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John Lennon (John Winston Ono Lennon) [9 October 1940 – 8 December 1980] was (and still is) perhaps one of the best music artists ever. His song, ‘Imagine‘ left other music writers aghast. He was an active member of ‘The Beatles’, one of the most famous British Pop Rock bands ever. Together with Paul McCartneyGeorge Harrison and Ringo Starr, he completely revolutionized Pop Rock. Another of his best selling songs was “Jealous Guy”, which I’ll be reviewing today. Let’s get started.

John Lennon's signature

John Lennon’s signature

History: ‘Jealous Guy’ was a song from the 1971 album ‘Imagine’. The origin of this song bore it’s roots in India. The Beatles, on their visit to India, had attended a lecture by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. The lecture inspired both Lennon and McCartney, and they both composed two different songs based on the same ideas. The Beatles didn’t accept John Lennon’s version of the song. While Paul McCartney’s song was a huge hit, John Lennon’s song didn’t perform too well. Determined as he was, Lennon kept releasing new versions of the song (There are now 3 versions, one which was demoed in George Harrison’s ‘Esher‘ house, one in which John Lennon gave the backing vocals, and one was made at Apple Studios. Finally, John Lennon scrapped the lyrics and gave the song a total makeover, and it resulted in the song ‘Jealous Guy’. The bass guitar of the song was given by Klaus Voormann, a friend of The Beatles. There is only one version of this song, which has a duration of 4 minutes and 14 seconds. [Source – Wikipedia]

What it tries to convey to us: My father is a BIG Beatles fan. According to him, this song was written by Lennon after he had split from The Beatles. History says that Yoko Ono wanted to be the fifth member of The Beatles. Despite many attempts to convince her, she did not heed to their request and demanded that she be the fifth member. Finally, The Beatles decided to split; as they knew she would have made matters even worse. John Lennon then dedicated this song to Paul McCartney and tried and tell him that the split was his fault, and not Yoko Ono’s. But by then, it was too late. The entire song is based on Lennon’s apology to McCartney.

Review: The song starts with a beautiful piano tune (Courtesy Nicky Hopkins). At 00:15, John Lennon starts the vocals. The pitch and smoothness of his voice makes the song so realistic, it hurts. The lyrics of the song are SIMPLY OUTSTANDING. If you listen carefully, you can hear the acoustic guitar playing in the background (Courtesy John Lennon, Joey Molland and Tom Evans). At 00:42, the bass guitar kicks in (Klaus Voormann).At 01:10, the drums are introduced and the tempo of the song is set to a slow and steady beat (Courtesy Jim Keltner). You’ll hear the harmonium (John Barham) if you listen carefully. An awesome fact about this song is that the bass guitar is used as a lead instrument, and the harmonium is used to give the song a steady rhythm. Everything blends together ever so perfectly, and the outcome is a mind blowing song. John Lennon starts his whistling at 02:07. Needless to say, the whistles also add an extra bit of emotion to the song. At 02:36, John Lennon takes over again. The chorus is simply amazing. You’ll hear the vibraphone very clearly at 03:07 when Lennon is saying “I was trying to catch your eye, thought that you was trying to hide”. The song fades along with the vibraphone at 04:04.

Rating: It’s a real shame that The Beatles didn’t accept this song in their album ‘The Beatles (White Album)”. John Lennon has absolutely nailed this song! 10/10! R.I.P John Lennon! The world will always remember you for who you were.

Lyrics for ‘Jealous Guy’ :

Download link for ‘Jealous Guy’ :

Album art

‘Jealous Guy’ is a song from the album ‘Imagine’


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