Yesterday (Dec. 8) was the 32nd anniversary of the assassination of John Lennon, so this week I thought it would be appropriate to feature one of his most iconic and tender songs.
"In My Life" was featured on Rubber Soul, the 1966 album that hinted to the world that the Beatles were about to depart once and for all from being a pop band of cuddly moptops writing love songs to screaming girls. Instead, they would focus on writing songs that broke through the boundaries of popular music and explore new frontiers musically and lyrically.
"In My Life" was written by Lennon (though it is, as all Beatles songs, credited to Lennon/McCartney). It is on the surface a love song, but it has depth and intensity that typical love songs do not. He recalls other loves, "some are dead and some are living," with a reflection and maturity we hadn't seen before in Beatle songs. It's as if he's singing, not to a girl, but to someone or something he has yet to find, something that will live at the center of his life.
Musically, it has a melodic approach that is also more mature and innovative than a standard pop song of the day. It is evocative and spare, and the piano solo in the middle, by producer George Martin, adds an interesting Baroque quality that is somehow just right.
This song is for me a prayer, a plea and a comfort. I hope it brings you at least a smile.