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“Revolution 9”

Published on 1968
Author: Lennon/McCartney
Track 29 on “The Beatles – White Album”

What the Beatles said about “Revolution 9”

GEORGE 1969: "Revolution 9 wasn’t particularly like a Beatles number… it worked quite well in the context of all those different songs. I find it heavy to listen to myself– in fact, I don’t, really."

JOHN 1971: "I thought I was painting in sound a picture of revolution, but I made a mistake, you know. The mistake was that it was antirevolution."

JOHN 1980: "The slow version of ‘Revolution’ on the album went on and on and on and I took the fade-out part, which is what they sometimes do with disco records now, and just layered all this stuff over it. It was the basic rhythm of the original ‘Revolution’ going on with some twenty (tape) loops we put on, things from the archives of EMI. We were cutting up classical music and making different-size loops, and then I got and engineer tape on which some test engineer was saying, ‘Number nine.’ All those different bits of sound and noise are all compiled. There were about ten (tape) machines with people holding pencils on the loops– some only inches long and some a yard long. I fed them all in and mixed them live. I did a few mixes until I got one I liked. Yoko was there for the whole thing and she made decisions about which loops to use. It was somewhat under her influence, I suppose. Once I heard her stuff– not just the screeching and the howling but her sort of word pieces and talking and breathing and all this strange stuff, I thought, My God, I got intrigued… so I wanted to do one. I spent more time on ‘Revolution 9’ than I did on half the songs I ever wrote. It was a montage."

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