Turn Me On, Dead Man - The John Barrett Tapes

The Beatles


Label: VigOtone
Part No.: VIGO-178/179
Country of Origin: USA
Release Date: announced for July 1999
CD-R classification: professional
Inserts: professionally printed de-luxe packaging and inserts
CD-R label: rubber stamped
Total Time: CD1: 60:00   CD2: 57:11

"This 2CD set will prove to be a revelatory experience for Beatle fans. The
set is comprised of tracks taken directly from the late Abbey Road engineer's
cassette dubs of material found during his vault searches in 1982. Included are
previously unavailable tracks and mixes as well as items featuring significant
upgrades in sound quality from earlier appearances on other collections. The
package also includes a booklet with informative liner-notes and rare photos."

CD 1:

Tr Title CD notes Comments by Max Mismetti Time
1 From Me To You stereo mix of mono 45 Intro with harmonica and no vocals. Some sort of outfake but done by an Abbey Road engineer (John Barrett). 1:57
2 From Me To You 1982 stereo remix Intro with vocals and no harmonica. Just like the official stereo (as heard on the vinyl Red Album (1962-1966)). 1:57
3 Thank You Girl stereo mix of mono 45 This stereo mix is the best I've ever heard. It does NOT have those terrible harmonica overdubs in the middle ("way that you do") but has harmonica on the very end. 2:07
4 Thank You Girl unechoed stereo version This is the stereo mix that is similar to the official one but it doesn't have that excessive reverb added by Capitol. 2:04
5 One After 909 take 2 - 1982 mono mix Just a mono mix of take 2, no big deal. 2:48
6 She Loves You 1966 stereo remix 1 Includes Geoff Emerick's slate ("She loves you this is RS1"). A fake stereo "She loves you" done by equalizing the left and right sides differently. 2:23
7 She Loves You 1966 stereo remix 2 Also includes slate ("this is RS2 and version 2"). A fake stereo "She loves you" done by panning the song through the stereo (like the stereo UA 'A Hard Day's Night'). Pretty lame. 2:26
8 This Boy 1966 stereo remix 15 "This boy, this is RM... RS15!". The mix made by mistake for "Oldies but Goldies" (they were supposed to mix "Bad boy" instead). 2:26
9 I'm A Loser 1982 stereo remix I still haven't compared this to the official one. 2:24
10 Mr. Moonlight alternate version - 1982 stereo mix Excellent mix. 2:32
11 What You're Doing unreleased take 11 Excellent take! I just love those harmonies thoughout the entire song. One of the highlights of this bootleg. 2:04
12 That Means A Lot take 1 - stereo Not only this is a true, clean and dry stereo mix, but it also includes slate! The song fades much slower so you can hear a little more of it. Makes one wonder why the hell didn't the Anthology folks mix it from master tape instead of getting that lousy 'Sessions' mix... 2:46
13 That Means A Lot stereo edit piece This doesn't sound to me like an edit piece. Sounds like another take that was recorded over, since it starts with dialogue and cuts abruptly to this.
Through this and the previous track, I finally figured how they recorded this song. They recorded vocals, bass and guitars in one take and overdubbed piano and vocals on it.
This "edit piece" has the ending of a guitars/vocals/bass take.
14 That Means A Lot mono - low reverb mix Low reverb? Nah. The only advantage here is that it's mono, instead of fake stereo (as it is on Anthology). 2:27
15 That Means A Lot take 20 - stereo The Beatles attempting to record the song more than a month after their first take. This take breaks down and features a somewhat lame riff done by George. 1:12
16 That Means A Lot take 21 - stereo This is pretty close to take 1's arrangement. Sounds good but they're not playing it very well and it breaks down in the end. 2:09
17 That Means A Lot take 23 - stereo I don't know why it has no take 22... Anyway, this was previously available in 'Arrive without aging' but there it sounds terrible and muffled. Here it's as clean as it can. This take is a brief break down. 0:23
18 That Means A Lot take 24 - stereo This take disolves into chaos after Paul misses the lyrics. 1:44
19 That Means A Lot test - stereo This is probably the most cacophonic thing The Beatles ever did. Ringo bangs randomly on the drums while the others misses chords and Paul sings moslty out of tune. They say it's just a test, I wonder what were they testing here. 0:55
20 Help take 8 - basic tracks - 1982 stereo mix I think this is the same take that was featured on 'Abbey Road Show' boot (only it sounds better). And if it is, then according to Doug Sulpy this is take 4 of the song (which is NOT on 'Studio #2 Sessions at the Abbey Road Vol. 4' along with other "Help!" takes.) 2:17
21 Norwegian Wood take 1 w/slate   2:07
22 Norwegian Wood take 2 - major quality upgrade This was also featured on 'Arrive without aging' but here is sounds excellent (while there it's crap). 2:27
23 12 Bar Original take 1 - major quality upgrade Same as above. 0:32
24 12 Bar Original take 2 - major quality upgrade Same as above. 6:50
25 Paperback Writer 1982 stereo remix I haven't compared these two mixes with their original versions. 2:19
26 Rain 1982 stereo remix   2:53
27 Tomorrow Never Know mono mix 11 Finally! A clean and easy-to-find source for RM11 of "Tomorrow never knows". This mix was issued on a limited release of  'Revolver' in the UK back in 1966. 2:57

CD 2:

Tr Title CD notes Comments by Max Mismetti Time
1 Strawberry Fields Forever take 7 - mono mix complete A clean sounding, complete mono mix of take 7. This is also on 'Anthology 2' but there it's crossfaded with take 25's rhythm track. 3:11
2 Strawberry Fields Forever take 26 - mono mix with new vocal Never heard before, this is same old take 26 but it has vocals from the start. This explains why we could hear "ghost" vocals at the begining of this take. 3:07
3 Penny Lane complete oboe version - mono mix This one sounds very nice. Why the hell didn't the 'Anthology' people release this in stereo, instead of making a beautifully 24-track mixed outfake?
I really enjoyed those oboe riffs on the end.
4 Penny Lane mono mix 10 Best sounding RM10 I've ever heard. RM10 is the mono Penny Lane with that trumpet ending. 2:59
5 Penny Lane 1982 stereo remix This seems a re-EQ'd mix. Haven't heard it with a "microscope" to check for differences. 3:00
6 A Day In The Life 1982 stereo remix Starts with count-in. Otherwise it's the same as the released version. 5:06
7 Hello Goodbye 1982 stereo remix I'm not sure, but I think the cellos are more present on this track. 3:21
8 Lady Madonna 1982 stereo remix - without sax overdub Another outtake of this song (for our "Lady Madonna" outtake collection... 2:15
9 Hey Jude - rehearsal 1982 stereo remix This is very incomplete (not on the bootleg but on the source itself). It begins just before the "na-na-nah"s. This take was taken >from the filming of "Music!" TV show. It ends with John's "woogie-woogie!" but goes a little further on dialogue between John, Paul and George Martin. 2:41
10 What's The New Mary Jane 1968 stereo mix Yet another mix of this track. 6:05
11 Step Inside Love unedited 1982 stereo mix This sequence is another highlight of this CD. Of course it doesn't sound as good as 'Anthology 3' but it's stereo and complete. 1:31
12 Los Paranoias unedited 1982 stereo mix Paul does some great "vocal trumpet". Why did they leave this out of 'Anthology 3' (and if you notice, there is empty space on all 'Anthology' discs). 3:56
13 The Way You Look Tonight 1982 stereo mix - unreleased song This is very similar to the song they were actually recording ("I will"). 1:11
14 Can You Take Me Back? 1982 stereo mix - long version Just great!!! And now I know why they fade this out so quickly on the White Album (because it's very near the real end). 1:16
15 Shake, Rattle And Roll 1982 stereo mix This is more honest outtake-wise, but on 'Anthology' they managed to delete most of the mistakes and it sounds as if they're playing better. Here it's complete, with all mistakes. 2:02
16 Kansas City / Miss Ann / Lawdy Miss Clawdy 1982 stereo mix A rather clumsy medley, but in stereo (previously available in mono only)! 3:54
17 Blue suede shoes 1982 stereo mix Also heard on 'Anthology 3', longer here. 2:16
18 Not Fade Away 1982 stereo mix - unreleased song This has very few vocal parts, George sings a lot off-mike. 3:54
19 Because 1982 stereo remix This was previously available in a number of bootlegs. It's that 1/2 a cappella "Because" that has the instrumentation in the end. 2:15


Turn Me On Dead Man

Prior to the early 1980's, it was pure hearsay amongst Beatles aficionados as to what was inside the EMI tape vaults pertaining to the group's residency at Abbey Road and other studios from 1962 until 1970. Also, very little was known about actual recording dates of their albums and singles. Most of the information that was available to fans came from contemporary reports in UK music magazines such as New Musical Express or Melody Maker, or fan mags like Beatles Monthly. This info, some correct, some not, was then regurgitated in many of the earlier Beatles books, such as Roy Carr and Tony Tyler's An Illustrated Record or Harry Castleman and Wally Podrazik's All Together Now.

All of this uncertainty was to change beginning in 1981. That year, an engineer at Abbey Road named John Barrett found he had cancer, and was looking for a way to occupy his time while undergoing treatment. Ken Townsend, the manager of the studios at the time, thought that finally going through the vaults and seeing what exactly was and was not there with regards to the Beatles' many recording sessions would be an excellent task for the ailing engineer.

Barrett ripped into his task with gusto, spending weeks listening through every tape and making up a detailed "catalog" of sorts, with multi-colored tabs and dividers for easy access to the various sections, and color codings for the multitudes of mixes and takes which were included. The first fruits of this research was used on the insert for the box of EMI's The Beatles Singles Collection issued in December of 1982, which featured for the first time the recording dates for the tracks enclosed. Also, an informative article in Record Collector by Nick Piercey in October 1983 included EMI mouthpiece Mike Heatley using Barrett's guide when answering Piercey's queries about various Beatles recording issues.

Throughout 1982, Barrett was also compiling audio material for a Beatles multi-media show that would take place in the famed Abbey Road Studio Two while it was being refurbished in the Summer of 1983. While this cataloging and assemblage for The Beatles At Abbey Road (as the show was to be imaginatively titled) was occurring, Barrett was running cassette dubs of some of the more interesting material for his own use. Some of the material was mixed as he was running his tapes, while some tracks were the original mixes done at the time of the recording sessions. Barrett knew what he was doing; he dubbed off legendary tracks such as "Leave My Kitten Alone", which had never been issued, as well as the more interesting alternate takes in the vaults, like "Norwegian Wood" take one. Also, many of the tracks he dubbed were stereo mixes of titles that at the time hadn't seen the light of day in stereo, or had seen limited release, such as "This Boy".

Meanwhile, the late Roger Scott, a well-known UK disc jockey, was enlisted to do the narration for the Abbey Road show, and was given copies of these dubs as well. Scott actually used some of the tracks from these dubs in 1984 (the same year Barrett died, in February) for a 12-hour radio show on the Beatles entitled "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band". This material subsequently appeared (taken directly from the radio show discs) on the NEMS release Not For Sale in early 1985. Copies of some of the tapes made it into other hands on the Continent, who subsequently issued various series such as Ultra Rare Trax on Swingin' Pig, and Yellow Dog's Unsurpassed Masters, based on the Barrett dubs, mixed with other sources.

However, much of the material dubbed off by Barrett went unissued... until now. Taken from the original cassette dubs, here are a bunch o' Beatles tracks you've never heard in this form. They are all either different mixes, or significant upgrades from previous appearances, or in some cases, completely unissued.

While John Barrett's name may not be as legendary in the Beatles' world as other researchers such as Mark Lewisohn, his initial work was the cornerstone for all that is now finally known about the Beatles' recording sessions. in tribute, we hope you enjoy these tapes... hopefully John Barrett would be happy to know that his efforts were not in vain!

Trevor Osmond Williams
June 1999

The Songs:
(All tracks mixed by John Barrett in 1982 unless otherwise noted)

Disc One: 60:00

1. From Me To You
(stereo) (Recorded March 5, 1963)
This track is the released take of the Beatles' third single, yet is featured here in the closest form yet to a stereo mix of the mono single version, with the harmonica in place over the intro. it features the tail-end of Paul's "1-2-3" count-off, but does not include the introductory "Da-Da-Da"'s.

2. From Me To You
(stereo) (Recorded March 5, 1963)
A Barrett remix of the previously available stereo version, which is sans the harmonica introduction, but features the "Da-Da-Da"'s!

3. Thank You Girl
(stereo) (Recorded March 5 & 13, 1963)
The B-side of "From Me To You" is included in a stereo mix which is similar to the mono single version, which featured fewer harmonica overdubs in comparison to the next version. There is also a bit of studio noise at the beginning.

4. Thank You Girl
(stereo) (Recorded March 5 & 13, 1963)
A long-awaited mix, an "unechoed" stereo version with harmonica over the middle-eight as well as the intro and outro. This previously appeared on Capitol's The Beatles Second Album, swamped in reverb placed there by the oh-so-wise Capitol Tower engineers in March of 1964.

5. One After 909
(mono) (Recorded March 5, 1963)
Take 2 of a series of five takes (hear them all in stereo on Vigotone's March 5, 1963 disc). George was obviously having problems with the solo here; listen to John's comment as the song fades out. The problem was solved with take 5 which was an edit piece which picks up the song from just before the solo to the end. A Barrett edit of take 4 and this edit piece can be heard on Another Sessions...Plus.

6. She Loves You
7. She Loves You
(rechanneled stereo) (Recorded July 1, 1963, mixed November 8, 1966)
in late 1966, when it was apparent there was not to be a new Beatles studio album in time for Christmas, a greatest hits album was hastily assembled for the UK market only. Actually, A Collection Of Beatles Oldies (But Goldies) was welcomed by fans at the time as a way of picking up several tracks which had never appeared on UK albums, of which "She Loves You" was one. The problem came when putting the stereo version of the album together, as the session tapes of "She Loves You" were long gone. Thus, on November 8, Geoff Emerick spent time trying to fashion a stereo version from the mono mixdown tape. The first mix you'll hear (with his voice featured on the beginning slate, as it is on the second mix as well) was the one used for the LP, with the bass frequencies emphasized in the left channel and the highs in the right. However, the second one has Emerick shifting the track from channel to channel when various sections of the song were being performed, not dissimilar to the trick United Artists engineers utilized on the US stereo A Hard Day's Night LP. (NOTE: In Mark Lewisohn's The Beatles Recording Sessions, he states that remix two was not the one used for the Oldies LP.)

8. This Boy
(stereo) (Recorded October 17, 1963, mixed November 10, 1966)
While the Oldies album was being prepared, it was discovered that there was one Beatles track which had not appeared on any UK LP to date: "Bad Boy", the Larry Williams potboiler which had surfaced on the US Beatles VI LP in June of 1965. The track was called up for remixing, but instead of receiving the tape for "Bad Boy", the tape for "This Boy" had been sent instead! Engineer Peter Brown duly mixed the track into stereo for the first time, and it is his voice heard on the opening slate for "RS15". It was then discovered that this was the incorrect track required, but "Bad Boy" was never remixed in the end, as the original 1965 mix was found to be sufficient. This mix of "This Boy" went unissued until 1976, when it appeared on a Capitol of Canada 45 with "All My Loving" on the flip side, but this is its first appearance with the slate.

9. I'm A Loser
(stereo) (Recorded August 14, 1964)
An alternate stereo mix of the Beatles For Sale LP track prepared by Barrett in 1982 for the Abbey Road presentation.

10. Mr. Moonlight
(stereo) (Recorded August 14, 1964)
This take was indeed issued on Anthology 1 in 1995, but in a compressed, extremely narrow stereo mix. This is a superior mix by Barrett, which is more faithful to the stereo mixing style of 1964.

11. What You're Doing
(stereo) (Recorded September 30, 1964)
A truly exciting, never before issued item, the 11th take of this Beatles For Sale track which was temporarily marked "best" until the Beatles remade the song on October 26. It's a bit rough around the edges, but features a slate, studio chat, full vocals from Paul and John, and includes a "false ending" which was not utilized in the final version.

12. That Means A Lot (Take 1) (stereo) (Recorded February 20, 1965, mixed February 23, 1965)
13. That Means A Lot (Edit piece) (stereo) (Recorded February 20, 1965)
14. That Means A Lot (Low reverb mix) (mono) (Recorded and mixed February 20, 1965)
15. That Means A Lot (Take 20) (stereo) (Recorded March 30, 1965)
16. That Means A Lot (Take 21) (stereo) (Recorded March 30, 1965)
17. That Means A Lot (Take 23) (stereo) (Recorded March 30, 1965)
18. That Means A Lot (Take 24) (stereo) (Recorded March 30, 1965)
19. That Means A Lot (test) (stereo) (Recorded March 30, 1965)
With this series of takes, we track the journey of an unreleased Beatles song. This was not one of the Lennon/McCartney team's finer moments, and was eventually recorded by expatriate P.J. Proby on April 7, 1965 for an unsuccessful 45 release. However, the Beatles gave it a go over two separate recording sessions for Help!, and the results are featured here, complete with slates and studio chatter. All of the above tracks are either previously unavailable mixes (in the case of the first three), previously unreleased (Take 20 and 21) or in more superior quality than available before (the last three).

20. Help
(stereo) (instrumental) (Recorded April 13, 1965)
This take 8 "basic tracks" version was used in the Abbey Road show after being mixed to stereo by Barrett.

21. Norwegian Wood (This Bird Has Flown)
(stereo) (Recorded October 12, 1965)
Take 1, as presented several times before on other releases, though it is included here with a s1ate and some studio chat previously unheard prior to this release. This was one of two mixes produced by Barrett the other one is found on Another Sessions.

22. Norwegian Wood (This Bird Has Flown)
(stereo) (Recorded October 12, 1965)
Take 2, in markedly better quality than any previous issue.

23. 12 Bar Original
24. 12 Bar Original
(stereo) (Recorded November 4, 1965)
An instrumental "Green Onions" cop, which was recorded as a desperation move when it seemed the Rubber Soul LP was going to be a bit short on tunes. Thankfully, John came up with "Girl", Paul offered "I'm Looking Through You", and "Wait" was dug up from the archives from its non-appearance on Help! "12 Bar Original" was then released to the vaults, thus keeping it from being the song on Rubber Soul that everyone would skip over on repeated listenings! Here are takes 1 (a breakdown) and 2, in an upgrade from previous appearances, in stereo with slate.

25. Paperback Writer
(stereo) (Recorded April 13-14, 1966)
26. Rain
(stereo) (Recorded April 14-16, 1966)
Both of these tracks, the A-sides and B-sides respectively of the Beatles' brilliant pre-Revolver 45, are remixes Barrett made specifically for the Abbey Road presentation, with differences in placements of instruments and vocals immediately noticeable to those folks who take interest in such things!

27. Tomorrow Never Knows
(mono) (Recorded April 6-7, 1966, mixed June 6, 1966)
As a special bonus, we have taken the liberty of straying from the Barrett tapes for one track. Featured here is the extremely rare mono mix (RM11) of "Tomorrow Never Knows" which was included on a select few first pressings of the monaural UK Revolver LP (matrix #XEX 606-1 only). This came about as a result of George Martin making a last second call on July 14, 1966 (as the album was already in the cutting stages) to Geoff Emerick to replace this mix with RM8, which had been produced earlier, on April 27. However, it wasn't changed before some pressings had already been manufactured with RM11, thus insuring that very few people would ever get to hear this considerably different (in both content and length) mix. Now you can see for yourself if old George made the right decision.

Disc Two: 57:11

1. Strawberry Fields Forever
(mono) (Recorded and mixed November 29, 1966)
This is the complete mono mix (RM3) of take 7, which was crossfaded on Anthology 2 into a newly-created, drums-only mix of take 25. This original mono version was previously only available on an acetate included on Vigotone's It's Not Too Bad CD. but it has a count-in here (and is of course taken from tape!).

2. Strawberry Fields Forever
(mono) (Recorded December 8-9 & 15,1966, mixed December 15, 1966)
A rough mono mix (RM9 for those of you keeping score), which is new in that it features a rough John Lennon singje4racked vocal over the "orchestral version" (take 26) for the first time. All other mixes of this rendition which have appeared in the past have been in stereo, with no complete vocal existing on top of the track.

3. Penny Lane
(mono) (Recorded December 29, 1966, January 4-6 & 9-12, 1967, mixed January 12, 1967)
Another exciting discovery, the complete "oboe" version of "Penny Lane" as originally mixed down to mono (RM8) after recording woodwind and brass overdubs for the track on the 12th of January. Paul took this mix home and realized it needed something else to make it complete, which ended up being a Bach trumpet solo which was recorded five days later. In 1995, a hybrid of the oboe and trumpet versions was mixed for Anthology 2, but the "oboe only" mix appears here for the first time, complete with some studio noise and a count-in at the beginning.

4. Penny Lane
(mono) (Recorded December 29, 1966, January 4-6 & 9-12 & 17, 1967, mixed January 17, 1967)
Along came David Mason and his Bach trumpet, and "Penny Lane" was mixed into mono and completed. Or was it? This mix (RM10), featuring a seven-note ending trumpet figure over the ending, is very close to the RM11 which was shipped to Capitol in the US immediately after its completion, and was used for the initial pressings of the promotional 45's for the song. However, the mix was improved upon on January 25, and RM14 is the one that was used from that point on. RM10 is included here in all of its mono glory.

5. Penny Lane
(stereo) (Recorded December 29, 1986, January 4-6 & 9-12, 1967)
A stereo remix also prepared for the Abbey Road presentation, reflecting the final "non4rurnpet ending".

6. A Day In The Life
(stereo) (Recorded January 19-20, February 3 & 10, 1967)
7. Hello Goodbye
(stereo) (Recorded October 2, 19-20 & 25, November 1-2, 1967)
8. Lady Madonna
(stereo) (Recorded February 3 & 6, 1968)
All three of the above are stereo remixes by Barrett, again for The Beatles At Abbey Road. "A Day In The Life" includes John's count-in and therefore, a clean guitar intro instead of the crossfaded Sgt. Pepper LP version. The other two have distinct differences, particularly "Lady Madonna" which doesn't include any of the saxophone overdubs found on the issued mixes.

9. Hey Jude
(stereo) (Recorded September 16, 1968)
This particular performance of the Fab Four's most popular single was the soundtrack for a staple of Beatles movie marathons over the last 25 years: the clip of the Beatles rehearsing "Hey Jude" for the National Music Council of Great Britain's documentary, Music! As this clip was also used in the Abbey Road presentation, 8arrett found the multi-tracks for the rehearsal and mixed them into stereo to accompany the film.

10. What's The New Mary Jane
(stereo) (recorded August 14, 1968, mixed October 14, 1968)
An infamous unreleased John Lennon composition, meant for the "White Album" but dropped when it was decided that one unlistenable track ("Revolution #g") was enough for one album, "Mary Jane" exists in a variety of different mixes, both vintage and more recent. This happens to be one of a six-minute and five-second duration, and one of two mixes produced at this October 14 mixing session. After all that effort, "Mary Jane" wouldn't be issued officially until 1998 and Anthology 3 in a radically remixed form, albeit a more listenable form as well!

11. Step Inside Love
(stereo) (Recorded September 16, 1968)
12. Los Paranoias
(stereo) (Recorded September 16, 1968)
13. The Way You Look Tonight
(stereo) (Recorded September 16, 1968)
14. Can You Take Me Back?
(stereo) (Recorded September 16, 1968)
These four "songs" were recorded during the session for The Beatles (The White Album) track "I Will", with only Paul, John and Ringo in attendance. A whopping 67 takes were recorded during the eight-hour session, but to alleviate the tedium, Paul very informally broke into the above tunes. "Step Inside Love" and "Los Paranoias" were combined on Anthology 3 in 1996, but were edited in comparison to their appearance here. "Step Inside Love" is, of course, a tune Paul gave to Cilla Black and who had recorded it a few months earlier. "The Way You Look Tonight" has never previously surfaced and is basically the tune of "I Will" with impromptu lyrics. "Can You Take Me Back" is a never-heard-before long version of the link track used between "Cry Baby Cry" and "Revolution #9" on The Beatles.

15. Shake, Rattle And Roll
16. Medley: Kansas City / Miss Ann / Lawdy Miss Clawdy
17. Blue Suede Shoes
(stereo) (Recorded January 26, 1969)
The sessions described as "hell" by John Lennon, the dreaded Get Back / Let It Be project, did produce some enjoyable musical moments. Most of them are collected on Vigotone's As Nature Intended and Get Back-The Glyn Johns Final Compilation, but this Barrett mixed medley of old rock'n'roll chestnuts is uncollected on either of those sets.

18. Not Fade Away
(stereo) (Recorded January 29, 1969)
The first appearance of this Get Back / Let It Be track in stereo. A very loose rendition and another indication that Buddy Holly remained a fab favorite to the end (Also check out "Mailman Bring Me No More Blues" on Sessions and Another Sessions...Plus).

19. Because
(stereo) (Recorded August 1 & 4, 1969)
We end our trawl through the John Barrett tapes with one of the more effective ideas he utilized for The Beatles At Abbey Road: a vocals-only mix of "Because" from 1969's Abbey Road. Actually, it's vocals-only for half the song, with the synthesizer coming in at the "love is old, love is now" section, but features a new mix throughout the track.

Comments by Max Mismetti

This boot should be awarded as "bootleg of the year 1999". This has excellent quality throughout, new stuff and major sound upgrades.

Review and track analysis by Peter Gustenhoff


This must be one of the the best new Beatles release since....since a very long time both regarding new material, soundquality and package. Although there's some previously released items and even some of the songs (to me) are sounding suspiciously like the ordinary legitimate releases this is one to get. Most of the songs have now been released (or should I say promised to be?) in various compilations - if this is the best way to get them I don't know, but it's surely excellent and with the scarcity of available new bootleg titles DON'T THINK TWICE if you get the chance...


The cover notes claims that these tracks and remixes were made in the early 80's by John Barrett (who is the "Dead Man" of the title). It has been debated if that's true - I don't know the exact story. For sure many of the tracks seems to be the same remixes as used in the 1983 "Abbey Road Videoshow", the soundtrack of which has been bootlegged before, but never from "original tape sources" in such a perfect quality Many of the tracks have only slight (but very significant) differences as compared to previously available versions, thus the "track by track" analysis below. If you think it's too long, save your time and go hunting for this doubledisc instead....


2 different stereo remixes apparantly made from the original session tapes. The first remix has both vocals and harmonica in the intro (like the "usual" mono remix), the second remix is like the "usual" stereo remix (with only vocals in the intro) but less echo on the vocals. Both has a short intro (count-in)

2 different stereo remixes (both with somewhat weak separation) also apparantly made from the original session tapes. The first remix has short intro (count-in) and slightly different harmonica at places (1.12 and 1.40) as compared to the "usual" stereoremix. The second remix sounds like the usual version but with less echo/reverb on the vocals

A mono remix of take 2, previously available in a stereo remix on "Ultra Rare Trax Vol.1" (among many others) where it has intro and a bit of echo added to the vocals

The two tries at making "fake" stereo mixes as mentioned in Mark Lewisohn's book (8th November 1966). It seems authentic, we clearly hear announcements of "RS1" and "RS2" respectively, but none of the remixes to me seems anything like the version on "A Collection Of Oldies" which according to ML should be one of the two. "RS1" sounds like a mono remix (with no appearent "stereo feel" to my ears at least). "RS2" has parts of the guitar moving from channel to channel in places (could be made by simply turning the stereo balance knob on your equipment) otherwise it sounds like the ordinary mono remix. "A Collection Of Oldies" has high frequences (treble) in one channel and bass in the other, which gives at least to some extent a kind of "stereo separation"

Original stereo remix RS15 (from 10th November 1966) complete with announcement. It seems that the (for many years unavailable) stereo remix (now on "Past Masters Volume 1") is the same version, so only the intro seems to be the new thing here

Sounds like the "usual" stereo remix (only "reverse" stereo and shorter ending). Was included in the "Abbey Road Videoshow" which is probably why it's included here

The same version as released on "Anthology 1" (with a longer ending) but there it was a mono remix. This is stereo (and better sounding, I think)

Maybe THE highlight of this double disc. Totally new. It's amazing how fresh this 1964 outtake sounds some 35 long years later...

Various takes. Take 1 seems to be the same as take 2 but without the heavy reverb (which in my opinion ruins the song). The "edit piece" seems to be unused in any of the versions that we (I) know of. The "low reverb mix(!)" seems to be the same as on "Anthology 2" (where it's called take 2) and also sounds very much like the "Sessions" version (as found best on "Unsurpassed Masters Vol.2", I can hear no obvious differences). Take 20 and 21 are NEW and refreshing though short (still the song itself isn't good, but at least they were trying). Take 22,23 and the "test" take" have been out before (amongst others on "Anthology Plus", and in inferior quiality but with longer intro on "Hodge Podge (Vol.1)"). Forget 'em all, this has both longer intro and better quality

Complete instrumental take from the "Abbey Road Videoshow" soundtrack. It is not take 8 as mentioned on the cover (take 8 was a "false start" found on "Ultimate Collection Vol.3" among others) and it's NOT identical to take 5 (another complete instrumental take found on "Unsurpassed Masters Vol.2" (listen for the small errors in the acoustic guitar at 0.18 (here) and in the beginning of the second verse (there)), and it's not the backing track for the legitimate version either. Some say it's take 4 (which was missing on "Unsurpassed Masters Vol.4" although announced). On the newly released "Hodge Podge Vol.3" (not yet reviewed in these pages) the announcement for take 4 is actually followed by this take, although it's clearly edited in there. Hmmmm...

2 takes. Take 1 is with longer outro but considerably worse sound on "Hodge Podge (Vol.1)". The version on "Unsurpassed Masters Vol.2" is a different stereo remix (sitar in the left channel, it's in the middle here). Seems to be the same remix as on "Anthology 2" but it sounds a bit more "compressed" here. Take 2 has been out before on "Anthology Plus" (and others) but never in such great quality as here

2 takes. Both has been out in worse sound on "Arrive Without Aging" (and more) were take 2 has longer outro including an extra take. Take 2 has also been out on "Acetates" in an original monoremix, and of course is the basis of the severely edited version on "Anthology 2"

From the "Abbey Road Videoshow". Same as the official released version but a different stereo remix with different placement of various instruments and vocals (more is mixed to the centre of the stereo here)

Also from the "Abbey Road Videoshow". This time I can hear no difference when compared to the legitimate version (except for the reverse stereo and shorter ending (and that goes for the version previously out on "Unsurpassed Masters Vol.3" and many others too...)

The rare RM11 from the very early pressings of "Revolver". Talked about for years, but hardly anybody seemed to have heard about it - until now. It has already been bootlegged a number of places. It IS different when compared to the "ordinary" mono remix as well as the stereo remix. There's more and louder effects, the ending is slightly longer and the last notes of the guitar "solo" is missing (some other smaller differences too)

2 takes. Take 7 is RM1 which has been out for years copied from a worn acetate (on "It's Not Too Bad" for one). Here it's from the tape master (including intro). On "It's Not Too Bad" there's another "remix" from the session tape (longer, no echo on the vocals and with the guitar (?) in the right channel at 1.43-1.59 still in the mix). Seems to be the same remix as on "Anthology 2" where it's shorter and without intro (and slightly faster). Take 26 is appearantly a monoremix. Is found copied from the session tape among others on "It's Not Too Bad" where it's longer, with different vocals (and no vocals in the start), with the piano at the end still in the mix and the drums at the end mixed louder

3 takes/versions all take 9 in various stages. The first is the "oboe version" with oboe instead of trumpet. Nice beacause it's rare, but the trumpet sure fits the song much better (is partially included in the "Anthology 2" version). The second version is RM10. As compared to the official mono remix (RM11), it has trumpet at the end, louder flute at 0.24 and trumpet at 1.47 (very low, it's much louder on the stereo remix but missing in RM11). RM9(?) has been released on "Ultra Rare Trax Vol.1" and it has less audible trumpet at 1.05 but louder flute at 0.58-1.05. The "promo single" version of this song has been bootlegged a number of times, but I've discovered that my versions of that all seems to be the legitimate remixes with only the end edited on from the promo single (like on the american "Rarities" vinyl). The last version of "Penny Lane" here seems to be identical to the released stereo remix (except for the reverse stereo). This was also included in the "Abbey Road Videoshow"

As from the "Abbey Road Videoshow". Sounds like the ususal stereo remix (reverse stereo again!) with the "clean" start edited on from a different source (the piano track starts rather suddently at 0.09 - sounding like a bad edit). The start could be edited on from the truly alternate different stereo remix as found on "Ultra Rare Trax Vol.3" (which turns to mono at 0.46-1.14, has Paul's "come on" in the right channel at 2.21 almost mixed out, the orchestra (the last time) starting earlier (so the "on" in "I'd Love To Turn You On" is hardly heard, and just before the piano chord at the very end there's a few seconds were you can hear noise from the studio. A different mix indeed, but not this one, so that's another story....

From the "Abbey Road Videoshow" and again I hear no differences as compared to the usual stereoremix (did I forget the "reverse stereo" and the shorter ending?)

This is from....yes, the "Abbey Road Videoshow". Has been out in a slightly different remix on "Unsurpassed Masters Vol.7" (and more) but here the start is included as well as extra organ at 1.20, screams and tambourine on the very last "See how they run" and two extra handclaps in the last verse. And of course this is a very early version of the legitimate remix lacking backing vocals and horns (as the most remarkable). Portions of this (including John's vocals at the very end) were used for the "Anthology 2" version

Take 9 from the "Abbey Road Videoshow". This has the first part of the song missing. The complete version has been released from the sessiontape on "Ultra Rare Trax Vol.5"

According to the cover notes an original monoremix from 14th October 1968. Has been out before on "Ultra Rare Trax Vol.5" in worse sound. And it has of course been released in various other remixes with and without overdubs (sadly most of which are only out on old vinyl bootlegs). The most noticable (and less different) version is the officially released "Anthology 3" version (rather similar to the "Sessions" version if not identical except for the outro included on "Anthology 3")

The same version as on "Anthology 3" but a different stereoremix. The percussion here is mostly in the left channel, on "Anthology 3" it's mixed to the centre. No big difference at first listen...

The same version as on "Anthology 3" which is edited shorter (includes only 0.00-0.37 and 0.58-1.18 of this 3 minutes+ version. Like "Step Inside Love" this stereoremix has the percussion in the left channel, whereas it's in the centre on "Anthology 3"

Absolutely new. As the 2 tracks above from the "I Will" session

A little snippet of this was included on the "White Album" just before "Revolution 9". This is the complete "song". On "The White Album" only 0.43-1.10 is included, the guitar is in the right channel (as opposed to the middle here) and there's echo added to the vocals

Actually the start is "Rip It Up". Has been out before with longer start on "Celluloid Rock" where it's mono (although it could be the same stereo remix as here). The version on "Anthology 3" is slightly different with longer start, all drums mixed to the centre and the piano solo at 1.02-1.50 mixed way down low. Included in the "Let It Be" movie soundtrack

This is a continuation of the track above but they are separated here. Is found in mono (but originally same stereo remix?) on "Celluloid Rock" where the outro is longer. Included in the "Let It Be" movie soundtrack

Out before with shorter start but longer outro on "Celluloid Rock" (mono but maybe same stereo remix). Released on "Anthology 3" with shorter start and slightly shorter ending, reverb added to the vocals and organ solo and all drums mixed to the centre. Included in the "Let It Be" movie soundtrack

A Medley of "Cannonball/Not Fade Away/Hey Little Girl/Bo Diddley". Has been released before in mono and with shorter start/ending on "File Under Beatles" and "Obladi Oblada" (both vinyl)

From the "Abbey Road Videoshow". Starts with the "acapella" version but the instrumental track turns in about halfway through the song. The last part of the song is the same as officially released on "Abbey Road" but the vocals seems slightly more separated in the stereo here. The complete "acapella" version of course has been released on "Anthology 3" (which seems to be identical to the various bootlegged versions like "Ultra Rare Trax Vol.5"

Not the Beatles song, but just to tell you that that was basically IT. Is this review good, boring or even bad? Did I miss anything? Do you like to read reviews like this one for other bootlegs as well and which ones? Should I turn into stamp collecting instead? Please e-mail your thoughts and comments to peterg@dadlnet.dk


Many thanks to Tsukitaro for the booklet! All comments in the listings by Max Mismetti ( mismetti@netscape.net ).
Review and track-by-track analysis by Peter Gustenhoff peterg@dadlnet.dk

1999 Harald Gernhardt's Beatles Pages. All Rights Reserved.