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Yesterday - a rip off?

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The End:
Paul McCartney has always stated that he awoke one morning with the melody to Yesterday in his head. He has also stated that he is a great admirer of Nat King Cole. These two statements may come back to haunt him.

Similarities between Yesterday and Nat King Cole's Answer Me have been raised in a new book called "101 Beatles Myths Debunked" by Spencer Leigh and Alan Clayson.

Apart from both songs containing the title of the song in the opening line and having the same number of syllables, there are other similarites too.

The following lines are from Answer Me:

You were mine yesterday
I believed that love was here to stay.

Sound familiar?

Music historian, Dominic Pedler, has this to say:

"The rhythmic phrasing makes for a great comparison. The opening three syllables and the scanning of all the verses is virtually identical.

"While the pitch of the melody notes are mostly very different, the closing verse line 'sweetheart' rises rather than falls from 5th to 3rd, an unusual stylistic touch which also appears in Yesterday."

Paul believed he'd subconsciously copied someone elses song, and consequently hawked his "Scambled Eggs" around for months, asking anyone who'd listen whether they recognised the tune. What would have happened if George Martin, or anyone else, had pointed out the similarities to Answer Me? Maybe Paul's troubles would have remained so far away!

Anyway, you can judge for yourselves because I've uploaded the track for you!

Let me know what you think - personally, apart from those lyrics I would never have drawn the comparison!

Yeah, this is an old one.

Nothing alike.  Certainly not enough to mean anything.  In a scale of 12 notes there will always be small similarities here and there.

I really don't hear many similarities - alright, so they both go up on a note where you halfway expect them to go down, but otherwise I can't really pinpoint anything else but the violins. So no, I don't think Yesterday is plagiarizing.

It's just like George's My sweet Lord and that... other song. Can't remember, but I never heard any similarities there either. Maybe I just have the musical memory of a goldfish or something ;)

The End:
[quote by=Stratford,m=1089998009,s=2 date=1090057264]I really don't hear many similarities

No, me neither! I just read that in a book and had to check it out myself. I'd never heard that rumour before, in fact the book claims that it's never even been mentioned before - you should write in and complain to them Mr C! ;D

The only REAL similarites, as far as I can see, are those few lines of lyrics - musically they sound nothing alike.

[quote by=Stratford,m=1089998009,s=2 date=1090057264]It's just like George's My sweet Lord and that... other song. Can't remember, but I never heard any similarities there either.[/quote]

Now THAT is another thing altogether! To my ears,  there are striking similarities between My Sweet Lord and He's So Fine by the Chiffons - the only real differences are Lord is slower and Fine has a middle 8 which is not evident on George's song (He's so fine - oh yeah - gonna make him mine - oh yeah - sooner or later - hope it's not later etc etc) - apart from that the songs sound the same to me.

Yeah, George's was a more obvious possible cop.

The connection for Nat and Paul has been kicked around for about a year that I know of, so if the book is only a year old then maybe that is where it comes from.

But it still doesn't hold water.  :)


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