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The Beatles Albums- Nowhere Man

The Beatles – Nowhere Man (live!)

 

The Beatles Nowhere Man (Live In Japan)

 

 

Written by: John Lennon (100%) (credited as Lennon-McCartney)
Recorded: October 21, 1965; October 22, 1965 (Studio 2, Abbey Road Studios, London, England)
Mixed: October 25, 1965; October 26, 1965
Length: 2:30
Takes: 4
Musicians: John Lennon: lead vocals, lead guitar (1961 Sonic Blue Fender Stratocaster), rhythm guitar (1964 Gibson J160E)
Paul McCartney: harmony vocals, bass guitar (1961 Hofner 500/1)
George Harrison: harmony vocals, lead guitar (1961 Sonic Blue Fender Stratocaster)
Ringo Starr: drums (Ludwig)
First released: February 15, 1966 (US: Capitol 5587)
Available on: (CDs in bold)

Nowhere Man Lyrics

 

He’s a real nowhere man
Sitting in his nowhere land
Making all his nowhere plans for nobodyDoesn’t have a point of view
Knows not where he’s going to
Isn’t he a bit like you and me?
Nowhere man please listen
You don’t know what you’re missing
Nowhere man, The world is at your commandHe’s as blind as he can be
Just sees what he wants to see
Nowhere man, can you see me at all
Nowhere man don’t worry
Take your time, don’t hurry
Leave it all till somebody else
Lends you a hand
Ah, la, la, la, laDoesn’t have a point of view
Knows not where he’s going to
Isn’t he a bit like you and me?
Nowhere man please listen
You don’t know what you’re missing
Nowhere man, The world is at your command
Ah, la, la, la, laHe’s a real nowhere man
Sitting in his nowhere land
Making all his nowhere plans for nobody
Making all his nowhere plans for nobody
Making all his nowhere plans for nobody

Nowhere Man:

History and Facts

ohn Lennon wrote this gentle folk-rock ballad in the autumn of 1965 at his home in Kenwood, St. George’s Hill Estate, Weybridge, Surrey.

Just as “Yesterday” mysteriously came to Paul McCartney, “Nowhere Man” simply came to Lennon at dawn after he’d stayed up all night, struggling to come up with a new song for Rubber Soul. He happened upon a phrase, “nowhere man,” which, he felt, described his own fears about himself. “I thought of myself sitting there, doing nothing and getting nowhere,” he later said.

The song, a quasi-biographical composition in the vein of “I’m A Loser” and “Help!,” was recorded on October 22, 1965, after several failed attempts the day before. Apart from its beautiful, ethereal vocal harmonies, the song is also striking for the parts played by McCartney and George Harrison.

Besides gracing the track with his most melodic bass part to date, McCartney was instrumental in wringing an ultra-trebly sound out of Harrison’s and Lennon’s newly acquired Sonic Blue Fender Stratocasters, especially for Harrison’s joyous, verse-based guitar solo.

“We wanted very trebly guitars, which [Stratocasters] are. They’re among the most trebly guitars I’ve ever heard on record,” McCartney said. “The engineer said, ‘All right’ … and we said ‘That’s not enough,’ and he said … ‘I’ve only got one pot and that’s it!’ We replied, ‘Well, put that through another lot of faders and put the treble up on that.”

It can be argued that the high-E harmonic note that ends Harrison’s guitar solo also sounds the death knell for The Beatles’ reliance on their once-ubiquitous Beatlemania-era instruments, namely their Gretsches and Rickenbackers (excluding McCartney’s 4001S, which he’d use well into the late Wings era).

Other Infromation

 

  • A gentle folk-rock ballad crafted entirely by John sometime in the fall of 1965 at his home in Kenwood, St. George’s Hill Estate, Weybridge, Surrey. In his recollection, he’d stayed up all night trying desperately to come up with another song for the band’s new album. Then, around dawn, after giving up and laying down to sleep, he chanced upon a phrase, “nowhere man,” which described how he felt about himself at that moment (“I thought of myself sitting there, doing nothing and getting nowhere”). He immediately came up with the first verse and bridge, which he finished later. Paul’s contribution was, by most accounts, negligible.
  • Lennon was never particularly fond of this song, as with all his “works for hire” — he preferred to wait for inspiration to strike rather than have it occur from a deadline. However, most fans and critics agree it’s one of the best songs to emanate from the group’s “middle period.”
  • “Nowhere Man” was certainly recorded like an afterthought, coming at the end of two sessions for self-penned songs John liked much better: “Norwegian Wood” and “In My Life.”
  • The twin chiming guitars on this song are identical “sonic blue” Fender Strats — one played by John in the verses and one used by George for the solo. These were both sent to the band during the recording of Help! The solo here is considered one of George’s best.
  • Although other songs from Rubber Soul dealt with social issues rather than romantic love (“Think For Yourself,” “The Word”), this is notable as being the first Beatles single to make such a break from convention.
  • Although Paul has suggested in interviews that the guitars for this track were put through more than one set of faders, to give them an ultra-trebly sound, the finished recording shows no evidence it worked. (The Mobile Fidelity Sound Labs release of Rubber Soul 1984, however, does, having been mastered at a slower speed than usual.)
  • The 1968 animated film Yellow Submarine — a project backed by the Beatles but not featuring them personally — contains a strange little character named Jeremy Hilary Boob, who leads the four “Beatles” around a place called “Pepperland.” In the film, this song is used to define Jeremy as a lonely character.
  • This is rumored to be Bob Dylan’s favorite Beatles song.
  • Although Paul has suggested in interviews that the guitars for this track were put through more than one set of faders, to give them an ultra-trebly sound, the finished recording shows no evidence it worked. (The Mobile Fidelity Sound Labs release of Rubber Soul 1984, however, does, having been mastered at a slower speed than usual.)
  • The 1968 animated film Yellow Submarine — a project backed by the Beatles but not featuring them personally — contains a strange little character named Jeremy Hilary Boob, who leads the four “Beatles” around a place called “Pepperland.” In the film, this song is used to define Jeremy as a lonely character.
  • This is rumored to be Bob Dylan’s favorite Beatles song.
  • Although Paul has suggested in interviews that the guitars for this track were put through more than one set of faders, to give them an ultra-trebly sound, the finished recording shows no evidence it worked. (The Mobile Fidelity Sound Labs release of Rubber Soul 1984, however, does, having been mastered at a slower speed than usual.)
  • The 1968 animated film Yellow Submarine — a project backed by the Beatles but not featuring them personally — contains a strange little character named Jeremy Hilary Boob, who leads the four “Beatles” around a place called “Pepperland.” In the film, this song is used to define Jeremy as a lonely character.
  • This is rumored to be Bob Dylan’s favorite Beatles song.  about.com

 

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