During a conversation with some friends on Saturday night, the topic of the Beatles was brought to the table. Most of the conversation was remembrances of the excitement the Beatles brought to the world of music. Most of our group remembered the enormous popularity of the Beatles and someone even brought up the term, “Beatlemania.”
Formed in Liverpool, England, in 1960, the Beatles were one of the most commercially successful and critically acclaimed acts in the history of popular music.
Saturday was John Lennon’s birthday. He would have been 70 on Oct. 9 had he not been killed in 1980 by a deranged fan at the age of 40.
Of course, talk about music with my friends means that Clay Aiken and his amazing musicianship will be a part of the conversation. After some discussion, we decided that Clay had performed three Beatles songs and one song from the pen of John Lennon.
As a contestant on American Idol in 2003, Clay sang Here, There and Everywhere. According to Wikipedia:
“Here, There and Everywhere” is a song written primarily by Paul McCartney, recorded for the Beatles 1966 album Revolver. In his biography Many Years From Now, McCartney said the song is one of his favorites. Beatles’ producer George Martin has also mentioned it as one of his favorite McCartney songs. John Lennon reportedly told McCartney it was “the best tune on the album” and said in his 1980 Playboy interview it was “one of my favorite songs of the Beatles.” Mojo ranked it the 4th greatest song of all time in 2000.
Clay included Can’t Buy Me Love as a part of the Jukebox Tour. As part of the 60’s medley, the song was a great hit.
According to Songfacts.com this was one of the first Pop songs to start with the chorus rather than a verse. That was producer George Martin’s idea.
When pressed by American journalists in 1966 to reveal the song’s “true” meaning, McCartney denied that “Can’t Buy Me Love” was about prostitution, stating that, although it was open to interpretation, that suggestion was going too far, saying: “The idea behind it was that all these material possessions are all very well, but they won’t buy me what I really want. ” Although he was to later comment: “It should have been ‘Can Buy Me Love’ ” when reflecting on the perks that money and fame had brought him
Can’t Buy Me Love” was recorded on 29 January 1964 in Paris, France.
In March, 2010, Clay sang a touching performance of In My Life. During the recording of his PBS Special, Clay introduced his former teachers and asked his 6th grade teacher to take a special bow. He told the audience that this special lady was the reason he made it through 6th grade. He then sang an amazing rendition of In My Life.
John Lennon wrote the original song, but McCartney contributed a great deal to the final version. The song was released on the 1965 album Rubber Soul. The song is ranked #5 on the list of the Beatles 100 Greatest Songs. It is also ranked 23rd on Rolling Stone list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.
In 1971, John Lennon released an album titled Imagine. The title song was released as a single in the United States and reached number three on the Billboard Hot 100. Lennon always said that Imagine was as good as anything he had ever written with the Beatles. Rolling Stone also made the list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time at #3
Clay sang Imagine as part of the finale of “Bringing Broadway Home”, a wonderful benefit concert for the North Carolina Theatre. Clay was joined by Lauren Kennedy, Sharon Lawrence, Terrence Mann, and Quiana Parler to close the exciting concert held on June 21, 2010.
Each of these performances by Clay Aiken is amazing. Which one is your favorite? Did I leave out any songs? A big “thank-you” to LovesClaysVoice for her help in finding the videos for this article.