gorgeous song.

          • saturnismine

            No, man…I dig sitars. But both of those songs are tedious to me. Especially Love to You. My inner listener is like “man…when the hell is this thing gonna be OVER??”

            As for Long Long Long, yeah…I hear ya…I said I love the bridge and the drumming, didn’t I? But dude, those verses? the first time I heard it I was like…”is there a song playing?” Sooo timid. What the hell IS that, anyway?

          • misterioso

            Yes, I had not seen your partial recantation on Long Long Long when I wrote that. No question, it is a strange song, but I find it a very powerful one. Incidentally, I read somewhere once that it basically cops the chord progression from Dylan’s Sad-Eyed Lady of the Lowlands–can someone assess this for me?

          • I agree, Long Long Long is one of my favorites

  2. The Beatles Brown Album….

    1. Don’t Pass My By
    2. Maxwell’s Silver Hammer
    3. Within You Without You
    4. Don’t Let Me Down
    5. Your Mother Should Know
    6. Wild Honey Pie
    7. Till There Was You
    8. Octopus’s Garden
    9. Run For Your Life
    10. Good Night

  3. saturnismine

    I like your album, Tone…that is to say, I hate it!

    But not as much as mine. I’m a sucker for “til There was You,” but I don’t take exception to its presence on the Brown album.

    “Don’t Let me Down,” and “Run for Your Life,” however, are songs I’ve always liked.

    If we switched out Maxwell’s Silver Hammer for Fool on the HIll, and Octopus’s Garden for Long Long Long (which at least has a nice bridge, and pretty awesome drumming by Ringo), I think we’d have a Super Turd on our hands.

    • I was trying to keep this album balanced, otherwise it would have been too easy to make it all Paul songs.

      I know “Don’t Let Me Down” is a popular song and perhaps my stance on it needs an explanation. The version we hear is a terrible rendition of what might have been a good song. It’s sloppy, there’s no groove, the instruments aren’t tuned together, it drags terribly, and you can sometimes hear the band stumbling around for a center or downbeat. Billy Preston is still trying to figure out what’s best for the song. I really hate John’s singing when he goes “Ooh, she do me/Yes, she duhhhhhs.” The whole thing sounds like a first take. I know people say that “it’s real, man – it’s authentic!” I’ve been hearing that for decades. Well, all I have to say is thank God for George Martin.

      “Run For Your Life” sounds like something John wrote with a gun pointed to his head – “John, do something quick – We gotta get another song in by 11 PM!” To me it’s the weakest song by far on Rubber Soul.

      I strongly considered “Fool On the Hill” – it’s not a good song. However, “Maxwell” is so unbearably saccharine-cute and whimsical – it’s like gagging on a bottle of Karo syrup. I can just see John and George rolling their eyes at this one. “Fool” at least tried to have a meaning.

      I just don’t like “Octopus”. The song wants to be a kiddie-tune followup to “Yellow Submarine” but it sounds too calculated of an effort. The goofball humor and charm of “Submarine” didn’t carry over so the results are cold and insincere. I hear desperation creeping in when Ringo sings “we can be so happy..” over a mindlessly-pounding jangly piano.

      I rather like “Long, Long, Long”. Not only does it make for a nice breather after the brutal pounding of “Helter Skelter”, but the song has a gentle, atmospheric feel to it. As you say, Ringo does some fine drumming on it, but I also like George’s weirdly-effected voice and the slighty woozy-sounding organ that underpins the song.

      • saturnismine

        After responding to your album, where i note the bridge and the excellent drumming of Long Long Long, I should probably reconsider it.

        To my ears, that song sounds like the bridge came first and was too good to throw out, so he wrote a song around it. The verses are flat, muttered, even blatantly timid sounding.

        We agree on “Fool on the Hill” and “Maxwell’s…”. My goodness (shaking my head), I’ve never been at a point in my life when whatever glory those songs might have to offer suddenly revealed itself to me.

        I don’t judge “Don’t Let Me Down” (or any of these songs) on the quality of their performances or their sequence on their album’s (Long Long Long’s status as a “nice breather” after Helter Skelter is certainly one of its strengths, but not one of its wholly intrinsic strengths).

        The performance of “Fool on the Hill” is spotless. But that didn’t sway either of us from labeling it a turd. So why should the sloppy performance of what is, by your own admission, a good song, qualify it?

        But where “Don’t Let Me Down” is concerned, quality of performance is a nice tangent that I’m willing to join. Listen closely; it’s not the slopfest you say, especially on one specific point; I’ve listened to the Hey Jude LP release, the Glyn Johns Get Back version, and the Let it Be Naked version just now, and nobody’s stumbling around for a downbeat. You’ve done this before, haven’t you (weren’t you the one who claimed that the live version of “Coming Up” contained horns struggling to keep up? And didn’t a close listen to that reveal spot on horn playing? Don’t make shit up, Tone!).

        In fact, one of that song’s major achievements is its ability to create a strung out, loose atmosphere out of a performance of right notes. If you think it’s a bad performance, try covering it and playing it the way they do. It’s almost impossible to do if you follow your own rote muscle memory habits of playing.

        In the end, If you hate it, you hate it. That’s reason enough for you to put it on your list.

        I think BigSteve’s list contains at least half debatable songs, but what the hey? It’s *his* list and he’s entitled.

        • tonyola

          I just listened to “Don’t Let Me Down” again and it’s still clumsy as hell. Listen to the mess at 1:56 in the included clip. That’s what I mean by stumbling. Please don’t tell me that was planned. Perhaps that appeals to you, but I don’t like it. It’s hard to cover because it’s difficult to exactly reproduce a bad performance – one tends to make it bad in a different way. I stand by my criticisms (and of “Coming Up”, too).

          • saturnismine

            I was taking issue with your claim that there is “stumbling around for a center or downbeat.”

            What you’ve provided is a wrong note.

            Moving target much?

            It’s clammy, for sure, but it almost sounds like a flourish, a run of the fingers down the keyboard. And passes quickly and without incident.

            To quote myself from last night: that’s the best you can do?

            And please point to the part of my post where I claimed that any of the mistakes on any of these takes are “planned.” That wasn’t my point, and I’m sure you know that.

            Again: you admit it’s a good song. I’m gently asking a harmless question: is this one Preston fluff, which doesn’t botch the song, enough to place it alongside the likes of “Octopus’s Garden” on an album of Beatle duds?

            If you’d like to point to the part of the live release of Coming Up where the horns lose the beat, go for it.

          • tonyola

            I said “might have been a good song”. That’s not the same thing, is it? Potential does not equal actual. 2:39 – The bass and Ringo hit at different points. Sounds like stumbling to me even if it’s deliberate. I’m not going to flog the dead horse anymore over minutiae. “Don’t Let Me Down” is lousy – the end.

          • tonyola

            “And please point to the part of my post where I claimed that any of the mistakes on any of these takes are “planned.””

            I never said that you claimed such a thing. You’ve been twisting things I’ve said into negatives (or false positives) for a while now. This is another reason why I’m not going to argue anymore.

          • saturnismine

            Now I know why before I jumped back into the fray, I was reading all these posts by EPG telling you to calm down.

            It’s all good, Tone, it really is.

            I was just trying to understand why you included “Don’t Let Me Down” in your list.

            It seems that the more I ask, the more irritated you get as we find that a., you’re making mountains out of molehills, and b., you can’t really substantiate your own reasons.

            By even the most uptight standards, what you called a “mess” at 1:56 is hardly that.

            And this new clam you’ve found at 2:39 is the kind of thing that appears on lots of great recordings by lots of bands from that period and earlier.

            And so when push has come to shove, you revert back to proclaiming universals: “Don’t Let me Down is lousy: the end.”

            I apologize for thinking that your comment, “Please don’t tell me that was planned,” meant you thought I was arguing as much. It sure sounded like that’s what you were suggesting, however.

            I also apologize for missing the important distinction between your claiming it was a good song and your claiming that it might have been a good song. My bad.


            Don’t do it.

          • For the record, EPG had flung personal insults at me. It was uncalled for.

          • misterioso

            This is priceless stuff, you two! Gotta say I am squarely on planet saturnismine regarding Don’t Let Me Down. I mean, c’mon: There’s a duff note at 1:39!!! Oh, the pain of it all!! Make it stop!!!!! Funny stuff. High fives all around.

          • saturnismine

            Thanks for the support, dude.

  4. BigSteve

    Only ten? Easy:

    When I’m 64
    She’s Leaving Home
    Your Mother Would Know
    Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da
    Rocky Raccoon
    Honey Pie
    Maxwell’s Silver Hammer

    Throw in Let It Be and Long & Winding Road as bonus tracks.

  5. jeangray

    I have listened to so much Beatles, that I have completely lost my objectivity. Just about everything off of the #1’s album makes my skin crawl now. But I still think they are the greatest R-n-R band of all-time. I’m paradoxical like that.

  6. hrrundivbakshi

    I should be clear: if possible, leave your “I’m so sick of that song, I can’t listen to it anymore” biases at the door. I’m looking for songs you couldn’t recommend to anybody — including people who’d never heard them before.

    Things are hopping at work, so I’ll have to post my Brown Album trackkksss later. But I’m having a great time reading yours. Keep ’em coming!

  7. shawnkilroy

    The Long & Winding Road
    Why Don’t We Do it in the Road
    Hello Goodbye
    She Loves You
    P.S. I Love You
    Obladi obla da
    Wild Honey Pie
    Good Night
    One After 909
    Maggie Mae

  8. bostonhistorian

    Why would I need to assemble an album when I have the entire White Album already put together for me? The only problem is that it’s already been released, so I’ll take off Helter Skelter and add Maxwell’s Silver Hammer. There. Done and done.

  9. pudman13

    I’m not sure it’s fair to list cover versions, because there are easily a whole album’s worth of those I could live without, but if I have to pick actual originals:

    What Goes On (easily my least favorite Beatles song)
    Run for Your Life (musically fine, but lyrically appalling)
    Little Child
    When I Get Home
    I Need You
    You Like Me too Much
    Good Night
    Only A Northern Song
    Octopus’s Garden
    One After 909
    For you Blue
    Long And Winding Road
    I’ll Get You

    By the way, all the Paul-bashing in this thread is really hanking me off.

  10. I’m both surprised and somewhat pleased that no-one has yet mentioned the perennial favorite of Worst Beatle Song lists – “Mr. Moonlight”. That shows good judgement and taste on the part of the commentariat.

  11. mockcarr

    I’m doing 11 since this is a US release.

    P.S. I Love You
    Ask Me Why
    A Taste Of Honey
    Mr. Moonlight
    Within You Without You
    Honey Pie
    Revolution 9
    Good Night
    For You Blue
    Dig It

  12. misterioso

    Ok, this list made without looking at anyone else’s so as to be pure and uninfluenced. I note that there is only one John song (since I omitted Rev. #9 from consideration as a non-song) and nothing from George. Sorry, Paul & Ringo!

    1. Maxwell’s Silver Hammer
    2. Mr. Moonlight
    3. Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da
    4. Act Naturally
    5. Hold Me Tight
    6. Till There Was You
    7. What Goes On
    8. A Taste of Honey
    9. Wild Honey Pie
    10. Octopus’ Garden

    I should add that I am fairly tolerant of most of these and perhaps only Maxwell truly raises my ire, though Hold Me Tight is dreadful, just not truly annoying. The Ringo tunes are almost totally inoffensive, but if pushed, these are what I come up with.

    • mockcarr

      I think Trollyvox once took me to task for dissing Hold Me TIght. Ugh, the “you you you” stuff is bad, but I believe it’s worse in P.S. I Love You.

      • misterioso

        The you you you business is annoying, but the whole rushed, pseudo-exciting backing AND vocal crushes the song, which clearly was not going to be a world-beater under the best circumstances.

      • saturnismine

        If I’m not mistaken, T-vox had a boner for that song because he thought it started right with the chorus. He was on a jag whereby almost any song that started with the chorus was arbitrarily great for that reason and that reason alone. It’s a songwriter thing, I imagine.

        But then I pointed out that the part that starts the song (“feels so right now hoooold…metiiiight.”) isn’t the chorus. The chorus goes “Hold (hold) me tight (me tight) tonight (tonight) tonight (tonight)…” and then all those “you’s” come in.

        Pace T-vox, however, it is kinda cool how that song starts. It’s like someone opened a door and the Beatles were in mid-jam. They sound like they’re chugging full bore right at the very start.

  13. misterioso

    This discussion has really turned me around: Jesus, the Beatles are awful! What the hell have I been on all these years that I thought they were any good?

  14. I don’t know if HVB corrected anyone, but if the tracks required the participation of at least half the Beatles, meaning 2 of the 4 members, that rules out some selections I’ve seen listed, such as the George Indian tunes, Wild Honey Pie, and Yesterday. I don’t know if Goodnight was suggested, but that’s also a 1-Beatle recording.

    Here’s my 10 selections for The Worst of The Beatles, in suggested sequence:

    Side 1
    1. She’s a Woman
    2. Kansas City/Hey, Hey, Hey, Hey
    3. Run for Your Life
    4. Blackbird Why Don’t We Do It in the Road I Me Mine
    5. Revolution #9

    Side 2
    1. The Word
    2. Maxwell’s Silver Hammer
    3. Octopus’s Garden
    4. Rocky Raccoon
    5. Long Tall Sally

    • misterioso

      True, I simply ignored that criterion. As did you: see “Blackbird,” which is Paul only, no? Funny, I know lots of people who love Kansas City/Hey Hey Hey. I think it is only so-so. Whereas Long Tall Sally might be my favorite Beatles cover tune: absolutely smoking.

      • And I am TRULY SORRY for overlooking the fact that “Blackbird” is a one-man turd. Thanks for calling bullshit on me, misterioso. Where’s HVB to police this thread?

        I’ll replace “Blackbird” with “Why Don’t We Do It in the Road.” I just checked and forgot that Ringo wasn’t able to come up with an excuse to miss that session.

        • mockcarr

          That’s just Paul too. Try again.

          • misterioso

            Yeah, I thought so too, but I don’t have my handy reference library with me to confirm it.

          • According to Wikipedia, which is ALWAYS right, Ringo played drums on the final version. I would glady be wrong – and apologize – if I am indeed wrong. Meanwhile, where’s HVB to police these entries? I’ll see if I can pull out my Lewisohn book and then suggest another 10th song, if need be. It begins to get hard for me to suggest a real stinker according to hrrundi’s guidelines, at this point.

        • mockcarr

          It had to be overdubs then, because the legend was he did it himself.

        • pudman13

          Are you out of your cotton-picking mind? “Blackbird” is one of the greatest songs the Beatles, or anyone, ever did. Egads…I can live with the “She Love You” bashing before I can take this. I never thought I’d see that one in this thread.

          • pudman13

            In my disgust, I managed some pretty wacked out typos there. Why doesn’t Rock Town Hall have an edit function?

          • I fixed your typo, pudman13. No, I wasn’t kidding. “Blackbird” is such a candyass and unnecessary attempt at getting laid. I don’t care about the touching backstory of the song’s Civil Rights stance. Paul was trying to impress a bird. Any guy who’s taken the time to learn that song is trying to impress a bird. I’ve got nothing against anyone impressing anybody, but I find that song more smug than all of Paul’s Songs-to-Me-Auntie numbers combined.

            So, did it work?

            (All in fun, my friend – I’m sure you know that. I just don’t like the song, and I’ve never liked how inadequate and awkward a human being it makes me feel.)

          • pudman13

            I don’t think Paul had to write a song to get laid. I don’t think anyone ever had an easier time of it, wouldn’t you think? But we all have our tastes. I can see why, for example, “She’s Leaving Home” is on so many people’s list, for the same reason I’d put “A Man Needs A Maid” on my “worst of Neil Young” list, but I have to say I’ve always been a sucker for McCartney’s songs about ordinary women leading ordinary lives. There’s something so much more real and non-exploitive about the above songs, and “Eleanor Rigby” and “Another Day” and “Lady Madonna,” to name a few, than male rockers’ ham-handed attempts at feminism or whatever (yes, I’m looking at you, John Lennon). I not only love those songs; I give him a pass on his hokey family stuff because I really do think it’s coming from somewhere real. Anyway, lyrical sentiment aside, I think “Blackbird” is utterly beautiful, and it’s a heck of a fun song to play on the guitar too (I learned it only to impress myself). btw, I don’t know about anyone else, but when I learned the guitar I sure didn’t see the girls flocking to my side… As an aside, after years of looking for it, I finally saw DEEP END, which contained lots of nude Jane Asher. I always wondered how those who thought of her as Britain’s sweetheart thought about this fall from grace.

          • RIGHT – and that’s why the fact that he still occasionally churned out “eff-me” songs bugs me so. Thinking about this has dredged up a lot of personal stuff that I’ll get into in the coming days. I hope others will join me in sharing.

          • misterioso

            I see some unisex hair salon and hip uncle’s record collection anecdotes in our future…let the healing begin!

          • pudman13

            Well, thankfully he never wrote lyrics as awful as, to give my favorite examples, the MC5’s “Let Me Try” and “Miss X.” I think the line about “undulating hips” has to be some kind of rock and roll milestone, no?

          • Comparing McCartney to the MC5 is like comparing Babe Ruth to Johnny Briggs.

          • misterioso

            pudman, I agree with you on Blackbird, which is a fine song. Perhaps Mod is reacting (consciously or unconsciously) against the latter-day elevation of the song (by Paul himself, primarily) into a Major Civil Rights Statement and therefore a Very Important Song and Proof that Paul Was the Really Edgy One. Well, whatever. It is still a very good song which may, indeed, have a civil rights message.

          • pudman13

            Good point. The ‘5, by the way, are about as ugly as any rock and roll band I can think of, so I guess they did have to write terrible songs to try to get some action. and based on all the comments about “bitches” in “Teenage Lust” they weren’t getting too many with their kindness or personalities either.

    • saturnismine

      the rule that all four have to be on the tune is bullshit.

      if they put it out under the Beatles name, that’s good enough for me.

      • Where’s HVB to call bullshit on sat’s incorrect call of bullshit? The rule is that “at least half” the band must be on the track. That’s a rule, man. I didn’t make the rules. I don’t know why I have to take any heat for enforcing them.

        • saturnismine

          no heat for you, dude.

          even if it’s at least half, it’s a still bullshit rule.

          i’ll say it again: if they put it out under the Beatles name, that should be enough. it’s released as a beatles tune. basta.

          • hrrundivbakshi

            I came up with this rule to make sure people didn’t include the George Martin kaka from “Yellow Submarine.” Which was also put out under the Beatles name. I should have just excluded George Martin kaka. So let it be written, so let it be done — anything issued under the Beatles name that was not George Martin kaka is allowed!

        • tonyola

          I agree with saturnisnine here. The “at least half” rule is limiting and artificial. If a song has been released as a work by the Beatles, then it should be eligible. By HVB’s standard, “Yesterday” is ineligible since it’s only Paul and strings. However, for better or worse, “Yesterday” is one of the most important Beatle songs, not least due to the sheer number of cover versions it has inspired.

    • BigSteve

      Jesus, what’s wrong with Kansas City? I know this is like the Standells/Dirty Water discussion. You just hate it because it’s played whenever the Royals win a home game, and your loathing for the Royals has clouded your judgement. Come on, the Royals don’t win often for this to be an issue.

      • I just don’t like the Beatles’ cover of it. It’s beneath them. It brings out stuff in Paul I don’t like. That’s all. The song itself isn’t too bad. And remember: I’m the guy who wants to legislate rebuilding the Royals and Pirates to their ’70s-era spendor.

        • saturnismine

          While we’re at it, can we demolish the Brewers back to their era of mediocrity?

          • The playoffs will put them in their place.

          • misterioso

            I still think the Brewers are in the AL East. Where have you gone, Sixto Lezcano?

          • saturnismine

            I actually think September might put them in their place.

            I must admit to feeling *major* shameful joy at 2011: Tony La Russa’s horrible season of I’m-a-baseball-genius-who-nearly-invented-the-game micromanagement.


          • High five! I can’t stand LaRussa. He’s the modern-day Lasorda, for me, in terms of least-favorite genius manager.

          • misterioso

            When the Sox kicked the Cards to the curb in ’04 one of the greatest pleasures was seeing that painted-haired pseudo-genius staring into space, not knowing what just hit him. Major downgrade of semi-genius Jim Leyland for not dealing out similar punishment in ’06.

          • mockcarr

            No, the Brewers are good, and at least they know how to spell their nickname. It’s certainly more appropriate than female horses. Is Philadelphia where Wells Fargo or the Pony Express started or something?

          • saturnismine

            yeah, *really,* man.

            that cards team that won it in ’86 might be the worst team to ever win a world series.

            staring into space as your team goes up in flames is the hallmark of many an arrogant coach: Andy Reid does it every January, Davey Johnson did it when the Indians knocked out the O’s in ’97, Bill Bellechick has done it every January since beating the Eagles in the ’04 Super Bowl…and on and on the list goes.

  15. Gonna try and avoid the ones that have gotten the most mention already. (But I will be repeating some earlier entries.)

    1. Ask Me Why
    2. PS I Love You
    3. Do You Want to Know a Secret
    4. Little Child
    5. Hold Me Tight
    6. Devil in Her Heart
    7. You Like Me Too Much
    8. All Together Now
    9. Maxwell’s Silver Hammer
    10. The Long and Winding Road

    This was tough. I don’t know what you guys are talking about — this band’s pretty good, if you ask me.

    Eagerly awaiting Alexmagic’s contribution to this thread

  16. alexmagic

    I’ll play. I don’t hate any of these or think they’re junk, but I’ll call it a list of the 10 Most Inessential:

    1. A Taste of Honey (Least Essential Beatle Song)
    2. When I Get Home (Worst Original Beatle Song)
    3. I Wanna Be Your Man
    4. Within You Without You
    5. Words of Love
    6. You Like Me Too Much
    7. Long Tall Sally
    8. Dizzy Miss Lizzy

    My required controversial 9th and 10th selections:
    9. Love Me Do
    10. Doctor Robert

    • hrrundivbakshi

      Thank goodness SOMEBODY called out that “Dr. Robert” turd.

      • Dr. Robert was really close to making the list, but I think the bridge is decent and the production is top notch. It’s boring, but there’s not much cringe-worthy in in besides the lyrical conceit.

        • alexmagic

          Doctor Robert seems like it has all the potential to be a winner, but it never makes it.

          I don’t know if it was lack of energy or inspiration or what, but it always comes off as a good idea with a half-assed execution to me, especially in the shadow of “She Said She Said” and “Tomorrow Never Knows”. Agreed that the bridge is the best part, but it feels like a lesser recycling of what they’d already done on “The Word” without the energy, all-in dedication and far superior vocal performances that make that one work.

        • Yeah, the bridge saves that incredibly slight song – the bridge and thoughts of all those Swingin’ Sixties asses getting stuck with “vitamin” shots.

  17. Good Night
    Love Me Do
    Maxwell’s Silver Hammer
    Mr. Moonlight
    Octopus’s Garden
    Revolution 9
    Rocky Raccoon
    She’s a Woman
    The Fool on the Hill
    The Long and Winding Road

    Bonus tracks:

    Baby’s in Black
    Do You Want to Know a Secret
    Doctor Robert
    P.S. I Love You
    The Inner Light
    Thank You Girl

    • For including “She’s a Woman,” tvox, I’m going to let HVB do his job in ruling out one of your suggestions:)

      • misterioso

        I realize “She’s a Woman” is rather…limited, lyrically, but it is a great sounding record, in its various forms–stereo, mono, and the thunderously echoing mix on Beatles ’65.

        • alexmagic

          There’s Town Hall backstory here. Mod and a few others have been upfront about stridently hating this particular Paul Voice, where he goes all Connery/Liza and sings it like “she’sh a woman!”, “turnsh me on” and “don’t give me preshentsh!”

          Frankly, I think the rest of the vocal is so great that I don’t mind that particular affectation, but I can see how McCartney putting on the scotchface might turn some people off.

          • misterioso

            Ah, I see–as long as there was a logical explanation. I don’t care if he painted himself blue and roasted haggis during the recording, it rocks.

          • The main thing about She’s a Woman is that it is inane. Inane an plodding. I don’t actually have a problem with McCartney’s vocals. In fact, he’s singing his heart out, trying to make up for what a crappy song this is. The band sounds bored playing it; in fact, as they slog through the final verse, George falls asleep and fails to hit a down-stroke on the beat. The bridge or chorus, whatever you want to call it (“She’s a woman who understands”) actually starts cooking, but lasts only about 7-8 seconds before the plodding starts up again, and this false hope of rocking I take as an insult, a kind of Lucy/Charlie Brown football move in which the Beatles remove the football at the expense of the listener. Kansas City is a work of genius compared to this slap in the face.

    • saturnismine

      Baby’s in Black is a home run to my ears. The “oh how long willittake?” harmonies soar!

    • tonyola

      I think “The Inner Light” is really a lovely, gentle little trifle. Yeah, it’s obviously Indian, but unlike the preachy and pretentious “Within You, Without You”, the song is modest and low-key with a hypnotic drone and an interesting and unusual chord progression.

  18. misterioso

    [To be spoken in the half-crazed voice of Humphrey Bogart as Fred C. Dobbs in The Treasure of the Sierra Madre.] May I throw out there that everyone who doesn’t agree entirely with me on this topic is out of their freakin’ mind? And, yeah, that means you. And you. You’re the problem. Not me. I’m the sane one. Got it?

  19. I Me Mine. Right! That should’ve made my list.

  20. saturnismine

    Just a general comment:

    With all due respect to the below named, I don’t think the lists by Alex (whom I consider a real kindred spirit), T-vox, or Oats would convince *anyone* that the band in question sucks.

    I really don’t.

    Re. this bullshit “must have half the guys in the band on it” rule: that eliminates more entries than you’d think. Namely, among the most hated thus far are Rev. #9 — which was put together by John and Yoko, who don’t actually *play* anything, and with no input from the rest — and Good Night, which I think features strings and Ringo, but nobody else.

    Again, it says “beatles” on the label bearing these songs. If they were allowed release on Beatles albums as Beatles songs, they should be allowed inclusion on an album designed to convince an imagined listener that the Beatles sucked.

    Am I annoying you yet, HVB?

    • misterioso

      sat, even though you are a madman, you are right on this and the rule can and should be ignored. Also, to pull out the pince-nez, George is audible during portions of Revolution #9 which, of course, is not exactly the same as taking part in its recording.

      • saturnismine

        wow…what does George say?

        You know, this revelation reinstates what I thought was one of my teen misperceptions about rev 9. Namely that I could hear Beatle voices on it. I guess I really could.

    • George’s voice is heard talking during #9, so that song qualifies.

    • alexmagic

      I say if somebody wants to include Revolution 9 and still play by the specific rules laid out, they would have a free pass thanks to the financial imbalance/el dorado/the watusi/the twist section when George shows up. Boom, two Beatles.

      I don’t deny that mine would be able to convince anyone not already predisposed to think they suck to do so, but I also think it’s impossible for anyone not already predisposed to think the Beatles suck to think the Beatles suck by hearing their music, so I took that as a moot point.

      I intentionally didn’t include anything like Wild Honey Pie – which I actually kinda love for the same reason I love Why Don’t We Do It In The Road, because it sounds kind of amazing – because it’s so short and serves a particular purpose in structuring the album. How bad can something that short and that weird be?

      So I went for all choices of songs that either end up failing for what they seemed to have been going for, are lesser versions of vastly superior songs you can get elsewhere in their catalog or middling efforts that aren’t saved by some outstanding John, Paul or John and Paul vocals.

      • misterioso

        Very sensible criteria. And I agree with some of your choices. It is true, for example, that When I Get Home is pretty formulaic: I wouldn’t list it because enthusiasm, in this case, and a good middle eight carry the day and it functions acceptably in context.

        Now, I am curious, though: where does Long Tall Sally fail? Obviously it is trying to invoke or recreate the wacked-out essence of Little Richard, which I would say it does and then some, complete with wonderful, sloppy lead guitar. The only odd element is the very “proper” piano playing–which if I remember correctly is George Martin rather than Paul.

      • So I went for all choices of songs that either end up failing for what they seemed to have been going for, are lesser versions of vastly superior songs you can get elsewhere in their catalog or middling efforts that aren’t saved by some outstanding John, Paul or John and Paul vocals.

        This was sorta my rule of thumb too,

        I love The White Album for its messy sprawl, so I feel even the two Honey Pies have their place. And I didn’t include any Ringo songs, because I feel all Ringo songs fulfill the obligation to be adequately… uh, Ringo-like. No Ringo song fails at that task. Conversely, “You Like Me Too Much” is George failing at being ’65-George, which is one of the best Georges.

        I acknowledge that my album may not be bad enough, although I do pretty much dislike all those songs.

        • alexmagic

          I kind of wonder if John and Paul exchanged a quick “Ew, boy” look after George came through with You Like Me Too Much. It’s strange how that one comes in (relatively) so much later into George’s songwriting cycle than “Don’t Bother Me”, but Don’t Bother Me outclasses it by so much as a better written, “cooler” song. I want to say more mature, but I’m not sure that’s right, as George’s songs of that era have a definite younger guy not ready to deal with relationships approach running through them, perhaps intentionally.

          You Like Me Too Much is George’s “It’s Only Love” without Young John Lennon’s superior singing voice to make it work.

        • tonyola

          I like “You Like Me Too Much”. It’s a very minor George song for sure, but it glides along nicely and the progression from the bridge into the verse is an interesting little touch. The guitar/piano interplay in the break is cute, too.

      • saturnismine

        you make some really good points, alex.

  21. Hrundi,

    I apologize for jumping into this thing way too late. Here’s a list of Beatles songs that really do nothing for me:

    Run for Your Life
    The Inner Light
    Blue Jay Way
    I Me Mine
    Maxwell’s Silver Hammer
    Oh Darling
    Golden Slumbers
    Carry That Weight
    Don’t Pass Me By
    The Long and Winding Road

    Real obvious choices, but there it is.

    God bless,
    E. Pluribus

    • misterioso

      Big fan of Abbey Road, are you?

      • Truth be told, Abbey road’s never really done anything for me. It sounds like a technically well done apology to their fans for all that wasted time during the Let it Be sessions. It doesn’t seem to have any emotional oooomph. I don’t see it being much different than that Blood, Sweat, and Tears LP that sold 5 billion copies.

        The last thing I wanna do is badmouth the Beatles, but . . . .

        E. Pluribus

    • hrrundivbakshi

      “Don’t Pass Me By” is, indeed, one of the worst songs in the history of this or any other band. That “country fiddle” alone is a minor Rock Crime.

      • This city boy has always dug the “country fiddle.” It’s very inauthentically authentic, like the feeling I get from watching The Beverly Hillbillies or Green Acres. I wish more country music sounded this inauthentically authentic.

      • mockcarr

        If only the song had been cut down to the noodling in the beginning to so that it was about the length of the Can You Take Me Back snippet on that side, we’d be wondering about the song and paying 20 bucks for the bootleg of it. And being just as disappointed. Seems like they only do that to Paul’s songs, Her Majesty’s another case.

  22. jeangray

    Is it the orchestra in “Good Night” that everyone hates? The lullabye, simplistic nature of it? Ringo’s voice? Not Rock?

    I suppose I jus’ don’t get it.

    Anybody care to explain in more detail???

    • mockcarr

      The vocal sounds dreary and tentative even for Ringo. The tempo is way too slow. The string arrangement is cloying and definitely anti-rock. It makes the second side of Yellow Submarine sound great in comparison. I would take every non-Beatle song on the US Help album over that.

  23. hrrundivbakshi

    I can honestly say that this album would rate “one star” in my book. I would hate it. If I bought it in a store, I might actually smash it to pieces in a fit of drunken rage.

    Don’t Pass Me By — awful in every conceivable fashion
    For You Blue — boring stoner blooz workout, lazy, irritating
    All Together Now — downright assholish
    Komm, Gib Mir Diene Hand — unnecessary and irritating in light of the English language version
    Sie Liebt Dich — see above
    Kansas City — Mod captures this song’s many sins well
    You Like Me Too Much — treacly nonsense from the one band member I can usually count on not to get all treacly
    Being for the Benefit of Mr. Kite! — dunno, just always irritated me. Overwrought, and the backstory makes me want to dislike Lennon, which I resent.
    Hello Goodbye — That outchorus is Paul’s greatest Beatles sin, and that’s saying something.
    Revolution 9 — no comment
    Rocky Raccoon — just plain bugs me, don’t like to feel it in my ears
    One After 909 — such a sad disappointment. Lazy and slow when it should have been bright, plucky and fast.

    • AWESOME rationale for not liking “…Mr. Kite”! I want to hear more about how the backstory makes you want to dislike Lennon – and how that makes you feel.

      • hrrundivbakshi

        Gifted, charismatic songwriter is bored and lazy, stoned out of his mind, lounging on a couch. Knows he’s on deck to write *something* for an upcoming album he doesn’t really care about. Spies a poster for a circus and writes a “song” about/with/through it. It’s a clever trick, he thinks, as he scratches the sole of his bare foot and lights another joint. He rolls over in the couch and falls asleep, as the semi-precious joint slowly turns to a cinder in the ashtray.

        • So what you’re saying is that you hate potsmokers. Does this have something to do with your hatred of hippies?

          • hrrundivbakshi

            I don’t hate potsmokers. I’m sure John lit another doobie after writing “She Said, She Said.” It’s the lazy songwriting trickery that bugs me. How much of that song did John actually care about? How did it make him feel? Is there a reason *I* should care about it?

          • I was just teasing you. Seriously, though, what I really want to know is how it made you feel to feel like you didn’t like Lennon. You know what I’m saying? We need to feel your pain if we’re going to facilitate your healing.

          • hrrundivbakshi

            I like Lennon “the industrious revolutionary.” The backstory to this song makes him sound like he’s lazy and doesn’t give a fuck. My fan-boy appreciation for Lennon is threatened by this song. That bugs me.

          • tonyola

            Lennon the “industrious revolutionary” was responsible for “Power to the People” and Some Time in New York City.

          • misterioso

            hrrundivbakshi, I hate to burst your bubble, and you probably know this anyway, but at this point JL was pretty much a lazy guy who didn’t give a flying fuck. This song may embody that, in some way, and Good Morning Good Morning (which I quite like but was surprised didn’t make someone’s list) is precisely about that. Naturally, none of this needs to make you like the song, though I think tony’s right and production and performance carries it very nicely. Which reminds me of a story…can someone get George Martin on the line?

        • tonyola

          The performance and production on “Mr. Kite” save the song for me. It might have been lazily written but it wasn’t lazily put together. John sings the song with a slight air of menace, and the atmosphere is not really ha-ha-circus-jolly – it sounds like everything’s a bit deranged and off-kilter.

        • alexmagic

          Is it really any different than “Lennon sees painting by son, writes trippy song about it”? Yeah, he goes to his Lewis Carroll-style lyrics bag for Lucy instead of basing it around the words on the poster (which I see less as lazy and more as him giving himself an academic challenge the same way he tried the “let me write an inscrutable song they’ll obsess over” challenge for himself on Walrus), but the appeal on both songs is the the production, playing and singing, as tonyola notes.

          Really, maybe the better comparison is, what’s different about how he wrote Kite and how he wrote Tomorrow Never Knows? In each case, he was inspired lyrically by an external source and went to George Martin and the band with the “I want a song that sounds like sawdust on a circus floor!”/”I want a song that sounds like monks chanting on a mountaintop!” challenge, and in each case, everyone involved somehow pulled it off.

          Sorry, HVB, but I’m chalking this up to another case of your RTH-infamous blind hatred of hippies, horses and hogsheads.

    • tonyola

      HVB – “Kansas City — Mod captures this song’s many sins well”

      Mr. Mod – “I just don’t like the Beatles’ cover of it. It’s beneath them. It brings out stuff in Paul I don’t like. That’s all. The song itself isn’t too bad”

      Many sins? What “stuff” in Paul? How is it beneath the Beatles? And to think I get completely raked over the coals while trying to defend my dislike of “Don’t Let Me Down”. Sheesh.

      • misterioso

        Y’know how it is tony, we read into things what we want to be there. That said, the coals can’t get hot enough for you regarding Don’t Let Me Down. Burn, baby, burn!

        • tonyola

          And “Chains”, The Word”, “She Loves You”, and “Oh Darling” get by with little or no comment. I love double standards.

          • saturnismine

            Tone, nobody’s talking bout ‘the word’ because it’s old rth sod. The mod and I had it out, with me taking the pro side. Most are probably not inclined to revisit those arguments.

            Oh Darling’s inclusion on many lists, w/ no substantial objection, makes perfect sense to me. But I can see why one should take issue w/ it’s inclusion on these lists. It’s not gonna convince anyone that the band sucks. It’s kinda like the anti-Don’t Let Me Down, though. Instead of being a good song of mediocre performance, it’s an excellent performance of a non-earth shattering song.

            She Loves You? I agree w/ you there. Start the debate!

  24. alexmagic

    This many posts and sub-posts in, I wanted to take a moment to point out how disappointed I was that Mod’s list didn’t go:

    1. Norwegian Wood
    2. Nowhere Man
    3. The Word
    4. Girl
    5. In My Life
    6. Wait
    7. Run For Your Life
    8. It’s Only Love
    9. The “Life is very short” parts of We Can Work It Out
    10. John’s vocals specifically on Day Tripper

  25. Curious as to why no one’s included “You Know My Name (Look Up the Number).” Have I misinterpreted it lo these many years? Or simply misinterpreted the rules of this thread. Both sides of my crap Beatle album would likely begin and end with this “song.”


  26. cliff sovinsanity


    1. Blue Jay Way —-UUGGGGHHHH
    2. The Inner Light – I don’t care if it doesn’t qualify. It’s shit.
    3. A Taste Of Honey – tastes vaguely of manure
    4. Not A Second Time – so forgettable you couldn’t hum it right now
    5. All Together Now
    6. Kansas City/Hey Hey Hey – Yeah, yeah, yeah whatever
    7. Baby’s In Black – Beatles For Sale needs a rating downgrade.
    8. Dig A Pony
    9. Mr Moonlight
    10. Maxwell’s Silver Hammer

    Thank You ! Goodnight !

  27. ladymisskirroyale

    Oh dear. I’ve enjoyed reading the various lists and comments. But the net result is that I feel very unworthy for this post. Let the healing begin. Thinking about songs that make many of these lists – Maxwell’s Silver Hammer, Obla-di, Obla-da, Octopuses Garden, Rocky Raccoon, Mr. Kite, All Together Now – my reaction is that I like all of them. Sure, they may not be the best Beatles songs and musicians/rockists can surely point out the faults in structure, back story, singing, playing, etc. But I enjoy listening to all of them or singing along with them. My ultimate feeling is that I’d rather take these 3rd tier Beatles songs over the 1st tier of some other band’s. I know it’s not very rock crit of me but I enjoy the Beatles and even if I don’t like the song that much, I know it will be (usually) over in about 3 minutes or less.

    • saturnismine

      I feel your pain. It seems almost mean spirited of arch-contrarian, HVB, to put us through this exercise, doesn’t it?

      But think of it as a game: what’s the worst beatles album you could make?

      The list I made is the best I could do. And you’re right: even that one probably ain’t half bad.

    • misterioso

      ladymiss, well said. Except for Maxwell’s Silver Hammer: I really do hate that.

  28. jeangray

    oKay, here goes:

    1. Besame Mucho
    2. Honey Don’t
    3. When I Get Home
    4. Everybody’s Trying to Be My Baby
    5. Dizzy Miss Lizzy
    6. The Word
    7. What Goes on
    8. The Fool on the Hill
    9. Get Back
    10. Let it Be

    Guess I don’t like their cover tunes or their Country-Western side so much.

    And after purusinging all 207 comments on this thread, ‘twould appear that the general consensus is… that Paul McCarney is EVIL!
    Many a super-fan would argue that point.

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