Directed by Mafalda Millies. From Red Trees and White Trashes, out now on 300 Entertainment.
Jesse Allen Wells calls his band Welles. He used to call himself Jeh Sea. So spelling is a loose concept for him. As is originality.
Wells told Billboard that, “I had this Beatles ditty in my head from The White Album, ‘Cry Baby Cry,’ that’s been stuck in my head all these years. So I just wrote (‘Hold Me Like I’m Leaving’) from that, added a melody, chorus and pre-chorus and wrote the song.”
The song that was stuck in his head was clearly Paul McCartney’s hidden track “Can You Take Me Back,” tagged on to the end of John Lennon’s “Cry Baby Cry.” And Wells totally re-purposes its melody for his verses. Nevertheless, he retains 100% of the songwriting credit. Talent borrows, genius steals, right?
Despite the outright theft, or maybe because of it, this is a jam.
“I’m not trying to bring rock and roll back or anything like that. This is just how I talk. This is my musical language, and if you want to have a conversation with me you’re gonna have to listen to some rock and roll, I reckon.”
Can you dig it?
Original version from The Beatles (Capitol, 1968).