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Don’t Forget the Songs-365: Mach Tres: Day 266
Thurs. Dec 19, 2013

“Watching Rainbows”
The Beatles

1969

“♫ Instead
of watching
rainbows/
I’m gonna
make me
some
♫”

I woke up this morning to the sound of “Watching Rainbows” in my head. “Rainbows” is one of the plethora of songs the Beatles recorded at Twickenham Studios during the Get Back Sessions while filming Let It Be. Often bootleg, the genesis of this John Lennon creation seems to stem from a line of John’s “I Am The Walrus;” on “Rainbows” John sings, “♫ Standing in the garden, waiting for the sun to shine ♫” which is similar to the lyrical refrain from “Walrus’s” “♫ Sitting in an English Garden, waiting for the sun ♫.” The difference between the two songs, besides the psychedelics which run rampant on “Walrus” is that Lennon’s song persona seems to be more proactive in “Rainbows.” Instead of just “Watching Rainbows,” John sings, “I’m gonna make me some.”

“Rainbows” seems to be a metaphor for dreams or songs, speaking of Lennon talked about the magic of songwriting when he once said, “When real music comes to me – the music of the spheres, the music that surpasses understanding – that has nothing to do with me, cause I’m just the channel. The only joy for me is for it to be given to me, and to transcribe it like a medium… those moments are what I live for.”

Lennon was a born artist. Even as a child, John can attest, that he always seems to have a different perspective from the other children in his class as he once explained, “In one way, I was always hip. I was hip in kindergarten. I was different from the others. There was something wrong with me, I thought, because I seemed to see things people didn’t see. I always saw things in a hallucinatory way.”

John used his child-like perception, lyrically, in songs like “Strawberry Fields Forever,” “I Am The Walrus,” “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds” and even “Watching Rainbows.” John talked about transforming the visions he saw in his head into his art when Lennon once said, “Surrealism had a great effect on me because then I realized that the imagery in my mind wasn’t insanity. Surrealism to me is reality.”

Since, “Watching” was left on the cutting room floor; The Beatles did use some elements of this rare cut on other songs. You may recognize the guitar from “Rainbows” as being the main riff from Let It Be’s “I’ve Got A Feeling.” And Lennon resurrected the “shoot” part on his most famous Abbey Road cut, “Come Together.”

Although “Watching Rainbows” has been unreleased for over forty years, there is still something wondrous about rediscovering the magical beauty in this rare Beatles treasure that not many Fab Four fans have heard. But Lennon doesn’t mind if some of his more devoted fans have yet to unearth this treasured recording as John once explained, “When you do something noble and beautiful and nobody noticed, do not be sad. For the sun every morning is a beautiful spectacle and yet most of the audience still sleeps.” John Lennon and Beatles fans of the world unite. It’s time for you to get out of bed, run outside and catch some rainbows. Even if it’s not raining you can still catch them, start by “Watching Rainbows” and then open your mind—it’s easy if you try.

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