Day 137: “I’ve Got a Feeling”

When was it recorded?   Jan. 22-30, 1969

When was it first released, and on which album?  May 8, 1970 on “Let It Be”

Who wrote it?  Lennon-McCartney

Have I heard this song before?  No

What my research dug up:

“I’ve Got a Feeling” is Paul and John’s first equal collaboration since “Baby, You’re a Rich Man,” which I talked about on Day 17. Just like that song, this is the result of John and Paul mashing together two bits of songs they were individually working on (actually three if you count the part of “Watching Rainbows” that snuck in there too). That said, they did actually work together to combine the two parts. As such, Alan Pollack noted, “The lyrics sport that clever yin/yang alternating wordplay that’s a Beatles favorite way back to their early period. Here we find the ‘Oh yeah/oh no,’ ‘wandering/wondering,’ and ‘hard year/good year.’”

Paul’s piece was also called “I’ve Got a Feeling,” dedicated to his budding romance with then-girlfriend, soon-wife Linda Eastman.  John’s piece was “Everyone Had a Hard Year,” later “Everybody Had a Hard Year.” John at least was having a hard year – he had recently divorced his first wife, Cynthia, was estranged from their son, Julian, was addicted to heroin, and had been arrested along with Yoko Ono for drug possession. Additionally, Ono had recently suffered a miscarriage and John was pretty much done with being a Beatle, mentally and emotionally. Talk about a Trauma Conga Line. John actually recorded a demo for the song during the White Album sessions.

(Not sure what makes it “upgraded,” but there ya go.) Quoth Wikipedia, “In the film ‘Let It Be,’ Lennon jokingly claimed he had written ‘Everybody Had a Hard Year’ the night before.”

The Beatles first recorded “I’ve Got a Feeling” Jan. 22, 1969 during their first session after filming the “Let It Be” documentary. They recorded more takes over the next few days. One of their early takes (from Jan. 23) appeared on “Anthology 3.”

According to the Beatles Bible, “The Beatles continued work on the song on [Jan.] 27 and 28, but it wasn’t until the Apple rooftop performance that they recorded the final version. They recorded two versions of ‘I’ve Got A Feeling,’ the first of which appeared on the ‘Let It Be’ album and in the film.” Here’s the album version.

I’m fighting the embed function at the moment, but if you follow the link below, we have the Beatles performing it during the Rooftop concert (yeah, it’s the same, but *~visuals~*). There’s a view ad that plays before it starts, so stick it out.  Everything spoken is in English and nothing pops up or downloads when you click on shit, I swear.

The version from “Let It Be… Naked” is “a composite edit of the two rooftop performances, prepared especially for the release” (Beatles Bible).

Pollack’s thoughts on “I’ve Got a Feeling” weren’t super positive.  He “got a feeling they’re really not trying very hard with this one; that what may have started off as a really clever idea is eventually held back from greatness by the relative mediocrity of its raw materials, and the extent to which its two parts fail to contrast to sufficient effect.”  I don’t know, I like it well enough.  Watching the live performance is definitely the highlight.




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