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It all started with a man named Tom.

In the fall of 1969, a Michigan DJ named Russ Gibb received a phone call from an Eastern Michigan student - our hero "Tom", now known to be one Tom Zarski. Tom had an interesting theory, and Russ put him on the air to spread it.

Tom told Gibb to put on The Beatles' White Album and play "Revolution 9". About 7 seconds in, he told him to stop it and run the record backwards, very slowly. Gibb complied, and out came the phrase.

Turn me on, dead man

Turn me on, dead man? Gibb played it again, more slowly, and confirmed it. But what did it mean?

Tom had the answer. "Put on 'Strawberry Fields Forever' now." Curiosity begged. "Skip to the end, the instruments fading. Turn up the volume. Do you hear it? Do you hear it?"

Russ Gibb, without any provocation from Tom, heard it. The words said I buried Paul (or was it "cranberry sauce"?).

And then Tom put it together in one sentence, a sentence that drove music fans crazy in search of a long-held and possibly nonexistent conspiracy by the most popular rock group of our time: "I think Paul is dead."

Though certainly no one takes the claim too seriously (Macca himself only has a thing or two to say about it), it did generate a lot of publicity in 1969, publicity which continues to this day, resulting in a number of websites, magazine articles, and of course, books, including perhaps the definitive "Paul is dead" treatise ...

Title? Turn Me On, Dead Man, natch.

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