The Paul McCartney Project

I Am The Walrus

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Other Beatles songs talking about walrus

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Song facts

From Wikipedia:

I Am the Walrus” is a song by the Beatles that was released in November 1967. It was featured in the Beatles’ television film Magical Mystery Tour (MMT) in December of that year, as a track on the associated British double EP of the same name and its American counterpart LP, and was the B-side to the number 1 hit single “Hello, Goodbye“. Since the single and the double EP held at one time in December 1967 the top two slots on the British singles chart, the song had the distinction of being at number 1 and number 2 simultaneously.

Composition

John Lennon received a letter from a pupil at Quarry Bank High School, which he had attended. The writer mentioned that the English master was making his class analyse Beatles’ lyrics. (Lennon wrote an answer, dated 1 September 1967, which was auctioned by Christie’s of London in 1992.) Lennon, amused that a teacher was putting so much effort into understanding the Beatles’ lyrics, decided to write in his next song the most confusing lyrics that he could.

The lyrics came from three song ideas that Lennon had been working on, the first of which was inspired by hearing a police siren at his home in Weybridge; Lennon wrote the lines “Mis-ter cit-y police-man” to the rhythm and melody of the siren. The second idea was a short rhyme about Lennon sitting in his garden, while the third was a nonsense lyric about sitting on a corn flake. Unable to finish the three different songs, he combined them into one. The lyrics also included the phrase “Lucy in the sky,” a reference to the Beatles’ earlier song “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds.”

The walrus refers to Lewis Carroll’s poem “The Walrus and the Carpenter” (from the book Through the Looking-Glass). Lennon expressed dismay upon belatedly realising that the walrus was a villain in the poem.

The final piece of the song came together when Lennon’s friend and former fellow member of the Quarrymen, Peter Shotton, visited and Lennon asked him about a playground nursery rhyme they sang as children. Shotton recalled the rhyme as follows:

Yellow matter custard, green slop pie,
All mixed together with a dead dog’s eye,
Slap it on a butty, ten foot thick,
Then wash it all down with a cup of cold sick.

Lennon borrowed a couple of images from the first two lines. Shotton was also responsible for suggesting to Lennon to change the lyric “waiting for the man to come” to “waiting for the van to come.” The Beatles’ official biographer Hunter Davies was present while the song was being written and wrote an account in his 1968 biography of the Beatles. According to this biography, Lennon remarked to Shotton, “Let the fuckers work that one out.

Lennon claimed he wrote the first two lines on separate acid trips; he explained much of the song to Playboy in 1980:

The first line was written on one acid trip one weekend. The second line was written on the next acid trip the next weekend, and it was filled in after I met Yoko… I’d seen Allen Ginsberg and some other people who liked Dylan and Jesus going on about Hare Krishna. It was Ginsberg, in particular, I was referring to. The words ‘Element’ry penguin’ meant that it’s naïve to just go around chanting Hare Krishna or putting all your faith in one idol. In those days I was writing obscurely, à la Dylan. […]

It never dawned on me that Lewis Carroll was commenting on the capitalist system. I never went into that bit about what he really meant, like people are doing with the Beatles’ work. Later, I went back and looked at it and realized that the walrus was the bad guy in the story and the carpenter was the good guy. I thought, Oh, shit, I picked the wrong guy. I should have said, ‘I am the carpenter.’ But that wouldn’t have been the same, would it? [Sings, laughing] ‘I am the carpenter….’

Musical structure

All the chords are major chords or seventh chords, and all the musical letters of the alphabet (A, B, C, D, E, F and G) are used. The song ends using a Shepard tone, with a chord progression built on ascending and descending lines in the bass and strings, repeated as the song fades. Musicologist Alan W. Pollack analyses: “The chord progression of the outro itself is a harmonic Moebius strip with scales in bassline and top voice that move in contrary motion.” The bassline descends stepwise A, G, F, E, D, C, and B, while the strings’ part rises A, B, C, D, E, F#, G: this sequence repeats as the song fades, with the strings rising higher on each iteration. Pollack also notes that the repeated cell is seven bars long, which means that a different chord begins each four-bar phrase. The fade is described by Walter Everett as a “false ending“, in the form of an “unrelated coda” consisting of the orchestral chord progression, chorus and sampling of the radio play.

The song is in the key of A and the instrumental introduction starts in the Lydian mode of B major. Verse 1 begins with a I–♭III–IV–I rock pattern: “I am he” (A chord)…”you are me” (C chord) “and we are all toge…” (D chord) “…ther” (A chord). Verse 2, however, involves a ♭VI–♭VII–I Aeolian ascent: “waiting” (F chord) “for the van” (G chord) “to come” (A chord). The chorus uses a ♭III–IV–V pattern: “I am the egg-man (C chord) “they are the egg-men (D chord). “I am the walrus (E chord), “goo goo g’joob” hanging as an imperfect cadence until resolved with the I (A chord) on “Mr City Policeman“. At the line “Sitting in an English garden” the D# melody note (as in the instrumental introduction) establishes a Lydian mode (sharp 4th note in the scale) and this mode is emphasised more strongly with the addition of a D# note to the B chord on “If the sun don’t come.

Recording

I Am the Walrus” was the first studio recording made by the Beatles after the death of their manager, Brian Epstein, in August 1967. The basic backing track featuring the Beatles was released in 1996 on Anthology 2. George Martin arranged and added orchestral accompaniment that included violins, cellos, horns, and clarinet. Paul McCartney said that Lennon gave instructions to Martin as to how he wished the orchestration to be scored, including singing most of the parts as a guide. A 16-voice choir of professional studio vocalists named the Mike Sammes Singers took part in the recording as well, variously singing “Ho-ho-ho, hee-hee-hee, ha-ha-ha“, “oompah, oompah, stick it up your jumper!“, “everybody’s got one” and making a series of shrill whooping noises.

In 2015, founding Moody Blues member Ray Thomas said in an interview that he and fellow band member Mike Pinder contributed backing vocals to the song as well as harmonicas to The Fool on the Hill.

Incorporation of text from King Lear

The dramatic reading in the mix is Shakespeare’s King Lear (Act IV, Scene 6), lines 219–222 and 249–262, added to the song on 29 September 1967 direct from an AM radio Lennon was fiddling with that happened to be receiving the broadcast of the play on the BBC Third Programme.

The first excerpt (ll. 219–222) moves in and out of the text, containing fragments of lines only. It begins where the disguised Edgar talks to his estranged and maliciously blinded father the Earl of Gloucester (timings given):

Gloucester: (2:35) Now, good sir, wh– (Lennon appears to change the channel away from the station here)
Edgar: (2:38) — poor man, made tame by fortune — (2:44) good pity —

In the play Edgar then kills Oswald, Goneril’s steward. During the fade of the song the second main extract (ll. 249–262), this time of continuous text, is heard (timings given):

Oswald: (3:52) Slave, thou hast slain me. Villain, take my purse.
If ever thou wilt thrive,(4:02) bury my body,
And give the (4:05) letters which thou find’st about me
To (4:08) Edmund, Earl of Gloucester; (4:10) seek him out
Upon the British party. O, (4:14) untimely Death!
Edgar: (4:23) I know thee well: a (4:25) serviceable villain;
As duteous to the (4:27) vices of thy mistress
As badness would desire.
Gloucester: What, is he dead?
Edgar: (4:31) Sit you down father, rest you.

On the radio broadcast the roles were read by Mark Dignam (Gloucester), Philip Guard (Edgar) and John Bryning (Oswald).

Different versions

In the original (1967) stereo release, at around two minutes through the song, the mix changes from true stereo to “fake stereo”. This came about because the radio broadcast had been added “live” into the mono mix-down and so was unavailable for inclusion in the stereo mix; hence, fake stereo from the mono mix was created for this portion of the song.

The mono version opens with a four-beat chord while the stereo mix features six beats on the initial chord. The four-beat-only intro is also included on a different stereo mix (overseen by George Martin) for the previous MPI Home Video version of Magical Mystery Tour, especially the US Magical Mystery Tour album. The US mono single mix includes an extra bar of music before the words “yellow matter custard“. This is actually the original uncut version of the mono mix called RM23. An early, overdub-free mix of the song released on Anthology 2 reveals John singing the lyrics “Yellow mat-” too early—this was edited out. A hybrid version prepared for the 1980 US Rarities LP combines the six-beat opening with the extra bar of music that precedes the words “yellow matter custard” (from the aforementioned US mono single mix). An entirely new full stereo remix was done in 2012 for Apple’s DVD and BD release of the restored version of MMT. […]

A 5.1 surround sound full stereo remix of the song appeared on the DVD release of Anthology in 2003, on disc 4. A full stereo digital remix was also done for the Cirque du Soleil show Love and album of the same name, released in 2006. Producers George and Giles Martin were allowed access to early generations of the original master tapes. Musical parts that had previously been mixed were now available as separate elements. Additionally a copy of the BBC broadcast of King Lear was acquired. Now, with all the sound sources used in the original mono mix present, a proper stereo remix could be accomplished. These tracks were transferred digitally and lined up to create a new multi-track master from which a new mix would be made.

In addition to the stereo remixes prepared for the Love show and the 2012 Apple reissue referenced above, the DVDs that were released for those same projects contain a 5.1 surround sound mix of the song, making three distinct 5.1 remixes of the same song.

Reception

Critical reception at the time of the track’s release was largely positive:

  • John growls the nonsense (and sometimes suggestive) lyric, backed by a complex scoring incorporating violins and cellos. You need to hear it a few times before you can absorb it” — Derek Johnson.
  • Into the world of Alice in Wonderland now and you can almost visualise John crouching on a deserted shore singing ‘I am the walrus’ to some beautiful strings from far away on the horizon and a whole bagful of Beatle sounds, like a ringing doorbell and someone sawing a plank of wood. A fantastic track which you will need to live with for a while to fully appreciate” — Nick Logan.
  • In the 21st century, professional Beatleologist Scott Freiman called the song “the Beatles’ last psychedelic masterpiece“.

The song was banned by the BBC for the use of the word “knickers” in the line “You’ve been a naughty girl, you’ve let your knickers down

Interpretation

Although it has been reported that Lennon wrote “I Am the Walrus” to confuse those who tried to interpret his songs, there have been many attempts to analyse the meaning of the lyrics.

Seen in the Magical Mystery Tour film singing the song, Lennon, apparently, is the walrus; on the track-list of the accompanying soundtrack EP/LP however, underneath “I Am the Walrus” are printed the words ‘ “No you’re not!” said Little Nicola‘ (in the film, Nicola Hale is a little girl who keeps contradicting everything the other characters say). Lennon returned to the subject in the lyrics of three of his subsequent songs: in the 1968 Beatles song “Glass Onion” he sings, “I told you ’bout the walrus and me, man/You know that we’re as close as can be, man/Well here’s another clue for you all/The walrus was Paul“; in the third verse of “Come Together” he sings the line “he bag production, he got walrus gumboot“; and in his 1970 solo song “God“, admits “I was the walrus, but now I’m John.” […]

Paul McCartney in "Many Years From Now", by Barry Miles:

John worked with George Martin on the orchestration and did some very exciting things with the Mike Sammes Singers… Most of the time they got asked to do Sing Something Simple and all the old songs, but John got them doing all sorts of swoops and phonetic noises. It was a fascinating session. That was John’s baby, great one, a really good one.

From The Usenet Guide to Beatles Recording Variations:

  • [a] mono 29 Sep 1967. edited.
    UK: Parlophone R5655 single 1967, Parlophone MMT 1 (EP) Magical Mystery Tour 1967.
    CD: EMI single 1989, EMI EP box set 1991.
  • [a1] mono 29 Sep 1967. edited.
    US: Capitol 2056 single 1967.
  • [a2] mono made from [a1] 1967, by Capitol.
    US: Capitol MAL 2835 Magical Mystery Tour 1967.
  • [b] stereo, and mock stereo made from [a], 6,17 Nov 1967. edited.
    UK: Parlophone SMMT 1 (EP) Magical Mystery Tour 1967, Apple PCSP 718 The Beatles 1967-1970 1973.
    US: Capitol SV-12199 Reel Music 1982.
    CD: EMI CDP 7 48062 2 Magical Mystery Tour 1987, EMI EP box set 1991, EMI CDP 7 97039 2 The Beatles 1967-1970 1993.
  • [b1] stereo, and mock stereo made from [b]. edited (by Capitol?).
    US: Capitol SMAL 2835 Magical Mystery Tour 1967, Apple SKBO-3404 The Beatles 1967-1970 1973.
  • [b2] stereo, and mock stereo made from [b], and mock stereo made from [a1] 1980, by Capitol.
    Capitol: SHAL-12060 Rarities 1980.
  • [c] stereo 1995.
    CD: Apple CDP 8 34448 2 Anthology 2 1996.

The orchestra and choral singers were recorded on two generations of a separate tape, take 25, with edit pieces, synchronized during mixing to the Beatles on take 17, making a difficult mix that took many tries to get. Lewisohn does not describe this as two tapes at mix stage, but the many attempts at mixing are otherwise inexplicable. The mixes seem to run at slightly variable speeds, maybe a byproduct of synchronizing.

Mono [a] is reportedly mono mix 23, which is an edit of mono mix 10, up to the end of the second “Goo Goo Gajoob”, into mono mix 22. Mix 22 is the one with the radio sound mixed in, from a BBC broadcast of King Lear. [a] has three edits, all in the first part of the song (originally from mono mix 10): 2 of the 6 beats in the intro are cut off; a cymbal crash at the first “Goo Goo Gajoob” is mixed out; and a few beats after “I’m crying” are edited out.

Mono [a1] is similar to [a] and has the first two of the three edits. The beats after “I’m crying” remain in place. This could be mix 22 in its entirety, which Lewisohn says is a complete mix of the whole song, or it could be an early copy of mix 23 before the last edit was done. Mono [a2] appears to be an attempt to edit those beats out of [a1], to sound like [a], but the edit is slightly different.

Stereo [b] is a new mix from the synchronized tapes up to the same spot as the edit in [a]. After that [b] is mock stereo made from mono mix 22, in order to include the radio, which was added sound-on-sound to that one mono mix. [b] has all 6 beats of the intro, and has the cymbal crash at the end of verse 1, but the third edit, the beats after “I’m crying”, was done. The mock stereo sound starts to pan left and right near the end of the fadeout.

[b1] is [b] with the first 2 beats of the intro cut off, as in [a]. This might have been done by Capitol. [b2] is a forgery made by Capitol. The beats after “I’m crying” have been edited back in, in mock stereo made from [a1], to create a bogus complete stereo version.

The stereo home video release of Magical Mystery Tour has a new mix with the 4 beat intro like [b1], to synch with the film. At the edit, it cuts into the mono master, not fake stereo.

The Anthology mix [c] is deliberately different and entirely omits the orchestra and choral singers, and filters out much of the bass. It has the 6-beat intro and the cymbal crash after verse 1. The extra beats after “I’m crying” are revealed to be a miscue with a vocal that was mixed out in [a1], and of course the whole thing is edited out otherwise. (A mono mix available on bootleg since 1978 has that vocal mixed out and has bass; perhaps this is a later state than [c].)

Last updated on May 8, 2017

Lyrics

I am he as you are he as you are me
And we are all together
See how they run like pigs from a gun
See how they fly
I'm crying

Sitting on a cornflake
Waiting for the van to come
Corporation T-shirt, stupid bloody Tuesday
Man you've been a naughty boy
You let your face grow long

I am the eggman
They are the eggmen
I am the walrus
Goo goo g' joob

Mr. City policeman sitting
Pretty little policemen in a row
See how they fly like Lucy in the sky
See how they run
I'm crying
I'm crying, I'm crying, I'm crying

Yellow matter custard
Dripping from a dead dog's eye
Crabalocker fishwife
Pornographic priestess
Boy, you've been a naughty girl
You let your knickers down

I am the eggman
They are the eggmen
I am the walrus
Goo goo g' joob

Sitting in an English garden
Waiting for the sun
If the sun don't come you get a tan
From standing in the English rain

I am the eggman
("How do you do sir")
They are the eggmen
("The man maintains a fortune")
I am the walrus
Goo goo g' joob Goo Goo Goo g' joob

Expert, texpert choking smokers
Don't you think the joker laughs at you
(Ho ho ho hee hee hee hah hah hah)
See how they smile like pigs in a sty
See how they snide
I'm crying

Semolina Pilchard
Climbing up the Eiffel tower
Elementary penguin singing Hare Krishna
Man, you should have seen them kicking
Edgar Allen Poe

I am the eggman
They are the eggmen
I am the walrus
Goo goo g' joob
Goo goo goo g' joob
Goo goo g' joob
Goo goo goo g' joob
Goo goo
Juba juba juba
Juba juba juba
Juba juba juba
Juba juba

(Oh I'm tired, servicible villain
Set you down father, rest you)

Officially appears on


Magical Mystery Tour (Stereo)

Official album

4:36 • Studio versionB1 • Stereo, and mock stereo made from [B]

Paul McCartney:
Bass guitar, Tambourine
Ringo Starr:
Drums
John Lennon:
Electric piano, Mellotron, Vocals
George Harrison:
Lead guitar
George Martin:
Producer
Geoff Emerick:
Engineer
Jack Rothstein:
Violin
Ken Scott:
Engineer
Sidney Sax:
Violin
Peggie Allen:
Backing vocals
Wendy Horan:
Backing vocals
Pat Whitmore:
Backing vocals
Jill Utting:
Backing vocals
June Day:
Backing vocals
Sylvia King:
Backing vocals
Irene King:
Backing vocals
G Mallen:
Backing vocals
Fred Lucas:
Backing vocals
Mike Redway:
Backing vocals
John O'Neill:
Backing vocals
F Dachtler:
Backing vocals
Allan Grant:
Backing vocals
D Griffiths:
Backing vocals
J Smith:
Backing vocals
J Fraser:
Backing vocals
Ralph Elman:
Violin
Andrew McGee:
Violin
Jack Greene:
Violin
Louis Stevens:
Violin
John Jezzard:
Violin
Jack Richards:
Violin
Lionel Ross:
Cello
Eldon Fox:
Cello
Bram Martin:
Cello
Terry Weil:
Cello
Gordon Lewin:
Clarinet
Neil Sanders:
Horn
Tony Tunstall:
Horn
Morris Miller:
Horn
Ray Thomas:
Backing vocals
Mike Pinder:
Backing vocals

Session Recording:
Sep 05, 1967
Studio:
EMI Studios, Studio One, Abbey Road

Session Overdubs:
5, 6, 27, 28, 29 Sep 1967
Studio:
EMI Studios, Abbey Road

Session Mixing:
Nov 06, 1967
Studio:
EMI Studios, Studio Three, Abbey Road

Session Mixing:
Nov 17, 1967
Studio:
EMI Studios, Room 53, Abbey Road


Magical Mystery Tour (Mono)

Official album • Released in 1967

4:36 • Studio versionA2 • Mono made from [A1]

Paul McCartney:
Bass guitar, Tambourine
Ringo Starr:
Drums
John Lennon:
Electric piano, Mellotron, Vocals
George Harrison:
Lead guitar
George Martin:
Producer
Geoff Emerick:
Engineer
Jack Rothstein:
Violin
Ken Scott:
Engineer
Sidney Sax:
Violin
Peggie Allen:
Backing vocals
Wendy Horan:
Backing vocals
Pat Whitmore:
Backing vocals
Jill Utting:
Backing vocals
June Day:
Backing vocals
Sylvia King:
Backing vocals
Irene King:
Backing vocals
G Mallen:
Backing vocals
Fred Lucas:
Backing vocals
Mike Redway:
Backing vocals
John O'Neill:
Backing vocals
F Dachtler:
Backing vocals
Allan Grant:
Backing vocals
D Griffiths:
Backing vocals
J Smith:
Backing vocals
J Fraser:
Backing vocals
Ralph Elman:
Violin
Andrew McGee:
Violin
Jack Greene:
Violin
Louis Stevens:
Violin
John Jezzard:
Violin
Jack Richards:
Violin
Lionel Ross:
Cello
Eldon Fox:
Cello
Bram Martin:
Cello
Terry Weil:
Cello
Gordon Lewin:
Clarinet
Neil Sanders:
Horn
Tony Tunstall:
Horn
Morris Miller:
Horn
Ray Thomas:
Backing vocals
Mike Pinder:
Backing vocals

Session Recording:
Sep 05, 1967
Studio:
EMI Studios, Studio One, Abbey Road

Session Overdubs:
5, 6, 27, 28, 29 Sep 1967
Studio:
EMI Studios, Abbey Road

Session Mixing:
Sep 29, 1967
Studio:
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road


Hello Goodbye / I Am The Walrus

7" Single • Released in 1967

4:33 • Studio versionA

Paul McCartney:
Bass guitar, Tambourine
Ringo Starr:
Drums
John Lennon:
Electric piano, Mellotron, Vocals
George Harrison:
Lead guitar
George Martin:
Producer
Geoff Emerick:
Engineer
Jack Rothstein:
Violin
Ken Scott:
Engineer
Sidney Sax:
Violin
Peggie Allen:
Backing vocals
Wendy Horan:
Backing vocals
Pat Whitmore:
Backing vocals
Jill Utting:
Backing vocals
June Day:
Backing vocals
Sylvia King:
Backing vocals
Irene King:
Backing vocals
G Mallen:
Backing vocals
Fred Lucas:
Backing vocals
Mike Redway:
Backing vocals
John O'Neill:
Backing vocals
F Dachtler:
Backing vocals
Allan Grant:
Backing vocals
D Griffiths:
Backing vocals
J Smith:
Backing vocals
J Fraser:
Backing vocals
Ralph Elman:
Violin
Andrew McGee:
Violin
Jack Greene:
Violin
Louis Stevens:
Violin
John Jezzard:
Violin
Jack Richards:
Violin
Lionel Ross:
Cello
Eldon Fox:
Cello
Bram Martin:
Cello
Terry Weil:
Cello
Gordon Lewin:
Clarinet
Neil Sanders:
Horn
Tony Tunstall:
Horn
Morris Miller:
Horn
Ray Thomas:
Backing vocals
Mike Pinder:
Backing vocals

Session Recording:
Sep 05, 1967
Studio:
EMI Studios, Studio One, Abbey Road

Session Overdubs:
5, 6, 27, 28, 29 Sep 1967
Studio:
EMI Studios, Abbey Road

Session Mixing:
Sep 29, 1967
Studio:
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road


Magical Mystery Tour (Mono)

EP • Released in 1967

4:37 • Studio versionA • Mono

Paul McCartney:
Bass guitar, Tambourine
Ringo Starr:
Drums
John Lennon:
Electric piano, Mellotron, Vocals
George Harrison:
Lead guitar
George Martin:
Producer
Geoff Emerick:
Engineer
Jack Rothstein:
Violin
Ken Scott:
Engineer
Sidney Sax:
Violin
Peggie Allen:
Backing vocals
Wendy Horan:
Backing vocals
Pat Whitmore:
Backing vocals
Jill Utting:
Backing vocals
June Day:
Backing vocals
Sylvia King:
Backing vocals
Irene King:
Backing vocals
G Mallen:
Backing vocals
Fred Lucas:
Backing vocals
Mike Redway:
Backing vocals
John O'Neill:
Backing vocals
F Dachtler:
Backing vocals
Allan Grant:
Backing vocals
D Griffiths:
Backing vocals
J Smith:
Backing vocals
J Fraser:
Backing vocals
Ralph Elman:
Violin
Andrew McGee:
Violin
Jack Greene:
Violin
Louis Stevens:
Violin
John Jezzard:
Violin
Jack Richards:
Violin
Lionel Ross:
Cello
Eldon Fox:
Cello
Bram Martin:
Cello
Terry Weil:
Cello
Gordon Lewin:
Clarinet
Neil Sanders:
Horn
Tony Tunstall:
Horn
Morris Miller:
Horn
Ray Thomas:
Backing vocals
Mike Pinder:
Backing vocals

Session Recording:
Sep 05, 1967
Studio:
EMI Studios, Studio One, Abbey Road

Session Overdubs:
5, 6, 27, 28, 29 Sep 1967
Studio:
EMI Studios, Abbey Road

Session Mixing:
Sep 29, 1967
Studio:
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road


Magical Mystery Tour (Stereo)

EP • Released in 1967

4:36 • Studio versionB • Stereo • Stereo, and mock stereo made from [A]

Paul McCartney:
Bass guitar, Tambourine
Ringo Starr:
Drums
John Lennon:
Electric piano, Mellotron, Vocals
George Harrison:
Lead guitar
George Martin:
Producer
Geoff Emerick:
Engineer
Jack Rothstein:
Violin
Ken Scott:
Engineer
Sidney Sax:
Violin
Peggie Allen:
Backing vocals
Wendy Horan:
Backing vocals
Pat Whitmore:
Backing vocals
Jill Utting:
Backing vocals
June Day:
Backing vocals
Sylvia King:
Backing vocals
Irene King:
Backing vocals
G Mallen:
Backing vocals
Fred Lucas:
Backing vocals
Mike Redway:
Backing vocals
John O'Neill:
Backing vocals
F Dachtler:
Backing vocals
Allan Grant:
Backing vocals
D Griffiths:
Backing vocals
J Smith:
Backing vocals
J Fraser:
Backing vocals
Ralph Elman:
Violin
Andrew McGee:
Violin
Jack Greene:
Violin
Louis Stevens:
Violin
John Jezzard:
Violin
Jack Richards:
Violin
Lionel Ross:
Cello
Eldon Fox:
Cello
Bram Martin:
Cello
Terry Weil:
Cello
Gordon Lewin:
Clarinet
Neil Sanders:
Horn
Tony Tunstall:
Horn
Morris Miller:
Horn
Ray Thomas:
Backing vocals
Mike Pinder:
Backing vocals

Session Recording:
Sep 05, 1967
Studio:
EMI Studios, Studio One, Abbey Road

Session Overdubs:
5, 6, 27, 28, 29 Sep 1967
Studio:
EMI Studios, Abbey Road

Session Mixing:
Nov 06, 1967
Studio:
EMI Studios, Studio Three, Abbey Road

Session Mixing:
Nov 17, 1967
Studio:
EMI Studios, Room 53, Abbey Road


Anthology 2

Official album • Released in 1996

4:02 • OuttakeC • Take 16. Lacking at this juncture the many overdubs and effects that would turn it into perhaps the most compelling master ever issued by the Beatles this is Take 16 of I Am The Walrus, the basic track on to which all the extras were added.

George Martin:
Producer
Geoff Emerick:
Engineer

Session Recording:
Sep 05, 1967
Studio:
EMI Studios, Studio One, Abbey Road


Love

Official album • Released in 2006

4:28 • Studio versionD • Giles Martin: "The guitar from Julia in the transition into "I am the Walrus" is so beautiful and peaceful it seemed to act as a good counterpoint to the madness within the main track. The song is timeless, and it still sounds like nothing else out there today. There was certainly nothing we could add to make it any more psychedelic so we decided to bring the band out a bit more."

George Martin:
Producer
Giles Martin:
Producer
Paul Hicks:
Remix engineer
Sam Okell:
Remix engineer assistant
Chris Bolster:
Remix engineer assistant
Mirek Stiles:
Remix engineer assistant

Session Mixing:
Circa 2004-2006
Studio:
EMI Studios, Abbey Road

Bootlegs


Complete Acetate Collection 1961-1970

Unofficial album

4:34 • Studio version


Complete Controlroom Monitor Mixes - Volume 2

Unofficial album

2:07 • Alternate take • Take 8


Complete Controlroom Monitor Mixes - Volume 2

Unofficial album

5:45 • Alternate take • Take 9


Magical Mystery Tour Sessions

Unofficial album

1:30 • Alternate take • Take 2 partial mono


Magical Mystery Tour Sessions

Unofficial album

1:53 • Alternate take • Take 7 monitor mix mono


Live performances

Paul McCartney has never played this song in concert.


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