Day 11: “And Your Bird Can Sing”

When was it recorded?  Apr. 26, 1966

When was it first released, and on which album?  Aug. 5, 1966 on “Revolver”

Who wrote it?  Lennon (with noteworthy contribution from McCartney)

Have I heard this song before?  Yes

What my research dug up:

If you look up the definition of “agony” in your nearest dictionary, you will find a word-for-word transcript of my inner monologue while I was at Wal-Mart today.  They had one single CD copy of every Beatles album including “Live at the BBC” and “Past Masters.”  I didn’t even have enough money to buy one (the reason my entire inner monologue is found under “agony” is because I had to comb the depths of my purse for loose change when I was checking out, which was even more embarrassing).  After chewing myself out for being broke as fuck I somehow convinced myself that never would any physical copies of those albums ever reenter my life – like, if I didn’t buy those Beatles albums at this very moment I would never get another opportunity to do so again.  At least the thought of shoplifting them didn’t strike me until three hours after I left Wal-Mart.

Anyway, I noted that “And Your Bird Can Sing” appears on “Revolver” because it’s my favorite Beatles album and I’m kind of ignoring the American albums.  They needlessly chop up original releases and complicate my organization system for this blog.

Writing-wise, Paul claims the song Is 80:20 Lennon-McCartney, meaning it was primarily written by John… who later referred to it as a “throwaway” so maybe his percent of the writing didn’t matter that much.  The working title was “You Don’t Get Me.”  What inspired him to write this song?  According to Wikipedia:

  • Jonathan Gould claims Lennon wrote the song in response to an official press release promoting a Sinatra TV special as a show for those who were “tired of kid singers wearing mops of hair thick enough to hide a crate of melons.” This story is from Gould’s “Can’t Buy Me Love” but no Lennon biography or Lennon quotation is cited to substantiate this theory.
  • Journalist Richard Simpson claims Lennon wrote the song in response to Mick Jagger of the Rolling Stones boasting about his pop-star girlfriend (“bird” in British Isles slang) Marianne Faithfull.

Subtlety, thy name is Lennon.

George and Paul performed the dual guitar melody.  The original version featured George playing his Rickenbacker 12-string guitar and John and Paul laughing hysterically while recording the vocal track.  Lucky for us, it appeared on “Anthology 2.”

As follows is the version that appears on “Revolver.”  Apple Corps., don’t screw me over on this today too.

Quoth Wikipedia, “‘And Your Bird Can Sing’ was used as the theme song of the Beatles’ cartoon series during its third season.  I think I found that introduction on YouTube – I say think because I’ve been drinking and this clip is hella trippy.  Then again, maybe I’m just not used to ’60s animation.  Either way, enjoy.

As I mentioned way up at the tip-top, I had heard this song before, and it is one that I enjoy.




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