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Author Topic: Song Of The Week - Fixing A Hole  (Read 359 times)

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Kangaroo Kev

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Song Of The Week - Fixing A Hole
« on: August 13, 2014, 11:57:02 AM »

In a 1968 interview, McCartney said that the song was "about the hole in the road where the rain gets in, a good old analogy—the hole in your make-up which lets the rain in and stops your mind from going where it will." He went on to say that the following lines were about fans who hung around outside his home day and night, and whose actions he found off-putting:

See the people standing there
who disagree, and never win
And wonder why they don't get in my door


The first of two recording sessions for the song was at Regent Sound Studio in London on 9 February 1967 in three takes. Regent was used because EMI's Abbey Road studios were not available that night. This was the first time that the Beatles used a British studio other than Abbey Road for an EMI recording. Overdubs were recorded on 21 Feb 1967 at EMI studios Abbey Road.

The lead vocal was recorded at the same time as the rhythm track, a change from their post-1964 approach of overdubbing the vocal.

Paul has also stated about the recording: "The funny thing about that was the night when we were going to record it, at Regent Sound Studios at Tottenham Court Road, I brought a guy who was Jesus. A guy arrived at my front gate and I said, ‘Yes? Hello’ because I always used to answer it to everyone. If they were boring I would say, ‘Sorry, no,’ and they generally went away. This guy said, ‘I’m Jesus Christ.’ I said, ‘Oop,’ slightly shocked. I said, ‘Well, you’d better come in then.’ I thought, Well, it probably isn’t. But if he is, I’m not going to be the one to turn him away. So I gave him a cup of tea and we just chatted and I asked, ‘Why do you think you are Jesus?’ There were a lot of casualties about then. We used to get a lot of people who were maybe insecure or going through emotional breakdowns or whatever. So I said, ‘I’ve got to go to a session but if you promise to be very quiet and just sit in a corner, you can come.’ So he did, he came to the session and he did sit very quietly and I never saw him after that. I introduced him to the guys. They said, ‘Who’s this?’ I said, ‘He’s Jesus Christ.’ We had a bit of a giggle over that…But that was it. Last we ever saw of Jesus!"


Personnel

Paul McCartney – double-tracked lead vocals, bass
John Lennon – backing vocals
George Harrison – backing vocals, double-tracked lead guitar
Ringo Starr – drums, maracas
George Martin – harpsichord
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Moogmodule

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Re: Song Of The Week - Fixing A Hole
« Reply #1 on: August 13, 2014, 12:21:20 PM »

I'd never rate this one in my top flight Beatle tunes. It's an ok song. Goes past pretty breezily without rising to great heights. As with even lesser Beatle tunes, it's well put together with good guitar work and it's fine to listen to.
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tkitna

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Re: Song Of The Week - Fixing A Hole
« Reply #2 on: August 13, 2014, 01:47:17 PM »

Love this song. One of my favorites off of Peppers and it probably finds itself in my top 20 Beatle tunes somewhere. Great song.

Klang

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Re: Song Of The Week - Fixing A Hole
« Reply #3 on: August 13, 2014, 02:45:42 PM »


Another tasty ingredient in the whole 'Pepper' mix. Very different from anything they'd done before, or since, I think. Kind of a jazzy-bluesy feel to it, yes? And still, unique. Great guitar solo. One and a half thumbs up (I've got to look around and find that missing half-thumb).

 :P

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oldbrownshoe

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Re: Song Of The Week - Fixing A Hole
« Reply #4 on: August 13, 2014, 04:12:02 PM »

Works in the context of the LP but would miss out in my Top 50. That said, I think the whole of 'Sgt. Pepper's' would probably miss out as well, though 'Pepper' era songs like 'Penny Lane' and 'Baby, You're A Rich Man' would get in.

I love that explanation of the song by Paul, it's so much more interesting and rewarding than the oft-quoted (wrongly, it would seem) allusion to the use of heroin (yawn).

In the June 1983 poll in the 'Beatles Monthly' it got 73 votes and was tied in 120th place with 'Maxwell's Silver Hammer' and 'I'm Looking Through You'.
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Kangaroo Kev

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Re: Song Of The Week - Fixing A Hole
« Reply #5 on: August 13, 2014, 10:03:22 PM »

Wistful.......is how Id describe it

Ive always liked it but it was sequenced badly next to Getting Better Ive always felt

its one of those Paul songs that I probably wouldnt like if it was Wings with Linda singing backing but the Rest of The Beatles make it very enjoyable.

Very nice playing from George Martin on the harpsichord as well, gives the song that other worldly quality, the neo classical intro he plays is almost a prediction of the great years of progressive rock that followed from 69.
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Moogmodule

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Re: Song Of The Week - Fixing A Hole
« Reply #6 on: August 13, 2014, 10:30:59 PM »

Wistful.......is how Id describe it

Ive always liked it but it was sequenced badly next to Getting Better Ive always felt


That's a good point. Two mid paced Paul tunes with a somewhat similar feel to them in a row probably did neither song a service.
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Mr Mustard

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Re: Song Of The Week - Fixing A Hole
« Reply #7 on: August 14, 2014, 12:27:26 AM »

Paul's reverie...I like it, always have done. A brown study set to music, from the whimsical harpsichord prelude to that gloriously treble heavy guitar solo, with those pensive lyrics riding a switchback vocal all the way through. I always find it hard to separate from the previous track; sibling musings from McCartney, "Getting Better" with its cautious optimism, "Fixing A Hole" with its contemplative daydream quality - two sides of the same melodic coin for me, both very enjoyable to listen to, neither one a classic.
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Hello Goodbye

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Re: Song Of The Week - Fixing A Hole
« Reply #8 on: August 14, 2014, 05:10:02 AM »

This has always been my favorite song on the album.  I reckon it's the harpsichord and Paul's double-meaning lyrics:

And it really doesn't matter if
I'm wrong I'm right
Where I belong I'm right
Where I belong

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Moogmodule

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Re: Song Of The Week - Fixing A Hole
« Reply #9 on: August 14, 2014, 08:44:21 AM »

I had a listen to this again today. Two points I'd make:

1. It's a really good vocal performance from Paul. He carries off several different styles of singing in the one song and does them all very nicely.

2. The arrangement is gorgeous. The mix of the harpsichord and active guitar with subtle backing vocals hits the spot wonderfully.

This is why I love the Beatles. Even with a song I wouldn't consider in the first rank, they put so much into it that you can't help but like it.

 cheer1

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Dcazz

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Re: Song Of The Week - Fixing A Hole
« Reply #10 on: August 14, 2014, 11:03:57 AM »

This song is a favorite of mine. The energy is great the way it just moves along. Georges guitar work is up there with his best! Given that Sgt. Pepper isn't heavy with guitar like say Abbey Road it's a real treat to hear. The lyrics and somewhat mysterious but meaningful as we're still discussing what he had in mind.
As for sequencing I find that there seems to be something of an occasional formula to Paul dominated Beatles albums. They all start out with a big, powerhouse song from someone (eg.) AHDN, Help, Taxman, SPLHCB, etc... then you find a couple of competent Paul (usually) songs, The Night Before-Another Girl, Getting Better-Fixing a Hole, Maxwell-Oh Darling. Then it goes back and forth with in similar fashion with side 2 ending with a big one from someone for the finale. Ticket To Ride, Tomorrow never Knows, A Day In The Life, I Am The Walrus, The End.
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Kangaroo Kev

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Re: Song Of The Week - Fixing A Hole
« Reply #11 on: August 14, 2014, 11:28:52 AM »

This song is a favorite of mine. The energy is great the way it just moves along. Georges guitar work is up there with his best! Given that Sgt. Pepper isn't heavy with guitar like say Abbey Road it's a real treat to hear. The lyrics and somewhat mysterious but meaningful as we're still discussing what he had in mind.
As for sequencing I find that there seems to be something of an occasional formula to Paul dominated Beatles albums. They all start out with a big, powerhouse song from someone (eg.) AHDN, Help, Taxman, SPLHCB, etc... then you find a couple of competent Paul (usually) songs, The Night Before-Another Girl, Getting Better-Fixing a Hole, Maxwell-Oh Darling. Then it goes back and forth with in similar fashion with side 2 ending with a big one from someone for the finale. Ticket To Ride, Tomorrow never Knows, A Day In The Life, I Am The Walrus, The End.

yeah that does seem to happen, well spotted Dave  ;)
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blmeanie

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Re: Song Of The Week - Fixing A Hole
« Reply #12 on: August 14, 2014, 11:41:53 AM »

Love it , don't hear it enough sadly.

Two points - watched/listened to it just now on youtube, lyrics were posted, I always heard this as "wondering" not "wandering".  Kind of like "wondering" better.  Both have interesting meanings.

And when my mind is wandering
There I will go.

Love this :

I'm taking the time for a number of things
That weren't important yesterday
And I still go.

Great thought/expression.
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Normandie

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Re: Song Of The Week - Fixing A Hole
« Reply #13 on: August 14, 2014, 02:36:36 PM »

Love this :

I'm taking the time for a number of things
That weren't important yesterday
And I still go.

Great thought/expression.

That's one of my favorite lyrics. Love this song.
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Harpsichord

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Re: Song Of The Week - Fixing A Hole
« Reply #14 on: August 16, 2014, 02:33:13 AM »

I adore this song, in fact, it would come close to being my favourite on Pepper (A Day in the Life is so good though). Possibly their most underrated among Beatles fans.

Two points - watched/listened to it just now on youtube, lyrics were posted, I always heard this as "wondering" not "wandering".  Kind of like "wondering" better.  Both have interesting meanings.

^^
I thought that when I first heard the song too.

I read this as a depressed or worried fellow who seeks refuge in the distraction of simple household repairs - fixing a hole, painting a roof - that weren't important yesterday, when all his troubles seemed so far away.
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Dcazz

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Re: Song Of The Week - Fixing A Hole
« Reply #15 on: August 16, 2014, 11:16:16 AM »

I would stand corrected (if necessary) but I think Paul had just purchased his Scottish farm and used to go there for solitude and relaxation. As I remember the article it was definitely a fixer upper that he did a lot of work himself. Must have had a lot of holes!
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Mr Mustard

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Re: Song Of The Week - Fixing A Hole
« Reply #16 on: August 16, 2014, 02:19:49 PM »

I would stand corrected (if necessary) but I think Paul had just purchased his Scottish farm and used to go there for solitude and relaxation. As I remember the article it was definitely a fixer upper that he did a lot of work himself. Must have had a lot of holes!

Four thousand probably...

"Now they know how many holes it takes to fill the Farmyard wallllll....."

 ;)


I forgot to mention that it's part of that exclusive little sub-set of Beatles songs which gets a namecheck within the lyrics of another Beatles song... I like that!
« Last Edit: August 16, 2014, 02:22:00 PM by Mr Mustard »
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Klang

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Re: Song Of The Week - Fixing A Hole
« Reply #17 on: August 16, 2014, 08:20:27 PM »


Here's the song covered by Electric Würms from the upcoming 'Pepper' tribute album by Flaming Lips...



 8)

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Kevin

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Re: Song Of The Week - Fixing A Hole
« Reply #18 on: August 16, 2014, 09:29:26 PM »

I would stand corrected (if necessary) but I think Paul had just purchased his Scottish farm and used to go there for solitude and relaxation. As I remember the article it was definitely a fixer upper that he did a lot of work himself. Must have had a lot of holes!

Geoffrey maitland-smith, paul's accountant in the 60's died recently. According to his obituary in the new Scotsman he started acting for Paul after epsteins death. It said McCartney had been advised to invest in property as a tax shelter, and had advised mr maitland- smith to purchase the farm after he had seen it in a magazine (he also asked him to open an account with Roschilds). He had never visited it himself.
So it's too late for Pepper and also kills some of the hippy romance of it all.
« Last Edit: August 16, 2014, 09:32:03 PM by Kevin »
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Dcazz

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Re: Song Of The Week - Fixing A Hole
« Reply #19 on: August 16, 2014, 10:57:16 PM »

Four thousand probably...

"Now they know how many holes it takes to fill the Farmyard wallllll....."

 ;)


I forgot to mention that it's part of that exclusive little sub-set of Beatles songs which gets a namecheck within the lyrics of another Beatles song... I like that!
We also thought it might have been his elevator floor in the Glass Onion that was under construction at the time. Pictures are in another thread. Just guessing!
« Last Edit: August 16, 2014, 11:27:07 PM by Dcazz »
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