We’re starting a new series of articles here at Hero Habit devoted to some of the most self-indulgent music ever committed to tape. We’re calling the series, in case you couldn’t tell from the title, “Five Lamest Songs” and we’re starting with a look at a popular group from England called The Beatles.
When we say “lamest” we don’t necessarily mean worst. In fact, some of these songs may be favorites of yours (if you’re lame) or hits on the radio. To that end, there may be a handful of songs that we think are totally lame on their own but work within context of the album so we’re not including them here because they serve a larger purpose.
So, without further ado, we bring you the five lamest Beatles songs of all time. Enjoy.
5. She’s A Woman
There’s not a single thing I like about this song. It opens with jarring guitars that sound almost out of tune and it features some of the laziest lyrics that Paul McCartney had ever written (to that point).
“My love don’t give me presents
I know that she’s no peasant.”
Is there some deep meaning in that line or is it, as I believe, simply that presents and peasants rhymes? Come on, Paul, you’re better than that. As bad as that line is, and we hear it several times during the song, the chorus (it’s actually more of a bridge than a chorus) starts with,
“She’s a woman who understands
She’s a woman who loves her man.”
What does she understand? That line is meaningless but sometimes I can forgive a meaningless line if it’s simply to serve as a rhyme for the next brilliant line but the next line here is stupid so the whole thing is without meaning.
Throw in a half-hearted guitar solo, a refrain that is simply yelling the title of the song (I hate it here but love it in Hey Bulldog) and some jangly piano that was clearly added to make the song “go somewhere” and you’ve got a tune that I skip each and every time I hear it.
4. Love Me Do
Don’t start sending me hate mail yet. I already told you, not all of these songs were going to be bad, just lame and you can’t tell me, no matter how much you enjoy it, that this song isn’t lame. This is the greatest rock band of all time playing the wimpiest song ever recorded. Love Me Do, because that’s a phrase teenage girls have ever said, is a castrated mess of a song from start to finish.
It opens with a harmonica intro, which too many of their songs of that era did, accompanied by acoustic guitars strumming a pattern you could learn on your first lesson and Paul playing what could possibly be the most boring bass line he’s ever written. This song has no balls and it appears on the same album as Twist and Shout, Please Please Me and I Saw Her Standing There, maybe the three biggest balled songs of their early work.
If the Beatles had written this song for their third album, it would have been trashed but, I suppose, this was a good gateway song for the heavier stuff like I Want to Hold Your Hand.
3. All Together Now
This tune is catchy and was recorded to feel loose and jam based, which it very well may have been. I don’t automatically hate this song and the chorus is sing-songy enough to warrant the occasional listen but it does feature one of my most despised songwriting tropes of them all, counting and singing the alphabet.
I can’t think of many songs that do both but this one covers 1,2,3,4 and a,b,c,d and, as the cherry on the sundae, they list some random colors, too. Lyrically, this song hits every example of “things you shouldn’t do when writing a song” short of rhyming love and dove and for that, all goodwill that the catchy party atmosphere brings goes right out the window.
2. Wild Honey Pie
If this song doesn’t qualify for being the most self-indulgent, everything-I-do-is-worthy-of-release song ever recorded, I’d love to hear the songs that do. At less than a minute long, I was reluctant to put it on the list but it is one of the few tracks in the entire Beatles catalog that, for me, has zero redeeming qualities. Even the song at number one on this list I can make an argument for but this is pure drivel in it’s most obnoxious form.
Disjointed, poorly tuned guitars and affected vocals abound on this track and what would have been a fun outtake for the Anthology project 40 years later ended up taking a full minute of space off of one of the most iconic albums of all time. An album so filled with greatness that the leftovers from the era were Hey Jude, Revolution, Lady Madonna, and Not Guilty.
This song is crap.
1. Revolution 9
As I alluded to in my Wild Honey Pie rant, I can actually make a case for this song. There are musical and artistic merits to this work and, in certain circles, it has a place and a purpose. On one of the most iconic albums of all time, we could do without it.
The “song” is over eight minutes long and, I guarantee, is skipped far more often than it is played. The fact that it is followed by a lushly orchestrated lullaby sung by Ringo only solidifies my view that, for most people, the White Album ends with Cry Baby Cry.
In 1968, the year of this album’s release, the Beatles released Hey Jude, Lady Madonna, The Inner Light, and Revolution as singles which never appeared on an album and they completed recordings of Not Guilty and What’s the New Mary Jane which were never released by the band in any form until the Anthology in the 90’s. Are you telling me that Revolution 9 was a stronger option than Not Guilty?
The Beatles, by this time, were aware of their impact and their legacy and were also aware of the fact that their music was being taken seriously by scholars. This track could only appear on this album because it is so varied and, I think, they saw it as an opportunity to prove what deep artists they were. If you believe that the other Beatles didn’t want this on the album but it made it on anyway, you’re crazy. There were enough Beatles votes to veto Not Guilty from the album, after all.
I encourage you to listen to this track with headphones on in a dark room in the middle of the night. You’ll thank me later.