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Author Topic: Blackbird: The Civil Rights...Really Paul?  (Read 5870 times)

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Normandie

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Re: Blackbird: The Civil Rights...Really Paul?
« Reply #20 on: May 04, 2016, 06:52:45 PM »

^^^^^

According to Vincent Bugliosi's Helter Skelter, yes.
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zipp

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Re: Blackbird: The Civil Rights...Really Paul?
« Reply #21 on: May 04, 2016, 08:37:33 PM »

Didn't Charles Manson interpret this song as a message to black people to arise against the white establishment?

So you're saying Paul agrees with Charles Manson?

Wow!

Luckily most people no longer remember Manson.
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Hombre_de_ningun_lugar

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Re: Blackbird: The Civil Rights...Really Paul?
« Reply #22 on: May 04, 2016, 09:22:29 PM »

So you're saying Paul agrees with Charles Manson?

Wow!

Luckily most people no longer remember Manson.

I'm sure Paul's own interpretation does not go so far. But I'm mentioning Charles Manson just because it's the first reference I remember about "Blackbird" as a kind of social statement. Perhaps a bit of that interpretation remained in the colective unconscious, even in Paul's.

By the way, why do you think Manson shouldn't be remembered? If we don't want awful things to be repeated, then we shouldn't forget them.
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Normandie

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Re: Blackbird: The Civil Rights...Really Paul?
« Reply #23 on: May 04, 2016, 09:26:23 PM »

So you're saying Paul agrees with Charles Manson?


No, I was saying that Manson had his own unique, and very twisted, interpretation of the White Album. The songs were released first; Manson's crazed perception of them came later.
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Hombre_de_ningun_lugar

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Re: Blackbird: The Civil Rights...Really Paul?
« Reply #24 on: May 04, 2016, 09:33:31 PM »

No, I was saying that Manson had his own unique, and very twisted, interpretation of the White Album. The songs were released first; Manson's crazed perception of them came later.

I think zipp was talking to me, but I agree with you.

As I said, the only relation between Manson's and Paul's interpretations would be the sort of social statement; but that doesn't mean that both interpretations are the same, of course. I thought this didn't need to be clarified.
« Last Edit: May 04, 2016, 09:35:39 PM by Hombre_de_ningun_lugar »
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stevie

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Re: Blackbird: The Civil Rights...Really Paul?
« Reply #25 on: May 04, 2016, 10:51:16 PM »

Didn't Charles Manson interpret this song as a message to black people to arise against the white establishment?

Yep. And most of the other songs on The White Album. Helter Skelter was his term for the actual Black revolution against whitey

Sosrry i posted this before reading the above comments lol
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zipp

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Re: Blackbird: The Civil Rights...Really Paul?
« Reply #26 on: May 06, 2016, 09:35:21 PM »

No, I was saying that Manson had his own unique, and very twisted, interpretation of the White Album. The songs were released first; Manson's crazed perception of them came later.

Yes, but Paul's current interpretation of his own song, saying it's about the fight for black freedom, in some way resembles Manson's.

And when I said ' Luckily most people no longer remember Manson.' I meant it's lucky for Paul because who would want to be associated in any way with this dangerous psychopath?

But this Manson debate is a bit of a digression. The main question is still : At what point did Paul start saying Blackbird was a song about civil rights? Does anybody have a quote from the sixties or seventies where he says this?

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Hombre_de_ningun_lugar

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Re: Blackbird: The Civil Rights...Really Paul?
« Reply #27 on: May 07, 2016, 07:13:22 PM »

Even if Paul's and Manson's interpretations were the same, that black people had to fight for their freedom, the main difference would be how to do it. Manson's reaction was murdering the white establishment, and I'm sure Paul would never suggest that way.

But I tend to agree with zipp. Although "Blackbird" had already been related to civil rights in the past, not only by Manson, apparently Paul brought this interpretation too many years after. Actually I think it's valid for him to adopt the interpretation he wants, even if he didn't mean that when he wrote the song (but in that case he should clarify this).

In fact I do the same, I don't care too much about writer's original interpretations of songs, I just take the message that means something to my life. Words are words, they don't change, but the meaning always depends on the listener, especially when the lyrics are vague, as it usually happens in songs.
« Last Edit: May 07, 2016, 07:16:26 PM by Hombre_de_ningun_lugar »
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zipp

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Re: Blackbird: The Civil Rights...Really Paul?
« Reply #28 on: May 07, 2016, 08:26:20 PM »

But I tend to agree with zipp. Although "Blackbird" had already been related to civil rights in the past, not only by Manson, apparently Paul brought this interpretation too many years after. Actually I think it's valid for him to adopt the interpretation he wants, even if he didn't mean that when he wrote the song (but in that case he should clarify this).

OK. I've checked with Many Years From Now and Paul already says there that he chose the title "Blackbird" instead of "Black Woman Living in Little Rock" so he already referenced Little Rock at that time.

So I now tend to believe him.

He also explains that in his songs he usually wouldn't be specific so that the bird became "symbolic, so you could apply it to your particular problem". I think this is true of other Beatle compositions. When they came out nobody knew what Hey Jude was about or Norwegian Wood was about etc.

But Many Years From Now is from 1997. Concerning Blackbird did Paul mention civil rights or Little Rock before then and if not why not?
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KEROUAC

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Re: Blackbird: The Civil Rights...Really Paul?
« Reply #29 on: May 16, 2016, 03:07:13 PM »

But Many Years From Now is from 1997. Concerning Blackbird did Paul mention civil rights or Little Rock before then and if not why not?

Extactly my point
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oldbrownshoe

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Re: Blackbird: The Civil Rights...Really Paul?
« Reply #30 on: May 17, 2016, 09:14:58 PM »

Born 1942 (very important, that bit).
Beatle.
In London - in the 60s.
Martin Luther King killed in April '68.
Song called.....erm.....'Blackbird'.....written, recorded and released by the end of the year.
If any person, let alone a Beatles fan, thought it 'didn't' have anything to do with civil rights.....really?
Wow!
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Klang

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Re: Blackbird: The Civil Rights...Really Paul?
« Reply #31 on: May 17, 2016, 09:28:46 PM »


Could be. Not so obvious based on the lyrics, but I suppose there are a few words that can relate to this matter. Maybe Paul didn't want to be overtly political with it, in which case he did a good job with it.

 :)

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zipp

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Re: Blackbird: The Civil Rights...Really Paul?
« Reply #32 on: May 17, 2016, 09:32:11 PM »

Born 1942 (very important, that bit).
Beatle.
In London - in the 60s.
Martin Luther King killed in April '68.
Song called.....erm.....'Blackbird'.....written, recorded and released by the end of the year.
If any person, let alone a Beatles fan, thought it 'didn't' have anything to do with civil rights.....really?
Wow!

You haven't answered the main question. Why did Paul never say this song was about civil rights for nearly thirty years?

He told us all about the story behind Hey Jude and Julian Lennon and the newspaper article behind She's Leaving Home, for example, but nothing about this song except that it was inspired by a real blackbird.

So your assumptions are just that. Applying after-the-fact political correctness to something we can legitimately doubt.



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oldbrownshoe

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Re: Blackbird: The Civil Rights...Really Paul?
« Reply #33 on: May 17, 2016, 09:46:21 PM »

In the turbulent times of 1968, you're doing him a grave dis-service if you don't think that, by releasing a song called 'Blackbird' by the biggest group in the world, he wasn't, even obliquely, referencing civil rights.

You must think he was really thick.
We're not talking about the music scene of 2016! 
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zipp

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Re: Blackbird: The Civil Rights...Really Paul?
« Reply #34 on: May 17, 2016, 11:18:23 PM »

In the turbulent times of 1968, you're doing him a grave dis-service if you don't think that, by releasing a song called 'Blackbird' by the biggest group in the world, he wasn't, even obliquely, referencing civil rights.

You must think he was really thick.
We're not talking about the music scene of 2016!

I actually think Paul was too intelligent to do anything so obvious in 1968 as to write a song solely about civil rights.

Your assumptions are simplistic.

Nobody at the time said this song was about civil rights. NOBODY!

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Hombre_de_ningun_lugar

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Re: Blackbird: The Civil Rights...Really Paul?
« Reply #35 on: May 18, 2016, 12:14:57 AM »

If we talk about a metaphorical meaning, I think that the most easy interpretation is that the "blackbird" could be any person and the "broken wings/sunken eyes" could be any problem. I think relating this song only to black people just because of the color of the bird is too simplistic, unimaginative and even racist.
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Hello Goodbye

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Re: Blackbird: The Civil Rights...Really Paul?
« Reply #36 on: May 18, 2016, 01:11:44 AM »

Of all the statements made by Paul regarding Blackbird, the only one I'm certain of is his explanation that Johann Sebastian Bach's BourrĂ©e in E minor inspired his guitar picking style for this song as well as Michelle earlier on.  He used a two-finger picking style with simultaneous picking of bass and treble strings.

Here's how Ian Buchanan taught me to play the Bourrée...


<a href="http://youtu.be/4TKzNYayMHQ" target="_blank" class="aeva_link bbc_link new_win">http://youtu.be/4TKzNYayMHQ</a>
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Hello Goodbye

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Re: Blackbird: The Civil Rights...Really Paul?
« Reply #37 on: May 18, 2016, 01:38:20 AM »

Nobody at the time said this song was about civil rights. NOBODY!

If we talk about a metaphorical meaning, I think that the most easy interpretation is that the "blackbird" could be any person and the "broken wings/sunken eyes" could be any problem.

Right.  In 1968 we thought they were more "clues."    ;D
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oldbrownshoe

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Re: Blackbird: The Civil Rights...Really Paul?
« Reply #38 on: May 18, 2016, 03:32:22 PM »

Nobody said the song was about civil rights in 1968 because, obviously, if you as a Beatle in 1968, that's '1968', release a song called 'Blackbird', no one has to say it's about civil rights, even if, on Paul's part, it is an (subtle) implication and not written large.

It's like declaring, 'You know that 'Merry Xmas Everybody' by Slade? It's about Christmas.'
Or.....erm.....maybe you didn't know it was about Christmas?
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KEROUAC

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Re: Blackbird: The Civil Rights...Really Paul?
« Reply #39 on: May 18, 2016, 03:39:45 PM »

Nobody said the song was about civil rights in 1968 because, obviously, if you as a Beatle in 1968, that's '1968', release a song called 'Blackbird', no one has to say it's about civil rights, even if, on Paul's part, it is an (subtle) implication and not written large.

It's like declaring, 'You know that 'Merry Xmas Everybody' by Slade? It's about Christmas.'
Or.....erm.....maybe you didn't know it was about Christmas?

So you're saying because it has "black" in the title it must be about black people. How about Baby's in Black?
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