Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Don't Let Me Down

Way leads to way, as it's wont to, and trying to find Paul McCartney inducting James Taylor into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame leads, inexorably, to watching the final rooftop concert by the Beatles yet again.

I've always loved the look on John Lennon's face of slight embarrassment mixed with his trademark mischievousness when he forgets the words and just starts singing gobbledygook—it's at the 1:05 mark.

"This type of music's all right in its place." 

I love that Ringo, behind him, is laughing. But what's even better is the look Paul and John share right after as they wordlessly agree to get back on track together. And that smile on John's face, one of quietly confident pleasure, of absolutely secure trust in his musical partner, proves—as if we didn't already have more than enough proof—that John was right on target when he later said that no matter how bad things got between them, whenever they started playing music, it was always good.

But it's the very brief look John and George share shortly afterwards, during the following chorus, the small nod George gives just before the camera cuts away, that drives home that before the brilliant songwriting, before the groundbreaking studio work, before the unprecedented fame and fortune, they were very simply the finest rock and roll band ever.

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