Sunday, August 15, 2010

The Beatles - "Mother Nature's Son"

A Beatles tune from their classic "White Album". This was a song rediscovered by me whilst going through some of my old cassettes. It's interesting to me that when I first listened to this album a long while ago I was taken with a lot of the tracs on this double album.

But not "Mother Nature's Son".

I was much more taken with the upbeat "Back in the USSR", "Revolution", "Rocky Raccoon", "Buffalo Bill", "Honey Pie", et al, and I quite sped past this one on my old two-speaker stereo console.

Now I think this is one the most moving songs Paul McCartney ever performed.

It was recorded in early August of 1968, about two years after the group's last official concert, on August 29th in San Francisco's Candlestick Park. Accordingto Wikipedia, it was inspired by a lecture McCartney heard from the Beatles "Ashram" period with the Madarishi Yogi. The India pictures here are therefore quite appropriate.

Does anyone else have a favorite "White Album" tune?


  1. I always found the quirky Bungalow Bill song quite amusing!

  2. Me too, Fred. That and the one about Rocky Raccoon and Gideon's Bible.

  3. 'Bunglow Bill' was about a young American lad who arrived with his mother and a lot of luggage at the ashram while The Beatles and Mia Farrow and other celebs were there. He shot a tiger and then left the place, thus gaining a rug and a place in music immortality.

  4. This is a lovely track I agree Doug, very much a psychedelic LSD inspired anthem to naturalism fully replete with proto-green sentiments.

    The White Album was the Beatles apotheosis I think, it could only ever be downhill after that according to the immutable laws of Karma.

    I wouldn't say it was exactly my favourite track but I want to make a case for Revolution Number 9 as a really memorable experience in sound.

    I really like hearing that about once every 9 years and as it happens tonight is the night when it is due to be replayed through these old headphones of mine... just like in the past (spookily synchronous or what Doug?).

    Actually I think this track really is excellent - it has the magic that can evoke the actual feel and taste of those short but stunning years of realignment and runaway rebellion.

    Revolution Number 9 was the soundtrack to the end of a wonderful party....'take this brother may it serve you well'.

    Just over the brow of the hill, the slowly manifesting appearance on the horizon of a new form of popular fascism... that later became known as Thatcherism here and by many other names elsewhere.

    Now we just call it normality of course.

    This here track is I think the overture to the end of on second thoughts it might even be my favourite track from the White Album after all...... now that my youth is of course long since spent. ENJOY!

  5. It was indeed enjoyable to really listen to Revolution 9, AA. It was like opening up a Pandora's Box of strange sounds, gunfire and football chants, clamour and babble, the stuff of everyday life turned upside down and around...' A sense of violence seems to pervade a lot of the songs on this album...and a sense of happiness, too, wishful more than real (Ob-La-Di, Ob La-Da) but we know how it all ended now so badly now...maybe I'm reading a bit into this.

    I think this was The Album for me as well. A realization might have been reached by Lennon here that this was as far as it could go and that, coupled with the egos and the insanity of Beatlemania finally took its toll, or should I say The group finished the race so far ahead of the pack that a victory lap or two. The chasm between something like this and "Meet the Beatles" is so great that one thinks of this as from another group decades later. Could time have really flown that fast back between late 1963 to 68?

    It is nice and a bit uncanny that we hit about the same timeframe concerning a portion of this album. How many others out there are merging I wonder?...

  6. Quite so, Fred. And with "Happiness is a Warm Gun" taking on an eerie resonance in light of the terrible events that took place outside the Dakota in New York some dozen years later.