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Author Topic: Looking Through You: Paul solo?  (Read 5730 times)

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Bobber

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Looking Through You: Paul solo?
« on: September 27, 2005, 09:18:06 AM »

I read this one the Beatles Anomalies list and thought it's interesting. A poster suggests that I'm Looking Through You might have been a solo recording by Paul.

David L Fairey has a wild theory on why this track is like this. See if you agree ...

My main argument surrounds the recording of the Rubber Soul track I'm Looking Through You, possibly one of the messiest recordings the Beatles made. It is rushed, terribly recorded and not particularly played well. Thus, I have a theory...

I believe, contrary to all other reports (including Lewisohn and Macdonald) that this could be a solo Paul recording. After all it was his song and quite a personal subject for him. The drumming is awful, with a noticeable rimshot being missed, no bass drum [MB: untrue, it's there, flumping away!] or hats and cymbals. Sounds like the old patting-the-knees percussion to me, recorded on top of a snare to keep time.

The guitars sound out of tune and sound like Paul's style of play, especially at the end. George was always a more organised guitarist and I can't see him committing this to tape when the Beatles where at their height! The guitar sound is also Paul, maybe his Epiphone Casino? The tambourine work is poor also and the organ stabs should have been heavily compressed.

In fact, the best input is the acoustic - capo'd? - guitar most audible at the start of the song.

Whatever, it's a messy recording, especially when compared to other Rubber Soul tracks which are well played and nicely produced. I don't have the date at hand when it was recorded but I'd guess it was one of the last songs recorded for the album. I do know however that Paul had had the main part of the song for some time. Was it dusted down, quickly recorded to complete the album?

Anyway, my main point is that it sounds like a song in which neither Ringo or George (and probably John) contributed.

Well, according to Lewisohn's Recording Sessions, "I'm Looking Through You" was almost the last track recorded. This version was recorded on the 10th and 11th November, 1965. 11th November is described as a marathon recording session. Final remixing was done on the 15th November. So yes, there was a deadline looming very hard.

Also, Lewisohn's Recording Sessions states that there was an initial attempt to record a backing for this song on 24th October. No list of who was present, or who-played-what is given. Interesting.

On the 6th November, a re-make was performed of this track, described as "too fast and frenetic". Again, no details of performance credits. "Verrrry interesting" as they say.

10th November, it was "finally made in a way that pleased everyone". Were the others even present? Could it be that this recording pleased Paul as it was completed to his satisfaction, and the others were pleased, because the thing was finished without them having to do it again with deadlines looming!

The album sleeve credits Ringo as playing a Hammond organ on the song, "but it cannot be heard on the recording, nor is the instrument detailed on the tape box" (Lewisohn again). In which case, what are those loud stabs on the organ? Evidently the tape box is not accurate either, as there is an organ there.

As a "conspiracy theory" it's an interesting idea, and I wonder how many other tracks might fall into this category.
« Last Edit: March 30, 2010, 02:25:53 PM by Bobber »
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An Apple Beatle

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Re: Looking Through You: Paul solo?
« Reply #1 on: September 27, 2005, 10:33:35 AM »

Hmmmmm.
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The End

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Re: Looking Through You: Paul solo?
« Reply #2 on: September 27, 2005, 12:44:33 PM »

Nah, the WHOLE of Rubber Soul was actually a rush job to get it out in time for Christmas. If you check the dates of the last recordings, mixing and releasing of the LP I think you'll find it's all within the space of 6 weeks!

(By the way, I'll have to check that fact when I get home!!!)

Bobber

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Re: Looking Through You: Paul solo?
« Reply #3 on: September 27, 2005, 12:47:16 PM »

The site is found here. Great read by the way!

http://www.pootle.demon.co.uk/wgo.htm
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The End

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Re: Looking Through You: Paul solo?
« Reply #4 on: September 28, 2005, 11:57:05 AM »

Oh yeah, I love that site! Have you read the whole "who sang yeah yeah yeah at the end of All You Need Is Love" saga?!! Similar to our who sang the aaaaahs in A Day In The Life (Paul obviously!) thread!

Bobber

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Re: Looking Through You: Paul solo?
« Reply #5 on: September 28, 2005, 12:42:19 PM »

Quote from: The_End
Oh yeah, I love that site! Have you read the whole "who sang yeah yeah yeah at the end of All You Need Is Love" saga?!! Similar to our who sang the aaaaahs in A Day In The Life (Paul obviously!) thread!

Indeed, great site. By the way, it IS obvious that the first part of the aaah's is sung by John, the second part by Paul. Just listen to the seperated channels on your own website.

About I'm Looking Through You: I think it's an interesting theory. The guitar sounds a bit like Paul's thing on Another Girl.
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In Blue Hawaii

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Re: Looking Through You: Paul solo?
« Reply #6 on: September 28, 2005, 09:07:51 PM »

No. I don't believe it. They sound very tight on Anthology 2 (disc 1, track 15). Maybe they were just tired.
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In Blue Hawaii

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Re: Looking Through You: Paul solo?
« Reply #7 on: September 28, 2005, 09:16:53 PM »

Found this:

Lead Singer: Paul

Recording: 10/24/65, 11/6/65, 11/10/65, 11/11/65
Mixing: 11/15/65
Length: 2:24
Take: 4

Anomalies
O:04
Paul tries out the song "Where did you go, Where did you go" (Not on CD)
0:15
Feedback
1:01, 1:04
Handclaps go all out of time and stop
1:05,1:43
Edit in the phrase "Love ha/as a nasty habit" Second time is much more subtle
1:18
On the down beat of "were above me But not today" there is a loud guitar feedback/harmonic (Left of centre)
1:20
Sounds like dropping of a tambourine
1:34, 2:16-2:19
One of the organ stabs moves to the centre of stereo (from the right) for no real reason.
1:35
Talking
1:41-1:42
Two clicks (centre)
1:52-1:54 * NEW *
George plays various out of tune notes, right channel. This happens in a few places (not the cleanest of guitar tracks!) but here is worst.
1:58
Ringo misses the snare! Actually, from 1:50 to 1:58 Ringo seems to be moving his position, as the snares change sound each time, one time he hits the rim only, before missing this beat.
2:19-end * NEW *
George either gets bored with the riff, or becomes distracted, as he plays random notes into the fadeout (right).

Also note that on American Stereo LPs there are two false starts not counted above. The first is about 1 beat, and the second three or four beats.
Paul McCartney wrote this when his girlfriend, an actress named Jane Asher, left on a theater tour.
On the US stereo version, there are 2 false guitar intros. This version was released on Capitol Records.
Ringo played the Hammond organ.
The version on the album is a second version the Beatles recorded. The one that appears on Anthology 2 was originally going to be the one put on Rubber Soul until a decision was made to do a remake. (thanks, Adrian - Wilmington, DE)
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somedude210

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Re: Looking Through You: Paul solo?
« Reply #8 on: September 28, 2005, 10:00:38 PM »

MY GOD! it makes perfect sense, there really werent 4 beatles, it was one guy named Jongoulrge McHarronarr. It was only maaaaade to look like there were four. it must be a weird british government conspiricy to put the country on the map again.

 ;Dconspiricy theories are fun ;D
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somedude210

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Re: Looking Through You: Paul solo?
« Reply #9 on: September 28, 2005, 10:04:39 PM »

but no seriously, the original theory that paul put the song together himself actually sounds like he did do it
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Re: Looking Through You: Paul solo?
« Reply #10 on: September 28, 2005, 11:32:20 PM »

Don't forget they only had 4 track in those days - and dubbing was only used when all the tracks were full. So for Paul to play all instruments and double track his vocal would have been impractical across just 4 tracks.

tkitna

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Re: Looking Through You: Paul solo?
« Reply #11 on: September 28, 2005, 11:58:46 PM »

Old David L Fairey doesnt have much good to say about the track, but yet its one of my favorites on the album. Maybe Paul did do it all, but I doubt it.

somedude210

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Re: Looking Through You: Paul solo?
« Reply #12 on: September 29, 2005, 02:11:39 AM »

I'm still going with the one singer called Jongoulrge McHarronarr theory. ;D
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Re: Looking Through You: Paul solo?
« Reply #13 on: September 29, 2005, 11:49:31 AM »

The demo version is much different than the released. As Al said, 'Rubber Soul' was hastily written and recorded, mixed, mastered, and pressed just in time for the holidays. The majority of the album was done in just a few weeks. I am certain it is was a Beatles song, not just Paul.
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Bobber

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Re: Looking Through You: Paul solo?
« Reply #14 on: September 29, 2005, 01:18:04 PM »

I'm not saying it is a soloproject from Paul, but the rest of the album seems rather clean and well-recorded compared to this specific track. It almost looks like this was the best they could do and that's not really the truth. Ringo (or whoever's drumming) misses a complete beat on the snare! And there's a lot of anomalies on the track as well. Little guitar notes here and there, all unintended. Handclaps going out of rhythm... They were really and a great rush and it seems as if they had absolutely no time left.
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Re: Looking Through You: Paul solo?
« Reply #15 on: September 29, 2005, 11:34:38 PM »

That's one of the greatest things about Beatle's music--they didn't strive for absolute perfection, and made the most incredible music in spite of the mistakes. There are anomolies and mistakes galore on their songs, and that's pretty cool. 'In My Life', a beautiful song in my opinion, at the very end, a finger hits the guitar string and the ring of it is 'muffled' for lack of better word. It would have been very simple to re-record the last chord, but they didn't. They left it as is. Who cares if a snare is mis-hit? That's the beautiful thing about their music and its fun to listen for the little nuances or whatever. Bottom line, who gives a sh*t?
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An Apple Beatle

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Re: Looking Through You: Paul solo?
« Reply #16 on: September 30, 2005, 12:28:59 AM »

Well said JF....Vibe and feel on the soul and ears, rather than perfectly executed, souless music.
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somedude210

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Re: Looking Through You: Paul solo?
« Reply #17 on: September 30, 2005, 12:44:58 AM »

some of the best things in life are mistakes, just look at the 2000 and 2004 election  ::)
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An Apple Beatle

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Re: Looking Through You: Paul solo?
« Reply #18 on: September 30, 2005, 12:49:25 AM »

That was planned!!! lol
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In Blue Hawaii

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Re: Looking Through You: Paul solo?
« Reply #19 on: September 30, 2005, 06:48:12 PM »

Life isn't perfect, but you CAN make perfect music. Isn't that beautiful?
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