The BEATLES – ” Penny Lane/ Strawberry Fields Forever ” Record Store Day Release 2017

Posted: April 20, 2017 in MUSIC
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Marking the 50th anniversary of one of the greatest singles by the Beatles and indeed by anyone of all time “Penny Lane/ Strawberry Fields Forever” is coming out on Record Store Day 2017.

The song was written by John Lennon  and credited to the Lennon-McCartney songwriting partnership. It was inspired by Lennon’s memories of playing in the garden of Strawberry Field a salvation Army children’s home near where he grew up in Liverpool.

The song was the first track recorded during the sessions for the BeatlesSgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band album and was intended for inclusion on the album. Instead, with the group under record-company pressure to release a single, it was issued in February 1967 as a double A side with the song  “Penny Lane” . The combination reached number two in the UK singles chart .

Lennon considered the song his greatest accomplishment.  The track incorporates reverse-recorded instrumentation and tape loops, and was created from the editing together of two separate versions of the song – each one entirely different in tempo, mood and key. The song was later included on the US released album “Magical Mystery Tour”  (although not on the British double EP package of the same name).

“Strawberry Fields Forever” is one of the defining works of the psychedelic rock genre . The Beatles made a promotional film clip for the song that is similarly recognised for its influence in the medium of music video.

At the time of its release most people did not know the backstory, hearing the songs as psychedelic messages from the all mysterious Beatles, when in fact, most Beatle songs were deeply rooted in reality and real places, though for those of us traveling the mystic highway of fascination, we were all more than willing to listen to the rumors, even making up some of our own, and dive headlong down the rabbit hole. Of course all these years later, and with countless books having been written, exploring every nuance of the of all things Beatle, I so wish that I could return to those cherished fabricated underground memories from so long ago.

Both of the songs were artistically different, lush, layered, hypnotic, yet with their dream laden musical construction and surreal lyrics, this back to back adventure made for a contextually complete image, one that made it impossible for one song to exist without the other. I remember hearing both songs on Top Of the Pops and thinking these songs were singular moments in time, they were defining points on the map of life, the numbers became even more alive, more magical, filled with divine purpose and provenance, Both “Strawberry Fields and “Penny Lane” were musical scripts being played out.

With both songs being recorded in late 1966, and released as a single due to pressure from their record company, neither of these tracks would find their way onto Sgt. Pepper, though it was Lennon’s intention that “Strawberry Fields” should be the opening track for Sgt. Pepper’s, where if one considers the sublime nature of these two numbers, they would have completely redefined that album as we know it, without a doubt making it much stronger and influential.

Penny Lane is where Lennon used to live before moving in with his Aunt Mimi. As such, Strawberry Fields was also a factual place, a Salvation Army home in Liverpool where John Lennon used to go. He had fond memories of the place that inspired this. In 1984, Lennon’s widow Yoko Ono donated $375,000 to the home. One of the buildings has been named Lennon Hall.

John’s aunt Mimi did not like John going to Strawberry Fields, as it was basically an orphanage and she thought they would lead John astray. John liked going there because having lost his father and later his mother he felt a kinship to the lads. When John and his aunt would argue about his going he would often reply, “What are they going to do, hang me?” Thus the line “Nothing to get hung about.” In America, to be “hung up” is to worry about something, so many US listeners thought the line meant that it was nothing to get “hung up about.”

A distorted voice at the end sounds like “I buried Paul,” which fueled rumors that Paul McCartney was dead. The voice is actually Lennon saying, “Cranberry sauce.”

It turns out Strawberry Fields is not forever. In 2005, Britain’s Salvation Army closed the Strawberry Field children’s home in Liverpool, stating that it’s preferable for children to be raised in a foster or small group home instead of a large orphanage. The home opened in 1936.Image may contain: text

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Comments
  1. Erick King says:

    Those songs inclusion would’ve make the album stronger but not any more influential. It was and still is the most influential album of all time anyway

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