The Beatles and Nuance

Discussion in 'Tab, Tips, Theory and Technique' started by rokdog49, Mar 2, 2015.

  1. rokdog49

    rokdog49 Friend of Leo's

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    If you're not a Beatles fan you may stop reading.

    While learning the song "No Reply" yesterday, I once again became aware of the little nuances in chords found so often that make Beatle's Songs what they are.
    Lennon uses an F6 to G6 to a C6 type of chord in the verse.
    I always played it with F, G, C, but I knew it wasn't exactly correct. Using the original chords he wrote makes it sound so much cooler.

    For an untrained musician, he sure was creative.
     
  2. T.J.Chillingham

    T.J.Chillingham TDPRI Member

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    I've been working on "I'll Cry Instead" and the further I get, the more impressed I am. If you haven't already seen it, there's a youtube channel beatles lead guitar secrets that's really good.
     
  3. blowtorch

    blowtorch Telefied Ad Free Member

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    I thought "Why Don't We Do It In The Road" had nice nuance
     
  4. BigDaddyLH

    BigDaddyLH Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    Great Little Richard impersonation.
     
  5. boneyguy

    boneyguy Doctor of Teleocity

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    Well his ears were very trained...the popular music in the era the lads grew up in contained harmony and chord movement that was generally more sophisticated then most of the pop music of the '60's onward....so they were certainly 'trained' by what they had listened to growing up.
     
  6. klasaine

    klasaine Poster Extraordinaire

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    +1000!
    They may not have have had traditionally formal music lessons but by '64 they had done their 10,000 hours.
     
  7. slauson slim

    slauson slim Friend of Leo's

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    Likely George Martin was helpful too.
     
  8. brookdalebill

    brookdalebill Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    Lennon was a wonderful, natural, "seasoned" musician.
    By seasoned, I mean experienced.
    There is nothing like pounding out the hits for dancers to teach you the value of nuance.
    Sheer boredom with playing the same stuff, with the same guys set after set to instill a need to create, IMO.
    The Beatles were "working" musicians before they "caught fire".
    I do value education, study, and perseverance, but there is nothing like OJT (on the job training).
     
  9. klasaine

    klasaine Poster Extraordinaire

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    Good producers (and engineers) can always help. But if there ain't nothin' to produce ... then what? And sir George would tell you exactly that.
     
  10. slowpinky

    slowpinky Tele-Afflicted

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    When I was a kid trying to figure out guitar parts off Beatles records I got stumped many times - exactly like the OP. Sometimes while I could hear the notes, I just couldnt figure out how George fingered guitar parts like the intros to I Feel Fine or Help to name just a couple. The odd bit of TV footage and some guidance from older players helped with some of it.
    In retrospect George was already in the early days of the Beatles looking for the most musical way of playing his guitar parts - certainly not the easiest way.
    I think the same kinds of decisions were made with many of Lennons rhythm parts too. The great thing about the Beatles for me is that right through their relatively short time together , they maintained and developed this tireless inquiring approach to sound, harmony and subtle effective ways to tweak chords. They still sound interesting to me- and I cant say that about alot of pop music.
     
  11. rokdog49

    rokdog49 Friend of Leo's

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    Thanks for that info, I'll check it out. I was beginning to wonder if there were ever to be any comments on this post. Call me sick but I'm fascinated by the little nuance things in the Beatles songs. It's truly creative sometimes in the simplest things as a chord variation, an intro, rhythm guitar parts or a bass line that makes them so special.
     
  12. jbmando

    jbmando Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    I defy the average band to cop the vocal harmonies on "Drive My Car" or "Magical Mystery Tour." You know there's something different about them but it is so challenging to hear each part. No group I've ever been part of has replicated the Lads' vocals - just the parts, let alone the fact that John Lennon might have had the best rock 'n' roll voice in history.
     
  13. Coop47

    Coop47 Poster Extraordinaire

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    I'm a Stones guy, but there's no denying the sophistication of the Beatles' songs from all eras. Rockdog nailed it. The deeper you dig into them, the more cool stuff you find.
     
  14. Shane_B.

    Shane_B. Tele-Meister

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    There's a really good web site called Beatles Bible. It has a lot of information about their recording sessions and tons of other cool stuff about them.

    Not taking away from their vocal ability at all, but a lot of the stuff you hear on the recordings (Magical Mystery Tour for example )isn't reproducible without some studio trickery. They altered tape speeds (not on MMT), even had a device created for them called an Artificial Double Track machine. Nothing wrong with any of that, but it did pose the problem of not being able to do some of their material live.
     
  15. LeeVegas

    LeeVegas Tele-Meister

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  16. rokdog49

    rokdog49 Friend of Leo's

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    Wow, you are correct. Maybe even a few more days. Very interesting if you're like me and care enough about this stuff. The thing that stands out in all this is once again, the creative genius. For naysayers, I'll always revert back to my premise that whether you think the Beatles weren't great musicians or singers, they certainly were innovative and ground-breaking in Pop music.
     
  17. darkwaters

    darkwaters Tele-Afflicted

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    Just picked up a Hal Leonard book of Beatles tunes arranged for classical guitar. Starting off with Lennon's In My Life. Gonna be fun !
     
  18. knopflerfan

    knopflerfan Tele-Afflicted

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    One of my favorite songs of all-time - "I'll Be Back". Incredible harmonies, deceptively difficult guitar parts (lead and rhythm), and all recorded on June 1, 1964 when rock was in it's infancy. The Beatles are still underrated, in my book.
     
  19. Bob L

    Bob L Tele-Meister

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    I thought I would add my $.02 and mention a chord George plays in his Till There Was You solo - a Gb7#9 before resolving to F near the end. Not only did he put in a jazz chord that you didn't hear many rock and rollers using at the time, he also used a tritone substitution for V.

    I have read disparaging comments about how easy that solo is. I would bet most of those people get that chord wrong.
     
  20. klasaine

    klasaine Poster Extraordinaire

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    Wow, really? I've never heard or read anyone disparage that particular GH solo.
    I mean it's not a Parker solo on Donna Lee but it's friggin awesome and definitely not super simple. Especially considering the context. IMO that's some of George's best work.
     
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