Friday, February 10, 2017

February 10th

Under the direction of Producer George Martin, the orchestration (performed by a 40-piece orchestra) is added to the new Beatles' track "A Day In The Life".  Martin later commented that when he told some of Britain's finest musicians to play 24-bars of "cacophonous, improvised crescendo" they all "looked at me as though I were completely mad." 

Martin gave the following instructions and criteria to the orchestra:  "Start very quietly and end very loud; start very low in pitch and end up very high; and make your own way up the scales, independent of your neighbour."

Crazy at that sounds, it actually worked … and this type of orchestral "build" has been copied and imitated numerous times since.  They were recorded four times, utilizing all four tracks of their tape machine, which was later mixed down to one track, thus creating the equivalent of 160 musicians playing at once.

At The Beatles' request, the orchestra members were asked to wear "full evening dress" … photos were taken at the session of orchestra members in tuxedos wearing funny hats.  One violinist wore a red clown's nose and another had a fake gorilla's paw on his bow hand.  Also present for this momentous occasion were Mick Jagger and Keith Richards of The Rolling Stones, Michael Nesmith of The Monkees (Micky Dolenz had been there a couple of days earlier when The Fab Four worked on another John Lennon track, "Good Morning, Good Morning") and Donovan.   

All that was completed that night was the building, orchestrated crescendo … The Beatles still had not decided how to "end" the song yet. (The original plan called for a multi-tracked, overdubbed layer of voices singing and holding the final note.  All of that changed, however, at the recording session held on February 22nd.) 

Meanwhile, an obviously smitten Micky Dolenz cancels his plans to fly into Berlin, Germany, in order to spend a few more days in London with Samantha Juste.

The Local Charts:

Interesting to see the Ronnie Dove album "Cry" as "The Featured Album Of The Week" on WLS ... and then find Ronnie's picture on this week's WCFL Sound 10 Survey.  (Not quite The Boss making the cover of both Time and Newsweek ... but still pretty cool for 1967 ... especially since Ronnie's records never did particularly well here in Chicago ... and he doesn't even have a hit on EITHER local chart this week!)

Here is a song that performed pretty well here in the City of Chicago in February of 1967 ... certainly better than it did nationally ... and one of my favorites by The Association.