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Old Nov 06, 2011, 09:02 AM   #1
hibgal
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Default The Demo Thread - John Lennon's Unreleased Songs

John Lennon was an extremely prolific songwriter and composer. Just look at the number of singles and albums he made with The Beatles as well as a solo artist. That is not all. Besides the many songs that were recorded exists a slew of demo tapes of songs, which were either shelved or went through such a transformation they are hardly recognizable. Some were recorded in the studio and abandoned, while others never got further than John's cassette player.

Some of us thought it would be fun to collect together all John's demos in one spot, both the obscure and the more well known, from with his Beatles days onward.

Please note: Demos of song that were released by The Beatles are not part of this thread. It's meant to concentrate on songs of John's solo career or songs that were composed during John's time with The Beatles but not released by them. A preference is given to songs that ended at the demo stage, unless there's a specific reason to include them.
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Old Nov 06, 2011, 09:07 AM   #2
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Default Everyone Had A Hard Year

Okay, I'm starting this off with Everyone Had A Hard Year. Sounds familiar? Not surprising since part of this song was transformed into the middle eight of I've Got A Feeling, one of the highlights of the Let It Be album. First attempt to record it was during the Get Back sessions. The original was written in C, while the Beatles recorded it in A. I'm including it here because John's original is quite different from what the song finally became.

Here's one demo of this song, if I'm not wrong it's the home demo:



The lyrics:

Everyone had a hard year
Everyone had a good time
Everyone had the boot in
Everyone saw the sun shine

Everyone had a hard year
Everyone let their hair down
Everyone pulled their socks up
Everyone put their feet down

Everyone had a hard year
Everyone put their feet up
Everyone had a face-lift
Everone had a new cup

Everyone, everyone
Everyone, everyone
Everyone, everyone

Everyone had a hard year
Everyone had a good time
Everyone had the boot in
Everyone saw the sun shine

Everyone had a hard year
Everyone let their hair down
Everyone pulled their socks up
Everyone put their feet down

Everyone had a good time
Everyone put their feet up
Everyone had a wrong time
Everyone had a wrong time


Several sources are available for this song, among them the Lost Lennon Tapes, Archives and The Beatles 1968 Demos.
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Old Nov 06, 2011, 09:17 AM   #3
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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hpFwqUoO1JA
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Old Nov 06, 2011, 09:41 AM   #4
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Here's a classic. Probably the most talked-about demo of an unreleased Lennon song. Eerily beautiful... as are so many of John's Dakota demos.

For those who don't know, the Threetles were considering using this demo for their third song, after Free as a Bird and Real Love. They started a recording, but the project was scrapped for many reasons. Rumors persist to this day that Paul may one day re-record it himself.

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Old Nov 06, 2011, 09:49 AM   #5
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Here's my all-time favorite John demo. It was done during the Mind Games era, and is generally considered to be an early version of You Are Here. So, even though it was technically released, I think this demo is significantly different from the final version that it qualifies for this thread:

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Old Nov 06, 2011, 10:04 AM   #6
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Lightbulb Post Title

Please put the song title in the post's Title field (available through Go Advanced) when posting a demo. Thanks!
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Old Nov 06, 2011, 10:14 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Maia 66 View Post
Here's a classic. Probably the most talked-about demo of an unreleased Lennon song. Eerily beautiful... as are so many of John's Dakota demos.

For those who don't know, the Threetles were considering using this demo for their third song, after Free as a Bird and Real Love. They started a recording, but the project was scrapped for many reasons. Rumors persist to this day that Paul may one day re-record it himself.
It's definitively my favourite demo-song and I never really understood why it wasn't polished and finished by the Threetles. I know about the rumours about a possible release, but it's ages ago, so I don't really believe in them anymore. Though, it's a shame, I love this song

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Old Nov 06, 2011, 10:20 AM   #8
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Default I'm In Love

This was a demo John made in July, 1963 but it never manifested itself on any Beatles album. It's such a beautiful song and was given to The Fourmost afterward.




I've got something to tell you , I'm in love,
I've been longing to tell you, I'm in love,
You'll believe me, when I tell you, I'm in love with you.
You're my kind of girl,
you make me feel pround,
you make me want to shout aloud,
yes, I,m telling all my friends, I'm in love.
Ev'ry night I can't sleep, thinking of you,
and ev'ry little thing that you do,
yes, I'm telling all my friends, I,m in love.
Oh yeh, I'm sittin' on the top of the world,
I'm in love with a wonderful girl,
and I never felt so good befopre,
if this is love, give me more, more, more.
Ev'ry night I can't sleep, thinking of you,
and ev'ry little thing that you do,
yes, I'm telling all my friends, I,m in love.
Yes, I'm telling all my friends, I'm in love, in love.
Yes, I'm telling all my friends, I'm in love.

Could it be about Cyn?
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Old Nov 06, 2011, 10:21 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Maia 66 View Post
Here's a classic. Probably the most talked-about demo of an unreleased Lennon song. Eerily beautiful... as are so many of John's Dakota demos.

For those who don't know, the Threetles were considering using this demo for their third song, after Free as a Bird and Real Love. They started a recording, but the project was scrapped for many reasons. Rumors persist to this day that Paul may one day re-record it himself.

"Now And Then" would have been a masterpiece. I believe it was just recorded by a band and I'm going to post that version in the covers thread if someone hasn't already.
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Old Nov 06, 2011, 10:22 AM   #10
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"Say It Again" is amazing!!!!!
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Old Nov 06, 2011, 10:50 AM   #11
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Default The Maharishi Song

Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle_Albert View Post
This one is quite funny. It's somewhere between a rap, a ballad and a spoken piece but it sure shows what John thought of the Maharishi!

John: Well let me tell you something
About the Maharishi camp, in Rishikesh.
There were one or two attractive women there,
But mainly, looked like, ya know, school teachers or somet'n.
And the whole damn camp was spyin' on the ones in the bathing suits.
And they're supposed to be meditatin'.

And there's this cowboy there called Tom
Who plays cowboys on T.V.
And my did the beatle-wives go for him in a big way.
I wonder what it was
It was his tight leather belt, his jeans, and his dumb eyes.
They seem to love dumb eyes

Yoko: Why ?

John: 'cause all they see is dumb eyes

Yoko: What's wrong with his eye? You have this eye.

John: Me. I took it for real.
I wrote 600 songs - about how I feel.
I felt like dying, and crying, and commiting suicide,
But I felt creative
And I said: "What the hell's this got to do
with what that silly little man's
talking about?"
But he did charm me in a way because he was funny
Sort of cuddly, like a sort of - you know...

Yoko: Like a teddy bear

John: ..little daddy with a beard
Telling stories of heaven as if he knew.
You could never pin him down
But he often spread rumors through his right hand man
Who used to be with the CIA and told about the planes he saved.

How Maharishi came through the storm - on a plane.
And the pilot was gettin' worried they couldn't land.
When Maharishi looked up and with one foul look
According to the man who works for him,
Everything was OK and they landed!
After that I thought, lies.
But who was that woman who looks like Jean Symmonds
Who keeps going to him for private interviews?
She must have been about 40 - 45.
Kept telling about her husband 'cause he wasn't there.
All the time
I was tryin' to get a private audience with the Maharishi
And he kept refusing.
I know only one thing. He must've had some of his own.
It must've been that little Indian piece.
She came with the taylor and could sit at his feet
And that was one in 500.
The rest had to wait like good American people,
In line to see the master walking on the petals
Who lived in a million dollar stecketo house
Overlooking the Himalayas.
He looked holy.

Yoko: But he was a sex maniac.

John: I couldn't say that, but he certainly wasn't...

Yoko: ...Holy

John: In the true sense of the word that is.


Besides Youtube, you can also find it on the Christmas Present bootleg as well as the Lost Lennon Tape and the 1968 demos.
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Old Nov 06, 2011, 11:09 AM   #12
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I actually never heard that one Uncle Albert! Thank you for sharing; I thought it was fantastic. I love when John would do that talk-singing story stuff. Love it.

And actually Yoko doesn't offend this demo at all. Not at all.
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Old Nov 06, 2011, 12:40 PM   #13
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Default Now and Then

Quote:
Originally Posted by Maia 66 View Post
For those who don't know, the Threetles were considering using this demo for their third song, after Free as a Bird and Real Love. They started a recording, but the project was scrapped for many reasons. Rumors persist to this day that Paul may one day re-record it himself.
Yeah, those rumors resurface over and over again. From what I understand it was abandoned as a joint Beatles project mainly because the song's too unfinished. Not that the so-so quality of John's demo helps.

Btw, this song is also known as I Don't Want To Lose You and Miss You, just to keep the demos straight.
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Old Nov 06, 2011, 12:59 PM   #14
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Default Anyone care to speculate who "Now and Then" was about?

What I find interesting is that he wrote "For Paul" on those cassettes.


So much mystery.....
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Old Nov 06, 2011, 04:23 PM   #15
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Anyone care to speculate who "Now and Then" was about?

What I find interesting is that he wrote "For Paul" on those cassettes.
Yes, I've always wondered about that... Maybe it's the skeptic in me, but I've always thought that maybe it was Yoko who wrote "For Paul" since she's the one who gave him the tape.

But when he sings "now and then, I miss you" (which is the emotional crux of the song), it sure feels like he's singing to Paul. However, when he sings the other verses, he says "sweet darling," which makes me think it is about Yoko. Maybe the whole "I miss you" theme referred to her time working in the office at Studio One.

Who knows for sure, though... you're right, there's so much mystery.
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Old Nov 06, 2011, 04:26 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Apple Scruff View Post
This was a demo John made in July, 1963 but it never manifested itself on any Beatles album. It's such a beautiful song and was given to The Fourmost afterward.
I love I'm in Love... such a simple song, but also undeniably charming!
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Old Nov 06, 2011, 04:42 PM   #17
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Default Sally and Billy



Here's what my friend Happy Nat has to say about this demo:

Quote:
“Sally and Billy” is a song John never got around to finishing. It was written in the summer of 1970 during the Imagine sessions, but was scrapped. It apparently stayed with him over the years, as the piano demo of it featured here was recorded at his Dakota residence years later, in the late 1970s. The lyrics, I understand, were revised sometime around 1976. Some have surmised that ‘Sally’ and ‘Billy’ might really be referring to a certain ‘Linda and Paul,’ but I don’t personally think this is true.

This demo features only John’s rhythm box, his vocal and piano accompaniment. He initiates the recording with a “take 3″ announcement. The ending is abrupt as the source tape cuts off (judging by his repeats of the closing line, he was likely thinking it would end up as a fade-out here on the finalized version anyway).
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Old Nov 07, 2011, 03:08 AM   #18
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by the way friends of Dorothy about his homosexual feeling

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R0f3L7EdWYE
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Old Nov 07, 2011, 07:24 AM   #19
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Default She's a Friend of Dorothy

Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle_Albert View Post
by the way friends of Dorothy about his homosexual feeling

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R0f3L7EdWYE
No doubt about it, I'm an innocent. Before Unca A's post I had no idea a Friend of Dorothy was code for gay/lesbian!

For more of this subject, see this wiki entry.

Since back in the 70's a FOD was a gay man, here are John's - obviously knowing this - tongue in cheek lyrics about a female FOD:

Come to the underground
Sure know her way around
TV pretty elegant
Art deco decadent
Hot lips and no shame
All fun and no game

She is a friend of Dorothy's
She is a friend of
A friend of Dorothy's - she shows it
A friend of Dorothy's - I know it
A friend of Dorothy's - who is she?
Whoever she is

Queen of the discotheques
Sheik of Arabesque
France jeans and nasty boots
Red hair and yellow rood
Frederick to Hollywood
Forty-second and bloody good

She is a friend of Dorothy's
She is a friend indeed
A friend of Dorothy's - I know it
A friend of Dorothy's - she shows it it
A friend of Dorothy's - who is she?
Whoever she is

Trust in God and she will provide
She keep you satisfied
Ooo ooo ooo
She is a friend of Dorothy's
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Old Nov 07, 2011, 05:26 PM   #20
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by the way friends of Dorothy about his homosexual feeling
I beg to differ. There's nothing in the song that makes it seem like he's talking about his own feelings... it's written in 3rd person. It sounds like he's singing about a gay man (who may possibly be a transvestite)... a '70s disco scenester.

Quote:
France jeans and nasty boots
Red hair and yellow rood
Frederick to Hollywood
Forty-second and bloody good
The last line sounds like he may be a prostitute... back in the '70s, before they cleaned up Midtown Manhattan, 42nd Street was a pretty unsavory area of town.

And hib... I think he's talking about a male, not a female... some FODs refer to each other as "she"... especially, if s/he's a transvestite. (Born and raised in the West Hollywood area of L.A., aka FOD Central. )
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