JOHN LENNON Imagine… All The Outtakes (1971/1994)

Imagine… All The Outtakes (1971/1994)
Studio Quality, No Post-Production

Unless you’re the hard core type that just has to have it all, a Beatles bootleg is only as good as its quality. These outtakes from John Lennon’s 1971 Imagine sessions are some of the best. As listeners already know, soon after the stripped-bare Plastic Ono Band album, Lennon developed a bad habit of over-producing some of his work, famously adding effects to his vocals because – as hard as it is to believe – he had issues with the sound of his own voice. You can’t call these recordings ‘raw,’ because a majority of this stuff is studio clean. Pre-produced, if you will, without the annoying echo and overdubs that could sometimes obscure the purity of Lennon’s studio recordings. The first disc here is ostensibly an ‘alternate’ version of Imagine, while disc three sports a great series of rehearsals for “How Do You Sleep” (note how Lennon suggests incorporating some reggae… in 1971!?). Some ragged, bootleg-typical early demos are tagged on to the end. Overall, though, this is a great overview of the Imagine sessions, with quality sound that should provide repeat listening value. Includes George Harrison, Nicky Hopkins, Klaus Voormann and Alan White. (@320)

ONE “The Alternate Imagine
Imagine (Version 2 Take 1) (3:15
Crippled Inside (Take 17) (3:46)
Jealous Guy (Take 2) (4:25)
It’s So Hard (Take 2) (2:27)
I Don’t Wanna Be A Soldier (Take 2) (5:38)
Gimme Some Truth (Alternate Vocal) (3:36)
Oh My Love (Take 2) (2:55)
How Do You Sleep (Alternate Vocal) (6:46)
How (Alternate Vocal) (3:41)
Oh Yoko ! (Take 9) (5:47)
“Just A Little Story” (Studio Monlogue) (0:34)
Well (Baby Please Don’t Go) (Studio) (5:51)

TWO “The Outtakes
Imagine (Take 1) (3:07)
Imagine (Take 2) (2:56)
Imagine (Take 3) (3:11)
Imagine (Alt Vocal) (3:11)
Crippled Inside (Take 2) (3:50)
Jealous Guy (Take 1) (4:11)
Jealous Guy (Take 7) (4:09)
Jealous Guy (Vocal Take 20) (4:12)
I Don’t Wanna Be A Soldier (Take 1 With Sax) (5:48)
I Don’t Wanna Be A Soldier (Alt Mix) (5:51)
Oh My Love (Alt Take 1A) (2:49)
Oh My Love (Alt Take 1B) (2:50)
How (Take 12) (3:48)
How (Alt Vocal B) (3:44)
How (Original Take 2) (3:43)
Oh Yoko! (Take 7) (4:11)
I’m The Greatest (Piano Demo) (2:41)
Imagine (Rehearsal) (2:57)
San Francisco Bay Blues (Impromptu Studio Solo) (1:14)

THREE “Sessions & Demos
How Do You Sleep (Rehearsal 1) (1:52)
Tuning Jam (0:39)
How Do You Sleep (Rehearsal 2) (4:23)
How Do You Sleep (Rehearsal 3) (7:36)
How Do You Sleep (Version 2) (5:46)
How Do You Sleep (Take 2) (8:10)
How Do You Sleep (Version 3) (6:35)
How Do You Sleep (Alt Vocal B) (6:14)
Oh My Love (Acoustic Demo A ’68) (1:25)
Oh My Love (Acoustic Demo B ’68) (1:24)
How (Piano Demo Dec ’70) (4:33)
People Get Ready/How (Piano Demo Dec ’70) (3:04)
Medley: How/Child Of Nature/Oh Yoko! (Piano Demo Dec ’70) (4:26)
Oh Yoko! (Acoustic Demo ’69) (4:38)
Oh Yoko! (Piano Demo Dec ’70) (0:57)
It’s So Hard (Sax Overdub) (6:55)
I Don’t Wanna Be A Soldier (Sax Overdub) (4:25)
How Do You Sleep (Reprise) (0:18)


  • Capt. Willard
    March 15, 2010 - 13:26 | Permalink

    Search HERE

  • Pythag
    March 16, 2010 - 13:39 | Permalink

    Great Upload Willard. Always a pleasure.

  • Anonymous
    March 16, 2010 - 15:25 | Permalink

    Thank you, Captain!! Awesome!


  • Art Ducko
    March 16, 2010 - 17:12 | Permalink

    First Paulie, now John. It's turning out to be a very Beatley week, but that's a good thing. Thanks again, Cap!

  • Anonymous
    March 17, 2010 - 02:38 | Permalink

    Thank you again and again for all of the great music you provide. It's been a life changer!

  • Art Ducko
    March 17, 2010 - 08:11 | Permalink

    It's so cool to hear these alternate takes. "Oh My Love" is probably my favorite of John's "gentle" songs, & then you get the pissed-off John with his not-well-intentioned "How Do You Sleep". There's also the wonderfully paranoidal "Gimme Some Truth" & "I Don't Wanna Be a Soldier" balanced with his confessional "Jealous Guy". And as much as people hate Yoko, I think "Oh Yoko!" is one of John's happiest songs. It's just a great tune. So thanks again, Cap, I've still got the next two discs to listen to.

  • Anonymous
    March 19, 2010 - 05:47 | Permalink

    Fantastic JL collections! The sound is wonderful. Thanks!


  • Muddy
    March 19, 2010 - 08:04 | Permalink

    Mmm-mm good!

  • or
    March 21, 2010 - 12:02 | Permalink

    in relation to the reggae in 1971: at the time (and earlier) Reggae already hit the U.K, and even some bands scored hit singles. it took longer for Reggae to go stateside, so that's why it seems so visionary. Chris Blackwell came to the UK in 1962, where he produced many Reggae songs on Island Records, and it wasn't until the Wailers' "Catch A Fire" that Reggae became more global a phenomenon.
    It's likely Lennon heard a Reggae song on the radio one day and liked it's "jumpiness".

  • Capt. Willard
    March 21, 2010 - 13:33 | Permalink

    You're probably dead on, it's just surprising to me that Lennon could have been ahead of the curve on reggae. Before Marley, even in the UK, did reggae actually get radio play? Wasn't UK radio still anemic in those days?

  • or
    March 21, 2010 - 19:39 | Permalink

    yes, indeed so. there was a Jamaican minority at the time, and being part of the population led of course to musical influence, which means some form radio air-play. take for example Nicky Thomas, who scored a hit single with "Love of the Common People" and Lee Perry and the Upsetters with "People Funny Boy", whose beat defined reggae in the UK at the time.

  • Capt. Willard
    March 21, 2010 - 19:54 | Permalink

    Thanks for the insight.

  • or
    March 22, 2010 - 08:56 | Permalink

    aye aye Cap'n!

  • April 17, 2012 - 13:47 | Permalink

    thank you, Willis!

  • zappahead
    December 11, 2013 - 06:25 | Permalink

    Thanks for this Willard…..I just did the alternate take of the album so will be interesting how its sounds before the final mix. Thanks once again for your superb blog you are the best….thank you.

  • June 26, 2014 - 21:05 | Permalink

    Sounds great….thanks very much!

  • November 25, 2015 - 08:57 | Permalink

    I just love Nicky’s piano on How Do You Sleep but then I’m a John Lennon and Nicky Hopkins Fanatic.

  • November 25, 2015 - 20:34 | Permalink

    Where can I download these are they still available

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