Beatles – Yer Blues

Great hard bluesy song on one of my favorite Beatle albums…The White Album. This is one reason I like the White Album so much. The variety it gives you is off the charts…but there is no mistaking who the band is in every song. The Beatles kept their style through the lush soft songs to the hard ones.

What I like about it is the rawness. This song and Helter Skelter have enough to spare.

The room they recorded this in was called Room 2A, which was next to the control room of EMI Studio Two and was a mere 8 ft. by 15.5 ft. The room had been used for storing four-track machines before it was emptied. It was very tight quarters for The Beatles once they set everything up. That added to the sound. They jammed together from 7pm to 5am and after 14 takes produced this song.

John Lennon wrote this in India while The Beatles were on a retreat learning meditation with the Maharishi.

Lennon was self-conscious about singing the blues.

John Lennon: “There was a self-consciousness about suddenly singing blues,” John continues. “Like everybody else, we were all listening to Sleepy John Estes and all that in art school (in the late ’50’s).  But to sing it, was something else. I was self-conscious about doing it.”

Ringo Starr: “We were just in an 8 foot room, with no separation, just doing what we do best: playing.”

A 9 minute version with Lennon, Eric Clapton, Keith Richards and Mitch Mitchell was performed on the Rolling Stones’ Rock ‘n’ Roll Circus. They called themselves the Dirty Mac.

Yer Blues

Yes, I’m lonely
Want to die
Yes, I’m lonely
Want to die
If I ain’t dead already
Oh, girl, you know the reason why

In the morning
Want to die
In the evening
Want to die
If I ain’t dead already
Oh, girl, you know the reason why

My mother was of the sky
My father was of the earth
But I am of the universe
And you know what it’s worth

I’m lonely
Want to die
If I ain’t dead already
Oh, girl, you know the reason why

The eagle picks my eye
The worm he licks my bone
I feel so suicidal
Just like Dylan’s Mr. Jones

Lonely
Want to die
If I ain’t dead already
Oh, girl, you know the reason why

Black cloud crossed my mind
Blue mist round my soul
Feel so suicidal
Even hate my rock and roll

Want to die
Yeah, want to die
If I ain’t dead already
Oh, girl, you know the reason why

 

Author: badfinger20 (Max)

Power Pop fan, Baseball fan, old movie and tv show fan... and a songwriter, bass and guitar player.

31 thoughts on “Beatles – Yer Blues”

  1. The Beatles before they even became The Beatles were a great rock & roll band. While the sound isn’t great, you can still hear this nicely on the album “Live! at the Star-Club in Hamburg, Germany; 1962”. As such, playing the blues wasn’t a big leap.

    Apart from the original, I also dig the Esher demo version of “Yer Blues,” which is included on the 50th anniversary edition that came out in 2018. To me these demos are the actual highlights of the reissue.

    Giles Martin has done an outstanding job remixing their records. One can only imagine what a thrill ride it must be as a producer when you get to work on Beatles reissues.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Live! at the Star-Club… I purchased the album in 1979 and it remains in my top 10 in live albums. The edge they had was great.

      Giles did a wonderful job. I always thought the White Album was muddy sounding…when I heard this remix I feel in love with it again. I think this is the way they wanted to be to begin with.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. To me the highlight of Giles’ work thus far is Sgt. Pepper. The thing that fascinates me the most about the White Album reissue are the Esher demos. They almost have a-sitting-around-the-campfire feel to it. You can also feel the fun The Beatles had recording these demos at George’s house.

        One wishes somebody would have captured that on film…

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Yes you brought up a great point. Bailey my son has the remixed White Album including the Esher demos on vinyl as well. I do like those a lot. It’s like we are in the same room as them.

        It was nice to hear the almost beginnings of the songs. The mood they are in is great.

        If you want to hear something fun…Beatle fans would enjoy this…it shows their humor without the public around. The Rubbersoul sessions…they are goofy and a lot of fun.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. That is awesome. I had no idea about that footage and not watched it before. The Beatles could be real goofballs. They had a great sense of humor.

        I randomly recall a story my guitar teacher back in Germany told me. Supposedly, since he had spent some time in Hamburg, Ringo was once asked by a German reporter whether he had learned any German. His response: Oh, yes – French fries! (In Germany they call it pommes frites). You can just totally picture it! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      4. LOL..great story about Ringo. I love that period by them.

        I was so looking forward to Get Back by Peter Jackson with the reworking of the 55 hours of never seen footage of Let It Be this August in the theaters…but of course they have delayed it a year because of the virus.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. You embedded “Happiness Is A Warm Gun,” but that’s OK; I’ve lost track of how many times I’ve listened to the white album, so “Yer Blues” is burned into my brain. I like the “Dirty Mac” version of this at least as well as the original. It’s a great song.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Well when I got there…it was Blackbird! Youtube does this once in a while. I don’t know why but I think it clicks over to the next song. I wish I knew what caused it.

      I like the Dirty Mac versioin also…that was a great version…that session and The Who’s performance was my favorite part of ithe show.

      Like

    1. I read a bio of the Stones…the guy that wrote it was there…he said that the Who were great and the Stones were a bit flat but Lennon made the hair on your neck rise up….he was that good.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That’s awesome. He certainly seems it from that video. I mean he’s probably stoned or even doped up by that point and he just seems so non-chalant while absolutely killing it. It’s a really good look at Lennon’s presence. He was obviously a great songwriter, underrated player and deeply artistic soul but he had a presence–vocally and in person that is just something intangible that makes him…well, John Lennon.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. That voice…that voice could cut through fog. I can’t imagine what it sounded like live.
        Clapton and Richards were not trying to add too much…just to fill it out for Lennon.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. The Who were the stars of that to me…and this performance…my two favorite parts of it. The Stones were good but a bit flat after staying up all night… plus Brian looking his best lol.

      Like

      1. Oh you mean A Quick One While He’s Away…that is brilliant. That was the start of their peak…that went to around 76 as far as live.

        Like

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