Rocky Raccoon – James Armata

from The White Album pt 1 by The Beatles Complete On Ukulele



“Rocky Raccoon is quirky, very me. I like talking blues so I started off like that, then I did my tongue-in-cheek parody of a western and threw in some amusing lines. I just tried to keep it amusing, really; it’s me writing a play, a little one-act play giving them most of the dialogue. Rocky Raccoon is the main character, then there’s the girl whose real name was Magill, who called herself Lil, but she was known as Nancy.

There are some names I use to amuse, Vera, Chuck and Dave or Nancy and Lil, and there are some I mean to be serious, like Eleanor Rigby, which are a little harder because they have to not be joke names. In this case Rocky Raccoon is some bloke in a raccoon hat, like Davy Crockett. The bit I liked about it was him finding Gideon’s Bible and thinking, Some guy called Gideon must have left it for the next guy. I like the idea of Gideon being a character. You get the meaning and at the same time get in a poke at it. All in good fun. And then of course the doctor is drunk.”

Paul McCartney


How to be precious without being precious?

What’s the point of strict stylist, pop, rock, jazz, verse chorus, verse chorus end song, how many hooks, if it doesn’t enable the singer to sing the song? It’s not the song, it’s how you sing the song.

Your talents, your song writing and most importantly your voice must not be limited, stuffed, crammed and ill-fitted into traditional rock-pop structures. Some do it fantastically, others succumb to it.


from The White Album pt 1, released August 14, 2012
Ukulele version #163: January 12 2012

James Armata: Vocals and guitar
David Barratt Ukulele

Produced by David Barratt at The Abattoir of Good Taste


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The Beatles Complete On Ukulele New York, New York

Every Tuesday from January 20, 2009 until July 31, 2012 The Beatles Complete On Ukulele released a new recording of a Beatles song* featuring a ukulele sung by a different artist.

These albums are a compilation of those recordings.

*we consider a Beatles song to be one of the 185 original compositions released by The Beatles between 1962 and 1970.
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