Nov. 21, 2019

The Beatles: Strawberry Fields Forever

The Beatles: Strawberry Fields Forever

This is the story behind The Beatles' fantastic song, "Strawberry Fields Forever." Learn why John Lennon said the song was, "psychoanalysis set to music."

iTunes Playlist http://bit.ly/ep1-song-itunes
Spotify Playlist http://bit.ly/ep1-song-spotify

Show Notes:

Transcript

Ryan Gregg  
Welcome to the Songs of note Podcast, where we talk

about the songs we love, and the stories behind them. I'm your host,  Ryan Gregg. Thank you so much for checking out the songs for note podcast. This is a podcast that I'm starting as a music fan. I'm a guy who loves songs who love songwriting. And I especially love the stories behind songs in what we're going to be focusing on for this podcast is going to be talking about the stories behind some songs that you know, and hopefully some songs that you don't. And so the kind of the format for each episode is, it'll be centered around at one song, and then I'll have an interview with someone. And I'll also give some information about the song. And so this is the first episode which is on the best band of all time, The Beatles, right, right. Yes, yes, yes. I love that.

You may not love the Beatles. And that's all right. So what my hope is with this podcast, to hit, not just one specific type of music. So I mean, I love music, from the Beatles, to Nirvana to bone of air, Elliott Smith, Billie Holiday, there's a wide gamut of fantastic music that we have at our fingertips, it's never been easier to access. And for me, the thing that that the most excites me the thing that you know, putting this podcast together, if I had to hone in on what's the thing that I like about it? What's what am i hoping to communicate to you listening while you're driving, while you're working out why you're listening, wherever you are. The stories behind the songs I think, are what move me when I know what a band was going through when a song was being written or recorded. When I know what a singer was dealing with in his life, while he was singing a certain lyric, to me that that like opens up a room of emotional connection. And it widens the range of of how I relate to a song to how I love a song. It makes me love him more deeply. There's been some some albums, some songs where once I found out the story behind it, it made me love it even even more. And so that's my favorite thing is talking about the stories and talking about, you know, why do we like a song and what makes it unique. And so, today's episode is on Strawberry Fields Forever. I could talk about the song for a long time, I'm going to make a brief rundown of kind of hitting the high points of what makes this song unique. Then we're gonna head over to an interview with my friend Bill Victor, who posted a Beatles question that had me in knots for a couple days. So I won't tell you what it is. But we'll get to that interview here just a couple minutes. So the song that we're talking about today is Strawberry Fields Forever. One of my favorite Beatle songs, I hope you know it, hope you love it something that if you don't, I'm pumped that you maybe don't know it in hopefully, this is an introduction for you. But something that is really great about being able to utilize the platform of a podcast. If you click into the show notes of any episode that I'm putting out in the songs of note podcast, I'm going to include a cook clickable link to a playlist on Apple Music or on Spotify. And so you know, in these episodes, we're talking about, you know, rattling off songs you may or may not know, but what I thought would be cool as a music fan is if you're listening to it, and you don't know the songs we're talking about, where you can just go to the show notes, click the link and I'm gonna have a playlist that you can just add to your library. And after the show is done, you can listen to those songs and you know, hopefully it makes gives you a wider range of, of songs that maybe you didn't know before, or maybe you do and it reminds you about it being a good song or maybe you don't like it, I don't know. But that's kind of the hope here with those with that clickable link in the show notes. And as this is Episode One, you know the the most helpful thing is if you like this podcast, there's two things you can do number one, subscribe and that way you'll get the updates so I'm going to do an episode every week that will give you the updates on the latest episodes and two is if you could take a minute to rate this podcast or give a comment that's a huge help and really get helps the by gasket found by other people. So if you had to narrow down the the background of Strawberry Fields Forever, what's it about the story is really a story about john lennon and the loss of his mother. John's mother was named Julia, and she was reported to social services by her sister who was Mimi, and so the two of them lived in town together. His aunt Mimi didn't think that Julia was doing a good job of being a parent to him. So she actually turned her in. And John's mother Julia was known to be allowed personality, lots of fun. She taught john to play banjo, the ukulele. And she gave over custody of john to Mimi. And so the person that watched him was Mimi, but the person who he would see in town all the time was his mom, Julia, which was very weird for him. And so on July 15 1958, Julia was actually hit by an off duty police officer and killed and john was only 14 years old. JOHN, john talked about her her death throughout his life. Yoko Ono would talk about, you know, late in the 70s, the 1970s he would he would be in bed about to go to sleep, and he's still talking about his mom. So she had this huge impact on him and this lasting impact, and he never got over it. Strawberry field was, according to john the name of an old Victorian house converted for salvation, army orphans, and he was near Lenin's childhood home outside of Liverpool. JOHN used to go there with his buddies and they played in the garden, the wooden garden behind his home. So there was a garden party that was held each summer there were salvation army would play and a quote from Isaiah Mimi was there she said there was always something about the place that fascinated john. He could see it from his window and he loved going to the garden party they had each year he used to hear the Salvation Army Band, and he would pull me along saying, Hey, get Mimi, we're gonna be late. So that's young john, john lennon in his aunt Mimi reminiscing on you know, this place strawberry field fast forward in 1966. The Beatles have become the biggest band ever. They've conquered every every market their Beatlemania has swept the nation. No one's ever seen anything like it. Okay, so at this point, when they, when they play shows, the band can't even hear the notes. They're playing because of the screams of the girls in the audience. Because they, they just were obsessed with the Beatles. And they were amazing. I would have been screaming like that, too, as the Beatles man oh my gosh, I can't imagine going to a Beatles concert. But so for the band. What they said though, was, you know, it got to the point where it just felt like a farce, it felt like a we're walking out on stage and you are just screaming, we're not getting any better as musicians, you can actually hear what we're playing, because you're screaming so loud. And so they got tired of touring, they were done with it. And so by 1966 you know, the the Kennedy assassination happened the night 1963 which was right around when the Beatles got huge in the US specifically.

And so within that little period there they went from doing very, you know, straight straight ahead rock and roll to move to 1966. And they have done revolver, which is a groundbreaking album, so many cool songs on there so much. Amazing recording techniques. They brought in so many new somebody new techniques, I could go into that, but I'm I'm gonna keep going. And they they just pushed the genre of rock and roll forward tremendously with one album, okay, so that that album, revolver came out in on August 5 1966. So I used to be in a band, and we would travel and that's what I did for 10 years. And anytime that we had a new song, a new album, that was the thing, I couldn't wait to play a new song because it was the thing that we were most excited about. And so when you look at the Beatles, they've they've played together hundreds and hundreds of shows maybe 1000s. At this point, it's 1966. They go to play their final concert on August 29 1966. And they don't play a single song from the album that they released three weeks before. What that tells me is the band's recording life is completely different from their, from their concert life. These are two separate entities, they go on stage. And they're playing songs that they played years back when they would travel in play in small places. So some of the songs they played that night rock and roll music. She's a woman if I needed someone daytripper babies in black, these are great. These are great Beatle songs. But these are these are songs written by a different band than the band that just recorded revolver. So the concert was one of the shortest that they ever did, and the setlist included no songs from revolver which is astounding to me when you think of the weight of the amount of beautiful songs on revolver, so as far as the story about how john lennon really wrote the song, the man, you know, had been touring like crazy. The revolver album comes out they have their final concert end of August 1967 and the band is ready for a break. So everybody finally gets some time apart. john lennon gets off part in a movie called how I won the war, which was a dick Latin away Richard Lester anti war comedy. He goes off to Marius, Spain to do the movie. Everybody kind of goes their own ways. And so while he's there in Spain

imagine john lennon goes from being one of the most famous people in the world. He can't go anywhere without people mobbing him screaming for him. He now is on a movie set where he's really secluded. There's all this time between takes. He's has a lot of downtime, a lot of quiet time. So he ends up on a beach. And so there are some quotes from his co star. His name was Michael Crawford. And it talks about he talks about linen, just working on this song in so you imagine, you know, imagine john lennon sitting on a beach in America, Spain, one of the biggest celebrities in musicians in the world, and he finally has quiet. And so what does he do? What what topic does he return to? He's anonymous people know him. He returns to his childhood and he sings about strawberry field a place that he knew as a kid, as a child that had tremendous weight to him. His co star, Michael Crawford had a quote and he said, you know, some picture this this is, this is a guy, the only guy who happens to have a front row seat to john lennon writing one of these most one of the most famous songs ever. So here's this quote, he says because they shared like a bungalow during the recording. So just it's just two guys, you know, sharing a common living space because they're working on this project together. It just happens to be john lennon working on one of the most famous songs and so Crawford says he used to sit cross legged on the beach or on the bed working on a melody. I heard him playing in the same bar over and over again until I got the right sequence. And he told john really, it's good, I wouldn't mess with it. It's It's so funny to imagine this guy hearing this beautiful song coming up from john lennon. And John's messing with it or tweaking it in the guy's like, it's good. It's almost as good. Just, you know, don't mess with it too much. I promise it sounds great. JOHN later said that the song helps him wrestle with complex emotions in a confessional and abstract way. And he said it was psychoanalysis set to music. Now Paul McCartney and john lennon grew up together and they're in their teens and even George Harrison, the three of them you can see photos of them. They are young guys and they were already playing music together. It's so Paul knew strawberry field that the place that john was talking about and so that here's here's a quote from Paul, he said I've seen strawberry field described as a dull grimy place next door to him that john imagined to be a beautiful place. But in the summer wasn't Dolan grimy at all, it was a secret garden. John's vivid memory of it wasn't to do with the fact that it was the Salvation Army home that was up at the house, there was a wall you could bunk over and it was a rather wild garden. It wasn't manicured at all. So it was easy to hide in. And I love that line, it was easy to hide in because you can imagine a young john lennon let his imagination run in. So for the part where you're where he sings, nothing to get hung about. That's that's the line, nothing to get hung about Strawberry Fields Forever. I always thought that was like nothing to be worried about or nothing to be bothered about. What the line actually is about is his and Mimi, and her instruction was not to play in the grounds of strawberry field. And she didn't want them to get in trouble. And so what john would say back to her was, they can't hang you for it in so 80s on me singing nothing to get hung about Strawberry Fields Forever. He's directly referencing the woman who raised him as a child. And I think that's such a interesting turn on the lyric that I would have not known. Had I not researched it. And so when the band got back together, so they've stopped worrying, they're getting back together. At this point, they are seeing music and career and fame in a very different way. They're over it, they're over the noise of the celebrity and in hit records. And at this point, they want to make music that that moves them in. So you know, in the 60s if a band was going to record a song, the song would be limited to Okay, well let's come up with the song One, two, how are we going to execute this live? Okay, well, here's a here's a guitar part. And here's a bass part, here's a drum part. You wouldn't necessarily think oh, let's put in a cello or let's put in a Mellotron or let's put in these random instruments that even if they sound great, you're not gonna be able to make it you're not gonna be able to execute it live. That was a that was a real

barrier. For artists at this time. It's so what what the Beatles came in with and specifically john lennon for this recording session. He came in and told George Martin who was their producer. He said I'm tired of making this music. I want to make heavy music I want to make I'm tired of making soft music for soft people as I think is his actual quote. And so they went forth with this recording technique. And, you know, john is telling George, he says we don't have to play these songs for anybody live, this is for us. Let's make something that we're gonna love. And so that's what they do. And so the first song that they recorded here for this new album, will be in the first song of Sergeant Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. And it's not included on the album, it ended up being recorded as a double A side with Penny Lane. And,

man, I mean, Sergeant Pepper is like one of the top, it's usually the number one or number two album listed on the all time Best Albums list. And it doesn't include Strawberry Fields Forever, and Penny Lane, which is crazy. So just the dam is that good. And that those two songs were that good. So the song to get back together, they decided to record this song in the studio, they are working on different ways to do it. JOHN has different different versions of it. He plays them on acoustic guitar for them. And again, if you go click in the show notes here, at the end of the episode, you can click to the playlist. And they've got a couple different versions of the songs, you can actually listen to a progression of the song like you can hear it started as an acoustic guitar version. And then you can hear that they add some bongos and they add some bass. And it's almost like a progression from the you know, meet the Beatles. All the way up to current meaning like first version is very basic second version almost sounds like it could be on revolver, where it's it's a standard or it's a still a band arrangement. And it's not until at the end, when they start adding those heavy strings and they they start messing with the sounds and put reverse things in there. That's where the song gets magical for me. And that's what makes it so memorable. So that the way that they recorded this, what are the when the band would get together to record songs, they get together in the studio, and they say, you know, who's got a song and so the story here was, the band is together. Everybody gathers around George Martin, and Paul starts to say I've got one in but john Linda jumps in first and says, oh, I've got I've got a good one. And they said that you know Paul graciously back down, but I wish you know what I pay to be a fly on the wall to hear that interaction. He had to see Paul's face, you know, one of the most famous songwriters, you know, getting shut down and graciously given a Florida his his friend john, who has this song. And they said in most most sessions most new Beatle album sessions started with a john song. And he said it said that they're like a half smile played across Paul's face while he handed the floor to to john and john went on to perform the song for the group, just acoustically. And everybody immediately said it was brilliant. That was Paul's code. This is brilliant. And they all loved it. So they spent the band spent 45 hours recording the song. In contrast, they recorded 10 of the 14 tracks on their first album in 10 hours. So they've gone from knocking out an album like in a day to spending 45 hours on one track. When I went to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame recently, they actually had the Mellotron which is the name of the intro instrument that starts out this, this song, the dude who did that, that's a little part that that Paul McCartney came up with, but actually had it there at the rock Hall. And I was so excited, I just try to get as close as I could to the glass because I thought it was so cool. And I think what makes the song the most unique is you know, when the band is trying out these, this new way of recording, they are not limited by the instruments that they're playing. They are either they're open to anything. So they try the song out in different, you know, different keys, different speeds. And then at the end of the day, they would, in essence, bounce down the song and give it to the guys who ever wanted to listen to it and take it home. So john lennon suck the tracks home and listen to him. And it comes back and he talks to George Martin. He says I'm not I'm not very happy with what we did in Georgia is like, you know, why? What do you mean? And he says, Well, I really like the first half of this take. And I really like the second half of this completely other take, that's in a different tempo. And George Martin is the producer. So he's the guy who has to make this work. And he says, you know how what do you mean I can't I can't mix these two and john lennon says you can do a George to figure it out. It's so the way that they did this. They they sped up one of the tracks and they slowed down one of the other tracks which gives john Lennon's voice a really unique quality, it sounds different than it normally does. The whole the whole feel of the song has a different kind of sound to it. And a lot of it has to do with that the way that they the way that they line that up. Alright, so that's that's the brief brief rundown of the song I can nerd out on this song for a long time, I'm gonna force myself to stop, because I want to head over to the interview. So here's an interview with my friend, Bill Victor, and we're going to talk about the the question that he posted. that bothered me for days about the Beatles. Here we go.

Okay, I'm here with Bill Victor today. He's a buddy of mine, a big Beatles fan. And Bill, you posted a really interesting question that I can't think of anybody else's Facebook posts that stuck with me. It bothered me in a good way as much as yours did from earlier this year. And you posted and you said something like, what's the most Beatle sounding song of the Beatles catalog? And as a hardcore Beatles fan? Oh my gosh, that kind of wrecks my mind for a couple days. And I was like, oh, gosh, is it Penny Lane? Is it a day lifelike? Anyway, so welcome, welcome, Bill, it would love to hear what made you think of even asking that question.

Bill Victor  
Yeah, thanks for having me. Ryan. I think when asked that question, I was looking for the song that I think when Peto people talk about Beatle esque songs, what are they trying to infer? What are they trying to imitate? And what sound are they trying to recreate? And there was several songs that kind of came up in my mind. And really was interesting that the two that came up in my mind the most came out of the, the the like that double A side, right before Sergeant Pepper, and that was Strawberry Fields Forever. And Penny Lane. Those are like to me the two songs that people when they're trying to create a Beatles song. That's the vibe they're going for. And the other song would probably probably be, I Am the Walrus. Man. I love that song. Yeah, and those three songs are the ones I think when people tried to imitate the Beatles, that's the kind of the vibe they're going for. There's a few places and other songs where they're they're trying to knock off a riff here that I know that, too. I feel fine is really popular. I hear that a lot. It also daytripper but like the vibe on a song and Strawberry Fields, and Penny Lane

Ryan Gregg  
being I totally, totally agree. And it's interesting you brought up I Am the Walrus too, because I feel like that is one of my very favorite Beatles songs. And I feel like you don't hear people talk about it as much because it wasn't like as big a hit maybe as some of the others. But the creativity of that and the way they recorded that, to me is really similar to Strawberry Fields. And it's just so creative and amazing. Yeah. So when it comes down to Strawberry Fields, forever, like what are the elements of the song that you think like make it stand out as a Beatle song, like double track vocals is the instrumentation is the chord progression like for you? What, what, what is that?

Bill Victor  
Yeah, I'm kind of a music idiot. I love music, but I really don't know a lot of musical terms and everything. Yeah. And so I think it's that it's that the cello that George Martin, compose that those cello pieces that you see recreated that kind of set off that era of the music going into Sergeant Pepper and then to leading into the Magical Mystery Tour album, I guess you can call it an album. That really is you get the cello and the horns. And it's starting off with the Mellotron that that instrument that kind of, I guess, you know, better night it's it's a precursor to a lot of our our loops, tape machines and samplers and, and just that opening, and just kind of catches you off guard and, you know, looking at some of the reactions. And I've read about Strawberry Fields and some of the reactions of some of the musicians when they heard that they were just blown away and it was so different. And then you hear the stories of how it came together was basically two different versions. JOHN gave them both to George Martin and George Martin. These are different tempos, they're different. They're different keys and judges said you'll, you'll fix it. He's like you got it.

Ryan Gregg  
I wish you could see George Martin's face at that moment where you've got the most famous band in the world with one of the top songwriters of all time saying it's we've already we've already done the recording you just didn't make it work George

Bill Victor  
right in this the story of how they had to what they had to do to make that all work out. Is that are they stretch that they were basically wrapping the tape around the room and all these different spools to get it to blend together and it's it's perfect. This is great. It is perfect. Do

Ryan Gregg  
you think that the fact that they slowed it down also makes us vote in sped it up? Like I think that the That makes it more interesting. His voice is more interesting because it's not how you normally even hear him sing. And I know he likes to mess with the way that his voice sounded. He liked to double track he liked to change his voice, but the fact that it's like slowed down even even gives it a different tonal quality to me than then even some of their other songs, which is interesting.

Bill Victor  
Yeah. You take the way they've they've slowed down his his, his voice, and the lyrics. It's almost it's like a dreamlike state. And I know it. I know the psychedelia movement had maybe started, but that really just kick started things. And you, you just kind of see that you can see when I hear that song, I see in my mind all kinds of psychedelic imagery. And you know, that that just kicked things off, propelled that movement. It's just such a unique song. And I really bought that and Penny Lane just sparked some, just a new era of Beatles music, total. And

Ryan Gregg  
just, you know, even there was even a quote from George Martin say, when he first heard Strawberry Fields, he's just the songwriting, had jumped leaps and bounds from anything he'd ever heard from them before. So I like having him, you know, recognize that right off the bat. And it's interesting. You can, you can hear clips, you know, they have recordings of this, and I'm putting the playlist in the show notes for this podcast. But you can click to the playlist in here, the released versions of the track before they were finished. So like the first version they have out, you know, it's, it's john playing like on an acoustic guitar, and it doesn't sound anything like the song and then you see that they add like some, like a baseline and add some congas, and it's like, even even there, I'm like, oh, it almost sounds like something off Rubber Soul. It's not It's not the thing it became. And I think it's the thing that you mentioned where, like, for me, it's it's the horns and the strings. And those are really George Martin who inflected that stuff. That makes it gosh, it makes it unique. And in Brian, the quote that I read from George Martin talking about john lennon was he just, you know, when he said, make it work, he also said, make it heavy. He's like, we don't have to, we don't have to perform this song. We don't have to do this live. And we want it to sound good to us. And, you know, make it heavy George. And I think those strings and stuff, like you talked about really take it somewhere unique. And I don't know why more bands, haven't taken it there since then, using string arrangements like that. Because to me, that's just it makes it so fascinating to listen to over and over. Because there's something new every time I feel like,

Bill Victor  
right, and just that deep, it went beyond if you knew they had done strings and yesterday, and as you have the string arrangement now in a Rigby, but like you just mentioned that heaviness that cello that just kind of churns through that song. That is one of those things that just kind of identifies it as a Beatles song. That's true. And it picks up in I Am the Walrus. That opening. Yeah, the opening strings of the I Am the Walrus, and that that's just so identified with the Beatles. But there's one group that did that the one group that did that, I think, was yellow, early in yellow, when they were doing a lot of the strings. I mean, they were trying to do something different and they're trying to be more orchestral, but can't get it out of my head. Yes. Is is so Beatles esque, in one of the reasons why is the string arrangements. Hmm.

Ryan Gregg  
That's definitely true. It's also funny because like, you can tell, like, for me in my fear that if you're the same, you can tell when somebody is giving a nod to the Beatles. And you can tell when somebody is being overly influenced. And it's not really their voice that's coming through. It's them trying to buy the Beatles like that. I feel like there's there's a fine line there. And when somebody does it well with a nod to that stuff, it's like okay, I'm gonna like you even more because I see your influences that you're you're nodding to, at least for me, that's how you're

Bill Victor  
Yeah, absolutely. Yeah. If you could put a spin on it. Like you said, pay you pay tribute to it, but not just rip it off or, or Yeah, slavishly imitate it.

Ryan Gregg  
Totally. Well, it's interesting, like from like, looking back and researching this song. And, you know, he john lennon wrote this when he was on set, you know, acting in a movie. He was overseas, the band had had their last tour their last live performance for for an audience in August of 1966. And then, you know, john went over and wrote this song while they were on a break, and they started recording this just a couple months later. And so it's interesting to, for me to like picture him. You know, he's on it talks about him being on a beach with an acoustic guitar in another country. He's on a break. He's finally anonymous enough. Foreign in a foreign country in a way so they're on the beach and the thing that it returns to like content wise is his childhood. In you know, the cash this The lyrics are so fascinating to me and reminds me a little bit subject matter or like, emotional content It reminds me of in my life, which is another one of my favorite Beatle songs. Sure, sure. Yeah. So I'm, I'm interested in that angle of of john lennon songwriting, which is very different than Paul McCartney's.

Bill Victor  
That's a perfect contrast. Strawberry Fields Forever and Penny Lane, both songs about Liverpool. Both great songs, both Eagles esque songs, my mind. Yeah, you know, the content. And the mood and the tone of the songs are just totally different. But I think that's what makes both john and Paul when they work together, or even separate that sort of makes the Beatles run

Ryan Gregg  
totally, it's almost like linens like a half empty and glass half empty. And McCartney is like a glass half full guy. It's so when you hear we didn't get them together. Oh my gosh, that's why they're so great. And for like, I mean, this is a separate topic, but for their solo material, I feel like that's where I'd never connected deeply with many songs of either one of their solo material, either one of their solo songs, because I felt like they were weighing on one side and weigh in on the other side instead of you know, that balance that the Beatles really brought to show in the dark in the light within a quick Gaza quick three minute song, you know, you'd like a day in the life where you've got the, the heaviest sounding song and content, you know, that's going and then you hit that middle section, or Paul McCartney Sagan, you know, woke up, got out of bed, it's like the happiest thing they ever did. And then it goes back to this jarc lyric. I just think that's so interesting. Well, for you, like, as a fan, what was your first interaction with the Magical Mystery Tour albums you remember, like how old you were when you first started or anything like that?

Bill Victor  
Yeah, I remember. This was in the days. This was in the early mid 70s. And I remember the days of a track tape and but my grandparents had an eight track tape machine, I would go visit. And I would just go into the room. And they had, they had this knockoff Beatles greatest hit. And it wasn't like an official release, they had Magical Mystery Tour on it, that the song and I remember checking that album out of the library. When I was in sixth grade or so with me and this other girl in our class, we love the Beatles. And we would take turns checking that album out and checking out the the 67 to 70 greatest hits compilation. And I would just take turns alternating between those two. And that's Yeah, remember that. And right after that the the movie, The Peter Frampton beegees movie came out around that time. That's kind of takes me back to that. I remember checking that album out of the library and both loving it being confused by Blue Jay way. Loving fool on the hill and some of the other songs. Yeah, I don't know if I was ready for it's all mixed up or the eight minute George song, right? I'm still when I was 12 years old. Yeah, I just remember. I Am the Walrus was just, this blew me away. Again, that's one of those definite Beatles songs. It just I think when people are trying to imitate the Beatles, that's one of those songs that they return to.

Ryan Gregg  
Absolutely, I definitely agree. You know, it's funny when I when I got into them, I was in, like seventh grade, but at the time, you know, that was in the 90s. And so I was really into Pearl Jam and Nirvana. And that's all I was listening to. And then, you know, somebody who played the Beatles might have been my mom playing that that same like blue album you're talking about with the, you know, the 67 or 70 time period. And that like sparks, you know, the connection between, you know, not just grunge isn't the only music that's good. There's good music from the 60s and really sent me off down this path of Beatles albums. And I, you know, got into every album, but I remember going to it's called bills, records and tapes in Dallas. And I remember that I had bought every single Beatles album, except for Magical Mystery Tour as the last one. And I remember feeling a little bit sad. Like this is the last new Beatles album, I'll get to experience Isn't that funny? Like is a seventh grade. Like there's a little bit of sadness when I bought it. But golly, it's just the songs are so amazing. And it was, it's like you said it wasn't meant to be a typical album. But now that's really how we listened to it. And the double A side, you know, that we the way that they release that is interesting too, because by releasing Penny Lane and Strawberry Fields as a double A side, it actually hurt them. And they didn't go to number one for the first time. And that was George Martin's idea. And he said that that was one of the biggest mistakes of his career, right, which I thought was interesting, but I feel like there might have even been a quote saying it took some relief. It took some stress off of them because they didn't have To hit that number anymore, you know, they suck. It's the number two good grief, but they were kept out by Engelbert humperdinck.

Bill Victor  
That's right. That was the number one song. He watched him. Literally listen with the song.

Ryan Gregg  
Oh, man, that's got to be a life highlight for him. I mean, that's so crazy. You beat the Beatles Strawberry Fields Forever with

Bill Victor  
an interesting story about Strawberry Fields Forever was that George tells the judge Martin tells the story of him being invited to john Lennon's Dakota apartment. And they were talking about the music in general was just being contrary to that he was just railing and gets everything they did. He said that he would he wished he could rerecord everything The Beatles did. And George said even Strawberry Fields and john said, especially Strawberry Fields.

Ryan Gregg  
Do you think that just ripped his heart out? Like especially when he bled over that track to get it right? Yeah, you hear that? Oh? You gotta wonder like, from john lennon, like, what was the Gosh, what were you hoping for? Are my what was the artistic vision? If it wasn't where it ended up as it's so fascinating.

Bill Victor  
I think it was just john tried to agitate a room. I bet he was really proud of everything did but beaver here the john winter or the Yon winter interviewed? Like to kind of poke it all the Beatles lithology tear down or down? but i think i think i think when you find later on in life, it's music. It's approaching double fantasy. I think he he really came around a lot of that. A lot of what he had done, I think he was proud of what he had done. I think so. In fact, I think it's the Beatles is George and john had lived. Continue. You know, I don't think john would have been the one for that reunion. I think it would have been George.

Ryan Gregg  
Interesting. That's a great question there too. Yeah, I can see that. Yeah, I can see that. There's there's some bootlegs out front. I mean, it's terrible. But it's of john lennon, Paul McCartney, and who like Stevie Wonder or somebody Have you ever heard this like recorded in the late 70s? throughout the night la?

Bill Victor  
Yeah, exactly. I have heard that is it's terrible, but it's not good. It's one of the things that did was in the 70s judges. He went so primal and went back to the roots of rock and you see even had a rock and roll album where covers doing old rock, he was loved rock and roll. And I think that was just that old style. Late 50s, early 60s Rock and Roll his own that was always something that did he clung to.

Ryan Gregg  
Definitely, Man, I wish I could be a fly on the wall at dinner, though to hear Lenin you know, tell George Martin, we just wish we could have done it over. Ah, that's just that's, that's me. for him. We went to I went on a trip to the rock'n'roll Hall of Fame last month. And they actually had the Mellotron there at the at the Hall of Fame in encased in this like plastic, you know, glass case, whatever it was, and I just you know, you see it and you just picture them, you know, fiddling with the notes and trying to come up with those flute sounds and I press this close to the case as I could as close to the instrument as I could get. Just won't touch it. Well, I'm trying to think of any other Are there any other spots about the song or the album that are worth noting? ever

Bill Victor  
really just kind of stands on its own? Yeah. And then when you know you have the Magical Mystery Tour, which you don't really see it counted like as an album release. You almost see people moving from from pepper to the White Album. Yeah, they talk about kind of Beatles discography Sure, in the White Album just is just totally different from from Sergeant Pepper's. It's like that, that that stand alone that thing that they did, they finally were freed from the idea of touring, they could just experiment, do whatever they wanted. This is what they came up with. And, you know, I go back and forth on what my favorite albums on the Beatles were in. I think when I was younger, it was definitely with the Beatles or the American release. I have. I'm looking at it right now. I have the like, original American, meet the Beatles album. Yeah. It's great. It's worth nothing because it's scratched up I found in my basement and it was actually in it was in the album case of sounds of silence. So that was that was kid Yeah. And then it was Sergeant Pepper. And then of course, you're like, Oh, I think revolver into the UK releases when those started to come out in the late 80s and early 90s. And you started to hear more of those. But then one of the beauties of The Beatles is that this the last few years especially with Sergeant Pepper, a couple years ago, is these revivals. Oh, it's the 15th anniversary and Giles Martin is doing it. He's doing masters. So So, you know, in 2017, we had Sergeant Pepper 2018 we had the White Album 2019 we're on the road. And then next year, Peter Jackson's coming up with this Let it be movie, which is so cool. Yeah. And the beauty is it in a couple years, it just starts all over again. The 60th anniversary of all these things, and it's just, it's fantastic.

Ryan Gregg  
Well, it's so fun as a fan it like that the idea that there are takes there are texts that they've just released, like from starch and pepper from last year, there's all these, you know, unreleased, you know, takes from from the songs that they just they've waited 50 years to release. I just can't i can't wrap my head around it. It's so it's so awesome as a fan to be able to hear new stuff from this group that has ceased to be existing for 50 years, almost, you know, so it's, it is it is very rewarding, like you said, as a fan. Did you ever see this Cirque de Soleil love? No. We went a couple years ago, and it was it was it was crazy. Because the album you know, they mix the songs between various songs, various takes from different songs and putting putting together so it kinda is like a mind trip. You're like, well, what, what did they just do there, but it was interesting. They had a visual element to it. But

Bill Victor  
I think that's one of the beauties, the beauties of all of this is that George Giles Martin has been such a wonderful curator of all this stuff. And he's done such a great job to telling stories giving kind of, I would say, adding the mythology but just kind of correcting the record on a few things. Especially finding out that maybe the band wasn't as fractured during the White Album, as everybody thought they were in the field, putting forth these recordings, and you're seeing them rehearse together, and I think he's just been a wonderful curator of all of this material.

Ryan Gregg  
Yeah, absolutely. I mean, what a what a gift, either to fans to be able to hear that too, that his work is given us. So I love that for sure. Well, Bill, I think that's all the questions I have here. Man, I really appreciate you taking time to talk about this song. And, you know, your your question is still gonna be rolling around my head over, you know, what's the most Beatle esque sounding song but I landed on Strawberry Fields Forever, too. But then every time I hear I definitely like that song, you know, can't hear it. So it's it's a great, it's a great question. But I appreciate you getting to take time and talk with me today, man. Thanks. Thanks

Bill Victor  
for asking me. I appreciate it's a privilege and I love. I'll talk to anybody about the Beatles. Awesome. Well, thank

Ryan Gregg  
you, Bill. Thank you, Ryan. Alright, bye. Thanks for listening to songs in the podcast. Be sure to subscribe so you don't listen up so leave a rating and review so others can find the podcast as well. Music provided by Tyler Ramsey.