Tomorrow Never Knows (Beatles)

6 APRIL 1966

The Beatles started recording their next album 'Revolver' (with George Martin at Abbey Road) on this day in 1966. It had been five months since 'Rubber Soul' was released. Incredibly, they began with the most far-out track on Revolver - 'Tomorrow Never Knows'.

This was completely different from anything they'd ever done before, and was nothing like it had ever been produced by any mainstream act at the time. Compared to most of the stuff in the charts in April 1966, this was a song from the future, and a quantum leap from the material they had done for Rubber Soul. In 1965 the Beatles had smoked a lot of weed. By 1966 the influence of LSD was clear.

Stylistically, 'Tomorrow Never Knows' has been recognised as one of the most important recordings of the decade, opening the door to psychedelia, experimentation, and the Summer of Love. There had been psychedelic stuff around before, but not like this and not from the biggest band in the world. Even the words and heavy theme were new ground for the Beatles.

By now, many of the young fans who loved them for songs like 'She Loves You' were losing interest, but George would have been happy with the mystical overtones and Indian instrumentation in this song, John would have been happy to get really, really, heavy, Paul would have been happy experimenting in the studio, and Ringo would have been happy showing off his drumming chops.

('Revolver' was released in August 1966).