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Sunday, April 17, 2011

The "Strawberry Fields" Demos

There are many musicians that view hit makers as those uniquely touched by the hand God, and as a result, nothing but pure genius ever sprouts forth from any creative endeavor thereafter. While that may be true in a rare case or two, most of the time greatness comes from hard work. As author Malcolm Gladwell so aptly puts it, it comes from the "10,000 hours" you put in learning your craft.

The Beatles were brilliant in so many ways and as the years go by, we find out just how much so with each passing year. That's why it's so interesting to listen to this demo of John Lennon working out a song that he's particularly noted for - "Strawberry Fields." It's impossible to tell how long it took him to refine the song to the point that we hear it below, but you can hear him struggling with it here.

Of course, once he hit the studio with the song it became a completely different animal. As a comparison, the studio version is posted below.

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Don D said...

What's so remarkable is how much of the song is there in its bones right from the very beginning. The Beatles still represent the highest form of collaboration. Who was responsible for what specific glint of perfection -- each of them as individual musicians, their producers, arrangers, engineers, etc. -- is never really a question. What matters continues to be the results of that luminous force.

Looking back, the true measure of their genius is that the Beatles didn't really have a "sound". They had an energy that was hard to peg. A magic. An expectation. We expected the next song to be as great as the last. We still do.

Colin said...

What distinguishes greatness from anything less than greatness is the deliberate combination of great passion, higher wisdom, self- sustainability, and clear direction. John Lennon is one of the world's greatest examples how these four key aspects of the human psyche are put to work in a stellar way. Never give up on your dreams, folks! Thank you for this post, Bob.

Deshu said...

As far as i am concerned,there is nothing as hard work,its just getting, through, a topic that i don't understand, for that whatever i have to do i will do. That's how my learning process goes.If somebody says to me, that i have to do hard work, then i may fear,as the word 'Hard Work' is sort of an obligation to me.
I won't give up until i fell satisfied.That's how i see things.


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