It was a Paul kind of day today. After the final mixes of “Your Mother Should Know” were completed, The Beatles set to work on a new McCartney composition, at this point entitled “Hello Hello.” The second “Hello” would later be changed to “Goodbye” and the lyrics would be emended to include the word “aloha,” which of course means both “hello” and “goodbye.” Clever, right?

Well, it’s a fine line, as David St. Hubbins so perceptively pointed out, between clever and stupid. And “Hello Goodbye” walks that line. It is willfully simplistic, containing only 21 different words; of these, only “hello” and “goodbye” themselves are more than one syllable. The most-repeated words are “say” (40 occurrences), “hello” (39), “I” (32), “goodbye” (23), “you” (20), and “why” (16). Toward the end it gives up on actual words altogether, except for “aloha,” which I guess technically counts as a third multisyllable word.

The overall effect is either a) joyful and uplifting or b) brain-dead and infuriating. Or both. If I am in a good mood I will probably be glad when this song comes on the radio; I may tap my foot or even sing along. If I am in a bad mood I will snarl, “What a load of bollocks.” What’s your take?



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