Monday, December 8, 2008

four thousand holes in blackburn, lancashire

Following John's helpful comment on the previous post reminding me of "Dragged a comb across my head" , I turned to everyone's favourite resource (the internet) to check the rest of the lyrics. Sergeant Pepper's was one of the first albums I ever bought on an LP, well one of the first albums I ever bought. I was at high school and I found it in Target and I think it was like a 20th edition special re-release. In terms of first albums ever bought, let's not count the compilation tape 88 Kix On that included among other things Michael Bolton singing Sittin On the dock of the Bay. We'll leave that in the past shall we? We'll also pretend that I always had wonderful taste in music and never ever went to a John Farnham/ Daryl Braithwaite double bill at the Bundaberg showgrounds while still at school. (In my defence, Bundaberg was a much smaller town back then with limited opportunities for musical entertainments of any kind).

Anyway, even though I listened to Sergeant Pepper's many, many times as a younger person, I discovered now I had remembered A Day in the Life wrongly. It's "Woke up, got out of bed"..not "Got up" as I had thought yesterday during my post on the secret santa buying frenzy. You may not think it makes any difference, but I think it's the small details of lyrics that make the difference between good and great. Anyway, it's a fantastic song (especially with the huge orchestral crescendo bridgey thing) from a fantastic album, so here are the lyrics for your enjoyment. Imagine me singing, or sing along yourself as you read if you like.

I read the news today oh, boy

About a lucky man who made the grade

And though the news was rather sad

Well, i just had to laugh

I saw the photograph

He blew his mind out in a car

He didn't notice that the lights had changed

A crowd of people stood and stared

They'd seen his face before

Nobody was really sure if he was from the house of lords

I saw a film today oh, boy

The english army had just won the war

A crowd of people turned away

But i just had to look

Having read the book

I'd love to turn you on.

Woke up, got out of bed

Dragged a comb across my head

Found my way downstairs and drank a cup

And looking up, i noticed i was late

Found my coat and grabbed my hat

Made the bus in seconds flat

Found my way upstairs and had a smoke

Somebody spoke and i went into a dream


I read the news today oh, boy

Four thousand holes in blackburn, lancashire

And though the holes were rather small

They had to count them all

Now they know how many holes it takes to fill the albert hall

I'd love to turn you on

This may just be the starting point for a Beatles revival marathon. I haven't done that for a while.


John said...

I actually own an original pressing (well, at least one from 1967--I'm not sure how to check for first-edition-ness on LPs) of _Sgt Pepper_. It was my brother's, I hasten to add: I was around in '67, but not taking a critical interest in music at that stage. These days I tend to listen to it as MP3s on the computer.

I'm always intrigued by Simon Frith's description of the album as "a set of well-mannered pop songs", which I guess it was. Sometimes the importance of something as a cultural icon (and musical milestone; technical benchmark, etc.) is disproportionate with its actual quality.

Wendy said...

That's impressive - an original...and sadly, I don't know where my Target purchase is any more...lost in too many moves.
I haven't listened to the whole thing for quite a while (in CD form)...but I don't remember "well-mannered" as coming to mind when I think of it. Depends what it's compared to I guess. Does he mean they're polite? Or is he using "mannered" to mean overly produced? I think it's a great album. But each of the albums have their wonderful moments. Like Abbey Road with the amazingness of the last half where the songs run into each other so beautifully. And I still remember where I was the first time I heard Here comes the sun - and I didn't even know it was the Beatles. Of course the White album has its divine moments as well...probably should really stop now because I love so many of the songs on Revolver as this comment could go on for some time!