Recording, mixing: Savoy Truffle, Piggies, Don’t Pass Me By, Good Night

3.00pm, Friday 11 October 1968 (45 years ago)

Studio Two, EMI Studios, Abbey Road
Producer: George Martin
Engineer: Ken Scott

Work continued on Savoy Truffle during this session, with the addition of a saxophone overdub, scored by Chris Thomas.

Between 3pm and 6pm the session musicians were recorded. They were Art Ellefson, Danny Moss and Derek Collins on tenor saxophone, and Ronnie Ross, Harry Klein and Bernard George on baritone.

The session men were playing really well — there’s nothing like a good brass section letting rip — and it sounded fantastic. But having got this really nice sound George turned to Ken Scott and said ‘Right, I want to distort it’. So I had to plug-up two high-gain amplifiers which overloaded and deliberately introduced a lot of distortion, completely tearing the sound to pieces and making it dirty. The musicians came up to the control room to listen to a playback and George said to them ‘Before you listen I’ve got to apologise for what I’ve done to your beautiful sound. Please forgive me — but it’s the way I want it!’ I don’t think they particularly enjoyed hearing their magnificent sound screwed up quite so much but they realised that this was what George wanted, and that it was their job to provide it.
Brian Gibson, technical engineer
The Complete Beatles Recording Sessions, Mark Lewisohn

Savoy Truffle was finally completed on 14 October 1968, on the final day of recording for the White Album.

From 6pm to midnight a mixing session took place in the control room of Studio Two. Each of the songs was either written or sung by George Harrison or Ringo Starr.

It began with four mono mixes of Piggies, one of Don’t Pass Me By, and two of Good Night. Three stereo mixes of Piggies were then made, followed by one apiece of Don’t Pass Me By and Good Night.

Don’t Pass Me By also had an edit which added a few tinkling piano notes to the beginning. Both mono and stereo mixes of the song were crossfaded with a tape of violinist Jack Fallon playing along to the song, although the mixes used different parts of this overdub.

Leave a reply