Saturday, June 30, 2018

Night And Day

On October 27 1969, Ringo was summoned to the recording studio to lay some vocals on what would become his first solo album. Ringo had been talking about doing a collection of older standards as far back as the January 1969 "Get Back/Let It Be" sessions and had finally come around to it by the fall of 1969.
The first song recorded for the upcoming project would the Cole Porter classic "Night And Day". The arrangement for the tune was undertaken by Chico O'Farrill.
The first thing recorded would be the instrumental section of the song with a 17 piece orchestra although it's not confirmed if this was in studio one or two of EMI Studios in London. The orchestra was conducted by and produced by George Martin.
Ringo himself would come into the studio later in the evening and lay down his vocal track probably in Studio three of EMI. The song was mixed on the same day for stereo only.
The song was commercially released on Ringo's first Apple LP/CD "Sentimental Journey". The original title for the project was "Ringo Starrdust".

Saturday, June 23, 2018

"Don't Worry/Don't Worry/ Don't Worry"

Between October 03 and October 05, work was done on the upcoming single "Cold Turkey/ "Don't Worry Kyoko (Mummy's Only Looking For Her Hand In The Snow".
The first recording was the B side with Yoko on vocals, John (Lennon) and Eric (Clapton) on guitar, Klaus Voorman on bass and Ringo on the drums. This line up jammed on a never ending riff while Yoko did her thing all over you. The whole tune was put on tape at Lansdowne Studios (A) in London, England but it was mixed at Abbey Road by Geoff Emerick.
"Cold Turkey" had it's final overdubs done on October 05 at EMI Studio 2 including new vocals and some addition guitar by John solely. Nobody else was involved in the overdubs and it was also mixed by Geoff Emerick at Abbey Road (probably at the same time as the B side).
Both tracks are commercially available: "Cold Turkey" can be heard on the "Lennon Legend" LP while "Don't Worry Kyoko (Mummy's Only Looking For Her Hand In The Snow" can be found on Yoko's 1971 Apple 2-LP "Fly". Of course, the live versions can always be heard on the Apple LP "Live Peace In Toronto 1969 - Plastic Ono Band".

Saturday, June 16, 2018

Mixing "Across The Universe" For A Charity Album

Back in February 1968, a new single was required by the Beatles before they left for India. One of the songs considered but rejected was John Lennon's "Across The Universe". In the end, John agreed to donate the song for a charity album for the World Wildlife Fund.
Fast forward to January 1969 during the "Get Back/Let It Be" session and an acetate was played to the band to remind them of the song. At this point, the song was in mono and the mix from February 08 1968 was used for the acetate. You can also hear an attempt at the song by the band from January 1969 in the "Let It Be" film.
Fast forward (again) to March 1969 and Apple is thinking of releasing an EP of songs from the film "Yellow Submarine" and including "Across The Universe" as a bonus track. Again, the song was not used.
Finally, the acetate version of "Across The Universe" was used by George Martin on October 02 1969 in order to mix the song in stereo for the UK charity album entitled "No One's Gonna Change Our World" which would be released on December 12 1969. The song was sped up a half tone and animal/bird noises were added to the very beginning and near the end. Acoustic guitar/vocal in the middle surrounded by tamboura and backing vocals on one side and more acoustic, piano, maracas, etc. on the other side of the stereo spectrum.
You can find this version of the song on the UK only charity album as well as the UK version of "Rarities" and the US version of "Rarities" where it made it's first appearance (all of the above on vinyl). You can hear this version on "Past Masters Volume One and Two" (LP) and "Past masters Volume Two" (CD). A fold down mono version can be heard on the "Beatles in Mono" disc.

Sunday, June 3, 2018

"Cold Turkey" recording sessions.

"Cold Turkey" was first recorded on September 25 1969 at EMI Studio Three in London. After spending most of the day mixing for the "Live Peace In Toronto" project, he was joined by Eric Clapton on guitar, Ringo on drums and Klaus Voorman on the bass guitar. 26 takes were produced for the basic tracks and were eventually deemed unsatisfactory.
Three days later on September 28 1969, the same line up of musicians attempted another recording at a different studio, this time Trident Studios. On September 29 1969, mixing of the song took place back at EMI Studios. Overdubbing (not sure which instrument and/or vocal) as well as another mix took place almost a week later in Studio Two of EMI.
The September 29 1969 mix was available on an acetate and this is the version that ended up on the bootleg "The Lost Lennon Tapes Volume Seven" LP. This mix has a different vocal and sounds a bit raw with a lack of overdubs. The official commercial release was edited on to the end of the song. The commercial version was mixed at the end of October and issued in stereo only.