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I haven’t used the blog in a while… a pitfall of actually writing a proper column for a proper outlet.

As such I thought I’d use it in the interim to write on a few things I maybe needed more than 140 characters for. So here goes.

I thought I’d start doing a few Spotify playlists, just for a bit of fun. And so here’s my first.

To celebrate Sir Paul McCartney’s 75th, the fact that yesterday was Father’s day and my dearly departed Dad got me hooked on The Beatles, and also just because I’m a nerd, I thought I’d have a go at creating The Black Album.

The Black Album is a concept of what The Beatles’ very last album might have been, had they hung together through 1970/1, by using the tracks on their earliest solo works to create a compilation that works as an album.

I’ve opted only for their very first solo albums (of their own work, as Ringo had 2 covers albums before his eponymous debut in 73). Some people allow McCartney’s Ram into the mix, but mostly only so they have an excuse to use Lennon’s Imagine, too. But I’ve stuck with their debuts. 

Surprisingly, or perhaps not, it is Harrison heavy. All Things Must Pass is an absolute belter of an album and shows, I think, in many ways the frustrations a great songwriter must have had sharing a studio with the unstoppable genius that was the Lennon and McCartney partnership.

The album is designed to be played as an LP, with tracks 1-7 forming Side One… well, 1-6 with 7 as an interlude. Tracks 8-13 form Side Two and are deliberately more contemplative and sombre in mood, a reflection that this was to be the ending of the band. I wanted it to reflect the closing of Abbey Road, (which is in itself a perfect send off for the band) with Golden Slumbers / Carry That Weight / The End, and to that end the climax is all Harrison, not just because it ensures an even flow, but simply because the three tracks rest together, I think, beautifully.

But then, much as with Sgt Peppers and A Day in the Life, I thought it needed a full stop. And so it has one, named for the overarching theme of all The Beatles work: Love.

Enjoy. Let me know what you think x

Buxton’s Beatles Black Album