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Author Topic: Ram: As good as a Beatles album?  (Read 5411 times)

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alexis

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Ram: As good as a Beatles album?
« on: February 05, 2010, 08:34:12 PM »

I've always thought so, it's got such a large number of great songs, and it's production sounds just like George Martin (especially "Uncle Albert").

What do you folks think?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ram_%28album%29

Paul & Linda McCartney; Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey


Paul McCartney - Monkberry Moon Delight


Paul McCartney - The Back Seat Of My Car (1971 - Ram Album)


etc. !
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Alexis

Penny Lane

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Re: Ram: As good as a Beatles album?
« Reply #1 on: February 05, 2010, 09:12:50 PM »

Hmmm...I dunno. Ram is good but it doesn't "touch" me the same way a Beatles album would. I guess it's because J, G, and R aren't there...if you want to compare Ram to a Beatles album, then their absence is strongly felt.

But yes, there are some wonderful songs on the album, "Dear Boy" being my favorite. I can imagine it as a Beatles song (or a Beach Boys song due to the harmonies).

DEAR BOY Paul McCartney
« Last Edit: February 05, 2010, 09:14:43 PM by Penny Lane »
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maywitch

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Re: Ram: As good as a Beatles album?
« Reply #2 on: February 07, 2010, 06:13:50 AM »

I think Ram is fantastic.  I love this album.  I don't know about being as good, but then again really, it's just different, not worse necessarily.  I love Too Many People, Uncle Albert, Monkberry Moon Delight, Dear Boy especially.
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alexis

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Re: Ram: As good as a Beatles album?
« Reply #3 on: February 07, 2010, 08:52:28 PM »

I do agree, it's not a Beatles album, so it's hard to say it's as good as one. I remember though, before I really started getting into the Beatles, I thought "Uncle Albert" was a Beatles song. Maybe the way I should have said it was, I think so many of these songs could have fit so nicely on a Beatles album without "standing out".

One of my favorite is "Back Seat of My Car""

Paul McCartney - The Back Seat Of My Car (1971 - Ram Album)

Lots of piccies for you Penny Lane!
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Penny Lane

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Re: Ram: As good as a Beatles album?
« Reply #4 on: February 07, 2010, 09:11:58 PM »

Paul McCartney - The Back Seat Of My Car (1971 - Ram Album)
Lots of piccies for you Penny Lane!


Oh, you do know the way to my heart. ;) That is a really good song, BTW!
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DaveRam

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Re: Ram: As good as a Beatles album?
« Reply #5 on: February 08, 2010, 12:47:45 AM »

Not sure if RAM is as good as a Beatles album , but it's always had a feel of Abbey Road to me .
Think the other early solo albums Imagine , Ringo and All Things Must Pass also have a Beatles feel .
It must have been hard to shake off the Beatles mode of working and thinking , which is why all the solo albums up to around 1973 have a Beatles feel to me .
They took their Beatles voices with them when they went their separate ways which also gives the early solo albums a strong Beatles feel vocally at least .
Think Abbey Road had quite an effect on Paul musically all his solo albums up too Band On The Run seemed to be aiming for that sound , only Wild Life seems a departure ?
 
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tkitna

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Re: Ram: As good as a Beatles album?
« Reply #6 on: February 08, 2010, 01:44:23 AM »

As good as a Beatles album? Hell, its better than half of them if you ask me. There isnt a bad song on it. Besides 'All Things Must Pass' (and that has to do with quantity as much as quality), RAM is the best solo effort easily in my opinion. If you sit down and really listen to 'Uncle Albert',,,,,I mean really soak it in,,,that song is a masterpiece. Brilliant.

Almighty Doer of Stuff

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Re: Ram: As good as a Beatles album?
« Reply #7 on: February 08, 2010, 11:36:17 PM »

"Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey" is okay I guess, but it seems like Paul has a habit of stringing together unfinished songs and putting them on his albums. It worked wonderfully for Abbey Road, but every time I hear one from his solo albums it just kind of annoys me. I think once was enough, and the epic production and the fact that it was an unusual idea in Abbey Road was as much, if not more, a part of its success as the songs themselves. When he does it again and again in his light pop fashion, it just doesn't work as well for me.

He also has a habit of writing nonsense songs. While the sound of his voice on Monkberry Moon Delight is interesting, ultimately the backing music is light pop, and not particularly interesting light pop at that. Don't get me wrong, I like Paul's light pop mostly, but Monkberry Moon Delight seems to try to carry itself solely on the weird vocal technique, and I don't particularly like it. As far as Paul's nonsense songs go, I prefer Soily because the backing music is interesting in addition to the vocals, but I wish he wouldn't write so many of them. It worked for John's "I Am The Walrus" because it was not only unusual, but also structurally, melodically, and musically interesting in all parts of it. Plus, as I've explained in its thread in Songs, it actually ISN'T nonsense. It just seems that way at first listen. When Paul does it, it really is nonsense.

I don't like Back Seat Of My Car. I'm not entirely sure why, but it just never clicked with me.

If the rest of the album is like that, I'm afraid it's probably not as good as a Beatles album, in my opinion. I don't own it, though, so I can't say for sure.
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I_Will

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Re: Ram: As good as a Beatles album?
« Reply #8 on: February 08, 2010, 11:42:04 PM »

I love RAM (it is probably my favorite Beatle solo album if I really think about it), but I wouldn't say it's as good as a Beatles album simply because it's made by only 1/4 of The Beatles. I mean really, it's hard to compare to all four of them together.
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DaveRam

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Re: Ram: As good as a Beatles album?
« Reply #9 on: February 09, 2010, 12:30:58 AM »

Think RAM is very much a cannabis and love album and i see it more whimsical than nonsensical .
But Abbey Road doe's hang heavy over it , having said that it's still my favourite solo album it always puts me in a wonderful place mentally even now without the drugs .
And vocally it's both warm and adventurous even Linda sounds good .
Much could have been done with those early post Beatles songs pity they did'nt stick together two more great Beatles albums could have emerged .
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maywitch

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Re: Ram: As good as a Beatles album?
« Reply #10 on: February 11, 2010, 08:09:15 PM »

I don't think Monkberry Moon Delight is nonsense and I think it's pretty interesting musically.  Also I think Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey really works together, in fact I think it's pretty brilliant.  I mean classical composers work that way all the time.  There isn't anything "lesser" about the components of a song coming at different times.
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tkitna

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Re: Ram: As good as a Beatles album?
« Reply #11 on: February 12, 2010, 12:55:46 AM »

I've said it before, I dont care if songs dont make sense. As long as its pleasing to the ear, who cares? Nobody set ground rules down to how songs should be written.

DaveRam

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Re: Ram: As good as a Beatles album?
« Reply #12 on: February 12, 2010, 09:54:03 AM »

Paul clearly smoked a lot of pot (Cannabis) during The Beatles and his solo career it's therefore not surprising that some of his more whimsical surreal songs like Uncle Albert & Monkberry Moon Delight don't make sense .
Just as John's LSD songs don't make a lot of sense .
Paul's pot songs may not be as literate as John's drug songs but they come from the same place a drug induced state ?
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Bobber

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Re: Ram: As good as a Beatles album?
« Reply #13 on: February 12, 2010, 09:54:58 AM »

Funny that people tend to search for deeper meanings in John's nonsense songs and not in Paul's.
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DaveRam

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Re: Ram: As good as a Beatles album?
« Reply #14 on: February 12, 2010, 10:41:27 AM »

Funny that people tend to search for deeper meanings in John's nonsense songs and not in Paul's.

That's true Bobber , Paul's pot smoking grannie songs just don't get the same respect as John's drug addled offerings .
I just view it all as gobbledegook now , think both of them did to many drugs , i now wonder how much better both could have been had they been clean more often .
Paul lyrically as been much sharper on his recent albums which kinda of shows the benefit of a clear mind .
Having said that i like what both did when they were off their heads it's still interesting music   8)
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tkitna

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Re: Ram: As good as a Beatles album?
« Reply #15 on: February 12, 2010, 11:34:19 AM »

i now wonder how much better both could have been had they been clean more often .

It could have been worse. I'll accept the music that came from the drug use.

Quote
Paul lyrically as been much sharper on his recent albums which kinda of shows the benefit of a clear mind .

Care to site some examples?

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Re: Ram: As good as a Beatles album?
« Reply #16 on: February 12, 2010, 03:43:41 PM »

I'm not criticizing Paul for writing nonsense. I like a bit of nonsense occasionally. I'm criticizing him for writing nonsense lyrics (very little effort, relative to what usually makes a song interesting), putting them over simple backing tracks (also very little effort, relative to what usually makes a song interesting) and then trying to carry the song strictly on the funny voice. There's nothing interesting to me, personally, in MMD, and that's my criticism.

As for Uncle Albert, it's more interesting musically than MMD, with melodies and layers and stuff, but the song still doesn't make any cohesive sense. There's nothing wrong with stitching together unfinished songs. A Day In The Life is one of my favorite songs, and although it was two unfinished songs stitched together, it had a cohesive meaning. Songs don't even need a cohesive meaning all the time, though. My beef with Paul is that he stitches unrelated songs together too frequently, and it seems lazy to me. He knows people will listen to anything he puts out, so he banks on that.
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I_Will

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Re: Ram: As good as a Beatles album?
« Reply #17 on: February 12, 2010, 03:48:34 PM »

^^But people actually like the songs, then what's the problem?
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Kevin

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Re: Ram: As good as a Beatles album?
« Reply #18 on: February 12, 2010, 04:30:28 PM »

^^But people actually like the songs, then what's the problem?
But not everybody does, me included too sometimes. I criticise  both John and George's solo efforts, and to me Paul isn't above it either. I agree with AMDOS that Paul's work can sometimes come across lazy and unfinished, which is weird for a man who seemed to be aspiring (and damn near reaching) songwriting and production perfection from 66 to 69. John has made thinly produced, depressing repetitive material and George could be downright boring. Paul can be annoyingly lazy and trite.
My take is that none of them are as good on their own. The Beatles were  unique (as far as I can work out) in having two magnificent songwriters 9rather than a partnership like Jagger/Richards or one dominating the other like Waters/Gilmour.
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AngeloMysterioso

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Re: Ram: As good as a Beatles album?
« Reply #19 on: February 12, 2010, 04:32:48 PM »

On my part, I preferred and still prefer Ram over the (next) Wings’ Wild life (that I have always found uneven, boring if not squarely dissapointing). And yes, more or less in the continuity of McCartney (1970), Ram offers, in my view, some Beatles flavours, melodically speaking : I do remember, back then, noticing it, here and there, listening to it with friends. But I would never go as far as thinking if-I’d-only-closed-my-eyes-and-stopped-thinking-for-a-minute-I’d-almost-fooled-myself-that-it-would-be-a-Beatles-album kind of thing. No way. sorry.
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