Paul McCartney’s “Worst” Beatle Songs

paul mccartney songs

Editor’s Note. This post has sparked quite a lot of commentary, which we appreciate. It’s a measure of how potent these songs are that we’re still discussing and debating them over 50 years later. For those of you who don’t know us, everyone here is a huge Beatles fan, so we are offering this post in the spirit of respect and deep admiration. You may of course disagree with Adam’s point-of-view, but we’re all fans…

Fab Four purists will likely claim the Beatles rarely wrote a bad song. Of course, it must be acknowledged that the Liverpool quartet’s output was undeniably consistent. Over the course of nearly a decade, they would craft endless hit singles and a wealth of innovative album tracks, set to be revered by generations to come.

Their bassist Paul McCartney will always be celebrated for his role in arguably the finest songwriting duo to grace the pop charts and his music ultimately helped propel the Beatles to superstardom.

Yet whilst he was prolific, composing over one hundred tunes for the band, McCartney was still prone to penning some questionable songs – inevitably the quality of his work varied across their twelve studio albums.

Critics often accuse him of being too whimsical or perhaps corny, highlighted further when compared to John Lennon’s typical aggression and raw nature.

So which are the worst Beatles songs by Paul McCartney?

Hold Me Tight

“Hold Me Tight” features as an album track on the Beatles’ second LP With The Beatles, yet it was actually recorded during the Please Please Me sessions before the release of their debut album.

Composed by McCartney in 1961, the song formed part of their live shows during the early sixties before the Beatles had signed a record deal. Both he and Lennon have been known to openly and publicly pan the track.

“(It was) a failed attempt at a single,” McCartney went on to recall. “Which then became an acceptable album filler.”

The song itself can be considered labored and repetitive, leaning heavily on its main hook that circles around the track’s title. It does showcase some nice melodic moments and noteworthy harmonies.

But overall, “Hold Me Tight” falls rather flat, an early Beatles throwaway number that is somewhat amateurish.

“It was a pretty poor song,” Lennon stated during an interview in 1980. “I was never really interested in it.”

Maxwell’s Silver Hammer

 Abbey Road is highly praised for its creativity and originality. This is particularly evident during Side-A which begins with the epic grooves of “Come Together,” George Harrison’s classic ballad “Something” and the rich, grizzly haze of Lennon’s “I Want You (She’s So Heavy)”

And so including the LP’s third song, McCartney’s underwhelming “Maxwell’s Silver Hammer,” should be seen as something of a misstep.

John Lennon once criticized the tune saying it was “more of Paul’s granny music.”

Inspired by tales of a murderous hammer-wielding medical student, the track is eerily paced, abandoning the listener to slowly wade through thick metaphorical mud.

The lyrics are dreary and often nondescript. Even the potentially catchy chorus lines feel overly simplistic and a little forced.

“The worst session ever,” Ringo Starr insisted when commenting on the tune’s recording. “(It) went on for weeks.”

Mother Nature’s Son

Written during the Beatles’ 1968 visit to see the Maharishi in India, McCartney was said to be inspired by the guru’s speech on nature.

“Mother Nature’s Son” eventually found its way onto The White Album and its famously gigantic tracklist. The recording is performed solely by McCartney, sung whilst playing guitar at the same time and across a huge twenty-five takes.

The track was composed during the height of a Beatles ‘White Album disagreement’, Lennon was typically agitated by his songwriting partner for laying down the recording on his own, without significant input from the rest of the band.

UK broadsheet newspaper The Independent listed “Mother Nature’s Son” at number 15 out of 30 on its ranking of the best White Album songs and was even referred to as an ‘emotional song.’

This tune is perhaps too simple and offers little excitement throughout. The verses and chorus sections have some charm but lack any real purpose, in fact, the catchiest points of the song are the ‘doo doo’s’ – but seem slightly pointless in their inclusion.

Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da

Again found on The White Album, this McCartney composition is popular amongst hordes of passionate Beatles fans. But in truth “Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da” is below par in comparison to much of their other work around this period.

Firstly, the song has an awkward beat and grimacing piano notes that feel almost ‘skiffle band-esque’. It has a bunch of throwaway lyrics that, while typical of McCartney’s other character-based tales, seem less layered or rich compared to “Eleanor Rigby” for example.

According to Beatles biographer Mark Lewisohn, McCartney recorded this song over sixty times and still wasn’t happy with it.

John Lennon “openly and vocally detested” the song and even decided to get high during its production. So when it came to laying down his piano track, Lennon played it faster and louder than originally intended, the mess making it onto the final mix.

Rocky Raccoon

The White Album is rightly celebrated for its daring experimentation with a range of different music styles and genres.

Yet in “Rocky Raccoon,” the Fab Four perhaps took their explorations a step too far. The song holds fond memories for numerous Beatles fans but in reality, it falls short of the high standards set by the band up to this point.

It has loosely been referred to as a ‘country ballad.’ McCartney even adopts a cowboy-inspired accent to aid the theme and said “I was basically spoofing a folksinger.”

Lennon injects some harmonica filled with a southern swagger. Beatles Producer George Martin contributes piano parts for the track, which are well played yet slightly grate on the ear, sounding like they’ve been picked straight out of a jolly saloon. Even Martin labeled the track as ‘filler’ used in order to pad out the runtime of a double album.

Tell Me What You See

Fans first heard “Tell Me What You See” on the Beatles’ 1965 album Help! To this day it is still remembered as a mediocre album track amongst an LP full of wonderful tunes.

The use of a German electro-mechanical keyboard called a Hohner Pianet, also found on the song “The Night Before,” offers a sweeter and light-hearted feel to the track which does provide some charm.

However, at that time the UK music press deemed it “not awfully memorable.” The song is said to be influenced by a folk sound with which the Beatles began to experiment with around this period.

Unfortunately, the track’s arrangement and recording aren’t particularly inspiring and even come across as dry, especially when surrounded by far more exciting works like “I’ve Just Seen A Face” and “Yesterday.”

When I’m Sixty Four

“When I’m Sixty-Four” was apparently one of the first songs Paul McCartney ever penned, written around 1956 when he was aged just 14.

“Rock and Roll was about to happen that year,” McCartney recalls fondly. “I was still a little bit ‘cabaret’ minded.’”

Mainly featuring only, a simple trio of clarinets throughout, its sound is far less energetic and more empty than typical Beatles records. “The song is not mocking in its tone,” The New York Times’s Richard Goldstein explains “but an honest vision is ruined by the background which seeks to enhance it.”The song also suffers from being placed alongside some of the most innovative pop and guitar music ever created in Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.

Whilst “When I’m Sixty-Four” may have been intended as a light breeze blowing through buzzing psychedelia, the track perhaps sounds dreary in comparison.

It has been described as “McCartney’s side of Elvis’s corny hokum” and “an audience charming ‘vaudeville sketch’ (light-hearted but lacking purpose) that Lennon detested the most.”

-Adam Leadbeater

Photo: Getty Images

PS — While we’re on the topic of Rock History, you might enjoy our YouTube series of one-minute daily nuggets of classic moments…

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102 comments on “Paul McCartney’s “Worst” Beatle Songs

  1. Peter Denmark

    Seriously? Most of the above songs are gold compared to the majority of the rubbish tunes found on the White Album (Helter Skelter springs to mind).

    • Can NOT disagree more, mate. The birth of Death Metal?

      Ah, alas. As ever more, to each is own…

      • Gregory S McGill

        Alas it all contributes to same end…we all bought the albums and cherish them..iy was after all our beloved Fab Four..

    • Terry Takvorian

      The worst song I ever heard by the Beatles was without a doubt Wild Honey Pie.

      • Danny Menlove

        That’s a joke song, but yeah, not very melodic. What about Revolution 9?

      • I don’t care for it either

        • Sonja G.

          I like the songs mentioned.maybe john was jealous or just wasnt into it I guess.im sure theres ‘a song for everyone’

    • Ditto. So many of these have rich harmonies that are what made (make?) them Fab.

  2. Some of the songs mentioned are quite good but real bad ones weren’t: Wild Honey Pie, Why Don’t We Do it in the Road, Oh Darling, Drive My Car, Helter Skelter.

    • Danny Rohr

      I liked drive my car way better then the other 3 you mentioned

    • JohnyLydon

      Drive My Car is a brilliant song from Rubber Soul which was a sign of Beatles maturing

  3. Mark Hudson

    You need an injection of humour and whimsy mate! These seven songs are amongst Paul’s “worst?” Well, they are better than the output of many other songwriters combined. “Mother Nature’s Son” a poor song? C’mon – you’re having a laugh. And by the way, just because the notoriously spiky John didn’t like a song was not really a reliable yardstick as to its quality. 🙂

    • Richard Cipolla

      Have to agree with the comment that John’s songs should not be the measuring yardstick. That being said, The above Paul songs are very fine and show his ability to be versatile.

      • James Hancock

        I wholeheartedly agree. Not every song can be a Yesterday,a Something or A Day In The Life. And I rather like most of those songs listed. Have people forgotten that, songs are sometimes songs are written for sheer joy and entertainment? So, all of the Beatles have puke on Maxwell’s Silver Hammer as being their worst track ever. I’m going to remind the public of some jokes of sibg writing examples of each of the other three.. even though I might enjoy listening to these on occadion; John wrote Bungalow , George wrote Piggies and Ringo had Don’t Pass Me By and collaborated with George on Octopuses Garden. Surely, these aren’t masterpieces.

    • Marla Hart

      🎸🙋‍♀️This is ridiculous. Don’t ever take these songs from me or the world. ..& who cares what Lennon thinks?

    • Thomas Layman

      As a teenager I was head over heels for the Beatles and connected with most any song they did but must admit the Granny songs gave me pause. Then I realized Paul was just tipping his hat to his forbears in a very nice way. “Tell Me What You See” is a gorgeous tune and touches me deeply both now and then.

    • I think Lennon even replied with envy by writing “ Child of Nature”. Always competing which kept them so amazing. I wouldn’t by any stretch of the imagination put “Mother Nature’s Child” into a Paul’s worst bucket. Maybe you should stop listening to Oasis who would die to be the Beatles but will never be the bottoms of their Beatle Boots.

  4. Andru Reeve


  5. Mark: I think you are directing your reply to Peter, correct. Let’s face it, a “bad” song by The Beatles is just in comparison to their phenomenal output so these rankings are just comparisons of their best and worst. Then again, everybody is entitled to their own opinion. For example, while Yesterday is almost universally adored, although I like it I think it is way overrated. IMO Here, There and Everywhere is a much better song. In fact, I think it’s Paul’s favorite.

    • Mark Hudson

      Nope – my comment is directed to the author, Adam.

      • here, there, and everywhere is a bit bland but touching and somewhat listenable… mainly it sets the stage for one of my favourites, she said, she said : …and she’s making me feel like i’ve never been born

      • Kenny Forgione

        Is this Mark Hudson of “Hudson brothers “ fame? Either way I do agree with what you say about needing a sense of humor and I also think Mother Natures Son is one of the most melodic and sweet songs on the White album

        • Mark Hudson

          Nope – different Mark Hudson although that has come up before!

    • Abner Wizzle

      And I think “Here, There, and Everywhere” is one of Paul’s most blah. It’s treacly and sappy and sleepy. Always skip over it.

      • Andru Reeve

        I completely agree with you! Glad I’m not the only one who despises that song.

      • John Byrnes

        And it was the only one Lennon ever comp!imented Paul on ! 🤡

        • Abner Wizzle

          So what? I still think it stinks.

        • @John Byrnes Probably the one with highest praise from John. But not the *only* one. John also praised All my Loving, Hey Jude, For No one, The fool on the hill. And while it wasn’t direct praise, John said he should have written Oh darling, and was actually resentful that Paul didn’t let him sing it. He was a little jealous of that one, so although somewhat a backhanded compliment, it was a compliment nonetheless.

    • @Avi well said. Paul even said he likes here there and everywhere not necessarily because it was better, but simply because Yesterday got overplayed. Incidentally John was unusually complimentary of here there and everywhere, not critical as was often the case.

  6. Author’s opinion noted.
    However, a bit harsh. The Beatles immense diversity ( mainly Paul’s) on every album is unequaled. They created their own genre.
    Music will always be compared to The Beatles as a measure of competence.

    • John’s music just as diverse.

      • Debra Evans

        John is always tevered as the genious of the duo. However, how many sings of Johns have become classics compared to Pauls. How much more diverse was John than Paul. If you ask people to mention a beatles record, how many pick one of Johns. I think out of the two, Paul was far more diverse, varied and multi genre than John. I like all of the ones listed as Pauls worst, some more than others but non the less liked. There will never be another songwriting duo like them.

    • I really like Maxwell’s. It’s a killer tune.

      • Debra Evans

        I like maxwells silver hammer. Its a bit of fun. Whilstv rngo constantly claims ot took weeks and they were all fed up, it actually only took 3 days. Hypocritically, they didnt complain about one of geroges songs that took 100 takes.

        • NJ Riley

          It was Obladi, Oblada that took weeks and grated on everyone’s nerves, especially John, who finally came up with the piano bit at the beginning.

      • Peter Denmark

        Same here – one of my favourites. At least it is tuneful, unlike a lot of the songs on the White Album.

      • Ivan Pongracic

        “Killer” tune – good one, LOL!!!

  7. You guys know if you say “worst Beatle” anything you’ll garner considerable clicks & replies.

    Good on ya.

    “Mother Nature’s Son” inspires calm. Nothin’ wrong with that. The last time I investigated, at any rate.

    Incidentally, the late, great John Denver loved the song. So much so that he recorded his own version.

    Kix mighty arse, it does…


  8. David Nivison

    “Rocky Raccoon” was obviously intended to be a parody of Dylan, and in that it succeeded brilliantly. My least favorite Beatles song is “Fixing a Hole” on Sgt. Pepper.

    • Elmar Blömer

      Don’t agree at all
      Mc Cartney’s melodies stood the test of Time.
      Rocky Racoon. Definetly one of the best on the WHITE ALBUM!!
      HER NAME WAS MAGILL, SHE CALLED HERSELF LILL, BUT EVERYONE KNEW HER AS NANCY!!! It doesn’t get any better anywhere in Pop Musik 🎶. It’s simple brillant

    • Fixing a hole & it’s getting better IMO are mediocre tunes. Should have been scrapped & replaced by strawberry fields & penny lane. Tjr

  9. paulandlindam

    Hard to think of any really bad McCartney songs on Beatles albums the obvious ones being wild honey pie and why don’t we do it in the road ( which sounds like it should be on the McCartney album)

  10. Really? Abbey road and sgt peppers are full of mediocre songs, and you choose mother’s nature son? White album feels level above.

  11. I love Ob-La -Di, Maxwell,64.
    Can’t stand anything with the eastern mysticism crap, to be honest.

  12. At least you admit “When I’m 64” was written when Paul was only 14, a year before Rock-n-Roll was invented and in comparison to the other songs on one of Rocks greatest albums, It’s a throw away. Under those circumstances, it’s a dam good song. What were you writing when you were 14? Give me a break!

  13. Kevin oshea

    The only really bad song on this is Maxwells

    silver hammer the Beatles hated it and Paul wanted them to practice it for weeks on end as for the other songs are you kidding me? those are very good tunes

  14. Don Birren

    Your bias against Paul’s ‘granny’ songs is evident, and that’s poor writing. Favoritism of certain musical styles should not be a factor when rating the quality of a composition or its recording. If you can’t differentiate the two, you should not attempt this kind of criticism, or you should change the title and approach of this article to “My Least Favorite Paul Songs.”

    By any measure of recording quality, “Why Don’t We Do It in the Road” is one of Paul’s top five, if not the biggest, and stinkiest, turds in the outhouse. But you overlooked that lazy song writing and recording in favor of the granny songs. Seriously, I snore better songs.

    • Huh. I love Why don’t we do it in the road. And it’s one of the Paul tunes that really gets panned.

      • I think what people miss is that Paul never sings that one line exactly the same throughout the entire song. That’s musical creativity mastery. At the same time, you don’t have to enjoy it. Like lightning-fast guitar players who are technically competent but very very boring, usually.

  15. The progression of their songwriting as Beatles within a decade is unmatched. Nothing better than watching all four come together to create magic. As with any type of industry there has to be rubble. That rubble served as fillers, just as todays LP’s have rubble in the mix.

  16. Les Fender

    While he indeed wrote some incredibly great ones, it would be much easier to write a piece on George Harrison’s Worst (really, truly, actually, no quotation marks on Worst) Beatles songs.

  17. I completely disagree with Mother Nature’s Son. It’s a wonderful song and a joy to play on guitar.

  18. David George

    And this is why so many bands today are stuck in a vacuum of mediocrity. All the songs you’ve listed are in complete contrast to many of the other songs on any of these albums. This is one of the many reasons that makes the Beatles unique. Just because you feel the need to write something like this doesn’t mean it’s true. Perfect example of click bait! Oh well… I feel for it!

  19. Sir Douglas

    No such thing as the worst. You seem like a young guy with absolutely no cultural experience in life, or true musical taste.

  20. William Overly

    This critique is way too harsh. Yes, some of McCartney songs are better than others (as are Lennon’s), but most are pretty good.

  21. Adam Leadbeater, you certainly used a “lead” pipe to “beat” Paul over the head in this article! Sorry, but I disagree with you on all the songs you listed. My “worst” Paul Beatles songs are Why Don’t We Do It In The Road, Wild Honey Pie, What Goes On (which he wrote with John & Ringo) and that’s it! He’s written more lousy songs as a solo artist! (like Nod Your Head to name one)

    • Only 1 song belongs on this list: wild honey pie. And you didn’t even include it. Your credibility is shot. Tell me what you see is a fine tune. Rocky raccoon is a lot of fun. When I’m 64? 3rd best song on what is often considered the greatest album ever (I don’t – Sgt Pepper is fine but it’s not even the Beatles best album)

    • -NJ, on solo albums, Paul’s bad songs didn’t get rejected because there wasn’t enough room on the album for it (whereas in The Beatles, some John and George songs being better would prevent Paul’s worst from making it onto the album). So his Beatle catalog was naturally better because of that, and his solo stuff had more duds. And, would you be the bandmate in Wings to tell Paul that his song wasn’t very good??? In the Beatles, John did just that. There you go.

      • NJ Riley

        Jim, even though John didn’t like some of Paul’s songs, that didn’t mean they didn’t get on the album. (e.g. Obladi, Oblada, Honey Pie, and what John called his “Granny Songs.”) And you’re right, most of Paul’s duds were in his solo post-Wings stuff since he had no competition. (Denny Laine & Jimmy McCulloch were allowed to add some of their tunes: Time To Hide, Again and Again and Again, Medicine Jar) From 1971 to 1980 during Wings, the only thing his bandmates complained about was the amount of money (lack thereof) they were being paid. Correct that they probably wouldn’t have complained about any song of his. Most of his Wings stuff was great anyway!

  22. If Lennon was jealous of these songs and bashed them, doesn’t that make them good songs? I’m just saying…

  23. Never fails to amaze me the divergent opinions as to best and worst Beatles songs. Personally I think “The fool on the hill” is awful. “Good Morning Good Morning” would better off in the trash. And other than “Little Darling” and maybe “Savoy Truffle” I think George just never made it into the Lennon-McCsrtney lesgue.

    Love “Maxwell” to name one trashed here. And I take offence at the condescension toward several other songs. Respect!
    “Sixty Four” may not be very “Beatle-ish” but it is an amazing achievement for anybody, let alone a fourteen year old!

    • Liz B, George never wrote a song called “Little Darling” – what song did you mean to say? (Little Darlin’ was a song by The Diamonds written by Maurice Williams)

      • Little Darlin’ came from Hear Comes the Son.

        • NJ Riley

          Richard Nino 🙄 It’s “Here Comes The Sun!” And Liz B, the fact that George wrote While My Guitar Gently Weeps, Something and Here Comes The Sun, I believe George DID make it into the Lennon/McCartney league! As a solo artist, my favorite song of his is What Is Life.

  24. The worst song Paul ever wrote imho was Your Mother Should Know. Boring, trite and repetitive. Definitely should have been on this list.

    Some of the songs here are quite good. I especially like When I’m Sixty-Four which I think fits in well with the overall Sergeant Pepper concept. Though not the best of Paul’s songs, it was a shock to see it here.

  25. Jens Kaiser

    Also der schlechteste Beatles-Song [man möge mich dafür schlagen] ist für mich “She loves you”; immer wieder dieses penetrante “Yeah, yeah, yeah…”
    Eigentlich ja DAS Markenzeichen der Beatles, zumindest in ihren Anfangsjahren. Es klingt wie eine gegrölte Fußballstadionhymne, gesungen von pubertären, leicht betrunkenen Jungs…
    Dass ich da nicht so ganz danebenliege:
    John Lennon sagte in den 1970er Jahren über den Song: “Wenn ich das Lied zufällig im Radio höre, stelle ich es sofort ab!”

    • Wenn du singen und/oder spielen kannst, versuche, „She Loves You“ in etwa 2/3 des Originaltempos zu spielen. Vielleicht entdecken Sie ein wehmütiges und mitfühlendes Liebeslied.
      Bitte verzeihen Sie mein grausames Deutsch.

  26. Robert Walker

    Clearly, this is Leadbeater’s worst column.

  27. Hell, don’t each one of us have our own share of crappy days? ;]

  28. Honestly. It feels as if the author simply pulled some random songs out of a hat for an eighth grade English assignment. Hold me tight is not good. Maxwell’s silver hammer is a chore to get through, the rest all classics and will withstand the scrutiny. They will be around far longer than the article that pretends to disparage them.

  29. Mother Nature’s Son?! Really?

  30. As a rule, I think you really have to work at it to label a Beatles song as “bad.”

    I agree whole-heartedly that Paul’s novelty songs can be extremely irritating (e.g., Maxwell’s, O-Bla-Di, etc.).

    But setting those aside, what is often ignored is that every single song doesn’t have to be a home run. There is a place for simple pop songs with decent melodies that are not necessarily game-changers but work fine as album cuts. I’m amazed, for example, at the scorn that is often heaped upon Tell Me Why, When I Get Home, Wait, and, yes, Tell Me What You See. Some people just try too hard.

    However, I will name one standard (i.e., non-novelty) Beatles song that grates on me: “You Won’t See Me.” To me, it has an annoyingly sing-song melody and features the worst aspects of Paul’s “Gee, aren’t I cute and charming?” persona. And those damn “la-la-la”s seem to go on forever. (Indeed, up until the time of Strawberry Fields Forever and the Pepper album, You Won’t See Me was the longest song in the Beatles catalog!)

    I realize this is a minority opinion, but it’s mine.

    • NJ Riley

      Mike, Paul wrote several “derogatory” songs directed at his girlfriend Jane Asher, and You Won’t See Me was one of them. Others are What You’re Doing, I’m Looking Through You and possibly For No One.
      I respect your opinion, but I actually like You Won’t See Me. *ducks rotten tomatoes* 😂

  31. Nobody mentioned yellow submarine easily there worst song

  32. I like almost every Beatles song, except “it’s all too much” and “it’s only a northern song”. I think those are the worst!

  33. Only one song that I don’t like is Yellow Submarine but 99% of their records are good.

  34. William Masi

    I thought Hold Me Tight was a great song.

  35. Like many here I think these are all great songs. While my opinion may be unpopular, I like “Maxwell’s Silver Hammer”. Song and making of the song should not be mixed. And… it was one of the first songs ever with a synthesiser on it; music history. “When I am Sixty Four” comes for me straight after “A Day in the Life”.

  36. William Arbery

    Every band’s have their best and worst songs but Paul & John still no 1

    Some songs like octopus garden are their to attract future generations. Beatles were brilliant

  37. I guess it’s a case of how different we humans can be from each other…
    “Mother Nature’s Son” for me is one of the most beautiful songs ever written-the melody, Pauls smooth voice-brings me to tears every time. The guitar nuances, the brass section, percussion-
    I feel sorry for your missing out on the ‘bit of heaven’ I experience. I’m sure you could care less about my opinion, as I could care less about yours. To each his own.

  38. LearnGuitare

    I find myself laughing…saying to myself, “Awe c’mon! That’s a great song!” Then I remembered George Carlin saying by process of elimination, somewhere out there is the world’s worst doctor. The scary thing about that? Someone has an appointment to see him tomorrow!


  39. Nothing like a music “critic” to seriously get it wrong. I suppose “Für Elise” isn’t much compared to the 9th Symphony, but who gives a damn?

  40. “Oh Darling!” is a great song — good screaming by Paul, which is much preferable to the sappy numbers. “You Won’t See Me” should have made the list. It’s boring and it always grated on me that John needed to clear his throat during the “la la la’s” near the end. For those who disparage Ob-La-Di and Maxwell, don’t you think “She’s Leaving Home” is far worse? The sugary violins and sappy lyrics make me wince.

  41. Henry Smith

    I’m endlessly fascinated by how artistic tastes and reactions can differ amongst us. I’ll bet Adam has a great ear and a deep and sophisticated appreciation of music generally, pop music specifically, and The Beatles centrally. I found his list interesting. I hope my skillset approaches a similar level of aural keenness, and I think Maxwell’s Silver Hammer, Mother Nature’s Son, and even Rocky Raccoon and Ob-La-Di Ob-La-Da, are works of towering genius (for lots of reasons, including the contexts in which they appear, the unexpected comedic touches, the typical unique musical flourishes, etc.). I’ll give it to you that Hold Me Tight and Tell Me What You See aren’t McCartney-quality, but even those work for me when listened to in their album settings, and I certainly couldn’t compose them!

  42. MidwestCornbilly

    Every song can’t possibly be gold and McCartney has certainly produced his fair share of throwaway tunes. Almost every album, by every band/artist, has at least one such song, the one you pick might be different from mine. It’s a rare album indeed that can crowned as ‘the perfect album’ and even our separate opinions of those records would be vastly different.

  43. Mark Pierce

    Reads like there is just a type of song you don’t like. As John called them granny songs. There is only one or two songs I agree with, such as the first two. After that, love all of them. And whomever said the White Album is crap – wow. I think it’s their best.

  44. What some call bad, others call good. Or, take a sad song and make it better. Paul was prolific and wrote songs in every imaginable genre. To knock Ob-la-di ob-la-da is to diss his ability to create a phenomenal melody and a catchy set of words. I’ve taught 2 generations of my family about the Beatles with that song. Yeah, some were clunkers, but not this one or Rocky.

    What someone likes is a personal preference, not to be told by others.

  45. I’m rather surprised; not only do I not mind the songs selected, but I still like (after a lifetime of listening) all of them still, even ‘Hold Me Tight’. You want a skippable early song? How about ‘I’ll Cry Instead’?

  46. Craig Sessions

    For my taste John’s songs have by far and away always been my favorites. I enjoy John’s singing much more as well. That being said, I think the majority of people in this world are middle of the road bubble gummy pop song silly love song ish personalities and will choose Paul over John’s songs. So be it. I’m very fine with that. Oh Darling btw, a fine song if you get down in the weeds and listen, could have and should have been sung by John. How marvelous then!

  47. C Curtin

    “Hold Me Tight” is a nice little pop number doesn’t deserve to be on the list nor does “Tell Me What You See”. You can have the rest. The song I have never been interested in is “Yesterday”. Never liked it…I hear the opening word and switch the channel. That’s MY opinion.

    • Peter Denmark

      Same here. I expect it’s the over exposure that made me dislike it. The same with the George Formby songs, “The Window Cleaner”, “Chinese Blues” and “Leaning On A Lamp Post”. I used to like them but not now as whenever I play my uke, I get asked to sing those and I would rather sing one or two of the other 200+ songs (in case you are wondering what the connection is, The Beatles loved George Formby).

  48. Looking at the thread, obvious you got most right but mother nature’s son wrong. Personally I detest ‘birthday’ and ‘helter skelter’, neither of which began with a melody, but instead are more ‘smart ass’ type manufactured songs.

  49. Chris Turano

    Horribly misinformed article. Obladi Oblada is an attempt at Ska, not Skiffle. If you wanna talk worst Macca songs, you have to include Your Mother Should Know, Hello Goodbye, Wild Honey Pie, and Honey Pie, NOT Mother Nature’s Son, Tell Me What You See and When I’m 64.

  50. Henry Smith

    … and continuing our theme of the subjectivity of artistic taste, I adore Your Mother Should know, and love Hello Goodbye.

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