Wednesday, May 7, 2008

I Should Have Known Better (Beatles Week)

The Beatles
A Hard Day's Night
"I Should Have Known Better"

The clip above is edited from some A Hard Day's Night footage by a Youtube user, but it perfectly captures not just the exuberance of the song, but the entire film.

(By the way, if you have never seen the movie A Hard Day's Night, you probably should. It is excellent: great music, funny, kinetic performances, and arsty black and white – what more do you need? Here's a taste: part 1, part 2, part 3, part 4.)

Unlike virtually every other guitar player in the sixties, George Harrison eschewed improvisation, and his recorded output features, almost exclusively, composed guitar solos. On "I Should Have Known Better", he mostly duplicates the main melody:

But fuck me if that doesn't sound great. I think this may have been George's first recording with a Rickenbacker twelve-string, and it went on to virtually define the sound of the album (it's featured in the solos of 5 of the 13 songs).