The Beatles. Their name has become iconic in over 50 years since they rocketed to stardom in the UK and eventually on the international stage. We all know the songs, ones sang by millions in every language across the world; from the beautiful "Here Comes The Sun" to the anthem that is "All You Need Is Love". Their songs, even decades after they were recorded, still resonate messages of peace and love and their own unique quality to all generations.
However, like every artist, The Beatles have their unknown delights. So many songs from their catalogue that are waiting to be discovered by so many people. As an avid Beatle fan, it was difficult to narrow down just 5 but these songs are ones that convey numerous emotions and can be experienced in numerous situations. Here are 5 beautiful but underrated songs by The Beatles:
1. "In My Life"
- Beatles Album: "Rubber Soul "(1965)
This particular track is my all-time favourite Beatles song and while it is a certain favourite among many fans, so many people are actually unaware of it. This was the first song that John Lennon wrote personal lyrics about his own life and it is written as a composition reminiscing on his childhood and teenage years.
This song will take you on a long and magical tour of nostalgia. When hearing the lyrics, you may reflect on people that have came and went, places you've lived and been, even the few that have been there from the beginning and remain. People, places, possessions, things, all of them are carried in this melody through your mind and it'll make you realise how much you truly love them and how thankful you are for their part to play in your life.
2. "Long, Long, Long"- Beatles Album: "The Beatles" [also known as "The White Album"] (1968)
This song was written and performed by George Harrison - my favourite Beatle - during a time period when The Beatles stayed in Rishikesh, India to study transcendal meditation. This song was special as it marked a turning point in George's songwriting and it marked his return to guitar (as his main instrument) after spending two years studying Indian sitar.
According to George: the "you" figure in this song is God. However, this particular song can be interpreted by anyone however they wish. For some people, they may the lyrical meaning as a form of loving reunion with God after a long time. On the other hand, some may describe it as simply a love song about finding someone after being separated or lost.
With a chord pattern based on Bob Dylan's "Sad Eye Lady of the Lowlands", this song is just a wonderful listen and one that could hold a lot of meaning in anyone's life.
3. "Two of Us"
- Beatles Album: "Let It Be" (1970)
This song is a McCartney composition and over time has often been debated by fans and critics alike over it's true inspiration. Paul McCartney stated that it was written as a tribute to his future wife Linda, whereas some see it as a song written about his lifelong friend John Lennon.
Nonetheless, this song could be special to many people in the same manner. Some may see it as a song that reminds them of someone they love romantically, whereas some may see it as a song that reminds them of their greatest friend. The bridge of "You and I have memories/longer than the road that stretches out ahead" will always take the listener to a place that will make them think and love their significant "person" a little bit more than they already do.
In addition, the lovely lyrics are complete with acoustic guitars making the song just that little bit more cheerful too. In my opinion it is one of the "cutest" Beatles songs, a term I'd rarely use but I think for this one it's appropriate.
4. "There's A Place"
- Beatles Album: "Please Please Me" (1963)
This song is the penultimate track on The Beatles' debut album released in 1963. A Lennon & McCartney track which is lyrically based on "Somewhere" from West Side Story and musically, according to John Lennon, was his attempt at writing something like Motown. Regarding the lyrics that many believe to be typically about a love story, according to Paul McCartney: "In our case the place was in the mind, rather than round the back of the stairs for a kiss and a cuddle". While it can be viewed in the latter way, the song does indeed hold a deeper meaning.
Apart from the lyrics (as always), this particular tune is actually quite popular among big Beatles fans for all kinds of reasons. However a prominent one is due to the musical features. The song contains a two-part harmony, with Paul on high and John on low. In addition, the song is complete with a harmonica intro (for all the music theory students, the intro is a major seventh) which therefore makes it altogether a stand out and unique track on the band's debut record.
5. "For No One"
- Beatles Album: "Revolver" (1966)
This final song is another McCartney song, rumoured to have been written about an argument with his then-girlfriend Jane Asher. It is often regarded as one of McCartney's greatest ballads and it is packed full of different musical concepts (for all my fellow music students out there) and instruments, including a clavichord and a French horn solo.
This song can often provide nostalgia for many listeners, often reminding people of arguments they've had with loved ones or even ones they've lost themselves. When you listen a certain person may come into mind or you may know of someone else's tale that will make you wonder "Why did it die?" (Funnily enough, that was the working title of the song). In the end, it is a break-up song and one that remains highly respected among Beatle fans and critics.
And that is where I'll have to draw it to a close. I may put another one of these lists out again in the future with further recommendations but until then, I hope you all have fun listening to The Beatles and their wonderous music. Believe me, they are definitely a band that get even better the more you listen to them.