Strawberry fields forever


Two very influential pop songs about childhood nostalgia, written after the Beatles vowed not to do concerts ever again. They had more time to invest in the studio, so they were experimenting a lot. Here they added a melotron, a swarmandal (a what?), cello and brass arrangements, and two distinct versions that were spliced together in the recording process. All resulting in a poppy song that is both cheerful and nostalgic.

Strawberry fields was the location for a children’s home of the Salvation Army in Liverpool. John Lennon liked to play there, and was fascinated with the place as a young kid. While tripping on LSD and trying to “dissolve” his ego John Lennon created a song that changed pop music and birthed the genre of psychedelic pop. As such, it was highly influential during the next decades.

The building of Strawberry Field, built in 1870, was demolished in 1973 due to structural problems (and lack of money to fix them properly I suppose). The gates that were also part of John Lennon’s memory are still there though, with beautiful red coloured metalwork. These were stolen in 2000, and later brought back to the police, after the buyer became aware what they were. In 2005 they were removed again, to be replaced by replicas in 2011.

There is also a small memorial in New York’s Central Park called Strawberry Fields. This was dedicated a few months after John was killed nearby, in December 1980.

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