Some Other Guy

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"Some Other Guy"
Single by Richie Barrett
B-side "Tricky Dicky"
Released 1962
Format 7"
Genre Rhythm and blues
Label Atlantic 2142 (USA)
Writer(s) Jerry Leiber, Mike Stoller and Richard Barrett
Richie Barrett singles chronology
"Dream On"
(1960)
"Some Other Guy"
(1962)
"Summer's Love"
(1963)

"Some Other Guy" is a rhythm and blues song, written by Jerry Leiber, Mike Stoller and Richie Barrett.[1] First released as a single in 1962 by Barrett himself,[2] it featured an electric piano, then an unusual sound in pop music. Covered shortly afterwards by Liverpool's the Big Three, the song was a standard in the Merseybeat scene.

The Beatles[edit]

"Some Other Guy"
Song by The Beatles from the album Live at the BBC
Released 30 November 1994
Recorded 19 June 1963
Genre Rock and roll
Length 2:01
Label Apple Records
Writer(s) Jerry Leiber, Mike Stoller and Richard Barrett
Producer(s) Ron Belchier (Post-Production by George Martin)

The song was part of the Beatles' early repertoire, and film footage of The Beatles performing it live is the only known film with synchronized sound showing the group at the Cavern Club. The grainy footage features John Lennon and Paul McCartney singing the song's melody in 1962. It is also the first film of Ringo Starr as the Beatles drummer, Pete Best having been sacked the week before. At the end of the song, someone in the audience can be heard shouting "We want Pete!" after which Lennon simply says "Yes." This audio recording was released on the album Live at the BBC in 1994.

McCartney stated: "It is a great song...It really got us started because that's one of the earliest bits of film of The Beatles. It was the song we sang when Granada Television came to the Cavern. It was also a bit of a muso song..."[3] The Beatles play it in the key of D, with a slow A-C-D intro and second interval I-♭VII-I on every tonic (and the equivalent for IV and V). The "muso song" reference may relate to it being early example of a rock & roll song topped and tailed by a ♭VII-I cadence.[4]

Pete Best released a cover on his 1965 album, "Best of The Beatles".[5] Unsurprisingly, Best's version and The Beatles's version sound similar.

Misheard lyrics[edit]

Neither Richie Barrett's original nor The Big Three's cover have crystal clear lyrics, and this has led to mishearings. The Beatles sang misheard words that were not Richie's original lyrics, and regrettably, even though the Fab Four's words make little or no sense, their amended lyrics have stuck and have been used in subsequent covers. Barrett's original lyrics chime in with the bitter anger and sadness of a guy who has lost his girlfriend, whereas the incorrect lyrics miss the point altogether. The affected lines are as follows:

Verse 1, line 3: Some other guy, now, I just don't want to hold my hand should be Some other guy, now, has just thrown water on my fire; ("fire" rhymes with "desire").

Verse 2, line 1: Some other guy, now, is sippin' up the honey like a yellow dog should be Some other guy, is tippin' up behind me like a yellow dog; (as in "tip-toeing").

Verse 2, line 2: Some other guy, now, has taken my love just like I'm gone should be Some other guy, has taken our love just like a hog; ("hog" rhymes with "dog").

Verse 3, line 2: Some other guy, now, is making my past seem oh so bad should be Some other guy now, is breaking the padlock off my pad.

In a short documentary film with a John Lennon voiceover, (in which Lennon compares the song's intro to that of his own "Instant Karma!"), all three co-writers (Leiber, Stoller and Barrett) of "Some Other Guy" discuss the song.[6] Barrett confirms his original lyrics, saying, "I put the part to it that made the story ... stealing my girl ... stepping away ... pouring water on my fire ... taking her love ... just like a hog ... taking her love just like a dog, like a yellow dog. A situation with a guy in Harlem going through trials and tribulations with his girlfriend".

In the three-part TV series Cilla featuring Sheridan Smith playing Cilla Black, Smith sings the song as "Some Other Girl", but otherwise her lyrics are the Barrett originals (save for "Some other girl, now, has just thrown water on my hand"). Smith also starts singing the line "Some other girl, now, is sipping up the honey like a yellow dog", but the scene is cut before the line (perhaps inappropriate for a chanteuse!) is completed. She sings the line, "is breaking the padlock off my pad" three times.

Other recorded versions[edit]

The song was popular in Liverpool's Merseybeat scene.[2] The song was covered by numerous artistes, as follows:

The compilation CD John Lennon's Jukebox included "Some Other Guy", attributed to The Big Three. However, it is not the same as The Big Three's original single; rather, having an electric piano, it appears to be a mid-1970s reworking by The Big Three, very much closer to the style of Richie Barrett original.,

Parodies[edit]

The Rutles' song "Goose-Step Mama" is based on the Beatles' Cavern Club performance of this song.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "ASCAP ACE Database". American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP). Retrieved 22 November 2010. 
  2. ^ a b Harry, Bill (2000). The Beatles Encyclopedia: Revised and Updated. London: Virgin Publishing. pp. 1011–1012. ISBN 0-7535-0481-2. 
  3. ^ Paul McCartney cited in Dominic Pedler. The Songwriting Secrets of The Beatles. Music Sales Limited. Omnibus Press. NY. 2003. p232
  4. ^ Dominic Pedler. The Songwriting Secrets of The Beatles. Music Sales Limited. Omnibus Press. NY. 2003. p233
  5. ^ Moore, Charles E (13 August 2012). "Pete Best Discography". pete best discography. Retrieved 13 August 2012. 
  6. ^ "YouTube". YouTube. Retrieved 2016-09-26. 
  7. ^ "Complete A-Z Song List". Rickresource.com. Retrieved 2014-08-20. 
  8. ^ Deming, Mark. B-Sides the Beatles at AllMusic. Retrieved 27 December 2016.