BY BRYN TAYLOR //
We all know the Beatles: the prolific 1960s rock band that made its way from Liverpool to the entire world. Regarded as one of the most influential bands of all time, it is no question that the Beatles were masters at creating Frisson for their listeners. Following the release of “The Long and Winding Road” in 1970, the Beatles dispersed, but none of the members stopped creating music. Today, we will dive into three songs, each written by a different member of the Beatles following their breakup. Sadly, Ringo will be left out. (Don’t come for me. Unless you truly want Frisson to be reviewing “You’re Sixteen You’re Beautiful (and You’re Mine)”? Yep. That’s what I thought.) Alright! Let’s get into it.
To begin, we will be looking at a single from the album Back to the Egg. In 1979, Paul McCartney’s band Wings released their 8th most popular song “Arrow Through Me”. Unlike most of the band’s music, which follows a classic rock style, “Arrow Through Me” is more pop oriented, using synths, jumpy bass, and a light keyboard line. The song also uses sparse orchestrative moments, where it ties in trumpets, making it resemble that of a Stevie Wonder or Duke Ellington classic. Steve Holley, the drummer of Wings, turns the song’s auditory appeal to 11 by using a polyrhythm: layering two or more rhythms on top of one another, also known as a “cross-rhythm”. The song also weaves in layered vocals, creating an essence of an angelic choir. The entire song is light and bouncy, as if the listener is floating through space with Paul McCartney and a big brass band.
Although this is not my favorite Lennon song, I feel that if we are discussing Frisson, we need to discuss the timely pop-rock classic, “Beautiful Boy (Darling Boy)” from John Lennon and Yoko Ono’s album Double Fantasy. The song, although lyrically simplistic, is composed with grace, elegance, and paternal love. The song begins with the chiming of three bells, followed by soft guitar and windchimes. Immediately, the listener is brought into a fantasia lullabye. The lyrics are written for Lennon and Oko’s only son, Sean. Initially, Lennon seems to be calming his son after waking from a nightmare, while then transforming the lyrics to simple fatherly advice. Lines such as “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.” have grown extremely famous, even after the song’s popularity died down. Following his death, Lennon’s fatherly lullabye became a song for his worshiping fans as well. Lennon composes the song with the use of steelpan, which gives it an island theme, making it an extremely unique sound, especially for the traditional rock artist.
I am a huge George Harrison fan, so choosing a single song to review for Frisson felt like picking a favorite child. I finally settled on reviewing “Love Comes to Everyone” from his 1979 album, George Harrison. The song is one of the most optimistic and carefree songs written by Harrison, exuding an extremely enjoyable melody. The song was written after Harrison had married his second wife, who gave birth to his son Dhani. Harrison has explained this song was created at a time of complete domestic happiness- which the song emulates very well, making the listener fill with ecstasy and invincibility. The peaceful and uplifting guitar intro is done by none other than Eric Clapton, clearly setting the song up for musical success. The song did have mixed reviews. Allmusic critic Richard Ginnell felt the song was nothing more than a “treadmill tune with greeting-card verses”, however, most feel that its relaxed, carefree pop
sound is not only exuberant but contains such contagious happiness, it is impossible to frown while listening to it.
As always, here’s the link for the playlist!