BEATLES SONGS TRIVIA
John William Tuohy
Across The Universe John Lennon wrote this song after having an argument with his wife Cynthia. He said, "I was l ying next to me first wife in bed, and I was irritated. She must have been going on and on about something and she'd gone to sleep and I kept hearing these words over and over, flowing like an endless stream. I went downstairs and it turned into sort of a cosmic song rather than an irritated song... it drove me out of bed. I didn't want to write it, but I was slightly irritable and I went downstairs and I couldn't get to sleep until I'd put it on paper." The refrain "Jai Guru Deva Om" is a mantra intended to lull the mind into a higher consciousness. The words are in Sanskrit, and they mean "I give thanks to Guru Dev," who was the teacher of The Maharishi. The "Om" at the end is the drawn out "oooohm" used in meditation to relate to the natural vibration of the universe. (While visiting the Maharishi in Rishikesh, John purchased a set of brass bracelets with the words "Jai Guru Dev" imprinted on them)
A Day in The Life by The Beatles took a 41 piece orchestra to complete the recording. The musicians were told to attend the session dressed formally. When they got there, they were presented with party novelties (false noses, party hats, gorilla-paw glove) to wear, which made it clear this was not going to be a typical session. The orchestra was conducted by Paul McCartney, who told them to start with the lowest note of their instruments and gradually play to the highest. It was finally recorded in 3 sessions: First the basic track, then the orchestra, then the last note was dubbed in. The beginning of this song was based on 2 stories John Lennon read in the Daily Mail newspaper: Guinness heir Tara Browne dying when he smashed his lotus into a parked van, and an article in the UK Daily Express in early 1967 which told of how the Blackburn Roads Surveyor had counted 4000 holes in the roads of Blackburn and commented that the volume of material needed to fill them in was enough to fill the Albert Hall. Lennon took some liberties with the Tara Browne story - he changed it so he Blew his mind out in the car. “I didn't copy the accident.” Lennon said “Tara didn't blow his mind out. But it was in my mind when I was writing that verse. At the time, Paul didn't realize the reference was to Tara. He thought it was about a stoned politician.” John's friend Terry Doran was the one who completed John's line Now they know how many holes it takes to fill... Terry told him fill the Albert Hall, John. McCartney contributed the line I'd love to turn you on. This was a drug reference, but the BBC banned it for the line about having a smoke and going into a dream, which they thought was about marijuana and McCartney's middle section (Woke up, got out of bed...) was intended for another song. The final chord was produced by all 4 Beatles and George Martin banging on 3 pianos simultaneously. As the sound diminished, the engineer boosted to faders. The resulting note lasts 42 seconds, and the studio air conditioners can be heard toward the end as the faders were pushed to the limit to record it.
Ain't She Sweet was written by Milton Ager who wrote it for his daughter Shana Ager, who in her adult life was known as the political commentator Shana Alexander.
All My Loving Paul McCartney wrote the lyrics while shaving. He said, "It was the first song I'd ever written the words first. I never wrote words first, it was always some kind of accompaniment. I've hardly ever done it since either." The lyrics follow the "letter song" model as used on "P.S. I Love You"
All You Need Is Love" was first performed by The Beatles on Our World, the first live global television link. Watched by 400 million in 26 countries the program was broadcast via satellite on June 25, 1967. The BBC had commissioned The Beatles to write a song for the United Kingdom's contribution, a song containing a simple message to be understood by all nationalities. "It was an inspired song and they really wanted to give the world a message," said Brian Epstein. "The nice thing about it is that it cannot be misinterpreted. It is a clear message saying that love is everything." According to journalist Jade Wright, "Lennon was fascinated by the power of slogans to unite people and never afraid to create art out of propaganda. When asked in 1971 whether songs like "Give Peace a Chance" and "Power to the People" were propaganda songs, he answered: 'Sure. So was All You Need Is Love. I'm a revolutionary artist. My art is dedicated to change.'"
All I've Got To Do "That's me” John Lennon said “trying to do Smokey Robinson again." This particular song was inspired by the Miracles song "You Can Depend on Me."
And Your Bird Can Sing by The Beatles. Lennon wrote this about Mick Jaggers pop-star girlfriend ("bird" in British Isles slang) Marianne Faithfull.
And I love her. Paul McCartney said "It's just a love song; no, it wasn't for anyone." The Beatles recorded this song at the end of February 1964, in the week after returning from the United States and before the start of filming their movie A Hard Day's Night, where they perform the song. The take you hear on record is Take 21.
Another Girl Paul McCartney wrote this while on a 10 day vacation in Tunisia where he also wrote Anytime at all.
Baby's in Black is are about Astrid Kirchherr, a friend and photographer The Beatles met during their first trip to Hamburg. She was Stuart Sutcliffe's fiancée and was distraught over his then recent death.
Baby your rich man. Lennon and McCartney wrote parts of this separately and combined it to make one song - something they would repeat on "A Day in the Life." At one point, the song was called "One of The Beautiful People." It was rumored that The Beatles sang "Baby you're a rich fag Jew" as a slur to their manager, Brian Epstein. Mick Jagger sang backup and Brian Jones, the guitarist from The Rolling Stones, played an oboe on this. A few years earlier, Lennon and McCartney gave The Stones a song called "I Wanna Be Your Man," which was one of their first hits, and helped convince Mick Jagger and Keith Richards that they should write their own songs. Lennon played clavioline and piano on the song and George Harrison played tambourine. There is actually no guitar on this song at all. Paul played bass and piano as well.
Back in the U.S.S.R. Mike Love from the Beach Boys was sitting in a hotel lobby when Paul McCartney came down for breakfast. The two of them chatted for a while, and Love suggested that The Beatles incorporate a little bit of a Beach Boy sound in a song, "Like we did in California Girls." McCartney was impressed with the idea and used some Beach Boys' elements in this song: Instead of "California Girls" it was "Moscow Girls." Plus, the definitive Beach Boy "Oooeeeeoooo" in the background harmonies. The title was inspired by Chuck Berry's "Back In The U.S.A." McCartney said "In my mind it's just about a (Russian) spy who's been in America for a long time and he's become very American but when he gets back to the USSR he's saying, 'Leave it 'til tomorrow to unpack my case, Honey, disconnect the phone.' and all that, but to Russian women." Things were tense when they were working on this album, and Ringo walked out during recording, briefly quitting the band. Paul McCartney played drums in his place. On August 22, 1968, following an argument with McCartney over the drum part for this song, Ringo walked out on The Beatles. He flew to Sardinia for a holiday to consider his future. While there he received a telegram from his band mates saying, 'You're the best rock 'n' roll drummer in the world. Come on home, we love you.' On his return, he found his drum kit covered with flowers. A banner above read, 'Welcome Back.'
Because is a ballad written by John Lennon. It features a 3-part harmony vocal performance between Lennon, McCartney and George Harrison, overdubbed three times to make nine voices in all. The results of this have been compared in sound to the Beach Boys. According to Lennon, "Because" was inspired by Ludwig van Beethoven's "Moonlight Sonata". "Yoko was playing Beethoven's 'Moonlight Sonata' on the piano ... I said, 'Can you play those chords backwards?', and wrote 'Because' around them. The lyrics speak for themselves ... No imagery, no obscure references."
Birthday said Paul McCartney “We had a few friends around and it was one of our party's birthday, can't remember who. Pattie Boyd was there, Terry Dolan, just a few mates. Normally we didn't have friends around to sessions so it was very unusual. We didn't know what song to do so we decided to make one up. We did what Roy Orbison had done with 'Pretty Woman' and Little Richard had started with 'Lucille,' do-do do-do do-do do-do; Roy Orbison goes, do-do do-do DO-DO DO-DO- he just changes the end a little bit. We changed basically the same riff of Lucille and Pretty Woman into Birthday- do-do do-do do-do do-do…'You say it's your birthday.'" Pattie Harrison and Yoko Ono sang in the chorus.
Black bird was inspired by J.S. Bach's Bourrée in E minor, a lute piece, often played on the classical guitar. As children, McCartney and George Harrison tried to learn Bourrée as a "show off" piece. Bourrée is distinguished by melody and bass notes played simultaneously on the upper and lower strings. McCartney adapted a segment of Bourrée as the opening of "Blackbird," and carried the musical idea throughout the song. The song was also said to be a tribute to the 1960s radical group, the Black Panthers.
Blue Jay Way was written by George Harrison. The name of the song comes from a street, located high in the Hollywood Hills overlooking Sunset Boulevard, which affords panoramic views of Hollywood and much of the Los Angeles Basin. It is reached from downtown Los Angeles via a complicated street route, which is all the harder to navigate on a foggy night — thus creating the backdrop for the opening lines of the song: "There's a fog upon LA. And my friends have lost their way." According to Harrison "Derek Taylor got held up. He rang to say he'd be late. I told him on the phone that the house was in Blue Jay Way. And he said he could find it OK... he could always ask a cop. So I waited and waited. I felt really knackered with the flight, but I didn't want to go to sleep until he came. There was a fog and it got later and later. To keep myself awake, just as a joke to pass the time while I waited, I wrote a song about waiting for him in Blue Jay Way. There was a little Hammond organ in the corner of this house which I hadn't noticed until then... so I messed around on it and the song came."
Can't Buy Me Love was recorded on January 29, 1964 in Paris and held the top 5 positions on the charts on April 4, 1964.
Carry that weight: Paul McCartney wrote this about his struggle to keep the Beatles together after Brian Epstein's death. Epstein died from a sleeping pill overdose in 1967. McCartney took over most of The Beatles' business affairs, and gained a greater respect for what Epstein went through. It is part of a suite of songs at the end of Abbey Road made up of bits of unfinished songs strung together.
Cold Turkey was written by John Lennon, released as a single in 1969 by the Plastic Ono Band on Apple Records. According to Peter Brown in his book The Love You Make, the song was written in a "creative outburst" following Lennon and Ono going "cold turkey" from their brief heroin addictions. Brown also states that Lennon presented the song to Paul McCartney as a potential single by The Beatles, but was refused and released it as a Plastic Ono Band single with sole writing credit to him.
"Come together" by The Beatles and reached the top of the charts. Lennon was inspired by Timothy Leary's gubernatorial campaign for governor of California titled "Come together, join the party" against Ronald Reagan, which promptly ended when Leary was sent to prison for possession of marijuana. It has been speculated that each verse refers cryptically to each of The Beatles (e.g. "he's one holy roller" allegedly refers to the spiritually inclined George Harrison; "he got monkey finger, he shoot Coca-Cola" to Ringo, the funny Beatle; "he got Ono sideboard, he one spinal cracker" to Lennon himself; and "got to be good-looking 'cause he's so hard to see" to Paul. John Lennon said "The thing was created in the studio. It's gobbledygook. 'Come Together' was an expression that Tim Leary had come up with for (perhaps for the governorship of California against Reagan), and he asked me to write a campaign song. I tried and I tried, but I couldn't come up with one. But I came up with this, 'Come Together,' which would've been no good to him - you couldn't have a campaign song like that, right?"
Cry baby cry: The song was based in part by two nursery rhymes, "Sing A Song 0f Sixpence" and "Cry, baby, cry...stick a finger in your eye...etc. John Lennon said he got the title for the song from an advertisement. ("Cry, baby cry. Make your mother buy.") The song was begun in Rishikesh, India when the Beatles were staying with the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. In the song, John mentions the "Duchess of Kircaldy." Kircaldy is in Fife, Scotland and when he was young, Kircaldy was a stop that John always made when in route to visit his relations in Durness. The Beatles also performed in Kircaldy in their early years. At the very end of the song, there is a conversation between George Martin and Alistair Taylor.
Alistair Taylor: "bottle of claret for you if I'd realized. I'd forgotten all about it George, I'm sorry..."
George Martin: "Well, do next time"
Alistair: "Will you forgive me"?
Alistair: "cheeky bitch."
Day Tripper was released as a double A-side single with "We Can Work It Out". Under the pressure of needing a new single for the Christmas market, John Lennon wrote most of the lyrics and the famous guitar hook, while Paul McCartney helped with the verses. "Day Tripper" was a typical play on words by Lennon: "Day trippers are people who go on a day trip, right? Usually on a ferryboat or something. But [the song] was kind of . . . you're just a weekend hippie. Get it?" he later added "That's mine. (The song) Including the lick, the guitar break and the whole bit."
Dear Prudence is about actress Mia Farrow's sister, Prudence Farrow who was present when The Beatles went to India to study with Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. Farrow became so serious about her meditation that she "turned into a near recluse" and "rarely came out" of the cottage she was living in. Someone asked John Lennon to "contact her and make sure she came out more often to socialize". As a result, Lennon wrote the song Dear Prudence. In the song Lennon asks Farrow to "open up your eyes" and "see the sunny skies" reminding her that she is "part of everything". The song was said to be "a simple plea to a friend to 'snap out of it'". Lennon said later that "She'd been locked in for three weeks and was trying to reach God quicker than anyone else". According to Farrow: "I would always rush straight back to my room after lectures and meals so I could meditate. John, George and Paul would all want to sit around jamming and having a good time and I'd be flying into my room. They were all serious about what they were doing, but they just weren't as fanatical as me". Lennon did not play the song for Farrow while they were in India together. Farrow later said "George was the one who told me about it" as Lennon and Harrison were leaving the ashram. According to Farrow, "I was flattered. It was a beautiful thing to have done" The lyrics of the song are simple and innocent and praise the beauty of nature in the lines: "The sun is up, the sky is blue, it's beautiful, and so are you".
Dig a Pony was originally called "All I Want Is You". Lennon would later comment that he thought the song was "a piece of garbage," though he has shown similar scorn for many of his songs. It was written for his soon-to-be wife Yoko Ono, and featured a multitude of strange, seemingly nonsense phrases which were strung together, culminating in the chorus "All I want is you", aimed at Yoko. American copies of Let It Be mistitled this song as "I Dig a Pony."
Doctor Robert by The Beatles. Lennon said that Doctor Robert was himself, "I was the one who carried all the pills on tour ... in the early days".
Don't Pass Me By was Ringo Starr’s first solo composition. "Don't Pass Me By", it was called "Ringo's Tune (Untitled)" The line "I'm sorry that I doubted you, I was so unfair, You were in a car crash and you lost your hair" is cited by proponents of the Paul is dead urban legend as a clue to McCartney's fate; the line "you lost your hair" is claimed to be a reference to "When I'm Sixty-Four", which McCartney wrote. However, the expression "to lose one's hair" was a fairly common English idiom, it simply means "to become anxious or upset."
Don't Bother Me is the first song written by George Harrison to appear on an album by The Beatles. Harrison wrote the song while sick in bed at a hotel room in Bournemouth, England where The Beatles were playing some shows during the summer of 1963. Harrison never regarded it highly, stating on one occasion, "It was a fairly crappy song. I forgot all about it completely once it was on the album." He considered it an exercise in whether he could write a song, later saying, "at least it showed me that all I needed to do was keep on writing, and then maybe eventually I would write something good."
Do You Want to Know a Secret? was the first top ten song to feature George Harrison as a lead. The song was inspired by "I'm Wishing", a tune from Walt Disney’s 1937 animated film Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs which Lennon's mother, Julia Lennon, would sing to him as a child. The first two lines of the song in Disney's movie ("Want to know a secret? Promise not to tell?") come right after the opening lyrics ("You'll never know how much I really love you... You'll never know how much I really care..."). Lennon said that he gave "Do You Want to Know a Secret?" to Harrison to sing because "it only had three notes and he wasn't the best singer in the world," but added "he has improved a lot since then." The song was recorded during a ten-hour session on 11 February 1963 along with nine other songs.
Drive My Car" is a song primarily written by Paul McCartney, with lyrical contributions from John Lennon. According to McCartney, "'Drive my car' was an old blues euphemism for sex". McCartney also described the song (along with "Norwegian Wood", also from Rubber Soul) as a "comedy number" in Melody Maker two days after the song's recording.
Eleanor Rigby - (Released on the B-side to Yellow Submarine) Paul McCartney said he came up with the name Eleanor (of Eleanor Rigby) from actress Eleanor Bron, who had starred with The Beatles in the film Help!. Rigby came from the name of a store in Bristol, Rigby & Evens Ltd, Wine & Spirit Shippers that he noticed while seeing his then-girlfriend Jane Asher act in The Happiest Days Of Your Life. He recalled in 1984, "I just liked the name. I was looking for a name that sounded natural. Eleanor Rigby sounded natural." In the 1980s, a grave of an Eleanor Rigby was found in the cemetery of St. Peter's Parish Church in Woolton, Liverpool, and a few yards away from that, another tombstone with the last name McKenzie scrawled across it. During their teenage years, McCartney and Lennon spent time sunbathing there, within earshot of where the two had met for the first time during a fete in 1957. Many years later McCartney stated that the strange coincidence between reality and lyric could be a product of his subconscious, rather than being a meaningless fluke. The actual Eleanor Rigby was born in 1895 and lived in Liverpool, possibly in the suburb of Woolton, where she married a man named Thomas Woods. She died on October 10 1939 at age 44. Whether this Eleanor was the inspiration for the song or not, her tombstone has become a landmark to Beatles fans visiting Liverpool. In June 1990, McCartney donated a document dating from 1911 which had been signed by the 16-year-old Eleanor Rigby to Sunbeams Music Trust, instantly attracting significant international interest from collectors because of the significance and provenance of the document. The nearly 100-year-old document was sold at auction in November 2008 for ($250,000. The Daily Telegraph reported that the uncovered document "is a 97-year-old salary register from Liverpool City Hospital." The name E. Rigby is printed on the register, and she is identified as a scullery maid.
Everybody's Got Something to Hide Except Me and My Monkey is a song written by John Lennon who said "That was just a sort of nice line that I made into a song. It was about me and Yoko. Everybody seemed to be paranoid except for us two, who were in the glow of love. Everything is clear and open when you're in love. Everybody was sort of tense around us: You know, 'What is she doing here at the session? Why is she with him?' All this sort of madness is going on around us because we just happened to want to be together all the time. "The song's title is the longest of any in The Beatles' catalogue, and it originates from a quote by the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, however, as for the "... except me and my monkey" part, George Harrison attested that he did not "know where that came from" though McCartney believes it was a reference to Lennon's heroin habit.
Fixing a Hole In a 1967 interview, Paul McCartney said the following lines were about those fans who hung around outside his door day and night and whose actions put him off. According to his diaries, Mal Evans (an assistant to The Beatles) may have made some contribution to the writing the song as well.
For No One is a baroque pop song about the end of a relationship it, was one of McCartney's most mature and poignant works. John Lennon said "It’s one of my favorites of his—a nice piece of work." McCartney recalls writing "For No One" in the bathroom of a ski resort in the Swiss Alps while on vacation with his then girlfriend Jane Asher. He said, "I suspect it was about another argument." The song's working title was "Why Did It Die?". The French horn solo was by Alan Civil, a British horn player described by Geoff Emerick as the "best horn player in London" During the session McCartney pushed Civil to play a note that was beyond the usual range of the instrument. According to Emerick, the result was the "performance of his life".
For You Blue working title was "George's Blues (Because You're Sweet and Lovely)" when it was recorded on 25 January 1969. It was renamed "For You Blue" Lennon can be heard on the session tapes reading this title off a list of songs The Beatles had been working on, and dialogue suggests that this was an error in writing and the title was actually meant to be "For You Blues". When Phil Spector remixed the song for inclusion on the Let It Be album, he added an introduction by Lennon, "Queen says no to pot-smoking FBI members." This comment was edited in from dialogue recorded at Twickenham Studios in early January 1969, long before "For You Blue" was recorded.
From me to you was the Beatles' first number one in some of the United Kingdom charts, second in others, but failed to make an impact in the United States at the time of its initial release. However, a 1963 cover version released by Del Shannon resulted in the song becoming the first Lennon/McCartney tune to enter the American pop chart. It was one of the very last songs to be credited "McCartney/Lennon"; soon afterwards their songs began appearing credited to "Lennon/McCartney". Lennon and McCartney began writing "From Me to You" while on a train heading to Shrewsbury as part of the Beatles' tour with British singer Helen Shapiro. Lennon recalled “We were writing it in a car I think, and I think the first line was mine. I mean I know it was mine. [Hums melody of first line.] And then after that we took it from there. It was far bluesier than that when we wrote it. The notes—today you could rearrange it pretty funky."
Get Back grew out of some unstructured jamming during rehearsal sessions. McCartney reworked "Get back to the place you should be" from fellow Beatle George Harrison's "Sour Milk Sea" into "Get back to where you once belonged". McCartney wrote, "We were sitting in the studio and we made it up out of thin air... we started to write words there and then...when we finished it, we recorded it at Apple Studios and made it into a song to roller-coast by. At the beginning of the Let It Be version of the song, Lennon can be heard jokingly singing "Sweet Loretta Fart, she thought she was a cleaner, but she was a frying pan." The album version of the song also ends with John Lennon quipping "I'd like to say thank you on behalf of the group and ourselves, and I hope we passed the audition". (Originally John said that at the end of the rooftop concert, but Phil Spector edited it into the "Get Back" song on the Let It Be album.) John Lennon in 1980 claimed that "there's some underlying thing about Yoko in there", claiming that McCartney looked at Yoko Ono in the studio every time he sang "Get back to where you once belonged."
Getting Better title and music suggest optimism, but some of the song's lyrics have a more negative tone. In this sense, it reflects the contrasting personas of the two songwriters. In response to McCartney's line, "It's getting better all the time", Lennon replies, "It can't get no worse!" Referring to the lyric "I used to be cruel to my woman/I beat her and kept her apart from the things that she loved/Man I was mean but I'm changing my scene/And I'm doing the best that I can ", Lennon admitted that he had done things in relationships in the past that he was not happy about. The idea for the song's title came from a phrase often spoken by Jimmie Nicol, the group's stand-in drummer for the Australian leg of a 1964 tour. One of the recording sessions for "Getting Better" is famous for an incident involving Lennon. During the 21 March 1967 session in which producer George Martin added a piano solo to Lovely Rita, Lennon complained that he did not feel well and could not focus. He had accidentally taken LSD when he meant to take an upper. Unaware of the mistake, Martin took him up to the roof of Abbey Road Studio for some fresh air, and returned to Studio Two where McCartney and Harrison were waiting. They knew why Lennon was not well, and upon hearing where Lennon was, rushed to the roof to retrieve him and prevent a possible accident.
Girl was, according to Paul McCartney, a dig at the Roman Catholic Church. Wow, an Englishman who doesn’t like the Catholic Church, go figure.
Glass Onion was written by John Lennon after he went swimming in his pool wearing a diver’s mask AKA a glass onion because of its shape. "The Walrus was Paul" lyric is both a reference to "I Am the Walrus" and Lennon saying "something nice to Paul" in response to changes in their relationship at that time Later, the line was interpreted as a "clue" in the "Paul is dead" urban legend that alleged McCartney died in 1966 during the recording of Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band and was replaced by a look-alike and sound-alike. The line is preceded with "Well, here's another clue for you all." Lennon himself dismissed any deep meaning to the mysterious lyrics “I threw the line in—'the Walrus was Paul'—just to confuse everybody a bit more. It could have been 'The fox terrier is Paul.' I mean, it's just a bit of poetry. I was having a laugh because there'd been so much gobbledygook about Pepper—play it backwards and you stand on your head and all that.”
Golden Slumbers" is a song by The Beatles and is based on the poem "Cradle Song", a lullaby by the dramatist Thomas Dekker. The poem appears in Dekker's 1603 comedy Patient Grissel. McCartney saw sheet music for Dekker's lullaby at his father's home in Liverpool, left on a piano by his stepsister Ruth McCartney. Unable to read music, he created his own melody and arrangement. McCartney uses only the first four lines of the original poem, with minor word changes.
Good Morning Good Morning inspiration came to Lennon from a television commercial for Kellogg's Corn Flakes. The jingle went: "Good morning, good morning, The best to you each morning, Sunshine Breakfast, Kellogg's Corn Flakes, Crisp and full of fun". The line "It's time for tea and Meet the Wife" refers to a BBC sitcom, Meet the Wife.
The Beatles Happiness Is A Warm Gun took its title from an article in a gun magazine John Lennon saw. (Happiness Is A Warm Gun was the slogan of the National Rifle Association.) The song took 15 hours and over 100 takes to nail. The first half of one take was combined with the second half of another to form the complete song. Lennon felt that a song must have increasing excitement, climax and redemption and built the tune from pieces of several different little songs, with different melodies and rhythms, and one after another, the excitement is increasing. The climax is the falsetto, and finally the redemption is in the continuing call and answer. Lennon said of this song “It's sort of a history of Rock 'n' Roll. They all said it was about drugs, but it was more about rock 'n roll than drugs. It's sort of a history of rock 'n roll... I don't know why people said it was about the needle in heroin. I've only seen somebody do something with a needle once, and I don't like to see it at all. A gun magazine was sitting around and the cover was the picture of a smoking gun. The title of the article, which I never read, was 'Happiness Is a Warm Gun.' I took it right from there. I took it as the idea of happiness after having shot somebody. Or some animal.”
Helter Skelter by The Beatles was written by Pau McCartney after hearing The Who track, I Can See For Miles. McCartney said “I thought, Right, they've done what they think was the loudest and dirtiest; we'll do what we think. I went into the studio and told the guys, 'Look, I've got this song but Pete said this and I want to do it even dirtier.' It was a great brief for the engineers, for everyone- just as fuzzy and as dirty and as loud and as filthy as you can get it is where I want to go. I was happy to have Pete's quote to get me there.” The first version was a 27 minute jam that was never released. The song is named after a slide at a British amusement park. The first line is a joke about this: When I get to the bottom I go back to the top of the slide, where I stop and I turn and I go for a ride. Learn more about the ride in Song Images. In December 1968, Charles Manson heard this song, as well as others from The White Album, and interpreted them as a warning of an approaching race war. He saw the Beatles as the 4 angels mentioned in the New Testament book of Revelation and believed their songs were telling him and his followers to prepare themselves. Manson referred to this future war as Helter Skelter. The words Healter Skelter (a misspelling of the Beatles song) were also written in blood at the scene of one of the Manson Family murders (The Labianca's). Because of this connection, Los Angeles assistant District Attorney Vincent Bugliosi, who led the prosecution of Manson and the other killers, named his best-selling book about the murders Helter Skelter. Of Manson, John Lennon said “He's balmy, like any other Beatle-kind of fan who reads mysticism into it. We used to have a laugh about this, that or the other, in a light-hearted way, and some intellectual would read us, some symbolic youth generation wants to see something in it. We also took seriously some parts of the role, but I don't know what 'Helter Skelter' has to do with knifing somebody. I've never listened to the words, properly, it was just a noise.”
Help! by The Beatles. The first copies of the single stated that the record was from the Beatles film, Eight Arms to Hold You. John Lennon has described this time of his life as his fat Elvis period. “The lyric is as good now as it was then.” Lennon said years later “It is no different, and it makes me feel secure to know that I was that aware of myself then. It was just me singing 'Help' and I meant it.” There are different lyrics on the album and single versions. The Beatles sped up the tempo to make it more commercial. Lennon intended it as a slow song. In 1985, this became the first Beatles song ever used in a commercial when it was used in an ad for Ford cars. Ford paid $100,000 for it, and the version in the commercial was performed by a sound-alike group. Originally, the album cover showed The Beatles spelling out the word Help using the semaphore system of communicating with flags, which was usually used by ships. The photographer didn't like the pose, so he had them hold the flags in a way that looked good, but didn't spell anything. The Beatles said the film was inspired by the Marx Brothers classic Duck Soup; it was also directly satirical of the James Bond series of films. At the time of the original release of Help! its distributor, United Artists, also held the rights to the Bond series. Director Richard Lester was given a larger budget for this film than he had for A Hard Day's Night, thanks to the commercial success of the latter. Thus, this feature film was in color and was shot on several exotic foreign locations. It was also given a fuller musical score than A Hard Day's Night, provided by a full orchestra, and including pieces of well-known classical music: Wagner's Lohengrin, Act III Overture, Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture, Beethoven's Ninth Symphony (Ode to Joy), and, during the end credits and with their own comic vocal interpretation, Rossini's Barber of Seville overture. The original title for the film — only changed to Help! very near to its release — was Eight Arms To Hold You. Help! was set in London, Salisbury Plain, the Austrian Alps, New Providence Island and Paradise Island in the Bahamas and Twickenham Film Studios, beginning in the Bahamas on February 23 1965. Ringo Starr commented that they were in the Bahamas for the hot weather scenes, and therefore had to wear light clothing even though it was rather cold. Beatles manager Brian Epstein, chose the Bahamas for tax reasons. During the restaurant sequence filmed in early April, George began to discover Indian-style music, which would be a key element in future songs such as "Norwegian Wood". Filming finished on April 14. The Beatles did not particularly enjoy the filming of the movie, nor were they pleased with the end product. John Lennon said they felt like extras in their own movie. "The movie was out of our control. With A Hard Day's Night, we had a lot of input, and it was semi-realistic. But with Help!, Dick Lester didn't tell us what it was all about.” A contributing factor was exhaustion attributable to their busy schedule of writing, recording and touring. Afterward they were hesitant to begin another film project, and indeed Help! was their last full-length scripted theatrical film. Their obligation for a third film to United Artists was met by the 1970 documentary film Let It Be. The 1968 animated film Yellow Submarine did not meet contractual obligations because it did not star the Beatles, and their only live appearance was featured for less than two minutes at the film's conclusion. The Beatles later said the film was shot in a "haze of marijuana". According to Ringo Starr during the Austrian Alps film shooting, he and McCartney ran off over the hill from the "curling" scene set to smoke a joint.
Here, There And Everywhere by The Beatles was written by Paul McCartney while he was lounging at John Lennon's pool. It was at least partly inspired by The Beach Boys' song God Only Knows. McCartney said: It's actually just the introduction that's influenced. John and I used to be interested in what the old fashioned writers used to call the verse, which we nowadays would call the intro - this whole preamble to a song, and I wanted to have one of those on the front of 'Here, There and Everywhere.' John and I were quite into those from the old-fashioned songs that used to have them, and in putting that [sings To lead a better life] on the front of 'Here, There and Everywhere,' we were doing harmonies, and the inspiration for that was the Beach Boys. We had that in our minds during the introduction to 'Here, There and Everywhere.' I don't think anyone, unless I told them, would even notice, but we'd often do that, get something off an artist or artists that you really liked and have them in your mind while you were recording things, to give you the inspiration and give you the direction - nearly always, it ended up sounding more like us than them anyway.” Lennon and McCartney both said that this was one of the most underrated Beatles songs and McCartney said that of all the songs he has written, this is his favorite.
Hey Bulldog by The Beatles was recorded while the group were filming the promotional video for Lady Madonna. They started recording this tune as “Hey Bullfrog” McCartney barked at the end and made Lennon laugh. They kept in the barking and changed the title, even though there is no mention of a bulldog in the verses or chorus. (The original title was You Can Talk To Me.) Hey Bulldog is chanted 4 times before John and Paul's playful banter and then twice during the fade-out. This was the first recording session John brought Yoko to and the last song The Beatles recorded before leaving for a retreat in India to study meditation with the Maharishi.
"Here Comes the Sun" is a song by George Harrison from The Beatles' 1969 album Abbey Road. Harrison said "Here Comes the Sun" was written at the time when Apple was getting like school, where we had to go and be businessmen: 'Sign this' and 'sign that'. Anyway, it seems as if winter in England goes on forever, by the time spring comes you really deserve it. So one day I decided I was going to sag off Apple and I went over to Eric Clapton's house. The relief of not having to go see all those dopey accountants was wonderful, and I walked around the garden with one of Eric's acoustic guitars and wrote "Here Comes the Sun".
Here, there and everywhere is a song written primarily by Paul McCartney who said the song is one of his favorites. Beatles' producer George Martin has also mentioned it as one of his favorite as well. John Lennon reportedly told McCartney it was "The best tune on the album"
"Hey Jude" is a song Paul McCartney wrote to comfort John Lennon's son Julian during his parents' divorce. In 1968, John Lennon and his wife Cynthia Lennon separated due to John's affair with Yoko Ono. Soon afterwards, Paul McCartney drove out to visit Cynthia and Julian, her son with Lennon. "We'd been very good friends for millions of years and I thought it was a bit much for them suddenly to be personae non gratae and out of my life," McCartney said. Cynthia Lennon recalled, "I was truly surprised when, one afternoon, Paul arrived on his own. I was touched by his obvious concern for our welfare.... On the journey down he composed 'Hey Jude' in the car. I will never forget Paul's gesture of care and concern in coming to see us." The song's original title was "Hey Jules", and it was intended to comfort Julian Lennon from the stress of his parents' divorce. McCartney said, "I started with the idea 'Hey Jules', which was Julian, don't make it bad, take a sad song and make it better. Hey, try and deal with this terrible thing. I knew it was not going to be easy for him. I always feel sorry for kids in divorces ... I had the idea [for the song] by the time I got there. I changed it to 'Jude' because I thought that sounded a bit better." Julian Lennon discovered the song had been written for him almost twenty years later. He remembered being closer to McCartney than to his father: "Paul and I used to hang about quite a bit—more than Dad and I did. We had a great friendship going and there seems to be far more pictures of me and Paul playing together at that age than there are pictures of me and my dad." Although McCartney originally wrote the song for Julian Lennon, John Lennon thought it had actually been written for him “But I always heard it as a song to me. If you think about it... Yoko's just come into the picture. He's saying. 'Hey, Jude—Hey, John.' I know I'm sounding like one of those fans who reads things into it, but you can hear it as a song to me ... Subconsciously, he was saying, Go ahead, leave me. On a conscious level, he didn't want me to go ahead.”
Hold Me Tight was composed principally by Paul McCartney in 1961, and was part of the Beatles' stage act until 1963. Both McCartney and Lennon shared their distaste for the song. "I can't remember much about that one.” McCartney said “Certain songs were just 'work' songs you haven't got much memory of them. That's one of them."
I Wanna Be Your Man is a Lennon/McCartney-penned song that was recorded separately by The Beatles and The Rolling Stones. The Rolling Stones' version was released a few weeks earlier. The song was primarily written by Paul McCartney, and finished by Lennon and McCartney in the corner of a room while Mick Jagger and Keith Richards were talking. Released as their second single on 1 November 1963, the Stones' version was an early hit, peaking at #12 on the British chart. Their rendition is a frenetic electric rock/blues song featuring Brian Jones' distinctive slide guitar and Bill Wyman's driving bass playing. It is one of the few Rolling Stones songs featuring backing vocals by Jones. According to various accounts, either the Rolling Stones' manager/producer Andrew Loog Oldham or the Rolling Stones themselves ran into Lennon and McCartney on the street as the two were returning from an awards luncheon. Hearing that the band was in need of material for a single, Lennon and McCartney went to their session at De Lane Lea Studio and finished off the song – whose verse they had already been working on – in the corner of the room while the impressed Rolling Stones watched. John Lennon was dismissive of the song in 1980, saying “It was a throwaway. The only two versions of the song were Ringo and the Rolling Stones. That shows how much importance we put on it: We weren't going to give them anything great, right?”
I Want to Hold Your Hand was the band's first number-one hit on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, starting the British Invasion of the United States music charts. Manager Brian Epstein was getting worried about the Beatles' lack of commercial success in America—their earlier singles had flopped there—and so he encouraged Lennon and McCartney to write a song that would appeal to American listeners. At the time, McCartney was living as a guest of Dr. Richard and Margaret Asher, whose daughter, actress Jane Asher, was McCartney’s steady girlfriend. The house briefly became Lennon and McCartney’s new writing base, taking over from McCartney’s Forthlin Road home in Liverpool. Margaret Asher taught the oboe in a "small, rather stuffy music room" in the basement and it was here that Lennon and McCartney sat at the piano and composed 'I Want to Hold Your Hand'. Lennon said “We wrote a lot of stuff together, one on one, eyeball to eyeball. Like in 'I Want to Hold Your Hand,' I remember when we got the chord that made the song. We were in Jane Asher's house, downstairs in the cellar playing on the piano at the same time. And we had, 'Oh you-u-u/ got that something...' And Paul hits this chord [E minor] and I turn to him and say, 'That's it!' I said, 'Do that again!' In those days, we really used to absolutely write like that—both playing into each other's noses. McCartney added “'Eyeball to eyeball' is a very good description of it. That's exactly how it was. 'I Want to Hold Your Hand' was very co-written. It was our big number one; the one that would eventually break us in America.
I Want to Tell You is a song written by George Harrison and originally released by The Beatles on their 1966 album Revolver The lyrics are, in Harrison's own words, "about the avalanche of thoughts that are so hard to write down or say or transmit."
I Will was written as a love song for McCartney's future wife Linda Eastman, and was one of the songs worked on by The Beatles and their associates while in Rishikesh, India. Although the music came together fairly easily, the words were worked on in India, and remained unfinished even as recording began back in London.
I'll Cry Instead was described by Cynthia Lennon as a cry for help, saying "It reflects the frustration he [John Lennon] felt at that time. He was the idol of millions, but the freedom and fun of the early days had gone." John Lennon later said the line "A chip on my shoulder that's bigger than my feet" was an accurate indication of his feelings at the time. The song is rooted in country & western, a genre that the Beatles, and especially Ringo Starr, enjoyed playing.
I'll Get You was initially titled "Get You in the End". The song's opening line "Imagine I'm in love with you" was innovative, as it drew the listener immediately into the story. McCartney would cite this as an early example of Lewis Carroll influencing their lyrics; a ploy explored again in later compositions such as "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds", "Strawberry Fields Forever" and Lennon's solo "Imagine" McCartney said "I [also] liked that slightly faggy way we sang: 'Oh yeah, oh yeah' which was very distinctive, very Beatley. Lennon said: "Ever heard anyone from Liverpool singing 'yes'? It’s yeah!".
I Feel Fine was a number one hot for the Beatles in 1964. The first note was the first time feedback was used on a record. It was created when Paul McCartney pushed his bass up against an amplifier. John Lennon wrote the majority of the song and later admitted that he had borrowed most it from Blues musician Bobby Parker’s song 'Watch Your Step'. As the Beatles song closes there is a very faint sound of barking dogs. Turned out it was Paul McCartney fooling around.
I Saw Her Standing There was a Lennon and McCartney collaboration based on McCartney's initial idea. Originally titled "Seventeen", the song was apparently conceived by McCartney while driving home from a Beatles' concert in Southport, Lancashire and later completed at his home with Lennon. McCartney later described in Beat Instrumental how he went about the song's composition: "Here’s one example of a bit I pinched from someone: I used the bass riff from 'Talkin’ About You' by Chuck Berry in 'I Saw Her Standing There'. I played exactly the same notes as he did and it fitted our number perfectly. Even now, when I tell people, I find few of them believe me; therefore, I maintain that a bass riff hasn’t got to be original". The lyrics were written on a Liverpool Institute exercise book. Remember, a book by McCartney's brother Mike McCartney, includes a photograph of Lennon and McCartney writing the song while strumming guitars and reading the exercise book. It was typical of how Lennon and McCartney would work in partnership, as McCartney later commented: "I had 'She was just seventeen,' and then 'Beauty queen'. When I showed it to John, he screamed with laughter, and said 'You're joking about that line, aren't you?' It was one of the first times he ever went 'What? Must change that...'"
It's Only Love by the Beatles was released 1965 and was said to be one of John Lennon’s least favorite songs because it lacked polish and style. It's the most embarrassing song I ever wrote. Said John Everything rhymed. Disgusting lyrics. Even then I was so ashamed of the lyrics, I could hardly sing them. That was one song I really wished I'd never written. The original title was That's a Nice Cap.
It Won't Be Long" was primarily a John Lennon composition, with Paul McCartney assisting with the lyrics and arrangement. John Lennon said "It was only after a critic for the London Times said we put 'Aeolian cadences' in 'It Won't Be Long' that the middle classes started listening to us. ... To this day, I have no idea what "Aeolian cadences" are. They sound like exotic birds. “
I'm Looking Through You" is a Lennon/McCartney song, written mainly by Paul McCartney that first appeared on The Beatles' 1965 album Rubber Soul. It was written about Jane Asher, McCartney's girlfriend for five years, "You don't look different, but you have changed," the lyrics declare, reflecting his dissatisfaction with their relationship.
"I'm Down" is a song by the Beatles was recorded "I'm Down" on June 14 1965 in the same session as "Yesterday" and "I've Just Seen a Face". During the session, particularly between takes one and two, McCartney can be heard repeating the phrase "Plastic soul, man, plastic soul". He later revealed that the phrase, which the Beatles later adapted for the title of their album Rubber Soul, was used by black musicians to describe Mick Jagger.
"I Am the Walrus" from 1967. John Lennon claimed he wrote the first two lines on separate acid trips “The first line” he said “was written on one acid trip one weekend. The second line was written on the next acid trip the next weekend, and it was filled in after I met Yoko... I'd seen Allen Ginsberg and some other people who liked Dylan and Jesus going on about Hare Krishna. It was Ginsburg; in particular, I was referring to. The words "Element'ry penguin" meant that it's naïve to just go around chanting Hare Krishna or putting all your faith in one idol. In those days I was writing obscurely, a la Dylan. t never dawned on me that Lewis Carroll was commenting on the capitalist system. I never went into that bit about what he really meant, like people are doing with the Beatles' work. Later, I went back and looked at it and realized that the walrus was the bad guy in the story and the carpenter was the good guy. I thought, Oh, shit, I picked the wrong guy. I should have said, 'I am the carpenter.' But that wouldn't have been the same, would it? [Sings, laughing] 'I am the carpenter....'" The rest by combining three songs he had been working on into one. The first was a song based on a line that came from hearing a police siren at his home ("Mis-ter cit-y police-man") The second was a short rhyme about Lennon sitting in his garden, and the third a song about sitting on a corn flake. Unable to finish the ideas as three different songs, he combined them into one. When he learned that a teacher at his old primary school was having his students analyze Beatles' lyrics, he added a verse of nonsense words from an English school child’s poem
"Yellow matter custard, green slop pie,
All mixed together with a dead dog's eye,
Slap it on a butty, ten foot thick,
Then wash it all down with a cup of cold sick".
Lennon remarked "Let the fuckers work that one out."
Lennon borrowed a couple of words, added the three unfinished ideas and the result was "I Am the Walrus". The walrus is a reference to the walrus in Lewis Carroll's "The Walrus and the Carpenter" from the book Through the Looking-Glass. (He learned later that the walrus was a villain in the poem.) The song's opening line, "I am he as you are he as you are me and we are all together" is based on the song "Marching To Pretoria," which contains the lyric, "I'm with you and you're with me and we are all together." Eric Burdon, lead singer of The Animals, is claimed by some to be the 'Eggman'. Burdon was known as 'Eggs' to his friends, the nickname originating from his fondness for breaking eggs over naked women's bodies. Burdon's biography mentions such an affair taking place in the presence of John Lennon, who shouted "Go on, go get it, Eggman”
I'll follow the Sun: Paul McCartney wrote this before he joined The Beatles. The group held off releasing it because at the time, ballads did not fit their hard-rocking image. Oddly enough the song that follows this on Beatles For Sale is "Mr. Moonlight," creating a sun/moon contrast. In 2008, a reel-to-reel tape containing outtakes of this song where Lennon and McCartney's attempts to finish recording cause them to break into laughter was auctioned off in England for about $23,000 in early August 2008.
I'm Happy Just to Dance with You was written specifically for George Harrison to sing at a time when he lacked the confidence to compose his own material. Years later, McCartney described it as a "formula song", and Lennon said, "I would never have sung it myself."
I'm looking through You was written about Jane Asher, McCartney's girlfriend for five years, "You don't look different, but you have changed," the lyrics declare, reflecting his dissatisfaction with their relationship.
I'm a Loser is one of the first Beatles' compositions that "goes beyond young love" including "the hypocrisy of keeping up a happy face when your world's falling down". Paul McCartney said “Looking back on it I think songs like 'I'm a Loser' and 'Nowhere Man' were John's cries for help. We used to listen to quite a lot of country and western songs and they are all about sadness and 'I lost my truck' so it was quite acceptable to sing 'I'm a loser' ... It's only later you think, God! I think it was brave of John.” Lennon said the song was "me in my Dylan period" and added, "Part of me suspects I'm a loser and part of me thinks I'm God Almighty. [Laughs.]" On the original pressings of Beatles for Sale, the title was misprinted as "I'm a Loseer".
I'm Only Sleeping began in EMI Studios on April 27 1966 with eleven takes of the rhythm track. Five further takes of the song were recorded but none were used. Take 11 was chosen as the master and two days later Lennon added his lead vocals. The first draft of Lennon's lyrics for the song written on the back of a letter from 1966, suggests that he was writing about the joys of staying in bed rather than any drug euphoria sometimes read into the lyrics. While not on tour, due to his lack of routine, Lennon would often spend his time sleeping, reading, writing or watching television, often under the influence of drugs, and would often have to be woken by McCartney for songwriting sessions. Maureen Cleave, a friend of Lennon's, wrote, "He can sleep almost indefinitely, is probably the laziest person in England. 'Physically lazy,' he said. 'I don't mind writing or reading or watching or speaking, but sex is the only physical thing I can be bothered with any more.'"
I'm So Tired Lennon wrote this at a Transcendental Meditation camp when he could not sleep. The Beatles had gone on a retreat to study with the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi in Rishikesh, India. After three weeks of constant meditation and lectures, Lennon missed his soon-to-be wife, Yoko Ono, and was plagued by insomnia that inspired the song. Lennon later said of it: "One of my favorite tracks. I just like the sound of it, and I sing it well".
I've got a Feeling was Paul McCartney's song for his girlfriend Linda Eastman, whom he soon married, telling her that she was the girl he had always been looking for. Lennon's song, which was merged with this song, was a litany where every line started with the word "everybody". While McCartney's song was very optimistic, Lennon had actually had a hard year—he had divorced his wife, Cynthia Powell, his girlfriend Yoko Ono had a miscarriage, he was arrested for drug possession, and he had grown deeply unhappy in the Beatles. In the film Let It Be, Lennon claims jokingly he wrote "Everybody Had a Hard Year" the night before.
I've Just Seen a Face was the Beatles stab at writing country music.
In My Life John Lennon said that the song's origins can be found when English journalist Kenneth Allsop made a remark that Lennon should write songs about his childhood. Afterwards, Lennon wrote a song in the form of a long poem reminiscing on his childhood years. The original version of the lyrics was based on a bus route he used to take in Liverpool, naming various sites seen along the way, including Penny Lane and Strawberry Field. However, Lennon found it to be "ridiculous", calling it "the most boring sort of 'What I Did on My Holidays Bus Trip' song"; he reworked the words, replacing the specific memories with a generalized meditation on his past. "Very few lines" of the original version remained in the finished song. According to Lennon's friend and biographer Peter Shotton, the lines "Some [friends] are dead and some are living/In my life I've loved them all" referred to Stuart Sutcliffe (who died in 1962) and to Shotton.
It's Only Love was composed with the working title "That's A Nice Hat". Lennon had the original idea for the song, and completed it with McCartney at his home in Weybridge. Lennon said "I always thought it was a lousy song. The lyrics were abysmal. I always hated that song."
Julia was the only time that John Lennon played and sang unaccompanied on a Beatle track. "Julia" was written for John's mother, Julia Lennon (1914–1958), who was killed by drunk off-duty cop in a hot and run when John was 17 years old. It was also written for his future wife Yoko Ono, whose first name, which literally means "child of the sea" in Japanese, is echoed in lyrics such as "Ocean child, calls me." In an interview in 1971 John Lennon said, "I wrote 'God Save Us' with Yoko, and 'Do the Oz', and there's one track on the album that she wrote. She had written other things, even 'Julia' back in the Beatles days." indicating that she may have contributed some lines to it when John returned from India.
"Lady Madonna" was primarily written by Paul McCartney and recorded on 3 and 6 of February 1968 before the Beatles left for India. The piano playing on this song was inspired by 1950s rock/blues pianist, Fats Domino. McCartney recalled.
Let It Be Paul McCartney said he had the idea of "Let It Be" after a dream he had about his mother during the tense period surrounding the sessions for The Beatles (the "White Album"). McCartney explained that his mother—who died of cancer when he was fourteen—was the inspiration for the "Mother Mary" lyric. He later said, "It was great to visit with her again. I felt very blessed to have that dream. So that got me writing 'Let It Be'." He also said in a later interview about the dream that his mother had told him, "It will be all right, just let it be."
The Long and Winding Road. While the released version of this song was very successful, the post-production modifications to the song by producer Phil Spector angered McCartney to the point that when he made his case in court for breaking up The Beatles as a legal entity, McCartney cited the treatment of "The Long and Winding Road" as one of six reasons for doing so. McCartney originally wrote the song at his farm in Scotland, and was inspired by the growing tension among the Beatles. McCartney said later: “I just sat down at my piano in Scotland, started playing and came up with that song, imagining it was going to be done by someone like Ray Charles. "I have always found inspiration in the calm beauty of Scotland and again it proved the place where I found inspiration." The "long and winding road" of the song was claimed to have been inspired by the B842, a thirty-one mile winding road in Scotland, running along the east coast of Kintyre into Campbeltown, and part of the eighty-two mile drive from Lochgilphead. McCartney described the lyric more obliquely “It's rather a sad song. I like writing sad songs, it's a good bag to get into because you can actually acknowledge some deeper feelings of your own and put them in it. It's a good vehicle, it saves having to go to a psychiatrist.”
Love Me Do was principally written by Paul McCartney in 1958–1959 while playing truant from school aged 16. John Lennon wrote the middle eight. It was recorded by the Beatles on three different occasions with three different drummers. The Beatles first recorded it on 6 June 1962 with Pete Best on drums, as part of their audition at EMI Studios at 3 Abbey Road, London. By 4 September, Best had been replaced with Ringo Starr (producer George Martin did not approve of Best's drumming; the decision to fire Best was not his however), and on that day the Beatles with Starr recorded a version again at EMI Studios. One week later, on 11 September, the Beatles returned to the same studio and they made a recording of "Love Me Do" with session drummer Andy White on drums, as Martin was unhappy with Starr's performance on 4 September and he was relegated to playing tambourine. As the tambourine was not included on the 4 September recording, this is the easiest way to distinguish between the Starr and White recordings.
Of Lovely Rita by The Beatles Paul McCartney said “I was bopping about on the piano in Liverpool when someone told me that in America, they call parking-meter women meter maids. I thought that was great, and it got to 'Rita Meter Maid' and then Lovely Rita Meter Maid' and I was thinking vaguely that it should be a hate song: 'You took my car away and I'm so blue today' and you wouldn't be liking her; but then I thought it would be better to love her and if she was very freaky too, like a military man, with a bag on her shoulder. A foot stomper, but nice. The song was imagining if somebody was there taking down my number and I suddenly fell for her, and the kind of person I'd be, to fall for a meter maid, would be a shy office clerk and I'd say, 'May I inquire discreetly when you are free to take some tea with me.' Tea, not pot. It's like saying 'Come and cut the grass' and then realizing that could be pot, or the old teapot could be something about pot. But I don't mind pot and I leave the words in. They're not consciously introduced just to say pot and be clever. “ McCartney and Beatles producer George Martin both played pianos. Martin played the honky-tonk style in the middle and combs and paper were used to create odd background noises. McCartney's vocal was sped-up a bit - one of the many studio tricks employed on the Sgt. Pepper album. Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys told Q magazine that this is his favorite Paul McCartney song. He recalled: I had a sneak preview of Sgt. Pepper when Paul came to visit me in 1967 and Lovely Rita made me laugh my head off. I love the way it comes floating in. The bass line is great and the lyrics are kind of funny too.
Love Me Do by The Beatles was written by Paul McCartney wrote this about his girlfriend at the time, Iris Caldwell. This was the Beatles first single. However when the song was released in England, it was not a big hit. The Beatles' manager, Brian Epstein, was so confident in the group that he gave the single a big marketing push by buying a bunch of copies of it (some say 10,000) for his record store, which helped get it on the charts and ensured more exposure for the band. The Beatles were very close to releasing another song as their first single. At their September 4 recording session, George Martin decided their first single should be a song called How Do You Do It?, which was written by someone else. The Beatles were not pleased and did some lackluster takes of the song before they were allowed to record Love Me Do. Eventually, Martin changed his mind and went with Love Me Do. How Do You Do It? became a hit for Gerry and the Pacemakers in 1964. Before they recorded this, Lennon always sang the lead vocal, but when his harmonica part was added, McCartney had to sing it because Lennon's mouth was full of harmonica. Paul claims that you can hear the fear in his voice at the audition. John stole the harmonica used in this song in a music shop in Arnhem, a Dutch town near to the German border, while the Beatles were on their way to Hamburg. This was recorded in mono on 1-track tape. No stereo version exists. When John's Aunt Mimi heard this song, she said to him “Well, if you think you're going to make a fortune with that, you've got another thing coming” Author Bob Spitz wrote that Brian Epstein tried to help make Love Me Do a hit in England by buying 10,000 copies of the single for his Liverpool record store.
"Little Child" was written by John Lennon and Paul McCartney for Ringo Starr, but Starr was instead given "I Wanna Be Your Man" as his album song. Paul McCartney described "Little Child" as being a "work song” or an "album filler" and said that he took he line "I'm so sad and lonely" from the song "Whistle My Love" by British balladeer and actor Elton Hayes.
Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds Lennon's inspiration for the song came when his son, Julian, showed him a nursery school drawing he called "Lucy - in the sky with diamonds", depicting his classmate, Lucy O'Donnell. Julian said, "I don't know why I called it that or why it stood out from all my other drawings, but I obviously had an affection for Lucy at that age. I used to show dad everything I'd built or painted at school, and this one sparked off the idea..." Lucy Vodden née O'Donnell, in a BBC radio interview in 2007, said, "I remember Julian and I both doing pictures on a double-sided easel, throwing paint at each other, much to the horror of the classroom attendant... Julian had painted a picture and on that particular day his father turned up with the chauffeur to pick him up from school." Vodden died of the immune system disease lupus in 2009. Lennon was surprised at the idea that the song title was a hidden reference to LSD. “It was purely unconscious that it came out to be LSD. Until someone pointed it out, I never even thought of it. I mean, who would ever bother to look at initials of a title? It's not an acid song. The imagery was Alice in the boat.”
Martha My Dear was inspired by McCartney's Old English Sheepdog, also named Martha. McCartney has said that the song itself is probably about his longtime love interest Jane Asher. Asher broke off their engagement in mid-1968. McCartney chides her with the lyrics in the song "...when you find yourself in the thick of it, help yourself to a bit of what is all around you..." Asher inspired many of McCartney's songs, including "Here, There and everywhere", "For No One" and "We Can Work It Out". (A later "Martha" lyric explains, "You have always been my inspiration..." McCartney has also said, cryptically, that the song is about his "muse"—the voice in his head that tells him what words and music to write.)
Maxwell's Silver Hammer" is a song by The Beatles of which Paul McCartney said "Maxwell's Silver Hammer" is my analogy for when something goes wrong out of the blue, as it so often does, as I was beginning to find out at that time in my life. I wanted something symbolic of that, so to me it was some fictitious character called Maxwell with a silver hammer. I don't know why it was silver, it just sounded better than Maxwell's hammer. It was needed for scanning. We still use that expression now when something unexpected happens. In the past I may have written tongue-in-cheek, like 'Maxwell's Silver Hammer', and dealt with matters of fate in a kind of comical, parody manner. It just so happens in this batch of songs I would look at these subjects and thought it was good for writing. If it's good enough to take to your psychiatrist, it's good enough to make a song of." The name "Maxwell Edison" comes from combining the name of two scientists, Thomas Edison and James Clerk Maxwell. The length of time it took to record the song created tension between The Beatles. Paul McCartney commented: "The only arguments were about things like me spending three days on Maxwell's Silver Hammer. I remember George saying, 'You've taken three days, it's only a song.' - 'Yeah, but I want to get it right. I've got some thoughts on this one.' It was early-days Moog work and it did take a bit of time".
Mean Mr. Mustard" was written by John Lennon in India; Lennon said that it was inspired by a newspaper story about a miser who concealed his cash wherever he could in order to prevent people from forcing him to spend it. On reflection, he did not think highly of the composition, describing it in Anthology as "a bit of crap I wrote in India."
Michelle was a tune that I'd written in Chet Atkins' finger-picking style.” Paul McCartney said “There is a song he did called 'Trambone' with a repetitive top line, and he played a bass line whilst playing a melody. This was an innovation for us; even though classical guitarists had played it, no rock'n'roll guitarists had played it. The first person we knew to use finger-picking style was Chet Atkins. .. I never learned it. But based on Atkins' "Trambone", I wanted to write something with a melody and a bass line in it, so I did. I just had it as an instrumental in C.” The words and style of "Michelle" has its origins in the popularity of French Left Bank culture during McCartney's Liverpool days. McCartney had gone to a party of art students where a student with a goatee and a striped T-shirt was singing a French song. He soon wrote a farcical imitation to entertain his friends that involved French-sounding groaning instead of real words. The song remained a party piece until 1965, when John Lennon suggested he rework it into a proper song for inclusion on Rubber Soul. “we'd tag along to these parties, and it was at the time of people like Juliette Greco, the French bohemian thing... So I used to pretend to be French, and I had this song that turned out later to be 'Michelle'. It was just an instrumental, but years later John said: 'You remember that thing you wrote about the French?' I said: 'Yeah.' He said: 'That wasn't a bad song, that. You should do that, y'know.'” McCartney decided to remain with the French feel of his song and asked Jan Vaughan, a French teacher and the wife of his old friend Ivan Vaughan, to come up with a French name and a phrase that rhymed with it. "It was because I'd always thought that the song sounded French that I stuck with it. I can't speak French properly so that's why I needed help in sorting out the actual words", McCartney said. Vaughan came up with "Michelle, ma belle", and a few days later McCartney asked for a translation of "these are words that go together well" — sont des mots qui vont très bien ensemble. When McCartney played the song for Lennon, Lennon suggested the "I love you" bridge. Lennon was inspired by a song he heard the previous evening, Nina Simone's recording of "I Put a Spell on You", which used the same phrase but with the emphasis on the last word, "I love you".
Mother Nature's Son is a Lennon/McCartney song, written by Paul McCartney and released by The Beatles on The Beatles (The White Album). It was inspired by a lecture given by the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi while The Beatles were in India. The same lecture inspired Lennon's unreleased song "Child of Nature," the tune of which he later re-used for "Jealous Guy." The song was later covered by Harry Nilsson.
"Norwegian Wood by The Beatles that first appeared on the 1965 album Rubber Soul. It is the first example of a rock band actually playing the sitar in one of their songs; it was played by George Harrison. Harrison said “During the filming of Help! there were some Indian musicians in a restaurant scene and I kind of messed around with a sitar then. But during that year, towards the end of the year anyway, I kept hearing the name of Ravi Shankar. So I went out and bought a record and that was it. It felt very familiar to me to listen to that music. It was around that time I bought a sitar. I just bought a cheap sitar in a shop called India Craft, in London. It was lying around. I hadn't really figured out what to do with it. When we were working on Norwegian Wood it just needed something, and it was quite spontaneous, from what I remember. I just picked up my sitar, found the notes and just played it. We miked it up and put it on and it just seemed to hit the spot.” McCartney said the final line of the song indicates that the singer burned the home of the girl “Peter Asher [brother of McCartney's then-girlfriend Jane Asher] had his room done out in wood, a lot of people were decorating their places in wood. Norwegian wood. It was pine, really, cheap pine. But it's not as good a title, "Cheap Pine", baby. So it was a little parody really on those kind of girls who when you'd go to their flat there would be a lot of Norwegian wood. It was completely imaginary from my point of view but in John's it was based on an affair he had. This wasn't the decor of someone's house, we made that up. So she makes him sleep in the bath and then finally in the last verse I had this idea to set the Norwegian wood on fire as revenge, so we did it very tongue in cheek. She led him on, and then said, "You'd better sleep in the bath." In our world the guy had to have some sort of revenge ... so it meant I burned the fucking place down ....”
This exchange took place in a press conference in Los Angeles on 24 August 1966:
Reporter: I'd like to direct this question to Lennon and McCartney. In a recent article, Time magazine put down pop music. And they referred to "Day Tripper" as being about a prostitute...
Paul: Oh yeah.
Reporter: ...and "Norwegian Wood" as being about a lesbian.
Paul: Oh yeah.
Reporter: I just wanted to know what your intent was when you wrote it, and what your feeling is about the Time magazine criticism of the music that is being written today.
Paul: We were just trying to write songs about prostitutes and lesbians, that's all.
The song was apparently inspired by Lennon's extramarital flings. Ironically, he wrote it while he was on a holiday with his wife, Cynthia, at St. Moritz in the Swiss Alps. They were joined by The Beatles' producer George Martin, who had injured himself early in the holiday, and his wife. Martin recalled:
It was during this time that John was writing songs for Rubber Soul, and one of the songs he composed in the hotel bedroom, while we were all gathered around, nursing my broken foot, was a little ditty he would play to me on his acoustic guitar. The song was "Norwegian Wood".
Martin referred to the words as "a very bitter little story".
Lennon said of the song: "I was trying to write about an affair, so it was very gobbledegooky. I was trying to write about an affair without letting my wife know I was having one. I was sort of writing from my experiences ... girls' flats, things like that."
Nowhere Man" by The Beatles. John Lennon claimed that he wrote the song about himself. He wrote it after racking his brain in desperation for five hours, trying to come up with another song for Rubber Soul. Lennon told Playboy: "I'd spent five hours that morning trying to write a song that was meaningful and good, and I finally gave up and lay down. Then 'Nowhere Man' came, words and music, the whole damn thing as I lay down". McCartney said of the song: "That was John after a night out, with dawn coming up. I think at that point, he was a bit...wondering where he was going and to be truthful so was I. I was starting to worry about him".
Octopus's Garden George Harrison said "'Octopus's Garden' is Ringo's song. It's only the second song Ringo has ever written, mind you, and it's lovely." He added that the song gets very deep into your consciousness "because it's so peaceful. I suppose Ringo is writing cosmic songs these days without even realizing it." The idea for the song came about when Starr was on a boat belonging to comedian Peter Sellers in Sardinia in 1968. He ordered fish and chips for lunch, but instead of fish he got squid. It was the first time he'd eaten squid, and he said, "It was OK. A bit rubbery. Tasted like chicken." Then the boat's captain told Ringo Starr about how octopuses travel along the sea bed picking up stones and shiny objects with which to build gardens. Harrison added the sound of bubbles being blown into a glass of milk using a straw
Oh! Darling by The Beatles composed by Paul McCartney "When we were recording 'Oh! Darling' I came into the studios early every day for a week to sing it by myself because at first my voice was too clear. I wanted it to sound as though I'd been performing it on stage all week." He would only try the song once each day; if it was not right he would wait until the next day, in order to make sure he got every precious first take right. He once lamented that "five years ago I could have done this in one take".
Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da is a song cred to Lennon/McCartney, but primarily written by Paul McCartney and released by The Beatles in 1968. During May 1968, The Beatles gathered at George Harrison's Esher home, in Surrey, to record demos for their upcoming project. "Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da" was one of the twenty-seven demos recorded there. According to studio engineer Geoff Emerick, John Lennon openly hated the song, calling it "Paul's granny shit". Lennon left the studio during a recording of the song (after several days and literally dozens of takes of the song, trying different tempos and styles), then returned while under the influence of marijuana, went immediately to the piano and played the opening chords much louder and faster than before. He claimed that was how the song should be played, and that is the version they ended up using. When singing the vocals for the song, specifically the last verse of the song when sung the second time, McCartney made a slip and said "Desmond stays at home and does his pretty face", rather than Molly, and had Molly letting "the children lend a hand". Reportedly, this mistake was kept in because the other Beatles liked it. George Harrison and Lennon yell "arm" and "leg" during a break in the song; between the lines "...Desmond lets the children lend a hand" and "Molly stays at home..."
Piggies written by George Harrison as social commentary on class and corporate greed. Harrison's mother provided the line "What they need's a damn good whacking," and Lennon contributed with the line "clutching forks and knives to eat their bacon." It is the only Beatles song to include a curse word in its lyrics. Though Harrison intended the song as social commentary, it was often misinterpreted as an anti-police anthem due to the fact that the term "pig" was a common slang term for policeman at the time in some circles. During the murders of Sharon Tate, Leno and Rosemary LaBianca, Gary Hinman and others by the Manson Family, the words 'political piggy', 'pig' and 'death to pigs' were written with the victims' blood on the walls. In the case of the LaBianca murders, knives and forks were actually inserted into the victims in reference to the lyric "Clutching forks and knives to eat their bacon"
Penny Lane was released in February 1967 as one side of a double A-sided single, along with "Strawberry Fields Forever". The song's title is derived from the name of a street in the band's hometown, Liverpool. Penny Lane is named after James Penny, an 18th century slave trader. McCartney and Lennon grew up in the area and they would meet at Penny Lane junction in the Mossley Hill area to catch a bus into the city. The street is an important landmark, sought out by most Beatles fans touring Liverpool. In the past, street signs saying "Penny Lane" were constant targets of tourist theft and had to be continually replaced. Eventually, city officials gave up and simply began painting the street name on the sides of buildings. This practice was stopped in 2007 and more theft-resistant "Penny Lane" street signs have since been installed though some are still stolen. In August 1987, the piccolo trumpet played on "Penny Lane" and two other Beatles tracks ("All You Need Is Love" and "Magical Mystery Tour") was sold in an auction at Sotheby's for $10,846. The 'shelter in the middle of the roundabout' in the song refers to the old bus shelter, later developed into a cafe/restaurant with a Beatles theme, but now derelict and abandoned, despite its popularity as a tourist attraction. This is also Penny Lane Bus Terminus and is officially on Smithdown Place. The lyrics "Four of fish and finger pies" are British slang. "A four of fish" refers to fourpennyworth of fish and chips, while "finger pie" is sexual slang of the time.
Please Please Me by the Beatles was a 1963 release that hit number 3 on the US charts. The Beatles first recorded Please Please Me on September 11, 1962 but Capitol Records rejected the song but a tiny Chicago-based label named Vee Jay label and released the song. Beatles producer George said “The songs the Beatles first gave me were crap. This was 1962 and they played a dreadful version of 'Please Please Me' as a Roy Orbison-style ballad. “I listened to it and I said: 'Do you know that's too bloody boring for words? It's a dirge. At twice the speed it might sound reasonable.' They took me at my word. I was joking and they came back and played it to me sped up and put a harmonica on it, and it became their first big hit. I signed them because they made me feel good to be with them, and if they could convey that on a stage then everyone in the audience would feel good, too. So I took 'Love Me Do' and added some harmonica, but it wasn't financially rewarding even though Brian Epstein bought about 2,000 copies. Then we worked for ages on their new version of 'Please Please Me', and I said: 'Gentlemen, you're going to have your first number one'. The song was said to be about an argument between Lennon and his wife about oral sex. The Beatles denied it but Lennon said of the song: I was always intrigued by the double use of the word 'please'. The group's name was misspelled Beattles on the record label on the first American release.
P.S. I Love You was written in 1961, while Paul McCartney was in Hamburg, this song is sometimes considered to be a dedication to his then-girlfriend Dot Rhone. However, McCartney denies this; he described "P.S. I Love You" as “a theme song based on a letter... It was pretty much mine. I don't think John had much of a hand in it. There are certain themes that are easier than others to hang a song on, and a letter is one of them... It's not based in reality, nor did I write it to my girlfriend from Hamburg, which some people think.” John Lennon recalled “That's Paul's song. He was trying to write a "Soldier Boy" like The Shirelles. He wrote that in Germany, or when we were going to and from Hamburg. I might have contributed something. I can't remember anything in particular. It was mainly his song.” ("Soldier Boy" was a US #1 single for the Shirelles in 1962.)
Rain explores the themes of reality and illusion, has the useless honor of being the first song to use a tape played backwards, which created the strange audio effect. John Lennon discovered the technique when he put the tape for Tomorrow Never Knows on the wrong way.
He was stoned at the time, and producer George Martin had to convince him that using a backward recording for the entire song was a bad idea. The inspiration for Rain, according to Neil Aspinal, The Beatles' roadie, came from the band's arrival in Melbourne, Australia, marked by rain and poor weather. Lennon said, "I've never seen rain as hard as that, except in Tahiti", and later explained that "Rain" was "about people moaning about the weather all the time".
Revolution by the Beatles from 1968 was written by Lennon while in India with the other Beatles at a transcendental meditation camp with The Maharishi. Lennon told Rolling Stone: I had been thinking about it up in the hills in India. I still had this 'God will save us' feeling about it, that it's going to be all right (even now I'm saying 'Hold on, John, it's going to be all right,' otherwise, I won't hold on) but that's why I did it, I wanted to talk, I wanted to say my piece about revolution. I wanted to tell you, or whoever listens, to communicate, to say 'What do you say? This is what I say.' Paul McCartney didn't like it. Nicky Hopkins played the piano and John Lennon wanted his vocals to have an unusual sound, so he recorded most of them lying on his back in the studio and the famous scream at the beginning is a double-tracked recording of Lennon.
"Revolution 9" was created primarily by John Lennon with assistance from George Harrison and Yoko Ono. Lennon said he was trying to paint a picture of a revolution using sound. The composition was influenced by the avant-garde style of Yoko Ono as well as the musique concrète works of composers such as Edgard Varese and Karlheinz Stockhausen. The loop of "number nine" featured in the recording fueled rumors about Paul McCartney's death after it was reported that it sounded like "turn me on, dead man" when played backwards.
Rocky Raccoon by the Beatles came out in 1968 on the White Album. McCartney got the idea for this when he was playing guitar with John Lennon and Donovan Leitch at the Maharishi's camp in India to study transcendental meditation. That’s Beatles producer George Martin playing the piano in an old-west saloon style. The main character was originally called Rocky Sassoon but McCartney changed it to Raccoon, as he thought the name was “more cowboy.”
Run for Your Life: The song lyrics threatening tone towards the singer's unnamed girlfriend ("little girl"), that pronounce "I'd rather see you dead, little girl, than to be with another man" is a line that Lennon took from the Elvis Presley song "Baby, Let's Play House". Lennon designated this song his "least favorite Beatles song" and later said it was the song he most regretted writing. He also stated that this song was one of George Harrison's favorite songs on Rubber Soul at that time despite Lennon's dislike of it.
Sexy Sadie was written by John Lennon in India who originally wanted to title the song "Maharishi", but changed the title to "Sexy Sadie" at George Harrison's request. Lennon was disillusioned after Maharishi Mahesh Yogi had allegedly made a sexual advance at one of the female members attending the course the Maharishi was teaching at his ashram. Harrison, Paul McCartney, and Cynthia Lennon later said that they thought the story, which had come from hanger -on Alexis Mardas, had been fabricated. After returning from India, Lennon scratched the lyrics into a piece of wood, with the original title "Maharishi". The wood ended up in the possession of Maureen Starkey and was ultimately sold to a Beatles' collector. Lennon said "That was inspired by Maharishi. I wrote it when we had our bags packed and were leaving. It was the last piece I wrote before I left India. I just called him, 'Sexy Sadie,' instead of (sings) 'Maharishi what have you done, you made a fool...' I was just using the situation to write a song, rather calculatingly but also to express what I felt. I was leaving the Maharishi with a bad taste. You know, it seems that my partings are always not as nice as I'd like them to be." In a 1969 interview, Lennon stated one of his favorite songs was "I've Been Good to You" by Smokey Robinson & The Miracles. The song begins with the line “Look what you've done / You made a fool out of someone, compared to Sexy Sadie's What have you done? / You made a fool of everyone.” Cult leader Charles Manson took the title of this song as a reference to Manson Family member Susan Atkins, who was nicknamed Sadie Mae Glutz, prior to the release of the White Album.
She Came in Through the Bathroom Window g was inspired by Apple scruffs (dedicated fans who hung around outside the Abbey Road studio, Apple, and the homes of The Beatles), who broke into McCartney's St. John's Wood home. Jessica Samuels, one of the group recalled "We were bored, he was out and so we decided to pay him a visit. We found a ladder in his garden and stuck it up at the bathroom window which he'd left slightly open. I was the one who climbed up and got in." She then opened the front door to let the others in, and they stole a number of photographs. Another Apple scruff, Margo Bird, remembers being good friends with McCartney - she would often take his dog for walks - and later got a job at Apple Corps. She says that she was asked to retrieve a certain photograph, which she did.
Of She's Leaving Home Paul McCartney said “John and I wrote 'She's Leaving Home' together. It was my inspiration. We'd seen a story in the newspaper about a young girl who'd left home and not been found, there were a lot of those at the time, and that was enough to give us a story line. So I started to get the lyrics: she slips out and leaves a note and then the parents wake up ... It was rather poignant. I like it as a song, and when I showed it to John, he added the long sustained notes, and one of the nice things about the structure of the song is that it stays on those chords endlessly. Before that period in our song-writing we would have changed chords but it stays on the C chord. It really holds you. It's a really nice little trick and I think it worked very well. While I was showing that to John, he was doing the Greek chorus, the parents' view: 'We gave her most of our lives, we gave her everything money could buy.' I think that may have been in the runaway story, it might have been a quote from the parents. Then there's the famous little line about a man from the motor trade; people have since said that was Terry Doran, who was a friend who worked in a car showroom, but it was just fiction, like the sea captain in "Yellow Submarine", they weren't real people.” The newspaper story McCartney mentioned was from the front page of the Daily Mirror, about a girl named Melanie Coe. Although McCartney made up most of the content, Coe, who was 17 at the time claims that he got most of it right. Her parents wondered why she had left... "She has everything here." In real life, Melanie did not "meet a man from the motor trade", but instead a croupier, and left in the afternoon while her parents were at work. She was found ten days later because she had let slip where her boyfriend worked. Coincidentally, Coe had met McCartney three years earlier when she was a contestant and prize winner on the English TV show Ready Steady Go!
Something During the 1968 recording sessions for The Beatles (also referred to as the White Album), Harrison began working on a song that eventually became known as "Something". The song's first lyrics were adapted from the title of an unrelated song by fellow Apple artist James Taylor called "Something in the Way She Moves" and used as filler while the melody was being developed. The song's second line, "Attracts me like no other lover," was the last to be written; during early recording sessions for "Something", Harrison alternated between two placeholder lyrics: "Attracts me like a cauliflower" and "Attracts me like a pomegranate." Harrison later said that "I had a break while Paul was doing some overdubbing so I went into an empty studio and began to write. That's really all there is to it, except the middle took some time to sort out. It didn't go on the White Album because we'd already finished all the tracks." A demo recording of the song by Harrison from this period appears on the Beatles Anthology 3 collection, released in 1996. Many believe that Harrison's inspiration for "Something" was his wife at the time, Pattie Boyd. Boyd also claimed that inspiration in her 2007 autobiography, Wonderful Tonight, where she wrote: "He told me, in a matter-of-fact way, that he had written it for me." However, Harrison has cited other sources of inspiration to the contrary. He responded to the question of whether the song was about Pattie: "Well no, I didn't [write it about her]. I just wrote it, and then somebody put together a video. And what they did was they went out and got some footage of me and Pattie, Paul and Linda, Ringo and Maureen, it was at that time, and John and Yoko and they just made up a little video to go with it. So then, everybody presumed I wrote it about Pattie, but actually, when I wrote it, I was thinking of Ray Charles." The original intention had been for Harrison to offer the song to Jackie Lomax, or Joe Cocker.
Strawberry Field was the name of a Salvation Army Children's Home just around the corner from Lennon's childhood home in Woolton, a suburb of Liverpool. Lennon and his childhood friends Pete Shotton, Nigel Whalley, and Ivan Vaughan used to play in the wooded garden behind the home. One of Lennon's childhood treats was the garden party held each summer in Calderstones Park near the Salvation Army Home every year, where a Salvation Army band played. Lennon's aunt Mimi Smith recalled: "As soon as we could hear the Salvation Army band starting, John would jump up and down shouting, 'Mimi, come on. We're going to be late.'" Lennon's "Strawberry Fields Forever" and McCartney's "Penny Lane" shared the theme of nostalgia for their early years in Liverpool. Although both referred to actual locations, the two songs also had strong surrealistic and psychedelic overtones. Producer George Martin said that when he first heard "Strawberry Fields Forever" he thought it conjured up a "hazy, impressionistic dream world". The period of the song's writing was one of change and dislocation for Lennon. The Beatles had just retired from touring after one of the most difficult periods of their career, including the "more popular than Jesus" controversy and the band's unintentional snubbing of Philippines First Lady Imelda Marcos. Lennon's marriage with Cynthia Powell was failing, and he was using increasing quantities of drugs, especially the powerful psychedelic LSD, as well as cannabis, which he had smoked during his time in Spain. Lennon talked about the song in 1980: "I was different all my life. The second verse goes, 'No one I think is in my tree.' Well, I was too shy and self-doubting. Nobody seems to be as hip as me is what I was saying. Therefore, I must be crazy or a genius—'I mean it must be high or low'", and explaining that the song was "psycho-analysis set to music". Lennon began writing the song in Almería, Spain, during the filming of Richard Lester's How I Won the War in September–October 1966 The earliest demo of the song, recorded in Almería, had no refrain and only one verse: "There's no one on my wavelength / I mean, it's either too high or too low / That is you can't you know tune in but it's all right / I mean it's not too bad". He revised the words to this verse to make them more obscure, then wrote the melody and part of the lyrics to the refrain (which then functioned as a bridge and did not yet include a reference to Strawberry Fields). He then added another verse and the mention of Strawberry Fields. The first verse on the released version was the last to be written, close to the time of the song's recording. For the refrain, Lennon was again inspired by his childhood memories: the words "nothing to get hung about" were inspired by Aunt Mimi's strict order not to play in the grounds of Strawberry Field, to which Lennon replied, "They can't hang you for it." The first verse Lennon wrote became the second in the released version, and the second verse Lennon wrote became the last in the release. Recording the song began on November 24 1966, in Abbey Road's Studio. It took 45 hours to record, spread over five weeks. Some vocalizing by Lennon is faintly audible at the end of the song, picked up as leakage onto one of the drum microphones (close listening shows Lennon making other comments to Ringo). In the "Paul is Dead" hoax these were taken to be Lennon saying "I buried Paul." In 1974, McCartney said, "That wasn't 'I buried Paul' at all—that was John saying 'cranberry sauce'. It was the end of Strawberry Fields. That's John's humor. John would say something totally out of sync, like cranberry sauce. If you don't realize that John's apt to say cranberry sauce when he feels like it, then you start to hear a funny little word there, and you think, 'Aha!'". Shortly before his murder in 1980, Lennon expressed dissatisfaction with the final version of the song, saying it was "badly recorded" and going so far as to accuse McCartney of subconsciously sabotaging the recording.
"Taxman" was a song written by George Harrison and released as the opening track on The Beatles' 1966 album Revolver. Harrison said, "'Taxman' was when I first realised that even though we had started earning money, we were actually giving most of it away in taxes. It was and still is typical." The Beatles' large earnings placed them in the top tax bracket in the United Kingdom, liable to a 95% super tax introduced by Harold Wilson's Labor government. In a 1984 interview with Playboy magazine, Paul McCartney agreed: "George wrote that and I played guitar on it. He wrote it in anger at finding out what the taxman did. He had never known before then what he'll do with your money." John Lennon recalled "I remember the day he [Harrison] called to ask for help on 'Taxman', one of his first songs. I threw in a few one-liners to help the song along, because that's what he asked for. He came to me because he couldn't go to Paul, because Paul wouldn't have helped him at that period. I didn't want to do it... I just sort of bit my tongue and said OK. It had been John and Paul for so long he'd been left out because he hadn't been a songwriter up until then."
Thank You Girl" by The Beatles and released as the B-side of "From Me to You". Both songs were recorded on March 5, 1963. Originally titled "Thank You, Little Girl", John Lennon and Paul McCartney wrote the song as a tribute to the band's many female fans. McCartney said, "We knew that if we wrote a song called, 'Thank You Girl', that a lot of the girls who wrote us fan letters would take it as a genuine 'thank you'. So a lot of our songs were directly addressed to the fans." The song was recorded in thirteen takes, the same number of takes needed to perfect "From Me to You".
"The Ballad of John and Yoko" was released by The Beatles as a single in May 1969. The song, chronicling the events surrounding Lennon’s marriage to Yoko Ono, was the Beatles’ 17th and final number one single in England. Lennon brought the song to McCartney’s home on April 14 1969, and recorded it that evening. The song was recorded without George Harrison (who was on vacation) and Ringo Starr (who was filming The Magic Christian). In his biography, McCartney recalls that Lennon had had a sudden inspiration for the song and had suggested that the two of them should record it immediately, without waiting for the other Beatles to return.
The End" by the Beatles was composed by Paul McCartney who said, "I wanted [the medley] to end with a little meaningful couplet, so I followed the Bard and wrote a couplet." All four Beatles have a solo in "The End", including a Ringo Starr drum solo.
The Fool on the Hill" was written and sung by Paul McCartney in 1967.” 'Fool on the Hill' was mine” he said “and I think I was writing about someone like Maharishi. His detractors called him a fool. Because of his giggle he wasn't taken too seriously ... I was sitting at the piano at my father's house in Liverpool hitting a D 6th chord, and I made up 'Fool on the Hill.'” Another version comes from Alistair Taylor, in the book Yesterday, who wrote that a mysterious incident involving a man who inexplicably appeared near him and McCartney during a walk on Primrose Hill and then disappeared again, soon after McCartney and Taylor had conversed about the existence of God; this allegedly prompted the writing of the song.
There's a Place. The title was inspired by Leonard Bernstein and Stephen Sondheim's "Somewhere" from West Side Story, which contained the line: "somewhere there's a place for us". McCartney owned the album of the soundtrack at the time of writing. The Continuing Story of Bungalow Bill opens with a flamenco guitar solo that was taken from a seldom-heard Mellotron bank of Spanish guitar runs followed by the chorus, sung by all four Beatles, Ringo's then-wife Maureen, and Yoko Ono. The song was recorded at Abbey Road on October 8 1968 and was completed, including all overdubs in this one session. The Beatles also started and completed the Lennon-composed "I'm So Tired" during the same recording session. The song mocks a young American named Richard A. Cooke III, known as Rik who was visiting his mother, Nancy Cooke de Herrera, at the ashram of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi in Rishikesh at the same time that The Beatles were staying there. According to Nancy Cooke de Herrera, both she and her son maintained friendly relations with all of The Beatles except for Lennon, who by Cooke de Herrera's account was "a genius" but distant and contemptuous of her because of her inherited wealth and her clean-cut, college-attending son. According to Nancy's life account, Beyond Gurus, the genesis of the song occurred when she, Rik, and several others, including native guides, set out upon elephants to hunt for a tiger. The pack of elephants was attacked by a tiger, which was shot by Rik Cooke who was initially proud of his quick reaction and posed for a photograph with his prize. His mother claimed that all present recognized the necessity of her son’s action but that John Lennon's reaction was sarcastic, asking Cooke "But wouldn't you call that slightly life-destructive?" Lennon later said “Bungalow Bill’ was written about a guy in Maharishi's meditation camp who took a short break to go shoot a few poor tigers, and then came back to commune with God. There used to be a character called Jungle Jim, and I combined him with Buffalo Bill. It's sort of a teenage social-comment song and a bit of a joke."
Ticket to Ride by the Beatles is from their 1965 album, Help! Paul McCartney said the song was a British Railways ticket to the town of Ryde on the Isle of Wight, and Lennon said it described cards indicating a clean bill of health carried by Hamburg prostitutes in the 1960s. The Beatles played in Hamburg early in their musical career, and ride/riding was slang for having sex.
Tomorrow Never Knows was written primarily by John Lennon in January of 1966, with lyrics adapted from the book The Psychedelic Experience: A Manual Based on the Tibetan Book of the Dead by Timothy Leary although the lines "When in doubt, relax, turn off your mind, float downstream" comes from the book The Portable Nietzsche. The title (The piece was originally titled "Mark I".) never appears in the song's lyrics. It came from one of Ringo Starr's malapropisms. When The Beatles returned to London after their first visit to America in early 1964 they were interviewed by BBC Television. The interview included the following:
Interviewer: "Now, Ringo, I hear you were manhandled at the Embassy Ball. Is this right?"
Ringo: "Not really. Someone just cut a bit of my hair, you see."
Interviewer: "Let's have a look. You seem to have got plenty left."
Ringo: (turns head) "Can you see the difference? It's longer, this side."
Interviewer: "What happened exactly?"
Ringo: "I don't know. I was just talking, having an interview (exaggerated voice). Just like I am NOW!"
(John and Paul begin lifting locks of his hair, pretending to cut it)
Ringo: "I was talking away and I looked 'round, and there was about 400 people just smiling. So, you know — what can you say?"
John: "What can you say?"
Ringo: "Tomorrow never knows."
We can work it out was another Paul McCartney song about his girlfriend, actress named Jane Asher. The two split for good in 1968. John Lennon sang the "life is very short" part, which he also wrote, McCartney sang the rest.
With a Little Help from My Friends. Was written specifically as Ringo’s track for an album. It was briefly called Bad Finger Boogie, supposedly because Lennon composed the melody on a piano using his middle finger after having hurt his forefinger. It was written deliberately with a limited range - except for the last note, which McCartney worked closely with Ringo to achieve. Ringo insisted on changing the first line which originally was "What would you do if I sang out of tune? Would you stand up and throw tomatoes at me?" He changed the lyric so that fans would not throw tomatoes at him should he perform it live because in the early days, after George Harrison made a passing comment that he liked jelly babies, the group was showered with them at all of their live performances.
Why Don't We Do it in the Road? was written and sung by Paul McCartney who wrote the song after seeing two monkeys copulating in the street while on retreat in Rishikesh, India, with the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. He marveled in the simplicity of this natural scenario when compared to the emotional turmoil of human relationships. “A male [monkey] just hopped on the back of this female” he recalled “and gave her one, as they say in the vernacular. Within two or three seconds he hopped off again and looked around as if to say, ‘It wasn't me,’ and she looked around as if there'd been some mild disturbance ... And I thought ... that's how simple the act of procreation is ... We have horrendous problems with it, and yet animals don't.”
Yesterday was recorded by The Beatles for their 1965 album Help! And according to Guinness World Records, "Yesterday" has the most cover versions of any song ever written. (More than 1,600 recorded cover versions) It was the first recording by The Beatles that relied upon a performance by a single member of the band, Paul McCartney, accompanied by a string quartet. Although credited to the "Lennon/McCartney" team, the song was written solely by McCartney. (In 2002 McCartney asked Yoko Ono if she would allow reversing the credit on the song to read "McCartney/Lennon". Ono refused.) McCartney was said to have composed the entire melody in a dream one night in his room at the Wimpole Street home of his then girlfriend Jane Asher and her family. Upon waking, he hurried to a piano and played the tune to avoid forgetting it. His initial concern was that he had subconsciously plagiarized someone else's work "For about a month” he said “I went round to people in the music business and asked them whether they had ever heard it before. Eventually it became like handing something in to the police. I thought if no-one claimed it after a few weeks then I could have it." There is a slight resemblance between the lyric and rhyming schemes of "Yesterday" and Nat King Cole's "Answer Me, My Love" "Yesterday" begins with the lines: "Yesterday, all my troubles seemed so far away. Now it looks as though they're here to stay." In its second stanza, "Answer Me, My Love" has the lines: "You were mine yesterday. I believed that love was here to stay. Won't you tell me where I've gone astray". Convinced that he had not borrowed the song, McCartney began writing lyrics to suit it with a substitute working titled "Scrambled Eggs" (the working opening verse was "Scrambled Eggs/Oh, my baby how I love your legs").He worked on it constantly. During the shooting of Help! a piano was placed on one of the stages where filming was being conducted and McCartney would take advantage of this opportunity to tinker with the song. Richard Lester, the director, became annoyed and told McCartney to finish writing the song or he would have the piano removed. The patience of the other Beatles was also tested by McCartney's work in progress, George Harrison summing this up when he said: "Blimey, he's always talking about that song. You'd think he was Beethoven or somebody" "I remember” McCartney said “mulling over the tune 'Yesterday', and suddenly getting these little one-word openings to the verse. I started to develop the idea ... da-da da, yes-ter-day, sud-den-ly, fun-il-ly, mer-il-ly and Yes-ter-day, that's good. All my troubles seemed so far away. It's easy to rhyme those a's: say, nay, today, away, play, stay, there's a lot of rhymes and those fall in quite easily, so I gradually pieced it together from that journey. Sud-den-ly, and 'b' again, another easy rhyme: e, me, tree, flea, we, and I had the basis of it. "He completed the song on May 27, 1965, when he and Jane Asher flew to Lisbon for a holiday in Albufeira, Algarve. The song was offered as a demo to singer Chris Farlowe prior to The Beatles recording it, but he turned it down. The track was recorded by the Beatles at Abbey Road Studios on June 14, 1965, immediately following the taping of "I'm Down". The song spent a remarkable total of 11 weeks in the charts, selling a million copies within five weeks and was the most-played song on American radio for eight consecutive years.
You Can't Do That is one of Lennon's semi-autobiographical songs. With filming due to begin on A Hard Day's Night director Dick Lester needed the Beatles to provide him with original material ahead of production and "You Can't Do That" was selected as part of the Scala Theatre "live performance" scene in the film, but was dropped for the final cut along with I'll Cry Instead. The recording took nine takes to complete, and was considered for the A-side of their next single until McCartney wrote Can't Buy Me Love.
You Know My Name (Look up the Number) Lennon came up with the lyric/title after seeing a phone book. He said “That was a piece of unfinished music that I turned into a comedy record with Paul. I was waiting for him in his house, and I saw the phone book was on the piano with 'You know the name, look up the number.' That was like a logo, and I just changed it.” Paul McCartney added later “People] are only just discovering things like 'You Know My Name (Look Up the Number)'—probably my favorite Beatles' track. It's so insane. All the memories ... I mean, what you would do if a guy like John Lennon turned up at the studio and said, 'I've got a new song'. I said, 'What's the words?' and he replied 'You know my name look up the number'. I asked, 'What's the rest of it?' 'No, no other words, those are the words. And I want to do it like a mantra ”
You won’t see me is McCartney crisis – relationship song about his then-girlfriend Jane Asher. She was rejecting him by not returning phone calls and ignoring him —he was in a vulnerable position. The more biting tone of the song marks a change away from his earlier, happier love songs
Your Mother Should Know Paul McCartney wrote this at his home on Cavendish Avenue in London on the harmonium in the dining room. His Aunt Jin, Uncle Harry, and other relatives were there, and he just sat and wrote it for a few hours with the door opened so they could all listen from another room. Paul said, "I was basically trying to say your mother might know more than you think she does. Give her credit." He also said that the family atmosphere and his Aunty Jin being there influenced it and its music-hall idea.
You’ve got to hide Hid your Love Away, When Lennon made a mistake during the recording, singing "two foot small" instead of "two foot tall", he is reported to have said: "Let's leave that in, actually. All those pseuds will really love it."
In their own words
“I realize, looking back, how advanced it was. It was a precursor to the Batman "Pow! Wow!" on TV--that kind of stuff. But [film Director Lester] never explained it to us. Partly, maybe, because we hadn't spent a lot of time together between A Hard Day's Night and Help!, and partly because we were smoking marijuana for breakfast during that period. Nobody could communicate with us. It was all glazed eyes and giggling all the time. In our own world. It's like doing nothing most of the time, but still having to rise at 7 am, so we became bored.” John Lennon on filming Help!
"A hell of a lot of pot was being smoked while we were making the film.(Help) It was great. That helped make it a lot of fun...In one of the scenes, Victor Spinetti and Roy Kinnear are playing curling: sliding along those big stones. One of the stones has a bomb in it and we find out that it's going to blow up, and have to run away. Well, Paul and I ran about seven miles, we ran and ran, just so we could stop and have a joint before we came back. We could have run all the way to Switzerland. If you look at pictures of us you can see a lot of red-eyed shots; they were red from the dope we were smoking. And these were those clean-cut boys! Dick Lester knew that very little would get done after lunch. In the afternoon we very seldom got past the first line of the script. We had such hysterics that no one could do anything. Dick Lester would say, 'No, boys, could we do it again?' It was just that we had a lot of fun — a lot of fun in those days." Ringo Starr on the film Help!
"We showed up a bit stoned, smiled a lot and hoped we'd get through it. We giggled a lot. I remember one time at Cliveden (Lord Astor's place, where the Christine Keeler/Profumo scandal went on); we were filming the Buckingham Palace scene where we were all supposed to have our hands up. It was after lunch, which was fatal because someone might have brought out a glass of wine as well. We were all a bit merry and all had our backs to the camera and the giggles set in. All we had to do was turn around and look amazed, or something. But every time we'd turn round to the camera there were tears streaming down our faces. It's OK to get the giggles anywhere else but in films, because the technicians get pissed off with you. They think, 'They're not very professional.' Then you start thinking, 'This isn't very professional — but we're having a great laugh.'" Paul McCartney
“I was sitting at the piano when I thought of it. The first few bars just came to me, and I got this name in my head... 'Daisy Hawkins picks up the rice in the church'. I don't know why. I couldn't think of much more so I put it away for a day. Then the name Father McCartney came to me, and all the lonely people. But I thought that people would think it was supposed to be about my Dad sitting knitting his socks. Dad's a happy lad. So I went through the telephone book and I got the name McKenzie.” Paul McCartney on writing Eleanor Rigby
"We don't say it was a good film. It was our first attempt. If we goofed, then we goofed. It was a challenge and it didn't come off. We'll know better next time I mean, you couldn’t call the Queen’s speech a gas, either, could you?” Paul McCartney on the TV production Magical Mystery Tour
“Paul wrote the main structure of this when he was sixteen, or even earlier. I think I had something to do with the middle.” John Lennon on Love me Do
“In Hamburg we clicked... At the Cavern (Club) we clicked... but if you want to know when we knew we'd arrived, it was getting in the charts with 'Love Me Do'. That was the one. It gave us somewhere to go.” Paul McCartney on Lennon
“The first record, 'Love Me Do', for me that was more important than anything else. That first piece of plastic. You can't believe how great that was. It was so wonderful. We were on a record!” Ringo Starr
"So first of all I checked this melody out, and people said to me, 'No, it's lovely, and I'm sure it's all yours.' It took me a little while to allow myself to claim it, but then like a prospector I finally staked my claim; stuck a little sign on it and said, 'Okay, it's mine!' It had no words. I used to call it 'Scrambled Eggs'." Paul McCartney on writing Yesterday
"The song was around for months and months before we finally completed it. Every time we got together to write songs for a recording session, this one would come up. We almost had it finished. Paul wrote nearly all of it, but we just couldn't find the right title. We called it 'Scrambled Eggs' and it became a joke between us. We made up our minds that only a one-word title would suit, we just couldn't find the right one. Then one morning Paul woke up and the song and the title were both there, completed. I was sorry in a way; we'd had so many laughs about it." John Lennon on the song Yesterday.
“...They [then] became the longest running saga since World War Two - except that with the Beatles, nobody died.” Derek Taylor
That guitar is okay but you'll never make a living with it" John's Aunt Mimi
"What does it mean when a person is such a pacifist that they get shot? I can never understand that." John Lennon
"We thought that if we lasted for two to three years that would be fantastic." Ringo Starr
"When you're drowning, you don't say 'I would be incredibly pleased if someone would have the foresight to notice me drowning and come and help me,' you just scream." John Lennon, on the song Help!
"I am alive and well and unconcerned about the rumors of my death. But if I were dead, I would be the last to know." Paul McCartney, 1969
"I'm a tidy sort of bloke. I don't like chaos. I kept records in the record rack, tea in the tea caddy, and pot in the pot box." George Harrison
"We all have Hitler in us, but we also have love and peace. So why not give peace a chance for once?" John Lennon
"I think people who truly can live a life in music are telling the world, 'You can have my love, you can have my smiles. Forget the bad parts, you don't need them. Just take the music, the goodness, because it's the very best, and it's the part I give most willingly'" George Harrison
"I am not the Beatles. I'm me. Paul isn't the Beatles...The Beatles are the Beatles. Separately, they are separate." John Lennon
"The things is, we're all really the same person. We're just four parts of the one." Paul McCartney
"John had his thing, and Paul had his, and together there were two different things all together. But they fit." Billy Preston
"When I was about twelve, I used to think I must be a genius, but nobody's noticed. If there is such a thing as a genius...I am one, and if there isn't, I don't care." John Lennon
"As far as I'm concerned, there won't be a Beatles reunion as long as John Lennon remains dead." George Harrison
"Christianity will go. It will vanish and shrink. I needn't argue with that; I'm right and will be proved right. We're more popular than Jesus now; I don't know which will go first - rock and roll or Christianity." One of the most controversial statements Lennon ever made, this was published in England's Evening Standard newspaper ( March 4 1966) as part of an interview with writer Maureen Cleave. This single quote (taken out of context — Lennon was often misquoted as stating the Beatles were "bigger than Jesus") was to spark protests across the Bible Belt in America. Beatles records were burned en masse, and the Ku Klux Klan burned a Beatles effigy and nailed Beatles albums to a burning cross. The band members were dismissive of this, as they pointed out that first the people had to buy the albums in order to burn them.
“I suppose if I had said television was more popular than Jesus, I would have gotten away with it. I'm sorry I opened my mouth. I'm not anti-God, anti-Christ, or anti-religion. I wasn't knocking it or putting it down. I was just saying it as a fact and it's true more for England than here. I'm not saying that we're better or greater, or comparing us with Jesus Christ as a person or God as a thing or whatever it is. I just said what I said and it was wrong. Or it was taken wrong. And now it's all this.” News conference in Chicago, where John Lennon apologized for the above statement, which was accepted by the Vatican. (11 August 1966)
"I'm not saying we're better or greater, or comparing us with Jesus Christ as a person, or God as a thing, or whatever it is. I just said what I said, and it was wrong, or it was taken wrong. And now it's all this." -John Lennon
"There's a lot of random in our songs...writing, thinking, letting others think of bits-then bam, you've the jigsaw puzzle." Paul McCartney
"Reality leaves a lot to the imagination." John Lennon
"If everyone demanded peace instead of another television set, then there'd be peace." -John Lennon
"Possession isn't nine-tenths of the law its nine-tenths of the problem. -John Lennon
"We've got this gift of love, but love is like a precious plant. You can't just accept it and leave it in the cupboard or just think it's going to get on by itself. You've got to keep on watering it. You've got to really look after it and nurture it." -John Lennon
"As usual, there is a great woman behind every idiot." -John Lennon
"Nobody controls me. I'm uncontrollable. The only one who can control me is me, and that's just barely possible." -John Lennon
"At the beginning I was annoyed with [John], jealous because of Yoko, and afraid about the breakup of a great musical partnership. It took me a year to realize they were in love." -Paul McCartney
"It doesn't matter how long my hair is or what color my skin is or whether I'm a woman or a man." John Lennon
"If being an egomaniac means I believe in what I do and in my art or my music, then in that respect you can call me that...I believe in what I do, and I'll say it." John Lennon
"I am going into an unknown future, but I'm still all here, and still while there's life, there's hope." John Lennon (December 1980)
"I'm really glad that most of our songs were about love, peace and understanding." -Paul McCartney
"You don't need anybody to tell you who you are or what you are. You are what you are!" -John Lennon
"I don't believe in killing whatever the reason!" -John Lennon
"I can't tell you how much it hurts to lose him. His death is a bitter cruel blow. I really loved the guy." -Paul McCartney on John Lennon.
"I consider that my work won't be finished until I'm dead and buried, and I hope that's a long long time." -John Lennon, Dec. 1980
"I hope the fans will take up meditation instead of drugs." Ringo Starr, 1967
"There's a woman in the United States who predicted the plane we were traveling on would crash. Now, a lot of people would like to think we were scared into saying a prayer. What we did actually--we drank." - Ringo Starr, 1966
"There is one thing I used to regret and feel guilty about. When Ringo joined us I used to act all big time with him because I'd been in the business a bit longer and felt superior. I was a know-all. I'd been in the sixth form and thought I'd read a bit, you know. I began putting him off me, and me off me." -Paul McCartney
"Lots of people who complained about us receiving the MBE received theirs for heroism in the war-for killing people. We received ours for entertaining other people. I'd say we deserve ours more."-John Lennon
"John was in constant need of proof of love and security and he was constantly testing people for that proof." -Cynthia Lennon
"It's hard to follow my own act. But the only answer to that would be to give up after the Beatles. I only had two alternatives. Give up or carry on." -Paul McCartney
"I've never really done anything to create what has happened. It creates itself. I'm here because it happened. But I didn't do anything to make it happen apart from saying 'Yes'" Ringo Starr
"The nicest thing is to open the newspapers and not to find yourself in them." -George Harrison
"One of my great memories of John is from when we were having some argument. I was disagreeing and we were calling each other names. We let it settle for a second and then he lowered his glasses and he said: "It's only me." And then he put his glasses back on again. To me, that was John. Those were the moments when I actually saw him without the facade, the armor, which I loved as well, like anyone else. It was a beautiful suit of armor. But it was wonderful when he let the visor down and you'd just see the John Lennon that he was frightened to reveal to the world." -Paul McCartney
"I didn't leave the Beatles. The Beatles have left the Beatles--but no one wants to be the one to say the party's over." John Lennon
"I'd like to end up sort of...unforgettable." -Ringo
"Those of you in the cheaper seats, clap your hands. And the rest of you just rattle your jewelry." - Royal Variety Performance in London (4 November 1963) attended by Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother, and Princess Margaret. Of this incident Mark Hertsgaard reports in A Day in the Life : The Music and Artistry of the Beatles (1995): "The remark provoked warm laughter and applause, and was greeted with profound relief by Beatles manager Brian Epstein, who had feared Lennon would make good on his pre-performance threat to tell them to "rattle their fuckin' jewelry."
"I now realize that taking drugs was like taking an aspirin without having a headache." - Paul McCartney
"Explaining the motives behind the breakup of the Beatles: "Personal differences, musical differences, business differences, but most of all because i have a better time with my family." - Paul McCartney
"We never write anything with themes. We just write the same rubbish all the time." John Lennon
"I think the French girls are fabulous." - Paul McCartney
"Us, communists? Why, we can't be communists. We're the world's number one capitalists. Imagine us communists!"- Paul McCartney
"You're all geniuses, and you're all beautiful. You don't need anyone to tell you who you are. You are what you are. Get out there and get peace, think peace, and live peace and breathe peace, and you'll get it as soon as you like." -John Lennon
"There are two basic motivating forces: fear and love. When we are afraid, we pull back from life. When we are in love, we open to all that life has to offer with passion, excitement, and acceptance. We need to learn to love ourselves first, in all our glory and our imperfections. If we cannot love ourselves, we cannot fully open to our ability to love others or our potential to create. Evolution and all hopes for a better world rest in the fearlessness and open-hearted vision of people who embrace life." John Lennon
"I believe in everything until it's disproved. So I believe in fairies, the myths, dragons. It all exists, even if it's in your mind. Who's to say that dreams and nightmares aren't as real as the here and now?" John Lennon
"The more I see, the less I know for sure." John Lennon
"I'm not going to change the way I look or the way I feel to conform to anything. I've always been a freak. So I've been a freak all my life and I have to live with that, you know. I'm one of those people." John Lennon
"When I was 5 years old, my mother always told me that happiness was the key to life. When I went to school, they asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wrote down ‘happy’. They told me I didn’t understand the assignment, and I told them they didn’t understand life." John Lennon
“That's the Beatles' story, isn't it? That's Yoko's story, that's what I'm saying now. Produce your own dream. If you want to save Peru, go save Peru. It's quite possible to do anything, but not to put it on the leaders and the parking meters. Don't expect Jimmy Carter or Ronald Reagan or John Lennon or Yoko Ono or Bob Dylan or Jesus Christ to come and do it for you. You have to do it yourself.” — John Lennon
"The thing the sixties did was to show us the possibilities and the responsibility that we all had. It wasn't the answer. It just gave us a glimpse of the possibility." — John Lennon
"My role in society, or any artist's or poet's role, is to try and express what we all feel. Not to tell people how to feel. Not as a preacher, not as a leader, but as a reflection of us all." — John Lennon
“No — we need money first. “George Harrison, when asked if they wouldn't sing because they couldn't, in a press conference at John F. Kennedy Airport (7 February 1964)
“There's only one person in the United States we ever wanted to meet ... not that he wanted us. And we met him last night. We can't tell you how we felt. We just idolized him so much. ... You can't imagine what a thrill that was last night. Nothing really affected me until I heard Elvis. If there hadn't been an Elvis, there wouldn't have been the Beatles. “George Harrison
“It was a load of rubbish. It was like meeting Engelbert Humperdinck.” John Lennon after meeting Elvis Presley.
“We thought being offered the M.B.E. [Member of the Order of the British Empire] was as funny as everybody else thought it was. Why? What for? We didn't believe it. It was a part we didn't want. We all met and agreed it was daft.” John Lennon
“It was just a gradual development over the years. Last year was "All You Need Is Love." This year it's "Give Peace a Chance." Remember love. The only hope for any of us is peace. Violence begets violence. If you want to get peace, you can get it as soon as you like if we all pull together. You're all geniuses and you're all beautiful. You don't need anybody to tell you who you are or what you are. You are what you are. Get out there and get peace. Think peace, live peace, and breathe peace and you'll get it as soon as you like. Okay?” John Lennon to the press on July 1969 after the release of the Plastic Ono Band's single "Give Peace a Chance”
“That's part of our policy, is not to be taken seriously, because I think our opposition, whoever they may be, in all their manifest forms, don't know how to handle humor. You know, and we are humorous, we are, what are they, Laurel and Hardy. That's John and Yoko, and we stand a better chance under that guise, because all the serious people, like Martin Luther King, and Kennedy, and Gandhi, got shot.” John Lennon, 1969
What's Bagism? It's like... a tag for what we all do, we're all in a bag ya know, and we realised that we came from two bags, I was in this pop bag going round and round in my little clique, and she was in her little avant-garde clique going round and round, and you're in your little tele clique and they're in their...ya know? and we all sort of come out and look at each other every now and then, but we don't communicate. And we all intellectualize about how there is no barrier between art, music, poetry... but we're still all "I'm a rock and roller, he's a poet" ... so we just came up with the word so you would ask us what bagism is, and we'd say "WE'RE ALL IN A BAG BABY!" John Lennon 1969
“When we first started, they basically went John and Paul's way because they were the writers and they would say, "This is the song," and I would play as creatively as I could. Sometimes I would have three people telling me how to do it. They were saying play it this like on that track. I'm saying, "For Christ's sake, there are two drummers there." They could never hear that, you know. You'd have to have four arms to do half the stuff they wanted me to do.” Ringo
“First and foremost I am a drummer. After that, I'm other things.... But I didn't play drums to make money. I played drums because I loved them.... My soul is that of a drummer.... It came to where I had to make a decision — I was going to be a drummer. Everything else goes now. I play drums. It was a conscious moment in my life when I said the rest of things were getting in the way. I didn't do it to become rich and famous, I did it because it was the love of my life.” Ringo
“I used to wish that I could write songs, like the others—and I've tried, but I just can't. I can get the words all right, but whenever I think of a tune the others always say it sounds like such-a-thing, and when they point it out, I see what they mean.” Ringo
“I am a big Beatles fan. And, you know, unbeknownst to anyone, I used to be one. But I have no problems of putting titles and lines from other songs in my songs, because they're great lines and great titles. And some of them I even thought of. You know, I think this is the third time I've used "It Don't Come Easy." I used that on "Time Takes Time," I think, as well. So it's just a great line that, you know, expresses so much. So I just put it in again.” Ringo 2000
“I don't collect any memorabilia. I wish I'd have kept everything I had. But who knew you had to keep it. Just gave it away. And we lost so much and we didn't look after a lot of it. I believe Paul's got everything he ever had, but I lost a lot of mine.” Ringo 2003
“While the others had got married and moved out to suburbia, I had stayed in London and got into the arts scene through friends like Robert Fraser and Barry Miles and papers like The International Times. We opened the Indica gallery with John Dunbar, Peter Asher and people like that. I heard about people like John Cage, and that he’d just performed a piece of music called 4’33” (which is completely silent) during which if someone in the audience coughed he would say, ‘See?’ Or someone would boo and he’d say, ‘See? It’s not silence—it’s music.’ I was intrigued by all of that. So these things started to be part of my life. I was listening to Stockhausen; one piece was all little plink-plonks and interesting ideas. Perhaps our audience wouldn’t mind a bit of change, we thought, and anyway, tough if they do! We only ever followed our own noses—most of the time, anyway. ‘Tomorrow Never Knows’ was one example of developing an idea.” George Harrison
“My idea in "My Sweet Lord," because it sounded like a "pop song," was to sneak up on them a bit. The point was to have the people not offended by "Hallelujah," and by the time it gets to "Hare Krishna," they're already hooked, and their foot's tapping, and they're already singing along "Hallelujah," to kind of lull them into a sense of false security. And then suddenly it turns into "Hare Krishna," and they will all be singing that before they know what's happened, and they will think, "Hey, I thought I wasn't supposed to like Hare Krishna!" George Harrison
“It just annoyed me that people got so into the Beatles. "Beatles, Beatles, Beatles." It's not that I don't like talking about them. I've never stopped talking about them. It's "Beatles this, Beatles that, Beatles, Beatles, Beatles, Beatles." Then in the end, it's like "Oh, sod off with the Beatles," you know?” George Harrison
“I had no ambition when I was a kid other than to play guitar and get in a rock 'n' roll band. I don't really like to be the guy in the white suit at the front. Like in the Beatles, I was the one who kept quiet at the back and let the other egos be at the front.” George Harrison
“He was annoyed 'cause I didn't say that he'd written one line of this song "Taxman." But I also didn't say how I wrote two lines of "Come Together" or three lines of "Eleanor Rigby," you know? I wasn't getting into any of that. I think, in the balance, I would have had more things to be niggled with him about than he would have had with me!” George Harrison, when asked about John Lennon's feelings towards his autobiography.
“When I was about twelve, I used to think I must be a genius, but nobody's noticed. Either I'm a genius or I'm mad, which is it? "No," I said, "I can't be mad because nobody's put me away; therefore I'm a genius." Genius is a form of madness and we're all that way. But I used to be coy about it, like me guitar playing. But if there's such a thing as genius — I am one. And if there isn't, I don't care.” John December 1970
“All that business was awful, it was a fuckin' humiliation. One has to completely humiliate oneself to be what the Beatles were, and that's what I resent. I didn't know, I didn't foresee. It happened bit by bit, gradually, until this complete craziness is surrounding you, and you're doing exactly what you don't want to do with people you can't stand — the people you hated when you were ten.” John Lennon
“It can never be again! Everyone always talks about a good thing coming to an end, as if life was over. But I'll be 40 when this interview comes out. Paul is 38. Elton John, Bob Dylan — we're all relatively young people. The game isn't over yet. Everyone talks in terms of the last record or the last Beatle concert — but, God willing, there are another 40 years of productivity to go. I'm not judging whether "I Am The Walrus" is better or worse than "Imagine." It is for others to judge. I am doing it. I do. I don't stand back and judge — I do.” John Lennon on talk of a Beatles reunion
Walter Ulbricht, father of the socialist German Democratic Republic, referenced the song in a famous speech about copying culture from the western world using the term "monotony of the yeah yeah yeah and whatever it is called".
British Prime Minister Alec Douglas-Home made a gaffe in February 1964: his speechwriters, trying to make him appear in-touch with popular culture, wrote him the line, "I'm too modest to claim the country loves us, but you know that can't be bad." However, he appeared not to understand the reference, and actually said, "but you know, err, that can't be too bad."
In 1996, Ringo Starr appeared in a Japanese advertisement for apple sauce, which coincidentally is what "Ringo" means in Japanese.
Paul McCartney's younger brother, Michael, formed a group of his own known as "The Scaffold" and goes by the name "Mike McGear". He is mentioned in the lyric of "Let 'Em In" as "Brother Michael"
The Beatles played the Las Vegas Convention Center in 1964. Some 8,500 fans paid just $4 each for tickets.
William Kite (Above) was a 19th century circus performer, best known as being the "Mr. Kite" from the Beatles song "Being for the Benefit of Mr. Kite!". He was the son of circus proprietor James Kite. He is believed to have worked for Pablo Fanque's circus from 1843 to 1845
Elton John is Sean Lennon's godfather.
It was Paul McCartney, not Ringo Starr, who played drums on the Beatles "Back in the U.S.S.R." and "The Ballad of John and Yoko".
John Lennon and Harry Nilsson were ejected from L.A.'s Troubadour club for disrupting The Smother's Brothers act in the mid-1970.
Just hours before murdering John Lennon, Mark David Chapman got Lennon's autograph.
Among those who sang the chorus of the Beatles' "All You Need Is Love" were Marianne Faithful, Graham Nash, Jane Asher, Patti Boyd, Keith Moon and Mick Jagger.
Former Beatles drummer Pete Best appeared on TV's "I've Got A Secret" in 1964.
At the end of the Beatles' song "A Day in the Life", an ultrasonic whistle, audible only to dogs, was recorded by Paul McCartney for his Shetland sheepdog.
The blistering guitar lead in George Harrison's song, "Taxman" is the exact same guitar part heard at the ending fade of the song. It was copied and re-recorded onto the end.
When the Beatles made their first appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show on February 9th, 1964, producers received over 50,000 applications for the 728 seats in the TV studio.
John Lennon and Paul McCartney wrote "I Want To Hold Your Hand" in the basement of Jane Asher's house. She was Paul's girlfriend, to whom he would later become engaged to, but never married.
One day while out riding with her dad, Stella McCartney stopped to stare at him. It had just come to her at that moment. She said, "You're Paul McCartney."
John Lennon often expressed his dislike for Winston Churchill, the former British Prime Minister that he was named after. He felt so strongly that he had his middle name changed from Winston to Ono after he married Yoko.
The Beatles 4th UK #1 single, "Can't Buy Me Love", had advanced sales of over 2.1 million, setting the record for the greatest advanced orders in the UK.
When The Beatles' single "Ticket to Ride" was first issued, the fine print under the title said "From the United Artists Release Eight Arms to Hold You", which was the original name for the film Help!
In February and March, 1964, The Beatles sold 60% of all the records sold in the U.S.
For their first two appearances on The Ed Sullivan Show, The Beatles were paid just $3500 per show. The expenses alone to bring them to America totaled over $50,000, which was paid for by their manager, Brian Epstein.
Including Ringo, there have been at least five drummers for The Beatles. Norman Chapman (for the Silver Beatles), Tommy Moore, Pete Best and Jimmy Nichol.
While the Beatles were still struggling to establish themselves, they were turned down by five different British record companies.
The mighty final chord of The Beatles' "A Day In The Life" was played by ten hands in three pianos simultaneously: Lennon's, McCartney's, Starr's, George Martin's and Mal Evan's.
"Layla" was written by Eric Clapton to steal George Harrison's wife, Patty Boyd. Layla was the nickname Eric had given her inspired by a Turkish legend in which Layla was the main character.
According to Paul McCartney, the "you" in "Got to Get You Into My Life" was marijuana.
In the Beatles' "A Day In The Life," there's a bit in the orchestral score where the musicians were told "start on the lowest note your instrument can play, and gradually work your way up to the highest note your instrument can play." (and they did)
Ringo Starr's first wife, Maureen Cox, later married Isaac Tigrett, one of the founders of the Hard Rock Cafe chain.
In the 1950s, Paul McCartney's father lead a combo called Jim Mac's Jazz Band, where he played piano and trumpet. When he was a boy, Paul said that someday he hoped to be as good as his dad.
Vee Jay Records was the most successful Black owned and operated record company before Motown. The firm was founded in 1953 by Vivian Carter (the "Vee") and her husband, James Bracken (the "Jay").
The Beatles recorded two different versions of the song "Strawberry Fields Forever". One was a half tone higher and slightly faster than the other. The group couldn't decide which rendition they liked better and finally asked producer George Martin if he could put them together somehow. When one was slowed down, it fit perfectly with the other, resulting in the song we know today.
John Lennon and Paul McCartney were always on the look-out for interesting titles to write a song around. They did just that when a tired Ringo uttered "God, it's been a hard day’s night" and again when a chauffeur told Paul, "I'm very busy at the moment. I've been working eight days a week."
Paul McCartney wrote "Hey Jude" for Julian Lennon after John's divorce from his first wife, Cynthia. The song's original name was "Hey Julian", then changed to "Hey Jules" before settling on the final title.
In 1963, artists managed by Brian Epstein placed 85 songs in the Top Ten of the British record charts.
In 1965, with The Beatles, The Rolling Stones and The Mamas And Papas all turning out big hits, the Grammy Award for Best Performance By a Vocal Group was won by The Anita Kerr Singers for "We Dig Mancini".
When John Lennon's Aunt Mimi met George Harrison for the first time, she took an instant dis-like to him because of his deep Liverpool accent. She later told John "You always seem to like the low-class types, don't you John?"
In 1963, after The Beatles had moved to London, John Lennon had a conversation with fashion model Sonny Freeman, who told John that her father had been shot by a German soldier for his anti-Nazi views. John told her that he didn't think he was going to live very long either. He had a premonition that he would be shot too.
Originally the title of The Beatles' ninth album was supposed to be "A Doll's House", but that was scrapped when it was discovered that a British band called Family had already issued an LP called "Music in a Doll's House". After some design problems, the double disc effort was simply issued in a plain white jacket, embossed with the words "The Beatles". Fans would call it "The White Album".
When Paul McCartney and John Lennon first played "She Loves You" for Paul's dad, he said "That's very nice son, but there's enough of these Americanisms around. Couldn't you sing "She loves you, yes, yes, yes!". The duo collapsed in a fit of laughter.
The off-duty policeman whose car struck and killed John Lennon's mother, Julia, later became a postman. One of his assigned routes took him to the Forthlin Road home of Paul McCartney, where he dropped the mail while Paul and an unsuspecting John practiced their guitars.
The Ed Sullivan Show was a TV institution on Sunday nights in America for 23 years and was a springboard for nearly every major music act in the 60s. The show was canceled in 1971 and Sullivan passed away of esophageal cancer at age 73 just over three years later, coincidentally on a Sunday night.
In 1963, when "You're The Devil In Disguise" was debuted to a British audience on the BBC television show Juke Box Jury, celebrity guest John Lennon voted the song “a miss”, saying that Elvis Presley was "like Bing Crosby now." It turned out that John's prediction was wrong and the song would rise to the top of the UK chart.
To help launch the new Beatles' recording company, Apple Records, the firm encouraged new acts to send in their audition tapes. They signed Bad Finger, Mary Hopkins and a host of others, but turned down the up-and-coming David Bowie.
In 1964, The Beatles topped the Cashbox Magazine record chart for sixteen straight weeks with four different songs. From January 25th until May 16th the Fab Four lead the best sellers list with "I Want To Hold Your Hand" (8 weeks), "She Loves You" (2 weeks), "Twist And Shout" (1 week) and "Can't Buy Me Love" (5 weeks). Their streak was interrupted by Louie Armstrong's "Hello Dolly" for one week before "Love Me Do" put them back on top for another week.
When asked if he thought Ringo was the best drummer in the world, John Lennon replied "Ringo's not even the best drummer in The Beatles."
On the January 4th, 1962 issue of Mersey Beat magazine, which shows The Beatles as Liverpool's top band, Paul McCartney's last name is misspelled "McArtrey". The group's names were provided to the publication by John Lennon, who either didn't know how to spell Paul's name or was playing a trick on him.
The inspiration for the line "I read the news today, oh boy, four thousand holes in Blackburn Lancashire" in The Beatles' song "A Day In The Life" came to John Lennon after he read a newspaper article about a plan to fill 4,000 potholes in the roads of the Northwestern English town of Blackburn.
According to Bill Harry, founder of the UK music magazine Mersey Beat and personal friend of The Beatles, the rumor that the group took their name from a line in the movie The Wild Ones, is totally false, as the movie was not released in England until 1968. Nor did it have anything to do with "Beat" music, a term that didn't come out until after the band was established. He says it was Stu Sutcliffe who suggested "Let's have a name like The Crickets."
When George Harrison visited his sister Louise in Benton, Illinois in September, 1963, he brought home two significant items: a Rickenbacker 425 guitar and a copy of James Ray's "Got My Mind Set On You". George's re-worked version of that 1961 recording would become his third and final Billboard chart topper as well as reaching number two in the UK in 1988.
In the first two years after the Beatles fired drummer Pete Best, they would gross over 24 million dollars. Best went to work as a baker, earning 8 pounds a week.
None of The Beatles were invited to attend the private funeral of their manager Brian Epstein. They did however hold a memorial service for their former leader a few weeks later.
The Beatles at one point were paying to work. Their taxes were over 100%.
John Lennon shoplifted one of his harmonicas from a store in Holland. He recorded 'Love Me Do' with it.
The Beatles recorded "Strawberry Fields Forever" during the sessions for "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" in the fall of 1966. The song was left off the album, but appeared on 1968's "Magical Mystery Tour". During the time when the Beatles were recording Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, the Monkees were touring England; the Beatles hosted a party for them. The meeting partially inspired the line in the Monkees' tune "Randy Scouse Git," written by Dolenz, which read, "the four kings of EMI are sitting stately on the floor." Nesmith attended the "A Day in the Life" sessions at Abbey Road Studios; he can be seen in the Beatles' home movies, including one scene where he is conversing with John Lennon who called him Monkee Man, and would go on to call the group the "Marx Brothers of Rock".
The former location of the Apple Shop, the building has since been torn down
The Apple shop was a retail store that opened on December 7, 1967 located in a now demolished building on the corner of Baker Street and Paddington Street, Marylebone, London, and that closed on 30 June 1968. The shop was one of the first business ventures made by The Beatles' fledgling Apple Corps. The concept of the shop was that everything in it was for sale. The aim, as described by Paul McCartney, was to create 'a beautiful place where beautiful people can buy beautiful things'. In practice the stock was overwhelmingly fashion garments and accessories. John Lennon vetoed the use of the word ‘boutique’ but the venture has come to be popularly referred to as the “Apple Boutique”. The Dutch designers, Simon Posthuma and Marijke Koeger had met Simon Hayes and Barry Finch in London and formed The Fool, design collective. Pattie Harrison was familiar with them and introduced them to The Beatles who, in September 1967, gave The Fool $200,000 to design and stock the first outlet of a planned national chain of “Apple” shops. The Beatles business took a lease on 94 Baker Street, a Georgian town house dating from 1795, and the ground floor was proposed for the Apple shop despite the location being remote from the centers of fashion and design of 1960’s London. The launch party on December 5, 1967 was attended by John Lennon and George Harrison with their wives. John Lennon’s friend Peter Shotton managed the store with Pattie Harrison's sister Jenny Boyd. The Apple shop was a financial disaster. Theft was endemic. Customers helped themselves to the stock as did staff members, who had difficulty determining which things people had come in with and which they had picked up in the shop. The ethos of the venture and those operating it was antipathetic to making accusations of shop-lifting or of calling for the police. The Fool's members also made a habit of taking their choice of the merchandise. The retail business lost money at an alarming rate, eventually running to $400 000 and the shop was closed on 30 July 1968. The Beatles, their wives and girlfriends came the night before, to take what they wanted. The next morning it was announced that all the remaining stock was to be given away on the basis of one item per person. Word spread quickly and the shop was empty within hours. The public, numbering in the hundreds nearly rioted trying to get their share and the police attended. As a final bad judgment gesture at the end of August 1968, Paul McCartney used the windows of the closed shop to advertise the Beatles first Apple Records single release, scraping "Hey Jude" in the whitewash on the glass. This was misconstrued as anti-Semitic graffiti, 'Jude' being German for 'Jew' and the graffiti was removed. Peter Shotton moved on to other jobs at Apple Corps. Jenny Boyd dated singer Donovan and later married drummer Mick Fleetwood.
A Hard Day's Night (film) trivia
Norm and Shake are based off real-life Beatles road managers Neil Aspinal and Mal Evans.
When The Beatles are being chased onto a train in the beginning of the film, real fans, not actors, are chasing them.
The word "Beatles" is never mentioned in the movie.
Originally the film was called "The Beatles" and then "Beatlemania," but the title was changed after Ringo said "It's been a hard days..... night" after a day of filming.
The film has several connections to James Bond. First of all, Ringo is invited to Le Circle gambling club, where James Bond appears in the first James Bond film, Dr. No, in 1962. Both films were released by United Artists. Also, when Ringo is walking around solo, he is accompanied by an instrumental version of This Boy. Vic Flick, the guitarist who played on the first James Bond theme, played on this instrumental version of This Boy. Also a James Bond connection, Richard Vernon, who played Smithers, the man who lectures Bond on gold in Goldfinger, and Margaret Nolan, the girl known as "Dink" at the hotel swimming pool in Goldfinger appear in this film.
Phil Collins can be seen in the final concert scene. He is wearing glasses.
Director Richard Lester makes a cameo appearance backstage while they play Tell Me Why
The Beatles shared the bill with Richard Brambell at the Royal Variety Performance in November 1963.
When the shooting began, The Beatles weren't members of the British Actors' Union, so they were inducted on the set with Wilfrid Brambell proposing the membership and Norman Rossington seconding the motion.
When Paul's grandfather (Wilfrid Brambell) tells Ringo that he should be parading instead of reading a book, Ringo is reading "Anatomy Of A Murder."
In the scene where John is being confused for someone else, before he leaves, he says "She looks more like him than I do." This line was dubbed in after filming.
A sweater, worn by Victor Spinetti in the film, was owned by him. He had gotten it as a gift and later gave it to a fan club member.
When John is asked if he has any hobbies, he writes something down and gives it to the reporter. Although it is not seen in the film, he wrote down the word 'tits.'
George's future wife, Pattie Boyd is one of the schoolgirls on the train. She is seen three times; they are the first schoolgirls encountered on the train, Paul talks to her and her friend up, and she sits next to Paul during the song I Should Have Known Better. All of these scene occurred on the train.
When Ringo trips over a tire in the scene where he's walking by himself, the tire had to be thrown by him numerous times, but when the child actor who he meets in the scene David Janson threw it, he got it right the first time.
At the beginning of the film, The Beatles are running from a group of fans. George accidentally tripped, ripping the suit he was wearing. He quickly recovers and laughs about it. It was decided that they would keep this shot in the movie.
Originally, when The Beatles were running in the field, I'll Cry Instead was intended to be used, but Can't Buy Me Love was used instead because it fit the mood better.
Even though all four Beatles attended the premiere, none of them are believed to have stayed for the whole show.
Ringo was praised for the scene where he walks around by himself, seemingly lonely. In reality, he was extremely hung over when it was filmed.
Brian Epstein, The Beatles' manager appears in the hotel lobby right before the press conference scene.
Two scenes were filmed but not used. The first had them getting stuck in a traffic jam with their chauffer, the other had Paul meeting a Shakespearean actress in her dressing room.
Mal Evans, the Beatles' road manager appears when John and Anna Quayle are talking. He quickly carries a cello in between them.
In 2007, Ringo's answer to the question "Are you a mod or a rocker?", "I'm a mocker" was named number 58 in Premiere's 100 greatest movie quotes of all time.
All American copies of the soundtrack album are produced by United Artists Records, because The Beatles' American label, Capitol Records, did not have a contract with The Beatles that covered releasing film scores, so they could not produce the album.
The Beatles' producer, George Martin, got an Academy Award for best film score, but The Beatles themselves did not even get nominated.
A deleted scene included Paul flirting and dancing with a ballerina before her performance. This was cut to save time, and because of the fact that they already had the subplot of Paul's grandfather.
When John cuts a measuring tape in half and says "I Now Declare This Bridge Open," he tried several place names to be opened in earlier takes, such as synagogues and fish and chip stands.
The person acting as The Beatles' tailor in the film is their real-life tailor.
When they are in the dressing room, a copy of John's first book, In His Own Write can be seen on a shelf.
Paul's grandfather is mentioned as being "very clean" as a running joke in the film. This references Wilfrid Brambell's previous role in Steptoe and Son, which had the catch phrase "You dirty old man."
Screenwriter Alun Owen claimed 'grotty' was popular Liverpool slang for grotesque, when trying to get George to say the line. None of The Beatles had heard of it before, making them believe Owen made it up. It became popular because of The Beatles shortly afterwards.
When the Beatles are filmed running in a field, a body double filled in for John, who was off promoting his book In His Own Write. The close-up shots of John were filmed later.
When the camera pans 360 degrees around Paul during And I Love Her, the camera was hanging from strings marionette-style.
The film premiered on Ringo's 24th birthday.
Help! (Film) Trivia
The actors had 16 days, meaning 10 pages per day to memorize.
In the final "I'm going to miss the sacrifice" scene where Klang's men, The Beatles, Ahme and the good police of the Bahamas are on the beach where they are rolling around in the sand fighting, a strange shot of a pair of very feminine legs and skin covered with sand is inserted for a flash of a second.
One scene cut from the movie had George Harrison, disguised as Ringo Starr, sitting in a tree house.
In the beach scene towards the end of the film, John Lennon had an appointment and could not be present. Another actor stood in for him.
The swimmer who pops up twice asking for the White Cliffs of Dover, once in the Alps, and once in the Bahamas, is Mal Evans, road manager for The Beatles.
The song "A Hard Day's Night" can be heard instrumentally throughout the movie.
While filming in the Bahamas, The Beatles rented sports cars for each of them to drive in. According to various stories, the boy drove to a rock quarry and began having races and smashing into each other for fun. There is filmed evidence of this fact: in the theatrical trailer, there are excerpts of the Beatles driving around in the quarry mixed with the movie footage.
According to still photos included in the "making of" documentary on the new Special Edition DVD, one of the features in Ringo's apartment space that was not used in the movie was a little dining room table and chairs in the vending machine wall that would pop out in the same manner as Paul's organ.
George Harrison was introduced to the sitar during the filming of the club scene, which features an Indian band playing an instrumental sitar version the song "Hard Day's Night".
A scene cut from the film, was to have been within the attempts to kill Ringo, (within the five attempts), it involved Ringo making a phone call in a phone box, and a blotched sacrifice attempt made within the phone box.
Beatles' reading material: The book John takes from the shelf and kisses before settling down to read, is his own "A Spaniard in the Works." Meanwhile, Paul has a selection of Superman comic books atop his organ. (In the novelization of the movie, the book John selects is "Les Liaisons Dangereuses", aka "Dangerous Liaisons".)
The pub scene, and the scene in the Bahamas, at "The Temple" are both shot on the same set. The trap-door is used in both scenes.
The Bahamas scenes, which are the final ones, were actually the first to be shot. The Alps scenes were filmed second, and the England scenes were filmed last. One scene which never appeared in the final film involves Ringo milking a cow in the back room. It was supposed to take place just before John takes a book from the shelf and sits down in his pit.
The scenes set in the Bahamas and the Alps were written expressly to satisfy the Beatles' demands for both a sunny, tropical locale and a skiing holiday, respectively. Another reason for filming in the Bahamas was the tax-breaks it offered, and Cavalcade Productions was formed there to receive the Beatles' appearance fees.
When John and Ringo are walking along the sidewalk right before Ringo "posts his letter" they are reciting the first stanza of John's poem, "I Sat Belonely" from John's "In His Own Write".
According to The Beatles, they were experimenting in marijuana at the time this movie was filmed. That explains why they flub a lot of their lines or their lines don't make much sense.
The Hindu god that Klang and his occult worships is "Kali" (Also known as Kali-Ma). Kali is the eastern equivalent to the "Grim Reaper". She is also the god worshiped by the occult in Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (1984).
The Bahamas, which is where the "Another Girl" sequence was filmed, was actually rather cold during filming. This why all the Beatles except Paul are wearing long-sleeve shirts in what looks like very hot weather.
George Harrison, whom Richard Lester said was the best actor of the Beatles, has more material in this film than in the previous Beatle film.
Three premieres were held for the film.
There are many references to the James Bond films, as United Artists also distributed the films of that series.
There was a lengthy scene in the movie (running around 10 minutes) which was filmed but never used. This follows the Beatles escape from Clang and before the elevator scene between John and Ringo, and involved them hiding out at the "Sam Ahab School of Transcendental Elocution", an acting school run by Sam Ahab (played by Frankie Howerd). Sam's pupil Lady Macbeth (a young Wendy Richard) performs a meditation song which causes George to block his ears with earplugs while Clang and his men (hidden in the fireplace) play a piece of music which sends everyone else into a trance. A struggle ensues, as Clang attempts to chop Ringo's hand off with a hatchet to retrieve the ring but the gang are fought off by the non-hypnotized George. After the men flee (and the hatchet is hurled by Clang into a mirror) the others are revived and the scene ends with John yanking the hatchet from the (non-broken) mirror, handing it to Lady Macbeth, and saying, "Is this a chopper that you see before you?". Although filmed this scene has not yet been discovered and may no longer exist.
In the deleted scene with Frankie Howerd and Wendy Richard, Frankie's character is "Sam Ahab", spelled backwards it's "Bahamas", where The Beatles eventually wind up.
While the Beatles are attempting to solve Ringo's ring problem at the jeweler's, George can be seen quietly shoplifting various jewels and slipping them into his overcoat pockets!
There is also a second scene involving a gun, which takes place during the Beatles' visit to Buckingham Palace. This time, the gun fires; nobody is hit, but all four Beatles drop reflexively to the floor.
It is a popular belief that the first time John appeared in public wearing his trademark glasses was in film How I Won the War (1967). This is not true; John can be seen wearing his granny glasses during the scene in which the Beatles are in disguise at an airport, waiting for a flight to the Bahamas. In an earlier scene at the Indian restaurant, John can be seen spooning the same pair - or same type - of glasses out of his soup.
In several early scenes, Klang and his stooges are using a "Mr. Whippy" ice cream truck as a hideout. American viewers might not be aware that Mr. Whippy is a real ice cream franchise, the equivalent of our own Mister Softee; it's based in New Zealand.
The "ferocious man-eating tiger" which terrifies Ringo in the cellar of the pub is actually only a cub; it appears to be about ten months old. A real full-grown tiger would be MUCH larger. In addition to this, Ringo was also behind several inches of glass, separating between him and the tiger .
One of the film's original taglines was, "Please do not reveal the beginning of this movie to your friends (they'd never believe it, anyway)". This is a spoof of the tagline from 'Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho (1960), which implored its audience, "Please do not reveal the ending of this movie to your friends (it's the only one we have)".
A miniaturized Paul is wearing flesh-colored bathing trunks during his brief (no pun intended) "nude scene" in "The Exciting Adventures of Paul On The Floor". The discarded chewing gum wrapper which he uses to wrap around himself as a towel is clearly intended to resemble a Wrigley's Spearmint Gum wrapper, although no brand name is shown.
The horse that Paul is astride in the "Ticket to Ride" sequence is a Haflinger horse, which originated in the Austrian Alps.
When George warns everyone about the "fiendish thingy," he accidentally touches the breasts of the woman standing behind him. She does not look happy about it.
By Paul and Ringo's own admission, they were so stoned on pot the day they shot the scene where Dr. Foot and Algerman tried to blow them up in the Austrian Alps that when George screamed his line "It's an fiendish thingy! Run Ringo!" Both Ringo and Paul ran over the next hill.
Originally, the Beatles were going to make a western picture. The story was going to be set in Texas and involved the four of them fighting over the affections of a cattle baron's daughter. There are even publicity photos showing them on horseback and wearing cowboy outfits. However the film shut down production and the Beatles ended up making this film instead.
In the pub scene, the other three Beatles are persuading Ringo to have his ring finger amputated. Ringo refuses, insisting that he will miss the digit. Paul counters with, "You don't miss your tonsils!" Ringo actually underwent a tonsillectomy two months prior to filming.
Beatles producer George Martin joined the Beatles in the Alps for a skiing vacation, while they filmed there, but hardly got to enjoy it; he broke his ankle the very first day. Also, while Martin had provided the instrumental soundtrack for A Hard Day's Night (1964), he and Richard Lester hadn't gotten along, and Lester chose Ken Thorne for "Help’s instrumental score; in Martin's own words, "I was included out."
The lockup scene was filmed at a psychiatric hospital in the Bahamas. Not long afterward, the band attended a dinner with the Minister of Finance, where John Lennon criticized the hospital's conditions.
During the filming of the bicycle scene, a Krishna devotee approached all four Beatles with copies of a book about Hare Krishna, sparking the interest George Harrison would carry the rest of his life.
George Harrison said that during the filming of the sequence in which the Beatles threw a hose out the window and the army guards all fall down, they were in hysterics laughing and the scene took almost a day to film.
Richard Lester said that at the store Aspreys in Bond Street, John Lennon spent £8,000 during a two minute break.
During the closing credits, the Beatles and their co-stars take turns appearing as reflections in a giant ruby. During this sequence, George can be heard in voice-over, proclaiming "'I Need You' written by George Harrison!" and repeating this same information twice. As the movie ends, John's image is the last that appears in the ruby.
According to Paul McCartney, the script was designed around their requests that the story involves them going to places like the Austrian Alps and the Bahamas because they had never been there before.
Ken Thorne's musical score is largely made up of elaborate orchestral re-arrangements of "A Hard Day's Night", "You Can't Do That", and "From Me to You" by The Beatles.
Paul McCartney claimed to have named the song "Eleanor Rigby" after co-star Eleanor Bron.
"Help!" was such a late decision for the film title, that when Capitol Records released the first single, "Ticket To Ride" / "Yes It Is", the A-Side was credited as being from the film, "Eight Arms To Hold You".
The original title of the movie was "Eight Arms to Hold You", although no one really liked it much and by the time the movie was edited, it didn't really fit the storyline at all. John Lennon had written the song "Help!" around the same time, and it suited the movie's theme so well it became the title song.
Due to time constraints, the film was edited while it was being shot. So by day Richard Lester would shoot the film, and by night he would edit any scenes that had been completed.
The Beatles were dissatisfied with this movie, saying that they "felt like extras in their own movie".
Throughout the filming, Paul McCartney drove director Richard Lester to distraction by constantly playing the melody of a new song he was working on called "Scrambled Eggs". By the time filming had wrapped, "Scrambled Eggs" had acquired new lyrics and a new title: "Yesterday".
In the scene where TNT is placed underground, one of the boxes says "EQUAL TO EXACTLY ONE MILLIONTH OF ALL THE HIGH EXPLOSIVE EXPLODED IN ONE WEEK OF THE SECOND WORLD WAR."
Ticket to Ride was the first Beatles song that broke the 3-minute mark
Can't Buy Me Love was recorded in Paris
Three pianos were used to create the final note in the song A Day in the Life?
Donovan contributed the lyrics "Sky of Blue, Sea of Green," for Yellow Submarine
Strawberry Fields Forever and Penny Lane were pulled from the album Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band and released as singles
The Beatles' three songs that have a parenthesis in the title are Norwegian Wood (This Bird Has Flown); I Want You (She's So Heavy) and You Know My Name (Look up the Number)
Paul McCartney's first name is James
From 1962 to 1970, how many songs did The Beatles recorded 214 songs
A Painfully Brief Beatles Time Line for the 1960s
January 1960 - A friend of John's from Liverpool College of Art, Stu Sutcliffe is asked to join the group as the bass guitarist. The band decides to change its name to Silver Beatles.
August 1960 - Pete Best becomes the group's drummer. The group makes a final change to their name and are now known as simply the Beatles. They go on to play various venues in Hamburg including such clubs as Indra, Kaiserkeller, Top Ten and Star.
December 27, 1960 - The Beatles return to Liverpool and play at Litherland Town Hall. With their popularity becoming secure, they go on to play gigs North West of Britain for the next two years.
April 1961 - Stuart Sutcliffe decides to quit the Beatles.
November 1961 - Brian Epstein becomes the Beatles' manager.
January 1, 1962 - The Beatles audition unsuccessfully for Decca Records in London.
April 10, 1962 - Stuart Sutcliffe dies of a cerebral hemorrhage.
June 6, 1962 - After auditioning for George Martin, a producer at EMI, he signs them. He goes to be their producer for their entire career.
August 16, 1962 - Pete Best is dismissed from the Beatles.
August 18, 1962 - Ringo Starr joins the band.
October 5, 1962 - "Love Me Do", the Beatles' first single, is released in the United Kingdom. It rises to #17 on the British charts.
January 11, 1963 - The Beatles' second single, "Please Please Me," is released in the U.K.. On February 22 it reaches number one on the British charts and stays there for two weeks.
February 11, 1963 - The Beatles record their first full album, "Please Please Me." The complete recording only took them one day.
March 22, 1963 - The album "Please Please Me" is released in the U.K. and becomes a huge success. It remains number one on the UK charts for 29 weeks.
July 12, 1963 - The album "Please Please Me" is released in the United States under the title of, "Introducing the Beatles".
October 1963 - Beatlemania spreads throughout Europe.
October 13, 1963 - Beatles appear on ITV's "Sunday Night at the London Palladium" which is televised to over 15 million viewers.
November 4, 1963 - Performing for the Queen Mother, Princess Margaret and Lord Snowdon, the Beatles play at the Royal Command Performance. Before starting the song "Twist and Shout", John entertains the crowd with a comment, "Will the people in the cheaper seats clap their hands? And the rest of you, if you'll just rattle your jewelry."
November 22, 1963 - The Beatles release "With the Beatles" in the U.K., It reaches the number one spot on the British charts and stays there for 21 weeks.
November 29, 1963 - The single "I Want To Hold Your Hand" is released in the U.K. and immediately hits number one on the charts.
December 26 , 1963 - "I Want To Hold Your Hand" is released in the United States and spends seven weeks in the number one spot on the charts.
1964 - 66
January 20, 1964 - "Meet the Beatles" is released in the United States. It remains in the number one position on Billboard's chart for 11 weeks.
February 7, 1964 - The Beatles arrive in the United States.
February 9, 1964 - The Beatles perform on "The Ed Sullivan Show". According to the Nielsen ratings, they are watched by over 73 million people. During the show they perform five songs, "She Loves You," "I Saw Her Standing There," "All My Loving," "Till There Was You" and "I Want To Hold Your Hand."
February 11, 1964 - The Beatles perform at the Washington Coliseum in Washington, D.C.
February 12, 1964 - The Beatles perform at Carnegie Hall in New York City.
February 16, 1964 - The Beatles make their second appearance on "The Ed Sullivan Show." They perform "From Me to You," "This Boy," "All My Loving," "I Saw Her Standing There" and closed with "I Want to Hold Your Hand."
February 23, 1964 - The Beatles appear for the third time on "The Ed Sullivan Show," this time with a taped performance "Twist and Shout" and "Please Please Me" and closed the show once again with "I Want To Hold Your Hand".
March 2, 1964 - The Beatles begin filming their first film, "A Hard Day's Night." They take eight weeks to complete it.
March 31, 1964 - The Beatles hold the top five slots on Billboard's chart: (1) Can't Buy Me Love, (2) Twist and Shout, (3) She Loves You, (4) I Want To Hold Your Hand (5) Please Please Me.
April 4, 1964 - The Beatles hold 14 slots on Billboard's Hot 100 chart.
July 6, 1964 - "A Hard Day's Night" premieres in London.
July 10, 1964 - The album "A Hard Day's Night" is released in the United Kingdom. It shortly reaches number one on the charts. In August the album is released in the United States where it also reaches number one.
August 11, 1964 - "A Hard Day's Night" opens in America.
August 19, 1964 - The Beatles begin a USA/Canada tour with a concert at the Cow Palace in San Francisco, California.
December 4, 1964 - The album "Beatles For Sale" is released in the U.K. and as with previous releases it hits number one.
February 23, 1965 - Shooting begins on the Beatles' second film, "Help!"
June 12, 1965 - The Beatles are named Members of the British Empire by the Queen, and in October they are presented with medals at Buckingham Palace.
July 29, 1965 - The Beatles second movie, "Help" opens in London.
August 6, 1965 - The album, "Help" is released in the U.K. and reaches number one both in the U.K. and the United States.
August 15, 1965 - The Beatles perform at New York's Shea Stadium. The concert grosses $304,000 U.S. dollars. The Beatles' share was $160,000.
December 3, 1965 - The album, "Rubber Soul" is released in the U.K. and reaches number one both in the U.K. and the United States.
August 5, 1966 - The album, "Revolver" is released in the U.K. and reaches number one both in the U.K. and the United States.
August 29, 1966 - The Beatles perform their last live concert, in San Francisco, California.
1967 - 69
June 1, 1967 - The album, "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" is released in the U.K. and reaches number one both in the U.K. and the United States. It also receives four Grammy Awards including Best Album.
June 25, 1967 - The Beatles perform "All You Need is Love" in "Our World," a two-hour satellite television program transmitted live by satellite to five continents and 24 countries.
August 27, 1967 - Brian Epstein dies. The Beatles are told of his death while they are visiting Maharishi Mahesh Yogi in Bangor, Wales.
November 27, 1967 - The album, "Magical Mystery Tour" is released in the U.S. and hits number one. It is released in the U.K. eleven days later missing three of the songs found on the U.S. release.
December 26, 1967 - "Magical Mystery Tour," an hour-long television special airs in the U.K.
February 1968 - The Beatles spent a few weeks in Rishikesh, India, to attend a seminar hosted by Maharishi.
May 14, 1968 - John and Paul appear on "The Tonight Show" to announce that their new company, Apple.
July 17, 1968 - "Yellow Submarine" premieres in London. It opens in America several months later.
November 22, 1968 - The album, "The Beatles" (better known as the White Album) is released and reaches number one both in the U.K. and the United States.
January 13, 1969 - The soundtrack album, "Yellow Submarine" is released in the U.S. and reaches number two both in the U.K. and the United States. Number one is still held by the White Album.
January 30, 1969 - The Beatles perform together for the last time live on the roof of Apple's London office. The performance can be seen in the movie documentary "Let It Be."
September, 1969 - John decides to leave the Beatles, but he does not announce it publicly because of current contract negotiations with EMI.
September 26, 1969 - The Beatles last album, "Abbey Road" is released in the U.K. and reaches number one both in the U.K. and the United States.
Unreleased Lennon/McCartney songs
The following songs are believed to have been written by John Lennon and Paul McCartney, but never officially released.
"Just Fun" (1957) was briefly sung during the Get Back sessions and performed by Paul McCartney on acoustic guitar during a sound check in Zurich in 2004.
"Keeping Looking That Way" (1957), "Looking Glass" (1957), and "That's My Woman" were performed live by the group from 1957 to 1959.
"Thinking of Linking" (1957) was recorded in 1994 by Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, and George Harrison, and was also recorded during the Get Back sessions.
"Too Bad About Sorrows" (1957) was recorded during the Get Back sessions.
"Winston's Walk" (1957) was an instrumental performed live in concert by the group from 1957 to 1960.
"Years Roll Along" (1957) was performed live by the group from 1957 to 1959.
"I'll Wait Till Tomorrow," (1960) "I've Been Thinking That You Love Me," (1960) and "Won't You Please Say Goodbye" (1960) were performed on January 3, 1969 during the Get Back sessions.
"Some Days," (1960) "Well Darling," (1960) "You Must Write Every day," (1960) and "You'll Be Mine" (1960) were recorded as demos at Paul's home circa April 1960. Other improvised instrumental songs with provisional titles based on dialogue heard in the recordings include "Cold As Ice," "Come On People," and "I Don't Know." "You'll Be Mine" was released on Anthology 1.
"I Fancy Me Chances" (1962) was performed live by the Beatles in 1962 and a 1969 recording from the Get Back sessions was later released on Let It Be... Naked.
"Pinwheel Twist" (1962) was played live by the Beatles in 1962.
"From Us To You" (1963) was a variation on "From Me To You" written for the BBC program of the same name and later released on Live at the BBC.
"Shirley's Wild Accordion" (1967) was an instrumental recorded on 12 October 1967 for the Magical Mystery Tour film.
"Carnival of Light" (1967)
"Commonwealth" (1969) was performed exclusively during the Get Back sessions.
"The Walk" (1969).
"Watching Rainbows" (1969).
"Give Me Some Truth" (1968) was recorded on January 3 and 7, 1969 during the Get Back sessions and later released by John Lennon (with alternate lyrics) on the album Imagine.
"Paul Is Dead"
So, was the "Paul Is Dead" incident a hoax, or perhaps a marketing ploy, or merely just a bunch of coincidences that all fit together nicely? It’s unclear why or who started the rumor started but the only thing it proved was almost anything could be misconstrued to validate someone’s belief but here’s the conspiracy theory of what happened. Supposedly, on Wednesday, November 9, 1966, at five O'clock, Paul McCartney was driving a motorcycle home from a relative’s house (Actually, on Wednesday, November 9, 1966, Paul McCartney was riding a motorcycle on his way to his Aunt’s house and had an accident.) when he spied an attractive meter maid, and inadvertently drove through a red light into a busy intersection and crashed into an oncoming car. Paul was dead and, worse yet, disfigured, including having his hair burned off, in the resulting crash and, because his teeth were knocked out, no dental records could be used to identify him. Only the other three Beatles and their manager knew the true story. To keep the Beatles money machine rolling a Paul McCartney look-alike contest was held, and the winner was a man named William Campbell (The winner was never announced, the story goes) who underwent plastic surgery to make him look even more like Paul. In 1969, the Paul is dead rumors started to surface and many more clues to the truth about Paul's death were said to be found in the Beatles music, especially when some were played backwards. Other clues were found on the album covers;
On Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band front cover the clues were said to be that all the figures on the cover are looking at a freshly dug grave. Paul is holding the musical instrument and its black, symbolizing death. Further, he is displaying three fingers, meaning only three Beatles left? This was the first album that the group wrote their name as "Beatles," rather than "The Beatles." Meaning that they were no longer The Beatles of old and to prove it, they say, the yellow hyacinth in the shape of a left-handed guitar only has three strings. The doll in the red, black and white stripes has a car model on her lap next to her right hand. This model with red interior is supposed to symbolize the car Paul was killed in and the red interior is his blood. The other three Beatles' are standing sideways behind the drum, except Paul who is standing forward. Now here’s a good one, on the drum is written in the center "Lonely Hearts." Using a mirror, place it perpendicular to the center of the drum. Splitting the words "Lonely Hearts" in half, the combined writing reads - 1 ONE 1 X HE DIE meaning, they say, that the "1 One 1" equal three, or that Paul is gone, and the "X" is meant to cross out Paul and the hand raised over Paul's head means "death." On the back cover Paul is facing back, George's right-hand index finger is pointing directly to the words "five o'clock," the supposed time of the car crash and the song lyrics "Within You, Without You," are printed over Paul's body.
Clues found in the albums songs include Lovely Rita’s line "When I caught a glimpse of Rita," and "I took her home, I nearly made it." A Day in The Life: "He blew his mind out in a car, he didn't notice that the lights had changed. A crowd of people stood and stared, they'd seen his face before..." Good Morning, Good Morning "Nothing to do to save his life." "People running around it's five o'clock." She's Leaving Home "Wednesday morning at five o'clock." Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band The reference to Billy Shears is supposed to refer to Billy Campbell, the Paul look-alike.
Clues found Magical Mystery Tour Album include Paul is in the "black" walrus suit on the cover, in the booklet, Ringo's drums read "Love the 3 Beatles.", in the photo of the Beatles in white tails, Paul is the only one with a black carnation, the other three have red flowers. When the album cover is held to a mirror, the word "Beatles" is a phone number, 231-7438. The legend is if the number is called a recording came on saying, "you're getting closer." In the song I Am the Walrus, at the end the words from King Lear heard "O, untimely death!" and combined with the legend "The Walrus Was Paul." It’s another clue.
In Yellow Submarine, the clues are said to be found on the covers.) Lennon's hand is raised over Paul's head, indicating "death."
On The Beatles (The White Album) the song and term Glass Onion is supposed to mean a coffin with a glass top and the 'Don't Pass Me By: "You were in a car crash...." and Revolution 9, in which the words, "Number nine, number nine," repeated many times are supposed to say when played backwards, "dead man, turn me on dead man." The reference to the number 9 is supposed to be that of McCartney having nine letters.
On the Abbey Road Album it’s the way the Beatles' dress - Lennon in white for a holy man, Ringo comes next in black as the undertaker and George, in jeans, is the grave digger. Paul is in bare feet. The police vehicle parked to the right in the photograph is a morgue wagon (It wasn’t) and the Volkswagen parked on the left side of the street has a tag that reads, "LMW 28IF which was construed to mean "LMW - Linda McCartney Weeps" and "28IF" means that Paul would have been 28 years old IF he had lived.