Thursday, March 8, 2012

Helter Skelter


Helter Skelter paulmccartney.filminspector.com
"Helter Skelter" was paired with "Got To Get You Into My Life" on singles releases. In the United States "Got To Get You Into My Life" was the A-side, but in many other markets "Helter Skelter" was the A-side.



"Helter Skelter" is one of Paul McCartney's songs from the Beatles' White Album. The Beatles recorded "Helter Skelter (which, incidentally, is simply a British phrase for playground equipment) on 18 July and 9/10 September 1968.

Helter Skelter paulmccartney.filminspector.com


Paul composed "Helter Skelter" as a sort of response to a dare:
I was in Scotland and I read in Melody Maker that Pete Townshend had said: 'We've just made the raunchiest, loudest, most ridiculous rock 'n' roll record you've ever heard.' I never actually found out what track it was that The Who had made, but that got me going; just hearing him talk about it. So I said to the guys, 'I think we should do a song like that; something really wild.' And I wrote Helter Skelter. 
You can hear the voices cracking, and we played it so long and so often that by the end of it you can hear Ringo saying,'I've got blisters on my fingers'. We just tried to get it louder: 'Can't we make the drums sound louder?' That was really all I wanted to do – to make a very loud, raunchy rock 'n' roll record with The Beatles.
The Who song was "I Can See For Miles," which actually is a pretty tame song, so it's unclear what Townshend was thinking. Paul also has said:
With Helter Skelter all I wanted to do was to make a very loud, raunchy rock 'n' roll record. And I think it's a pretty good one.
It seems apparent from the way he plays it at certain events that "Helter Skelter is one of Paul's personal favorites. Then again, it is appropriate for certain raucous environments in which, say, "Martha My Dear" or "Rocky Raccoon" might not come across as well, so there may be a certain calculation to playing it at times, too. Some claim that "Helter Skelter" is the first metal song, a genre which blossomed in the 1970s.

Helter Skelter paulmccartney.filminspector.com
This was a 1982 single released in Australia.

Out of his entire catalog, Paul chose to sing "Helter Skelter" on the marquee of the Ed Sullivan Theater for the David Letterman show. I think this is a terrific performance of this song, Paul's voice is still just perfect for it. His band is real tight, too, though they don't have quite that occasional much-appreciated quirkiness that the originals. More of a tribute-band feel when they do Beatles stuff, which isn't so terrible and if probably the best you can do, I'm just giving my personal reaction. By the way, one of the Holy Grail recordings in the EMI catalog is a 27-minute version of the Beatles jamming on "Helter Skelter" which may come to light someday. However, George Martin considered the idea of releasing the full version but vetoed, stating that people "won't stand" the extended version.

Helter Skelter paulmccartney.filminspector.com


In the US, the "Got To Get You Into My Life/Helter Skelter" single was the final Beatles Top Ten hit when released as a single in 1976.

Below, Paul sings "Helter Skelter" live at the 30:22 mark.



When I get to the bottom I go
back to the top of the slide
Where I stop and I turn
and I go for a ride
Till I get to the bottom
and I see you again
Yeah yeah yeah hey

Do you, don't you want me to love you
I'm coming down fast
but I'm miles above you
Tell me tell me tell me
come on tell me the answer
Well you may be a lover
but you ain't no dancer

Now helter skelter helter skelter
Helter skelter yeah
Ooh!

Will you, won't you want me to make you
I'm coming down fast but
don't let me break you
Tell me tell me tell me the answer
You may be a lover but
you ain't no dancer

Look out helter skelter helter skelter
Helter skelter ooh

Look out, cos here she comes

When I get to the bottom I go
back to the top of the slide
And I stop and I turn
and I go for a ride
And I get to the bottom
and I see you again
Yeah yeah yeah

Well do you, don't you
want me to make you
I'm coming down fast but
don't let me break you
Tell me tell me tell me the answer
You may be a lover but
you ain't no dancer

Look out helter skelter helter skelter
Helter skelter

Look out helter skelter
She's coming down fast
Yes she is
Yes she is coming down fast

Helter Skelter paulmccartney.filminspector.com


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