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Where Does "Cry Baby Cry" End?
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#9
In My Broken Chair
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1 August 2013 - 4.02am

As a young man, I grew up with The Beatles' 1987 CD editions (which, in retrospect, are horrible). So when I'd listen to Disc 2 of the White Album, I would see that both "Can You Take Me Back" and the G. Martin-A. Taylor conversation ("Bottle of claret...") were tacked on to the end of "Cry Baby Cry". This is the way I assumed that it was meant to be until the 2009 remasters (Where "Cry" ends after "CYTMB" and "Revolution 9" begins at "Bottle of claret"). This seemed just fine to me until I discovered that some people don't consider either to be correct: many say that "Can You Take Me Back" is part of "9", serving as a sort of overture. I'm sure there's no official answer to this, since the composer of both songs is no longer alive, but where do you think "Cry Baby Cry" ends and "Revolution 9" begins?

Thanks!

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Ron Nasty
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1 August 2013 - 4.22am

Welcome 9

It is an oft argued question. I first heard it on vinyl many years ago, when you didn't have these chapter marks. I have always approached it like this, Cry Baby Cry ends, there is a short little hidden link track (Can You Take Me Back?), and then Revolution 9 starts with a little bit of studio chat.

Hope you might consider introducing on the "Introduce yourself to the forum" thread in All Together Now and feel welcome here.

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Linde
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1 August 2013 - 11.55am

That's how I see it too. And if I would have to divide it in 2 songs, if I'd say '"Can You Take Me Back'' was part of one of them, I'd say it was part of Cry Baby Cry.

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meanmistermustard

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1 August 2013 - 12.34pm

Cry Baby Cry ends with the final "Cry" before going into the hidden link track Can You Take Me Back. There are 3 songs not 2. That's how I see it.

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DrBeatle
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1 August 2013 - 1.03pm

Linde said
That's how I see it too. And if I would have to divide it in 2 songs, if I'd say '"Can You Take Me Back'' was part of one of them, I'd say it was part of Cry Baby Cry.

That's how I've always seen it. As a very spooky, eerie, and effective coda to Cry Baby Cry...I think they fit perfectly together, serendipity or not.

 

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vonbontee
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1 August 2013 - 9.26pm

I've always wondered how they came to keep that scrap, and how they decided to place it at the end of "Cry Baby Cry" (as opposed to after "I Will", which was recorded during the same session.) Possibly as a kind of "last glimpse" of Paul McCartney, who disappears from the remainder of that album (an entire half-side!) after that point?

Anyways, on my old Capitol vinyl copy from the '80s, the "bottle of claret..." appeared at the start of "#9", physically separated from the end of "Can You Take Me Back" by the 'rill'. So I've always assumed that's proper.

I remember George saying 'Blimey, he's always talking about “Yesterday”, you'd think he was Beethoven or somebody' - Paul McCartney

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SatanHimself
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1 August 2013 - 9.34pm

I think it helps to remember that this was created in the days before digital track markers.

This was a work of art, and the artists added random things here and there to enhance the experience.

Can You Take Me Back is what's known as an Interstitial.  It exists as a part of the whole album but not of any particular song.  It was put there for fun, the flow of the album, to make a bridge into "Revolution 9", because McCartney particularly liked the way he sung it...  Whatever reason.

As digital CD track markings go, it should have been coded to exist in the "pre-gap" track with the counter held to 00:00, so it isn't part of either song.  It's just...  There.

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meanmistermustard

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1 August 2013 - 11.29pm

I read somewhere a reason why Can You Take Me Back was inserted into the running order and cannot remember for the life of me where or what it said exactly? Anyone?

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Joe
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2 August 2013 - 9.49am

I don't know why it was used, MMM. I presume they just thought it was a nice little addition.

Come Together/Dear Prudence/Cry Baby Cry is one of the tracks on the Love album. As far as I can tell the only part of CBC in the song is "Can you take me back". I've a feeling the publishing for CBC also included CYTMB, rather than the latter being a separate song.

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Duke_of_Kirkcaldy
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4 August 2013 - 2.24am

I agree it's more fitting that "Cry, Baby, Cry" ends with "Can You Take Me Back," and "Revolution 9" begins with the studio chatter.

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SatanHimself
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4 August 2013 - 2.35am

Again people...  It's NOT part of either track.  Artists drop interesting things into their work sometimes for the hell of it.  Stop over-analyzing it.  For whatever reason, they tacked an interesting unused song fragment between two other songs when assembling the album.

In the CD age, it arbitrarily got assigned as part of the track marker for "Cry Baby Cry".

I get that in the current age of digital files that 20-second stretch of music is required to be part of another song, but in 1968 it was just something that was included as part of a whole.  It is interstitial.

E is for 'Ergent'.

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#9
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4 August 2013 - 6.26am

SatanHimself said
I get that in the current age of digital files that 20-second stretch of music is required to be part of another song, but in 1968 it was just something that was included as part of a whole.

Actually, no. As I'm sure you know, songs on LPs are separated by thin, slightly different colored circles called rills. That means that songs that were separated by rills are independent, and parts that aren't separated are part of another track. The four shortest Beatles songs, Her Majesty, Maggie Mae, Dig It, and Wild Honey Pie were all separated by rills (so length doesn't matter). If they really wanted it to be, Can You Take Me Back could easily have been separated. But it wasn't.(Sorry, I'm not at home, so I don't have a picture of the vinyl.) That means unless it was a production oversight, it is part of one of the two songs.

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Ron Nasty
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4 August 2013 - 6.56am

What you are missing that in 1967, for Sgt. Pepper, they issued instructions for "no rills" between certain tracks. For instance, there is no rill between Sgt. Pepper and With A Little Help From My Friends, there are no rills between Good Morning Good Morning, Sgt. Pepper (Reprise) and A Day In The Life. On the White Album there is no rill between Back In The USSR and Dear Prudence, no rill between Bungalow Bill and While My Guitar, no rill between I'm So Tired and Blackbird, and many others. And the rill you quote for Her Majesty is actually an artificial one created by the 17 seconds of silence that were on the master tape, it was not cut as a rill. Would you argue that all these tracks that were cut without rills were actually single tracks?

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#9
In My Broken Chair
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4 August 2013 - 7.29am

mja6758 said
What you are missing that in 1967, for Sgt. Pepper, they issued instructions for "no rills" between certain tracks. For instance, there is no rill between Sgt. Pepper and With A Little Help From My Friends, there are no rills between Good Morning Good Morning, Sgt. Pepper (Reprise) and A Day In The Life. On the White Album there is no rill between Back In The USSR and Dear Prudence, no rill between Bungalow Bill and While My Guitar, no rill between I'm So Tired and Blackbird, and many others. And the rill you quote for Her Majesty is actually an artificial one created by the 17 seconds of silence that were on the master tape, it was not cut as a rill. Would you argue that all these tracks that were cut without rills were actually single tracks?

No, because they were listed as such. There's no good reason to think of Can You Take Me Back as a separate song, other than the fact that it's a different recording. It's like saying "Oh my soul, so harsh" at the end of I've Got A Feeling is a different track. Or Danny Boy at the end of One After 909. Or the weird mellotron fade-in section of Strawberry Fields. (By the way, there definitely are rills between GMGM, Reprise, and ADITL. There are also rills between USSR & Prudence, Bungalow Bill & Guitar, and Tired & Blackbird. I'm 90% sure that it is a true rill between The End and Her Majesty. The darkness that on, say, the false-fadeout of Helter Skelter is definitely different from the darkness I see before Her Majesty.)

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Ron Nasty
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4 August 2013 - 8.20am

I think this may depend on your definition of rills and their definition. I refer to the recording sheet for the first assembly of Sgt. Pepper here (slightly different track-listing to the final LP but same instructions). Both sides are listed as "No Rills" with this note added at the end, to make the instruction clear to the cutting engineer, "No gaps between items - Ends of die-away joined to following item - as per G. Martin". A rill, strictly speaking, is a period of silence separating two tracks that is cut slightly wider to allow a listener to navigate the disc. That cutting engineers, Porky in particular, found a way to mark the end of track by cutting the groove slightly wider at that point while still having it carry sound does not make it a rill as they understood one. That the definition changed slightly over time to take in their innovation, and its use by others, does not change their meaning at the time. As to Her Majesty, of course it looks different to how the gap looks for Helter Skelter - Helter Skelter did not have a 17 second gap before it faded back in. And, if you have an original copy of Abbey Road, just as Can You Take Me Back is not listed on The White Album, Her Majesty was not listed on Abbey Road.

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#9
In My Broken Chair
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4 August 2013 - 8.54am

mja6758 said
I think this may depend on your definition of rills and their definition. I refer to the recording sheet for the first assembly of Sgt. Pepper here (slightly different track-listing to the final LP but same instructions). Both sides are listed as "No Rills" with this note added at the end, to make the instruction clear to the cutting engineer, "No gaps between items - Ends of die-away joined to following item - as per G. Martin". A rill, strictly speaking, is a period of silence separating two tracks that is cut slightly wider to allow a listener to navigate the disc. That cutting engineers, Porky in particular, found a way to mark the end of track by cutting the groove slightly wider at that point while still having it carry sound does not make it a rill as they understood one. That the definition changed slightly over time to take in their innovation, and its use by others, does not change their meaning at the time. As to Her Majesty, of course it looks different to how the gap looks for Helter Skelter - Helter Skelter did not have a 17 second gap before it faded back in. And, if you have an original copy of Abbey Road, just as Can You Take Me Back is not listed on The White Album, Her Majesty was not listed on Abbey Road.

Yes, I understand rills and all that, but my copies of Sgt. Pepper and the White Album have rills in all the places you said there weren't. Maybe it's because they're later pressings and they're American. When I said that the Her Majesty rill looked different from the fade out of Helter Skelter, I meant that it simply looked to be of a much different luster-- something that cannot be changed by the length of the silence. I'm not sure, though, as I grew up in the CD age. I've only had a few years experience with vinyl while you've probably had your whole life.

One last point-- (as Joe said) Can You Take Me Back was used on the Love CD and was listed as part of Cry Baby Cry, meaning that George Martin considers it to be a part of CBC.

But we'll never agree on this point. It's just another great thing about the Beatles. Their music is so... enigmatic.

Bungalow Bob
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20 September 2013 - 10.45pm

#9 said
Yes, I understand rills...  It's just another great thing about the Beatles. Their music is so... enigmatic.

 

Well, I learned a new word here, "rill." And, as usual, I'm fascinated by this discussion about rills and the mysterious lack of them on various Beatlealbums. It occurred to me that (quite possibly) the last song that will ever be released by the "Beatles" is titled "Real Love." Or... could it have been "Rill Love?" Hmm... The group remained enigmatic right to the end.*

*This, uh... new theory is best pondered in a pompous "reads-way-too-deep-into-the-Beatles" voice. ;-)

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The Lost Beatle
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18 April 2014 - 2.43pm

can you take me back complete:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vm5cdLI9Za4

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Bungalow Bob
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18 April 2014 - 3.52pm

This 1:58 version of "Can You Take Me Back?" is fascinating, mostly for this reason: because Paul, the man of a million melodies, was obviously stuck on that one chord. It's an interesting chord, ringing with unresolved notes, longing to go somewhere. I think there should be a songwriting contest, to finish this melody, and flesh out the germ of the lyrical idea. I would really like to hear where various songwriters would take this haunting fragment. Of course, if Paul happens to read this, he may be so inclined to finish it himself, before any hacks can get their hooks in it.   ;-)

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meanmistermustard

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18 April 2014 - 4.11pm

That video of Can You Take Me Back is not complete, the full performance runs for 2 minutes 21 seconds.

"I told you everything I could about me, Told you everything I could" ('Before Believing' - Emmylou Harris) 

"Don't make your love suffer insecurities; Trade the baggage of "self" to set another one free" ('Paper Skin' - Kendall Payne)

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