John Lennon
Compositions - Front Cover of the Box Compositions - Back Cover of the Box
Compositions - Front Cover of the Box Compositions - Back Cover of the Box
Compositions - Front Cover of the Book Compositions - Front Cover of the C.D.
Compositions - Front Cover of the Book Compositions - Front Cover of the C.D.
Label Vigotone
Catalogue No. VT 191
Country of origin U.S.A.
Release date 2000
Total time 64:00
Comments: From The Book :
After the emotionally exhausting Plastic Ono Band writing and recording sessions, it was time for John Lennon to exhibit a lighter compositional touch. Perhaps showing the strain from the amount of single-minded effort that went into that LP, John in contrast seemed to be all over the place with this batch of songs and noodlings, recorded in late Autumn of 1970 at the Tittenhurst Park estate. A rare glimpse into a single Lennon piano demo session, Compositions reveals an artist trying to find his way to what would eventually become the Imagine LP. While John is not in the best voice of his career, it is still a fascinating listening experience, and has never before appeared in its entirety.
John and Yoko would go on to make their individual LP's, Imagine and Fly, the next year, and would move to New York, leaving Tittenhurst Park AND England behind ... for good.
This piano tape is an excellent example of the post-Beatle days of Ascot creativity, and some of the last home recordings that John made in his native land.

My Comments
Fabulous essential set, so many insights, so many raw beginnings.
If this really is one continuous session, you can only be impressed that the great man can come up with so many quality songs with the smallest effort. Incredible.
And once again from the bootleggers, a very professional set, a nicely presented CD in a good quality box with a 28 page booklet. The entire set has some great photographs (loved the one of John on a mini-motorbike, with the registration plate XUC 91H, I wonder who owns this now ??) and some excellent text. The track synopsis is by Tony Cooks, and there is also some terrific pictures and words about "Tittenhurst" which has been extracted from The Beatles London by Schreuders, Lewisohn and Smith.
       See it ... BUY IT !

The C.D.

No Tracklisting Notes Time
1 Make Love Not War This song did not end up on "Imagine", but after being combined with a song heard later on the tape ("I Promise"), and being rewritten somewhat, this became the title track of the 1973 album "Mind Games". 04:11
2 I'm The Greatest At this point in 1970, the song was in embryonic form and had more John-orientated references than it would after being handed over to the "Ringed one" ! 01:36
3 I'm The Greatest Second shorter pass of the above. 00:39
4 How ? This first pass is very interesting in that John sings in the plural, eg, "How can we go forward when we don't know which way we're facing" 01:49
5 Child Of Nature This was on it's was to becoming "Jealous Guy", but here, still held on to it's 1968 "Beatles in India" origins. This portion is three false starts. 00:56
6 Child Of Nature A full performance, in all these versions it had become, "On the road to Marakesh". 01:15
7 Oh Yoko ! John attempts a start at this, but breaks off to talk to Yoko. 00:49
8 Sally And Billy Unreleased. John initially tries to find the right key. 01:16
9 Sally And Billy More breakdowns continuing from the above, John goes back to this song in 1976 at the Dakota.
(Do I detect, Bowie's "Oh You Pretty Thing" ?)
10 Rock And Roll People This song eventually surfaces on "Menlove Avenue" 04:21
11 Oh Yoko ! A more confident version, but still playing so-o-o slowly, compared to the finished version. 02:50
12 Oh Yoko ! John gets fed up with it after 30 seconds and noodles around on the piano. 00:47
13 Help ! A highlight of the tape, in this reworked slower version, John appears to be enjoying himself, until he abandons it when he can't remember the chords for the chorus. An amusing moment occurs when Yoko makes a comment to John, and John replies,
"I don't care how you want to sing it, dear, I'm singing it myself at the moment..."
14 Instrumental Piano doodlings 04:11
15 Happy Christmas After the previous doodling which went nowhere, John jokes about "John and Yoko's Christmas record" 03:17
16 Happy Christmas "Greetings from Ascot, from the home of John and Yoko" 02:26
17 People Get Ready/How ? A short burst of "People Got Ready" leads into a version of "How?", where John is getting closer to the final structure. 05:25
18 How ? Another long run-through, with Yoko joining in towards the end. 05:05
19 How ? And yet another pass. 04:50
20 My Heart Is In Your Hands A false start followed by an unknown unreleased song. 01:34
21 Mailman, Bring Me No More Blues A standard blues, sung with more conviction this time, until John changes chords. 02:06
22 I Promise In the "Oh Darling" vein, this turns into a recognisable early "Mind Games".
At the end John can be heard coughing and spluttering.
23 You Know How Hard It Is An unknown unreleased song. 01:59
24 I'll Make You Happy An unknown unreleased song, in which at the end John slips into "Cold Turkey" ! 01:56
25 I'll Make You Happy Another pass of this unknown unreleased song. 03:42

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