Tag Archives: the Beatles

Something familiar and Fab lurks with Blac Rabbit

Two gentlemen singing in harmony to create a fantastic melody in a song titled “Eight Days a Week”. That was John Lennon and Paul McCartney, and it happened on many songs for a decade. Yet I’m not talking about John and Paul in this case. I’m talking about a duo who can be seen in the act at subway stations in the New York area.

It was by chance I crossed a friend who posted a video of Blac Rabbit performing on Facebook. It’s pretty common to cross gentlemen from all over doing covers of Beatles work and sounding pretty good. This was different. This was John and Paul…at least in this writer’s opinion as well as others who cross them in the New York subway stations.

The Blac Rabbit website doesn’t seem to feature an “About” page to give up facts about these guys. Their Facebook page isn’t much more informative on the “about” section there, either. It was through a news article by a New York TV station that I found out that they are twin brothers, Amiri and Rahiem Taylor.

They began busking to make some pocket money, and found a receptive audience on the subway with their Beatles covers. The brothers say they’re continuing to perform on the subway while performing original music at venues across the city.

I also found out that they do have an about page on their website (yeah, slight me for that because I couldn’t find the damn thing myself):

Born and raised in Bed Stuy, Brooklyn, identical twin brothers Amiri and Rahiem Taylor do not make the type of music that their borough of origin is usually associated with.  Growing up surrounded by hip hop culture and all it’s glory, the Taylor brothers had more exposure in their house to pop, funk and soul music from the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s.  So naturally when they began writing songs in high school, they decided “why not learn from arguably the greatest song writing duo of all time?” and proceeded to teach themselves how to play guitar and write songs based off of the Beatles.  After high school they formed Blac Rabbit, bringing in former metal and church drummer Patrick Jones, followed by resident shredder Josh Lugo on bass (and sometimes guitar) to play their original psychedelic rock tunes.

They do their own music? Oh, yeah… Their own stuff can be found on SoundCloud while YouTube can show you more o their performances as well as their original stuff. Here’s one of their songs, just to whet your appetite:

With their harmony and abilities, it piques my curiosity where the group can go with their stuff. As someone who was drenched in the music of the same era as the Taylor duo, I know that can inspire rather grandly. It’s what their creativity brings that remains to be seen.

I also hope they go beyond New York. Let that be a memo to the Tampa Bay club scene in St. Pete, Ybor City and beyond in the Tampa Bay area: Lure these guys here.  Could you imagine what that’d lure to your establishments? Just where in the area they’d end up performing in a busker spot remains to be seen but it’s not like we’re totally lacking on such locations. Ybor City, Pier 60, the West Plaza before a Lightning game. That’s just a shred of potential spots.

There is a question that remains though: Hass Sir Paul McCartney had someone tell him about this pair yet? Cover acts are not uncommon, but this is different. The Taylor duo and Blac Rabbit seem to have something “Fab” going on.

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“Summer Dreams” to “Sgt. Pepper” and Brian Wilson’s Ask Me Anything on Reddit

AS a fan of the Beatles, I’ve read many different pieces of writing about those four Liverpudians, be that magazine or news articles in print and online or books… Many things that almost always touched on an album by another group and one specific musical composer from that group: The Beach Boys, Pet Sounds and Brian Wilson.

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I never heard it but I knew the unknown

You ever come across something totally foreign to you and yet you distinguish it? You know of things even if you have never physically interacted with them? I’m not talking about watching commercials for amusement parks or other famous locales and then going to them.  I mean something more personal and yet something more physically removed than having seen or heard whispers about an item and then having it thrust on you by chance. Continue reading

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The Beatles video, “You’re Going to Lose That Girl”, missing in action no more

It’s arguable to write that the greatest song the Beatles ever recorded and didn’t release as a single was “You’re Going to Lose That Girl”, which was released in 1965 on the album “Help!”. It’s a standard Lennon/McCartney scribed ode that has ties to “She Loves You” as if it were a sequel. I write that point here but I don’t link because trying to find the source I read has been fruitless (this line will be deleted if I do find the link). There are only two words on record for any member of the Fab Four speaking about the song: John Lennon told Playboy in 1980, “That’s me.” You can find more in-depth coverage of the song here. There are touches on other facts about Lennon / McCartney and history that may pique your interest.

I was introduced to the Fab Four in 1985 when my father won a VHS tape of “Help!” from 101 WCBS FM in New York. I was skittish and disinterested at first in watching as the tape opened up with the black-and-white trailer to “A Hard Day’s Night”, the film the Beatles made in 1964. Black-and-white film and disjointed snippets of Beatle songs from the movie just didn’t win me over (and what would you expect? I was 5 or 6 years old at the time). I fidgeted, I tried getting up, but my father put his hands on my shoulders and sat me down.

Then “Help!” started, with actor Leo McKern reciting cult tidings in what amounted to an execution ceremony. Though it was a dark setting, the color blazed (in comparison to that “A Hard Day’s Night” trailer and my interest ticked up. One thing led to another in the film and McKern’s character of Clang bellowed to his cult sect that surrounded him, “Where is the ring?! Search her! What has she done with the ring?!” The cult cried repeatedly “The ring?!” in response and then… then…

Then you see the fabled ring, a large red gemstone on a standard gold band. It just so happens to be on the hand of drummer Ringo Starr as a performance of the song “Help!” gets underway (in black-and-white… which meant nothing to me at this point) and truly the movie began as the Beatles performed “Help!”.

There were seven songs performed in the movie, with “You’re Going to Lose That Girl” being my favorite. Heck, viewing the film a second time, I remember my brothers and I rewinding the video to replay the song and sing along with it. We were won over. That’s not to say “Help!” didn’t win us over, or “Ticket to Ride”, “You’ve Got To Hide Your Love Away”, “I Need You” (George Harrison’s first composed song), “The Night Before, or “Another Girl”. It’s just the memory of this song in particular.

Director Richard Lester played with lighting but did a simple in-studio scene with John, Paul, George and Ringo. The hues and colors vary and smoke plays into scenes (hey, smoking was hip back then Ringo is doing it in some scenes of the song). I’d put this song, as a video; well ahead of the majority of music videos that also play the studio scene. And seeing it’s been 52 years since the damn thing was recorded, that should tell the music video director sect out there to raise their game.

You can’t find the song on YouTube though, and the simple Google search (which now produces extensive info results for most songs) only shows you amateurs playing.

Is there a business contrast playing out between Apple Corps LTD (the Beatles company) and Google? I don’t know. What I do know is that I started this write up fixated on not being able to find the videos from “Help!” on YouTube. Only a fraction of the movie performance of “You’re going to Lose That Girl” can be found.

A re-worded my web search just a tad (with quotation marks: “You’re Going to Lose That Girl” video, Help!) and lo and behold I found what has been missing via Vimeo.

“You’re Going To Lose That Girl” from Merritt Mullen on Vimeo.

Will it remain on the site? Dunno, though it’s 4 year lifespan tells me that it’s going to stay. You can find a low quality version of “Ticket to Ride” on there, as well as “You’ve Got to Hide Your Love Away” (standard quality). The other songs are missing / have mixed in content.

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by | March 8, 2017 · 12:33 PM

The missing hit: “You’re Going to Lose That Girl”

My first exposure to the Beatles, the most influential pop/rock group of the 20th century, came by way of a VHS tape. As a younger child before that, I’d probably already heard the group countless times on the radio; my father listened to oldies all the time on 101 WCBS FM in New York and I was exposed to a plethora of oldies through the first 6 years of my life while being driven around in the car. Dad also had a knack participating in call-in contests on WCBS and winning himself DJ autographs and other things from the station.

I don’t remember details of when and how, but I do recall my father sitting me and my brothers down to watch a VHS tape that he won from the radio. I also remember the fact it started with a black-and-white trailer for another movie and how it turned me off at the time… I mean, I was a kid! We had cable TV! I don’t remember what I wanted instead but I do think it was just expectations and that trailer didn’t catch my interest. That music-driven, black-and-white trailer was “A Hard Day’s Night”, the Beatles previous film.

Then the main picture started and my attention and interest was drawn in. I won’t go through the lead-in scene to Help! But between me and my two brothers who were watching, we got locked in with curiosity….and became enthused with the musical performances within the movie.

I could talk about Help! in-depth here as a film, but my focus isn’t on the entirety of the flick but a 2:23 performance that is, in my humble opinion, the greatest song not released as a single by the Fab Four in the group’s history (as an active band and after the breakup): “You’re Going to Lose That Girl.”

My brothers and I would rewind the movie and watch the performance of the band over and over again. John Lennon was on lead vocals, Paul McCartney and George Harrison backed him vocally in a harmonious fashion, repeating him and singing with him. Heck, the performance in the film itself was the band recording the song with the scene framing in-studio mystique (and before you ask: No, this was not filmed at Abbey Road).

I’d simply post the movie clip here but the powers-that-be (be it film industry or Apple Corps LTD) has removed the video from YouTube. In protecting copyrights and ownership, irrelevance is hoisted. It’s an ironic truth. Of course, if you know of the song and like the song, then that statement is not an attempted dressing-down of its value as-so-much an admission of where it has gone by being profit driven and thus hidden from the masses.

I don’t know how long covers of the song are going to be allowed to exist on YouTube (blame that on the powers-that-be if it isn’t long) but I post one of the covers of the song below. The biggest audio-difference between this and the original version is the depth of the sound and its richness.

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http://www.rawcharge.com/2014/2/16/5417026/2014-sochi-winter-olumpics-1980-lake-placid-miracle-the-beatles-1964

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by | February 16, 2014 · 3:08 PM

Brother, can you spare a Loafie?

Dear Creative Loafing,

Look, I’m not the most interesting guy out there. Just go through the archives here on The Stonegauge (which stretch back to 2002) and you can find plenty of boring, personal, and petty drivel. I’m not flashy, but I have been involved with the sites and people that your independent newspaper has honored again and again — such as helping Tommy Duncan run Sticks of Fire from 2005-2007, or aiding CL columnist Catherine Durkin Robinson with her blog as well as editing one of her books. I’m online buddies with one of Tampa Bay’s most popular Twitter personalities in Clark Brooks (oh, yeah, he also writes for me on Raw Charge).

I’ve been blogging for nearly a decade, I am one of the longest tenured hockey bloggers in the sport (having started on Boltsmag.com in 2004). And I’m the only local net personality who has not only been threatened with litigation from the most popular pop group of the 20th century, but I’ve been in USA Today and quoted between the likes of Tony LaRussa and “Crash” Davis.

My point is, how about throwing a little recognition my way in your upcoming 2011 Best Of The Bay awards? I’m not as trendy and attractive as former Interbay Superstar Rachel Moran, nor am I as social as other personalities who’ve won accolades through their net presence…

But I have been around a while, and I’ve been the guy keeping things running for some of your favorites in the past. A hat tip to the mysterious online producer isn’t much to ask, is it?

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Speculation on something unimportant

Has this:
Apple event for Tuesday, September 9th, 2008

Been inspired by this:
leaping Beatles

Gotta wonder but I have my doubts… Just cuz it’s The Beatles we’re talking about. And even IF they did announce at tomorrow’s event, it’s not like fans haven’t bought the CD’s or ripped MP3’s of songs from the Fab 4 they really want… Meaning unless there is something new from #3 Abbey Road on top of the iPod event, it’s just inevitability coming to realization if they are part of the announcements tomorrow.

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Six years ago today…

The St. Petersburg Times gave me my closeup (as Cecil B. DeMille was not available)

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I'm doing something wrong, aren't I?

So I’m on Pandora — I have been here a few times in the past trying to find similar music to what I love as a way to introduce myself to new music.

The problem is more times than not I get introduced to stuff that doesn’t sound at all similar to what qualities I like in a song.

For instance, tonight I started with the Doors and Moonlight Drive — The deep baritone vocal from Morrison, coupled with the trance like bridge section from Manzarek and the jazz style drumming from Densmore make this song a classic to me. Those are the qualities I am endeared to in the music.

What I get are songs that are probably comparable in structure but not too comparable – to me – to what the song invokes with the mood. A song that invokes the pace. A song that simply makes me do a double take that I want to hear again.

I tried You’re Going to Lose That Girl by the Beatles next. Again, the genome project picked up on the structure of the music and not so much the mood that’s set. The pace of the song doesn’tseem to carry over in the suggestions, nor does the vocal harmonies, nor the rhythem bae of the song that doesn’t overstep it’s bounds… But mostly it’s the vocals that are most catchy with the song.

And wasn’t catchy at all with the suggested songs that followed. I know, I am asking for a tough act to follow with bands that can compare to the Beatles or songs that can compare to the Beatles but there has to be something out there. This is a 43 year old song for god sake…

I did have a better time when I tried surfer instrumental rock (Walk, Don’t run gave way to soem great music) but that’s instrumental all the way. That’s how Pandora is supposed to work.

Maybe I’m just too picky with music…? Or maybe I am just doing this wrong.

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