Yoko Ono Fly.jpg
Studio album by
Released21 September 1971 (1971-09-21)
ProducerJohn Lennon, Yoko Ono
Yoko Ono chronology
Yoko Ono/Plastic Ono Band
Some Time in New York City
Singles from Fly
  1. "Mrs. Lennon"
    Released: 29 September 1971 (US); 29 October 1971 (UK)
  2. "Mind Train"
    Released: 21 January 1972 (UK)

Fly is the second album by Yoko Ono, released in 1971. Co-produced by Ono and John Lennon, the original release was a complete avant-garde/Fluxus package in a gatefold sleeve that came with a full-size poster and a postcard to order Ono's 1964 book Grapefruit. Notable songs include the singles "Midsummer New York" and "Mrs. Lennon", "Hirake" (a.k.a. "Open Your Box") and "Don't Worry, Kyoko (Mummy's Only Looking for Her Hand in the Snow)", that was dedicated to Ono's daughter Kyoko Cox. "Airmale", that benefits from the automated noise music machines of Fluxus musician Joe Jones, is the soundtrack to Lennon's film Erection, showing a building being erected in time lapsed photography,[2] while "Fly" is the soundtrack to Lennon and Ono's 1970 film Fly. The entire side three of this LP has Ono performing with various automated sound-machines created by Joe Jones pictured in the gatefold.


The album was recorded around the same time as Lennon's Imagine.[2] Ono had to re-record her vocals on "Open Your Box", on 4 March 1971 at Abbey Road Studios, after a managing director of EMI called the lyrics "distasteful".[2] In the verse "Open your trousers, open your skirt, open your legs and open your thighs",[2] the words "Trousers", "skirt", "legs", and "thighs" were changed to "houses", "church", "lakes", and "eyes".[2] Lennon and Ono didn't complain about the change of words, and only "wanted to get the record out", as a spokesman said.[2]

"Will You Touch Me" was first recorded during the Fly sessions. It was later re-recorded for Yoko's shelved 1974 album A Story and for 1981's Season of Glass. The original demo version was included on the Rykodisc reissue of Fly in 1997.[2]

Each edition of the US, UK and Japanese albums utilized that country's distinctive telephone ring in the track "Telephone Piece" (i.e. each edition of the album used entirely different recordings) – the Rykodisc CD edition used the US variation.


Fly peaked at number 199 in the Billboard charts. On 1 February 1972, Lennon and Ono Lennon performed "Midsummer New York" backed by Elephant's Memory for an episode of The Mike Douglas Show, which aired on 15 February.[2]


Professional ratings
Review scores
Allmusic [3]
Rolling Stone(not rated) [5]
Spill [6]

The album was a significant influence to British power electronics musician William Bennett of Whitehouse fame.[7]

Track listing

All songs written by Yoko Ono.

Side one

  1. "Midsummer New York" – 3:50
  2. "Mind Train" – 16:52

Side two

  1. "Mind Holes" – 2:45
  2. "Don't Worry, Kyoko (Mummy's Only Looking for Her Hand in the Snow)" – 4:55
  3. "Mrs. Lennon" – 4:10
  4. "Hirake" (previously released as "Open Your Box") – 3:32
  5. "Toilet Piece/Unknown" – 0:30
  6. "O'Wind (Body Is the Scar of Your Mind)" – 5:22

Side three

  1. "Airmale" – 10:40
  2. "Don't Count the Waves" – 5:26
  3. "You" – 9:00

Side four

  1. "Fly" – 22:53
  2. "Telephone Piece" – 0:33
1997 reissue bonus tracks
6."Between the Takes"1:58
7."Will You Touch Me" (Demo)2:45
2017 reissue bonus tracks (previously released on Onobox)
8."The Path"5:43
9."Head Play" (Medley: You/Airmale/Fly)2:35

For unknown reasons, John Lennon was credited as co-writer of "Mind Train", "Mind Holes", "Toilet Piece/Unknown" and "Telephone Piece" on the disc faces of the 1997 Rykodisc reissue.[8] Lennon has not been credited as co-writer of these tracks on any other release of Fly.



Chart (1971) Peak
U.S. Billboard 200 199 2

Release history

Country Date Format Label Catalog
United States 21 September 1971[9] 2xLP Apple Records SVBB 3380[10]
2x8-Track 8VV 3380[11]
United Kingdom 13 December 1971[9] 2xLP SAPTU 101/102[12]
Japan 1971 AP-93021B [13]
United States 10 June 1997[14] 2xCD Rykodisc RCD 10415/16[15]
United Kingdom 1997
Japan VACK-5371/2[16]
24 January 2007 Rykodisc, Apple Records VACK-1309[17]
United States & Europe 14 July 2017 2xLP Secretly Canadian, Chimera Music SC282/CHIM21[18]
2xLP (White)[18]
Japan 2 August 2017 2xCD Sony Records International SICX-84[20]
9 August 2017 2xLP (White) SIJP-49[21]


  1. ^ Doran, John (May 2010). "Yoko Ono: Naked Ambition". The Stilo Pigeon. Retrieved 29 November 2020.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h Miles, Barry; Badman, Keith, eds. (2001). The Beatles Diary After the Break-Up: 1970–2001 (reprint ed.). London: Music Sales Group. ISBN 978-0-7119-8307-6.
  3. ^ Fly at AllMusic
  4. ^ Masters, Marc (14 July 2017). "Yoko Ono: Fly / Approximately Infinite Universe / Feeling the Space Album Review". Pitchfork. Retrieved 15 July 2017.
  5. ^ Ferris, Tim (9 December 1971). "Fly | Album Reviews". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 3 October 2012.
  6. ^ Badgley, Aaron (2017). "Spill Album Review: Yoko Ono – Fly (Reissue)". Spill. Retrieved 12 April 2020.
  7. ^ Bennett, William (18 March 2008). "CLUSTER #2". Archived from the original on 1 October 2021. Retrieved 1 October 2021.
  8. ^ Fly (Media notes). Yoko Ono. Rykodisc. 1997. RCD 10415/6.((cite AV media notes)): CS1 maint: others in cite AV media (notes) (link)
  9. ^ a b Onobox (liner notes). Yoko Ono. Rykodisc. 1992. RCD 10224/29.((cite AV media notes)): CS1 maint: others in cite AV media (notes) (link)
  10. ^ "Yoko Ono – Fly (1971, Vinyl)" – via
  11. ^ "Yoko Ono – Fly (1971, 8-Track Cartridge)" – via
  12. ^ "Yoko Ono – Fly (1971, Vinyl)" – via
  13. ^ "Yoko Ono – Fly (1971, Vinyl)" – via
  14. ^ Kaufman, Gil. "Ready Or Not: Yoko Ono Albums To Be Reissued". MTV News.
  15. ^ "Yoko Ono With Plastic Ono Band – Fly (1997, CD)" – via
  16. ^ "Yoko Ono – Fly (1997, CD)" – via
  17. ^ "Fly [Cardboard Sleeve] [Limited Release] Yoko Ono CD Album". CDJapan.
  18. ^ a b "Yoko Ono With Plastic Ono Band – Fly (2017, White, Vinyl)" – via
  19. ^ "Yoko Ono With Plastic Ono Band – Fly (2017, CD)" – via
  20. ^ "Fly Yoko Ono CD Album". CDJapan.
  21. ^ "Fly [Limited Release] Yoko Ono Vinyl (LP)". CDJapan.