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Case Study: CK’s Long and Winding Road










Those of us collaborating on this website have come across the possibly true story of a man taken into custody in 1981 in the middle of a heavy psychedelic drug overdose, who claimed to be from another Earthly reality. What makes this strange and even a bit wonderful is that the man known only as “CK” recounted in astonishing detail an incredible history where the Beatles managed to stay together until 1975 as a group, and even released a 1981 album under the Beatles’ name after the death of John Lennon.

It’s a small blip in the big scheme of war and peace and life and death, but as a case study it is fascinating, and for fans of the Beatles, it is monumental. This patient recounted the playlists, liner notes and album art for five Beatles albums, released in 1970, 1972, 1974, 1975 and 1981, that simply do not exist in our timeline. Most of the songs do exist in our universe, but only as solo versions recorded by John, Paul, George and Ringo without the Beatles imprimatur. Two unheard of singles exist as well, released in 1971 and 1973.

In addition to these, CK described three songs — “Blasted,” a Lennon piece, “Antelope Lounge” by McCartney and “Stumbling Toward Forever” by Harrison. Unfortunately, none of them have any analog in our universe.



CK began this outpouring of detail in an initial two-hour session on the first day he awoke in the psychiatric facility to which he’d been committed, and over five more sessions in the next three weeks. His accounts were all recorded, transcribed, discussed privately by at least a few fascinated staff members, filed away and largely forgotten. Except that one of these staffers, an orderly who, like CK, insists on complete anonymity, claims to have made copies of the transcriptions without permission. The orderly — we’ll call him “Drew” — kept these papers in his own personal files for decades, showing them only to a handful of close friends and confidantes.

In January 2011, we came into possession of a copy of these papers with the arrival of a digital zip file from an unknown email account that has apparently since been closed. We made efforts to find and contact both CK and Drew, but were never able to do so, and eventually focused our energies here rather than on trying to debunk or confirm the validity of the documents, a decision we’re comfortable with — again, being storytellers rather than scientists or detectives.


The story was strange and compelling. Not only did CK apparently remember in nearly photographic detail these five alternative Beatles albums (and two singles), but he laid out a remarkably convincing case that he actually existed in the world he described to his psychiatric evaluators. CK says he took a large dose of something sold to him as “synthetic peyote” in New York’s Greenwich Village on November 29, 1981 — the one-year anniversary of the 1980 death of John Lennon. While it is true that in our timeline/universe, the date of Lennon’s death is December 8, 1980, CK was emphatic that his date is right and ours is wrong. In any case, CK claimed he then took the R-line subway uptown to Central Park to meet his girlfriend Angie, walked to Strawberry Fields, where they had previously arranged to meet at 4:45PM, and grew agitated when he could not find her.

CK next remembers being restrained by paramedics and taken to an unnamed psychiatric ward. He was upset about Angie’s “disappearance” and extremely concerned that something bad had happened to her. Drew’s photocopied notes indicate CK was “violent” and “manic,” and had to be restrained. He was sedated and interviewed the next morning by a psychiatric resident who diagnosed him as having had a severe psychotic break. CK was suffering, the notes show, from “delusional episodes” with “perseveration,” which means he was uttering words and phrases repeatedly. Many of these had to do with Angie, whom he now feared had been kidnapped or killed by the medical staff in order to get information from him.

Notes from sessions conducted later in the week indicate that no one else in CK’s life, including family members and friends who were contacted, knew of Angie or any other serious romantic relationship in CK’s life. Yet CK was adamant that he and Angie had been going together openly for 20 months and were engaged to be married.

In his psychiatric sessions, CK repeatedly expresses his anxiety over the fact that if he could have brought his albums and cassettes with him, everyone would instantly know the truth of his account. CK also told his psychiatric handlers, who played some of the solo recordings for him as a reality check, that the songs are mostly the same but lack the glorious interplay of the Beatles that he clearly remembered in his mind.

After 41 days in restraint, CK was released from institutionalization and returned to his parents’ care.



While we do not profess to be knowledgeable in a scientific sense, it is true that physicists are more and more convinced that we do not just live in an infinite universe, but we may, in fact, live in just one universe in an infinite multiverse. Each universe, in this theoretical musing, could constantly be fracturing into other universes, and it would be possible to see the Beatles’ decision to break-up or stay together as a deviation point, creating another branch on the tree. Whether that makes us the original universe or the alternative universe depends on one’s point of view and, for our purposes, we see ours as the reality and this other as the alternative.

So, here we are in 2012, with a story about a man unhinged in time and space. It might not rate a second look except that the world he described is a creative gift to us all. This site, then, is dedicated to putting CK’s reality together for others to see. We’ve recreated it to the best of our ability from the extensive notes leaked to us by Drew and from the alleged sessions with the subject himself.

Whether or not CK turns out to be a harbinger of a new way of looking at dimensional reality, his recollections as they have been made available to us certainly give global fans the chance to hear the Beatles’ music in a new way. We present it, then, in the spirit of entertainment, rather than science.

If there are more universes out there, maybe John and George are still alive in one of them, hanging out and jamming with Paul and Ringo. That would be an exciting place to visit.

ART CREDITS: Album cover designs/site design: Lynda Karr; Banner: Beatle Portrait art by Georgina Flood; Last Words: Artwork by Pablo Lobato.
Producer: BRYCE ZABEL • Editor: ERIC ESTRIN • Design Director: LYNDA KARR
These playlists are, for practical and legal purposes, compilations of existing work by John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr, meant for the enjoyment of the listener. They were not — at least in our known universe — recorded together by the Beatles. All music is legitimately licensed through iTunes.

2 Comments on Case Study: CK’s Long and Winding Road

  1. My mind is officially blown. What the hell? Is this actually for real?

    Hell, man, I don’t even care if it’s for real. This blows my mind to the freaking sky!

    • How old are you, Beatlez Fan? Like 12? No this is not real, it’s entertainment. Those songs on iTunes are from Beatles solo records, their best stuff after breakup. Duh!!

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