Beatles Song Countdown: 70-66

70: Kansas City/Hey-Hey-Hey

Album: Beatles for Sale
Writer: Jerry Leiber, Mike Stoller (and Little Richard?)
Singer: McCartney

Verdict: An amalgamation of two songs, sort of. This is mostly a cover of Little Richard’s version of Kansas City, as he added the whole hey-hey-hey bit. Paul knocks it out of the park. Pretty sure this is the last cover song on the list. 

69: The Long and Winding Road

Album: Let It Be
Writer: McCartney
Singer: McCartney

Verdict: Woah this song had a lot of controversy. Not that he needed a lot of nudging, but Phil Spector’s overdubbing of the song led Paul to officially break up the band. Yeah, there’s some unnecessary harp there, but it’s one of the few things Spector did okay with on this album. Apparently John intentionally played poorly on the record which led to a lot of the drama. Anyway, the band’s final #1 hit and a really sweet ballad.

68: Birthday

Album: The Beatles
Writer: Lennon/McCartney
Singer: McCartney

Verdict: I have distinct memories of going to Chuck E. Cheese as a kid and the animatronic beasts belting out this song every time. The final song Paul and John worked on together; John has called it “garbage.” I love its energy. I perhaps overrated due to it being better than almost every other birthday song in history.

67: Things We Said Today

Album: A Hard Day’s Night
Writer: McCartney
Singer: McCartney

Verdict: A precursor to Paul’s similarly thematic “Yesterday.” I love the chord changes here, and for a nice change Paul sings with a pretty low voice.

66: Being For The Benefit of Mr. Kite

Album: Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band
Writer: Lennon
Singer: Lennon

Verdict: Famously ripped from an early 19th century circus poster, a musically bizarre and complex song that I enjoy nevertheless. I have a strange fascination with the underbelly of carnivals despite the fact that I can’t imagine myself enjoying being at one. For once the Hammond organ fits in perfectly and other carnival music is thrown in.

2 thoughts on “Beatles Song Countdown: 70-66”

  1. I’m with John; “Birthday” is pretty damned bad. I probably don’t dislike it nearly as much as he does, though (it really seems like a song he’d distance himself from).

    I don’t know if I’ve heard “Mr. Kite.” Listening now…

    1. Never mind; I recognize it about four seconds in. I just haven’t heard it for years.

      Yeah, this is pretty alright.

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