Hash’s Faves: “I Feel Fine”

20 Aug


TI_Feel_Finehis week’s pick is a perfect little gem of a pop song by The Beatles: “I Feel Fine,” written by Lennon and McCartney. This was the A-side of their 1964 single, backed with ”She’s A Woman” (it was later included on their album ”Beatles ’65”; in those days albums were often just a collection of singles and filler). It’s just the Boys — John Lennon on guitar and vocals; Paul McCartney on bass and vocals; George Harrison on guitar and vocals; and Ringo Starr on drums.

This record is evidently the first recording to purposely feature feedback; the story is that John had leaned his semi-acoustic guitar up against an amp in the studio which, naturally, resulted in howling feedback. The Boys were just starting to feel their oats as studio auteurs and immediately asked producer George Martin if that sound could be incorporated into the song. Ringo has also said that his drum rhythm was based on the Latin-ish groove of Ray Charles’ “What’d I Say.” Although harmonically it’s a pretty simple tune, they do some deceptive things. And I love the vocal parts (I tend to like the songs where John sings lead simply because he’s so human; singing along in the car with Paul can be daunting).

You can listen to it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TE5hoaij79U

This post is reprinted from News From The Trenches, a weekly newsletter of commentary from the viewpoint of a working musician published by Chicago bassist Steve Hashimoto. If you’d like to start receiving it, just let him know by emailing him at steven.hashimoto@sbcglobal.net.

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