Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Long, Long, Long Time

I was awakened on a walk on my break by my Zune, or more correctly by what my Zune was playing. Usually, I hit play and get songs at random. I sometimes skip songs, I sometimes jump to albums or artists after I get into something. When it popped out of nowhere, "Long, Long, Long" in mono was a revelation to me. Recently both the stereo and mono versions of the British albums have been released in spectacular clarity and quality. There are many instances in the mono mixes where I find the songs more soothing and listenable. In the first albums many songs are jarring as the only stereo mix is one where mostly the vocals are on one side and the instruments on the other. There are also later songs I feel were simply mixed badly for stereo where there are problems with changing vocals from center to side, or a guitar track is panned in some way.

But the mono version of  "Long, Long, Long" on the white album was really an awakening. The vocals, the sound, it was a different song in this mix. Next I tried out "Helter Skelter," again another entirely different mix that astounded me. The vocals were right out there. Next I listened to the stereo version of "Long, Long, Long" for comparison. In my opinion, while it is prettier in stereo and has more haunting instrumentation, the mono version is the one I now like the best. It is just a better rock song this way.

When I first received  the 2009 remixes in Stereo and the remixes in Mono as a gift, I was so overwhelmed with the amount of music that I decided to go album by album. I found this quite interesting for a while, studying each album as if it were the only album I owned. Then as time went on I found I was being a little too analytical, and while it was wonderful for the early albums I decided to listen to the rest haphazardly, waiting for the inspiring moment. "Long, Long, Long" was that moment. What an awesome rendition. Outtakes are fun to listen to and every once in a while they are revelationary in some point (say the extra verse in "While My Guitar Gently Weeps." But the mono "Long, Long, Long" is an original, released and meant to be heard. It's a more happy song in mono.

It's been a long long long time since I appreciated this song so much.

It's been a long, long, long time.
How could I ever have lost you?
When I loved you.
It took a long, long, long time.
Now I'm so happy I found you.
How I love you.
Lyrics: George Harrison, Vocals: George Harrison and Paul McCartney