ROIO of the Week
[Recordings of Indeterminate Origin]

"No… no… no… I refuse… Elton's gonna die young. I'm gonna be a 90-year-old guru…"
- John Lennon, somewhere in Los Angeles while recording the Rock & Roll album with Phil Spector in October 1973.

"As far as the album is concerned, we didn’t really like doing Chuck Berry and Larry Williams. I mean, there was no stamp of personality on it. We even did ‘Be My Baby’. It was ridiculous, because we didn’t believe it. The Rock ‘N’ Roll album was really… it was good, but it was a mish-mash. It wasn’t the best of John Lennon."
- Phil Spector talking to Rolling Stone, Nov 9, 2000.




Click on the panels to download artwork

John Lennon
You Should'a Been There: Rock 'n' Roll Sessions [MBE/2004 4-Disc set]

Newsweek reported two weeks ago that since John Lennon died, his album sales have been in decline. The Rock ‘N’ Roll album remastered and reissued at the end of 2004 managed to sell 32,000 copies while his best selling Imagine album sold 412,000 copies over the past 15 years. Lennon died December 8, 1980, 25 years ago.

We’d like to remember him this way. Here in a session in Los Angeles in October, 1973 produced by the legendary and crazed Phil Spector and surrounded by a wall of musicians that included Hal Blaine, Nino Tempo, Jose Feliciano, Leon Russell, Bobby Keys, Jim Keltner, Jesse Ed Davis, Klaus Voorman, Barry Mann, Larry Carlton and many more, Lennon was playing rock ‘n’ roll music.

The studio chatter included in track 2 shows how much effect the vodka had on John and the Courvoisier brandy on Spector. In May Pang’s book, Loving John, she described the sessions as wild with celebrities walking in and out of the studio. At one point, Spector drew his pistol and took a shot at the ceiling. Lennon had thought the sidearm was just for effect but later Beatles gofer Mal Evans produced the bullet.

"I’ve got the bullet," he told us.

"What bullet?" asked John.

[Mal] Evans showed him the bullet, which had lodged in the roof of the Record Plant. John was astonished. "I think it’s a real fuckin’ bullet!"

The Rock ‘n’ Roll album was supposed to be John’s way of relaxing after so many years fighting for social causes. He wanted to make an album of the songs he grew up with and chose Phil Spector who was there making those great songs. Unfortunately, without a strong minder, the sessions dragged from 1973 to 1974 until the album was left on the shelf while Lennon worked on Walls And Bridges. Rock ‘N’ Roll was only reassembled and released in February 1975.

These sessions for Rock ‘N’ Roll showed a glimpse of Lennon seldom seen, not saintly or sanitized but raw like the music he loved. It’s the anger and pain of adolescence that cannot be heard in all those ‘50s rock ‘n’ roll records that only show the fun side but neglected the struggle to get the music heard. Give a listen to Track 3, Just Because, which has never been released in this form. The released version is just too phoney to be worthy.

Truly, you should’a been there.

- The Little Chicken

Click on the highlighted tracks to download the MP3s (these are high quality, stereo MP3s - sample rate of 192 kibit/s).

These tracks are no longer available for download. Kindly email us at singbigo@singnet.com.sg if you want to download these tracks at a later time.

 
Track 01 Be My Baby (7.9MB)
Track 02 In The Studio Pt 1+
Track 03 Just Because (8.5MB)
Track 04 You Can’t Catch Me (5.5MB)
Track 05 Sweet Little Sixteen (6.3MB)
Track 06 Bony Moronie (5.4MB)
Track 07 Medley: Rip It Up/ Ready Teddy (2.1MB)
Track 08 Ain’t That A Shame (3.5MB)
Track 09 Peggy Sue (2.8MB)
Track 10 In The Studio Pt 2+
Track 11 Angel Baby*
Track 12 Since My Baby Left Me*
Track 13 To Know Her Is To Love Her*
Track 14 Medley: Bring It On Home To Me/ Send Me Some Lovin’+
Track 15 When In Doubt, Fuck It+
Track 16 Be My Baby [alternate] (8.5MB)
Track 17 Here We Go Again [demo] (4.0MB)
Track 18 Here We Go Again*

* These tracks are omitted as they appear on the official release Menlove Avenue.



+ These tracks are omitted as they appear on the official release John Lennon Anthology boxset
.


Click here to order Menlove Avenue.

Click here to order John Lennon Anthology boxset.





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