Saturday, July 12, 2008

martha, my dear

This week I decided that I don't listen to the Beatles enough anymore. Once upon a time, I was obsessed (I guess you could say that, in a way, I still am) with all things Beatles. And if you don't know about my love and admiration for Paul McCartney, then, well, you just don't know me very well, do you? I'm still convinced that I have been cheated by the heavens for not being alive during the 60s (specifically, in swinging London). So while I've read all the great books, seen all the great films, listened to all of the incredible music, nothing seems to transport me there as much as my heart longs for it. (For those of you in the market for a great book about those times, read Many Years From Now, Paul's authorized biography.)

I am tirelessly digressing here, I know... To get to the point, this week I pulled out the White Album. It had been a seriously long time since I'd listened to a Beatles record in full (lately I've been more into McCartney, Paul's first solo record on which he played all the instruments). And I was relieved to be listening again. The songs sound just as sweet as they did when I was a child. My Mom used to put on Beatles records and dance around the house while dusting, vacuuming, or cooking, which bloomed into my own obsession with the band, so thanks, Mom!

My favorite song on the record, which, strangely, has never appealed to me much before, is "Martha, My Dear." I love how it's about Paul's English sheepdog, Martha, who lived with him on Cavendish Avenue in London when the song was recorded. When I was living in London in 1999/2000, I walked to St. John's Wood to Cavendish Avenue and stood outside the gates of Paul's former home. I stared at the lawn and windows and realized that, more than 30 years earlier, girls would stand outside and wait for Paul to emerge. It was a surreal experience.

Beatles stories? Anyone?

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