Imagine (The Ultimate Collection) John Lennon
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- 1Imagine (Ultimate Mix)03:06
- 2Crippled Inside (Ultimate Mix)03:51
- 3Jealous Guy (Ultimate Mix)04:14
- 4It's So Hard (Ultimate Mix)02:29
- 5I Don’t Wanna Be A Soldier Mama I Don’t Wanna Die (Ultimate Mix)06:08
- 6Gimme Some Truth (Ultimate Mix)03:18
- 7Oh My Love (Ultimate Mix)02:47
- 8How Do You Sleep? (Ultimate Mix)05:39
- 9How? (Ultimate Mix)03:36
- 10Oh Yoko! (Ultimate Mix)04:16
- 11Power To The People (Ultimate Mix)03:24
- 12Well (Baby Please Don't Go) (Ultimate Mix)04:04
- 13God Save Us (Ultimate Mix)03:12
- 14Do The Oz (Ultimate Mix)03:09
- 15God Save Oz (Ultimate Mix)03:27
- 16Happy Xmas (War Is Over) (Ultimate Mix)03:35
- 17Imagine (Elements Mix)02:13
- 18Jealous Guy (Elements Mix)04:12
- 19Oh My Love (Elements Mix)01:56
- 20How? (Elements Mix)03:36
- 21Imagine (Demo)03:17
- 22Imagine (Take 1)03:05
- 23Crippled Inside (Take 3)03:50
- 24Crippled Inside (Take 6 / Alternate Guitar Solo)03:47
- 25Jealous Guy (Take 9)02:16
- 26It's So Hard (Take 6)02:33
- 27I Don’t Wanna Be A Soldier Mama I Don’t Wanna Die (Take 11)04:34
- 28Gimme Some Truth (Take 4)03:38
- 29Oh My Love (Take 6)02:44
- 30How Do You Sleep? (Takes 1 & 2)05:57
- 31How? (Take 31)03:47
- 32Oh Yoko! (Bahamas, 1969)05:00
- 33Power To The People (Take 7)03:25
- 34God Save Us (Demo)02:57
- 35Do The Oz (Take 3)06:42
- 36Happy Xmas (War Is Over) (Alternate Mix)03:23
- 37Imagine (Take 10 / Raw Studio Mix)03:12
- 38Crippled Inside (Take 6 / Raw Studio Mix)03:50
- 39Jealous Guy (Take 29 / Raw Studio Mix)04:22
- 40It's So Hard (Take 11 / Raw Studio Mix)02:42
- 41I Don’t Wanna Be A Soldier Mama I Don’t Wanna Die (Take 4 / Extended / Raw Studio Mix)07:56
- 42Gimme Some Truth (Take 4 / Extended / Raw Studio Mix)03:40
- 43Oh My Love (Take 20 / Raw Studio Mix)02:47
- 44How Do You Sleep? (Take 11 / Extended / Raw Studio Mix)06:00
- 45How? (Take 40 / Raw Studio Mix)03:55
- 46Oh Yoko! (Take 1 / Extended / Raw Studio Mix)06:15
- 47Imagine (Take 1 / Raw Studio Mix)03:25
- 48Jealous Guy (Take 11 / Raw Studio Mix)04:27
- 49I Don’t Wanna Be A Soldier Mama I Don’t Wanna Die (Take 21 / Raw Studio Mix)05:17
- 50How Do You Sleep? (Take 1 / Raw Studio Mix)08:41
- 51How Do You Sleep? (Takes 5 & 6 / Raw Studio Mix)07:02
- 52Imagine (Evolution Documentary / Mono)06:50
- 53Crippled Inside (Evolution Documentary / Mono)03:59
- 54Jealous Guy (Evolution Documentary / Mono)06:11
- 55It's So Hard (Evolution Documentary / Mono)06:50
- 56I Don’t Wanna Be A Soldier Mama I Don’t Wanna Die (Evolution Documentary / Mono)07:06
- 57Gimme Some Truth (Evolution Documentary / Mono)05:12
- 58Oh My Love (Evolution Documentary / Mono)07:31
- 59How Do You Sleep? (Evolution Documentary / Mono)07:34
- 60How? (Evolution Documentary / Mono)08:45
- 61Oh Yoko! (Evolution Documentary / Mono)03:56
Info for Imagine (The Ultimate Collection)
This historical, remixed and remastered in 24bit collection is fully authorized by Yoko Ono Lennon, who oversaw the production and creative direction. Spread across four albums, this truly unique expanded edition offers a variety of listening experiences that are at once immersive and intimate, ranging from the brand new Ultimate Mixes of the iconic album, which reveal whole new levels of sonic depth, definition and clarity to these timeless songs, to the Raw Studio Mixes that allow listeners to hear Lennon and the Plastic Ono Band's original, unadorned performances, for the first time in nearly fifty years.
The comprehensive nature of the full Imagine – The Ultimate Collection is the absolute best representation of a career artist working at the top of his creative game.
While sifting through boxes upon boxes of the original tapes, engineer Rob Stevens discovered something truly remarkable that had gone unnoticed all these years. "Early 2016, during the gestation period of this project, I'm in the Lenono archives with my people going through tape boxes that have labeling that's unclear, misleading, or missing entirely," says Stevens. "There's a 1" 8-track that says nothing more on the Ascot Sound label than John Lennon, the date, and the engineer (Phil McDonald), with DEMO on the spine. No indication of what material was on the tape. One delicate transfer to digital later, the "Imagine" demo, subsequently enhanced superbly by Paul Hicks, appears within this comprehensive set. It was true serendipity."
The original Imagine album has been faithfully remixed from the ground up by the aforementioned Paul Hicks at Abbey Road Studios under the supervision of Yoko Ono Lennon. Hicks utilized high-definition 24-bit/96kHz audio transfers of the album's original first-generation multitrack recordings for the task and the result is that the instruments and vocal now have a completely new level of clarity. "Yoko was very keen that these Ultimate Mixes should achieve three things – to be totally faithful and respectful to the originals, be generally sonically clearer overall and should increase the clarity of John's vocals. 'It's about John' she said. And she was right. His voice brings the biggest emotional impact to the album."
John Lennon is one of the world's most celebrated songwriters and performers of all time. Lennon has been posthumously honored with a Lifetime Achievement GRAMMY® Award and two special BRIT Awards for Outstanding Contribution to Music, and he has been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Songwriters Hall of Fame. In 2008, Rolling Stone ranked Lennon in the Top 5 of the magazine's "100 Greatest Singers Of All Time" list. With a message as universal and pertinent today as it was when the album was created, Imagine secures John & Yoko's collective place in cultural history.
John Lennon, vocals, piano, guitars, harmonica
George Harrison, dobro, slide guitar, electric guitar
Nicky Hopkins, tack piano, piano, electric piano
Klaus Voormann, bass, double bass
Alan White, drums (1, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10), vibraphone (3, 5), Tibetan cymbals (7)
Jim Keltner, drums (2, 3, 5)
Jim Gordon, drums (4)
King Curtis, saxophone
John Barham, harmonium (3), vibraphone (9)
Joey Molland, acoustic guitar
Tom Evans, acoustic guitar
John Tout, piano
Ted Turner, acoustic guitar
Rod Linton, acoustic guitar
Andy Davis, acoustic guitar
Mike Pinder, tambourine
Steve Brendell, double bass, maracas
Phil Spector, harmony vocal
The Flux Fiddlers (members of the New York Philharmonic), orchestral strings (1, 3, 4, 5, 8, 9)
Produced by John Lennon, Yoko Ono, Phil Spector
If John Lennon had only been one of the four members of the Beatles, his artistic immortality would already have been assured. The so-called “smart Beatle,” he brought a penetrating intelligence and a stinging wit both to the band’s music and its self-presentation. But in such songs as “Strawberry Fields Forever,” “Norwegian Wood (This Bird Has Flown),” “Rain” and “In My Life,” he also marshaled gorgeous melodies to evoke a sophisticated, dreamlike world-weariness well beyond his years. Such work suggested not merely a profound musical and literary sensibility – a genius, in short — but a vision of life that was simultaneously reflective, utopian and poignantly realistic.
While in the Beatles, Lennon displayed an outspokenness that immersed the band in controversy and helped redefine the rules of acceptable behavior for rock stars. He famously remarked in 1965 that the Beatles were “more popular than Jesus” – a statement that was more an observation than a boast, but that resulted in the band’s records being burned and removed from radio station playlists in the U.S. He criticized America’s involvement in Vietnam, and, as the Sixties progressed, he became an increasingly important symbol of the burgeoning counterculture.
But it was only after the breakup of the Beatles in 1970 that the figure the world now recognizes as “John Lennon” truly came into being. Whether he was engaging in social activism; giving long, passionate interviews that, once again, broadened the nature of public discourse for artists; defining a new life as a self-described “househusband;” or writing and recording songs, Lennon came to view his life as a work of art in which every act shimmered with potential meaning for the world at large. It was a Messianic attitude, to be sure, but one that was tempered by an innate inclusiveness and generosity. If he saw himself as larger than life, he also yearned for a world in which his ego managed at once to absorb everyone else and dissolve all differences among people, leaving a Zen-like tranquility and calm. “You may say I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one,” he sang in “Imagine,” which has become his best-known song and an international anthem of peace. “I hope someday you’ll join us, and the world will live as one.”
Such imagery, coupled with the tragedy of his murder in 1980, has often led to Lennon’s being sentimentalized as a gentle prince of peace gazing off into the distance at an Eden only he could see. In fact, he was a far more complex and difficult person, which, in part, accounts for the world’s endless fascination with him. Plastic Ono Band (1970), the first solo album he made after leaving the Beatles, alternates songs that are so emotionally raw that to this day they are difficult to listen to with songs of extraordinary beauty and simplicity. Gripped by his immersion in primal-scream therapy, which encouraged its practitioners to re-experience their most profound psychic injuries, Lennon sought in such songs as “Mother” and “God” to confront and strip away the traumas that had afflicted his life since childhood.
And those traumas were considerable. Lennon’s mother, Julia, drifted in and out of his life during his childhood in Liverpool – he was raised by Julia’s sister Mimi and Mimi’s husband, George – and then died in a car accident when Lennon was seventeen. His father was similarly absent, essentially walking out on the family when John was an infant. He disappeared for good when Lennon was five, only to return after his son had become famous as a member of the Beatles. Consequently, Lennon struggled with fears of abandonment his entire life. When he repeatedly cries, “Mama, don’t go/Daddy come home,” in “Mother,” it’s less a performance than a scarifying brand of therapeutic performance art. And in that regard, as well as many others, it revealed the influence of Yoko Ono, whom Lennon had married in 1969, leaving his first wife, Cynthia, and their son Julian in order to do so.
The minimalist sound of Plastic Ono Band was significant too. Lennon had come to associate the elaborate musical arrangements of much of the Beatles’ later work with Paul McCartney and George Martin, and he consciously set out to purge those elements from his own work. Co-producing with Ono and the legendary Phil Spector, he built a sonic environment that could not have been more basic – guitar, bass, drums, the occasional piano — whatever was essential and absolutely nothing more. Lyrically, he turned away from the psychedelic flights and Joycean wordplay of such songs as “I Am the Walrus” and “Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds” – as well as his books, In His Own Write and A Spaniard in the Works — and toward a style in which unadorned, elemental speech gathered poetic force through its very directness.
On his next album, Imagine (1971), Lennon felt confident enough to reintroduce some melodic elements reminiscent of the Beatles into his songs. Working again with Ono and Spector, he retains the eloquent plainspokenness of Plastic Ono Band, but allows textural elements such as strings, to create more of a sense of beauty. The album’s title track alone ensured its historical importance; it is a call to idealism that has provided solace and inspiration at every moment of social and humanitarian crisis since it was written.
From there Lennon turned to a style that was a sort of journalistic agit-prop. Sometime In New York City (1972) is as outward-looking and blunt as Imagine was, for the most part, soft-focused and otherworldly. As its title suggests, the album reflects Lennon’s immersion in the drama and noise of the city to which he had moved with Yoko Ono. And as its cover art suggests, the album is something like a newspaper – a report from the radical frontlines on the political upheavals of the day. His activism would create enormous problems for Lennon, however. The Nixon administration, paranoid about the possibility that a former Beatle might become a potent leader and recruiting tool of the anti-war movement, attempted to have Lennon deported. Years of legal battles ensued before Lennon finally was awarded his green card in 1976.
Lennon’s political struggles unfortunately found their match in his personal life. He and Ono split up in the fall of 1973, shortly before the release of his album, Mind Games. He moved to Los Angeles and later described the eighteen months he spent separated from Ono as his “lost weekend,” a period of wild indulgence and artistic drift. Like Mind Games, the albums he made during this period, Walls and Bridges (1974) and Rock N Roll (1975), are the expressions of a major artist seeking, with mixed results, to recover his voice. None of them lack charm, and their high points include the lovely title track of Mind Games; Walls and Bridges’ “Whatever Gets You Through the Night,” a rollicking duet with Elton John that gave Lennon his first number-one single as a solo artist; and the sweet nostalgia of Rock N Roll, a covers album that was Lennon’s tribute to the musical pioneers of his youth. But none of those albums rank among his greatest work.
In 1975, Lennon reunited with Ono, and their son Sean was born later that year. For the next five years, Lennon withdrew from public life, and his family became his focus. Then, in 1980, he and Ono returned to the studio to work on Double Fantasy, a hymn to their life together with Sean. The couple was plotting a full-fledged comeback – doing major interviews to support the album’s release, recording new songs for a follow-up, planning a tour. Then, shockingly, Lennon was shot to death outside the apartment building where he and Ono lived on the night of December 8, 1980. (Anthony DeCurtis). Source: www.johnlennon.com
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