Details about THE BEATLES: "NORWEGIAN WOOD" (FOR JUKEBOXES ONLY!) RARE!THE BEATLES: "NORWEGIAN WOOD" (FOR JUKEBOXES ONLY!) RARE! See original listing
Sep 21, 2013 18:16:14 PDT
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York, Pennsylvania, United States
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"NORWEGIAN WOOD" B/W "IF I NEEDED SOMEONE"
This 45 is very sought after as it's used as a replacement for the green version of the Beatles colored vinyl series by collectors.
In 1992, Capitol released the single Love Me Do / P.S. I Love You as a single from their CEMA* Special Markets Division, with "For Jukeboxes Only!" printed on the label. Two years later, in 1994 they issued a series of 15 titles, followed by another series of 15 in 1996. All discs in the second series of juke-box singles had sales of 15,000 - 20,000 pieces. The first series, in fact, sold quite a bit more than the second, sales of those discs range typically in the 22,000 range.
"Norwegian Wood (This Bird Has Flown)" is a song by The Beatles which first appeared on the 1965 album Rubber Soul. While credited to Lennon/McCartney, it was primarily written by John Lennon, though Paul McCartney contributed to the middle eight section. It is notable as the first example of a rock band actually playing the sitar in one of their songs; it was played by George Harrison. The song is a lilting acoustic ballad featuring Lennon's lead vocal and signature Beatle harmonies in the middle eight.
"Norwegian Wood" was one of several songs on Rubber Soul in which the singer faces an antagonistic relationship with a woman. In direct contrast to earlier Beatles songs such as "She Loves You" and "I Want to Hold Your Hand", the songs on Rubber Soul were considerably darker in their outlook towards romantic relationships.
The exotic instrumentation and oblique lyric represented one of the first indications to fans of the expanding musical vocabulary and experimental approach that the group was rapidly adopting.
It was Harrison, who would later be strongly influenced by transcendental meditation and eventually embrace Krishna consciousness, who decided on using a sitar when the Beatles recorded the song on the 12th and 21st of October, 1965. As he recounted later: “We were waiting to shoot the restaurant scene [in Help! the movie] ... where the guy gets thrown in the soup and there were a few Indian musicians playing in the background. I remember picking up the sitar and trying to hold it and thinking, "This is a funny sound." It was an incidental thing, but somewhere down the line I began to hear Ravi Shankar's name.... So I went and bought a Ravi record; put it on and it hit a certain spot in me that I can't explain, but it seemed very familiar to me. It just called on me.... I bought a cheap sitar from a shop called India Craft in London. I hadn't really figured out what to do with it. But when we were working on "Norwegian Wood" it just needed something. It was quite spontaneous ... I just picked it up and found the notes and just played it. We miked it up and put it on and it just seemed to hit the spot. The Beatles Anthology ”
McCartney said the final line of the song indicates that the singer burned the home of the girl. As he explained: “Peter Asher [brother of McCartney's then-girlfriend Jane Asher] had just done his room out in wood, and a lot of people were decorating their places in wood. Norwegian wood. It was pine, really, just cheap pine. But it's not as good a title, is it, "Cheap Pine"? It was a little parody, really, on those kind of girls who, when you'd get back to their flat, there would be a lot of Norwegian wood. It was completely imaginary from my point of view, but not from John's. It was based on an affair he had. She made him sleep in the bath and then, finally, in the last verse, I had this idea to set the Norwegian wood on fire as a revenge. She led him on and said, "You'd better sleep in the bath." And in our world, that meant the guy having some sort of revenge, so it meant burning the place down....”
The song was apparently inspired by Lennon's extramarital flings. Ironically, he wrote it while he was on a holiday with his wife, Cynthia, at St. Moritz in the Swiss Alps. They were joined by the Beatles' producer George Martin, who had injured himself early in the holiday, and his wife. Martin recalled:
It was during this time that John was writing songs for Rubber Soul, and one of the songs he composed in the hotel bedroom, while we were all gathered around, nursing my broken foot, was a little ditty he would play to me on his acoustic guitar. The song was "Norwegian Wood".
When asked what the lyrics were about, Martin answered: “My wife is going to give me a hard time for saying this. It was one of John's indiscretions. I remember we were sitting at the veranda outside our hotel rooms in St. Moritz and John was playing at his guitar and working out the text: "I once had a girl, or should I say, she once had me." He felt that Cynthia had tricked him to marry her.” Martin referred to the words as "a very bitter little story".
Lennon said of the song: "I was trying to write about an affair, so it was very gobbledegooky. I was trying to write about an affair without letting my wife know I was having one. I was sort of writing from my experiences ... girls' flats, things like that." He also said:
"Norwegian Wood" is my song completely. It was about an affair I was having. I was very careful and paranoid because I didn't want my wife, Cyn, to know that there really was something going on outside of the household. I'd always had some kind of affairs going on, so I was trying to be sophisticated in writing about an affair ... but in such a smoke-screen way that you couldn't tell. But I can't remember any specific woman it had to do with.”
Lennon acknowledged being strongly influenced by Bob Dylan during this time period, and the rather opaque lyrics of "Norwegian Wood" seem to reflect this. Dylan responded with "4th Time Around", a song with a similar melody, subject matter and lyrical delivery. Rock journalists and even Lennon himself felt it to be a rather pointed parody of "Wood" (some even went as far as to think the song's closing line—"And I, I never took much/I never asked for your crutch/Now don't ask for mine"—was directed toward Lennon), though Lennon later told his biographer that he considered Dylan's effort to be more a playful homage.
Rolling Stone ranked it #83 on their list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time
"If I Needed Someone" is a song written by George Harrison. Versions by The Beatles and by The Hollies appeared simultaneously, both being released in the UK on December 3, 1965. The Hollies version appeared on a single; The Beatles recording of the song first appeared in the UK on the 1965 album Rubber Soul (see 1965 in music) and was later included in the 1966 U.S. release Yesterday...and Today.
The Beatles version was recorded on October 16 and October 18, 1965, the basic track being recorded right after sessions for "Day Tripper".
The song was heavily influenced by the music of The Byrds. In a 2004 radio interview with the BBC in London, Roger McGuinn confirmed that Harrison had sent a tape recording of the song to him in Los Angeles before it was released on record. Harrison did this to show McGuinn that the guitar riff he had used in "If I Needed Someone" was based on McGuinn's own riff in "The Bells of Rhymney." The song's introduction and coda are also very similar to those of The Byrds' song. Coincidentally, The Byrds' own use of electric 12-string guitar was influenced by George Harrison's use of the instrument in the film A Hard Day's Night.
"If I Needed Someone" was the only Harrison composition played during any of the Beatles' tours; The Quiet Beatle otherwise only sang covers onstage. "If I Needed Someone" is included in the Beatles' Tokyo concerts in July 1966; the documentary The Compleat Beatles used a clip from the Beatles' haggard performance of the song on stage in Tokyo as illustration of how the band was growing tired of touring. The song was also performed on the Beatles' very last concert in Candlestick Park on August 29, 1966. It is suspected, but not confirmed, that "If I Needed Someone" was performed at every Beatles concert in 1966.
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