Friday, 25 March 2011

12:22 Here Comes The Sun (Again)

Here Comes The Sun is an uncharacteristically sweet and winsome track by George Harrison. It has an incredibly simple verse and chorus perfectly balanced by a odd time almost prog-rock bridge.

What else stops us breaking out the sunblock? The George Martin version of the 'wall of sound' arrangement for a start – a weird mix of orchestra (warm strings and bright piccolos – like the sun...geddit?), steam powered synths (playing a counter melody), rich vocal harmonies way back in the mix, in background and a distinctive high capoed acoustic guitar doubling vocal melody.

We've encounter Ticket 4 before, where the band fashion intros out of choruses, but here the outro is based on part of bridge which then finishes on a single chord (Ticket 18). Nice touch.

The song is ladened with hooks (Ticket 3). Not just the guitar doubling the vocals. The acoustic lick at the end of the chorus may be an obvious one but notice how the 3 over 4 hemiola (Ticket 29) prefigures the actual 3/8 arpeggios in the bridge (Ticket 9).

Another hook that might not be so obvious is Harrison's “do do do do” in the chorus. Play those four notes (C# A B C#). Can you tell what it is? Right. It's the same tune as he's singing on “Little Darling”. No wonder that ear worm is jammed in good and tight by the end of the song. You're hearing it every couple of seconds!

It's not something I can reduce to a formula, but there some beautiful melodic stuff going down in the chorus. Sun in the first line is sung as an A over an A chord, the second line is an exact repeat melodically but we end with the A sitting on top of a B7 chord. So the super stable root note A has become a super unstable b7. What are we gonna do next? The D# in B7 pulls up to E (you can hear it clearly in the cello line) over the A chord and we resolve. That there is a thing of beauty.

Here's someone who spotted the do do do do/little darling link

And for something completely different (and a lot classier)

Next time - things get heavy...

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