Tag Archives: December Music et al

My Generation Rubber Soul

My Generation Rubber Soul

December 3, 1965

Quite a day for rock history. On December 3, 1965 saw the release of both the Who’s My Genration and The Beatles’s Rubber Soul.

The albums’ arrived before FM rock stations and I for one did not realize the importance of what was happening.  If someone had said that Nicky Hopkins had sat in on The Who’s album, I’d have returned a blank look. There was no Rosko on New York’s WNEW-FM to guide me. Not yet. In the meantime…

My Generation Rubber Soul

1965

1965 was the beginning of the 60s music that will lead to the Woodstock Music and Art Fair. Bob Dylan has gone electric and he wasn’t working on Maggie’s farm no more. Bob shared his herbs and spices with the Fab Four (Bob Dylan Introduces the Beatles). Pop musicians were realizing that they can write what they feel, not just what they think you feel. And many musicians followed Dylan’s lead and wrote their own songs.

 

My Generation Rubber Soul
My Generation album cover.
My Generation Rubber Soul

When the Who released their first album on December 3, 1965 (in the UK; the US won’t hear it until April). Keith Moon was 19; Pete Townshend 20 ; Roger Daltry and John Entwistle both 21.  According to their site: The Who’s debut album was …recorded in short bursts in April, October and November 1965, and for many tracks The Who were joined by Nicky Hopkins on piano. (for more, click through >>> My Generation)

I could give you a video of from the 65 album, but let’s jump ahead almost four years to that little field party called the Woodstock Music and Art Fair. It’s followed by “Naked Eye.”

My Generation Rubber Soul

Rubber Soul

My Generation Rubber Soul

The Beatles were off the road and staying in the studio where they could find solace from fans.  All of Rubber Soul‘s songs were written after their last tour. The Beatles management knew about Christmas shopping and often released a new album in time for parents to get “that new album.”

Nowadays, this might be my favorite of the album. I guess it’s the most appropriate for my generation’s rubber soul.

My Generation Rubber Soul
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George Harrison Wonderwall Music

George Harrison Wonderwall Music

December 2, 1968: the US release of George Harrison’s Wonderwall Music, the first solo album by any Beatle.

George Harrison Wonderwall Music

It was also the  the first Apple album and quite a contrast to the Beatle movie’s Magical Mystery Tour‘s soundtrack. The music reflected Harrison’s continued involvement with Indian music. There are splashes of Western sounds, too, like “Drilling a Home” or  “Cowboy Museum.” George Harrison himself did not actually play or sing on any tracks

George Harrison Wonderwall Music
back cover of Wonderwall Music album on left and sleeve picture of Harrison on right
George Harrison Wonderwall Music

Harrison’s influence

Keeping in mind Harrison’s Beatle compositions (such as Flying) and you’ll hear his influence. Wonderwall Music also used the production method common at the time of sending sound back and forth between the left and right channels.

Eric Clapton and Ringo Starr make appearances. Clapton, credited as Eddie Clayton, plays lead guitar on ‘Ski-ing’, while Starr (Richie Snare) plays drums.

Also, Peter Tork of the Monkees plays banjo on the album. He and Harrison became friends when the Monkees visited the U.K.

Harrison’s follow up to Wonderwall Music would be his Electronic Sound which taught listeners that George Harrison’s musical tastes were wide and deep.

George Harrison Wonderwall Music

George Harrison Wonderwall Music

Reaction

The NY Times reviewed the Wonderwall album on February 9, 1969. Colin Turner wrote, To my mind it bares the essence of George’s music and exposes the culminating tendencies of his whole song book.

In 2015, Rolling Stone magazine included the album on a list the magazine called: 20 Terrible Debut Albums by Great Artists. The lead sentence of the description read, “The best thing you can say about Wonderwall Music is that it’s probably more historically significant than the LP of experimental twaddle John Lennon released a month later – after all, Oasis never wrote a hit song called Two Virgins.”

George Harrison Wonderwall Music

Wonderwall Music

George Harrison Wonderwall Music

Delaney & Bonnie

Interestingly, exactly a year later, on December 2, 1969, Harrison joined Delaney and Bonnie on stage in Bristol, for his first stage appearance since The Beatles’ final concert on 29 August 1966.

Freed from the attentions of Beatlemania, he was able to be a largely anonymous band member, although he did sing songs including Everybody’s Trying To Be My Baby on at least one occasion.

Harrison stayed on the tour for six dates until it ended. They played two shows each night, in Bristol, Birmingham, Sheffield, Newcastle, Liverpool and Croydon.

George Harrison Wonderwall Music

The Movie

George Harrison Wonderwall Music
Film poster for Wonderwall movie

And in case you were wonder(wall)ing: Wonderwall was a 1968 film by first-time director Joe Massot that starred Jane Birkin, Jack MacGowran, and Iain Quarrier. Neither the movie nor the album are considered worthwhile by most.

Here’s the trailer:

George Harrison Wonderwall Music
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