From: email@example.com (Meyer)
Subject: 4th time around
Date: Mon, 29 Apr 1996 12:55:22 -0500
Is this song not a parody of the Beatles'"Norwegian Wood"? I believe that John Lennon got really paranoid about Dylan mocking him, through this song.
* * *VERY INTRESTING.... I never thought of that. I am going to listen to both songs right now. But the line in the song (4th time around) about "the picture of you in your wheel chair wheelchair,etc..." has always been lost on me.
Yeah, 4th Time Around was inspired by Norwegian Wood. I wouldn't say it was a *parody*. Lennon did get pretty paranoid for a start but then he obviously realized that 4th Time Around was Dylans version of his own song, both musically and lyrically. The Lennon/Dylan relationship is a pretty strange one, but I'll return on that later in this newsgroup...
Lars Lennon Alias Brundin
A couple weeks ago somebody posted here (sorry I don't know who) that this was Dylan's attempt to mimick the Beatles' Norweigan Wood. I never noticed till the post but it does sound awfuly like it in both the musical arrangement and the lyrics.
* * *aloha!
i remember the post of the past, and that the beatles did a mimickry of dylan with their song "rocky racoon." i don't recall which dylan song they used as a basis for *rocky*. anybody remember?
* * *Apparently, the Beatles replied to Dylan by creating "Rocky Racoon," a spoof of the songs on the album "John Wesley Harding."
* * *The tune of "4th Time Around" is based on John Lennon's "Norwegian Wood". This latter is a love song that Lennon said he wrote to Yoko while still married to first wife Cynthia, and he was attempting to be obscure enough to let his new love know it was about her without letting the old love catch on. Lennon was under a bit of a Dylan spell at the time (re: Hide Your Love Away) and so used a lot of very Dylanish language in the song.
I've always assumed that "4th Time Around" is a playful parody of "Norwegian Wood", telling a story in as convoluted a way as possible, with lots of pregnant pauses and hanging sentences... rather like a Harold Pinter play viewed under the influence of a couple of joints.
By the way, the pun that the song ends with is sometimes lost on Americans since the British variant of "crotch" is "crutch." That must be something else he "learned over in England."
On Tue, 30 Apr 1996, Matthew Zuckerman wrote: > The tune of "4th Time Around" is based on John Lennon's "Norwegian Wood". > This latter is a love song that Lennon said he wrote to Yoko while still > married to first wife Cynthia, and he was attempting to be obscure enough > to let his new love know it was about her without letting the old love > catch on. Lennon was under a bit of a Dylan spell at the time (re: Hide > Your Love Away) and so used a lot of very Dylanish language in the song.I don't think (but I could be wrong) that Lennon's song "Norwegian Wood" was written for Yoko--it appears on Rubber Soul, which was released in 1965. Lennon did not marry Yoko until 1969, and I don't think he met her until 1968 around the time of the White Album sessions. I'll have to check this out. It is generally told that this song was the Beatles' response to Dylan's songwriting abilities and the topics in his songs--the Beatles had until that point only written simple love songs, and that was their first attempt at telling a story in a song.
If anyone knows this not to be the case, speak up!
* * *The last part of this (that this was L&M's first attempt to tell a story in a song) I'm not sure about, and at best it's an oversimplification. (Another song on Rubber Soul, "Drive My Car," tells the same kind of sardonic tale, but of course could have been written after "Norwegian Wood" -- but then what about "I'm a Loser" and "Help!"?)
Anyway, though, otherwise both people's comments are basically right. Yes, John Lennon went through a major Dylan phase around that time; and no, he hadn't met Yoko yet (that happened in 1966, I believe). So the first writer's general point is right, and the second writer's correction is right too.
Lennon described this song (paraphrased) as "trying to write a song about an affair without Cynthia knowing" -- again, pretty much what the first note said, leaving out Yoko.
For his part, Dylan (in a Rolling Stone interview in 1969, I think) did acknowledge that "4th Time Around" was his response to "Norwegian Wood."
-- Bob G.
Yes, you're quite right. Eh...partly anyway. Norwegian Wood cannot have been written about Yoko Ono. But John and Yoko first met in 1966, not in 1968, even though they didn't get together until 1968. Norwegian Wood must have been written about some other girl...
* * *John met Yoko in 1966, and i think Norwegian Wood is about a random affair. I read that Bob wrote "4th Time Around" as a parody of it. For another Lennon-Dylan song similarity, check out "Masters Of War" and "Working Class Hero". I think that John based "Working class Hero" On MOW, but i may be wrong.
Well, "Fourth Time Around" is nothing less than the Dylanized version of
Lennon-McCartney's "Norwegian Wood" (from -Rubber Soul-). It makes sense
if you think about it. Listen to them both and I think you'll hear it too.
The press folks were always asking Dylan how he would -top- the latest Beatles album. Of course, he was never so interested in this "competition," but he did write two Beatles take-offs to my knowledge, the other of which is "I Wanna Be Your Lover" which is a pretty silly song, the only saving grace of which is the inspired refrain: "I don't wanna be HERS, I wanna be YERS!"
>> The tune of "4th Time Around" is based on John Lennon's "Norwegian Wood". >> This latter is a love song that Lennon said he wrote to Yoko while still >> married to first wife Cynthia, and he was attempting to be obscure enough >> to let his new love know it was about her without letting the old love >> catch on. Lennon was under a bit of a Dylan spell at the time (re: Hide >> Your Love Away) and so used a lot of very Dylanish language in the song. >I don't think (but I could be wrong) that Lennon's song "Norwegian Wood" >was written for Yoko--it appears on Rubber Soul, which was released in >1965. Lennon did not marry Yoko until 1969, and I don't think he met >her until 1968 around the time of the White Album sessions. I'll have >to check this out.My original posting was from memory (and a sieve-like one at that) and I don't have any way of checking the Lennon interview, though it was probably either the Rolling Stone "Lennon Remembers" one or the Playboy one done just before his death. If the woman wasn't Yoko, then maybe he was talking about some other lady friend.
Lennon talks about Norwegian Wood in "Lennon Remembers":
"Was trying to write about an affair without letting me wife know I was writing about an affair, so it was very goobledegook. I was sort of writing from my experiences, girls' flats, things like that..."
I'm pretty sure that I've seen this somewhere else too, where Lennon also talks about his reaction when he first heard 4th Time Around. Anyone?
BoB Meyer posted: >I was wondering what people's interpretations were of "4th Time Around." >The song has baffled me for 20 years.......looking forward to some great >postings..4th Time Around - one of Bob's murder ballads.