Saturday, November 28, 2009

PMCPP Presents: You Won't See Me

PMCPP Analysis #17

Key: A Major
Rhythm: Chunkity Chunk chunk chunk


Oh. Hi.

Hey, uh... apparently some people still read this.

I'm as surprised as you, trust me.

So, uh... I guess I should start doing this again! Let's get it going with one of my favorite songs from Rubber Soul, You Won't See Me.

THE PIANO: Memorize the following pattern; --2-3and-and.

Congratulations! You can now play You Won't See me! The entire verse consists of nothing but that one pattern over. And over. And over again! The chords on piano rarely in the song contain more than 2 notes in the right hand, and in fact sometimes there's only 1 note in the "chord" at any time. It's not a piano run I'm talking about either, it's just usually him making a leap between chords which he needs a bridge to so he doesn't miss the note (that's my story, I'm sticking to it!)

In the bass, we have the usual fare of Macca hitting the root notes with every single chord he plays. The only actual piano run you'll find in the song is in the bass, at the very start of the carnage. And by run I mean "play a D chord in the first inversion note by note". Naturally there is nothing going on in the right hand at that point to screw him up.

For the Bridge we go from simple to mecha-simple by changing the pattern to a simple "four on the floor" style smashing of the same 2 note chords as before, with the same 1 note repeating bass notes. The entire part for the piano is naturally peppered with naturals to keep it on what equates to a musical 4th grade reading level.

If that even made sense.

LAZINESS IN SONGWRITING: In Macca's old standard key of A Major filled with random bluesy influences (making the sharp notes not sharp notes no more) and as I pointed up there, a really damn easy piano part. But what of the rest of the song?

Macca wrote this song with the wonderful addition of there being a hidden sort of pedal point (albeit in the Treble instead of the bass) throughout the whole song. Seriously, just about every single chord that exists that contains an A is used in this song. I guess since he couldn't find a way to shift the song into the key of C he needed SOMETHING to keep himself amused. To be fair I would be surprised if he didn't look at that juicy D-minor chord he kept sticking into the song (another clever way to remove those unsightly F#'s from the score!) and consider using a Dm-G7-C progression just for shits and giggles.

But that's just me.

By the way, our friend Macca also hired a guy to hit a mid-range A on an organ for the last verse. No other notes, just an A. The whole verse. I'll just let you make your own joke here because if I listed every possible guffaw that could be had out of Paul having to HIRE a guy to hold one note down for 20 seconds I would run out of room on the internet.

WHY PAUL GOT AWAY WITH IT: The piano part is thankfully hidden fairly well away in this song, being covered by a fuckawesome drum part made by Ringo, (actually one of my favorite drum parts of all time!) a really loud bunch of sliced chords on guitar every 2nd and 4th beat, and a pretty nice sounding hilltop style bass part put in by Paul.

So basically if Paul had tried one of HIS drum parts (See: Back in the USSR) and put the piano too much higher in the mix, the song would just suck outright. But chalk at least one smart move up to Paul with this one, maybe he realized how bad he was just for once??!

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This series and blog is totally tongue in cheek. I really do love Paul McCartney.