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Let It Be
20 December 2013
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ScrambledEggs
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acmac said

That leads to Let It Be… Naked. This is perhaps the one subject I will always be against the Beatles. It was an unnecessary and highly profitable Paul thingy, and I can't help but ask (with all my love and adoration for Paul), what the hell was he thinking? The original Let It Be was and remains the real thing, and even if John came back from the dead to say that the Naked version was closer to "the original artistic idea the band had for the album", I would still hate it. The Beatles come before Paul for me. Even the way he arranged the order of the songs annoys me. 

I don't understand all the hostility toward "Naked." I'm a relatively new fan, so I first heard both LIB and Naked at the same time, and I fiercely prefer the latter, and am so, so glad it exists. It doesn't erase the original for all of you who prefer that, so what's the problem? We can all pick the one we like. 

I didn't know about the "LAWR" controversy when I first heard the song (my first Beatles album was the Blue Album) and I immediately hated all the soppy strings. I felt there was a good song in there somewhere, but it was smothered. It's not that the string arrangement is BAD; it's just totally wrong for the song. Which I don't BLAME Spector for -- he was hired to do a tough job and he just did his Spector thing.

As for Paul initially using a modified version of Spektor's arrangement for his tours: I don't think that means he didn't hate it. In fact it might well have FUELED the hate, as he probably did it because he felt he was obligated to give the audience the version they were used to.

I'm sorry if I gave you to impression that I think it's wrong to like the Naked version, it was the least of my intentions. What I wanted to do was state my own opinion and that is all.

As for the strings, they covered a lot of off-key bass, and it was one of the only ways to accomplish that. That doesn't necessarily mean they they make the song better, but it certainly does mean it makes it musically correct. Off-key instruments ruin a song more than adding on strings. The Naked version of the song wasn't much better anyway, it just corrected the off-key tones in a different and modern way.

20 December 2013
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ScrambledEggs
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And to add on, I agree with every word meanmistermustard said. Couldn't have put it better myself.

20 December 2013
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acmac
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meanmistermustard said

Paul had time to veto Spector's Let It Be but never did until it was far too late (its detailed in 'You Never Give Me Your Money: The Battle For The Soul' by Peter Doggett) Of The Beatles yet has bitched about it ever since. Sorry Paul but it was your own fault so you don't get my sympathy. 

Yeah, I was surprised to read that. I wish Doggett had provided a source for that, but still, I trust him. I do wonder why the legal court found the "LAWR" problem a point in Paul's favor, though. Didn't they cite that in their ruling? Or am I remembering that wrong?

Anyway, I still have a little sympathy for Paul, as I think his aversion to the arrangement is perfectly genuine (and I second that emotion). Since he was spiraling toward a nervous breakdown at the time, I think it's plausible he initially had some sort of "Sure, do what you want, what does it matter, WHAT DOES ANYTHING MATTER" reaction, and then later was like "Wait a minute, I HATE this." None of which makes it Spector's or John's or Klein's fault. 

 

20 December 2013
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Whatever anyone thinks of what Spector did to TLAWR its far superior to the utter embarrassing piece of cheesy shit Paul remade it into for Give My Regards To Broad Street. That crime against music should never be forgotten.  

"Well, probably we'll sell less records, less people'll go to see the film, we'll write less songs, and we'll all die of failure" (John Lennon 8/64)
20 December 2013
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Bungalow Bob
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I happen to like pretty much everything by the Beatles, from the unhinged "Wild Honey Pie," to the semi-schmaltzy "Long And Winding Road." But this version of the LAWR, with its lounge-lizard-y, smooth jazz sax intro is truly awful. I vaguely remember the release of "Give My Regards To Broad Street," only as one of the first Paul McCartney albums that I had no interest in purchasing.

I like the original "Let it Be" album. The Phil Specter arrangements don't bother me. I think it is not that far from a great album. They should have added "Don't Let Me Down," "Old Brown Shoe," and "The Ballad Of John And Yoko"… and Ringo should have been given a tune. "It Don't Come Easy" would have been a nice addition.

20 December 2013
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Oh good night yes, MMM, that rendition is just excruciating. The whole Broadstreet thing was such an epic fail on Paul's part.

ScrambledEggs said:

As for the stings, they covered a lot of off-key bass, and it was one of the only ways to accomplish that. That doesn't necessarily mean they they make the song better, but it certainly does mean it makes it musically correct. Off-key instruments ruin a song more than adding on strings. The Naked version of the song wasn't much better anyway, it just corrected the off-key tones in a different and modern way.

Couldn't they have overdubbed the bass? Again, I'm not saying Spector did anything wrong; he was hired and he did his thing. But my personal taste loathes it, and apparently it put a bee in Paul's bonnet and hey, they were his songs so he's allowed.

To me, the Naked version is MILES better! No syrupy strings and the simple keyboard interlude make for a gentler, more understated song -- which is important because the lyrics are a little over-the-top. Also, no awful "whoa whoa whoa" on the end, which is worth the price of admission in and of itself. As for the other songs, sometimes I prefer the Naked ones, sometimes not. I think it's nice to have the option.

I just don't get the "money-grab and ego trip for Paul which he had no business doing" attitude. If the situation had been reversed, and John had decided "You know, I was never quite satisfied with the 'Strawberry Fields' or 'Lucy' or 'Across The Universe' recordings. I'm gonna dig up some alternate takes and play around with them and add a modern touch here or there -- and maybe have a crack at 'Long and Winding' and 'O-Bla-Di' [or whatever] while I'm at it" then my reaction would have been the same: "Cool, more Beatles options!" They wouldn't replace the original versions, and if I didn't like them, well, I wouldn't have to listen to them. Simple as that.

20 December 2013
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ScrambledEggs
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acmac said
Oh good night yes, MMM, that rendition is just excruciating. The whole Broadstreet thing was such an epic fail on Paul's part.

ScrambledEggs said:

As for the stings, they covered a lot of off-key bass, and it was one of the only ways to accomplish that. That doesn't necessarily mean they they make the song better, but it certainly does mean it makes it musically correct. Off-key instruments ruin a song more than adding on strings. The Naked version of the song wasn't much better anyway, it just corrected the off-key tones in a different and modern way.

Couldn't they have overdubbed the bass? Again, I'm not saying Spector did anything wrong; he was hired and he did his thing. But my personal taste loathes it, and apparently it put a bee in Paul's bonnet and hey, they were his songs so he's allowed.

To me, the Naked version is MILES better! No syrupy strings and the simple keyboard interlude make for a gentler, more understated song -- which is important because the lyrics are a little over-the-top. Also, no awful "whoa whoa whoa" on the end, which is worth the price of admission in and of itself. As for the other songs, sometimes I prefer the Naked ones, sometimes not. I think it's nice to have the option.

I just don't get the "money-grab and ego trip for Paul which he had no business doing" attitude. If the situation had been reversed, and John had decided "You know, I was never quite satisfied with the 'Strawberry Fields' or 'Lucy' or 'Across The Universe' recordings. I'm gonna dig up some alternate takes and play around with them and add a modern touch here or there -- and maybe have a crack at 'Long and Winding' and 'O-Bla-Di' [or whatever] while I'm at it" then my reaction would have been the same: "Cool, more Beatles options!" They wouldn't replace the original versions, and if I didn't like them, well, I wouldn't have to listen to them. Simple as that.

Valid points!

As for overdubbing, I suppose if they could have done it, they would have. In the original The Long And Winging Road, there are still parts when off-key bass can be heard. I honestly have no idea, I was trying to find reasonable reasons for having the syrupy strings on the song, as well as share some thoughts I have read sometime somewhere.

I guess all of it gets summed up in the end to the taste preferences. 

But it wasn't only Paul who went on those occasional ego trips, all four of them did it. I just believe that the Naked album was very unnecessary, especially after all those years, and I don't think it's a bad album. Just unnecessary, but I suppose I'd try to make as much profit as possible from anything as well. 

"Cool, more Beatles options!" would always be my reaction as well. :)

20 December 2013
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Bungalow Bob said
I happen to like pretty much everything by the Beatles, from the unhinged "Wild Honey Pie," to the semi-schmaltzy "Long And Winding Road." But this version of the LAWR, with its lounge-lizard-y, smooth jazz sax intro is truly awful. I vaguely remember the release of "Give My Regards To Broad Street," only as one of the first Paul McCartney albums that I had no interest in purchasing.

I like the original "Let it Be" album. The Phil Specter arrangements don't bother me. I think it is not that far from a great album. They should have added "Don't Let Me Down," "Old Brown Shoe," and "The Ballad Of John And Yoko"… and Ringo should have been given a tune. "It Don't Come Easy" would have been a nice addition.

I love the smooth jazz version of Long and Winding Road.  In fact, I play that CD a lot.

"This Beatles talk bores me to death." --John Lennon

20 December 2013
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I may have commented before ages ago, but I'm not sure so I'll throw my two cents in.

I own "Let it Be" and the "Naked" version.  Although I love both, I will always strongly prefer the Naked version of "The Long And Winding Road".  I respect that Paul didn't want it produced that way and it was done without his permission, and the way he wanted it is better.  Fuck that "wall of sound" it almost ruins the song.  Let it Be was supposed to be a raw album, and after Spector did what he did (yes I agree, he was only doing his job) he totally changed it.  It would have been fine without all the Bells and Whistles…  which in my opinion, Naked proves.

The song "Let it Be" is almost better for me on the Naked version… except for George's solo.  I am so disappointed that it is different, because the original is way better.

"Across The Universe" is also WAY better.  Just John and his acoustic is enough.  heart

 

The original "Let it Be" has all the studio chatter…   I do miss that with the Naked version.

"Please don't bring your banjo back, I know where it's been..  I wasn't hardly gone a day, when it became the scene..  Banjos!  Banjos!  All the time, I can't forget that tune..  and if I ever see another banjo, I'm going out and buy a big balloon!"

 

20 December 2013
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acmac said

meanmistermustard said
Paul had time to veto Spector's Let It Be but never did until it was far too late (its detailed in 'You Never Give Me Your Money: The Battle For The Soul' by Peter Doggett) Of The Beatles yet has bitched about it ever since. Sorry Paul but it was your own fault so you don't get my sympathy. 

Yeah, I was surprised to read that. I wish Doggett had provided a source for that, but still, I trust him. I do wonder why the legal court found the "LAWR" problem a point in Paul's favor, though. Didn't they cite that in their ruling? Or am I remembering that wrong?

Anyway, I still have a little sympathy for Paul, as I think his aversion to the arrangement is perfectly genuine (and I second that emotion). Since he was spiraling toward a nervous breakdown at the time, I think it's plausible he initially had some sort of "Sure, do what you want, what does it matter, WHAT DOES ANYTHING MATTER" reaction, and then later was like "Wait a minute, I HATE this." None of which makes it Spector's or John's or Klein's fault. 

 

At the same time however Paul was insisting on getting McCartney released before Let It Be and threw Ringo out when he was sent over to ease the tensions. What better way to hold everything up and get his way than refuse to sanction the release; maybe Paul didn't raise objection and veto the album in exchange for his debut LP coming out before Let It Be.

"Well, probably we'll sell less records, less people'll go to see the film, we'll write less songs, and we'll all die of failure" (John Lennon 8/64)
20 December 2013
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acmac
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meanmistermustard said 

At the same time however Paul was insisting on getting McCartney released before Let It Be and threw Ringo out when he was sent over to ease the tensions. What better way to hold everything up and get his way than refuse to sanction the release; maybe Paul didn't raise objection and veto the album in exchange for his debut LP coming out before Let It Be.

I could maybe buy that if Paul hadn't proved he STILL had a bee in his bonnet about LAWR thirty years later. I just don't buy the monetary-motivation theory. 

And wasn't McCartney scheduled to come out first, but the others wanted to push it back in favor of LIB (which was perfectly practical of them, to make it coincide with the movie release, etc.)? I think it was just the last straw for Paul, considering everything else that was going on and how he (understandably) felt ganged-up-upon. He shouldn't have taken it out on poor Ringo, though.

I guess I'm just wary (and weary) of the tendency to assign cold-and-calculating motives to any unappealing action of Paul's. He's a person with feelings who sometimes just loses his shit, like anybody else.

 

20 December 2013
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acmac said

I guess I'm just wary (and weary) of the tendency to assign cold-and-calculating motives to any unappealing action of Paul's. He's a person with feelings who sometimes just loses his shit, like anybody else.

 

Well said.  THANK you.  heart

"Please don't bring your banjo back, I know where it's been..  I wasn't hardly gone a day, when it became the scene..  Banjos!  Banjos!  All the time, I can't forget that tune..  and if I ever see another banjo, I'm going out and buy a big balloon!"

 

20 December 2013
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If there was a version of Paul playing The Long And Winding Road acoustically on a piano just after he wrote it, right there at his farm in Scotland, it would have been the best version of them all!

20 December 2013
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mr. Sun king coming together said
I know this album gets a lot of dislikers, but I love it. I love the Loose Attitude of it. What About You

It was the first album I ever bought – so has a major place in my love of music.  We got our first record player the week I bought it and it had just been released a few weeks prior.  I had heard some of the music on the radio and seen some clips on TV (I think they were from the rooftop concert), loved Get Back – and that was it.

Oh, and I don't buy into most theories on Long and Winding Road as noted in some of my other posts; I think Paul was just miffed at not being involved rather than hating the mix – the Broad Street version is just as schmaltzy.

20 December 2013
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trcanberra said

mr. Sun king coming together said
I know this album gets a lot of dislikers, but I love it. I love the Loose Attitude of it. What About You

It was the first album I ever bought – so has a major place in my love of music.  We got our first record player the week I bought it and it had just been released a few weeks prior.  I had heard some of the music on the radio and seen some clips on TV (I think they were from the rooftop concert), loved Get Back – and that was it.

Oh, and I don't buy into most theories on Long and Winding Road as noted in some of my other posts; I think Paul was just miffed at not being involved rather than hating the mix – the Broad Street version is just as schmaltzy.

You really think it was all because of spite??  Wow.  

"Please don't bring your banjo back, I know where it's been..  I wasn't hardly gone a day, when it became the scene..  Banjos!  Banjos!  All the time, I can't forget that tune..  and if I ever see another banjo, I'm going out and buy a big balloon!"

 

20 December 2013
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meanmistermustard said
Whatever anyone thinks of what Spector did to TLAWR its far superior to the utter embarrassing piece of cheesy shit Paul remade it into for Give My Regards To Broad Street. That crime against music should never be forgotten.  

 

Exactly, I shudder to even think of GMRTBS… George summed it up brilliantly, I think

 

Although I do like "No More Lonely Nights" a-hard-days-night-paul-7

INTROVERTS UNITE! Separately.....In your own homes.----Make Love, Not Wardrobes!
20 December 2013
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acmac said

meanmistermustard said 

At the same time however Paul was insisting on getting McCartney released before Let It Be and threw Ringo out when he was sent over to ease the tensions. What better way to hold everything up and get his way than refuse to sanction the release; maybe Paul didn't raise objection and veto the album in exchange for his debut LP coming out before Let It Be.

I could maybe buy that if Paul hadn't proved he STILL had a bee in his bonnet about LAWR thirty years later. I just don't buy the monetary-motivation theory. 

And wasn't McCartney scheduled to come out first, but the others wanted to push it back in favor of LIB (which was perfectly practical of them, to make it coincide with the movie release, etc.)? I think it was just the last straw for Paul, considering everything else that was going on and how he (understandably) felt ganged-up-upon. He shouldn't have taken it out on poor Ringo, though.

I guess I'm just wary (and weary) of the tendency to assign cold-and-calculating motives to any unappealing action of Paul's. He's a person with feelings who sometimes just loses his shit, like anybody else.

Yes, my point being that if Paul was capable of saying "get stuffed" when Apple wanted to move the previously agreed date of McCartney, he was more than capable of saying "no, that's not what i want" to Apple in regards to the production on The Long And Winding Road. That he did nothing and yet then got in the hump over it when it was too late therefore reflects badly on him. So maybe peace broke out by Paul agreeing to not veto the song (despite not being happy with it) and Apple agreeing to let the previously agreed April date for McCartney stand. Totally conjecture on my part.

Found this Paul quote first published in the Evening Standard in April in Joe's entry for the song:

The album was finished a year ago, but a few months ago American record producer Phil Spector was called in by John Lennon to tidy up some of the tracks. But a few weeks ago, I was send a re-mixed version of my song The Long And Winding Road, with harps, horns, an orchestra and women's choir added. No one had asked me what I thought. I couldn't believe it. I would never have female voices on a Beatles record. The record came with a note from Allen Klein saying he thought the changes were necessary. I don't blame Phil Spector for doing it but it just goes to show that it's no good me sitting here thinking I'm in control because obviously I'm not. Anyway I've sent Klein a letter asking for some of the things to be altered, but I haven't received an answer yet. 

Well we now know that Paul was given fair warning of the changes so thats nonsense and he says "I would never have female voices on a Beatles record." which is also total bullshit. Never mind Linda doing backing vocals on Let It Be or Yoko and Pattie on Birthday, how about Paul dragging in two female fans off the street to warble out of tune on Across The Universe

 

ASJ, totally agree about No More Lonely Nights being the only positive from Give My Regards To Broadstreet, it''s one of my favourite Paul song's.

"Well, probably we'll sell less records, less people'll go to see the film, we'll write less songs, and we'll all die of failure" (John Lennon 8/64)
21 December 2013
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meanmistermustard said 

Yes, my point being that if Paul was capable of saying "get stuffed" when Apple wanted to move the previously agreed date of McCartney, he was more than capable of saying "no, that's not what i want" to Apple in regards to the production on The Long And Winding Road.

Hmm, that is not how depression works, actually. You may as well say that because John was sometimes capable of being sweet and kind, then he has zero excuse for ever being nasty and mean.

meanmistermustard said 

So maybe peace broke out by Paul agreeing to not veto the song (despite not being happy with it) and Apple agreeing to let the previously agreed April date for McCartney stand.

Sure, maybe. But how does that reflect badly on Paul, exactly? Would you also say that because Paul reluctantly signed some power over to Klein in order to placate the others, that he later had no business deciding he wanted to sever ties with him? Even if Paul deliberately refrained from intervening on LAWR ("despite not being happy with it") so as to… have a bargaining chip later (I think that's what you're saying?), how does that mean Paul sucks for eventually releasing a version that he did like, thirty years later?

meanmistermustard said

The album was finished a year ago, but a few months ago American record producer Phil Spector was called in by John Lennon to tidy up some of the tracks. But a few weeks ago, I was send a re-mixed version of my song The Long And Winding Road, with harps, horns, an orchestra and women's choir added. No one had asked me what I thought. I couldn't believe it. I would never have female voices on a Beatles record. The record came with a note from Allen Klein saying he thought the changes were necessary. I don't blame Phil Spector for doing it but it just goes to show that it's no good me sitting here thinking I'm in control because obviously I'm not. Anyway I've sent Klein a letter asking for some of the things to be altered, but I haven't received an answer yet. Well we now know that Paul was given fair warning of the changes so thats nonsense and he says "I would never have female voices on a Beatles record." which is also total bullshit. Never mind Linda doing backing vocals on Let It Be or Yoko and Pattie on Birthday, how about Paul dragging in two female fans off the street to warble out of tune on Across The Universe

I absolutely agree that Paul was being duplicitous with the "No one had asked me what I thought" story. John and Klein (and maybe George?) were also duplicitous when shit got real and they all went to court. But again, I don't see how that means Paul should have never dared to do Naked. And the quibbling over the "female voices" has always struck me as absurd; there is clearly a world of difference between the occasional backup vocal (some of which he might have thought of as placeholders, anyway) and a giant warbling choir. He should probably have said "I would never have put huge choral backup vocals on "Let It Be," but he didn't, he was kinda vague. Big deal.

Anyway, it's clear we've reached an impasse, so I'm happy to shake hands and agree to disagree. :)

21 December 2013
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LongHairedLady said

trcanberra said

mr. Sun king coming together said
I know this album gets a lot of dislikers, but I love it. I love the Loose Attitude of it. What About You

It was the first album I ever bought – so has a major place in my love of music.  We got our first record player the week I bought it and it had just been released a few weeks prior.  I had heard some of the music on the radio and seen some clips on TV (I think they were from the rooftop concert), loved Get Back – and that was it.

Oh, and I don't buy into most theories on Long and Winding Road as noted in some of my other posts; I think Paul was just miffed at not being involved rather than hating the mix – the Broad Street version is just as schmaltzy.

You really think it was all because of spite??  Wow.  

Spite? – possibly – I said miffed for a reason – for me it is much less strong a term than spite.  But I also think that by this time he had finally realised that John (and maybe George) had no interest in the Beatles continuing and this was a good excuse to be making the split 'official' himself; rather than 'I have had enough of those clowns and I'm out of here'.  He was able to shift the blame to the poor sod struggling to get the record out and away from his band – just in case he was able to talk them around.  I'm not saying this was all conscious – some of it may have been his way of coping.

 

21 December 2013
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A wild and windy discussion…..Interesting, informative  and as always, I've learnt a lot .

 

But………'It will always lead us back' to the fact it's,

 'Paul's song……Paul's say!'

He got his way in the end and we have multiple versions of a great song.

Just chose the one you like.

 

As a member of the fan club from about '64 I bought the Beatles Monthly religiously. Talk of a great new song called, 'Across The Universe' came up. Even the first mention of the title conjured for me images of what could be another, 'Strawberry Fields' or 'I Am The Walrus'  Fascinating details of the recording and how Paul went outside and invited some girls from the Abbey Road car-park to come in and help with the falsetto harmonies.  And later a discussion about when the song would appear….."Possibly their next single".

I always sided with John in the 'sibling' rivalry between him and Paul. The enjoyment of a John song was less instant but seemed to last longer. I was desperate to hear this song. In a later edition of the Beatles Monthly we were told.  "Lady Madonna and a George composition called 'The Inner Light' would be the 'boys choice for their next single'.  Buggar!! For the first time John didn't even get on the single. A tipping point in the two dominant rivals arm wrestling…. and Paul had the upper-hand. John didn't even make second. 

Instead 'Across The Universe' would be the Beatles contribution to a conservation album with other artists including Spike Milligan…… Would Paul have thrown into obscurity a song as strong as that?

By the time 'Let It Be' came out, 'Across The Universe's' moment of greatest impact had gone. Topped or tailed with the 'new' direction of Lady Madonna it would have been the last hurrah of the Psychedelic era. 

Oh well….'If'

 

'If' my aunty had you know what…… she'd be my uncle!'

 

 

 

 

 

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