NANCY CARR * In the late 60s the Beatles had three strong songwriters (and really, was that fair to other bands?), and thus three distinctive ways of treating the subjects they wrote about—landscapes, love, drugs, etc. (That's without getting into the significant variations within each songwriter's work). This time, I want to consider what Lennon, McCartney, and Harrison saw when they looked at landscapes. Lennon: "Strawberry Fields Forever" (released February 1967) The physical Strawberry Field, in Woolton Inspired by the grounds of the Strawberry Field children's home in Woolton, this song proved so powerful that Lennon's memorial in New York City's Central [...]
If you don't know the blog Dangerous Minds, go take a look. I find it essential reading, and check it nearly every day. This morning they posted a YouTube video which lovingly traces the evolution of Strawberry Fields Forever, which I've embedded below. You'll doubtless recognize the tracks (from It's Not Too Bad, Anthology and other places), but it's a nice piece of work, a good use of the form, and well worth listening to. http://youtu.be/QS6wswlJCB4
Frames from the “Strawberry Fields” promo film, shot January 30, 1967, in Knole Park, Sevenoaks, Kent. DEVIN McKINNEY • At first, Paul is sanguine, at his ease, perhaps even lofty on teasmoke. But what does he spy, reflected in the varnished piano of a Kentish night? A Beatle aide caught in pass, or a vigilant spirit on eternal watch? May we say, you or I, what so widens his eye?