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AUDIO: Lost Beatle track or fantastic forgery?

I read this news piece yesterday which examines this supposed lost Beatle track.  I had heard it a while ago on a bootleg and forgot about it.  This really makes you think, and question the track.  You simply don’t know if it is true.  Our friends and Earcandy Magazine have examined the track, and can simply say things much better than I can.  Fascinating!  You listen and you be the judge for yourself.  The article continues on Earcandy’s website.  Follow the links to read the entire story, and listen to the track “Peace of Mind.”

I used to be in the habit of picking up Beatle bootlegs whenever I came across them in various fairs or dodgy record stores around the country. These second, third or even fourth generation tapes had usually been transferred from some bootleg vinyl, and would invariably vary in quality from laughingly nowhere-near-CD-quality to distant muffled singing over the sound of several bags of hissing snakes.

These tapes usually contained out-takes, rehearsals or demos of previously released The Beatles material, and as such not only provided me with a unique insight into the song-writing and recording processes of the Fab Four, but also of their musical ability, and indeed lack of in some cases.

Occasionally though, you would find a real little gem, such as a previously unreleased song, and that was always a thrill. Sometimes you could understand why these songs were dumped, like the truly awful “Leave My Kitten Alone”. Other times, like with George Harrisons wonderful “Not Guilty”, you would often have to wonder what processes guided The Beatles to drop certain songs, though I suspect that that particular song was probably a little old hat for where The Beatles were at, at the time.

I discovered one of these gems, called “Peace Of Mind”, on a bootleg tape simply titled “Strawberry Fields Forever” some years ago, and it has since remained a firm favourite of mine. The track, featuring three of The Beatles singing a strangely compelling, and obviously drug induced, dirge, instantly appealed to my love of all things psychedelically The Beatles.


Don’t worry, it’s okay to download it as the song doesn’t seem to be copyrighted to anyone. Because of this, I had planned for a long time to do my own recording of “Peace Of Mind”, copyrighting it myself for the laugh just to see what would happen. I was, by the way, going to do the same with the single piece of released The Beatles music that remains without copyrighted to this day, namely the “Can you take me back where I’ve been from” line that segues into the start of Revolution 9 on the last side of The Beatles (The White Album). Might still do too actually!

“Peace Of Mind” seems to have first appeared on a bootleg album released in 1977 by Ruthless Rhymes Ltd. called “20 x 4”. RR was possibly an American company, though many of their releases seem to have been pressed in Germany. This album was re-released by another company called Remime some two years later, and subsequently appeared on a number of other bootlegs.

No explanation as to where this song might have come from is on the liner notes of any album, and there seems to be no sign of its existence prior to 1977 either. This needn’t be unduly worrying though as new Beatle material was constantly being found at this stage.

One suggestion as to it’s source was that it was recorded during sessions in the De Lane Lea Music Recording Studios during May/June of 1967, the same sessions that produced George Harrisons “It’s All To Much”, and in the same week that Sergeant Peppers was released.

In fact, Mark Lewisohn does mention in his book of Beatles recording session that a number of impromptu, and frankly shoddy jams were recorded during this week, though there is no mention of any other complete or near complete songs, which is strange as “Peace Of Mind”, or “(possibly A or The) Candle Burns” as it is also sometimes called, was obviously the product of at least one overdub.

Most of the theories seem to suggest that John is the lead singer, with backing vocals from Paul. One other suggestion was that it was found in a trash can at Apple in 1970. This is also strange as a decision was made early on in The Beatles careers to keep nearly every fart they had produced on tape for posterity.

Anyway, during the course of my researches I found out to my amazement that this long cherished Beatle gem of mine was, in all probability, not a Beatle recording at all!

By the early nineties, many The Beatles commentators felt that the songs lack of quality indicated that it was not a The Beatles recording. Some suggested that it was a Syd Barrett/Pink Floyd demo, even going as far as to suggest that it ended up, albeit in a vastly altered form, on their 1969 album “More”. Others suggested that it may be a demo from an Apple signing called “White Trash”, who later changed their name to simply “Trash” due to pressure from the BBC. Others suggested that it may even have been one of the myriad of demos that were sent to Apple. Some other commentators simply dismissed it as an “out-fake”, a product of some Beatles fans over-zealous desire to ape their heroes.

(Read entire article.)

Source: Earc


3 Responses

  1. Not the beatles

  2. I agree. It just isn’t them.

  3. Nice Site!!! (p)

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