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Friday, January 16, 2015

ANTHOLOGY 3 - side four

The Get Back sessions of January 1969 are represented by the next batch of tracks.  As there were no proper recordings at the Twickenham Film Studios rehearsals in the early part of that month, all of these selections come from late January when the group reconvened at 3 Savile Row in their unfinished Apple Studios using borrowed equipment and adding keyboardist Billy Preston to the live proceedings.

I've Got a Feeling - This is the first official release of the take that engineer Glyn Johns used on both of his Get Back albums, neither of which met with the approval of the Beatles in '69 and '70.  The performance is quite good, featuring a particularly fine vocal by Paul on the bridge, but it breaks down before the final section.

She Came in through the Bathroom Window - McCartney debuted this composition at these sessions, though it did not surface until its appearance as part of the medley on Abbey Road at the end of the year.  This version is considerably slower and has some nice touches that I love, including John's harmony vocal on the chorus and George's pedal-tone guitar work.  After the take, Paul demonstrates what he terms a "classical" variation that he feels the song could use.

Dig a Pony - The Anthology chooses to give us a somewhat shaky runthrough of this Lennon tune - one not nearly as good as the rooftop version on the Let It Be album.  We do get to hear the "All I want is" line at either end of the song - something re-producer Phil Spector decided to edit out of that earlier release.  And John forgets his own lyrics in a few spots, which is not unusual for him, though the tricky wordplay of this composition makes it understandable in this instance.   

Two of Us - Another ragged runthrough - this time of a McCartney number.  The Beatles seem to be still working out the arrangement at this point, with no drumwork from Ringo before the bridges and some hesitant guitar picking the second time around.  Paul and John are also uncertain of which lyrics to sing at the beginning of some of the verses.  And the track is oddly faded out before it would come to a natural stop, as all of these live tracks were required to do.

For You Blue - The boys only spent one day working on this Harrison composition, yet they seemed to have a lot of fun doing so.  Paul plays an intro on piano on this take, though he does not take a solo during the instrumental break.  George's acoustic and John's slide guitar parts and Ringo's drums are pretty much the same as on the master.

Teddy Boy - McCartney tried to sell the group on this song on two separate occasions, both of which are represented on this combined take.  John grows bored at one point and starts calling out as if he were at a square dance in time to the music.  Paul would have to wait until he began work on his first solo album to make a proper recording of this little gem.

Medley: Rip it Up/Shake, Rattle and Roll/Blue Suede Shoes - Countless oldies were played during these sessions.  Few were complete versions and many were merely a line or two, but an extended medley occurred on January 26th.  Since there was no thought of releasing this jam, John and Paul's shared vocals are half-hearted in places, but the playing by the Beatles and Billy Preston is quite good on this sequence of tunes by some of their rock and roll heroes.

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