Saturday, November 21, 2015

Snippets of "Being For The Benefit of Mr. Kite!"

Bookends of a rehearsal session as well as attempts as some studio takes are available to the listening public on commercial releases over the years for "Being For The Benefit of Mr. Kite!" which is a mainly John song written in January/February of 1967 inspired by a circus poster advertising the Pablo Fanques Fair and Circus show.
Both takes one and two from February 17 1967 in EMI Studio 2 in London consists of the Beatles preparing the backing takes for "Kite" with George Martin playing the harmonium, John Lennon singing the main vocal, Paul on bass, George on tambourine and Ringo on his usual drums. Both takes are aborted after a few seconds with the first take being counted in by Paul and the band realizing after a bar or two that the song is being played too slow! There is a bit of an adjustment made for the count in and another attempt is realized before a break down of the song occurs. All of this can be heard in the first minute of the track on the 3-LP/2-CD Apple release "Anthology 2". It would eventually require seven takes to perfect the backing which will be discussed in a later post.
The Beatles also tended to record the rehearsals of their takes and sometimes the proper take would erase the previous rehearsals but in this case a couple of snippets from the rehearsals can be heard. One example is on the Anthology DVD set whereby there is a comment by John Lennon followed by the announcement of a rehearsal take 8 by the engineer Geoff Emerick.
Another snippet of the rehearsals lasting only two seconds has been released commercially as part of Paul McCartney's 2000 release "Liverpool Sound Collage" which has John Lennon stating "Well, we'll have the Masked Alberts on by then". This quote also originates from the original rehearsal sessions and is repeated on the track "Plastic Beetle".

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