Digital download: Jealous Guy
Imagine was released in late 1971, his second solo record, following John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band. This is a repackaged double LP offering from the former Beatle which is a huge attraction for many fans.
Most of the songs he laid down demonstrated an impassioned approach, more "hearts-on-his-sleeve" than the previous release.
This new packaging makes a great album even more enticing with the original LP accompanied by a second record containing demos and works-in-progress versions of the 10 songs on Imagine.
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The musicians he corralled in for these sessions made a major contribution in creating faultless versions of what was a high quality clutch of new John Lennon compositions.
George Harrison played guitar or Dobro on five tracks, Klaus Voormann delivered rock-steady bass lines, and you couldn't get better drummers than Jim Keltner, Jim Gordon or Alan White. Add in the likes of Nicky Hopkins on piano and King Curtis on sax, and it's no wonder that the production and sound are top class.
There was obviously a good in studio vibe between Lennon and his uber-talented bandmates. Phil Spector assisted as co-producer but Lennon never left any doubt about who was in charge.
Obviously the title track is the star of the show, but there are other stand-out songs as well. Jealous Guy, later a hit for Roxy Music, I Don't Wanna Be a Solider, Gimme Some Truth, Oh My Love, and of course his angry message to fellow Beatle, Paul MacCartney How Do You Sleep.
This is high quality John Lennon, topped off by the second LP called The Out-Takes. A conflicted songwriter with a red hot band supporting his own one-of-a-kind vocals.
With upgraded production and the alternative versions to dig into Imagine is almost too good to be true. But it is, good, that is.