Revisit Nick Cave’s dreamy cover of The Beatles hit song ‘Let It Be’
We’re delving back into Far Out Magazine’s ‘From The Vault’ section to bring you a moment cooked up inside your rock and roll dreams as Nick Cave puts his spin on a Beatles classic.
‘Let It Be’, the Paul McCartney-written song released in March 1970, spearheaded The Beatles’ twelfth and final studio album of the same name. The record’s lead track now has the acclaim of being the final single before McCartney announced his departure from the band.
Famously, McCartney once claimed that the idea of the song came to him in a dream about his mother at a time when The Beatles were going through intense recording sessions for The White Album in 1968. McCartney was also quick to point out that the “Mother Mary” lyric was not a biblical reference and, instead, explained that his late mother was the inspiration.
McCartney, recalling the track, said: “It was great to visit with her again. I felt very blessed to have that dream. So that got me writing ‘Let It Be’.” Detailing further in a reflection of the song, The Beatles bass player said in the dream his mother had told him: “It will be all right, just let it be.”
Such is the legacy of the track, ‘Let It Be’ has been covered by countless musicians following its release some 39 years ago. Notable greats such as Nina Simone and Joan Baez have all tried to add their own style with a rendition of the song but today we’re focusing a certain Australian prince going by the name of Nick Cave.
In 2001 Cave teamed up with filmmaker Jessie Nelson and performed a couple of tracks for the soundtrack of his drama film I Am Sam. The film, which starred Sean Penn as a father with an intellectual disability, also included the likes of Dakota Fanning and Michelle Pfeiffer.
To complete the soundtrack, Nelson recruited a handful of musicians to compile 19 cover versions of Beatles songs. While the likes of Eddie Vedder, Sheryl Crow, The Vines, Stereophonics and more were involved, but it was Cave’s stripped-back version of ‘Let It Be’ that immediately stood out.
The idea was dreamt up when producers were unable to obtain the rights to the original tracks and, instead, they commissioned the artists featured on the album to record the versions released.