Wednesday, September 24, 2003

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I've been reading here and there about the upcoming rerelease of Let It Be, this time supposedly more stripped-down and in line with what the Fabs intended, as opposed to the Phil Spector-produced (and some say over-produced) "official" version which saw release in 1970.

Now, I've always kinda liked the Spectorized version of Let it Be, even though, to be honest, I don't really think he improved any of the songs that I've heard as originals on the Anthology CDs, and I've had 33 years to assimilate that album. Paul always gets his knickers in a twist over Spector's "Long and Winding Road" job, but let's face it- after hearing no less than four different versions of that tune, on not only the Anthology but several of McCartney's own solo albums, nobody could help that plodding, sappy ditty. I don't think Spector helped or hurt the title track, and I actually prefer his "Across The Universe" to the more singsongy and thin-sounding original version that appeared on the World Wildlife Fund album in '68. Lennon always defended Phil's production job, partially, I suppose because Phil did it at his insistence but also because, I believe, John was interested in maintaining the creative collaboration he had going with Spector, so of course it was in his best interests to butter him up. Anyway, ironic that this is coming out now, since John's not around to oppose it. In fact, one gets the definite sense of Paul once again trying to apply a little revisionist history here, despite the fact that the other survivors, George before his death, approved this reissue.

Ah, well. I want to hear it, whatever the motivation. I'll definitely miss "Maggie Mae" and "Dig It", tracks on the original which are being left off, but that's not a major loss. I always liked the extended version of "Dig It" that John sings in the film, which I've actually seen only once. I'm hoping that a reissued DVD of the movie will soon be forthcoming, as well.

Photo by Linda McCartney, by the way...