Recorded: 25, 28 September, 5 October 1969
Producers: John Lennon, Yoko Ono
Released: 24 October 1969 (UK), 20 October 1969 (US)
2 May 2013
Who is playing the guitar hook that runs so effectively through this song? Is it John or Eric?
On a separate note I often wonder what a Beatles version would sound like if Paul hadn’t veto’d it as a potential single with George Martin producing and whether that rejection was a root cause of the band folding, at least from John’s perspective given that transcript of a September ’69 meeting (recorded for an absent Ringo) that seems to point that they were tossing around ideas for a follow up to Abbey Road .
17 October 2013
I’ve always wondered that……
Sounds like John…..maybe they are both at it together.
Can you imagine?
“Come here Eric……Look you put yer fingers here like this…..Turn up the sound and reverb and then forget all the clever twiddly stuff and crunch it…..That’s it brilliant brilliant……..Want to Join the Beatles??”
15 February 2015
According to Joe’s article, it was played by Eric Clapton. John had a hand in its creation, though.
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It verges from the sublime to the ridiculote
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17 October 2013
25 February 2020
17 December 2012
A 2021 4K remaster of the original 1969 video using the 2020 Ultimate Mix audio appeared on YT about an hour ago…
Original footage of John & Yoko’s Montreal Bed-In and New York filmed by Jonas Mekas, with inserts of John & Yoko and the Plastic Ono Band performing ‘Cold Turkey ‘ live at Varsity Stadium in 1969, directed by D.A. Pennebaker. First released 1969; restored to 4K, 2021.
John: ‘It’s a strange story because when we were in Montreal, (Yoko’s friend from New York) Jonas Mekas – who some people will know is like the Daddy of underground films – was making these quick clips of us. We didn’t know what he was making. Now we can see it, you know. And then he sent it to us in England with a message which we never received – somebody opened the packet saying, ‘Play this with “Give Peace A Chance “‘ because we were doing the Bed-In in Montreal and he was filming that.
But we were looking around for a bit of film to show with ‘Cold Turkey ‘, like a promo film for the pop shows in England. And so we just tried it and we just put on his film with the record and it just went ‘bam bam!’ – it just fitted so well. The timing and the length and everything was so extraordinary that we said “that’s it!” So I don’t know whether you’d be disappointed that it’s not with ‘Give Peace A Chance ‘ but ‘Cold Turkey ‘ is the message on this.’
(interview at Ronnie Hawkins’s Farm, Mississauga, Canada, 18 December 1969)
"I only said we were bigger than Rod... and now there's all this!" Ron Nasty
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The Beatles Bible 2020 non-Canon Poll Part One: 1958-1963 and Part Two: 1964-August 1966
14 June 2016
I’ve rediscovered this song in recent times. I love the rawness of the subject matter, plus it sounds good.
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