Saturday, May 29, 2010

Trying To Make A Dove Tail Joint

The next song on the LP/CD "The Beatles" white album is another Lennon/McCartney original written mainly by John entitled "Glass Onion". This song included references to other - mainly McCartney written - titled that had been previously recorded by the Beatles including "Strawberry Fields Forever" "Lady Madonna" "Fixing a Hole" "I Am the Walrus" and "A Fool On The Hill". The lyrics were directed at Beatles fan who would dissect every word for supposed "meaning" or "clues". One of the lines in the songs states that the walrus was Paul. This lyric line was dedicated to Paul by John.

"Glass Onion" was first recorded as a basic track on Wednesday September 11 1968 at EMI studio two. The instrumentation included the drums and bass with acoustic and electric guitar. There were 34 takes and take 33 was chosen as the commercial version.

The next day on September 12 1968 at EMI studio two, John Lennon added his lead vocals and a tambourine was also overdubbed - all onto the basic take 33.

The next day on September 13 1968 and again from EMI studio two piano and an additional drum track were both overdubbed onto take 33.

On September 16 1968 at EMI studio two, an idea was created wereby a recorder would be added to the song where the mention in the lyrics of "The Fool On the Hill" as a sort of parody. The recorder was overdubbed at this session and double tracked.

On September 16 1968 from the control room of EMI studio two, it was decided to add some sound effects to "Glass Onion". These sound effects included a telephone ringing, a soccer announcer broadcasting "It's A Goal!" with a crowd cheering and finally a window being smashed. These sound effects happen mainly at the end of the song but some were sprinkled throughout the song. There were two mono mixes using the sound effects version but in the end none of them were used for the upcoming LP. One of the mono mixes can be heard on the Apple 3-LP/2-CD "Anthology 3".

On October 10 1968 in EMI studio two, the sound effects were scrapped and eight string players were added at the end. This overdub was done on this date. Also completed on this date was the stereo mix in two attempts as well as the mono mix done in two attempts as well. Both of these mixes appeared on the respective LPs/CDs.

"Glass Onion" can be found on the Apple 2-LP/2-CD "The Beatles" white album.

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