Sir Paul McCartney Demonstrating His Amazing Mellotron at Abbey Road Studios In 2005

During a live show from Abbey Road Studios in 2005 entitled “Chaos and Creation At Abbey Road“, the great Sir Paul McCartney demonstrated the distinctive sound of the Mellotron, explained how The Beatles used the instrument in such songs as “Strawberry Fields Forever” and shared what he knew about its history.

This is a mellotron, a 60s instrument that was a forerunner of the synthesizer and the idea was that there was its tape loops. It’s like a tape cassette, you play one of the keys and it would play string sounds or a trumpet or flutes. But since I’ve had it in my studio I’ve been trying to work out you know what they originally made them for and I think it might have been to sell them to places like cabarets, so you wouldn’t have to pay a band you know.

In 1963, Mellotron inventors Eric Robinson and David Nixon demonstrated how to play the instrument.

Lori Dorn
Lori Dorn

Lori is a Laughing Squid Contributing Editor based in New York City who has been writing blog posts for over a decade. She also enjoys making jewelry, playing guitar, taking photos and mixing craft cocktails. Lori can be found posting on Threads and sharing photos on Instagram.