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The Beatles follows the extraordinary development of four self-taught


musicians from Liverpool

who

revolutionized the world of popular

music and created a treasury of songs astonishing for


innovation.
until their

From

the time of 'Love

Me

their variety

breakup in 1970, they consistently explored

tional territory

with each

Lonely Hearts Club

new

Band in

sophisticated imagery,

By

recording.

new composi-

the time of

Sgt. Pepper's

1967, they were writing songs steeped in

and had added harpsichords,

sitars,

running tapes and orchestral instruments to their original


bass

and drum format. Well before

Sgt. Pepper,

who saw

in their early

work an

backwardguitar,

though, the Beatles

were enthusiastically embraced by composers and


training,

and

Do', their 1962 debut single,

critics

of classical

originality that transcended

both the ambitions and traditional limitations of pop music.


Discussion of the Beatles' music

is

expanded here by a consider-

ation not only of the group's commercially released disks but also of
rare

how some

broader evolution

with

folk,

in the

is

presented within the context of the group's

- from

the skiffle and dance band, via

country and electronic music, through to

extended suite that closes Abbey

Road- and

its

flirtations

its final

flowering

Allan Kozinn has been a music

and has

also written for

Gramophone, among
the world.

He

is

many

1967

The Guitar: The

(courtesy of Rex

Features Ltd)

Back cover, Paul McCartney

1964 (photograph by
Richard Rosser, courtesy of

Rex Features

Ltd)

High

the

Fidelity,

New

York Times since

Opus, Keynote and

Elman and the Romantic

History,

The

DO >%

c3

other music and arts magazines around

the author of Mischa

a co-author of

Front cover, John Lennon


c.

critic for

CT
CO

set against the

backdrop of the popular culture explosion of the 1960s.

1977,

cd
=3

of their milestone recordings took shape in the

studio. This study

and

working tapes which illuminate the compositional process and

reveal

Players,

Style

The Music.

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CD

Phaidon Press Limited

Wharf

Regent's

All Saints Street

London Nl 9PA

First

published 1995

1995 Phaidon

7148 3203

ISBN

Press Limited

CIP catalogue record for

available from the

reserved.

All rights

publication
retrieval

or by

British

No

this

book

part of

this

may be reproduced,

system or transmitted,

any means,

is

Library

in

stored

in

any form

electronic, mechanical,

photocopying, recording or otherwise,


without the prior permission of Phaidon
Press Limited.

Printed

in

Singapore

Frontispiece, the Beatles


in

1962, poised

to

revolutionize popular music.

They

are, from

Paul

McCartney, Ringo

Starr,

left to right,

John Lennon and

George

Harrison.

Contents

Preface

Introduction

15

Chapter

From Quarry Men


37

Chapter

to Beatles 1957-61

Liverpool Dance Halls 1961-2


57

Chapter

Beatlemania in England 1963


77

Chapter 4

The
93

Beatles

Chapter

Conquer America 1964

Hard Days For


113

Sale 1964

Chapter 6

Help! and Rubber Soul 1965


135

Chapter 7

Towards
161

Chapter

Sgt.

Pepper 1966-7

Mystery Tours and Discord 1967-8


185

Chapter 9

The

Final Year 1969

210

Epilogue

222

Further Reading

226

Selective

233

Videography

234

Index

Discography

fhe Beatles

Preface

was nine years old when

Want

'I

Hold Your Hand' and

to

'She

Loves You' began to be heard ceaselessly on American radio, but


unlike most of

my

friends,

madness. Naturally,
the Beatles'

what

remember

and spending afternoons with

and Beatles wigs, and who

records

miming

Still, I

had

reservations.

had been

lessons,

a pupil of Liszt

framed

though, that

in

cars, girls,

did not give up

1964

was

began to see the

after

musical energies

full

light, or at least part

On some

of teenagers cruised

To

hell

level, as that

was that made the

it

infectious.

from that day

as a lesser

convertible drove past

listened closely

Beatles'

from then on, and the more

released

and

the music tick, a

would have

inclined to rewrite their

new

musical

and

began won-

did, the

thought

Beatles record

had

rules

dis-

would be

to start over again, since the Beatles

own

as the

music so energizing and

more ingenious the music seemed. Yet whenever

made

was

Liszt's cigar butts!

of 'She Loves You' disappeared into the distance,

covered what

house

past. It

a nine-year-old, that

with

studies of classical music, but

dering what
I

of it.

my teacher's

down. 'She Loves You' was blasting from

music, fun.

my

a collection of Liszt's

waited outside

woman whose

one of those piano

stopped thinking of the Beatles' work

sub-species.
strains

It

and everyone was singing along. To

life:

cards

Beatles

away the hours

my own

- and who kept

in her studio.

a convertible, with the top

was the

liked to while

was devoting

On a warm spring afternoon, as


for my father to collect me, a car
the radio,

who had

music, and was studying the piano with a

cigar butts,

gum

collecting Beatles
friends

songs using brooms as surrogate guitars.

Beatles'

to classical

in the

appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show, eager to see

the fuss was about.

all

that year,

father

first

was not immediately swept up

was among the tens of millions who watched

seemed

every time they walked into the

recording studio.

More than

three decades

later,

the music of

many of the

Beatles'

contemporaries seems quaint and time-bound - great fun for

Preface

moments, and

nostalgic

much

melodies and

harmonies,
their songs

lyrics, their

still

snapshot of an exciting time, but not

And

fresh.

after listening to

what must be thousands of times,

subtleties that

new

secrets after

of great

approach to instrumental textures and vocal

seem remarkably

and

as a

more. The Beatles' music has worn well by comparison. Their

had not been apparent

many

listenings

is,

can

before.

still

The

each of

find twists

ability to yield

of course, one of the hallmarks

art.

have

tried, in this

book, to uncover some of the mechanisms

and

that drive the Beatles' music,

to

show how

these intuitive but

unschooled musicians from Liverpool evolved into some of the most

and inventive musicians the world of popular music has pro-

original

duced.

have given an overview of each of the Beatles' albums and

and instead of a song-by-song

singles,

which the Beatles made

recordings in
It
I

'I

may seem

(She's

popular 'Here

Comes

'I

have focused on the


significant leaps.

John Lennon's

o>{

Abbey Road,

quirky, often overlooked,

So Heavy)' than to George Harrison's

Comes

the Sun', for

song, whereas

most

my discussion

odd, for example, that in

give greater attention to

Want You

survey,
their

My reason

the Sun'.

beauty,

all its

Want You

(She's

is

for

doing so

far

is

more

that 'Here

a relatively straightforward

So Heavy)'

is

full

of novel and

experimental touches.

Of course,

the Beatles did not create their music in a vacuum, so

although the music


step back

and take

the

is

main focus

here,

it

was

also necessary to

broader view of their development

the details of their public career and, particularly in the


their collaboration, the

were plaved out


I

it

this

were

it

Norman

not for the conspiratorial


Lebrecht, and could not have

without the advice and encouragement of many

extremely grateful to Mark Lewisohn,

scholarship and

who

who

Johanna,

And

proof-read with

of arcane information
solo in the

mono

provided a great deal of information and helpful

for the last six years.

who

Friends.

revolutionized Beatles

criticism in an exchange of ideas thai has kept our

ming

of

which their changing private concerns

in

of Ginny Macbeth and

written

performers,

final years

in their musical lives.

would not have written

efforts

am

ways

as

('listen

a poet's

!.i\

machines hum-

cannot sufficiently thank

there's

my

wife

eye m^\ listened to a great deal

m\ extra

WOO

before the guitar

mix') with extraordinary patience and support.

The Beatles

for

am

indebted to the generosity of Eddie Fennell and Eddie Suarez

many

Marvin

particularly interesting, unusual

Siegel, for agreeing that the

Desk within

its

classical

New

and

music department during

paper's culture editor, thereby

making

of Beatlefan magazine for keeping

open forum;

his years as the

legitimate for

it

Beading during business hours;

in occasional

useful materials; to

York Times needed a Beatles

me up

to Bill

to date

me

and

to indulge

Leslie

King

and providing an

to Beatles-obsessed friends at various cyber-outposts

the Internet, particularly Martin C. Babicz, Joseph C.

Self,

D.

on

L.

MacLaughlan, Doug Sulpy, Steve Shorten, Steve Marinucci, Kevin

O'Hare and Mike

Tim

Edsall;

to

James R. Oestreich, Gene Santoro,

Page and Peter G. Davis, decidedly non-Beatles-obsessed friends

and colleagues who

listened indulgently

Last but certainly not


father,

ideas

and

Richard Kozinn,

least,

who

owe an

taught

me

and offered wise counsel.


incalculable debt to

my

a great deal about organizing

and turning unruly sheaves of information into reasoned

course. This

book

Allan Kozinn

New York,

1995

is

dedicated to his memory.

dis-

Introduction

Consider these two images of the

moments

The

first

them on

Beatles, captured

on film

key

at

in their career:

the earliest performance footage of the group

stage at the Cavern, a

on 22 August

They

1962.

crowded basement club

- shows

in Liverpool,

most primal: nearly

are not quite at their

a year earlier, their manager, Brian Epstein,

had persuaded them

abandon

and

down

leather outfits in favour of jackets

their raucous stage act.

And

they produce a tight, unified sound.

Me

They
called

now

The music could

lyrics are basic:

than

in less

song called

someone

hardly be simpler:

my

else's

music, a song

recently been a hit for Ritchie

its

beat

its
is

chord progression

is

steady and danceable,

girlfriend ran off with

someone

else,

and

I'm sad and lonely.

Leap forward

had

nightclubs,

recently joined the

Do'.

are seen here, however, playing

a slightly embellished blues pattern,


its

to

to tone

their first record, an original

'Some Other Guy', which had

Barrett.

and

Hamburg

They had

of Parlophone Records, a subsidiary of EMI, and

two weeks they would make


'Love

and

having clocked countless hours

playing local dances and eight-hour shifts in

roster

ties,

to 25

June 1967. Twenty-four days

earlier,

the Beatles

released Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Bandy a remarkably

colourful album, with songs that ran the


treatises

on inner

spirituality. Its

gamut from pure

fantasy to

instrumental rextures embraced not

only the electric guitars, bass and drums they are seen playing

'Some Other Guy'

clip,

but Indian instruments, keyboards

kinds, electronic tape loops

Pepper topping

producers of

and

the charts, they

Our

chamber

were

orchestra.

fulfilling a

Invited to supply

broadcast, they produced

'All

.1

You Need

such a multinational occasion, and

tor the

quickly entered pop culture mythology

.is

to the

would reach

tli.n

brand new song


Is

the

Now, with

commitment

World, a global satellite broadcast

400 million people.

in

ol various

tor the

Love' - the perfect song for

summer
the

ot 1967,

Summer

which

ot Love.

10

The Beatles

In the clip, the Beatles are

headphones and dressed

shown perched on high

Balloons, posters, streamers

and

of the day.

crowd of celebrity onlookers

A thirteen-piece ensemble -

complete an almost carnival atmosphere.


strings,

wearing

stools,

in the flowery, rich-textured style

winds, brass and accordion

- accompanies

the foursome.

And

the heart of the instrumentation was not the energetic guitar playing

of the Cavern performance, but a delicate harpsichord.

By

this

point the Beatles were playing only their

composed mostly by John Lennon,

Need

Is

lead guitarist,
steadily,

Starr,

the

music, songs

All

You

The

been contributing songs

also

drummer, would soon be writing

too.

begins with a cosmopolitan touch, a brass setting of the

opening bars of 'La

And

Marseillaise'.

A seemingly simple,

then something odd happens.

sweetly harmonized vocal section creates the

of a smooth natural flow, but actually moves back and forth

between three and four beats to the


through the
tures of

own

guitarist

Paul McCartney, the bassist.

George Harrison, had

and Ringo

The song

illusion

- and

Love' was one of his

rhythm

the

of the song,

rest

pop song

structure,

as if

bar.

These metre

shifts

continue

Lennon, unhindered by the

had decided

to

make

stric-

the music follow

the contours of his lyrics instead of bending the words to suit the

musical form.

The

lyrics reinforce this notion. 'There's

that can't be done,'

Lennon calmly

can sing that can't be sung.'

And

intones, adding, 'nothing

as the

string of musical quotations drift past

Brandenburg Concerto No.

2,

song 'Greensleeves', a touch of the

and

a bit

watching the Beatles

at the

song winds
a

hit,

of the old English

jazz standard 'In the

The

Cavern

in

August 1962 could have envis-

Beatles'

under

Yet music

The
ture,

let

alone

it.

metamorphosis from the tough, provincial rock band

of the 1962 clip to the sophisticated musicians shown on


just

Mood',

'She Loves You'. Surely no one

aged the Beatles playing so complex and colourful a song,

composing

you

to a close, a

trumpet figure from Bach's

a string version

lute

of an early Beatles

nothing you can do

five years
is

is

only one element of the

story.

Beatles' career paralleled the rise

which came

the Beatles were

Our World'in

an astonishing story of musical development.

of the post-war youth cul-

to be a potent force in the

making

world economy

their earliest records.

The

just as

Beatles quickly

Introduction

dominated

this

emerging culture,

first as

conventional teen

idols, as

Frank Sinatra and Elvis Presley had been before them, but eventually

and even

as political

quasi-religious figureheads.

Along with

their

generation, they adopted flamboyant fashions and political positions

and they celebrated

that challenged the established norms,

hedonism most

kind of

directly expressed in a pervasive experimentation

with drugs, either in pursuit of spiritual revelation or merely for the


thrill

of it.

Yet the Beatles themselves were the

first

admit that although

to

they seemed to be the leaders of this

new youth

no means

had an unfailing

its

architects. Rather, they

and when those trends matched

trends early,

culture, they

their

were by

ability to detect

own

impulses, they

adopted and amplified them, making them instantly chic for the
millions of fans

There

is

who

looked to the Beatles for guidance.

a paradoxical aspect to their ability to tap the Zeitgeist so

successfully as to always

listeners'

expectations that

their records
still.

and

it

hit parade. Yet they never

between 1963, when they were

and 1968, when they began

records explored

of pop

one

filled their

could almost be taken for granted that

would dominate the

Particularly in the years


eager,

On

seem a step ahead of their audience.

hand, they were able to produce music that so thoroughly

new ground and

stood
fresh

one of their

to fragment, every

either tested or redrew the limits

sensibility.

But experimentation
because they are good.

aside, the group's

The

times deliberately cryptic)

lyrics are

songs are so durable

unusually articulate

and Lennon, McCartney and

(if

some-

later

Harrison proved to be not only inventive, original melodists, but


skilled

manipulators of song structures. In any case, the music has

survived the rebellious Anglo-American 1960s' youth culture that

spawned

it,

and has flourished outside

its

original context.

In fact, the music's adoption outside the youth culture was fairly

immediate. Leonard Bernstein, the composer of West Side Story and


then the music director of the

New

York Philharmonic, became

champion of the Beatles' music as early as 1964, and sometimes used


Beatles songs to illustrate his televised 'Young Peoples

admiration for their music never faded.


other rock groups)

when he

He

delivered the

Lectures at Harvard University in 1973.

referred to

harks

And

in

.111

Eliot

Joncerts'.

lis

them (and
Norton

interview shortly

12

The Beatles

before his death in 1990, he restated his opinion that the Beatles were
the Schuberts of our time.

Other

'serious'

composers, performers and

Beatles with equal zeal.


in

The

The Times of London

at the

championed the

critics

William Mann,

critic

in a

famous review

end of 1963, stunned the

music world - and the Beatles themselves - when he

classical

called

Lennon

and McCartney the outstanding composers of 1963, and compared


a

chord sequence in their 'Not a Second Time' to the conclusion of

Mahler's Das Lied von der Erde.


In 1966, the Italian avant-garde

composer Luciano Berio arranged

an album's worth of Beatles tunes to be sung by Cathy Berberian, his

The

wife and an expert performer of contemporary concert music.

same

now

year,

Joshua Rifkin, then a fledgling record company arranger,

renowned Baroque music scholar and conductor, recorded

The Baroque Beatles Book, an amusing LP on which Beatles melodies

became the themes of trio

sonatas, cantatas, orchestral suites

and

the like.
Sgt.

Pepper convinced other doubters that the Beatles' music was

not merely pop ephemera. By the end of 1967, Aaron Copland,

garded

as the

songs to be music of quality,

Hans

Keller

in

lukewarm

which he

as

had the musicologists Wilfrid

and Deryck Cooke.

composer known
critic's

re-

dean of American composers, had pronounced Beatles

And Ned Rorem,

for his graceful art songs,

Mellers,

an American

responded to

a rock

appraisal ot Sgt. Pepper with a lengthy appreciation

cast the Beatles virtually as the saviours

of music from

post-1950 academic modernism.

fascination with the Beatles can

classical

Brouwer

still

be detected in parts of the

music world. By the 1970s composers


in

Cuba, Toru Takemitsu

in Japan,

as diverse as

Leo

and Peter Maxwell

Davies in Great Britain, had published arrangements of Beatles songs.


In the late 1980s, Aki Takahashi, a Japanese pianist
in

new

who

specializes

music, commissioned dozens of composers from around the

world to

set Beatles tunes.

Among

the results were a fantasy on

Lennon's 'Give Peace a Chance' by Frederic Rzewski; The Beatles


1962-ipyo by John Cage; Nothing

Is

Real (Strawberry Fields Forever)

by Alvin Lucier; and The Walrus In Memoriam


Terry Riley.

(I

Am the

Walrus) by

13

Introduction

There

is

also,

of course, the appeal the

often cited American performers

Motown

for the Detroit-based

By

Beatles'

music had

pop realms outside mainstream hit-parade

various

rock.

who

particularly those

record label

as

in

The

Beatles

recorded

primary influences.

Motown artists whose music


own takes on Lennon

the mid-1960s, quite a few of the

the Beatles used to play were recording their

and McCartney songs. Ray Charles,

Elvis Presley,

Ella Fitzgerald recorded Beatles songs as well.

Frank Sinatra and

The most

those songs, of course, was McCartney's 'Yesterday'.

performers of all stripes have recorded

successful of

More than 2,000

and Broadcast Music

it,

Incorporated, the American performing rights organization, has

mated

that

was played on the radio more than

it

between 1965 and the

early 1990s.

But

five

virtually every

esti-

million times

song the Beatles

wrote has been covered (or reinterpreted) by someone

- even

Lennon's quirky, unreproducible electronic music piece, 'Revolution


9'.

And

the music has been reconfigured by performers of all kinds,

from pops orchestras

to jazz bands,

from country and western singers

to 1950s' retro-rockers.

Yet for

all

the interpretive ingenuity that has been applied to the

Beatles' music, there

group's
is

own

is

also a degree to

recordings are inseparable.

an unconventional view. But

it is

which the songs and the

From

pop

perspective, this

a crucial point, for particularly

after 1964,

they used the recording studio not simply as a place to

document

their compositions, but as the

songs took form. In


sit at

his

much

the

same way

workshop
a classical

desk with a piano sketch and turn

Beatles experimented in the studio, trying


altering

were

them

satisfied.

electronically

it

in

which the

composer might

into a

symphony, the

and discarding sounds,

and tinkering with balances

Their recordings

are, in effect, electronic

until they

music, as

carefully crafted as, say, Karlheinz Stockhausen's electronic works.

And

in that sense, the Beatles' recordings

of these songs, rather

in printed sheet music, arc the definitive

than their representation


original versions.

related

and equally unusual

sometimes cloudy

McCartney agreed
like

issue

early

aspect of the groups

work

is

the

of compositional credit. Lennon and

on

that they

Rodgers and Hammerstein;

stan dard configuration in

jrei

would be considered

.1

team,

they never adhered to the

which one collaborator wrote the words

14

The Beatles

and the other wrote the music.


contributed

lyrics

and musical

When

they composed together, both

Sometimes one would bring an

ideas.

incomplete song to the studio and the other would put on the finishing touches. But

more

composed

often than not, they

There were other kinds of collaborations

too.

One

separately.

cannot over-

look the contributions and influence of George Martin, the producer

who

oversaw their sessions from the

whose judgement they

outsiders

often decisive.
Please Me',

it

When Lennon

was

Martin told them


it

back

and McCartney

it

was dreary and needed


let

record, as indeed

was Martin,

It

too,

who

it

Once McCartney

to his

own

devices.

'Strawberry Fields Forever', in


several

them

all,

was

daunting

at the

end

their first

hand

initial resist-

in the

arrangement:

cello line,

which moves

in

was McCartney's. At other times,

During the

November

sessions for Lennon's

1966, the group recorded

task,

were in different keys and tempos,

but Martin found a way, and deserves a

credit for

what turned out

to be

one of the

Beatles'

brilliant recordings.

During

their years together, the Beatles released roughly ten

hours of music, with scarcely a loser in the


of rock music, and forged a high

artistic

composers (Pete Townshend of the

Mark Knopfler of Dire


cite

would be

he asked Martin to make a composite of two very different

good share of the


most

they brought

and

arrangements and although Lennon was displeased with

versions. Because the performances


this

it,

McCartney's

agreed, he took a

lovely counterpoint to the melody,


left

When

was.

Martin has pointed out that the distinctive

Martin was

'Please

by Roy Orbison.

a jolt.

it

were

him

persuaded McCartney to record

'Yesterday' with a string quartet, against

ance.

played

them record

of the session, he proclaimed his belief that

number one

first

in a slow version, influenced

an upbeat rocker, Martin

as

and who was one of the few

start,

trusted. Martin's suggestions

only a few) could

Straits,

set

lot.

They

raised the stature

path from which other rock

Who, Ray

Davies of the Kinks,

David Bowie and

Elvis Costello, to

out in different directions.

Yet not one of the Beatles studied music formally, and none of

them could read musical notation. They achieved what they did
entirely

by

instinct,

and on the effervescence generated

in a perfectly

balanced, freakishly rare form of musical and personal chemistry.

And

the world has seen nothing like

them

since.

-I

o
3

c
Q

O
3

09

Q
(a

O
Cn
nj

O
i

There was nothing big in Liverpool.


poor, a very poor

city,

It

was very

and tough. But people

have a sense ofhumour because they are in

much pain
the sailors
With fans looking on, the

...It

is

would come home with

records from

America on

so

and it's where

cosmopolitan,

the blues

ships.

Beatles pose for an early


publicity

photo at the

docks

their native city

in

John Lennon, 1970

{Rolling Stone)

of Liverpool

Li

16

The Beatles

From Quarry Men


Liverpool

group,

may

but

lessness,

never escape

as a place that

reputation for post-industrial hope-

its

might spawn a peculiarly English musical

had everything going

it

Like any port

was

city, it

to Beatles 1957-61

for

a place

it

in the years after

World War

where diverse musical influences

converged. Sounds from distant places would arrive there


at the time, the

soul,

also

most

interesting sounds were

rhythm and blues and country

had

cities at

records, in particular.

The

and London was

and Jewish communities,


that

New York was

not.

These influences, both individually and

in their mixture, can be

heard tellingly in the Beatles' early work. Listen closely to 'Love

to be bluesy,

band embellish

roll,

schoolboy,

like
c.

an angelic

1945.

But would an authentic blues

and

context have an almost medieval sound?

this

group, John Winston Lennon, was born durraid

on

October 1940,

to Julia Stanley

and

and

John Lennon looked

deceptively

to a degree.

plaint with vocal harmonies in thirds, fifths

its

German bombing

ing a

it is

harmonies that in

The founder of the

his

parents' breakup, but not

yet smitten by rock

and

Me

The song was

Do', for example, and a peculiar hybrid comes into focus.

Traumatized by

city

the time. There was a large Irish population, as well as size-

making Liverpool the kind of cultural melting-pot

octaves,

and

first,

coming from America

more colourful ethnic make-up than many other English

able Jamaican, Indian, Chinese, Slavic

meant

II.

Alfred Lennon.

They had married

merchant

in 1938, but Alfred, a

seaman, was absent for long stretches during Lennon's early years.
Julia

was described

in the spring

stable

home

as a free if

somewhat

was decided

flighty spirit. It

of 1941 that John would have the greatest chance of a


life if

he were brought up by Julia's childless

Elizabeth,

known

Woolton,

a Liverpool suburb.

as

Thus Lennon was


marriage in 1942.

sister

Mimi, and her husband George Smith,

Mary

in

insulated from the breakup of his parents'

He saw his

father occasionally until he

whereupon Alfred disappeared

until 1965,

when

was

five,

London newspaper

reported that while his son was making millions, Alfred

Lennon was

They maintained an odd, rocky

relationship

a dishwasher in a hotel.

From Quarry

Men

to Beatles

1957-61

17

thereafter. Julia,

on the other hand, took up the

who

tionate, eccentric aunt,

countered the

One
From

of the

affec-

upbringing

strict

was giving John by indulging and encouraging

bohemian

role

Mimi

his earliest

instincts including his interest in music.

emerged

trait

penchant for twisting the language.

early: a

the time he was a

somewhat mischievous seven-year-old

Dovedale Primary School through

at

Quarry Bank High

his years at

School and the Liverpool College of Art, he entertained his friends

by writing booklets of parodies and nonsense


cartoons and caricatures. This talent

song

his

years, In

and

lyrics,

His

in the

came

verse, illustrated

with

to full flower not only in

but in the two books he published during the Beatles

Own

Write in 1964 and^l Spaniard in the Works in 1965,

posthumous compilation, Skywriting by Word ofMouth,

published in 1986.
In 1955 and 1956, rock and

rhythm and
found
Bill

its

blues,

way

was

roll,

revitalizing

pop form based on

a high-energy

American popular music and had

to Britain via the film Blackboard Jungle,

which featured

Haley and the Comets singing 'Rock Around the Clock'.

Presley records soon followed,

and Presley quickly gained

Elvis

hold on

Lennon's imagination.
Presley

was

western accent

essentially a blues singer

or was

it

the other

with a heavy country and

way around? He drew

his reper-

tory from both sides of the track, but his vocal style struck listeners of

the time as a black sound.


hip-swivelling
ties

that

made

drew

He was

ecstatic

also a very physical performer: his

screams from his female fans.

Elvis so appealing to people

their parents as cause for grave concern. Just

to be turning out right, wearing crew cuts


ballads, here

was

The

quali-

of Lennon's age struck

when

their kids

and dancing

Southern truck driver with

jet

seemed

to saccharine

black hair stacked

elaborately but with a touch of waywardness, gyrating behind a guitar

and growling 'you

ain'

not'n but a

In truth, parental concern

was, after

all,

hound

a decidedly anti-authoritarian undercurrent in early

rock, an attitude that teenagers seized

was only the

wont

dog'.

was not wholly unwarranted. There

tip

upon immediately. And

of the iceberg. Jerry Lee Lewis, a wildman

to play the piano with his feet,

Tennessee milieu

as Presley

came from

and offered

the

Presley

who was

same Memphis,

a similar musical

admixture.

Carl Perkins's brand of rock leaned closer to country, and sounded

18

The Beatles

civilized

Over

by contrast, yet

in Texas,

somewhat more

was funky enough

And

refined style.

who came

performers

it

Buddy Holly took

all

make

to

appeal.

its

those elements and

moulded

to reclaim rock

and

from Presley and

roll

company, the most notable being the spectacularly uninhibited


Richard and

master from St Louis,

a sly guitar

All these musicians

made

then there was the wave of black

Chuck

Little

Berry.

profound impression on Lennon and

the other Beatles-to-be. Several of their songs remained in the


group's performing repertory; in fact, their final public concert, at

Candlestick Park in San Francisco, on 29 August 1966, began with


Berry's

'Rock and Roll Music' and ended with

More

Tall Sally'.

created a

'Long

Little Richard's

immediately, though, the tide of American rockers

boom market

England.

for guitars in Liverpool,

customer was John Lennon.

Julia,

who

One

eager

played the banjo, taught him

his first chords.

In a middle-class

home

in Allerton,

Woolton, Paul McCartney was


James Paul McCartney on

18

not

from Lennon's home

far

by

also fascinated

in

Born

Elvis Presley.

June 1942, he was the most musically

inquisitive of the Beatles, probably because a rather

more advanced

musical culture flourished in his home. Lennon's parents were amateurs: Julia

could sing to her

own banjo accompaniment, and

Alfred

fancied himsejf a singer too. But McCartney's father, a self-taught

own Jim Mac Jazz Band

pianist, actually led his

in the 1920s. In 1941

he married Mary Mohin, a nurse and midwife. The McCartneys had


a piano in their house, although Paul

few

lessons.

He

also

seems to have ignored

took up the trumpet

to pick out a few tunes.

But what

briefly,

really excited

it

after a

and taught himself

him was

the music

he was hearing on Radio Luxembourg, which played some of the

American pop records

that were

making

their

way

across the Atlantic.

Imported rock was not the only music to engage young Lennon

and McCartney. In January

1956, just a few

months before

'Heartbreak Hotel' began to electrify the airwaves, a

broke out

all

import, an old tune


Ledbetter, better

and

its

skiffle craze

over England, instigated by Lonnie Donegan's hit

recording of 'Rock Island Line'.

blues,

Elvis's

The song was another American

made famous by

known

attraction

as

Lead

the blues singer

Belly. Skiffle

Huddie

was based on country

was that anybody could join

or sometimes the banjo, was the central instrument

in.

The

guitar,

in a skiffle

band,

From Quarry

Men

to Beatles

Liverpool, the northern port


city

from which, London

1957-61

19

which might
scrape

also include a percussionist

away on

washboard, and a

who

bassist

used a thimble to

who

played an instrument

music world executives


insisted, nothing

would come

great

made from

a tea-chest, a single string

and

a broomstick.

Like Lennon, McCartney clamoured for a guitar.

When

he got

one, there was a problem: being left-handed, he had trouble coaxing


his fingers to

make

the chord shapes he was trying to learn. His solu-

tion was to restring the guitar backwards, so that he could play

it

upside down. Thereafter, he spent night and day alternately picking


at the

instrument and perfecting an imitation of

screaming vocal

Little Richard's

style.

Once he heard

Elvis,

Lennon disdained crooning and

But McCartney was not so

immune

to

it.

He

later cited

Christmas' and 'Over the Rainbow' as early favourites.

middle ground between

light

pop and

Elvis,

worked-out harmonies would

And from

the

he was particularly fond

of the Everly Brothers, an American duo whose


serve as a

soft pop.

'White

model

close, beautifully

for the early Beatles.

20

The Beaties

But apart from an attempt to form a duo with

development was

in 1957, his musical

contrast,
1957,

saw music

soon

formed

his

after

own

as a social

he got his
skiffle

Blackjacks; thereafter
The Quarry
Lennon

Men

at the

John

parties

Garry (washtub

and contests

guitarist

bassist) -

Church,

just

in

March

in

known

as the

honour of the Quarry

where Lennon was an increasingly

a fairly fluid line-up

in the spring

and performed

of 1957 with Lennon

at

as its lead

Shotton

(washboardist) and Len

Woolton,

was Quarry Men,

for Boys,

and

he gathered some friends and

band. For a week, the band was


it

The Quarry Men had

Rod Davis

at St Peter's

Lennon, by

start,

indifferent student.

(behind Lennon, also a


guitarist), Pete

avocation from the

first guitar,

younger brother

microphone,

flanked by Eric Griffiths


(guitar),

Bank High School

his

fairly solitary.

It

was

hours before

Lennon was introduced


Paul McCartney.

life.
to

and

singer. Correctly

his fronting a

entirely

On

assuming that Mimi would object

band, Lennon and his friends rehearsed

by accident that Mimi discovered her nephew's

6 July 1957 she attended the

summer

to

at Julia's house.

secret

fete at St Peter's Parish

Church, and was horrified to discover that what she

later

described as

From Quarry

Men

to Beatles

1957-61

21

an eruption of noise' was produced by Lennon and the Quarry Men.

A recording of Lennon singing two


'Baby, Let's Play House',

and

on the

'Puttin'

which he knew from an

Style', a

private collection in 1994.


in action

Quarry
It is

on

that date.

Men

songs that day

Lonnie Donegan

There

And

Gunter's

Elvis Presley record,

- turned up

in a

photographs of the band

are also

a local

hit

- Arthur

newspaper referred

briefly to the

performance.

extraordinary that a performance by a band of teenagers in

Liverpool suburb in the late 1950s should have been so well docu-

mented - and

more

the

all

so because the date turned out to be a

milestone in the Beatles' history.

Quarry

Men

sets,

that

Vaughan, one of several tea-chest

mate of McCartney's

knew McCartney

to

McCartney was

It

was

at this

church

fete,

was a

bassists in the group,

at the Liverpool Institute

Grammar

make up

the verses he

McCartney knew
tar,

a skill

more

didn't

know.

a thing or two. For

none of the Quarry

crucially,

out the

class-

School, and

be a better guitarist than anyone in the band.

intrigued by Lennon,

who

played the guitar using

banjo chords, and whose haphazard knowledge of song


to

between

John Lennon met Paul McCartney. Ivan

he proved

his

Men

And Lennon

lyrics led

him

could see that

one thing, he could tune

a gui-

had mastered; and perhaps even

knowledge of rock and

roll

by writing

Eddie Cochran's 'Twenty Flight Rock' and Gene

lyrics to

Vincent's 'Be-Bop-a-Lula', and by singing 'Long Tall Sally' in his best


Little

Richard voice.

join the group.

A week passed before McCartney was invited to

Lennon had no doubt

McCartney would be an
Lennon's band:
perceived as

its

it

was

leader.

asset.

his gang,

that in purely musical matters,

But the Quarry

and

it

Having someone

He

decided to put the

first.

McCartney made
18

was not only

better than himself in the

group might mean sharing the spotlight.

band

Men

was important that he be

October

1957,

his first

appearance with the Quarry

and apparently had designs on the

Men on

lead guitar spot,

an ambition he dropped after botching his solo moment.

He

was,

on the other hand, not shy about pointing out musical weaknesses
elsewhere in the band. Virtually from the
source of tension that the group had not
trolling voice

start, his criticisms

known when

were a

the sole con-

was Lennon's. This was an important difference

between Lennon and McCartney, one that would remain

in

high

22

The Beatles

through the Beatles

relief

Lennon knew what he wanted, and

years.

he was usually able to persuade

his

bandmates

to at least

approximate

the sound he had in mind. But he was also something of a bohemian,

and when perfection seemed out of reach, he

McCartney was

settled for the attempt.

and was loath

a perfectionist,

abandon

to

ideas that

he knew could be achieved. That his collaborators might consider


his

demands unreasonable did not

faze

him: the

was

result

all

that mattered.

By

early 1958 the

Quarry Men's personnel had

stabilized,

Lennon, McCartney and Eric

Griffiths

on drums, Len Garry on

and John 'Duff Lowe

As the

pianist.

skiffle

bass,

boom

on

bandmates did not

Garry

all

share.

Little Richard, a taste

Within months,

and McCartney brought

left,

as occasional

Lennon and McCartney were

faded,

pushing the band's repertory toward Elvis and


their

with

Colin Hanton

guitars,

and

Griffiths

he knew from the

in a guitarist

Liverpool Institute, George Harrison. Harrison was a year younger

than McCartney but was obsessed with the guitar and was making

quick headway.

When

he turned up

at a

performance on 6 February

few weeks short of his fifteenth birthday, he struck Lennon

1958, a

a child,

and

a sullen

one

band the same way McCartney


things that

But Harrison found

at that.

Lennon could

not.

did:

his

way

as

into the

by showing that he could play

With McCartney's encouragement, he

tagged along with the band to a few engagements, and by mid-year,

he was a member.
Harrison was born on 25 February 1943, the youngest of the four
children of Harold Harrison and Louise French,
1930. His father drove the bus that

McCartney

who

to the Liverpool Institute. Harrison

was generally disen-

chanted by school, but until he took up the guitar


for rebellion

was dressing

in the

at least irritating.

approached the guitar

as

his

main

flamboyant Teddy Boy

trousers, elaborate coats, long greased-back hair

menacing, or

married in

brought both Harrison and Paul

outlet

style

that parents

tight

found

Unlike Lennon and McCartney,

something

to

accompany

Harrison was drawn to the solos on early rock records.

He

some band experience before

his older

brother, Peter,

had

band

the

Quarry Men: he and

called the Rebels.

He

who

their singing,

also

made

did have

it

a prac-

tice to

bring his guitar to dances in the hope that one of the bands

would

let

him

sit

in or

even join. Even after he joined the Quarry

From Quarry

Men

to Beatles

23

1957-61

Men - whose

performing dates were few - he continued playing with

other groups.

The Quarry Men's performing


1958,

McCartney began composing


times in competition.
ing

fortunes were at low ebb by mid-

but there were compensations. In

Lennon

McCartney

his first song,

'I

late 1957,

Lennon and

songs, sometimes together

Lost

and some-

initiated the collaboration

My Little Girl',

by play-

a simple, three

chord number with a melody that would not have been out of place

on an Everly Brothers album. Lennon, though impressed

McCartney had written

a song,

was not

uncritical.

that

When McCartney

revived the song for a television performance in 1991, he said that

Lennon used
lines:

to rib

him about some of the

lyrics, particularly

'Her clothes were not expensive, Her hair didn't always

Sillier lyrics

the
curl'.

were doing perfectly well on the pop charts, but Lennon's

verbal sensitivity

was one of the most important things he brought

to

the collaboration. His other response was to write a song of his own,
Obsessed

with the guitar

from the age of thirteen,

George Harrison
until his

of the

fingers bled.

first

capture

practised
In

photographs

one
to

this fascination,

he

navigates the fretboard of


his first guitar,

hand

a second-

steel-string acoustic

model, purchased for 3.

>

The Beatles

Hello Little Girl

Although the Beatles dropped

became famous, two

which they sing

rehearsal tape, in

it

well before they

it

- one on

early performances survive

with Everly Brothers style tandem

harmonies; the other a harder-edged version, performed during a 1962


audition for Decca Records.
.riously, in light

of McCartney's

later reputation as the

more

musically astute composer, Lennons song shows greater sophistica-

The

tion.

meloci

Little Girl'

ascending motif based on the


'Hello Little Girl'

is

far prettier

But Lennon used a different

pop song
unable to

recall

his

the

first

simple as can be: an

as

and considerably more complicated.

sort

mother used
title.

is

four steps of the major scale.

of model - a half-remembered
to sing

him, though

Using older songs

later

Lennons modes of composing. Other examples come


Please Please Me', in

its

easily to

was patterned

early slow incarnation,

)n\y the Lonely'. 1 he opening lines of


to

Know

Life'

is

lifted

from Baby,

Men
that

song

in

mind:
after

Do You Want

Walt Disney's Snow

and the opening

the Seven Dwarfs',

the 19'

Not

from

a Secret' are taken

White and

he was

was one of

as templates

line

of

Run

Your

for

Play House', one of the songs heard on

Let's

tape.

Lennon worked

this

way

all

the time.

songs are entirely without precedent or model.

Many

Still,

of his best

using an earlier

piece of music as either a source of ideas or as the foundation for a

new work
centuries,

is

time-honoured

church composers

practice. In the fifteenth

like

and sixteenth

Guillaume Dufay and Josquin

Dcspres routinely based their Masses on popular melodies, tunes


that

any

listener

of the time would have known. But these composers

did not have copyright lawyers looking over their shoulders. Lennon

knew

that

if

to disguise

he were going to use existing works

them, but occasionally he

he patterned

'Come

Together' after

let

as

models, he had

a clue slip through. In 1969

Chuck

Berry's 'You Can't

nnons song was original enough that the melodic

would not have been apparent had he not retained


lyric. Berry's

Catch

similarities

a line of

Ben

publisher sued, and in 1975, as part of the settlement,

Lennon recorded Tou Can't Catch Me'

for his

Rock

'ri

Roll

oldies collection.

Larly in their collaboration,

work

as a

Lennon and McCartney agreed

team, like George and

Ira

to

Gershwin, Jerry Lieber and Mike

From Quarry

Men

to Beatles

25

1957-61

Stoller or

Gerry Goffin and Carole King.

individually (as

most were). By

- 'Love

songs, a few of which

I'm 64'

1959, they had

Me

there was a brief collaboration between


as well. In mid-1958,

The

filled a

or

notebook with

'When

Beatles records. Apparently,

McCartney and Harrison

Lennon, McCartney, Harrison, and John Lowe

One

side

Be the Day', with Lennon singing

lead.

home

recorded two songs in the

was Buddy Holly's

many were)

(as

Do', 'One After 909' and

way onto

eventually found their

would bear

All their songs

both names, whether they were written together

'That'll

studio of Percy Phillips.

other, 'In Spite of All the Danger',

was credited McCartney-

Harrison, although McCartney, recalling the collaboration in 1989,


said that the

song was

essentially his

and

that Harrison shared the

credit because he devised the guitar solo.

Just as Lennon's musical


life

was

found

falling apart.

As

life

was getting into

and

a teenager

a supportive ally in his mother, Julia.

was struck and

killed

by

a car.

Lennon: not having seen


his parental

dozen

abandonment was complete -

class

profound

years,

had

July 1958, she

he

effect

now

on

felt

that

theme he explored on

his

in 1970.

immediately, Lennon's sense of loss intensified his 'them against

He had

approach to the world.

us'

15

Ono Band Ahum

pained, intensely autobiographical Plastic

More

But on

Her death had

his father in a

gear, his personal

fledgling musician, he

clown;

Julia's

now

long been a loud-mouth and a

he adopted an aggressive front

death also gave Lennon and McCartney something

common: McCartney's mother had


October

as well.

1956.

Lennon's.

died of breast cancer on

else in
31

McCartney's response was notably different from

Whether out of practicality or shock, he wondered aloud

what the family would do without her income. He then took on an


extra share of family responsibilities.

And

he threw himself more

fully

into mastering the guitar.

By

late 1958,

and the group

work had

essentially

ances into early 1959.


pose,

up

for the the

Quarry Men,

Lennon and McCartney continued

and Harrison moved on

to steadier

They reconvened

August

Quartet.
the

virtually dried

disbanded except for occasional perform-

that

Casbah Coffee Club, but quit

work with

to

after a

work

as the

com-

house band

in

pay dispute. That October,

they renamed themselves Johnny and the Moondogs, and


the finals of a Carol Levis talent contest.

to

the Les Stewart

made

Lennon was by then

it

to

The Beaties

enrolled at the Liverpool College of Art, where he was supposed to

be studying lettering. But with Harrison and McCartney next door


at the

Liverpool Institute, the temptation to find an empty

classroom
to resist.

at the college

and spend the day jamming was impossible

Lennon did attend some

met Cynthia

Powell,

whom

classes:

it

was

at the college that

he would marry in 1962.

He

also

friendly with Stuart Fergusson Victor Sutcliffe, a Scottish-born art

student whose Abstract Expressionist paintings showed great

promise.
biennial
1959,

prize-winning

but

artist

a woefully amateurish
bassist, Stu Sutcliffe joined

the

band

at Lennon's

insistence

member

in

1960, was a

for less than

and died

in

a year

1962;

nevertheless, he influenced
the group's attitude
look,

name

and

and suggested
Beatles.

the

One

of Sutcliffe's paintings was included in the second

John Moores Exhibition

at the

Walker Art Gallery

he

became

late in

and when the exhibition ended, Moores bought the painting

From Quarry

Men

to Beatles

27

1957-61

for 65,

which Lennon persuaded

Sutcliffe to

spend on an

electric

bass guitar.
Sutcliffe's talents

instrument. But for

were not musical, and he never did master the

Lennon

him

to bring

of the band's professional ambitions he


social club,

and he wanted

showed

in

be in

his friends to

it,

notwithstanding. Sutcliffe was in the group for

he made a few notable contributions.

He

on the name of Buddy

with a pun on
halls all over

From May

'beat'.

as a

abilities

than a year, but

less

his original spelling

was

Holly's band, the Crickets,

to July, the

band played

in

dance

Liverpool under the names Silver Beats and Silver

Beetles before

Lennon

At the end of i960,

Hamburg,

musical

suggested, for example,

renaming the group the Beatles (although


Beatals), a play

that even in light

thought of it partly

still

definitively

adopted

Sutcliffe's idea.

after the Beatles played their first season in

Sutcliffe bailed

out of the band to remain in

Germany

with his fiancee, Astrid Kirchherr. But his influence in non-musical


areas continued.

by the

He

adopted the forward-brushed hairstyle favoured

Existentialist student

Hamburg. The

crowd with which Astrid mixed

Beatles, then

still

Elvis clones,

but soon embraced what came to be


Beatle haircut.

mark, the

He

also

known

were derisive

in

at first,

in the early 1960s as the

introduced another early Beatles visual trade-

collarless jacket,

while the band was

still

in leather.

Beyond

these superficial contributions, he seems to have brought out the

Lennon was hiding under

intellectual curiosity that


Sutcliffe

was more passionate about

music, and

Lennon wanted

The

the two exchanged after the

letters

to

and

art

band
if

left

Hamburg

are full

self-conscious, poetry, not

what one would expect of a musician with the cocky rock-

guitarist

persona that Lennon presented publicly.

A tape of the group


ly

tough veneer.
than about

understand what Sutcliffe saw in them.

of anquished philosophizing and serious,


quite

literature

from mid-1960

an informal rehearsal,

it

exists,

and although

it is

clear-

runs for over two hours and includes both

songs and extended jams, thereby giving an impression of the then

drummerless
time;

quartet's abilities. Sutcliffe

when he can be

is

inaudible

much

of the

heard, his basslines are of a simple one-note-to-

the-bar variety. In the long jams, there seem to be two distinct lead
guitarists,

one comparatively fluent and

bluesy, the other

awkward

28

The Beatles

The Beatles as they were


in

1960, posing before a

Hamburg
portrait

From

ruin in

a famous

by Astrid Kirchherr.

left to right:

Pete Best

m.

C2

mi

(drummer), the three-guitar

'

-*

*"^
-*

nucleus of Harrison, Lennon

and McCartney, and

.**.

Sutcliffe with his bass.

From Quarry

Men

to Beatles

1957-61

29

30

The Beatles

and fumbling, though intent on playing quick

The

scale-like runs.

One,

was Harrison; the other might have been McCartney.

obviously,

some engaging moments. Most

are

Lennon-McCartney numbers. Besides

striking are a handful of

'Hello Little Girl', there are

two versions of 'One After 909' that wonderfully illuminate the


band's skiffle roots. Shotten's washboard

one can almost hear the echo of it

accompaniment.
clearly here

album

One

is

in the

of course long gone, but

chunky, off-the-beat chordal

hears the locomotive chugging along far

than in the version the Beatles recorded for the Let

more
It

Be

Otherwise, the song did not change much. But Til

in 1969.

Follow the Sun' changed considerably between

and the version recorded

appearance here

its

for Beatles for Sale in late 1964.

The

finished

version begins with a graceful walk through the song's chord progression,

then right into the

Buddy
of the
is

lyrics.

The i960 account

Holly-ish lead guitar introduction.

first

two

with a twangy,
the lyrics

although the accompaniment

verses are already there,

blend of skiffle and vaudeville, a

starts

The melody and

from the supple support

far cry

of the 1964 recording. But the song's bridge section was entirely
revised

between the two recordings. In i960

it

was

a simple, brief

country and western pastiche with the Holly-style solo leading back
into the verse.

The 1964

bridge,

more spacious and with new

moves from the bright major key


sweet minor

The

mode

lyrics,

feeling of the verse into a bitter-

digression.

tape also gives an impression of the band's taste in cover

versions,

which

are split

Will Always Be in Love

between blues numbers

With

(Ray Charles's 'Hallelujah!

You'), brighter

Love Her

So'),

(Fats

Domino's

'I

rhythm and blues songs

country and western

tunes (Carl Perkins's 'Matchbox'), and sizzling rockers (Duane Eddy's

'Moovin'

'n'

Groovin"

in a version that replaces Eddy's slinkiness

with

direct aggression).

Soon

after Sutcliffe joined, the Beatles

took on a manager of sorts.

Allan Williams ran a club called the Jacaranda, and undertook various
freelance
Billy

Fury to Liverpool, with

not, at

were

promotions that brought rock

first,

less

local

stars like

bands

filling

Gene Vincent and

out the

bill.

He was

impressed with the Beatles: they had no drummer, and

accomplished than Cass and the Cassanovas, Rory Storm

and the Hurricanes and Gerry and the Pacemakers,


with plenty of experience.

Still,

all

local

bands

Williams enlisted the group to play

at

From Quarry

Men

to

Beatles

1957-61

his

31

New Cabaret Artistes,

insisted

hoped

an

illegal strip club,

on the accompaniment of a

to strip to the

backing a dancer

who

band. Actually, she had

live

music of Beethoven and Khachaturian, and

distributed scores to Lennon, McCartney, Harrison

But since they were unable

to read these, she

'Summertime', 'The Third

Man

had

and

Sutcliffe.

to settle for

Theme', 'Begin the Beguine' and

other standards. According to the account in Williams's autobiography, The

Man Who

Gave

the Beatles

Away, McCartney

rilled in

on drums.

They did need


found one

permanent drummer though, and Williams

them -

for

Moore accompanied
a

backup band

ments

him

Tommy Moore,

the Silver Beetles

for the singer

in Liverpool,

but

left

to devote his energies

Bottle Works.

when

a 36-year old fork-lift operator.

on

a short tour

Johnny Gentle, and

the

more

band when
fully to his

for a

of Scotland

his girlfriend

day job

persuaded

at the

Another drummer, Norman Chapman, was

they heard

him

as

few engage-

Garston
enlisted

practising in a building across the street

from Williams's Jacaranda; but soon

after

he joined the group, he

was conscripted.
In the

summer

of i960, Williams

made

a connection with

Bruno

Koschmider, the owner of several clubs on the Reeperbahn, the red


light district in

Hamburg. Koschmider was

in the

market for English

rock bands, and had contracted several Liverpool groups from


Williams. But the Beatles were not held in high regard by their peers,

and when Williams wrote

would

him

arrive in

to tell his other musicians that the Beatles

mid-August, he received a

that sending a group as

for everyone.

bad

Williams ignored the

mer. Their quest brought them back to


the proprietress's son,

own

Randolph

of protest, warning

would ruin the scene

but two weeks before their

letter,

planned departure date, the Beatles were

his

letter

as the Beatles

still

searching for a

Mona

Peter Best,

Best's

was playing drums

band, the Blackjacks. Best had his heart

set

was

easily

induced to throw

McCartney, Harrison and


In

Hamburg,

in his lot

in

on becoming

professional drummer, and with the other Blackjacks about


for college, he

drum-

Casbah, where

to leave

with Lennon,

SutclirTe.

the group's daily sets at the Indra and then at the

Kaiserkeller lasted late into the night,

and

to maintain the energy they

needed, they began to consume amphetamines prodigiously.

The

32

The Beatles

Pete Best,

who

joined the

Beatles on the eve of their


% :

first

*., ,

Hamburg

1960

trip in

and was unceremoniously


booted out on the eve of
their

ambience was

and

entirely decadent,

Koschmider gave the group

On

and

Existentialist literature,

sion, varied

from

became current

dress,

straight black to the almost

in

London seven

Klaus Voorman, maintained his


cover for their Revolver

album

years

at

in with a
art

depending on the occa-

costumed look

One

that

of the students,

with the group: he designed the

ties

in 1966,

of Lennon's early solo recordings.

later.

fell

contemporary

interested in

and whose

1962

behind the screen

the other hand, they

crowd of German students who were

in

were dismal:

living conditions

poorly-lit quarters

the Bambi, a decrepit cinema.

success

and was the

And Astrid

bassist

on

few

Kirchherr and Jurgen

Vollmer, photographers with a sense of the unusual, took what

became the

classic early

photographs of the group, pictures that

capture something of their ambition and defiance.


Sutcliffe in particular
Opposite, Lennon was

always nostalgic

Astrid, to

sophisticated world reminded

1975 he used

as the cover photo for

Rock
of

in

Roll,

and

especially to

destiny

him

that he

had put

on hold. And although he enjoyed playing

his

own

mediocre musicianship gave

was particularly

critical,

rise to

in the

artistic

increasing tensions.

but Lennon

band, his

McCartney

later told interviewers that

they

an album

songs by the musicians

who

to this crowd,

this

1961 Hamburg portrait

it

was drawn

he became engaged. His immersion in Astrid's

for the

tough Bohemian days

evokes;

whom

influenced him.

all

gave Sutcliffe a hard time, so that in the

resolved to remain in

Hamburg and was

autumn of i960 he

accepted for further studies

From Quarry

Men

to Beatles

33

1957-61

~~:

'

*>T

dif,

1"

p^

'.ft
-.

k\

<;

***

----*

HI

-^

*~
__

_^k*

34

TheB

with Eduardo Paolozzi, the Scottish-born sculptor and pioneer

pop

in

art.

For the

performed

rest

in

of the group, the three and a half months the Beatles

Hamburg were

decisive in their transition

from musical

hobbyists to full-time musicians. If hints of the Beatles style are evi-

dent on the mid-1960 tape, their sound was truly crystalized by some

500 hours of all-night performing. They had to keep current by

working up versions of the

latest hits,

both rockers and crooners,

songs they added to their backlist of personal favourites from

late

And with these examples in mind they were churning


out songs of their own with increasing confidence.
Just as life in Hamburg was taking shape, the band's luck changed.
1950s'

America.

In October,
In

Hamburg, 1961,

Beatles

the

abandoned

Elvis-clone hairstyles

their
in

favour of the brushed-

forward look popular


with Sutcliffe's art student
friends.

It

was another

six

months before they traded


in

their leather jackets for

stage

suits.

when Koschmider

discovered that the Beatles were

From Quarry

Men

to Beatles

1957-61

35

competing Top Ten

and sometimes

Collaborating with Tony

spending their breaks

Sheridan

performing there with the singer Tony Sheridan, he cancelled their

(right) at the

Top Ten Club

in

own

competing Kaiserkeller

contract. Harrison, then seventeen,

under

job at the

1960, but led

club,

Hamburg

got the Beatles fired from


their

at the

in

ered their belongings from the

to their first

Ten, they

was suddenly discovered

to be

and was deported. And when McCartney and Best gath-

age,

set a

condom

afire to

Bambi

in order to

provide

move

to the

Top

burn marks

light, leaving

professional recordings, as

Koschmider had them

Sheridan's backup band

on the

the following spring.

were deported.

wall.

Sutcliffe

remained

band, although he

Hamburg

stint in 1961.

December, ten days


in

in

Hamburg,

sat in

arrested for arson,

effectively resigning

returned to Liverpool in

McCartney and Harrison. He did not

touch with the others immediately:

rather,

no choice. Although he had

He

in music,

talents for

called the group together, with Chas

Best's Blackjacks)

On

reflection he

drawing and writing,

and the Beatles were too good

get

he spent a week won-

dering whether the band was worth continuing.

was

from the

with them occasionally during their

And Lennon

after

and they too

had

his heart

a resource to squander.

Newby

(the bassist

from

temporarily taking up SutclihVs role during his

36

The Beatles

college holiday,

and

their

performances

in the final days

of i960

re-

inforced his decision. Musically, the Beatles were far better than they

had been when they

left

Liverpool,

and the combination of beer,

amphetamines and the encouragement of boisterous German audiences had led

them

to develop a kinetic, electrifying stage show.

Suddenly, their Liverpool audiences were responding with signs of


the ecstatic frenzy that, three years

later,

would be

called Beatlemania.

<

o
o
Q

3
ft
a>

I
3T
<>
oi

had never seen anything like

any
ate
This advertisement for

April

1962 concert

an

at the

Cavern appeared well

spiffy

stage

old informal

appealed

suits,

image

hit each other.

They turned their backs on the audience and

but their
still

But

and laughed at private jokes.

they gave a captivating

and they had very


loved their

to their Liverpool

Some

would

and talked and pretended to

shouted at them

to
fans.

the Beatles on

They smoked as they played and they

after

Brian Epstein put the Beatles


in

stage.

me,

and honest show

considerable magnetism. I

ad libs and I was fascinated by

new music with

its

pounding

this,

bass beat

of those fans

months

protest four

later,

when drummer

Best,

on the

right,

was

replaced by Ringo

and its

vast engulfing sound.

Pete

Starr.

Brian Epstein, in

Cellarfull

of Noise, 1964

38

The Beatles

Liverpool Dance Halls 1961-2

It

would be

several years before

the Beatles' principal concern.

Germany

composition eclipsed performing

And

magnificent musical shape, there were

in

The chemistry would not be

store for the band.

as

although they returned from


still

changes in

entirely right until

August 1962.

The most
was what

to

pressing question facing

do about

a bassist,

now

them

beginning of 1961

at the

was out. Lennon

that Sutcliffe

tried to

persuade Harrison to take the job, but he declined, having

worked

so hard to perfect his rock

left

McCartney, whose decision

momentous than
effect

was

it

and country

to take

up the

could have seemed at the time.

to thin the group's texture

That

style solo spots.

bass proved

from three

Its

more

immediate

guitars to two, sharp-

ening the distinction between the chordal bed provided by Lennon's

rhythm

guitar

and Harrison's embellishments. More

significantly, the

switch to bass gave

McCartney an opportunity

to distinguish himself

instrumentally in a

way not

one of three

Bass lines

on

available to

him

depending on the

style

and context,

as

a bassist

at the root of the chord being played, or

guitarists.

were typically simple:

early 1960s' rock records

would pummel away

would

trace the notes

of the

chords in an unassuming blues pattern. McCartney did not eschew


these traditions entirely.

As

late as 1968, a

sped-up version of one

standard blues pattern became the spine of the song 'Birthday'.

when

song demanded simplicity, McCartney's

and unadorned. But the exceptions prove the


for

McCartney, the bass was

His bass

lines are active

lines

rule,

almost an alternate

And

were direct

which

is

that

form of lead

guitar.

and exploratory, and often have the same

sort of centrality within the Beatles' recordings as

Johann Sebastian

Bach's bass lines have in his contrapuntal keyboard,

chamber and

choral works. Especially in the period from Rubber Soul to Sgt. Pepper,
the bass lines are so intricate that they can stand alone as melodies.
Yet they are also propulsive, an essential part of the band's

rhythm

section.

Liverpool

Dance

Halls

1961-2

39

As a

sideline to his

work

as the Beatles' drummer,


Pete Best
of the

saw

to

some

management chores

not only arranging for

performing dates but

keeping a fastidious

scrapbook

of clippings

about the group.

This

early volume includes

advertisements for
several gigs as well

as a

Mersey Beat

article

about the group's 1961

Hamburg

recordings

with Tony Sheridan.

That McCartneys

ability

on the instrument developed quickly

evident from the recordings the Beatles


1961, as the

months
around

made

in

is

June

he took up the instrument, he was adding fancy turn-

between

figures

verses,

keeping performances moving and

to the bass at the

same time.

By the end of 1963, McCartney's


once one focused on

it,

inventiveness could be stunning

although part of its beauty was

inevitability within the musical texture. In 'All

McCartney song
is

Hamburg

backing band for the British singer Tony Sheridan. Six

after

drawing the ear

and

in

is

sense of
a

that figured prominently in the group's stage sets

included on the With the Beatles album, the

strikes the ear

its

My Loving',

the sweetly floating melody.

The

first

next

thing that
is

the texture,

specifically the rapid electric guitar chording, in triplets, played

Lennon. Pressed

to cite a third element, a listener

by

might focus on

Harrison's mildly jazz guitar solo. But the bass line, heard almost
subliminally,
plicity:

is

absolutely crucial. In a way,

it is

the picture of sim-

with an unvaried rhythm, McCartney puts a single note under

every beat.

and then

He

begins his bass line on the root of the opening chord,

steadily walks his

way down

the scale, ending each phrase

with a graceful punctuating figure that hops back to the top of the

40

The Beatles

Dance

Liverpool

Left,

Beatles

the scruffy

come up

between

on Matthew

nearly

300

41

makes

progression. Harmonically, the line

young

in

a great effect, particularly

combination with the song's other textural elements.

for fresh air

sets at the

cellar club

1961-2

back from

freshly

Hamburg,

Halls

Later his lines were

Cavern

Street, the

dank

where they gave


lunchtime and

lavish greater care

to

first

more

overtly sophisticated,

on them. By the time of Sgt.

recording a simple, provisional bass

and he began

line,

to

had taken

Pepper, he

and then,

song

as the

took shape, replacing the original version with something more

fully

evening performances

between February 1961

worked

and August 1963.

quick-and-dirty approach to recording pop music in the early 1960s,

out. This level of detail

although in

fairness, the

more

was a

traditional

Sheridan recordings and on the Beatles'

meant

approach - heard on the

own debut album - was

and spontaneity of a band's

to capture the energy

In 1961 the Beatles performed


social clubs in Liverpool

from the comparatively

far cry

most nights

in the

and environs. They had

also

sound.

live

dance

halls

and

found some-

thing of a headquarters: the Cavern Club, a crowded, unventilated,

poorly

lit

cellar that

their principal

had once been

haunt

until

August

a vegetable warehouse,

1963. In

its

remained

intimate confines, they

cultivated a loyal local audience.

A second visit to Hamburg kept the


27 March to 2

Beatles out of Liverpool

This time they played

July.

at the

Top Ten,

from

alternating

sets

with Tony Sheridan, and working until two or three in the morn-

ing.

They seem

ticularly

to have thrived

under these conditions, and they par-

enjoyed their reunion with Sheridan,

of view was already a


British television.

It

star,

who from

their point

having made recordings and performed on

was towards the end of this

visit that

they record-

ed a handful of ballads and rocked-up standards with Sheridan, two


of which - 'My Bonnie' and

were released

as a single a

At the Sheridan
their

more

'When

the Saints

few months

Go Marching

In'

later.

sessions, the Beatles also taped

two songs on

own: a version of 'Ain't She Sweet', with Lennon singing, and


notably, an original instrumental, 'Cry for a Shadow'.

only Beatles song credited

as a collaboration

The

between Lennon and

Harrison, 'Cry for a Shadow' parodied the twangy style of the

Shadows, the most popular


1960s,

British guitar-based

and the backing group

The

teenage heart-throb, modelled after

Elvis.

Shadows, but the song - which was

also, at

Bop' - does not show

it,

band of the

early

for Cliff Richard, a squeaky-clean

Beatles loathed the

one point,

except to the extent that

energy reveals the typical Shadows' instrumental

its

called 'Beatle

wildness and

as sterile

and

42

The Beatles

contrived. Lennon's guitar churns out the chords,


vides a characteristically active bass line, Best

and Harrison plays


notes of the verse

which the

a lead guitar line in

melody

McCartney

drums along
lazily

are contrasted against the

pro-

speedily,

bending

more

fiery twists

of the song's bridge. His playing shows more than a hint of

Duane

Eddy's influence, although he had not quite mastered Eddy's


cool proficiency.

Although the

Beatles' Liverpool

several instrumentals, 'Cry for a

and Hamburg repertory included

Shadow'

is

the only early one to sur-

was captured on

vive in a professional recording. Another, 'Catswalk',


a 1962

Cavern

instead,

rehearsal tape, but

McCartney tucked

to the Chris Barber

was never attempted

the tune

away

until 1967,

in the studio;

when he

gave

it

Band, a brass-based group better equipped than

the Beatles to explore the song's jazzy implications.

The

Beatles themselves did not take another instrumental into the

recording studio until the Rubber Soul sessions in the

The

song, '12-Bar Original',

is

autumn of 1965.

rambling piece that bears an uncanny

resemblance to the sound heard typically on the American Stax-Volt


soul label,

and

particularly to the

music of Booker

After a single complete take, the Beatles


until

Magical Mystery

T.

abondoned

and the MG's.

it.

It

Tour, in 1967, that they released a

mental. That song, 'Flying', was credited to


essentially a functional piece,

used

all

was not

second instru-

four Beatles, and was

as incidental

music for

a fantasy

scene in a psychedelic travelogue.

However

far

they had

come

in 1961, the

Beatles feeling that they were in a rut.

end of the year

behind them, as well as formal recording experience.


considered a hot band
to

locally, but. they

make an impact, they had

they had to

make

records.

A reasonable observer

lately

made

beyond

their grasp.

former drama student who,

worked

also
after

for his parents' furniture

a success of the family record shop, the

North End Music Stores on Whitechapel


Cavern. Epstein's interest was in

He

that if they were going

these goals were

a run of early academic failures,

and had

stints

They were now

might have concluded that such goals were

beyond the grasp of Brian Epstein,

store

knew

the

perform beyond Merseyside and

to

And

left

They had two Hamburg

classical

Street,

not

far

from The

music, not rock and

roil.

attended the Liverpool Philharmonic's concerts, and had become

friendly with

its

conductor, John Pritchard. Judging from the items

Liverpool

Dance

Halls

43

1961-2

he singled out
also

had

in his

weekly record news column

a fondness for

and show

knew nothing of the

Cellarful

seem odd that he was

German Polydor

entirely oblivious; after

Beat that carried his record column was

and had reported on


it is

Lilly

ofNoise, Epstein wrote that he

Beatles until customers began ordering

Bonnie', then available only on the

But

Mersey Beat, he

tunes.

In his autobiography,

to

in

Frank Sinatra, Anthony Newly, Beatrice

likely that

its utility

as

their

German

full

all,

the

'My

label. It

may

same Mersey

of news of the Beatles,

recording sessions in

some

detail.

Epsteins interest in Mersey Beat was confined

an advertising vehicle, and that since he had neither a

personal nor a commercial interest in the local beat scene, he simply

did not read the articles about

it.

As

it

turned out, Epstein was unable

to find a British distributor for the record.

pride not to turn customers


that the

away

But he made

unsatisfied,

it

a point

and when he

group played regular lunchtime sessions

at a

of

learned

club ten

The Beatles performing

under the trademark arch of

The dapper Brian Epstein

had

neither managerial

but

and

roll,

was captivated by

Beatles at

worked

first

the

hearing and

tirelessly to get

de facto Liverpool

headquarters, the Cavern.

experience nor a particular


interest in rock

their

them

a hearing beyond Liverpool

The Beatles

minutes' walk from his shop, he decided to seek


search brought
9

November

him

Cavern

to the

them

for the Beatles'

out. His

lunchtime

on

set

1961.

Nothing could have been

farther

from the regular milieu of this

dapper, upper-middle-class 27-year-old businessman, but he was


captivated by
edly,

what he saw and heard. The

initial attraction,

was extra-musical. Epstein, a homosexual who had

undoubt-

a particular

fondness for low-class ruffians, found himself in a dank, crowded

from the

club, with sweat dripping

clad rock

and

rollers

songs of their own.

stomping

They were,

their audience

and indulged

of their performance

ate

on

shouted

stage,

at

But he found the energy

in private jokes.

indeed he

and

hits

thoroughly unprofes-

in Epstein's eyes,

irresistible;

a strong attraction to the

watching a band of leather-

way through American

They smoked and

even a bit uncouth.

sional,

walls,

their

later

admitted that he

felt

most aggressive of them, Lennon.

Epstein returned to the Cavern several times over the next three

weeks, slowly persuading himself that he could successfully manage


a rock band.

When

he met with the Beatles

in early

December, he

promised to improve the quality of their bookings, get them higher


fees,

arrange performances outside Liverpool, and get

with a major British record


could not accomplish

this

label.

them

a contract

Epstein believed, however, that he

with the Beatles

as

they were. Henceforth

they were to cleanse their stage patter of obscenities and private jokes.

There would be no more smoking, eating or drinking on


sets

would be organized,

and

their leather jackets

and

ties.

Lennon
a

later

their time

stage

would be

would be exchanged

for

new work

clearly trusted that Epstein

own music would

stage show,

figure into

it.

and more

matching

suits

rules unenthusiastically.

to focus

to the point,

more

how

fully

their

Cover versions remained necessary

but Lennon and McCartney were increasingly interested in

showing off their material, and by 1962,


found

Their

could deliver on his promises,

and one thing the new regimen did was get them

on the shape of their

staples,

stage.

strictly limited,

described these changes as a Faustian bargain, and as

whole, the group adopted these

But they

on

their

the stage.

way onto

their first

several of the songs that

two albums were being

tested

on

Liverpool

Dance

Halls

1961-2

45

Epstein quickly discovered that he had underestimated the


culty of getting the
a rock
at

London-based record

He

band from Liverpool.

did, however, get

Decca Records. Mike Smith, a young

band

to Liverpool to hear the

at the

returned with a favourable report.


audition in Decca's studios on

weighed heavily against


elling

from Liverpool

when Smith

arrived,

rather than their

them

a hearing

assistant producer,

Cavern on

The

diffi-

labels to consider recording

13

was sent

December and

next step was a formal

January 1962. The conditions

success: the Beatles

had spent the night

trav-

London through heavy snowstorms, and

to

he insisted that the band use studio equipment

own

battered but familiar amplifiers. Seasoned per-

formers though they were, the high stakes

made them

nervous, some-

thing clearly audible on the fifteen-song tape that the sixty-minute


session produced.

There may have been another


Epstein had tailored the set
it

could be,

as

Lennon

list

factor

to

show

weighing against them:


off the group's versatility, but

later argued, that the material

was not

their

best.

Their versions of 'The Sheik of Araby', 'Searchin" and 'Three

Cool

Cats'

sound

uncharacteristically goofy.

One

can hear that their

account of 'September in the Rain' was meant to swing, but here

sounded wooden. Meredith Willson's


Music Man, was by then

'Till

McCartney show-stopper, but you would

not have

known

originals

were included: Lennon's songwriting debut, 'Hello

Girl',

his vocally tense

performance. Only three

and two McCartney songs that had been


few

for a

came

it

from

years, 'Like

and

after

than a month, Decca turned

mulling over the decision for more

down

The wisdom of hindsight makes


ing.

Their novelty numbers

but

this part

may

the Beatles.
the

Decca tape fascinating

have been looser and funnier

of their repertory was otherwise undocumented.

glimpse of their early songwriting

efforts. In

session yielded a professionally recorded tape,

with him on

Little

in the band's repertory

Dreamers Do' and 'Love of the Loved'. None

off especially well,

offers a

it

There Was You', from The

his rounds of the

London

any

listenlive,
It

also

case, the

which Epstein carried

record label offices.

The

rejec-

tions were

unanimous. Within two months of taking on the Beatles

as his first

management

The

first

publisher

client,

nibble, actually,

he seemed to have hit a brick wall.

came not from

a record label but

from

- Sid Colman of Ardmore and Beechwood, an EMI

46

The Beatles

subsidiary

- who

sound of the three Lennon-McCartney

liked the

songs.

Upon

to the

group than

were more important

Epstein's insistence that recordings

Colman arranged

a publishing contract,

for a

mid-

February meeting with George Martin, the head of Parlophone, an

EMI

subsidiary.

Martin, born in 1926, came to the record world with a solid musi-

and when he became head of Parlophone

cal training,

he was

in 1955,

twenty-eight years old and the youngest producer ever to be put in

charge of an

EMI

label.

Martin was a talented pianist

as a child,

and

during his school years he led a dance band, George Martin and the

Four Tune

Tellers.

World War
a

BBC

II,

As

a flyer in the Navy's Fleet Air

his off-duty

producer,

who

Arm

during

piano playing attracted the attention of

arranged for

him

perform one of his own

to

compositions on the 'Navy Mixture' radio programme. After the war

he attended the Guildhall School of Music


tion, conducting, orchestration

principal instrument.

He

also

and music

as a

student of composi-

theory, with piano as his

took up the oboe, which he played

an orchestral freelancer before taking a job in the BBC's music


In 1950,
in

EMI

command

BBC,

lured Martin away from the

Parlophone. His

at

on

the Queen's Hall Light Orchestra)

on

to

To EMI's

and

chagrin, he turned

become one of Britain's

impressed with

Steele's

Where Martin

jazz

(Humphrey

as a soloist

down Tommy

was, however,

made

his

all

mark was

the voices.

He

and with Spike Milligan

as well as Flanders

in

comedy

records. In

'Mock Mozart', an opera parody

as the

Goons -

favourites of

and Swann and 'Beyond the

Martin liked what he heard on Epstein's

The

Beatles were in

ing news that Parlophone


the

Hamburg when
would

end of the forty-eight-night

give

tapes,

Fringe'.

and drew up

had begun

tragically:

upon

a pro-

on 6 June

they received the hearten-

them

a listen.

They were near

stint at the Star-Club,

Hamburg's

newest and biggest club, where they were the main attraction.
visit

in

also recorded Peter Sellers,

visional contract that covered their formal audition session,

1962.

who went

Steele,

He

and

non-

band, the Vipers, and signed them.

really

which the actor supplied

Lennon's -

Lyttelton

slim, but not

big pre-Beatles stars.

1952 he produced Peter Ustinov's

both

and

music (Sidney Torch and

light

John Dankworth). His experience with rock was


existent.

second

as

jobs were classical orchestral

first

choral sessions, but he soon took

him

hiring

as

library.

their arrival in

Hamburg on

The

11

April

Liverpool

Dance

Halls

47

1961-2

they learned from Astrid that Sutcliffe had died of a brain haemorrhage the previous day.

Back

studios in
staff

He was

twenty-one years

old.

England, they carted their tattered gear to EMI's recording

in

Abbey Road

shook

As

for the test session.

their heads in

dismay

at the sight

Decca, the technical

at

and sound of their

equipment, and one of the engineers borrowed a speaker from an


echo chamber to provide heft to McCartney's bass sound. Martin was

immediately taken with the group's charm and humour; what he


thought needed attention was their musicianship.

Four songs were recorded that

McCartney compositions: 'Love

Me Why'. The

day, three of

Me

'P.S.

them Lennon
Love You' and 'Ask

fourth was 'Besame Mucho', a rocked-up Latin

standard that the group had played

enough

satisfied

Do',

at the

commit Parlophone

to

Decca

the recordings themselves were not suitable for release.


for

one thing, convinced that

so he gave

them 'How

It',

drumming, which he described

not the right kind of sound.

who

He

did not

he considered the best looking and

visual image.

session

felt

He was

that

not,

song by Mitch Murray, to

He

learn for the next session, scheduled for 4 September.

Pete Best's

he

was chartworthy,

their original material

Do You Do

Martin was

session.

to the group, but

as

also disliked

not regular enough and

recommend
likely to

replacing Best,

be a focus of their

But he told Epstein that he intended

to bring in a

drummer.

Lennon, McCartney and Harrison had

Hamburg

Best. In

drummer

for

they had

become

their

own doubts about

friendly with

Ringo

Starr, the

Rory Storm and the Hurricanes, another Liverpool

group. Musically and temperamentally, he fitted into the group better

than Best.

And when

he joined, the constellation was complete:

Lennon, McCartney, Harrison and

Starr out front, Epstein

and

Martin working behind the scenes.


Starr,

whose

on 7 July 1940
in 1943.

real

name

to Elsie

He was

streets until

and

his

Richard Starkey, was born in Liverpool

Gleave and Richard Starkey,

who

divorced

and

a sickly child: at six, appendicitis, peritonitis

string of mishaps kept

years later he

is

him

hospitalized for

was hospitalized with

he was

fifteen.

work experience

pleurisy,

more than

which kept him

Seven

a year.

olf the

His schooling was virtually non-existent,

in a variety of

short-term jobs was limited.

His main enthusiasm was for playing drams, starting on

a kit

bought

48

The Beatles

for

him by

his stepfather,

1953. In 1957,

Clayton

Harry Graves, who had married

when he was an

Skiffle

Elsie in

apprentice joiner, he joined the Eddie

Band, and got a fancier trap

set.

Two

years later he

joined the Raving Texans, which later became Rory Storm and the

Hurricanes. His penchant for wearing an inordinate

number of rings

earned him his nickname, which also appealed to him because of its

cowboy

aura.

And

Starr

seemed

a better stage

name than

Starkey.

He

joined the Beatles on 18 August 1962.

The

firing

of Best was handled with what the Beatles

ted was shameful cowardice.

They

told

later

him nothing of their

admitdispleas-

ure with his work, nor did they pass along Martin's comments.

Above, Richard Starkey


better
-

of

known as Ringo

crouching as a

member

Rory Storm and the

Hurricanes, the

band

which he drummed

for

until

the Beatles lured him


in

Starr

away

August 1962

Right,

was

onstage clowning

part of the Beatles'

act before Brian Epstein

persuaded them

of the

benefits of professional

decorum. Here Harrison,

McCartney, Best and


Lennon enjoy a rave up
the Cavern.

at

He

Liverpool

Dance

Halls

49

1961-2

Richard Starkey (Ringo

George Harrison

Starr), with

Tower Ballroom,

at the

Brighton,

in

New

November 1961.

member

of Rory Storm

Still

and

the Hurricanes, Starr

sported a beard and had

a grey streak

back

hair,

would

lose

in his

slicked

both of which he

when he

joined

the Beatles nine months later.

was

out of the picture soon after the Parlophone audition.

effectively

When

he heard rumours of his imminent dismissal,

Epstein offered only reassurance. So


ity that

16

in

mid-June,

was with no sense of insecur-

he arrived for a meeting with Epstein on the morning of

August only

Ringo

it

to hear Epstein blurt out, 'the boys

want you out and

in'.

There

is

only a limited degree to which Best's

Beatles can be assessed now. His playing

drumming with

the

on the Decca tapes and the

Parlophone version of 'Besame Mucho' (the only surviving recording

from the 6 June

session)

is

proficient but not inspired. Best could

out a texture with an

efficient pattern

handed tapping, and

sensible use of the cymbals. His playing

Sheridan recordings

is

of quick

considerably more

lusty.

rolls,

fill

rapid, light-

on the

The few BBC

broadcasts on which Best performed survive in recordings so fuzzy


that the

drumming

is

hardly audible, but what can be heard sounds

straightforward, dutiful
lacks, in these

examples,

and sometimes
is

energetic.

What

his playing

the variety and personality that Ringo

50

Th e Decries

Starr's

drumming added

to the group's performances.

But Best had a

following in Liverpool, and his firing was controversial.

Granada Television filmed the


22 August,
version of

it

The
John Lennon's

first

wife

Cynthia (nee Powell),


looking very

much

Brigitte Bardot,

notion,

in

'We want

Beatles

When

Cavern on

as the Beatles finish their

from audience can be heard

a voice

Pete'.

would

had time

scarely have

to reconsider even if

they had been so inclined. In addition to daily performances, they

were rehearsing material for the 4 September session.

And amid

all

like

Lennon's

the early 1960s,

of the ideal

caught a hint of the dissension:

'Some Other Guy',

calling out,

Beatles in action at the

woman.

Lennon discovered

this,

that Cynthia Powell, his girlfriend since art

was pregnant. John and Cynthia were married on

college,

the day after the

Granada

filming; their son, Julian,

23 August,

was born on

8 April 1962.

new drummer,

Martin, informed that the Beatles had a

did not

bring in a studio player on 4 September.

They recorded 'How Do You

Do

and reconsider one of their

but persuaded Martin to shelve

It'

own

Me

songs

as a first single.

Then

it

they turned their attention to 'Love

Do', lavishing considerable effort

fifteen takes plus

overdubs -

on what must be the simplest Lennon McCartney composition the


Beatles ever recorded.

As

turned out, Martin was not

it

Starr's

drumming

session for

session

11

September,

time hiring

Best's.

on

the trace of a Latin beat.

impressed with

He booked

Andy White, an

Do' was tackled again,

Starr playing tambourine.

(with Starr on maracas)

would be

this

Me

drummer. 'Love

White on drums and

Starr

much more

than he had been with

"PS.

Love You',

Somehow,

this

White

another

experienced

time with
also

McCartney

drummed

ballad with

the Beatles persuaded Martin that

able to handle the job once he settled in; this

was the

only session for which Martin employed a stand-in drummer. At the

end of the
You' as the

session,

Martin

first single. It

was

released,

first

release

on

settled

did not

October, but

it

on 'Love

a bit different
It

was the

ized the

on

fire

Love

when

its

gently bluesy tune and

second

its

served notice that there was something

going on in Liverpool.

Beatles'

it

Number 17, not bad for a


band. And with its laconic har-

reached

by an unknown provincial

it

Do' and 'PS.

set the British charts

monica introduction, played by Lennon,


distinctive vocal harmonies,

Me

single, 'Please Please

pop world, and with good

reason.

When

Me'

that galavan-

the Beatles

first

Liverpool

George

Dance

Halls

1961-2

51

played

Martin, a

schoolmasterish overseer of

it

for Martin,

was

it

a slow ballad,

the Beatles' recording


it,

sessions
listens

as

in

the early days,

McCartney and

Lennon play him one

of their

songs during an early


to

EMI's studios

Road.

in

visit

Abbey

meant

to

sound

like a

Roy

Orbison song. Martin liked the song but hated the way they played

and told them

to spice

it

up.

When

they returned to

Abbey Road

on 26 November, they had quickened the tempo and brightened the


arrangement, and Martin cobbled together an introduction using the

opening melody
guitar.

line.

But Martin

sound on 'Love

On

felt

Me

Harrison played

stage,

that the

this

harmonica had been

Do', so on the recording,

Harrison's guitar line. Martin also

introduction on
a useful signature

Lennon doubles

came up with

the brisk chord

sequence that ends the song.


'Please Please

Me'

lasts just

ary density of musical detail

begin with,
then,

is

different

and unusual

refrain,

for a

move

under two minutes, but an extraordinpacked into

it.

The

vocal harmony, to

from anything the Beatles had attempted

pop song. Each

and on each of the

unison, then

is

lines,

verse has only

two

lines

Lennon and McCartney begin

gradually apart as

McCartney

repeats his

note and Lennon takes the descending main melody.

until

and

in

opening

52

The Beatles

Liverpool

Dance

Halls

1961-2

53

far cry

from the

scruffy,

leather-clad rockers Epstein

discovered at the Cavern,


the freshly-scrubbed,
carefully tailored Beatles

perform on
in

1963.

British television

54

The Beatles

A quickly ascending series


from

Starr links the

first

of guitar chords and a rapid-fire burst

and second verse

lines,

and

a single line

guitar figure leads into the pleading (and suggestive) refrain, 'come

on, please please me,

oh yeah,

like

please

you. Lennon repeats

'come on' four times, with each of his solo invocations followed by
a

harmonized version by McCartney and Harrison. The solo plea

rises

gradually in pitch, and the harmonized responses,

rise.

The

rise, fall

and

tension created by this seemingly simple figure, which

seven seconds,

is

Underpinning the verse melody

is

an atypically monotonous yet

remarkably effective bass line from McCartney,

chord roots

in a

lasts

magical.

who

pneumatic repeating eighth-note

simply plays the

figure (that

is,

two

notes to the beat), adorned only by occasional grace notes, executed


as

quick

slides

McCartney's
to sing

on

its

from below.

It is

only

at the

'come on' section that

bass playing steps into character, with a line that

own, playing off the rhythm of the solo 'come

seems

on'

Though they would


eventually play

in

big

concert halls and stadiums,


in

the Beatles' early years

cinemas were the traditional


venues

for rock concerts.

These theatres could


scarcely keep up with the

demand

for tickets; here a

few fans brandish

theirs.

Liverpool

Dance

Halls

1961-2

55

figure.

And

two

in the

bars that lead

from that section back

to the

of the verse melody, McCartney's bass line positively dances.

start

Starr, too,

is

verses solidly, filling in

- and supporting the 'come

gaps between vocal lines

with rapid

accompanying the

at his finest,

and driving home the chordal

fills,

finale

on' section

with a chain of

sharp, machine-gun-like bursts.

The

bridge section

actual

number of bars

Lennon

melody and chord progression,

the secondary

which the Beatles usually

called 'the

required

want

picturesque element.

to complain; yet the melody,

on two adjacent

note,

is

a musical evocation

of whining, softened somewhat by the harmonized

McCartney and Harrison. But

in the end,

it

The

resigned sigh, the line, 'why

Most

listeners at the

in

lyrics.

sung by

word of the

line,

'it's

so

bridge ends with the equivalent of a

do you make me

blue?'

time would not have concerned themselves

with the song's harmonic touches, instrumental

ways

'ah'

explodes in frustration,

leaping up an octave, into falsetto on the final

hard to reason with you'.

of the

eight', regardless

adds another

sings here that he doesn't

built of repeating figures

middle

which the music mirrored

felicities

or even the

the bridge, belied) the

(or, in

More immediately relevant was that it was a great tune, and


to it - in fact, you could hardly help dancing to it.

you could dance

Martin was so confident that the revamped 'Please Please Me' worked

when

that

the Beatles finished recording

studio intercom, 'you've just

go there immediately,
ii

January 1963,

number one on 22
It

had some

it,

he announced over the

first

number

as later Beatles releases

cruised

it

made your

up the charts

It

did not

would. Released on

weeks before hitting

for six

February.

help.

EMI, which had

typically ignored Parlophone's

productions, quickly got behind Martin's

took a shine to the Beatles

as well.

handful more appearances that

new

year.

March

their

1962,

The BBC
first

radio

and made

By mid-1963, they were

on the BBC's pop programmes, and even had


the Beatles. Epstein

discovery.

They had made

appearance on a Teenager's Turn show on

name, Pop Go

one.'

a series in their

was getting them

regulars

own

television appear-

ances too. Suddenly, they seemed to be everywhere. Looking at


Epstein's neatly typed, detailed schedules, they

saw themselves com-

mitted to one, two or three performances every day, sometimes

punctuated by

as

many

as three

BBC

sessions

and

a television date.

56

The Beatles

The

radio programmes,

which

typically included brief interviews,

offered hints of the Beatles' cheeky pun-driven


press picked

up on

As 1962 ended,
a

it

a quality the

seemed that the Beatles were working

band could work. But throughout

finally at

humour,

quickly.

1963, with the

as

hard

as

fame they sought

hand, they stepped up the pace and intensity of their assault

on the world.

'

3
Q

3
Q.
<>

GO

They learned so

quickly.

But when Ifirst met

them, I had absolutely no idea at all they

would write decent

material. They wrote songs

that were pretty awful - 'One After pop

When

the Beatles

were

presented the Variety Club


of

Great

Britain's

1963 award by Harold


Wilson, then the opposition
leader, John Lennon

quipped, 'thanks for the


Purple Hearts,' referring

US

military

awarded

wounded

medal

to soldiers
in

'PS.

the best

I Love You

of them.

Lt

and

'Love

Me Do' were

was pretty rough

stuff.

Show

Business Personalities of

to

and

action.

didn't really

blame the guy who had turned

them down.

George Martin, 1993

58

The Beatles

Beatlemania

in

England 1963

Just before the sessions for 'Please Please

'Ask
in

Me Why'

flipside

its

collaboration called

the Beatles had spent two weeks at the Star-Club

Hamburg, sharing

and they returned


staying until

Me' and

Lennon-McCartney

slightly Latin-flavoured

bill

with one of their heroes,

to the Star-Club

New Year's

Eve.

On

one

last

Little Richard,

time in mid-December,

that final night,

one of their

Liverpool colleagues taped their performance on amateur equipment.

The

tapes languished in Liverpool until 1972,

found them and approached Harrison and


release

tually

them and

found

split

a buyer,

the profits.

They

when

Allan Williams

Starr with a proposal to

declined, but Williams even-

and the tapes were

released over the Beatles'

objections in 1977.
In their original state, the recordings are quite raw: the perform-

ances are imperfect, and without Epstein there to oversee them,


the Beatles slip back into the profane stage patter that

pre-Epstein

But before the tapes were

style.

an ambitious editing and sonic restoration job, the

was an idealized thirty-song

had been

result

set that offers a fascinating

Beatles at a turning-point in their career.

It

captures

their

underwent

released, they

of which

glimpse of the

them

in the

milieu that shaped them, playing rock favourites, covers of recent


hits,

and new songs of their own. But they were already on

their

way

out of that world.

When

they returned to the studio on

Me' was making steady progress up the


and though not

yet

number

one,

it

was

11

February, 'Please Please

New Musical Express chart,


a certified hit.

tional strategy called for the quick release of an

these successes. Martin

album

had already broken the mould

The convento capitalize

on

by presenting

the Beatles as a cohesive group rather than as a singer with backup,

and by favouring
writers.

Now

their

there

own

album would present the


Martin followed

songs over those of professional song-

would be another innovation.

this

hits,

padded out with

Typically, a

lightly

pop

cooked

filler.

formula only to the extent that he included the

Beatlemania

in

59

England 1963

four songs released on singles. Another producer might have increased

of available material by using the

his quotient

Do You Do

decided to begin the album sessions


if it

were a potential

The

recordings of

file

'How

and 'Besame Mucho'. But Martin and the Beatles

It'

fresh,

and

to treat every

song

as

single.

session for this debut album, Please Please

Me, was amazingly

productive. In just under ten hours of session time, the Beatles

new songs -

recorded eleven

one of the

originals,

'Hold

five originals

Me

and

six covers.

attempted again, more successfully, seven months


sessions for the second album,

Please

Me was

With the

the Beatles' stage

set.

Of those,

was temporarily shelved,

Tight',

later

be

during the

The model

Beatles.

to

for Please

Like their concerts, the album

begins and ends with upbeat rockers. Between those book-ends,


the group's versatility

displayed almost in variety

is

moment

of the Beatles has an image-establishing

McCartney, already identified

of Honey'. Yet he opens the album

Saw Her Standing

Arthur Alexander's

There'.

Lennon

closes

show

Love

tune, 'A Taste

rock voice, singing his

also takes

Anna (Go To Him)' and

You', but his renderings


a slight current

in his

Lennon

Each

style.

as the band's balladeer in 'P.S.

You', takes that further with his cover of a waltzy

'I

show

in the spotlight.

up

the Shirelles' 'Baby,

show something of his

own

few ballads,
It's

aggressive edge, with

of bitterness. As McCartney opens the album,

it,

singing the Isley Brothers' 'Twist and Shout' with

an explosive vocal

grittiness. Starr applies his distinctively nasal

to another Shirelles tune, 'Boys'.

And

Harrison,

who

tone

retained a heavy

scouse accent in his singing voice, gave slightly fragile performances

of a Goffin-King

The

show

covers

America.

classic, 'Chains',

You Want

song, 'Do

One

is

most prominent

to

Know

and

a lively

Lennon-McCartney

a Secret'.

the presence of new influences, again from

Motown,

a Detroit-based style (also the

label specializing in the

music) in

name of the

which black vocal

groups melded rhythm and blues with aspects of gospel and top-forty

pop

styles.

Both within and on the periphery of this new

another genre new to rock, though familiar

Three of the

American

six covers

girl

on

Please Please

Me were

groups - 'Boys' and 'Baby

and 'Chains' was

would add the

a hit for the

Cookies.

It's

On

style

was

in the 1940s: girl groups.


first

recorded by

You' were Shirelles songs,

With the Beatles the group

Marvellettes' 'Please Mister Postman'

and the Donays'

60

The Beatles

Beatlemania

Left,

Paul

in

Enqland 1963

McCartney, the

most personable of the


Beatles,

eager

was

Heart'. And their concert sets still included the Teddy


Know Him is to Love Him', with the gender changed.
The Motown and girl group songs did not pass through the

'Devil in

group's

interviewers.

Her

Bears' 'To

often the most

to discuss the

work with

61

on Lennon's and McCartney's

Beatles repertory without leaving traces

compositional

and response

styles.

Both genres made prominent use of gospel's

gesture, in

ing chorus.

The

effect

Please Me',

and

its

melody and the

a solo vocal line

is

heard near the end of 'PS.

syllables, 'sha la

And

girl

it

main

the chorus singing the

or 'doo

la,'

part of the Beatles arsenal, starting with


Secret'.

call

repeated by a back-

solo vocalist responding with free-floating, impro-

of this move was to have the lead

by nonsense

is

heard in the 'come on' section of 'Please

mirror image

visatory amplifications

A variation

is

which

may

wah

Love You'.

singer's lines

punctuated

doo.' This too

be that the Beatles' interest in

groups led them to expand their harmonic

became

Know
Motown and

'Do You Want

to

from the pure

style

duet sound of the Everly Brothers to a richer texture, often with a


bluesy

cast.

Of course,

Me are

much

as

as the

cover versions

were drawing from, the

Beatles'

the originals.

ship. 'Ask

Me Why',

real

Some show

tell

us about the wells the

points of interest

on

Please Please

the signs of continuing apprentice-

for example, has an underlying cha-cha beat that

even in 1963 was on the border of sounding dated. 'Misery' and


'There's a Place',

by contrast, present a new kind of vocal and

mental texture, something different from 'Love

and

Please Me',

a precursor of the

Me

Do' and

instru-

'Please

sound the group would explore

throughout 1963. Both have Lennon and McCartney singing tandem


lines, in

points.

unison for stretches but with ear-catching divergences

And

sound, energetic, efficient drumming, an active bass


patches of extraneous but effective colour

line,

and brief

on

'There's a Place'.

songs, they are not timeless masterpieces. But they capture

something of the adolescent

spirit

of 1963. 'There's a

instance, argues that the best escape

unrequited love
It

key

Martin's brief punctuat-

ing piano figure in 'Misery', Lennon's harmonica

As

at

both feature a tightly compressed lead and rhythm guitar

was not an

is

to turn inward, to a

uncommon

conceit. Five

world of introspective

months

later

away, the Beach Boys recorded Brian Wilsons 'In

what more

Place', for

from the heartache and sorrow of


fantasy.

and half a world

My

Room',

sophisticated exploration of comparable sentiments.

some-

62

The Beatles

Wilson

is

USA.

begin with the same


'There's a Place'

original form,

Lennon

it

go'.

But

Saw Her

'I

time has not tarnished.

The song

is

but Lennon added some useful touches. In

began: 'She was just seventeen, never been a beauty

replaced the second line with and you

The arrangement
sometime

after

version of the song with an

know what

picturesque than McCartney's

less

and exactly the

yet wonderfully suggestive

tape recorded

can

are period pieces.

vitality that

mean' - hardly profound, and

in the song.

place where

line, 'There's a

and 'Misery'

Standing There' has a

its

yet

Yet the songs are uncannily similar and in fact

essentially McCartney's,

queen'.

which was not

unlikely to have heard the Beatles song,

released in the

evolved too.

moment

right line for that

A Cavern

Club

line.,

rehearsal

mid-August 1962 includes an embryonic

awkward harmonica accompaniment,

square phrasing and seemingly unfinished bridge

lyrics.

By

the time

they played the song at the Star Club in December, the harmonica

was dropped, and the song was


Melodically,

in

finished form.

its

could not begin more simply: the

it

really just inflected speech.

But

two

first

just as expectations drop,

provides a beautifully arching line, a short rhapsody on the


the

way

Lennon

couplet,

and the
roots:

way beyond compare'.

she looked was

harmony

sings a lower

active bass line keeps the

it is

similar in shape

'I'm Talking

About

Several sonic
tures are

in thirds, fourths

too.

An

it

'and

sixths,
its

of Chuck Berry's

their

way

to

their

becoming

Beatles signa-

octave leap to a falsetto 'oooh',

Me', would return

made

and

song moving while betraying

spirit to the bass line

in

most of their

roots are in the songs of the Isley Brothers

the Beatles

lyric,

the verse's final

You', a song the Beatles performed at the time.

gimmicks on

found here

in 'Please Please

and

On

lines are

McCartney

own by

and

incorporating

hits

first

of 1963.

Little Richard,
it

in the

heard
Its

but

amalgam of

English and American styles that yielded their identifiably Beatlesque

sound.

They

also

days of screaming

found
girls

it

a useful effect in their stage shows.

The

was upon them, and when they stepped up

the microphone, shook their

heads and delivered

to

that falsetto 'oooh',

the audiences went even wilder.

However, the Beatles disliked

literal repetition.

So when they

repeated an effect, even something as seemingly inconsequential as a


falsetto 'oooh', they tried to find a different use for

When

they returned to

Abbey Road

it

the second time.

to record their third single

on

Beatlemania

63

England 1963

in

ABBEY
ROAD
A component

of

Beatlemania was a desire


to

own

peripherally.

however

Once

became known

it

that the

Beatles recorded at EMI's


in

Abbey Road,

street signs

vanished

regularly. This

up

March, they brought 'From

again.

But where the

effect

Me

to You', a

song that uses that 'oooh'

had been merely an ornament

in

one turned

at auction years later.

Her Standing

There',

it

found

its

to You', giving the

songs second

burst of energy on

its final

Lennon and McCartney


unison, but on the

and

last

way

sing the

three

into the lyrics of 'From

line, 'if there's

word. In

fact,

first

anything

the effect

three

is

Saw

'I

anything associated

with the Beatles,

studios

N.W.8
Me

can do' a

expanded

words of that

here.

line in

words McCartney leaps up an octave

sings in a falsetto with a slight vibrato that suggests the head-

shaking of the stage show.

Lennon and McCartney were

also testing a

new

theory here, the

notion that songs in which 'me' and 'you' were used prominently and
repeated frequently would strike listeners as personal, and would have
a special appeal.
rule the

pop

may seem

It

charts

quaint that the Beatles,

and spawn countless

imitators,

discovering the key to audience appeal. But as they

Me

to You', they

record, then in

may

were savouring the success of their

its

second week

at the top.

who would soon

were so intent on

composed 'From
first

number one

However confident they

have been, they had no reason to assume that everything they

touched would turn to gold, and

at this

discovering the mechanics of hitmaking.

point they were intent on

64

The Beatles

Beatlemania

in

65

England 1963

Long

after the shrill

obbligato cf screaming
fans rendered acoustic
guitars impractical for stage
use, the Beatles

used them

in

sometimes

the recording

studio and, as Lennon

demonstrates here,
television

in

their

appearances.

66

The Beatles

Once 'From

Me to You'

tional

followed 'Please Please Me' to the top of

Lennon and McCartney tweaked

the British charts,

On

formula once again.

their

they bounded into

July,

composi-

Abbey Road

with 'She Loves You, a song they had written only four days
a hotel

room

earlier in

Newcastle upon Tyne. The recording they made that

in

day had the quintessential

early Beatles sound: vocals lines that begin

unison and end in harmony, jangly guitars, an assertive bass line

in

drum

linked to a steady

beat with plenty of cymbals, and that head-

shaking falsetto 'oooh', here placed strategically before the song's most
ear-catching element, the joyously cathartic 'yeah, yeah, yeah' refrain.
It

would be

their first million seller.

Without question, 'She Loves You'


construction, yet

no

bridge. Structurally,

all

of which lead back to the

it is

of the

a masterpiece

of pop song

is,

for example,

nothing but an introduction, three

those 'yeahs' in a sixth chord


sixth degree

is

number of rules. There

breaks a

it

refrain, plus

scale) that

an ending that

makes the chord

slightly

common

ambiguous and

Lennon and McCartney

Martin came to

chord was a

final,

and

insisted,

delicious touch in a

of great hooks.

full

The

all

trick in the

1940s, but archaic in 1963. But

song

verses,

up

major chord with an added E (the

unstable. Martin objected to this ending, a

realize that the

ties

lyric

was

also

something new

for the Beatles. Until

now, the

'you in their songs was a prospective, current or former girlfriend.


Typically in

pop

moon

either to

songs,

when men

sing to other

men, they do so

about their woman, or to deliver blustery warnings

about encroaching on their

turf.

But

in 'She

Loves You', the singer

has listened to the lament of his friend's paramour, apparently in

some

detail,

later, in

and

'You're

is

Two

urging his friend to patch things up.

Going

to Lose

That

years

they took this approach

Girl',

again, but with a twist: if you don't treat the lady right,

I'll

steal

her away.
'She Loves You' was clearly
diate use, but
to think

by

of composing

They had

composed

for the Beatles'

now Lennon and McCartney were


as

own immebeginning

an endeavour separate from performing.

a ready market. Epstein,

calling in musical

also

convinced that he had found

management, expanded

his

his business to include

other groups and singers, mostly from Liverpool, and several benefited

from access

to

Lennon-McCartney songs

that the Beatles either

Beatlemania

67

England 1963

in

wrote

specifically for

'Hello Little Girl'

mer hat-check

girl at

use.

a hit for the Fourmost. Cilia Black, a for-

the Cavern, had an early hit with 'Love of the

Loved' and was later given other McCartney songs,


'Step Inside Love'.

own

them, or found unsuitable for their

became

And

'It's

and

for You'

'Bad to Me' was written for Billy J. Kramer

and the Dakotas.


Performers outside the Epstein circle tapped the Beatles' golden

songwriting machine

as well. In 1963, the Beatles

with the Rolling Stones, a blues band making


still

became

way

in

friendly

London, and

without a number one record. Lennon and McCartney cobbled

together

'I

Wanna Be Your

Stones' early style.

When

charts, the group's singer,

Richards, decided that

own

its

if

songs, so could they.

Man',

a riffy, basic

song that suited the

the Stones' recording hit the top of the

Mick Jagger, and

its

rhythm

guitarist,

Lennon and McCartney could

They were not

by 1964, rock bands that composed

their

Keith

write their

alone in this realization, and

own music -

rather than

recording songs handed to them by their record producers

became

the rule rather than the exception.

Between

visits to

touring schedule.

The Rolling Stones were


the Beatles' strongest rivals

among

bands, but

British

the two groups maintained

a competitive friendship.

Lennon and McCartney


wrote the Stones'

number one

hit,

Be Your Man'
later,

members

'I

in

first

Wanna
1963;

of the Stones

appeared

in

the Beatles

You Need

Is

Love' telecast,

and

'All

the Beatles' faces are

scattered on the cover of the

Stones'

album

Their Satanic

Majesties Request.

Abbey Road,

By August

the Beatles undertook a non-stop

1963, Epstein took

them

entirely off the

68

The Beatles

ballroom

now they were playing only in proper theatres, on


And by the end of the year, the length of their stage set

circuit:

raised stages.

was reduced from an hour

to thirty minutes.

They were

ing increasingly regular visitors to the radio studios of the

where they were not only guests on shows

like

We Go and Side

own

Beatles.

by Side, but also had their

becom-

also

BBC,

Saturday Club, Here


showcase, Pop

Another Beatles-centred show, From Us

to You,

Go

the

was broadcast

on bank holidays between December 1963 and August 1964, and


June 1965 they were the stars of The Beatles Invite You

to

in

Take a Ticket

to Ride.

For these programmes - fifty-three of them, broadcast between


8

March 1962 and 7 June

1965

- they performed

live

or with minimal

overdubbing in the BBC's studios. Their sheer productivity was


amazing: they recorded 88 songs
as a

dozen versions, for a

88 songs, 36 were

total

'I'll

Be

On My Way',

Lennon McCartney

The BBC

some

in as

many

Of the

of more than 280 recordings.

numbers from

never committed to tape at

at these sessions,

their early stage repertory that they

EMI. Of those, only one -

the lovely

another hit for Billy J. Kramer was a


original.

Chuck

recordings of songs by Little Richard,

Perkins and Arthur Alexander (as well as

Berry, Carl

more arcane numbers

like

Mikis Theodorakis's 'Honeymoon Song') are an important source of


information about the Beatles' early repertory.
Beatles did record for

EMI show how

And

the songs that the

the group performed their hits

without the benefit of studio trickery and unencumbered by the

shrill

obbligato of high-pitched screaming that pervades recordings of

their

concerts.

They demonstrate

that the group's performances were not

quite as calcified as the Beatles themselves often claimed they were.


Harrison's solo in 'Till There

Was

ingly florid between July 1963,


at

Abbey Road, and June

1964,

You', for example,

when
when

grew

increas-

they recorded the song


they dropped

it

from

their

concert repertory.

At the end of 1963 they were not yet making


between

their recording

in the cards.

make than

and performing

Their second album, With the

its

predecessor,

but that was clearly

Beatles,

took longer to

and by then the Beatles had adopted the

view that singles and albums should be treated

There would

a firm distinction

careers,

be exceptions later in their career,

as separate projects.

but for the

moment

Beatlemania

in

69

England 1963

they argued that

fans

if their

had bought

their singles, they

should

not have to buy the same tracks again on albums. In immediate practical

In

on

meant

term, this

its

that the four songs released

Me could not be

Please Please

Me. The opener, Lennon's Motown-inspired

Please Please

response refrain

a back

outing, the

Me', his

listener's

attention with

and forth on the word

sive cover, Barrett Strong's

this

singles since

broad outline, With the Beatles follows the pattern established

Be Long', immediately grabs the

But

on

new album.

considered for the

band supplied

'Money', closes the


eight originals

'yeah'.

set.

And

and

an aggres-

As on the

and performed

Won't

'It

its call

first

six covers.

time one of the originals was a Harrison song, 'Don't Bother


first

devoted the

composing

rest

credit since 'Cry for a Shadow'. Harrison

of his microphone time to

Chuck

Over

Berry's 'Roll

Beethoven' and the Donays' 'Devil in Her Heart'. Stuck for something for Starr to sing,

Lennon and McCartney gave him

Your Man', the rave-up they had written


McCartney's

facility as a

There Was You', but he

Me Tight'

and the magnificent

memorable of the
It is

crooner

is

again tapped for a

also sings his


'All

Wanna Be

show

tune, 'Till

own somewhat punchier 'Hold

My Loving',

certainly the

most

originals.

Lennon, however, who dominates the album.

on most of the

'I

for the Rolling Stones.

He

sings lead

originals (an indication, usually, of which collaborator

was the principal composer),

as well as

on three Motown

covers,

all

hard driving songs that showcase his remarkably communicative


voice. All told, the

Yet ironically,

more

it

album has

also

a tougher edge than Please Please

sounds more

leisurely,

more

Me.

carefully considered,

settled.

This time the sessions were staggered, with stretches of work in


July and September, and touch-up sessions in October.

were learning that even


sets,

if their

albums documented

The

Beatles

their concert

they need not be limited by the instrumentation of their stage

arrangements.

They

raised

no objection

to

Martin adding piano parts

to

'Money' and 'You Really Got a Hold on Me', or

to

'I

Wanna Be Your

Second Time',

them

Hammond

Man'. They even gave him the solo

a graceful, single-line piano part.

to experiment with textures.

On

'Till

in

Martin encouraged

There Was You', Harrison

plays a seemingly un-Beatlesque nylon-stringed Spanish guitar,


Starr, lured

away from

organ

'Not a

his trap set, plays bongos.

and

Lennon, McCartney

70

The Beatles

and

Starr

add mildly exotic percussion - tambourine,

African bongo

And

to 'Don't Bother Me'.

four

all

and an

claves

show

their enthu-

siasm for a studio trick Martin showed them: strengthening the lead
vocals

by double-tracking them.

Musically, the
ticular,

album

is

a decisive step forward. Harrison, in par-

seems to have been listening to some jazz

his idea to

end 'She Loves You' with that

move, and

his solos in 'All

My Loving'

a decidedly jazzy accent.

More

Got

fully at

to

Do' with a chord

rock, an

E augmented, with an added

stands entirely outside the song:


return. Yet

it

and

perfectly,

play a

home

in jazz

lingers in the

There Was You' have

and

The chord

and does not

Harrison goes on to

as

more commonplace progression of major and minor

Towards the end of the


ing equipment at

sessions,

EMI

Abbey Road, new

chords.

installed four-track record-

much

tape machines that allowed

greater flexibility than the two-track recorders

Martin had used

then. Two-track was fine for orchestral recording: with

phone placement and

mood

Motown-inspired

memory, even

I've

entirely foreign to

ninth and eleventh.

sets the song's slightly bluesy,


it

'Till

he opens Lennon's All

rings out at the start

it

had been

sixth chord, a standard jazz

and

blatantly,

guitar. It

sensible mixing,

until

good micro-

yields a realistic stereo

it

image. But the recordings Martin was making with the Beatles were

more complex.

In order to retain

full

control over the balances, he

was recording instruments on one track and vocals on the

Overdubbing meant copying

to a

other.

second tape, which entailed a

loss

in quality.

The upgrade was long


Martin that
labels to

EMI

in

overdue; indeed,

adopt new technology. During a

Martin attended Frank

American

affiliate,

it

had not been

England was invariably the

visit to

among

the

lost

which allowed

to see that the

on

the major

USA in

1958,

Sinatra's recording sessions at Capitol,

and was astonished

three-track recorders,

last

EMI's

company used

for stereo orchestral backing

tracks as well as a separate vocal track that could be centred during

the mixing process.

EMI

Upon

to install similar

his return to

equipment, but

London he

his requests

tried to persuade

were ignored.

Martin's use of the old two-track system was adequate for

making

monaural recordings, but militated against properly balanced stereo


mixes. Although stereo was not yet a major concern, particularly
in

England,

EMI

released

its

recordings in both

mono and

stereo

Beatlemania

in

England 1963

71

formats, and Martin had


in

little

choice but to provide stereo versions

which the extreme separation of the raw tapes was modified only
because the early stereo

slightly. Still, exactly

is

so primitive, these

recordings offer a bird's eye view of the groups instrumental and

and

vocal arrangements,

mono

reveal details that are lost in the

compressed

mixes.

Now the

Four-track recording solved the problem.

instruments

could take two or more tracks. Lead and backing vocals could be
recorded separately, and the stereo mixing sessions would yield more
artfully

balanced recordings. Most

crucially, the

expanded

facilities

gave the Beatles greater leeway for experimentation, a freedom they

would

exercise as they learned

more about studio technology. But

their first recordings

on the new equipment remained

17 October, near the

end of the With

had

in the songs they

in

mind

brought

the Beatles sessions, they

for their next single,

'I

On

fairly basic.

Want

to

Hold

Your Hand' and 'This Boy'.


'This Boy' was something

new

particular: a slow ballad, based

doo-wop, performed
bridge, in

wordless

on

for the Beatles,

entirely in close three-part

which Lennon

Lennon

for

in

harmony. Even the

steps out for a full-throttle solo vocal, has a

harmony backing from Harrison and McCartney. Appealing

but not earthshaking,

it is

nevertheless the progenitor of a long line of

harmonized Beatles songs, from

lushly

and

a chord progression native to 1950s'

'If

Fell'

and

'Yes

It Is'

to 'Sun

King' and 'Because'.

Want

'I

to

Hold Your Hand',

reprises the celebratory

tionally structured.

torn torn roll that


In

'I

Want

to

guitar chords

of the

title

The

Beatles

become
is

let

me

collaboration,

more convena

the introduction

is

more ambitious:

a springboard, catapulting the listener into the

was exactly the

music

is

had opened 'She Loves You' with

actually quite subversive.

that the Beatles were safe


closely, the

Lennon-McCartney

tumbled immediately into the introductory chorus.

Hold Your Hand',

The song

verse.

sound of 'She Loves You', but

tells a

sort of thing that

The innocent
would

and wholesome; yet

different story.

for

declaration

reassure parents

anyone

That eager octave

listening

leap ('you'll

hold your hand') that leads into the refrain expressed undis-

guised sexual tension, and the bridge amplifies the image of false
restraint: the studied

you

feel

happy

calmness of its opening

inside',

is

line,

and when

belied in the building energy

and

touch

rising

72

The Beatles

melody of its conclusion,


I

can't hide,

'it's

my love

such a feeling that

can't hide,

can't hide'.

Seeing a sexual undercurrent in such a seemingly naive song

not merely analytical fantasy. In the manuscript of the song's

(now

in the British

Museum), McCartney jokingly noted

me

verse refrain as 'you'll let

more unbuttoned
to

the second

hold your thing', and in some of his

interviews,

hold your head' which

is

lyrics

is

Lennon

song

referred to the

what he often seems

as

'I

want
on

to be singing

tapes of the group's concerts.

The importance of texture

in this recording

first line.

McCartney and Lennon

Harrison

fills

set in the

same

sing

in the pauses in the lyric

it

is

evident from the

in unison, but

when

with a winding guitar line

register as the voices, his playing

seems

less

an embel-

lishment than an integral part of the melody. There are also small

but effective touches - the stray twangs of a solo guitar that dot the
texture like sighs,

and the overdubbed handclapping that supports

rhythm and brightens the

the

an important element.

also

octave leap on the

word

record's sound. Starr's

When Lennon

drumming

is

and McCartney take

'hand', Starr plays a cascading

the bridge, he taps along with patient steadiness until

and then mirrors the tension of the vocal

line
hat.

fill.

'I

their

And

in

can't hide',

with a steady, driving

bash

at the floor torn torn

and open high

If

anyone had the idea

at the

beginning of 1963 that the Beatles

Want

to

were a

flash in the pan,

'I

think again. Released on 29


it

sold

when

1.5
it

Hold Your Hand' made them

November

(a

week

after

With the

Beatles),

million copies within six weeks in Great Britain alone, and

replaced 'She Loves You' at the top of the hit parade,

the Beatles' fourth

doing equally

number one

well. Please Please

record of the year.

Me topped the album

weeks, until With the Beatles replaced

it.

it

was

The albums were

According to

chart for thirty


a report in the

British trade publication Record Retailer, the group's record sales for

1963 totalled

some 6,250,000.

Their ascendancy was reflected outside the pop charts

On

9 October they were featured

in

The Mersey Sound, a

documentary about the Liverpool rock


four days before they recorded
Beatles

topped the

bill

'I

Want

scene.
to

on Sunday Night at

And on

13

as well.

television

October,

Hold Your Hand',


the

the

London Palladium,

seen by an estimated fifteen million television viewers.

It

was

after

Beatlemania

'The Beatles?

England 1963

in

thought they

were wonderful

who

doesn't?' asked the


film

and cabaret

Marlene

appeared on

the

German

bill

as the Beatles at the Royal


Variety

Show

in

performance, with

On 4 November,

its

accompanying screams from the audience,

on what

Beatlemania went upmarket

played in the Royal

who
same

this

that the British press began reporting

star

Dietrich,

73

Command Variety

it

called Beatlemania.

when

Performance

the Beatles
at the Prince

of Wales Theatre in London. Their contribution was a

fairly sedate

performance of four not particularly sedate songs, 'From

Me

to You',

1963.

'She Loves You',


the

last,

Lennon

'Till

There Was You' and 'Twist and Shout'. Before

delivered his oft-quoted introduction,

people in the cheaper seats clap your hands?


you'll just rattle

And

their pages with pictures

and

stories.

And

Beatles, filling

manufacturers of trinkets

Beatle wigs, handbags, buttons and even wallpaper

the

phenomenon.

critic,

William

if

your jewelry'

Newspapers and magazines went wild over the

'Would the

the rest of you,

Yet

Mann

amid

all

- cashed

in

on

the madness, one serious, respected

of The Times of London, published an end-of-

74

By

The Beatles

late

1963 a merchand-

ising principle

had evolved:

put the Beatles'

names

or

likenesses on trinkets of

all

kinds - clothing, glasses,


jewelry, pins, posters, wall-

paper, ice cream wrappers,


toys, dolls, wigs,

and

hundreds of other items

and people

will

buy them.

The ephemera shown here

now

premium prices

sells for

at collectors'

conventions

around the world.

year review that argued that there was

head-shaking, screaming

found most
a

music

fascinating,

girls

more

to Beatlemania than

and pop culture ephemera. What he

he wrote on 27 December, was the music. In

theorist's rhapsody,

Mann

celebrated

what he heard

as

pandi-

atonic clusters in 'This Boy', Mahleresque Aeolian cadences at the

end of 'Not

Second Time', and the major tonic sevenths and ninths

and flat-submediant key switches he heard

in several other songs.

musicologist Deryck Cooke, writing about the Beatles five years

poked fun
a

accurate).

what
With

their

first hits

tickled

what he

analysis

The

Mann

behind
it

at

harmonic

called

is

Beatles,

Mann's 'dovecot-fluttering', arguing that

misleading (but conceding that Mann's was

untutored

in

music theory, did not have a clue

was talking about, and did not particularly

them

The

later,

care,

although

to be taken so seriously.

them, and America and

A Hard Day's Night

ahead, the Beatles sang

3,000 members
British

They were making headway

just

for

of their

radio had adopted

Europe

as well,

them

outside England too. Australian

enthusiastically.

They were

taking off in

although television and radio recordings from their

fan club at the

Wimbledon

Palais,

London,

on 14 December 1963.

Scandinavian tour in October show that audiences there were considerably

more

sedate than those at

home. Their

greatest frustration,

Beatlemania

in

England 1963

75

76

The Beatles

though, was that until the


the

final

weeks of 1963, they had

American market. There had been some

failed to crack

television coverage,

mostly condescending, which presented the Beatles and their fans


the latest examples of British eccentricity. But Capitol Records,

American arm, had turned down each of their

And when EMI


labels,

singles

licensed the material to the smaller

they scarcely

made

a ripple

on the

charts.

and albums.

Swan and Vee

And

as

EMFs
Jay

so America, the

world's largest record market and the source of their early inspiration,

remained closed to them.

That was about

to change.

ft

o
ft"
(A

o
3

-Q

C
ft

>
3

"

O
4^
The

British newspapers were saying, well,

what's

left to do,

you've conquered everything,

and we'd say America. We got the Number


One, did Ed Sullivan. By then we'd distilled

our stuffdown
In

April

1964, only days

after finishing their


film,

A Hard

essence, so

we

weren't

first

Rediffusion television

Around

the Beatles.

They are shown here


performing a round-robin
version of the Isley Brother's
'Shout', a

an

Day's Night,

the Fab Four taped a

special,

to

coming on just as any old band.

song they never

recorded commercially.

Paul McCartney, 1980

78

The Beatles

The Beatles Conquer America 1964

In the rich

mythology that has sprung up around the

enough

events that were impressive

One myth

the retelling.

Beatles themselves,

they had a

started

in reality have

Beatles' story,

been magnified in

by Epstein and carried on by the

that the group refused to visit the

is

number one

USA until

record in the American charts. America had

been notoriously inhospitable to British pop singers and groups, and


as the story goes, the Beatles

were disinclined to cap their astonishing

British successes with failure in the

As

turned out,

it

'I

the top of the charts

Kennedy

Want

when

to

to bring

before

'I

Want

nearly two

them over were


to

on 7 February

its

1964. But the arrange-

finalized early in

Hold Your Hand' was

months before

American

riding

renamed

the Beatles arrived at the newly

International Airport

ments

USA.

Hold Your Hand' was indeed

November, weeks

released in Britain,

and

release in the last days

of December.

The

catalyst for the trip

concert promoter

Epstein and offered


at

him

a fledgling

New York

reading about Beatlemania in British

autumn of 1963, he

newspapers. In the

shows

was Sid Bernstein,

who had been

enterprisingly telephoned

nearly double the Beatles' usual fee for two

Carnegie Hall. Epstein accepted, and Bernstein booked

Carnegie Hall for afternoon and evening shows on 12 February.


Epstein, however, did not
for concerts.

in

to the

United States,

them

to travel

from

New

In

train.

those early days they

were amused and even a


little

to bring the Beatles to the

would have the national reach

Night at the London Palladium had


equivalent was the

February 1964, forced

York to Washington by

want

USA just

he wanted was an important television appear-

ance, something that

Opposite, inclement

weather during the Beatles'


first visit

What

Ed

in

England.

The

that

Sunday

nearest

Sullivan Show, an hour-long variety

show

CBS on Sunday evenings. As it turned out, Sullivan


knew about the Beatles. He had been at London Airport on

broadcast by
also
31

October,

when

mass of screaming fans greeted them on

their

return from Sweden.

surprised by the crush

of fans
arrivals

who

attended

their

and departures.

When

Epstein visited

New York

struck a bargain: the Beatles

in

November, he and Sullivan

would have top

billing

on three

The Beatles Conquer America 1964

79

80

The Beatles

consecutive shows, on

9, 16

perform

for a

fee.

Records,

who had

reduced

and

23

February 1964; but they would

Epstein also met with executives

reconsidered their

group's recordings.

They may

Epstein was hard to

resist:

still

details

have harboured doubts, but

and focusing on the most

of how that impression should be made, he

the inarguable track record of having turned a provincial


the British

pop music

Capitol

at

reluctance to issue the

urbane, polished, convinced that making

the right impression was everything,

minute

initial

now had

band

into

success story of the decade.

Sociologists searching for ways to explain the Beatles' impact at


this

time have made

much of a presumed

psychological need for non-

threatening, escapist entertainment in both Britain and the


1964. In Britain, a

government

USA

in

sex scandal involving the Secretary

of State for War, John Profumo, monopolized the headlines during


the

summer of 1963; and

make

his

mark

as

British journalist,

Rights

just as

John Le Carre was beginning

an author of cold war spy novels,

was revealed

as a Soviet spy. In the

movement was meeting


what

it

was getting

into.

With the Beatles was released


lar

young

promised

The major

political

scandal

involving a Cabinet Minister,

John Profumo

[right)

and

his

relationship to a call-girl,
Christine Keeler (above)

1963 did much

to

in

undermine

the authority of the British

establishment and promote


attitudes that

began

popular music

to reflect.

And on

in Britain

to

22

USA,

the Civil

The

Vietnam without much of

November

1963

-John E Kennedy,

President, was assassinated, abruptly ending


to be a rejuvenation

to

Philby, a

violent resistance in the South.

American government was sending aid


a clue

Kim

of American

politics.

the day

the popu-

what had

The Beatles Conquer America 1964

A moment

that

According to the psychological-need theory,

shocked and

stunned the United States:

81

duced

aided by a Secret Service

the four
agent

in

seconds

young moptops and

this

all

bad news pro-

happy obsession, and the story of

a craving for a lightweight,

their

screaming teenage fans

fitted the

the tense confused


after

Kennedy
Dallas on

is

John

bill perfectly. Yet,

F.

assassinated

in

22 November

the need for diversion cannot seriously be advanced

Conditions, after

as a factor in the Beatles' success.

improved greatly since

1963.

all,

have not

War, government corruption,

racial

1963, Jacqueline Kennedy

escapes from the limousine.

injustice, inner-city violence, financial disarray

disasters

and environmental

have continued to dominate the news;

lay at the heart of Beatlemania,

and 1980s produced nothing

why

if a

need

for diversion

have the equally troubled 1970s

like the hysteria that

attended the

Beatles' early years?

That

said, there

is

teenagers of the time,


ial

style a clear

teachers.

The

no denying the

who saw

Beatles' extramusical appeal to

in their musical, sartorial

and tonsor-

break from the expectations of their parents and

Beatles were

something of their own, and the pudding-

basin haircuts in particular, though pixieish by today's standards,

seemed scandalous

in

1964 and

made

for comparatively harmless

intergenerational friction.

More

crucially, they revitalized

reached one
Elvis

its

had been

like Steve

periodic troughs.
largely banished

popular music

at a

By 1963 the overt

time

when

it

sexuality of early

from mainstream pop. Crooners

Lawrence (with 'Go Away

Little Girl')

and Bobby Vinton

82

The Beatles

(with 'Blue Velvet' and 'There I've Said

Broadway show tunes

Again') topped the charts.

it

registered, as did novelties along the lines

still

of the Singing Nun's 'Dominique', which was the number one record

USA for

in the

most of December

1963.

There were signs suggesting that


come. The Four Seasons,

harmonies and the soaring


were a

fairly

number one
'It's

falsetto

hits in 1963.

My Party'),

sound

that thrived

of its lead singer, Frankie

The Chiffons and

hot chart group.

would be wel-

a revival of rock

group with

Stevie

There was teenage angst

'My

sassiness (in the Angels'

even some early surf music from Jan and

on vocal
Valli,

Wonder had

(in Lesley Gore's

and

Boyfriend's Back')

Dean and

the Beach Boys

in the hit parade.

There was
Baez, Phil

growing alternative audience. Bob Dylan, Joan

also a

Ochs and an army of acoustic

guitar-wielding folk-singers

were setting socially-conscious poetry to simple, folkish melodies, and


were playing to college students and sophisticates.

And

that appealed to the Beatles in their formative years

rhythm and

blues, soul

USA, although

- had

the style was

the genres

- Motown,

predominantly black audience

propel occasional records into the upper reaches of the charts.


Beatles

would help make both

they played

Chuck

these genres

Berry, Little Richard

expressed their preferences in interviews,

who were

either too

not interested

young

at the time,

more mainstream.

young white record buyers

to have heard the originals or

who were

suddenly had reason to investigate them.

visited the Beatles

later in 1964,

when

during their second North American

'I

can't hide', in

'I

Want

to

was amazed that the Beatles got

pop

When

His attraction was based on a misunderstanding: he thought the

tour.
line

to

The

and Motown songs, and

Connections with the folk camp were forged

Bob Dylan

in the

making enough crossover headway

charts.

The

this

'I

get high',

and

apparent drug reference into the

Beatles were not complete innocents in the drug

culture, having lived

never

Hold Your Hand' was

on amphetamines

smoked marijuana

in

Hamburg. But they had

until Dylan's visit.

and take between the Beatles and Dylan

There was

as well.

Lennon was including Dylan-like harmonica


was thinking more

carefully

about the

a musical give

By the end of 1964,

figures in his songs

and

literary merit of his lyrics.

Dylan's approach was suddenly accessible to

pop

fans

who had been

The Beatles Conquer America 1964

83

captivated by the

First

Beatles because he thought

they were singing


high'

in

Want

'I

to

'I

get

Hold

Your Hand' (the actual


line

is

'I

can't hide), the

American folksinger Bob


Dylan gave the foursome
its first

taste of marijuana,

influenced Lennon's

approach

and was

to lyric writing,

himself

influenced by the Beatles


to switch

from acoustic

to

electric instruments.

him

disinclined to follow

directly,

and

in 1965

he met them more

than halfway, abandoning his folk guitar for an electric rock band.
It

was almost by accident that

'I

Want

to

Hold Your Hand' was

USA late

injected into the confused musical milieu of the

much

same way

the

as the Beatles

listening to the records

James, a Washington
stewardess to bring
that

'I

Want

December

to

brought back to Liverpool by

DC disk jockey,

him some

British

had asked

When James

It

Carroll

sailors,

a British

pop music.

Hold Your Hand' was

1963.

in 1963. In

kept tabs on American music by

Airways

was only natural

in the stack she gave

played the record on the

air,

him

in

the

response was tremendous.

Capitol reconfigured the single, replacing the British B-side,


'This Boy', with the

album, Meet the

American
With the

Hand'

in

much

Beatles,

earlier

single, plus 'This Boy'

Beatles.

'I

Saw Her Standing

was assembled, using both

and nine of the fourteen

Capitol had planned to issue

mid-January and the album

appearances. But by

There'.

mid-December

'I

An

sides of the

Want

to

tracks

on

Hold Your

just before the Sullivan

disk jockeys around the country

were playing advance copies, and Swan and Veejay, sensing that their
investments

in the Beatles' early

reissued their versions. Capitol

recordings might at

moved

legally against

Jay, reacquiring its rights to the early material

moved up

its

own

release dates.

it

had

last

pay

off,

Swan and Vee


rejected,

and

84

The Beatles

In

the calm before the

storm, the Beatles take a

break after setting up

for

a London performance
the spring of

As the ground was being prepared

for

Beatles turned their attention to Paris,

shared a

Lopez.

bill at

the

to.

more than

word

that

'I

USA,

the

Sylvie Vartan

and Trini

reserved than the Beatles

But there were compensations.

in Paris, they received

number one on

in the

where for eighteen days they

Olympia Theatre with

The French audience was more

were then used

them

in

1964

Want

to

On

day

their first

Hold Your Hand' was

the weekly chart published by Cashbox, having sold

a million copies in only

two weeks. Meanwhile they were

thinking about another project that was quietly getting underway.

Film executives
tial

at

in late 1963,

United Artists had noted the

and approached Epstein with

plan was to exploit the Beatles' fame

with

a quick, inexpensive,

Beatles' sales poten-

a contract offer.

to their

Their

mutual benefit -

black-and-white film, specifically for the

British market.

The pop

exploitation film has long been a dead form, but in

the early 1960s there was a natural symbiosis between

and

film. Elvis

had been cranking out movies

England Cliff Richard followed

and other

early rockers

suit.

had made

Chuck

at least

pop music

like sausages,

and

in

Berry, Little Richard

cameo appearances

in films

85

The Beatles Conquer America 1964

for the teen market;

Around

and of course,

Haley's performance of 'Rock

Bill

the Clock' in Blackboard Jungle was a clarion

call in

the early

days of rock. Plot lines and acting ability were not great concerns; the

main thing was


United

that the soundtrack be peppered with potential hits.

Artists' principal interest, in fact,

was

less in

the film itself

than in the rights to a soundtrack album.

Not long

after the deal

was signed, however,

it

began to dawn on

United Artists that perhaps the Beatles might yield something better

who

than the standard pop film.

And

the Beatles,

own commercial

ideas

about the film

clout,

did not want to be


Lester, the

had

made

to look foolish.

young American

were feeling their

expatriate director

Mainly, they

as well.

That was

fine

with Dick

who was

hired for

the project.
Lester was ideal for the Beatles: he

had directed Peter

Sellers in

The Running, Jumping and Standing Still Film,

featurette starring Peter Sellers, Spike Milligan

and Leo McKern.

The

Beatles loved

handle their

it; its

offbeat

own humour. The

comedy suggested

but complementary personalities

trapped by their success.


writer

Alun

Owen

was hired

by following the Beatles

and when Lester

And

that Lester could

and Lester agreed

Beatles

approach would be to show the group


tinct

manic eleven-minute

as

what

it

was: a

that the best

band of dis-

who were both buoyed and

at the Beatles' insistance, the

Liverpool

to write the script, gathering his material

briefly.

He completed

visited the Beatles in Paris,

his

work by January,

he brought a draft

with him.
Besides looking over the script, the Beatles were committed to

some recording

in Paris. Electrola,

insisted that the Beatles

sang in German.

The

Loves You' and

Want

'Sie liebt dich'

'I

EMI's West German arm, had

would not be

not keen on the idea.

to

and

A livid

They agreed only

make

reluctantly,

at the

hits,

'She

lyrics, as

at their hotel a

the recordings.

so efficiently that in addition to the

and then

in a test

Pathe Marconi studio,

when he telephoned

Martin arrived

insisted that they

worked

unless they

Hold Your Hand', with German

to take Martin's call

they were.

Germany

and 'Komm, gib mir deine Hand.' The Beatles were

of wills, they decided not to show up

and not

a hit in

plan was to record their two biggest

to find out

where

few minutes

later,

Once

in the studio, they

German

recordings, they

86

The Beatles

taped the basic tracks for their next single


tion to their film soundtrack

The

Buy

'Can't

- and

Me

their first contribu-

Love'.

song, by McCartney, was not remarkable:

standard blues progression,


its

its

mildly bluesy melody and a minor key bridge.

conceivably have been a response to the words

The

was

all

very well, but

as the royalty

idealistic

buy me

The

money was

cheques were pouring

sentiment,

'I

Now, even

for

money, money

more

can't

love'.

session tapes

increasingly typical,

show

working method that would become

which

that the Beatles began taping the song

is

without having worked up

a finished

seemed intent on highlighting the


using a

(but did

McCartney proposed

much

don't care too

could

There,

Beatles.

the thing to have.

in,

offsetting

lyrics

Lennon sang

not write) in 'Money, the closing track of With the


love

verses are set to a

bouncy arrangement

bright,

its

call

arrangement. At

and response approach. In the

and Harrison responded


repetitions of the lyrics.

they

first,

song's blues character, partly


first

two

by

Lennon

takes,

McCartney's lead vocal with harmonized

to

And

through take three, Harrison punctu-

ated McCartney's vocal lines with a descending guitar figure in the


style

of Carl Perkins. There

McCartney,

after

is

an interesting touch in the second take.

botching the vocal, began scat singing

Ella Fitzgerald. Perhaps

he saw the

eventually recorded her

own

After three unsuccessful

in the style

of

possibilities in the song: Fitgerald

version.

tries,

they stopped to rethink the arrange-

ment. Lennon's and Harrison's responsive vocals and Harrison's guitar


punctuation were dropped, and the basic tracks were completed
a single take.

Still,

there

was work

to

be done.

early takes that Harrison hadn't figured out


left

open

bing,

for a guitar solo. That, along

was deferred

The

until a

Beatles spent only

London

what

was
to

clear

do

in

from the

in the verse

with some cosmetic overdub-

session just after the

two weeks

profound consequences, not only

It

in the

USA, but

for the Beatles

and

American

their

immediate

audience, but for the emerging international popular culture and


institutions, particularly the record business.

arrived in

New York

on 7 February,

From

trip.

the visit had

the

moment

until their departure

its

they

on

22 February, Epstein balanced their schedule so they seemed both

ubiquitous and scarce.

No

newspaper or magazine

go unremarked, and they were

all

let their

presence

over the airwaves. But Epstein

87

The Beatles Conquer America 1964

number of writers granted

limited the

And

charges.

personal audiences with his

although thousands of ticket-seekers had been turned

away from Carnegie Hall and the Ed Sullivan Show, he declined


shows

for extra concerts, including Sid Bernstein's proposal for

offers

at

Madison Square Garden.

The

Beatles'

they landed at

own manipulation

Kennedy

3,000 screaming fans.

American lounge

of the press began

moments

Airport, where they were greeted by

The entourage was ushered

to be quizzed

by

into the

a press corps that

after

some

Pan

was used to teen

fads

and did not expect much. But with snappy answers, wisecracks

and

ad-libs, the Beatles

turned what could have been a desultory

affair into great copy. Elvis Presley's press

ence: he even called reporters


that way.

there

Asked

sir

conferences were

to sing, they refused. Pressed

by

a reporter

was doubt that they could sing, Lennon said

money

first'.

Asked why

their

deadpanned, 'we don't know,

all

defer-

and ma'am. The Beatles were not

drily,

who

said

'we need

music excited teenagers, McCartney


really', to

which Lennon added,

'if

we

did we'd form another group and be managers.'

was continued

Musically, the agenda

American concert,
at

at the

But

their first

and even the openly

hostile.

already smitten, but of the undecided

The show was

million people, a record for the time.

American

televisions

reports that for that

were tuned

Sullivan,

now

free

one hour, crime

usual two.
Around

the Beatles,

of fans

was

sing

'We

in

of

sixty per cent

statistics

plummeted.

9 February was electrifying.

He

gave the Beatles a good deal more

most musical guests

A week later,

Miami Beach,

five songs, rather

then the

the Beatles followed Sullivan to the Deauville


Florida, this time playing six songs.

They

an

enlisted to

carry portraits and placards

and

Hotel

seen by seventy-three

of any doubt that he had a hit on his hands, rev-

elled in the sense of occasion.

screen time than

Some

and newspapers made much of

in,

The atmosphere of the show on

army

their first

appearance on Sullivan's show brought them

homes not only of the

into the

in

At

Carnegie Hall the next day, they were preaching largely to the con-

verted.

Following page, for a scene

proselytization.

Washington Coliseum on n February, and

Love You

were back

England by the time of their third contracted appear-

in

ance on 23 February, but

The

visit

left

Sullivan three songs

on

tape.

was extraordinarily well documented. Albert and

Beatles', a rewrite of the

adulatory

hit

from the

Bye Bye Birdie

film

David Maysles,
the Beatles in

young team

New

of

documentary filmmakers,

trailed

York and Washington, capturing both the

88

The Beatles

The Beatles Conquer America 1964

89

90

The Beatles

pandemonium
vate footage

that attended their public

movements, and more

from the eye of the hurricane,

pri-

their suites at the Plaza

Hotel. At the Washington Coliseum, a second crew filmed the thirty-

minute show
alas, is

for a closed-circuit theatre broadcast in

March. Missing,

documentation of the Carnegie Hall concerts. Surviving

correspondence and contracts show that Capitol intended to record

American Federation of

the performances. But objections from the

Musicians prevented the taping

at the last

cameras were not allowed inside

moment. The Maysles'

either: after the

Washington

seg-

ment, their footage skips to Florida.


Their documentary, What's Happening! The Beatles in the USA, was
re-edited in 1990,
U.S.

Visit.

original.

and

released

on videotape

as

The

This revised version includes a curiosity

Lennon,

sitting in his

with a toy instrument,

room

at the Plaza,

Beatles:
left

is

uncanny resemblance

First

out of the

shown playing

The chord

hybrid keyboard and harmonica.

progression he plays bears an

The

to the introduc-

tion of 'Strawberry Fields Forever', a song nearly three years, thou-

sands of touring miles and several

The

stylistic

Beatles' visit created a voracious

The Dave Clark

Five,

changes in his future.

market for British bands.

Herman's Hermits, the Rolling Stones, the

Animals, the Yardbirds, the Hollies, Freddie and the Dreamers, Gerry

and the Pacemakers and


a

welcome not

dozen others crossed the water and received

hitherto extended to British

Records suddenly found

itself in

pop groups. Capitol

the ideal position to both stoke the

fires

of Beatlemania and exploit the demand. While

new

material, Capitol Records could

Beatles recordings,

which

it

draw on

released in the

EMI

a backlog

awaited

of early

most parsimonious way,

on albums that generally had only eleven or twelve songs, compared


with the fourteen on British Beatles albums. Capitol also considered
songs released

as singles to

be

fair

game

for

album compilations,

something the Beatles themselves deliberately avoided. To the


chagrin, Capitol did not

buy

their notion that

albums and

Beatles'

singles

should be kept separate; nor did they regard the Beatles' albums
Opposite, McCartney tuning
the left-handed Hofner bass

integral statements.

related singles, yielded three


silver lining for

as

Thus, every two British Beatles albums, and

American

albums from Capitol. There was

fans.

To help Capitol pad out

its

a slight

releases,

instrument from the start


of the Beatles right
to the

end

through

^MI

sometimes supplied tracks from works-in-progress. Thus, on

hodgepodge

collections like

The Beatles Second Album, Beatles V7and

The Beatles Conquer America 1964

91

92

The Beatles

Yesterday
several

and

Today,

American fans

months before

Capitol's reconfiguration,

Hearts Club
Beatles

Band in

actually got to hear

new

material

their counterparts abroad. Nevertheless,

which persisted

until Sgt. Pepper's Lonely

1967, distorted the purposeful sequences the

and Martin had devised.

When EMI

transferred the Beatles

catalogue to compact disc in 1987, the British originals were adopted


as the global standard.

However much

the Beatles objected to Capitol's tampering with

their releases, they could take pride in

some

made

possible

freehanded policy. In April

1964,

when

by the American

label's

they had released only six singles in England, they held

no fewer than fourteen

places

on the Hot 100

by the American trade magazine Billboard.


three of the top four places

by

their

interesting statistics

own

on

Billboard's

reckoning, they had

singles chart published

And

in

album

made only

May

they held

chart, even

two.

though

Q
Q.

en

o
4^

They were rather war-weary during Beatles


For Sale.

One must remember that theyd been

battered like

mad throughout 1964, and much

ofip6j. Success
The Beatles

in

a portrait by

Astrid Kirchherr,
to

England

to

who came

photograph

them during the filming of

A Hard

Day's Night

spring of 1964.

in

the

is

a wonderful thing but

it is

very, very tiring.

George Martin,

198!

94

The Beatles

Hard Days For Sale 1964


Having broken the USA's
given a hero's

resistance to British pop, the Beatles

welcome upon

their return to

were

London on 22 February

1964. Airport interviews, spiced with footage of the huge, vocal

crowd

awaiting the group, were filmed for both television and for Pathe

News, which had already devoted

And

the Beatles.
visit,

sketches during a Big Night

25 February, they returned to the

'Can't

Buy

Do

Me

Now the
mates in

Brian Epstein, return to

England triumphant on

22 Februaryl964,
two weeks of

pandemonium

in

They had hoped


the bastion of

on

that

after

utter

America.
to

storm

pop music

first visit

to the

USA, and encountered


little

resistance.

American

Love' and record

Out television appearance.

Abbey Road

its

On

studios to finish off

companion, Lennon's bluesy 'You

That'.

whose Daily

The Beatles, followed by

of its theatrical newsreels to

returned immediately to work, performing and participating in

comedy

Can't

several

the group, energized by the success of its

Beatles
Hcftvl

stitches,

had more

irons in the fire than ever.

pseudo-newspapers used to keep

had continued writing

Lennon,

his school class-

pun-filled nonsense verse in

95

Hard Days For Sale 1964

Lennon's
of

collection

first

nonsense verse and

idiosyncratic drawings,
His

Own

published

March 1964;

in

the Beatles,

In

was

Write,

the velvet-

in

collared jackets they

sported during their winter

and spring 1964

tours,

help him promote

the style of

Edward Lear and Lewis

He

Joycean wordplay.

also

Carroll,

continued

and short prose

filling scraps of

full

human-

animal hybrids, and deformed fantasy creatures of all

sorts.

Beat,

and he occasionally read them

some of his

met with

unanimous

virtually

During
Mersey

stories in

to interviewers. In

published a seventy-nine-page collection, In His

of

paper with

peculiar line drawings of people with multiple heads,

the band's early years he had published

it.

Own

March, he

Write,

which

admiration on both sides of

critical

the Atlantic.

For the most part, the weeks following the American

trip

were

devoted to their filmM Hard Days Night. Lennon, in deconstructing


the Beatles

myth

years later,

too reductive. But

Owen

complained that Alun Owen's

did what was

licly.

Lennon was

he drew on the

and over-simplification

traits

was the

others.

cast as the rebellious, cutting wit.

slightly sulky last

Owen's

among

in

the Beatles projected pub-

McCartney was

the engaging, diplomatic cutie. Harrison was shy but cheeky.


Starr

was

demanded of him. Although

there was undoubtedly both exaggeration


his characterizations,

script

equals, the

comic

foil

And
for the

script follows the Beatles as they prepare for a televi-

sion appearance,

and

some grandfather

is

leavened by fictional devices: Paul's trouble-

tags along,

and Ringo

hours, imperiling the performance.

deserts the

group

Along the way, the

for a

few

Beatles run for

96

The Beatles

their lives to avoid being torn to pieces

by

their adoring fans,

and

chafe against being held prisoner by those charged with keeping

some of their newest

they also play

safe. Naturally,

them

songs.

Filming took seven and a half weeks, from 2 March to 24 April.

The band had

a respite

from concerts during

but they

this period;

taped several television and radio appearances, and there was work
to

be done on the soundtrack album, which would include both film

songs and

new

material not used in the film.

new songs

of the
record

all

in Paris,

and

as

it

the film songs except the

They had

written most

turned out, they managed to


title

composed

track (which was

near the end of filming) in the week between their return from the

USA and

their first

were recorded
early

day before the cameras. The non-film songs

later in the spring,

and when the

sessions

ended

in

June the Beatles had seventeen new songs, fourteen of them by

Lennon and McCartney.


Thirteen of the originals were included on the album of A Hard-

Days Night, the

first

The remaining

compositions.

written for Billy


covers

collection devoted entirely to the Beatles'

J.

original,

'I

Little Richard's

'Long Tall

Sally',

session's three

Carl Perkins' 'Matchbox'

and Larry Williams' 'Slow Down' on an extended play

Long

Tall Sally.

The A Hard Day's Night album

is

and assurance.

A transitional

trough would follow in

moment

there

single, called

unquestionably the

peak of the band's early period, a collection of songs

early 1965, but for the

had been

Call Your Name',

Kramer, and was included with the

own

full

of energy

1964 and

late

was no sign of the weariness that

could be heard on their Beatles For Sale and Help! albums.


'A

Hard Day's

film, begins

Night', the

title

track of both the

album and the

with a perfect attention-grabbing flourish, a

stark, bright-

edged, slightly dissonant guitar chord that lingers defiantly for a few

seconds before the song begins.

It

took several

chord, and the right coloration: they tried

more dissonant and


and Harrison

less,

settled

it

tries to

distorted

find the right

and

on an

intriguingly

ambiguous configuration.

Harrison, playing a twelve-string guitar, and

Lennon playing

string standard instrument, played different voicings of a

ded fourth chord played a

major with an added

D on his bass.

perfect for the gesture.

plain,

and even with tremolo. In the end, Lennon

The

bright,

C - while

open sound they

a six-

suspen-

McCartney

settled

on was

97

Hard Days For Sale 1964

The song posed

a compositional challenge for

McCartney. Until early April, the film had been


Beatles No. i or Beatlemania,

came up with

pending a better

Lennon and

called, variously,

title. It

Hard Day's Night, although

the titled

was

Starr

who

there are several

versions of how that happened. Lester has said that Starr tended to

come out with amusing malapropisms when he was drunk,

so they

simply waited for the right moment. Another version has

that Starr,

emerging from the studio

after a

hard day, and then noting that

long session, noted that

was dark, added

it

it

'it's

'night'.

been a

But

Starr

must have used the phrase well before the filming began, because

Lennon included

Write, published in

Whatever the

come up with

in 'Sad Michael',

it

one of the pieces

was

it

left to

Lennon and McCartney

and end the

to begin

McCartney turned up with the

film.

A day after Lester

process, such as

to,

at

Lennon and

and chords written on

Lennon wrote (and

was:

it

of long, hard days

home

lyrics

title,

good model of the Lennon-McCartney

to

song that would make prominent use of the phrase,

and the producer, Walter Shenson, approved the

It is

Own

March.

origin,

and could be used

book.

His

in In

sang) the verses,

work, made bearable by the

match-

collaborative

woman

which

tell

he comes

while McCartney contributed the bridge, a paean

to domestic bliss.

The

contrasts between these sections

show

certain

classic traits.

Lennon's verse melody


appears, at

first,

ear expects the


instead.

bluesy

melody

Lennon

cast,

to

lingers

closing line ('you

major; but in the third bar,

move up

on the

F,

to

an F sharp,

giving the

as the verse ends.

know

note, a flatted third,


to

mildly exotic, and slightly bluesy.

it

melody

hits

It

when

the

an F natural

a temporarily

but then restores the F sharp, both in the melody and the

accompanying chords,

ment

is

to be in plain

feel alright')

on the word

And

Lennon

'feel'.

as a final twist, in the

brings in a sultry blue

The minor key accompani-

McCartney's bridge melody gives

it

a bitter-sweet quality,

but McCartney ends the section with a burst of unequivocal joy - a


rising

melody

for the line, 'feeling

you holding me

tight, tight, yeah'.

Harrison's use of a twelve-string guitar gives the song an effervescent


quality, particularly in the arpeggiated fade-out

and

in a quirkily eleg-

ant solo (doubled by Martin on the piano) distinguished by a rolling


figure that

hammers home

that mixolydian F natural.

98

The Beatles

McCartney composed only

few of the album's songs, but

contributions are notably durable. Besides 'Cant


is

the tuneful, up-tempo 'Things

love affair so solid


ally

look back

was 'And

at the present in a

Love Her', the

We

and long-lasting

first

Buy

Me

his

Love', there

Said Today', which projects a

that the participants will eventu-

haze of loving nostalgia.

in a line

And

there

of gentle ballads, models of

symmetry and

directness, with lyrics that are sweetly poetic. Love,

here,

There

is

idyllic.

is,

in fact,

an appealing

which dictated an instrumental texture


There Was You' recording.

Starr,

fragility in the song,

similar to that of their 'Till

ordered away from his drums, was

given bongos and claves, and both

Lennon and Harrison

use nylon-

But

string guitars. In his solo, Harrison merely restates the melody.

during the

he provides

verses,

accompaniment

a lovely, arpeggiated

that plays nicely offLennon's straightforward

strumming.

Lennon's songs dominate the collection, and generally paint more


three-dimensional pictures than McCartney's. In

Known

Better', his

melody

ica-dominated texture; yet

is

bright

and

eager,

his lyrics suggest

'I

Should Have

and so

some

is

his

harmon-

reluctance about

blossom into something grander. The object of his

letting a flirtation

attentions, in fact,

sounds frustratingly dim:

And when

tell

you

me too.
And when I ask you to be mine, you're gonna say you love me too.'
Lennon urges her on: 'If this is love you've got to give me more, give
me more, hey, hey, hey, give me more.' But when the bridge comes
that

love you,'

Lennon

sings, 'you're

around again, her response


In 'If

Fell'

a decidedly

more

is

just the

gonna say you

same

gorgeous ballad in the

love

as the first time.

style

of 'This Boy', but with

sophisticated chord progression and sleeker vocal

harmonies - Lennon describes a delicate situation


tagonist has a girlfriend, but
to proceed, partly because

is

in

attracted to another.

which the pro-

He

he does not want to cause

is

disinclined

his current girl-

friend pain, but mainly because he wants an assurance that the


relationship will be an

'When

Get Home,'

for a reunion

new

improvement on the old one.


a soul-tinged rocker, has the singer impatient

with his sweetheart - yet there

is

also a faint undercur-

rent of extracurricular activity in the lyrics. 'I've got

no business

being here with you,' he sings, and after a telling pause he adds,
way.' In

Any Time

not that, than

as a

at All',

Lennon

'this

offers his services as a lover, or

shoulder to cry on.

And

if

since Harrison had not

99

Hard Days For Sale 1964

scene from

Night which,

A Hard Day's
like

the rest

produced

follow-up to 'Don't Bother Me', Lennon gave

Happy Just

to

cousin to

Want

of the movie, offered a

reasonably

realistic

view of

the Beatles' lives on tour.


this

scene they are stuck

a hotel room, set to the task


of

answering fan

edge. 'Tell

him

'I'm

You', an attractive but inconsequential

Hold Your Hand'.

to

These were Lennon's cheerier love songs. Others had

In
in

'I

Dance With

Me Why',

for example,

cusation and grovelling beneath

its

is

a peculiar

a rougher

combination of ac-

ebullient surface.

The

first

thing

mail.

we

learn

is

that the

woman

the song

him badly and

singer, treated

magnificently pressured voice

something that
that

is

being sung to has lied to the

him. His response, sung

Lennon used on

done,

tell

rockers,

me what and

I'll

is:

in the
'If

it's

As

apologize.'

obviously insufficient, he begs and pleads on bended knee,

until finally,

thoroughly emasculated, he sings

there anything
In

I've said or

left

is

'I'll

Cry

is

'Is

can do?'

Instead',

stances are similar

angry and

a line in falsetto:

he

is

not so accommodating.

his girlfriend has leh

him - but

The circumthis

time he

is

plotting indirect retaliation. Specifically, he intends to

break the hearts of other

women. Or

at least, so

he threatens.

When

The

100

it

comes down

moment

is

cry.

to

it,

For

as pathetic as the

he confesses that

all its

one

macho

in 'Tell

Another warning song

all

he can manage to do for the

posturing, the

in this collection

is

a burst of jealousy in a modified blues form.


if his

on,

woman

it is

continues to

not only the

of being ridiculed
music:
lines

Lennon

wronged

lover here

is

Me Why'.

he

flirt,

Do

That',
that

will leave her. In fact, the lyric goes

flirtation that irritates

The

as a cuckold.

'You Can't

Lennon here warns

him, but the thought

exasperation

plays the lead guitar solo,

is

captured in the

and instead of the smooth

Harrison favoured, he came up with a constricted, sputtering

sequence of bent notes and rapid-fire seventh chords - a concise


expression of pure rage.

One more Lennon


posturing of 'You

Be Back'

is

song,

Cant Do

'I'll

Be

That',

Back', closes the album. After the

which immediately precedes

a bitter-sweet admission that threats of

actually meaningless. Singing in close

it, 'I'll

abandonment

harmony with McCartney,

are

to a

lush backing of acoustic guitars and a simple, lightly syncopated bassline,

he not only admits that

if

he

leaves,

he

will

be back, but also

confides that there has already been a pattern of punitive but clearly
ineffective departures.

Richard Lester, centre,


explains

his

requirements

to

a small army of film and

sound technicians as he
prepares

to film the

performance of

'If

group's
Fell'. All

the Beatles are

assembled

except Lennon,

who was

off

getting the acoustic guitar

he used

in this

sequence.

But rather than begging,

as in 'Tell

&*"*

Me Why',

101

Hard Days For Sale 1964

he

touch of sarcasm: 'You could find better things to do than

offers a

to break

my heart

again.'

All told, the Beatles continued to function as a self-contained unit

on A Hard Day's

The

Night, but their sense of texture continued to evolve.

fascination with double-tracked vocals, evident

Beatles,

percussion battery.

The main

inent in the bridge of 'A


Can't

Do That'

The

on With

the

continued here. So did the group's interest in expanding the

and

'I

addition to this was the cowbell, prom-

Hard Day's Night' and throughout 'You

Call Your Name'.

piano, played by both Martin and McCartney, had an in-

creased

if

listeners

subtle role. Often

tended to sense

it

was buried so deep

it

without quite hearing

used to play single, unharmonized

appearance in

Any Time

at All'

is

lines, as if

it

in the texture that


it;

and often

were an oboe.

a case in point.

A series

it

was

Its

of descend-

ing whole notes, played in the bass register under the frothy guitar

chords of the verses, creates a peculiar resonance. But


that there

is

a piano in the

mix when

it

it is

only clear

joins Harrison's twelve-string

guitar in the brief instrumental solo section.

The

electric twelve-string guitar also

adds significantly to

this

album's distinctive coloration, and was something rock bands

elsewhere immediately adopted.


California,

added

Most

notably, the Byrds, based in

they came to prominence early in 1965,

it

was with Beatlesque

arrangements of early Dylan songs. The Byrds'


later

changed

more

his

and when

a twelve-string guitar to their arsenal,

name

to Roger)

guitarist,

McGuinn, used

aggressively than Harrison did,

Jim (who

the instrument

making bright-toned

arpeggia-

tions the centrepieces of his arrangements. Harrison, clearly influ-

enced by McGuinn, adopted that approach for

Someone'

his

own

'If

Needed

in 1965.

A Hard Day's Night also

pointed up the efficiency with which the

group had absorbed the various rock, rhythm and blues and country
styles in

which they had performed

ease with

which they applied

Harrison's lead guitar line,

would have sounded

Owens

in their early years,

moves

to their

which ambles through

entirely at

home on

to the guitarists

who backed

and James Brown. The

own

'I'll

and the
material.

Cry

a Carl Perkins or

record, just as Lennon's lead in 'You Can't

something
Pickett

classic

Do

Instead',

Buck

That'

owed

the soul singers Wilson

Beatles' real

achievement here,

as in

Tk

102

Lennon warms up during a


chat with Harrison

backstage

at the

Theatre

London as the

in

Scala

Beatles wait to film one of


the performance sequences
in

A Hard

Day's Night.

Ringed by policemen whose


duty

it

was

teenage

to prevent

girls

from hurling

themselves at the group


during performances, the
Beatles play a concert

during their

first fully

fledged North American


tour

in

the

summer

of

1964.

103

Hard Days For Sale 1964

most of their songs from 'Love

Me

Do' on,

is

way they wove

in the

own melodic and harmonic gifts,


their own. And although perceptible

these influences, along with their

was identifiably

into a style that


links can be

found between the worlds of Please Please Me andyl Hard

Days Night,

far

Beatles have

moved

more

striking

is

the considerable degree to which the

forward.

After they had finished filming A

Hard Day's

Night, the Beatles

played a handful of British concerts, recorded some television and


radio performances,

and took

a brief holiday,

reconvening on

for the three days of recording required to finish the

Long

Two

Tall Sally EP.

stage in

days after the sessions ended they were on

Copenhagen, the

first

ceeded to the Netherlands,

stop in a twenty-six-day tour that pro-

Hong Kong,

Australia

For part of the tour, Starr was sidelined with


a studio

drummer named Jimmy

Their schedule would not

A Hard Day's Night,


work on

11

let

Nicol

up

all

and

New

Zealand.

tonsillitis; until 15

filled in for

summer. July saw more

and attendant radio and

their next

album, which

They had time

EMI

wanted

for only

they started work on four songs) before

month-long tour of the

Though

USA and

was not yet

it

British

television appearances.

August, they returned to the Abbey Road studios to

for the holidays.

June,

him.

tumultuous London and Liverpool openings of

concerts, as well as

And on

June

album and the

two

it

in the

sessions (during

was time

start

shops in time

which

to leave for a

Canada.

clear to the Beatles, concerts

were already

were living a

irrelevant to their creative process. In fact, they

triple

life,

musically: in the recording studio they bolted forward, perfecting

new

songs and experimenting with

new sounds and

textures.

BBC's studios they glanced backwards, reviving songs

At the

that they

had

not performed on stage since 1962 and were apparently uninterested


in

bringing to

Abbey Road. But

water, playing the


Following page,

madness

all

the

the Beatles

the set

list

meant

had

Beatles never
witnessed

until

then

was

eclipsed by the scene

thousands of fans
the

Town

came

that there

performed on

was

to

than teen

idols. Early

their fans to

stage.

frustrating for four musicians

in

Melbourne, Australia, where

in concert they

same dozen songs show

after

were merely treading


show.

The

rigidity

of

growing catalogue of songs that the

The

concerts were also increasingly

who thought

of themselves

as

more

on, they had told interviewers that they liked

scream during their performances, and indeed, they

Hall to catch a

But

glimpse of the Fab Four

were disappointed by the

waving from a balcony.

the venues grew larger, from theatres to concert halls to stadiums,

restraint

of their

first

Paris concerts.

as

Hard Days For Sale 1964

YtrritfiM

105

106

The Beatles

the

volume of the screaming

killed

any

of the Beatles

possibility

being heard.

found themselves the focus of unfathom-

Offstage, too, the Beatles

able madness. In Australia, crowds estimated at between 250,000

and 300,000 gathered outside

hoping

their hotel,

for

nothing more

than a glimpse. Security concerns meant that they were confined to


their hotels

rooms between shows. And although they continued

project an image of innocence, their backstage


orgy.

Lennon, looking back

life

was

parade of backstage

at the endless

on

groupies, said in 1970 that the Beatles 'were like Satyricon

The

on

press did not report

this aspect

young

girls

of touring

made

the relatively few cases where local police

life,

tour'.

except in

a point of dragging

out of the Beatles' hotel rooms. Yet the constant presence

of reporters contributed to the feeling that they were living in a


bowl.

to

non-stop

Lennon found himself regularly denying

Cynthia had

McCartney

split up.

was about to marry

his

reports that he

regularly denied

rumours

fish-

and

that he

longtime flame, the actress Jane Asher. Similar

fascination attended Starr's courtship of a Liverpool hairdresser,

Maureen Cox, and


he met on the

The

set

Harrison's

romance with

Pattie

Boyd, an actress

of A Hard Day's Night.

evidence that

all

this

was taking

its toll

can be heard on the

group's fourth album, Beatles For Sale, a collection that sounds dark

and autumnal
before the

after the radiant

North American

energy of A

Hard Day's Night.

tour, the sessions

resumed

Started

in late

September, but were again interrupted for concerts in Britain.


final sessions, in

good craftsmen and knowing the


a

few rosy love songs,

Thing', both

like 'Eight

taste

Days

Lennon-McCartney

dominate the record


self-pity.

are

of their market, they included


a

Week' and 'Every

about disconnection, self-doubt and even

Mostly they are Lennon's. Having turned twenty-four during

examination and he was not happy with


all,

Little

collaborations. But the songs that

the recording of the album, he seems to have

In

The

October, were sandwiched between concerts. Being

begun

a process

of self

his findings.

they recorded seventeen songs, ten originals, seven covers.

For the fourteen songs included on the album, they reverted to the
balance of eight originals and six covers that had worked on Please
Please
'I

Me and

Feel Fine'

With the

- notable

Beatles.

for

its

Two more

originals,

Lennon's

controlled use of guitar feedback as an

107

Hard Days For Sale 1964

introduction

That

single.

My

- and McCartney's
left

one recording,

'She's a

Woman', were

released as a

of Little Willie John's 'Leave

a cover

Kitten Alone', sung with stunning power by Lennon, unaccount-

ably not released.

Contrasting the Beatles For Sale sessions with the burst of creativity
that yielded the all-original

A Hard Days Night,

regard the group's revival of

covers as a sign of fatigue. Indeed,

it

it is

Feelgood's
that

in the

not to

repertory of

often seems the cover versions

that bring a measure of energy to the record: For

and Roll Music' and

difficult

Hamburg

Liverpool and

its

Chuck

'Mr Moonlight', Lennon revived the

'Rock

Berry's

unaccompanied vocal introduction

Dr

to

aggressive blues shout

had enlivened 'Twist and Shout'. McCartney does not quite

recapture the electricity of 'Long Tall Sally' in his cover of another

Richard favourite, 'Kansas City/Hey

Little

track

is

not without vocal fireworks.

'Everybody's Trying to Be

My

And

Hey Hey

a pair

Hey', but the

of Carl Perkins tunes,

Baby' and 'Honey Don't', give

Harrison and Starr their customary solo spots.

The

covers do, however,

thematic way.
roll

The new

complement the

originals in an almost

songs are a tug of war between the rock and

and

leanings of the previous albums, and newly emerging country

folk influences.
in a sense, the

There had been

a hint

of this on A Hard Day's Night.

expanded use of acoustic

guitars, the wistful

'I'll

Be Back' and the country roots of 'I'll Cry Instead'

of a

style

standing

change.

Now that tendency is

as icons at

Chuck

each pole:

mood

of

are harbingers

formalized, with the covers

Berry, Little Richard

and Dr

Feelgood hold the fort for rock; the Carl Perkins numbers argue the
case for rockabilly,

and Buddy Holly's 'Words of Love', kitted out

in

Everly Brothers' style harmonies, holds the middle ground.

The

originals,

creativity.

of course, are the key to the state of the Beatles

Harrison, anxious as he was to compete with

McCartney

as a songwriter, nevertheless arrived

Lennon and

empty-handed

although he did record a demonstration tape of a song called

Know What

which seems not

to Do',

to have

again,

'You'll

won encouragement

from Lennon and McCartney.


McCartney,
songs,

too,

was having

and one of them -

Quarry

Men

days.

It

'I'll

a dry spell.

He

contributed only three

Follow the Sun' - dates back to the

had evolved, however. Originally

slightly vaudevillian song, here

it is

a hill-fledged

a bouncy,

country and western

The Beatles

108

Beatlemania as viewed from


the stage

in

1964

- or at

least as re-created for

Richard Lester's cameras


the closing concert
of

ballad.

One

A Hard Day's

Night.

can almost hear the clip-clop of horse hooves in the

strumming and

acoustic guitar

McCartney replaced the

light percussion

accompaniment.

original cliched bridge section with a

plangent minor key melody, harmonized with Lennon.


peculiar song, so self-possessed as to be egomaniacal.
all, is

in

sequence

abandoning

cheerfully

no excuse except

that

it's

his love,

Still, it is

The

And

more
a

singer, after

with no stated provocation, and

time to go.

McCartney's 'What You're Doing'' was uncharacteristic and almost

Lennonesque,

on the

as

though McCartney wanted

relationship

Lennon had described

to offer his

in 'Tell

own

Me Why'.

Lennon's song, the protagonist accuses his girlfriend of lying


causing

him

grief,

twelve-string guitar

riff

song' was not entirely


'I

uses a central riff

gression

Ride'

that runs through

new

much

is

for the Beatles: 'You Can't

Do

Feel Fine', the single recorded at these

more ambitiously, having

it

The

'riff

That' used a

same

sessions,

follow the chord pro-

Tripper', in 1965, but generally, this

the Beatles rarely, used.

a repeating

of the song.

around the fretboard. There would be sequels

and 'Day

in

and

but instead of begging her to reform, or threaten-

ing to leave, he hectors her. Musically, the song's heart

similar device.

take

As

in 'Ticket to

was an approach

109

Hard Days For Sale 1964

McCartney's other new offering,

and

lyrically slight

catchy, danceable

of 'I Feel

Fine'.

- and

and diverting enough

At

heart,

except that the verse

and

its

bridge

after the

is

it is

built

is

Woman', though musically

to rate

a series of unresolving seventh chords,

and McCartney did not bother

The Lennon-McCartney
a

- was

a straightforward blues progression,

on

BBC

interview soon

Lennon offhandedly described

released,

moments. 'Eight Days

in the studio

position as the B-side

its

a short minor-key excursion. In a

song was

'rubbishy'

'She's a

some degree improvised

to

the lyrics as

to argue.

collaborations afford

some

interesting

new

twist:

an alluringly

Week' begins with

harmonized fade-in introduction. Harrison and Lennon play an


ascending chord progression in which the
left

open and allowed

embellishes his progression slightly, while

with a D, in rapid-fire repeating

on

guitar's

top

string

is

to ring out over each of the chords. Harrison

in this short figure that

McCartney's D's and the

McCartney underpins

There

triplets.

is

so

it

much going

one hardly notices the clash between

open

guitars'

E's.

All that registers

is

the

changing tension of the progression.

The song proper

something of a

is

untroubled popsiness.
sive desire.

And

which

progression,

the ringing

its

E's,

Its lyric is

verse

stylistic

melody winds

gracefully

walking bass

The

in spirit

from 'From

Me To You'

melodic

momentum

stops, replaced

me, love me'), harmonized

and

McCartney harmonize

verses

is

in a figure lifted

The

by Lennon and McCartney,

and

from the days of 'Love

'Every Little Thing', though

end

'Please Mister Postman'.

by two-syllable bursts ('hold

in thirds

in fourths

without

line replacing the quickly

and punctuated with handclapping. And

manship,

around the chord

identical to that of the opening, but

is

and with

repeated notes of the introduction.

Beatles touch

throwback, a burst of

simply a declaration of near-obses-

little

in the

fifths,

Me

chorus Lennon and

reprising a quintessential

Do'.

more than an

exercise in crafts-

notable for a minor textural refinement: Starr touches up

the chorus with a timpani, interposing a two-note burst between the


lines 'Every little thing she does'

But

if

the

Lennon was reaching


now,

his

and

McCartney songs and

songs were

for

fairly

'she

does for me'.

the collaborations were thin,

something new

in his songwriting. Until

straightforward declarations: you

hurt, I'm going to leave you.

But

in

'No

lied,

I'm

Reply', as in 'You Can't

Do

The Beatles

10

That', he sings about jealousy, but provides a narrative structure,

painting a picture of a spurned lover


girlfriend after she refuses to see

Lennon's melody,
is

an

when

who

him

begins spying on his

or take his telephone

attractive, plaintive tune.

But

he sings twice for emphasis before reporting:

me,

'cos

higher:

'I

looked up to see your


nearly died,

with another

man

in

retribution, switches

forgiveness

Lennon

The

face.'

nearly died, 'cos

my place.'

his

He

that

you walked hand

on

matched

light,'

you saw

in

hand

offers

a reconciliation.
in 'Baby's In Black', a

Here the object of his

desire

the point of wearing black.

else, to

to the text: even before the plaintive

begins, Harrison opens the song with a solo guitar

on

saw the

'I

next time, the stakes are

condensed narrative form

also uses a

well

know

back to the brightness of C major and

predicated, of course,

pining fruitlessly for someone


is

'I

with

from

crashes

Yet the bridge, rather than promising

peculiar lament in three-quarter time.

music

A minor,

major into

harmony from McCartney and cymbal

tone changes from observational to pained.

Starr, the

contact,

his discoveries are presented as

old-fashioned melodrama. Shifting from


a supporting

calls.

make

describing his attempts to

fill,

is

The

melody

leaning heavily

tremolo bar to give the notes a twisted, slightly sour edge.

uses the

same technique

rubbery guitar

and he

a wonderfully

generic expressions of emotion to picturesque

was an important step

thing he chose to develop on


narrative

up the song with

solo.

The move from


storytelling

to spice

its

was one thing; spinning

later said that

it

for

own

made him

Lennon, but

it

was not some-

terms. Shrouding his feelings in

entirely fictional tales

uneasy.

He

was another,

retained the option of

returning to the raw expressivity of his earlier songs, while also heading toward a combination of abstract imagery and social

McCartney,
oping an

in time,

would

far surpass

ability to spin entirely

ample, Hollywood

starlets

him

as a

comment.

weaver of tales, devel-

impersonal fantasies about, for ex-

('Honey

Pie'),

gunslingers of the American

West ('Rocky Racoon') and even sociopathic medical students


('Maxwell's Silver
Opposite, Lennon walks

off

The
For

Hammer').

use of narrative was not Lennon's only innovation

Sale.

Perhaps more crucial

is

on

Beatles

the self-analysis of 'I'm a Loser'.

Its

Night with a souvenir, the


personalized seatback from
his

dressing room.

closest predecessor

that

among

Lennon's songs

was merely about escaping pain. 'I'm

is

'There's a Place', but

a Loser'

is

more

revealing,

Hard Days For Sale 1964

111

112

The Beatles

despite Lennon's attempt to disguise


a

its

autobiographical aspect in

country texture, complete with Harrison's Perkins-style guitar

turing.

The second

clown, beneath this

which

verse

mask

is
I

telling:

am

declares: 'I'm a loser,

'Although

laugh and

wearing a frown',

and I'm not what

as

is

tex-

act like a

the chorus,

appear to

be.'

Tears-of-a-clown songs are plentiful in the pop repertory. But

Lennon

later said that these lines in 'I'm a Loser'

of mind in

late 1964.

He was

beginning to

times describes as that of a performing

tire

flea.

summed up

of a

life

He had

his state

that he

some-

perfected the

public persona that stardom required. But he considered his

to

life

Now established in Weybridge, a London suburb, he had


rarely saw and from whom he was growing estranged, and

be a mess.
a wife

he

young son he hardly knew. He had thrown himself enthusiastically

into the orgiastic circus that the Beatles' touring

life

had become. Yet

he resented the physical and psychic demands of that


'I'm a Loser'

called his

sage

'fat

was the

Beatle period'.

would be found

their first

first

life.

cry from the heart during

more

in the title

what he

direct amplification of this

song of the

major project of 1965: Help!

Beatles'

second

later

mes-

film,

and

o
5"
Q

3
Q.

C
CD

o
o

Up

till

then,

we had been making albums

rather like a collection


really

bit

beginning

ofart on

And Rubber

to

their

ofsingles.

Now

we were

think about albums as a

own, as

entities

Soul was the first

to

of their own.
emerge

that way.

George Martin, 1980


Harrison, Lennon, Starr

and

McCartney between takes


on the Helpl

set,

1965.

114

The Beatles

Help! and Rubber Sou/ 1965

The end of 1964 brought

a respite

of sorts. Although the Beatles

were booked for their second annual Christmas show, from


24 December to 16 January, the endeavour - in which they played
a concert set
in

and participated

London. After

a year that

comedy

saw two

skits

a film,

singles, a

long residency

at least

kept them

each to Europe and North

visits

at the

Hammersmith Odeon seemed

easy,

work.

A month-long holiday followed.


old Liverpudlian fiancee,

Starr married his eighteen-year-

Maureen Cox, on

11

McCartney and Harrison, meanwhile, faced


songs for the
as the

an Australasian tour, two albums and assorted

America,

if dull,

in

fifth

album. Like/1 Hard Day's Night,

soundtrack for the film

or Eight Arms to

February. Lennon,

the task of composing

Hold

You,

known

it

would double

provisionally as Beatles No. 2

and eventually

called Help!

Shooting was

scheduled to begin in the Bahamas on 23 February, and some of the

soundtrack music had to be in hand so that

mimed

musical numbers

could be choreographed.

So on the afternoon of 15 February, the Beatles took over Studio

No.

2 at

Abbey Road. Eight hours

later

they emerged with three

songs virtually finished: Lennon's 'Ticket to Ride', which would be


the next single, McCartney's
tribution since 1963,

Bahamas,

week

another Harrison

'I

later,

Need

You'.

By

Girl',

and Harrison's

first

con-

the time they set out for the

they had recorded eight more songs, including

effort.

March, and would

Another

The

stretch,

sessions

would resume

at the

end of

with filming interruptions, through to

mid-June. All told, they recorded twenty songs, of which only three the

Buck Owens

classic

Act Naturally' and two Larry Williams songs,

'Bad Boy' and 'Dizzy Miss Lizzy' - were covers. Although 'Dizzy Miss
Lizzy'

ended up

as the

raucous finale to the Help! zlhum, the Williams

covers were actually recorded specifically for the

help Capitol pad out

its

Beatles

VI album,

American market,

to

patchwork of Beatles For

Helpi and Rubber Soul

115

1965

The Beatles wave


at

to fans

London airport

in

February 1965 as they


leave to

start

Help!

the

in

work on

Bahamas.

and material from the Help! sessions that was not des-

Sale leftovers

tined for the film soundtrack.

The amount of new


sions

showed

Nor was

of late 1964.

Quarry

Men

quality.

example -

that they

era.

material the Beatles brought to the Help! ses-

had moved past the compositional dry

there any reaching back for material

Yet the

new

few - 'The Night


are

little

originals

Before'

more than

were not of uniformly top

and

pleasant

Me What You

'Tell

filler.

The

the originals from the February sessions were

later in the year.

a Lot',

were

left

Two

collaboration, 'Wait',
others, 'If You've

Got

with

one

in fact, three

on the

of

One,

was revived and completed


Trouble' and 'That

'If

You've

Means

Got Trouble'

showcase. Starr had, actually, been trying to

song of his own, and

finds references to a

the song with

shelf.

unissued.

Lennon and McCartney had composed


Starr's vocal

left

See,' for

Beatles themselves

were not content with everything they had recorded;

Lennon-McCartney

spell

from the

in

song

which he made

as

come up

published interviews as early as 1963,

in progress called 'Don't Pass

his

Me

By',

compositional debut in 1968.

For the present, though, he had to

rely either

Lennon and McCartney dreamed up

for

him.

on covers or on what

And

in this case,

it

was

116

The Beatles

not top-drawer material.

music was

Its

more than

little

a six-note lead

American soul

guitar riff with the accent of Stax-Volt, the

label, set

and

against a steely, steadily repeated, single bell-like guitar tone

chunky rhythm
less

impressive

settled

on

was given a slim melody

track. Starr

which, given

seemed

film references

its

and

own

his

a thoroughly appropriate choice.

McCartney's 'That Means a

bad song.

and even

In the end, the song was scrapped, and Starr

lyrics.

'Act Naturally,

central role in Help!,

to sing,

Lot', the other reject,

was not such

has a lilting melody, and a bitter-sweet lyric about the

It

tentative early stages of a romance.


early in the sessions,

They completed

and perhaps one count

against

used exactly the same kind of accompaniment


a rolling snare

and

rhythm

steady, crackling

a version of
it

was that

it

it

as 'Ticket to Ride'

guitars. In

view of their

disinclination to repeat gestures without significant alteration, they

may have

decided to choose between the two, giving preference to

'Ticket to Ride'.

They
ment

in

tried to

remake 'That Means a Lot' with

March, but were unable to sustain

no means wasted. McCartney passed


Proby,

who

away songs

recorded

it

in early April.

that they did not see

in particular

it

had become

fit

on

to the

They were,

Again',

'Nobody

name Bernard Webb,

But

it.

American
in fact,

to record themselves.

a hit factory for friends.

contributed the tuneful 'World Without Love',

You

a different arrange-

interest in

Know' and 'Woman'

in 1966) to the folk

'I

was by

still

P.

McCartney

notably, he

Don't

Want

Peter

J.

giving

Most

(the last

duo

it

singer

to See

under the pen-

and Gordon,

Peter being the brother of McCartney's girlfriend, Jane Asher.

There was one notable change


used the studio's four-track

worked

largely as they

playing their songs as

in the

facilities this

way

the Beatles and Martin

time. Until now, they

had during the two-track


if

they were

live

days, singing

performances.

When

they had

an acceptable basic recording, they would refine and embellish

overdubbed instrumental and vocal


Beatles For Sale sessions, they tried a

lines.

had

and

it

with

But near the end of the

new approach

that involved

building a performance in layers. First they recorded a rhythm track,

with basic guitars, bass and drums. Other instrumental touches were
then added, and then, once the complete backing was recorded, the
vocals

would be added. Lennon

in particular preferred this

not having to play while he was singing

left

him

method:

free to concentrate

Help! and Rubber Soul

117

965

on

Another peculiar aspect

his vocals.

that for the

first

to the the Help! sessions

time, instrumental duties within the

blurred. For the very

was

band were

song taped, 'Ticket to Ride', McCartney

first

played not only the bass, but the lead guitar

have suggested the distinctive rolling

drum

He

as well.

is

also said to

figure that Starr plays.

Later in the session, Harrison resumed his usual position, playing lead

on 'Another

guitar

lead guitar line


In the

first

Girl'. Yet, the

McCartney dubbed

next day

batch of songs recorded for the album, Lennon and

McCartney continued

some of the

in

had taken them, although

directions that Beatles For Sale

most part they backed away from

for the

that album's country leanings. Lennon's 'Ticket to Ride', like


Fine',

grows out of an opening guitar

the one put forth in

'I

Feel Fine'.

appreciates her

'Ticket to Ride'

is

riff,

Of course,

pation and a sharper edge.

woman who

The

man and

this

the text
earlier

one with

right.

The woman

progression

when

was

ear-catching

the guitar

riff,

Starr's

vocal harmonies in fourths

sion-building accenting

seem monotonous

and

but there

in the least. It

that

is

The
so

entire verse

much

going on

drumming, and intermittent


used mostly

thirds,

that the

muse

he has only himself

slightly quirky.

is

A major chord,

in

me is
around.' And

said that living with

this isn't right, despite the lyric's implication that

The chord

of

paean to a

is

so she's off without a second thought, leaving the singer to

melody hovers over an

Feel

'I

a slight synco-

just the opposite

is

song

him

treats

more independent. 'She

bringing her down. She would never be free

to blame.

new

on the song.

as a

kind of ten-

unchanging harmony does not

is

not until the refrain that Lennon

changes chords.

McCartney's offering

at the first session,

Another

Girl',

seemed

almost a direct response to Lennon's song, but in his version he has a

trump

card, namely, a replacement to

She has great credentials:

whom

'She's sweeter

than

quite a few,'

McCartney crows, 'nobody

she can do.'

Which

explains

why

he could happily
all

the

in all the

girls,

and

flee.

I've

met

world can do what

song built around

modified blues

progression, with a slinky blues guitar line running through

it,

sounds

so remarkably cheerful.

Harrison must have argued strongly on behalf of


this

his

songwriting

time around, because the group recorded two of his compositions

during the

first

three sessions.

The

songs,

'I

Need

You',

which was

118

The Beatles

Me Too

used in the film, and 'You Like

Much', which was not, are

both naive declarations of love, with neither the conflict nor the

dimension that Lennon and McCartney were weaving into


work. Yet, there are traces of Harrison's
for instance,

more

sense that they

seem driven by

guitarist than

their

Those sequences dart

melodies.

and

work of a

the

are,

of a songwriter, in the

chord sequences rather than their

freely

between major and minor keys,

yield melodies with the slightly exotic

and sometimes mournful

work through

character typical of Harrison's

their best

They

later style in these.

and

the Beatles years

well into his solo work.

new

Harrison brought a
allowed

used

him

to embellish

it

on

to fade in

Need

'I

plays with variants of an


a

Is',

Lennon

as the B-side

later

left

which

taking a solo

'This.

used

it

again

Boy was

rewrite of 'This Boy'.


rely

moment
built

on

in

Its

There

it

was

little

are similar-

on three-voice harmonies, with

an arching bridge section. But

common

with entirely triadic harmonies, 'Yes

and adventurous.

on Lennon's

of 'Ticket to Ride'.

both are slow ballads and

Lennon

pedal,

out of the film and off the album, but

spoke disparagingly of the song, saying

more than an unsuccessful

where

volume

had been plucked. He

You', doubling the acoustic guitar chords

A major chord. He

song that was

was released

ities:

it

points and accenting the opening chord sequence, which

at strategic

'Yes It

toy to the sessions, a

a guitar note after

1950s'

It Is' is

chord progression,

actually

more

original

vocal harmonies, for example, are spiced with

dissonances, particularly major seconds (two adjacent whole steps of

the scale). Moreover, these dissonances are functional: they highlight

gloomy mood of the

the rather

In the opening line,


Opposite, an exotic fantasy
shot

in

the

Bahamas,

London and the Swiss Alps,


Help! did not
Beatles as

engage

fully

as

the

A Hard

'if

lyric.

you wear red

tonight',

Lennon, McCartney

and Harrison begin on an E major chord, but when they reach

a colour

which, the song goes on

- the vocal harmony changes

coming

as

it

does

at the

to a

end of the

'red'

to explain, has painful associations

major second. The word


line,

might be expected

'tonight',

to resolve

Day's Night. Often stoned


during the filming, and not

into a comfortably settled

particularly interested

the

The

tension

they later complained

The

next

script,

in

that they

were treated os

extras

their

in

own

film.

with

line,

'said'

As

is

and

when

'remember what
'tonight'

ever, the Beatles

volume

harmony. But

increased just

it

it

too

is

set to a dissonance.

would normally be

dissipated.

said tonight', has a similar effect,

emphasized.

were

after

new

textures,

and besides Harrison's

pedal, they began using an electric piano,

sometimes

in

Help! and Rubber Sou/

1965

LEO McKERN
ELEANOR BRDN
produced by

WRITER SHENSON

tmirn sKmsm
SIIIHFitMS

ROY KINNERR

YICTOR SPINETTI
screenplay By

MFtFC

BEHM

CHARLES WOOD

story by

MRRC BEHM

ERSTMRN COLOUR

ROYAL WORLD PREMIERE


Md THE
Sponxmd

EARL OF

SNOWDOR

oy The Variety Club of

THURSDAY

29th

Gmm

Bnl*n

JULY 1965

LONDON PAVILION

directed Oy

RICHRRO LESTER

\jyiTKIV

120

The Beatles

combination with the

see the introduction of

American

on

guiro,

The

studio's concert grand.

more

would

also

exotic percussion, including a South

Me What You See'.

'Tell

sessions

But the biggest depar-

ture

was the use of outside musicians on two songs, Lennon's 'You've

Got

to

Hide Your Love Away' and McCartney's

'You've

Got

Hide Your Love Away',

to

the introspective line started with 'I'm a Loser'.

matter of active speculation.

It

may

'Yesterday'.

a poignant ballad, follows

subject has been a

Its

simply be a coded description of

an extramarital relationship, of which Lennon's experience was by

now

Another current theory

considerable.

that

is

refers to Epstein's

it

closeted homosexuality.

Both songs show Lennon's fascination with

On

'I'm a Loser', that influence can be heard in

Bob

Dylan's music.

the distinctly Dylanesque harmonica line

quite different in spirit

and technique from anything Lennon had played before - and the
barbed

lyric.

But there the Dylan influence was tempered by

and western

try

folkishly direct.

strain. 'You've
Still,

Got

to

Hide Your Love Away'

example, the word 'hide'


is

coun-

is

more

there are expressive touches similar to those

heard in the more harmonically complex 'Yes

In the chorus, for

It Is'.

the source of pain and conflict in the song

not given the high note in the melody, an emphasis sharpened by

the fact that the note clashes with the chord that accompanies
It

was

simple
guitar

Lennon and Martin

clear to

affair

on which the vocal was supported by

soft-focus acoustic

strumming, maraccas and tambourine - lacked something.

Martin brought

in

John

who

Scott, a flautist,

mented version of the melody on tenor and


in

it.

that the basic recording - a

tandem,

overdubbed

in the song's closing seconds.

Having taken the plunge, the


again four

played a lightly orna-

alto flutes,

months

that immediately

later

became

scribed 'Yesterday' as his


startling thing

about

it is

recorded 'Yesterday', a song

pop standard. McCartney has often

most
that

conscious inspiration. As he

and had the tune

Beatles brought in outside musicians

when McCartney

perfect song, but perhaps the


it

came

tells it,

in his head.

His

to

him

in a burst

Finding the

it

to people, asking

lyrics

love your legs'

was not

was

its

as easy.

most

of pure, un-

he simply woke up one morning

first

thought was that

melody he had heard somewhere and could not


weeks he sang

de-

them

if

they

place,

it

and

knew what

'Scrambled eggs,

was

for several
it

was.

oh baby how

provisional opening, but once

McCartney

Help! and Rubber Soul

121

1965

melody was

realized that the

about romantic

When
it

loss,

and the

his

own, he

fitted

desire to turn

it

out

as a

he brought the song to Abbey Road, Martin

was not - that

is,

sweet ballad

back the clock.

song that would lend

itself to a

first

saw what

treatment like

anything the Beatles had done hitherto. McCartney and the others
agreed, although they did fashion an electric guitar, bass

arrangement

for concert use in 1966.

treat the song,

guitar.

Harrison looks on as
director Dick Lester, with

megaphone,

calls the shots

during the filming of Help!

Between shots once again,

make

the

effort of looking interested

during one of the frequent


lulls in

the shooting of Help!

to

Martin had McCartney record a simple version,

accompanying himself on an acoustic

the Beatles barely

and drums

While considering how

The more he

listened

122

In

one

The Beatles

of the

interesting

more

sequences

in

Help! the Beatles perform

McCartney's 'The Night


Before' on Salisbury Plain,

surrounded by

British

troops and tanks.

Helpl and Rubber Soul

1965

123

124

The Beatles

to the tape, the clearer the solution seemed: the


string

song needed

accompaniment.

McCartney

resisted at

in the Beatles' musical universe, strings

first:

on rock records were considered extraneous

lugubrious

at best,

at

worst. Martin argued that a quartet, rather than a full string section,

would provide an elegant backing, and McCartney agreed


Although

it.

to try

often assumed that Martin wrote the arrangement,

it is

he and McCartney actually worked collaboratively

at the

piano, and

Martin has said that some of the most distinctive touches in the

quartet writing

McCartney's

the cello counterpoint, for example

- were

ideas.

Interestingly, at the

same

on

session

14 June that

song that was the polar opposite of 'Yesterday'.


Richard knock-off,

it

produced

Down', another McCartney

'Yesterday', the Beatles recorded 'I'm

seemed tailor-made

as a

A blatant Little

concert closer, and

indeed, through most of the group's 1965 and 1966 touring,

placed 'Long Tall

Sally' as

Lennon's was certainly 'Help!', a song he


est

- by which he meant emotionally

for the Beatles.

withyl Hard

upon

moment

was McCartney's defining

If 'Yesterday'

But

its

genesis

Day s Night,

it

dis-

the set finale.

the

later called

revealing

time out,

this

one of few hon-

- songs he wrote

was not auspicious. As was the case

title

of the second film was not settled

was nearly complete, whereupon Lennon and

until filming

McCartney were dispatched

compose

to

song to

fit it.

Help! was a chase film, or a parody of one. Dick Lester returned as


director,

and was given

in colour,

and

it

a grander budget.

would be shot

in the

This time the film would be

Bahamas, the Austrian Alps and

various locations in England, with a supporting cast that included

Leo McKern and Eleanor Bron. Marc


vided a script in which
is

pursued by the

Starr, the

priests

Beatles, this scenario

of an Eastern

and the

continuity
Beatles

film

the

was scheduled

cult.

Hence

the

Wood

pro-

sacrificial ring,
title.

For the

later

complained that Lester never told

was about, and since the filming was done out of

Bahamas sequences, shot

had no idea where they were

disciplined actors,

Charles

peripatetic filming schedule presented a

number of problems. Lennon


them what the

Behm and

unwitting owner of a

and tended

to begin at

first,

end the

in the story.

to stay out

all

film

They were

night, even

the

also

when

not

filming

dawn. Moreover, having been introduced

Help! and Rubber Soul

In this

scene from Help!,

the Beatles seek

protection at

125

1965

peace and

to marijuana

through

The

finished film shows

House, a Victorian country

fresh as they

house near Maidenhead),

ject

but are nevertheless pursued


sacrificial cult

whose

sacred ring has been sent


to Ringo.

six

months

in

good comic form,

earlier,

they were high

of the filming.

Buckingham

Palace (actually Cliveden

by a

by Bob Dylan only

much

own

were

in

them

A Hard Day's Night.

did not interest them, and


film.

They owed United

left

them

if

not quite

as

But fundamentally, the profeeling like extras in their

Artists a third film, but after their ex-

perience in Help! they rejected one script after another, even one by
the talented and then-fashionable British playwright, Joe Orton.

When Lennon
was disinclined

turned to the task of composing 'Help!'

in April,

produce a lightweight song that would

reflect the

to

zany shenanigans of the


critical reflection. In

for help four times

guitar figure

film. Instead,

he produced another

the introduction,
the last in falsetto

self-

McCartney and Harrison


- punctuated by

and Lennons explicatory lead

vocal.

musical lonely hearts advertisement: the singer

is

So

far, it

he

call

descending
could be a

looking for someone

126

In

The Beatles

one

of their

most famous

concerts, the Beatles

special.

But when Lennon sings the

24-year-old

who

is

completely

first verse,

we

get a glimpse of a

adrift:

perform for an audience of

55,600

New

at

Shea Stadium

York on 15 August

1965. The show was


filmed for television.

in

When I was younger,

so

much younger than

today

I never needed anybody's help in any way

And now these days are gone,

I'm not so selfassured.

Now Ifind I've changed my mind,


I've

opened up the

The

bright,

door.

bouncy production

that

Martin and the group gave the

recording disguised the song's confessional nature and


for use in the film.

Few

listeners at the

biographical cry of pain; even

time to

realize that this

The productive
later,

is

Lennon

make

time read the song


said that

it

as

it

perfect

an auto-

took him some

what the song was.

sessions

the Beatles were back

came

to

an end on 17 June. Three days

on the road, where they remained

until

Help! and Rubber Soul

127

1965

They had

early September.

that

the

plenty to discuss in the press conferences

had become part of their touring

new album,

in the Works,

on Queen

The

had

just

1965

in the

Most

summer

North America, the


ers at

been published.

Elizabeth's Birthday

Membership

ritual.

Apart from the film and

a second collection of Lennon's writings,

Shea Stadium

Honours

List:

12

Spaniard

June they appeared

they would be awarded

Excellent Order of the British Empire.

tour took

them

final leg starting

in

And on

to France, Italy, Spain

and

with a concert for 55,600

New York. By now Lennon

listen-

and Harrison were

finding the road a depressing, stifling place. Their fans seemed not
to have

changed

a bit in the year since the last

world

tour.

They con-

tinued to shriek through the concerts, and the Beatles' movements

were surrounded by a pandemonium that had grown oppressive.

The

Beatles themselves

had changed

a great deal.

They were

experi-

menting by then not only with marijuana but with hallucinogenic


drugs, particularly

world

politics,

LSD. They had become

and chafed against

cussing the Vietnam war or

They were

also

increasingly interested in

Epstein's prohibition against dis-

civil rights in their press

conferences.

beginning to rebel against Epstein's control. They had

rejected Epstein's suggestion that they accept an invitation to play

The Beatles display

their

MBE's, conferred upon them


by

Queen

Elizabeth

II

on

26 October 1965. Lennon


later returned his in protest

at Britain's support of the

American war
the situation

in

in

Vietnam,

Biafra,

and

the lack of chart success of


his single

'Cold Turkey'.

128

The Beatles

Left,

during the

Lennon played

1965

often sliding his

and down

the

tours,

electric

piano as well as

129

1965

Help! and Rubber Soul

another Royal

the

elbows up

keyboard

of ebullience.

group

Performance, and they refused to consider

They agreed

to tour

guitar,

to

Britain in

December, but they told Epstein that

When

the tour ended, they took a month-long break before

As

work on

returning to the studio to

their sixth

sets up, Brian

Epstein confers with Lennon.

their touring days

were numbered.

give their set an extra

measure

Command

another season of London Christmas shows.

established a pattern of producing

album. The Beatles had

two albums every

with the

year,

second out in time for the holiday market. Their scheduling in 1965
cut close to the second deadline. But by working into the early hours

of the morning and in one

and
3

12

case, until

dawn between

November, they had the album finished and

December. This pressure yielded Rubber

sistent

and

satisfying of

their albums.

all

12

October

in the shops

With Rubber Soul they

finally

turned their backs on cover versions. All the songs are originals,
they would be for the

of their recording

rest

on the album, Harrison composed two, and


orative credit, with

by

one of the most con-

Soul,

career.

Of the

as

fourteen

Starr gets his first collab-

Lennon and McCartney, on 'What Goes On',

revamped version of a song that dates back


There was another

to the

Quarry

Men

revival in the set too: the first traces

days.

of

McCartney's 'Michelle' are heard on a practice tape from 1963,

when McCartney used


a

its

bright chord progression to

Maurice Chevalier imitation, apparently

Now he finished

it,

referring to

French, but otherwise making

its

it

accompany

a favourite party trick.

original use

by including a

an amorous ballad nearly

line in

as pretty

as 'Yesterday'.

In George Martin's estimation, Rubber Soul 'presented a


Beatles to the world'. Yet

ways, the real

stylistic

it

was not

spirit

of texture, the songs recorded then - particularly

and

'It's

Only

with Rubber Soul than with the


the

new

Love'
rest

'I've

and complexity
Just Seen a

- have much more

in

common

of Help! And of course, one of the

album's tracks, 'Wait', was actually started during Help!

changed with Rubber 5ow/was the way the Beatles regarded


album. Through Help!'they saw their albums
related songs,
single.

some

break had occurred in mid-June, near the end

of the Help! sessions. In terms of sophistication,

Face', 'Yesterday'

new

entirely out of the blue. In

as collections

any of which should be good enough to

With Rubber Soul, they began

to toy

What

a record

of un-

release as a

with the idea of an album

130

The Beatles

as a

kind of song

picture, even

if

which each piece was part of a bigger

cycle, in

the connections were never overt.

Can Rubber Soul really be

regarded as a cycle? In a way,

shows

it

greater thematic unity than Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band,

which

usually called the

is

are love songs,

first

concept album'. Nearly

and although that

album, each song here looks

is

at love

from a

of Lennon's songs, 'The Word', prefigures


a celebration

but

of love in the abstract not

as a universal concept.

regard.

love,

same

pop

One

distinct perspective.

'All

as

You Need

Is

Love' as

an interpersonal emotion,

and

is

tradi-

virtually alone in that

His 'You Won't See Me', by contrast, looks

inability to connect. Later, in 'I'm

a mirror image, the

the songs
a

McCartney's 'Michelle' takes a more

romantic

tional look at purely

all

uncommon on

hardly

at a frustrating

Looking Through You', he presents

relationship, but

from the perspective of the

disengaged partner.
Servility

and

My Car',

sexuality mingle in McCartney's 'Drive

the album's opening track, in

which

dangling the prospect of love. Fidelity

would-be
is

starlet hires a driver,

declared and

demanded

in

McCartney's 'Wait', while Lennon's 'Norwegian Wood' cryptically


describes a one-night stand.

Its title

has never been adequately

explained: the lyrics suggest that the furnishings in the

were Norwegian, although an alternate explanation


a

is

woman's

that the

flat

title is

corruption of the phrase 'knowing she would'.

Lennon
Singing

also turns his attention to dysfunctional relationships.

'Girl',

he sounds

like a fly in a spider-web:

he would love

woman he describes, but cannot. She


same woman described in the track just before

to leave the icy, manipulative

could almost be the


it

on the

record,

'What Goes On',

measure, Lennon

recalls

the threats of

Cry

Your

'I'll

Yet

Life'.

touchingly

Lennon

friends in his past.

song, and

is

know what

and me?'

Do

also contributes

My Life',

That' and

'Run For

one of the album's most

a reflective

song

in

which the

set against affection for the places, lovers

Even 'Nowhere Man', though not overtly

more than

ination series,

not

is

For good

Instead' in the album's biting finale,

lyrical songs, 'In

power of a new love

Starr's vocal vehicle.

both the jealousy of 'You Can't

likely

at least
he's

and

a love

another instalment in Lennon's self-exam-

about acceptance: the subject of the song

about, but

Lennon

sings, 'isn't

he

a bit like

may

you

Help! and Rubber Soul

965

Harrison's 'Think for Yourself

angry and impatient, he


than a lover) that there

around

to see

but

time for change - but that he

is

His other contribution,

it.

The two
theme

take

he'll

down

the

He

superficially

'If

the

reference without realizing

'trip'

And 'We Can Work

It

Out'

Hard Day's

verses, set to a bright

minor mode and sweeps away the


There

is

Out.' For the


part, the

is

and

give

solidly in quarter time,

entirely, at the

gives the feeling that for

take: life

about trying

in

is

shirts into

too short

'We Can Work

and although

end of the bridge

the music, or at least

two bars the song has moved into

seems. But

it

some of it.

Its

origin

heard from black American musicians,

rhythm and blues bands

it

in a

who were

(specifically, the

never

triple time.

title

had plenty

was

it

a triplet figure

Soul was a song cycle of sorts, what did the

do with the theme? Nothing,

The

are

time, the group attempts a metre change. For the

first

abandons that metre

It Rubber

Night'. In this case,

one musical quirk worth noting

song

a classic

is

through negotiation. Lennon's bridge

to save a relationship

soul'.

is

about being led on, but could equally be about drugs.

major key melody,

most

the album's 'aspects of love'

fit

McCartney's

It

is

he

lover,

just in case.

collaboration, along the lines of 'A

for that.

waiting

isn't

Needed Someone',

Lennon's 'Day Tripper', another guitar-riff song,

drug-culture meaning.

the

absence:

its

not in the market for a

phone number

Lennon would not have used


its

is

songs released as a single

as well.

about love than

the song's object (perhaps a friend rather

tells

study in romantic aloofness.


says,

less

is

to

have to

do with

phrase McCartney

describing British

Rolling Stones) as 'plastic

Beatles turned that into a pun, changing plastic to rubber

and printing the

title in

the shape of a shoe.

The

'rubber' aspect

was

emphasized by the cover photo, a distorted fish-eye lens shot of


the group.

One

track that the

title

could particularly have referred to was

'12-Bar Original', a slinky instrumental in the style of

Booker

the MG's, which was recorded during these sessions but

left

T.

and

off the

album. But there were other tracks with decided Motown, Stax, and
even muted Gospel influences. McCartney's 'You Won't See Me' and

Lennon's 'The Word' borrow textures and chord voicings from soul
records.

And

both the chord progression and the winding guitar and

the bass rifTthat propels 'Drive

Redding's version of 'Respect'.

My Car'
The

rifT

are

borrowed from Otis

would continue

its

travels: in

The Beatles

132

In

November 1965,

Granada

Television

produced The Music of


Lennon and McCarfney,

an hour-long programme
devoted

to the thriving

songwriting partnership,
with performances by the

Beatles

and other musicians.

Between scenes the


composers consult with a
technician as orchestral

musicians and

stylish

London models wait


filming to resume.

for

Help! and Rubber Soul

965

33

1968 Jimi Hendrix used almost exactly the same figure as the basis of

'Crosstown

his

But the album


soul moves.

'Drive

song with an automotive motif that hinted

Traffic', a

McCartney song

at ties to the

It

is

rather than the

offers interesting textural

My Car',

under the top

car horn.

And

On

touches of all kinds.

open

new

to

which

minor second,

picturesque impression of a blaring

line, creates a

ever

harmonium

ing

original.

vocal harmonies in fifths give way, in the line leading

into the chorus, to three-voice harmonies in


just

Redding

by no means limited to or even dominated by

sounds, the group brings in a wheez-

(played by Martin) for the solo in 'The Word', and as

part of the backing for Harrison's twangy, Byrds-inspired 'If

Someone'. McCartney's increasingly proficient piano playing

on

several songs,

and

Needed

a distorted fuzz-bass takes centre stage in

common on

for Yourself. Slide guitars,

heard

is

'Think

blues and country records,

but not previously used by the Beatles, make appearances in 'Drive

My Car'

and 'Run

for

Your

Life'.

And

'Girl' features elegant

counter-

point between a guitar and a bouzouki, a mandolin-like instrument


that

Martin brought them

The newest

after a visit to Greece.

instrumental colour here, of course,

is

the

the

sitar,

800-year-old Indian classical instrument that Harrison became fascinated with after encountering one on the set of Help! Harrison began

studying with the

sitar

master Ravi Shankar, and eventually would

work Indian motifs

into Beatles songs.

At the Rubber Soul sessions,

though, he was

clearly a beginner,

and

still

to doubling the

melody

line

and adding

his sitar playing

slight

limited

is

embellishments to

Lennon's Dylanesque 'Norwegian Wood'.

Lennon

is

not often thought of as a great melodist,

when McCartney
several

is

close at hand.

Lennon songs here notable

grace. 'Girl'

and 'Nowhere Man'

for their easily flowing

also

the

first

is

'In

My Life'.

Its

is

not

one of

melodic

have lovely melodies, the

abetted by lush vocal harmonies. But certainly


ballads

at least

But 'Norwegian Wood'

recording, too,

is

latter

among Lennon's

masterful,

finest

and one of

examples of the electronic tinkering that would become an

increasingly important part of the group's studio technique. For the

most part the instrumental configuration


of guitars, bass
hall or the

and drums. But

stadium.

this

is

is

the early Beatles set-up

not the Beatles of the dance

gentle, relaxed rising guitar figure

opens the

134

The Beatles

song, supported by an almost motionless, atmospheric bass and

rhythm

The

guitar,

and

surprise

drum

part full of subtle touches.

in the instrumental solo.

is

Baroque counterpoint, played by Martin,

An

listed

it is

jacket as a piano solo, but sounds peculiar

attractive burst

on the album

punchier than

but not sharp-edged enough to be a harpsichord. In

of neo-

a piano,

Martin

fact,

recorded the solo with the tapes running at half speed, a trick that not

only

let

him

more

play

speedily than he might have

but which gave the piano

its

odd timbre

when

done

in real time,

the tape was played at

speed.

full

When

the Beatles

first

Abbey Road's

entered

portals three years

there was a distinct division of labour at a recording session.

earlier,

The musicians

played; the engineers

saw

to the sound.

But with the

Rubber Soul sessions, the technicians found themselves - and EMI's


guidelines for proper recording

In 'Girl', for example, they


that

Lennon made

to be emphasized,
sufficiently,

The same

they

in the the refrain.

the Beatles' demands.

emphasize the breathing sound

to

Their idea was for the treble

and when EMI's equipment did not emphasize

demanded

get

that a

way be found

away with some

instead of the 'oohs',

typically

wanted

to filter

it

it

further.

thing was done with the guitar solo in 'Nowhere Man'.

They could now


'Girl',

- challenged by

'ahs'

slight naughtiness as well. In

and repeated

lyrics

on which they

harmonized, Harrison and McCartney sang

against Lennon's lead vocal in the bridge.

'tit-tit-tit-tit'

Who would suspect such

subversion in a song so beautiful?

When
dawn on

the Beatles
12

and Martin

filed

November, they knew

ished was a definite leap forward. Yet


the leap they
ically

would make

in 1966,

out of the studio just past

that the
it

album they had

just fin-

was nothing compared with

when backwards

tapes, electron-

manipulated vocal and instrumental sounds, a more ambitious

use of Indian instruments and motifs, and contributions from outside


string

and

In the

brass players figured into the mix.

meantime, they ended 1965 playing what turned out

their last British tour, starting in

Rubber Soul was


ending

Glasgow on

released, stopping in Liverpool

in Cardiff

on

12

December.

to be

December, the day

two days

later,

and

o
o
I

VI

We

were getting a

little

The Beatles ...It was


predictable. I said,
we're another band.
John Lennon ceded the

and make up an

bit fed

up of being

all getting so bloody

why dont we pretend that

Make

identity,

up a name for

make up

it

alter egos,

musical direction of the


Beatles to Paul

McCartney

during the Sgt. Pepper's


Lonely Hearts Club
sessions,

in

the point

we can make a whole album


of view of this other band.

Band

early 1967,

but the spirit of the time

did not elude him:


his

just pretend, so

from

this

was

psychedelic caravan,

complete with the

Pepper drumhead.

Sgt.

Paul

McCartney on

Sgt. Pepper,

1989

136

The Beatles

Towards

Sgf.

Pepper 1966-7

In 1966, the Beatles seemed to go out of their

They were

way

to court trouble.

the cause of riots in Japan and the Philippines, and at the

centre of a religious controversy in the

USA. They had decided

it

was

time to speak out against the war in Vietnam, and although they

couched

their

comments

broadly pacifist terms, their criticism was

in

not universally well received. There was further consternation when,


pressed by reporters,

mented with

McCartney admitted

And

drugs.

no longer tour gave

to top

rise to

it all

off,

that the

band had

reports that they

experi-

would

rumours that they were breaking up. But

1966 was also the year of Revolver, an album with which they would
increase the creative distance
in

pop.

It

Forever',

between themselves and everyone

else

was the year that saw the recording of 'Strawberry Fields

and the beginning of Sgt.

the defining

Pepper's Lonely Hearts

Club Band,

album of the summer of 1967.

Because of a scheduling fluke, the Beatles had a virtually clear


calendar for .the

first

four

months of the

year.

Epstein had hoped that

they would spend these months making a film, as they had done the
previous two years. But he had not counted on the Beatles' increasing
wilfulness. After Help!, they

demanded

script approval,

and then

refused to approve any.

During

Lennon and

this break,

wives. Harrison married Pattie

Starr flew to Trinidad with their

Boyd on

honeymoon. And McCartney stayed


up new

influences.

He

in

January and flew off for a

21

London, voraciously soaking

attended concerts of

new works by Luciano

Berio and Karlheinz Stockhausen, and became interested in electronic

music.

new

He

developed a

listening habits,

taste for the visual

and

and other twentieth-century

Surrealists.

works by Henri Magritte

And

he helped

start the

London underground newspaper.

International Times, a
All the Beatles set

avant garde to match his

started collecting

up home studios where they could

sounds, record ideas that came to them, and


tapes to play to the others in the studio.

tinker with

make demonstration

And when

they gathered at

Towards

Sgf.

George Harrison

after his

wedding

Boyd, a

to Pattie

model he had met on


set of

A Hard Day's

They were divorced


(Pattie

had

137

Pepper 1966-7

left

the

Night.
in

1977

Harrison for

the guitarist Eric Clapton


in

1974),

and Harrison

married Olivia Arias on


2 September 1978.

Abbey Road on 6
ideas. In fact the

April, they

'Tomorrow Never Knows'


was

brought with them some outlandish

song they began work on that


(the title

a harbinger of the experimentation to

far stranger

first

was another

night, Lennon's

Starr malapropism),

come. Lennon's

lyric

was

and more imagistic than anything he had previously

brought to the studio. Inspired by The Psychedelic Experience, a reinterpretation of the Tibetan

Book of the Dead, by the

Timothy Leary and Richard

Albert, the lyric

LSD

proponents

recommends:

Turn offyour mind, relax and float downstream


It is

not dying,

Lay down

it is

It is shining, it

In 1965,

not dying.

all thought, surrender to the void


is

shining.

Lennon had included cagey

lyrics; here,

only the most naive listener could have doubted the

song's provenance in the

Reduced

references to being high in his

to

its

Knows' has very


chord, with a

world of hallucinogenic drugs.

melodic and harmonic

little in it. Its

momentary

essentials,

simple melody

floats

'Tomorrow Never
over a single

fluctuation rather than a full-fledged chord

11

138

The Beatles

change

at the

sculpture

end of each

it is.

Harrison's sitar
collaborate

cally

and

But what an extraordinary sound


invited a drone

repetitive,

ritualistic bass

from

McCartney and

a sustained organ tone.

on an almost

pounding and

verse.

The unchanging harmony

and drum

Starr

figure, steady,

with the drums closely miked and electroni-

compressed to give them a more

visceral feel.

There

are splashes

of piano and backward guitars, and a chaotic overlay of electronic


sounds, drawn from the bags of tape loops

bits

of recording tape

joined end to end so that their sounds keep repeating

and McCartney had made

at

home. And there

is

that

Lennon

Lennon's hauntingly

disembodied lead vocal.

Two new techniques were used to create the peculiar vocal sound.
One was Artificial Double Tracking, invented by Ken Townsend, an
Abbey Road

engineer, to address Lennon's desire to double his vocals

without bothering to sing them twice. Townsend realized that he


could create the illusion of double-tracking by taking the vocal, delaying

it

about thirty milliseconds, and combining the delayed version

with the original. Doing

this

meant modifying the tape machines

Lennon during the filming


of a promotional video clip
for 'Rain'.

that their speeds could be varied gradually


Beatles soon

found other

uses.

an

effect for

so

which the

Towards

Sgf.

Pepper 1966-7

139

The second technique was more


sound he wanted

Lama

the Dalai

radical.

Lennon had described

of 'thousands of monks chanting', or

as that

singing on a hilltop'. Failing those, he wanted to put

his voice

through the rotating Leslie speaker that gives the

organ

characteristic oscillating sound.

its

the

'like

Doing

so

meant

Hammond
dissecting

the organ and rewiring the speaker. But at that point, the Beatles'

wishes were the engineers' commands.


In fact for the next

two and

months Abbey Road became

a half

an electronic wonderland for the Beatles, with virtually every session

new

yielding

techniques.

The

'Tomorrow Never Knows'

use of backward guitar sounds in

led to further experiments.

Some may have

been serendipitous: Lennon always said that he decided to add a

backward vocal

to the

coda of 'Rain'

and

recorder,

what he heard. But

liking

home

after taking

song-in-progress, accidentally threading

in interviews

Martin said that the backward vocal was

Other uses of backward sounds were

of the

a tape

backwards on

it

his tape

from the time,

his idea.

carefully planned.

To

pro-

duce the backward guitar solos in Lennon's gloriously lethargic 'I'm

Only

Sleeping', Harrison

wrote them

play,

down

worked out the

in reverse order,

wanted them

solos he

to

and then overdubbed them

onto a tape running backwards. Complicating matters, Harrison

wanted

to

combine

a distorted fuzz guitar

and so recorded two

sets

of backward

and

a straight guitar sound,

The

solos.

operation took a

full

six hours.

'I'm

Only

Sleeping'

was

also

one of several recordings

the Beatles tinkered with tape speeds.

piano solo for

'In

My Life',

the

When

facilities

in

which

Martin recorded

offered only full

and

his

half-

speed recording. But now, after Townsend's innovations, tape speed

was

flexible.

Fascinated with the subtle timbre changes that toying

with tape speeds yielded, they began recording songs with machines

running
at

slightly slow, so that they

normal speed, or vice

versa.

sounded

faster

when

played back

That explains the sped-up quality

of Lennon's vocal on 'I'm Only Sleeping' and McCartney's on 'For

No

One'.

For 'Yellow Submarine', the charming fantasy song that Lennon

and McCartney composed


cupboards
part, they

in search

for Starr to sing, the Beatles raided

of sound

effects.

dragged chains through

With

EMI's

the technical staff taking

bathtub

filled

with water, blew

140

The Beatles

Towards

Starting
[left)

Sgt.

in

Pepper 1966-7

141

1965, McCartney

sometimes played lead

guitar on Beatles recordings,

and he

is

heard

in

that

capacity on several of the


Sgt.

Pepper

tracks. Harrison,

[below] of course, retained


the lead guitarist position
officially,

and indeed

his

playing had grown


considerably: during these
sessions he contributed an

unusually expansive solo to

McCartney's

'Fixing a Hole'.

As the Beatles' music grew

more complicated, so did


Lennon's and McCartney's

demands on

Starr's

percussion talents. Starr

once complained

seemed

to

with four arms,


at this

that they

want a drummer

1967

and indeed,

session,

McCartney loaned
to the task in

hand.

his

two

142

The Beatles

bubbles in a bucket and tried out noises of all

more overdubs:
and

a brass

band was brought

crowd of friends and spouses turned up

And

sorts.

to sing the chorus.

Although the taboo against outside musicians had

no outsiders played on Rubber

the Help! sessions,

inhibitions about that

added

away.

fell

to 'Yellow Submarine',

and saxophones be added


Life'.

Alan

was brought

Two weeks

sion part to his sitar-centred 'Love


to

on

Bhagwat

before the brass was

known

'For

that trumpets

No

My

in classical circles,

One'. Harrison

add an improvisatory percus-

to

You

But now any

'Got to Get You Into

soloist well

in to play the agile solo

invited the tabla player Anil

during

fallen

Soul.

McCartney requested

to his soulful

French horn

Civil, a

there were

in to play a circusy figure,

To'.

And no

longer needing

be persuaded that strings could work on a Beatles recording,

McCartney asked Martin

to write a string score (an octet this time)

for 'Eleanor Rigby'.

Some of the

demanded more

songs

tion. Harrison's 'Taxman',

with a sizzlingly virtuosic guitar solo

McCartney, whose

facility

traditional rock instrumenta-

which opens the

had

record,

is

a plain rocker,

- not by Harrison, but by

clearly outstripped that

of the band's

and 'And Your Bird Can

lead guitarist. Lennon's 'Doctor Robert'

Sing' are also straightforward guitar, bass

and drums

pieces, the latter

distinguished by a fabulous electric guitar obbligato multitracked in


thirds

by Harrison to create a running chordal

lighter,

bouncier, piano-based

effect.

McCartney's

'Good Day Sunshine', and the

geous 'Here, There and Everywhere' are also

free

of fancy

gor-

effects

and

orchestral overdubs.

McCartney's 'Paperback Writer' and Lennon's


chosen for release

as a single, also

'Rain', the

songs

kept largely to the classic Beatles

instrumentation, although they are notably punchier than anything


the Beatles had released so

was a knock-out.

Its

far.

On

Harrison announcing the song's


flourish,

first

hearing, 'Paperback Writer'

introduction has Lennon,

out of which

spills

title in

McCartney and

a brisk, a cappella choral

an energetic guitar

riff.

not a love song, but a piece of epistolary fiction - a

author anxious to hawk his 1,000-page novel.


oddities.

There

is

no

bridge, merely

two

It

has

This

is,

letter

some

verses, a reprise

for once,

from an
structural

of the intro-

ductory a cappella section, two more verses, another a cappella section

and

a coda.

Towards

Sgf.

Pepper 1966-7

143

Like 'Tomorrow Never Knows', the song

with a brief change


accidental.

on

rests

a single chord,

This harmonic minimalism

at the chorus.

is

not

At the end of 1965, McCartney told an interviewer that

one of his goals was

write a song with just one note', something he

'to

thought Lennon had come close to doing in 'The Word'. McCartney


is

too

much

of a melodist to accomplish

harmonic movement, he has kept


he disguises

and intermittent vocal harmonies,

from the song's lack of harmonic

'Rain' has elements in


it is

more

but by reducing the


constricted. Moreover,

with a driving, melodic bass

this simplicity

layered percussion
distract the ear

that,

melody

his

virtuosic

all

common

all

line, tactile

of which

variety.

with 'Paperback Writer', although

around. Starr opens the song with two quick

snare bursts, and then continues with one of the most energetic,

complex and unceasingly fascinating drum


Paralleling

McCartney's song, there

is

parts he ever recorded.

an introductory guitar

runs, in various guises, through the song, surrounded

riff

that

by a bagpipe-

like drone.

McCartney's

bass, placed

him

counterpoint that takes


does comparatively

out front in the mix,

an ingenious

is

when

over the fretboard. Yet even

all

the performance. At the chorus, for example, while

Lennon and

McCartney harmonize

a slightly

Eastern tinge,

F natural

just

cessive beats.

a high

below

The

on

in fourths

McCartney

by hammering on

it),

it

can be the most interesting element of

little, it

first

melody with

Middle

points up the song's droning character

(approached with a quick

playing

it

steadily

on the beat

slide

for

from the

twenty suc-

next time the chorus comes around, though, he

plays something entirely different, a slightly syncopated descending

three-note pattern that almost seems to evoke the falling rain.


'Rain'

shelter

is

not about much. Lennon simply observes that people seek

from both

The remarkable
singles,

all

rain

and

shine, but that he doesn't

thing, of course,

is

packed with songs about

that after six

mind

either way.

albums and eleven

love, or the lack

of it, Lennon

and McCartney had discovered that there were other things


about, and both Revolver and

this, their

to sing

twelfth single, were enlivened

by that discovery. Revolver opens with Harrison's complaint about


England's tax system, which was siphoning off ninety-five per cent of
his earnings.

Images of loneliness and alienation - an old

woman

picking up the rice after a wedding, a minister writing sermons that

The

Be

no one hears - haunt 'Eleanor Rigby'. And Lennon's 'And Your Bird

Can

Sing'

message of sheer defiance. Drugs weave their way

is

much

through

of Revolver. In his searing 'She Said She Said', a

nearly as vivid as

moment

'Tomorrow Never Knows', Lennon

when

during the 1965 tour

Fonda were

around

sitting

a pool,

who

physician

opening

song's

the Beatles and the actor Peter

having taken some LSD, and

Fonda mused about knowing what


became the

was

it

And

line.

work

describes a

like to

be dead. His claim

'Doctor Robert'

about a

is

supplied drugs to a starry clientele.

Love songs were not completely abandoned. In 'Good Day

McCartney

Sunshine',

blithely chirps

about

how wonderful

No

be in love. But in 'Here, There and Everywhere' and 'For

McCartney

working

at a

hands through her


is

first is

hair,

idyllic, idealized

romance

is

we

know

'There, running

how good

is

my

can be;

it

he's there'

romance. The second


see the

One',

a tender, descriptive ballad,

both of us thinking

portrait of abandonment:

to

producing songs that are

Its lyrics

speaking and she doesn't

evocation of

that the

level,

harmonies.

in pristine triadic

someone

higher

and picturesque. The

articulate

sung

is

it is

are a perfect

a dual-focus

spurned lover refusing to believe

over, as well as the

woman,

off with

someone

else

and declaring her freedom.


Harrison, too, had

come

a long

way

composer.

as a

He

has three

songs on Revolver, each quite different. Besides 'Taxman', the stinging


rocker, there
its

is

the laid back, slightly quirky

mildly dissonant piano part and

its

lyric

'I

Want

to Tell You', with

about the frustration of

being tongue-tied in the presence of someone he hopes to seduce.

And

in 'Love

You

he breaks

To',

new ground by melding

Indian

timbres and traditional melodies with an otherwise conventional

pop song form.


For the album's cover, the Beatles commissioned their old

Hamburg

friend Klaus

British singer

Voorman, who was then playing

Manfred Mann. Voorman provided

that contrasted the 1966 Beatles with the

bass with the

a telling collage

Moptops of the

past.

The

current Beatles are captured in spare line drawings, with photographs

of their eyes

inset.

Their hair

standing and lying in

it

is

long and shaggy, and poking out of it,

and crawling through

it,

are the early Beatles,

represented by photographs taken between 1962 and 1965.

Towards

Sgt.

145

Pepper 1966-

During their summer world


tour

1966, the Beatles

in

returned to
the

first

Germany

for

time since 1962,

and spent some time with


the Rattles, a

band

Hamburg

inspired by the

Mersey Sound (and

style).

As soon

album was completed, the

as the

instruments and headed to


tour.

So

little

Germany

did they care about

live

Beatles packed their

for the first part of the 1966

performances by then that they

did not bother to rehearse, nor did they attempt to produce stage
versions of any of the material they

had

tepid facsimile of 'Paperback Writer'.

show was worth


had become

just recorded, apart

They did not pretend

from

that their

seeing: in interviews, they said quite frankly that they

terrible performers,

and

that with

all

the screaming they

could neither hear themselves nor make themselves heard.

Their doubts about their performance standard turned out to be


the least of their worries. In Japan, they had been
the

Budokan Hall

in

Tokyo, and Japanese martial

regarded the hall as a shrine, rioted to protest at

booked

to play at

arts devotees,

its

Western pop group. The security provided kept the Beatles


stifled:

came

they were not allowed to leave their hotel rooms.

to appreciate that level

who

desecration by a
safe

but

They soon

of protection. In Manila, they played to

146

The Beatles

After the

1966 world

Lennon flew

tour,

to Almeria,

Spain, to portray Private

Gripweed

in

Richard

Lester's anti-war film,


/

Won

that

War.

the

How

was

It

there

Lennon began one

of his most

complex and

beautiful songs, 'Strawberry


Fields Forever'.

an audience of 100,000, the

largest

crowd of their

career.

A schedul-

ing mix-up, however, resulted in their failing to turn up at a party

hosted by Imelda Marcos, the wife of the country's President.

media worked
Beatles
port,

and

itself into a frenzy, security

their entourage

The

was withdrawn, and the

were made to run a gauntlet

where they were further harassed by government

at the air-

officials

before

being allowed to leave.

There was more trouble


less:

on

15

of tracks

in store in the

USA. Some of it was harm-

June Capitol released Yesterday and Today, a compilation

left

off the

'We Can Work

It

American editions of Help! and Rubber

Soul, plus

Out', 'Day Tripper' and three tracks from the

Revolver sessions, then

still

in progress.

For the cover, the Beatles sent

along an arty photograph taken by Robert Whittaker. In the photo,


they are dressed in butcher smocks, and strewn across them are slabs

of raw meat and the separate bodies and bloodied heads of decapitated baby dolls.

casioned no

The

Beatles are beaming.

comment

for 'Paperback Writer'.

soon

as

it

was

in Britain,

Nor was

issued, Capitol

asserting a desire to 'avoid

harm

where

it

had

it

The photograph had


was used

widely criticized
a

oc-

in advertisements
in

America. But

change of heart and withdrew

as

it,

any possible controversy or undeserved

to the Beatles' reputation.' Instead, they issued the

album with

Towards

Sgf.

147

Pepper 1966-7

an innocuous and rather glum

McCartney

the cover was,

A few weeks

Lennon

Standard on 4 March,

be proved

which

in

and shrink.

will vanish

go

that

had been published

which Lennon

in the

rock and

first,

Evening

said: 'Christianity will go. It

needn't argue about that; I'm right and will

roll

don't

know

or Christianity. Jesus was alright, but

were thick and ordinary.

his disciples

Vietnam.'

We're more popular than Jesus now;

right.

will

as relevant as

'it's

Datebook magazine printed an excerpt from an

later,

interview with John

Asked what the relevance of

portrait.

replied,

It's

them

that ruin

it

for me.'

As with the butcher photo, the observation caused no controversy

when
first

it

was published

Magazine

in

England.

Nor was

same quote was included

part of the

article

published on 29

on

New

But when the Datebook

3 July.

July,

there any fuss

in a

their Beatles records

article

which

Beatles' concerts.

The

Epstein, though concerned about this, decided to go

and

was

listeners

could

and memorabilia, and members of the Ku

Klux Klan marched outside the

tour,

the

an anguished outcry was raised, particularly in

the South. Radio stations sponsored bonfires at

burn

when

York Times

Beatles

and

on with the

to address the controversy at their first press conference.

Lennon explained

that he he

was actually deploring the

fact that

popular culture carried more weight with young people than religion,
adding,

'I

wasn't saying that the Beatles are bigger, or better than Jesus

Christ as a person, or

what

this.'

And, more or

The
when

and

said

tour had

made

it

God

as a thing,

was wrong, or

its

a firecracker

Beatles looked

they

it

less,

it

or whatever

it is. I

just said

was taken wrong, and now

it's all

he apologized.

tense

moments, including

a concert in

Memphis

exploded during the performance. Each of the

around

to see if

one of the others had been

shot.

But

through the tour without incident. By the time they

took the stage

at

Candlestick Park in San Francisco on 29 August -

the final concert of the tour

- they had

and when the tour ended they went

resolved not to tour again,

their separate ways.

Lennon had

accepted Richard Lester's invitation to star with Michael Crawford

How I Won

the War, an anti-war film he

and Spain. McCartney, with Martin's


The Family Way, an

was shooting

help,

composed

in

a filmscore for

attractive if broadly derivative collection

pieces scored mostly for classical brass

and

in

Germany
of short

string ensembles. Harrison

148

The Beatles

more about

flew to India to learn


to visit

the

And

sitar.

Starr flew to Spain

Lennon.

They reconvened

Abbey Road

at

to begin their next

run of

on 24 November. For the occasion, Lennon brought along

sessions

'Strawberry Fields Forever', an exceptional collection of images he

had pieced together

in Spain. In sessions that stretched over five

weeks, the Beatles recorded three very different versions of 'Straw-

The

berry Fields'.

version that was released was a composite of two

arrangements, and

is

one of the most

brilliant collaborations

and George Martin. Lennon's

the four Beatles

and

melody

close to that of the song's

section that begins with the lines, 'living

understanding

on

all

you

see.'

On

ideas.

the

and fourth
alright;

first pass,

in the verse:

mean,

it's

He

seems to have written the music

in fact, the only

'That

is

not too bad.'

finished version, but the last

second section - the

easy with eyes closed, mis-

is

mumbles and hums,

these early tapes, he

between

demonstration

but unusual chord pro-

tapes, recorded in Spain, capture a graceful

gression

earliest

you

complete

can't,

The

lines

were the third

you know, tune

third line

was expanded

made

to 'that

first:

and discarding

starting

in but

think

is, I

it's

to the

it

it's

not too bad.'

By

Lennon returned

the time

built

around the

sion,

which functioned

take

you down,

and nothing

to

London, the song had two

verses

original chord progression, plus a second progresas a bridge,

accompanying the

lines 'Let

'cause I'm going to Strawberry Fields, nothing

to get

hung

about.'

He would add

me

is real,

another verse before

the formal sessions began, but in the meantime, he experimented

with arrangements, trying out different kinds of accompanying

styles,

and even adding spacey sounds from

in-

a mellotron,

an electronic

strument that uses tapes of standard instrumental sounds to produce


semi-orchestral timbres.

The
and has

Beatles' first attempt,

though

change of texture on every

the song begins with

panied by an

Lennon singing

eerie, slightly

mellotron gives
bass line from

way

There

the 'Living

reedy mellotron.

On

is
is

is

a beauty,

no introduction:
easy' verse,

the second

accom-

verse, the

to Lennon's acoustic guitar, a gorgeously slinky

McCartney and

they reach the 'Let

clearly unpolished,
verse.

me

take

light

drumming from

you down'

Starr.

When

section, Lennon's vocal

is

double-tracked, and Harrison brings in a stridently trebly slide guitar.

Towards

Sgt.

Pepper 1966-7

149

And

most

then, in the

alluring

moment

of this version, the verse

beginning, 'Always, no sometimes think

it's

me,

is

accompanied by

the exquisite three-part vocal harmonies the Beatles had used so effectively in 'Here,

There and Everywhere. The bridge returns

and the mellotron, playing

again,

compressed version of the verse chords,

brings the recording to a close.

Inventive though this version was,

Four days

later,

Lennon was unhappy with

more

instrumentation, plus mellotron. In this tighter, heavier,

were the vocal harmonies and the slinkiness of the bass

drumming was more complex. More

Starr's

The mellotron

radically reconfigured.

introduction,
the 'Let

me

at the start

But

its

take

after

mulling

it

Two

work

days'

song

to

its

And now

logical place

Lennon decided

He

to

asked Martin to

write an arrangement for orchestral instruments, and

new

itself

yielded a finished version.

over for about a week,

the Beatles produced a

And

was turned into an

reedy timbre exchanged for a flutey sound.

approach the song from yet another direction.

December

line.

crucially, the

finale

you down' section was moved up

of the song.

electric

between verses were dropped. Gone too

version, the textural changes

was

it.

they began again, this time using their traditional

on

and

basic track, this time includ-

ing cymbals recorded backwards, a hefty array of percussion, and the


exotic

sound of a swordmandel,

week

Martin brought

later,

an arrangement

in

the vocal melody.

a harp-like Indian instrument.

in four

which the

trumpets and three

cellos offer

When Lennon

cellos to play

an arching counterpoint to

overdubbed

his forceful,

nuanced

lead vocal, the recording was finished.

Or

so

Martin believed.

On

reflection,

be a good idea to have the song begin in


its

orchestral guise.

He was

not about to

Lennon thought
its

start

anew;

it

could be done: the two recordings were

and tempos. By sheer

might

his suggestion to

Martin was that he prepare an edit of versions two and

doubted

it

rock version and end in

luck, the orchestral version

three.

Martin

in different keys

was both

higher in pitch than the electric version. By slowing

it

faster

and

down and

speeding up the other, Martin matched both key and tempo.

The

point where the rock band texture metamorphoses into the tapestry
of brass, strings, backwards sounds

exactly sixty seconds into the song.

and unusual timbres takes place

150

The Beatles

'Strawberry Fields Forever', like 'Rain',


attitude ('nothing to get

hung

Army

refers to a Salvation

hood home. Lennon

more an expression of

is

about') than anything else, but

its title

hostel in Liverpool, near Lennon's child-

uses the

name

Never Knows' and 'She Said She

purely for

Said' played

its

'Tomorrow

imagery.

with imagery too, but

with 'Strawberry Fields Forever', Lennon has sighted a new goal:


lyrics that

have greater emotional resonance than

literary sense,

and

music that seems to spring naturally from the wordplay (even though,

music came

in this case, the

A few

first).

days after 'Strawberry Fields Forever' was completed,

McCartney brought
'Penny Lane',

in

a lighter

another song with a Liverpool connection,

song which, unlike

its

Though more
made

a basic track that


at half speed,

one plain -

harmonium and

method
tracks

that

named.

Fields'.

McCartney, working

brought together three piano parts -

one with amplification and reverberation,

one recorded
a

it is

conventional on the surface, 'Penny Lane' began even

more experimentally than 'Strawberry


alone,

counterpart, describes

which

in picturesque detail the Liverpool street for

would become

various percussion effects. In a working

typical in the

months

to

come, the four

on which McCartney laboured were mixed down

tape track, opening

up the

rest for

to a single

overdubs.

Before the song was finished, there would be more piano, guitar

and

and harmony

bass, lead

brass.

The most

Baroque instrument
burg Concerto No.

Mason

sound

in a televised

2,

to play

a vaudeville-style

on

Opposite, McCartney

like the

performance of Bach's Branden-

'When

song McCartney revived from


all

complete

I'm Sixty-Four',
his catalogue

at the start

'Strawberry Fields' were released as a single, removing

when

consideration as album tracks.

began

recording; by 1967, he had

become

quite adept.

for

George

They would be amply

replaced, but progress

reminded

and

them from

was slow

at first. In

Here

he plays through a new

song

EMI

material was overdue, so 'Penny Lane'

barely played keyboards


the Beatles

of

of 1967, and

beginning of a fascinating album. But

new

use the

his song.

teenage compositions, were

the group that

and winds and

was the piccolo trumpet,

and captivated by the sound, he had Martin

'Strawberry Fields', 'Penny Lane' and

looked

effects

McCartney had seen Mason

played by David Mason.

invite

vocals,

distinctive touch, however,

Martin.

early January,

song with

Lennon came

lyrics that

in

with

touched on

A Day in the Life', an unfinished

a friend's recent

death in a car acci-

Towards

Sgf.

Pepper 1966-7

151

The Beatles

152

dent, a

news report about potholes

recent film,

How I Won

song, but

lacked a bridge. But

it

the War.

It

in Lancashire,

was a

and on Lennon's

slow, hauntingly beautiful

McCartney

also

had

fragment -

song about waking up, catching a bus and slipping into dream - that

was

easily joined to

current too. In the

Lennon's spacier song. There was a druggy under-

McCartney

ately after a cigarette


McCartney

tried his

hand

at

conducting several times

is

song, the dreaming begins immedi-

smoked.

And

Lennon's sections before and

after the

McCartney contribution end with

you

They wanted something unusual

on'.

the line,

'I'd

love to turn

to follow that line, but in

during the sessions for Sgt.

Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club

the absence of specific ideas, they played a twenty-four-bar

Band. Here, with Martin at

that could be overlaid later.

his side,

he explains

his

Starr's

drum

parts

vamp

Meanwhile, they tailored what they had.

were carefully orchestrated and re-recorded, and

requirements to the horn


players hired to play on the

album's

title

track.

McCartney

replaced both his vocal and his original 'provisional'

bassline with

one that was more flowingly

discursive.

Towards

Sgt.

Pepper 1966-7

153

McCartney

Early in February,
song's

empty space with

hit

upon

was that each musician would play from


not at the same speed

(ideally

the idea of filling the

cacophonous orchestral crescendo. His idea


his lowest to his highest note

neighbour), getting louder along

as his

the way. Martin hired forty musicians from

were given props -

masks,

false noses,

create a circus-like atmosphere.

London

of a

bits

who

orchestras,

costume -

gorilla

With Martin and McCartney

to

taking

turns conducting, the orchestra recorded one crescendo for the

middle of the work, and another for the end.

Martin has said that the musicians, drawn mostly from the Royal
Philharmonic and London Philharmonic, had never before been
asked to play music in which only their lowest and highest notes

were given, and

in

which they were

to play independently of other

musicians. Yet in classical music circles, the idea was hardly new.

The American composer John Cage had


the fields of indeterminacy for years,

among

already been labouring in

and McCartney has

Cage

listed

And Krzysztof
had won considerable

the composers he was listening to at the time.

Penderecki, a leader of the Polish avant garde,


attention in Europe in the early 1960s for

chamber and

orchestral

works that used indeterminate scoring.


For a pop record, though, this was distinctly radical. But the
orchestral session raised another

problem how

crescendo, which cuts off abruptly

on

to resolve the final

top note and seems to

its

hum

demand

a follow-up.

E major

chord. But a few days later they decided they wanted some-

The

Beatles' first solution

hummed

thing more powerful, and replaced the

same chord played on


tion

and

three pianos

was overdubbed on

all

was

to

the final

version with the

harmonium. This configura-

four tracks of the tape, and the mixing

board faders were slowly raised so that the sound would be sustained
as the

chord faded away. In the end, the chord lasted

seconds - a

fifth

the length of

A Day in

the Life'

fifty-three

and nearly half the

running time of 'Please Please Me'.

works by the time

Several other songs were in the


Life'

was

finished,

and one of them, McCartney's

Lonely Hearts Club Band', gave the album


duces an old-time concert band, in
give a concert.

It

had occurred

Beatles could step back

from

to

its

its

the

'Sgt. Pepper's

focus.

The song

intro-

twentieth year and about to

McCartney

their

A Day in

that for this

album

the

Fab Four image by pretending to

154

The Beatles

would introduce the album, and

be the Sgt. Pepper band. This song

would be the band's

the rest

stage show. Later

the

show concept could be sharpened

the

end of the

it

model of sorts

in the

Beach Boys' Pet Sounds,

album on which Brian Wilson, the groups

distanced the band from

its

surf music image.

had the emotional depth

part,

toward, and

occurred to him that

the song were reprised near

record.

McCartney had
the

if-

its

principal composer,
Its lyrics,

for the

quirkily-structured songs boasted colourful instru-

mentation and sound

effects, to say

nothing of the Beach Boys'

When

magnificent vocal harmonies, which rivalled the Beatles' own.

McCartney heard

As

the

'how

reaction was,

album

are

time of its release in 1966, his

at the

we going

turned out, Wilson

it

most

had been working

that the Beatles

to top this?'

later said that

he was inspired to make

Pet Sounds after hearing the Beatles' Rubber Soul. But Sgt. Pepper

brought

this creative give-and-take to

an end. Wilson's plan was to

respond with Smile, a collection of material

more complex than

Pet Sounds,

and meant

lyrically

and musically

to be as daring as Sgt.

But Wilson's excessive drug use (among other personal

Pepper.

problems) caught up with him during the sessions, which ground to


a halt
it

when he had

lasted, the

breakdown. Nevertheless, for

a nervous

as

long as

competitive interaction between the Beatles, the Beach

Boys, the Byrds,

Bob Dylan and

handful of other rock musicians

unquestionably helped transform the best pop music of this time

from teenage ephemera into durable


For the Beatles themselves,

McCartney

eclipsed

Lennon

Sgt.

art.

Pepper was the

dominant

as the

Lennon had thought long and hard about


break in Spain.

The

aspects of studio

last

work

the Beatles during his film

tour had been an ordeal, and there were

that he

extent he was content to

moment when

force in the band.

sit

found tedious

as well.

To

a great

around Weybridge smoking marijuana,

watching television and reading.

If

nothing

else, a residual

sense of

competition with McCartney drove him on.

He

was, in

Beatles'

fact, at a

turning point

songs of love and jealousy

'Tomorrow Never Knows' was

in his

songwriting.

now seemed

The

early

pointless to him.

the beginning of a

new

direction,

and

during the current sessions he had already come up with two masterpieces.

The

question he wrestled with was

this:

what was worth

Towards

Sgt.

Pepper

966 - 7

155

writing about?

The

Fields Forever'

worked

stream-of-consciousness imagery in 'Strawberry

ing on that, or forcing

Some

model.

cal

of

it

nicely as a song lyric, but there


'A

it.

If

was no count-

provided a more practi-

in the Life'

had been suggested,

by reading the newspaper.

and transformed,

Day

as the

songs

news items could be

first

filtered,

line says,

toyed with

so could other things.

Thus, Lennons three remaining non-collaborative contributions


to Sgt. Pepper

from

were

all

inspired by seemingly

'Being for the Benefit of

lyric for

Mr

a Victorian circus poster that

Corn

from

And

Flakes.

'Lucy

in the

drawing by Lennons son

a scene in Alices

mundane

was

lifted

Lennon found

'Good Morning Good Morning' was


for

Kite!'

items.

The

almost verbatim
an antique shop.

in

inspired by an advertisement

Sky with Diamonds' took

its title

and some of its imagery from

Julian,

Adventures in Wonderland, augmented,

clearly,

by

Lennons experiences with psychedelic drugs.

What Lennon

did with these modest inspirations was stunning.

His music for 'Mr


a sonic circus.

and

his engineer,

snipped
at

turned the two-dimensional poster copy into

Kite!'

To produce

the song's unusually festive sound, Martin

Geoff Emerick, took

a tape

of calliope music,

into pieces, threw the pieces in the

it

air,

reassembled them

random, and played the resulting tape backwards. Again, John

Cage was

a predecessor,

his 'Williams

band

Mix'

having used a similar technique to produce

in 1952,

of tape was not the

theatre organ,

although in the Beatles

work

itself,

added by Martin, provided

'Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds'

and musical
in a

texture. Its

boat on a

river,

imagery

is

with tangerine

case, the resulting

but merely embellishment.

is

also

an ideal match of text

remarkably
trees

a perfect finishing touch.

rich: 'Picture yourself

and marmalade

skies'.

On

the journey, one encounters rocking horse people, cellophane flowers,

newspaper

who

taxis

and most importantly,

a girl with kaleidoscope eyes,

appears at the beginning and the end of the song. Lennon later

described the

girl

with kaleidoscope eyes

as a

kind of female saviour,

the kindred spirit he had by then determined that his wife Cynthia

was not.

The
bars by

song's other-worldly

Hammond
cross

atmosphere

is

created in the opening

McCartney, who plays an angular, chromatic


organ, electronically enhanced so that

between

it

figure

sounds

harpsichord and an electric guitar. Like the

on

like a
first

ver-

156

The

sion of 'Strawberry Fields', the texture builds slowly:

first

the organ,

then Lennon's lead vocal (altered by using both Artificial Double

Tracking and speed variation) and McCartney's

bass. Starr, initially

using only brushes on cymbals, turns up only at the end of the


first verse.

Normally, the Beatles would have repeated the


here, but instead they

move

new key and

into a

first

verse

melody, in which Lennon again approaches McCartney's


ideal.

Both these sections

are in three-quarter time,

melody ends, three tom-tom and


into

something entirely new -

beats in a bar)

of the
in

first

two

which the

drum

bass

change

in

melody

present a second

beats

but

from

'single note'

as the

second

Starr lead

metre (from three to four

and yet another key change. Suddenly, the hazy world

way

verses gives

song's title

is

sung

to the bright sunlight of the refrain,


as a celebratory

proclamation.

McCartney's songs here show the penchant for imaginative


storytelling that he

had pursued so

Lennon, he was looking


about

in the

young runaway suggested

McCartney's

on

'She's

imagery, 'She's Leaving


flirts

is

and

Revolver,

his subjects.

like

A story

Leaving Home', the next

line of string-accompanied ballads.

ation in 'Eleanor Rigby'

McCartney

effectively

newspapers for

in

The theme of alien-

repeated, but in place of that song's stark

Home'

presents a complete narrative.

with compassion for the parents here. In parenthet-

ical lines,

sung by Lennon and Harrison, they explain that they have

struggled

all

and

their lives to give their daughter

are left asking themselves

what they did wrong. To which

McCartney, Lennon and Harrison respond,


that the

young woman has

whatever she wanted,

left

home

at the

end of the song,

simply to have fun,

itself

regarded as a higher value in those rebellious days.

His other

efforts are generally lighter in spirit. 'Fixing a Hole'

is

bright-textured bit of introspection, almost Lennonesque in character.

'Lovely Rita' describes a date with a meter maid. 'Getting Better'


a collaboration in

from school and

which McCartney

his

independence

mellowing with

age, while

Lennon,

and claims

to be over

it.

confesses to wife-beating

McCartney

celebrates his

also collaborated

on 'With

a Little

is

interestingly,

Lennon and

Help From

My

Friends', for Starr to sing.

Harrison brought two songs to the

Sgt.

Pepper sessions. One, the

dark-textured 'Only a Northern Song', was recorded and set aside,

Towards

Sgf.

157

Pepper 1966-7

-</<U^

<.

Submarine, the

The Beatles did not write

to be revived a year later for inclusion in Yellow

musical notation, but

length cartoon for which the Beatles half-heartedly agreed to provide

George Martin

did. This

sheet ot manuscript paper,

autographed by
Beatles, contains

score

all

four

Martins

dictated by

McCartney

rew new songs.


Hidden on the soundtrack album,
i

looked, but in
effects that

Benefit of

fact,

make

Mr

it

it is

often over-

features a fabulously tactile layer of electronic

the song as alluring in

its

own way

as

'Being for the

Kite!'

- for the

compact French horn break


jt.

hill-

Pepper's Lonely

Hearts Club Band'

Harrison's

more

significant effort

was 'Within You Without You, a

lengthy meditation on the Indian philosophy that had lately captured


his imagination. Its

backing combines Indian instruments

in

dialogue

with a vibrant string score by Martin. At the time the album was
released, this five-minute apotheosis

gence; even Harrison hinted as

patch of laughter
hindsight,

it

at the

of raga-rock seemed an indul-

much by

including a self-deprecating

end of the song. Yet

it

has aged well, and in

seems one of the most sophisticated compositions on

this extraordinary collection.

The Beatles

158

Early in the album's running order

At a party to introduce
Sgf.

Pepper's Lonely Hearts

Club Band

sporting the matching


hairstyles that

been

their

suits

had

trademark

through their

last

in the third song,

the Beatles use a

word

'Lucy in

unveil the

new album's

gatefold sleeve.

up the

that perfe ctly

sums

of Sgt. Pepper: kaleid oscope. In terms of technical

feeli ng

trickery

and instrumental

ous. Just about everything

colour, they
is

were

at their

sped up, slowed

down

most adventuror compressed.

Harrison's Indian instruments are used both as background timbre

public

outing, the previous year


-

to the press,

the Beatles - no longer

and

the

Sky with Diamonds' -

and

as centre-pieces.

'Fixing a Hole'.

both the

title

There

cut and

ber orchestra on 'A

The

harpsichord holds the middle ground in


are strings

on

'She's

Leaving Home', brass on

'Good Morning Good Morning', and

Day

cham-

in the Life'.

tape effects are ambitious too. Besides the collage in 'Being for

the Benefit of

Mr

Kite!' the Beatles

electronic menagerie to

and Martin fashioned an amazing

stampede across the soundstage

at the

'Good Morning Good Morning'. Out of the stampede jumps

end of
a cat's

miaow, edited onto a dog's bark. The sound of an orchestra tuning


opens the record, and on both the

title

song and

its

reprise,

applause

Towards

Sgt.

Pepper 1966-7

159

and crowd noise

create the illusion of a concert.

quirky touch. After the long


Beatles
a

appended

final

There was

chord of 'A Day

also a final

in the Life', the

high-pitched (fifteen kilocycle) tone, leading to

few seconds of noise, laughter and

chatter.

On

the vinyl LP, this

explosion of noise was cut into a continuous groove around the label,
so that the Beatles could be heard chortling continuously until the
listener lifted the stylus

from the

disc.

Since Rubber Soul, the Beatles had overseen their cover


it

was

clear that the cover

art,

and

of Sgf. Pepper had to be an exceptional

production. Lennon and McCartney told the

artist Peter

Blake about

the album's concept, and suggested the notion of an old-fashioned

group portrait of the

fictional

Pepper band

as

they might appear after

playing a concert in a park. Blake's idea was that the band should be

surrounded by

its

audience, which should include people the Beatles

They came up with

considered important or influential.


musicians, gurus, writers, visual
celebrities,

each.

The

and Blake made


celebrity

artists,

a life-size

list

of

cardboard representation of

crowd was assembled behind

a bass

the ornate Sgt. Pepper logo. Immediately behind the

the 1967 Beatles, in colourful, silk military

drum with

drum

stood

band uniforms, sporting

moustaches and holding orchestral instruments. To their

wax

comedians and sport and film

left

were

figures of the Beatles circa 1965.

Released on

June 1967,

Sgt.

Pepper immediately became the focus

of microscopic analysis, not only by observers of popular culture, but


also

by writers and musicians whose

In truth,
real

its

home

turf was classical music.

concept album status was only skin-deep: there was no

connection between the songs, other than their supposed place

in the

Pepper band's stage

set. Still,

the concept

took root with the most inventive bands. The

album

Who,

idea quickly

for example,

used a radio programme format, complete with parody advertise-

ments between songs,


in

October.

A year

later the

two 'rock operas' by


the Kinks,

who

as the structure for

its

The

Who

Sell Out,

group would record Tommy, the

guitarist

recorded
first

of

and composer, Pete Townshend. And

rode the British Invasion wave with a run of simple,

catchy hit singles from 1964 to 1966, had also matured, and were

about to

start a

run of concept projects that began with The Village

Green Perservation Society

and

several operettas.

in

1968 and included a rock opera, Arthur,

160

The Beatles

Sgt.

Pepper quickly became

counterculture,
report from

it

was

less fanciful:

things to

a manifesto

all

people.

relax

and

float

in

a place

the budding

one could

'Tomorrow Never Knows',

downstream'. But

tangible proof that the Beatles

and composers.

To

of drug consciousness, an advance

some magical plane of existence -

by taking Lennon's advice


your mind,

all

it

was

also

find

to 'turn off

something

had come of age

as poets

2
(D

o
c
Q

3
Q.

A
O
Q.

o
00

The White Album was a funny


the time they
all

had a huge

to record.

the

same

one, because at

came back from abroad and they


collection

ofsongs they wanted

And they wanted them


time.

By

this

done

all at

time they were four indi-

viduals with their individual songs, wanting


to record
In

August 1967, the Beatles

and entourage

to

of the other

meet

George Martin, 1993

with the Maharishi


Yogi, a master of

Transcendental Meditation

who promised

assistance

set out for

Bangor, Wales,

Mahesh

them with the

people rather than being a group.

to

show

them an untapped fount


inner creative potential.

of

162

The Beatles

Mystery Tours and Discord 1967-8

Even

used to refer to

at their peak, the Beatles

No

they believed would eventually come.


staving

it

off

by playing

And

pronouncements.

it

not because the group had


collective will

had

music

safe in their

indeed,

when

'the downfall' that

one could accuse them of


or, lately, in their

'the downfall'

lost its following,

did come,

public
it

was

but because the band's

shattered. Ironically, the seeds of 'the downfall'

were planted virtually

at the

moment

of the Beatles' greatest

artistic success.

Early on,
elled

when

they packed into a van night after night and trav-

between performances, they became a cohesive

band but

But that was when they were nineteen,

a brotherhood.

twenty, twenty-one years old. Their


tied

up

plenty

in the
else.

unit, not just

lives,

band. There was nothing

They each had

interests

public and personal, were

else.

But by 1967 there was

of their own. Lennon, Starr and

Harrison had families and lived outside London. McCartney,

London and was

single, lived- in

man

still

about town.

Harrison, drawn to Indian music, culture and philosophy, was


able to interest the others in his

was

still

testing the degree to

into his Beatles work.

He had

rock musicians, and while

new

obsession to

which he could

some

extent, but he

integrate this interest

also cultivated friendships

at the Beatles' sessions

he

among

felt like

other

Lennon's

and McCartney's water boy, outside the group he commanded


considerable respect.

For Lennon

bored with

live

this

was

making

the routine of

a particularly unsettling time.

performance

in 1966, a year later

Having grown

he was bored with

recordings. Increasingly estranged from

Cynthia and enamoured of drug experimentation, he withdrew into


a

world of his own.

Still,

brillance

when

asked to

come up with

pressed.

telecast just three

he could rouse himself to moments of

'All

weeks

You Need

is

Love'

is

a perfect example:

song the Beatles could sing on


after the release

a live global

of Sgt. Pepper, he tapped into

163

Mystery Tours and Discord 1967-8

the Zeitgeist

and came up with the

anthem

perfect

for the flower-

power summer.
had no particular ambitions outside the group, although

Starr

having been singled out for praise


the

word out

would be

that he

in the Beatles'

two movies, he put

By

interested in an acting role.

the end

of 1967 he agreed to play a cameo role in Candy. Within the group,


his

drumming provided

suggested

demanded

little,

and

a distinctive

and was content

less,

xMcCartney, by contrast, had

come

but he

essential element,

into his

to serve as required.

own on

the

last

few

albums, and he was eager to continue the explorations that the

had

Beatles

new

ideas.

started.

And

One

see

all

he was the one

this point,

Lennon and Harrison

difficult to get

future.

At

over the next two years, he

who came up

would

find

it

to share his vision

with

increasingly

of the Beatles'

of his ideas in 1967 was Apple, a company meant to over-

the Beatles activities, including not only their musical endeav-

ours, but everything

from merchandising

other musicians and

artists.

on the back cover of Sgt.

the small-print credits

was incorporated

in

to sponsoring projects

by

A hint of the concept could be found

May, and by

boutique, a film production

early 1969

company and

it

Pepper.

in

The company

was running

a fashion

a record label.

Epstein opposed the idea of Apple for understandable reasons. His

management

ship
his

basis

Now that the

would be renewed.

work was

nil:

a recording session,

leave the

Lennon

Pepper cover, making


Apple's

During

it

with plenty of

America

His influence on their

a suggestion

during

h e objected

and

to the ornate Sgt.

he was not on their wavelength.

in April 1967, just after the Sgt.

fill it

with actors and

Pepper

television film.

extras,

The

and tour around

camera crew. They would each write short episodes,

room

for improvisation.

would be devoted

original notes, jotted


detailed.

had stopped touring,

McCartney dreamed up an hour-long

England with

the relation-

to see to the percentages

recently,

clear that

Beatles could hire a bus,

film

him

endeavour would be a new project of McCartney's.

first

a trip to

sessions,

told

music to them. Most

Beatles

irrelevant.

when he made

early on,

on 30 September,

expire

or even whether

primary managerial function was

creative

would

contract with the Beatles

and he was not sure on what

He had

to

And

of course, some of the

performances of their

on the plane

already settled

trip

latest songs.

His

back to England, were quite

on Magical Mystery Tour as the

title,

164

The Beatles

and had the theme song written by the time he presented the idea
the others
a

sequence

on
at

25 April.

to

stripper,

an army recruiting station, a marathon, and a labora-

tory scene. His cast


a fat

His notes also specified a scene with a

woman and

list

included a courier, a driver, a busty hostess,

a small

man.

All these things were included in

the film.

Agreeing to the plan, the Beatles began working on the

For their self-produced

- complete with highway sound

Magical Mystery Tour


television film, the Beatles

rented a tour bus,


with actors,

filled

title

song

brass flourishes

They were

juggling

it

another project too: the soundtrack for the Yellow Submarine anim-

and cruised

script,

and elegant

five weeks before Sgt. Pepper reached the shops.

ated film, which

around England with a


sketchy

effects

hoping that

would go

into production late in the year. Apart

from McCartney, who read the

script

and offered suggestions, the

spontaneous adventure

would unfold before


cameras.

It

Beatles were not particularly interested in this cartoon. Their obliga-

their

tion involved providing a few

didn't.

*'

*2,

new

songs and allowing some of their

,ns

^WR^fr

^&m$*

yMH

ViitM

ffr

N^
It^Jj
.

EL&rJ

-1

SJMiiL
\JKkc:i
IjtejyV-

P*

Ski
~il

*\
-

jg*y

"

165

Mystery Tours and Discord 1967-8

For part of the

'I

Am

the

Walrus' sequence, the


Beatles

donned animal

costumes:

left

to right:

McCartney, Harrison and


Starr, with

Lennon, as the

walrus, front

and

centre.

recent recordings to be used

was complete, they agreed


So

make

and turned

would be

popsy

'All

left

used. Also taped in

You're a Rich Man', a

When

appearance

over from the

May and

Lennon-McCartney

early

Up

heavy metal precursor,

'It's

All

the Number)', an evocation of a lounge

Whether

was released on

The
All

Pepper

June were 'Baby

Too Much'. They

a single

with 'Let

show gone

is

Love', the

group had worked on

until 1970,

it

when

It Be'.

two weeks of June

Beatles devoted the last

You Need

also

Know My Name

or not this was intended for Yellow Submarine,

ended up on hold - but with periodic touch-ups it

Sgt.

collaboration; McCartney's

began work on one of Lennon's quirkier songs, 'You

(Look

at the end.

Tour, they set

Together Now', and another Harrison song, a magni-

ficently dense,

haywire.

the production

their attention to Yellow Submarine.

Harrison's 'Only a Northern Song',


sessions,

a screen

song tor Magical Mystery

after taping the title

that project aside

on the soundtrack.

to

to preparing

most rhythmically complex song the

to date,

and one that demanded great delicacy

of texture. Considerable care was lavished on the backing track


against

which the Beatles and studio musicians performed

the global broadcast


ure, the

on

25 June.

song was rush-released

And

live

during

taking advantage of the expos-

as a single.

Needing

a B-side, they

166

The Beatles

The Maharishi Mahesh

raided their Yellow Submarine Hit, and included 'Baby You're a

Yogi, right, holds court,

Rich Man'.

with the Beatles sitting at


It

had been a hectic

year,

and

all

four of the Beatles wanted a

his feet. But their brief stay

at his retreat in Rishikesh,

India,

in

proved a

February 1968,
failure.

By May,

break. So in July they left both Magical Mystery Tour

Submarine hanging and did not return to work


then, their activities were scattered.

and Yellow

until 22 August.

Even

They spent two days working

Lennon and McCartney

announced
and
their

their

that the Beatles

guru had gone

separate ways.

on McCartney's old-timey 'Your Mother Should Know',

for

Magical

Mystery Tour, and then followed Harrison to Bangor, Wales, for


a

seminar on Transcendental Meditation given by the Maharishi

Mahesh

Yogi.

The Maharishi

tion techniques

repeated chant

taught that by using Eastern medita-

- mainly, focusing

one's thoughts

practitioners could have the

on

a mantra, or a

same kind of insights

and visions they were currently getting from drugs.


Their spiritual quest was interrupted, however, by the news that
Brian Epstein had been found dead in his
gust,

London home on 27 Au-

having taken what the coroner ruled was an accidental overdose

of barbiturates. Lennon and Harrison, interviewed by television

Mystery Tours and Discord 1967-8

167

reporters in Bangor, were stunned: with glazed eyes, they repeated

what the Maharishi had told them about the Hindu concept of soul
transmigration. Putting off the question of whether or

how

to replace

Epstein, the Beatles threw themselves fully into Magical Mystery Tour,
for

which they had only recorded two songs. Filming was

on

ii

set to

begin

September, and in the preceding week they began work on

the other songs that

would be used

in the show.

The

first

in the

batch was another tour deforce of nonsense verse from Lennon,

all

new
'I

Am

the Walrus'.

Lennon's

was deliberately incomprehensible, partly because

lyric

after all the analysis recent Beatles recordings

prankster in
less to

him wanted

ponder.

me and we
insight,

are

all

fairly clear.

Eiffel

line,

'I

am

he

as

you

he

are

you

as

are

together', could be rationalized as a philosophical

and 'Crabalocker

been a naughty

something truly meaning-

to give analysts

The opening

were given, the

girl,

you

But what

to

fishwife pornographic priestess

let

boy you

your knickers down' actually seemed

make of 'Semolina

up the

pilchard climbing

Tower'?

Lennon's verse melody wavers chromatically, like the sound of a

European police
'I

am

siren,

and builds

to

an almost cathartic declaration,

the eggman, they are the eggmen,

again, the

combination of the

Beatles'

am

the walrus'.

once

experimentation and Martin's

ear for orchestration yielded the perfect setting.

basic track,

And

Martin overlaid winds and

Over

a fairly bland

strings, plus a choir

which was

asked to produce a variety of effects, ranging from carefully orchestrated sardonic laughter to chanting 'oompah,

your jumper' and

oompah,

stick

it

up

'got one, got one, everybody's got one'. As a final

touch, the Beatles decided, during the mixing sessions, to bring in the

sound of a radio being tuned


a

BBC

half minutes of bizarre lyrics


McCartney and

rendezvous with the


in

and unusual

Gloucester's question, 'What,

longtime girlfriend, the

Maharishi

and stumbled upon

is

after four

noises, the record

and

Bangor

you down,

The

he dead?' and Edgar's immediate,

father; rest you.'

other songs recorded for the

show include McCartney's

melancholy but typically melodic 'Fool on the

Hill',

an easygoing

after

learning of Brian Epstein's

death on 27 August 1967

instrumental credited to

all

four Beatles, called 'Flying', and

Harrison's 'Blue Jay Way', a deliciously

gloomy evocation

ends with

his

actress Jane Asher, leave


their

across frequencies,

performance of Shakespeare's King Lear. Thus,

(abetted

'Sit

168

The Beatles

by organ,

and backwards

cellos

for friends

who

have

lost their

he was renting during a

The

tape) of waiting late into the night

way

visit to

to his house (or actually to

one

Los Angeles).

filming of Magical Mystery Tour was fraught with the prob-

lems one might anticipate

when

a bus full of actors sets off

on an

improvisatory journey, led by four musicians without directorial


experience and varying levels of interest.

26 December,

it

failed disastrously. It was, for

inappropriate holiday

by screening

it

When

fare.

in black

the

one thing,

BBC stacked

But the

BBC

aired

it

on

entirely

the cards against

and white, thereby negating

its

it

and

vivid hues

rendering meaningless the stretches of film that depend on altered


colour registration to

double

EP

in

make

England and

their effect.
as

an LP

The

in the

recording, released as a

USA

(the

first

devoted to songs from the show, the second to recent

snapped up

enthusiastically.

So was the group's new

side

singles)

was
was

single, 'Hello

Goodbye', an upbeat McCartney song recorded during the filming


but not included in the show.

Near the end of the

year,

Harrison was commissioned to compose

a score for the film Wonderwall.

He

responded with a collection of

and Indian music. In January

instrumentals, split between Western

1968 he flew to
there,

some

Bombay

he recorded

his

to

This

on

and while he was

traditional ragas, with the idea of writing

and proposing them

may seem

his soundtrack,

Indian musicians (he did not play himself) in

short pieces, based

lyrics for these

complete

as Beatles songs.

a dubious, perhaps even piratical

approach to

composition; indeed, for the one that was used, 'The Inner Light',
Harrison's approach to the text

was

similarly freehanded. In

Novem-

ber 1967 Juan Mascaro, a

Cambridge scholar of Eastern

Harrison a

'Within You Without You', and a copy of

his

letter praising

religion, sent

book, Lamps ofFire, which included ancient texts from various

sources.

and

Mascaro suggested that Harrison

specifically

from the Tao Te Ching. With only


text to a serene

The

set

some of these

pointed out 'The Inner Light', a

melody

his Indian

other Beatles were taken with

the next single, 'Lady Madonna'.

to music,

poem about wisdom,

slight changes,

Harrison

fitted this

musicians recorded in Bombay.


it,

The

and
first

released

it

as the B-side

be released on a Beatles single, therefore, was a combination of a


traditional Indian

of

Harrison composition to

melody and an ancient Chinese

text.

169

Mystery Tours and Discord 1967-8

McCartney
thumbs up,

gives the double


his sign of

In February,
their studies

all

four Beatles flew to Rishikesh, India, to continue

with the Maharishi. But before they

left,

they filed into

exceptional approval, while

watching a sequence from


the Beatles'

animated

Ye//ow Submarine.

film

Abbey Road once more, adding

new

pleting three other


rollicking, Fats

vocals to 'The Inner Light'

songs. McCartney's 'Lady

Domino-inspired

getic piano playing

and com-

Madonna' was

by McCartney's ener-

track, driven

and overlaid with saxophones and some wild

scatsinging by Lennon,

McCartney and Harrison. Another song

taped during these sessions was 'Hey Bulldog', destined for Yellow

Submarine and

The

real

essentially a riff-based throw-away.

gem, however, was 'Across the Universe', another of

Lennon's musical diary entries. Curiously,


released for nearly
'Yesterday',

two

was composed

Lennon explained

it,

in a

The

first lines

recording lay un-

sudden burst of

McCartney's

inspiration.

As

he had spent an exasperating evening arguing

with Cynthia, and after she


once.

this

years. 'Across the Universe', like

fell

asleep, the lyrics

perfectly evoke the

came

to

him

all at

argument from Lennon's

point of view, yet to a listener ignorant of the song's provenance, they

stand as a stream of lovely images:

170

The Beatles

LEE MINOFF HEINZ KDIIMANN AL BRODAX GEORGE

IHINN1I!

171

Mystery Tours and Discord 1967-8

theatrical poster for

Ye//ow Submarine shows the


entire cast of

animated

characters, with the

good

guys (Young Fred, Jeremy

Boob, the Beatles and Old


Fred) on the

bad guys

left,

and

the

(various species of

Blue Meanie) on the

right.

172

The Beatles

Words are floiving out


a paper cup,

like endless rain into

They

while they pass,

slither

away

they slip

across the universe.

To accommodate
melody,

lyrical

McCartney's
with 'Lady

odd metres of the poem, Lennon

the

as beautiful

and wrenching

But he was

ballads.

Madonna and 'The

'Hey Bulldog' reserved

in

its

way

uses a gently

as the best

of

with the recording, so

dissatisfied

Inner Light' sharing the single and

for Yellow Submarine, 'Across the Universe'

was shelved.

There was another autobiographical clue buried


'Thoughts meander

like a restless

sang, using an image

- wind

was

Ono had come

inside a letterbox,'

in a letterbox

the Japanese avant-garde artist


tion' pieces.

wind

to

Yoko

Ono

included the composers La

Low and Dick

Higgins, the

artists

and Geoffrey Hendricks, and

Lennon had .attended


few months

earlier,

in her writings

and

'instruc-

York, where she

collective

of conceptual

George Maciunas, Takako Saito

at least a

a preview

Lennon

similar to those used by

Monte Young, Jackson Mac


dozen others

enced by the music of John Cage and the

London from New

member of Fluxus, an underground

artists that

in the lyric.

art

who

were

influ-

of Marcel Duchamp.

of Ono's show

at the

and had been taken with Ono's

Indica Gallery
deliberately

outrageous sculptures and performance pieces. Their paths crossed


several

more

times,

whereupon they began

a peculiar correspondence,

sending each other aphoristic postcards. They continued their corres-

pondence while Lennon and the other Beatles

sat at the Maharishi's

feet in Rishikesh.

The

Beatles

had gamely followed Harrison on

his spiritual quest,

but the Rishikesh expedition brought their interest to an end. Starr


left after

a few

eleven days, complaining about the food.

more weeks, but abandoned Rishikesh

The

others lasted

precipitately after the

Maharishi came under suspicion of making advances to one of the

women

in the class, the actress

Mia

Farrow.

They announced

their

break with the Maharishi, but continued to say - though with muted

enthusiasm - that they considered meditation beneficial. Indeed, they

had ample proof of that. During and immediately


sojourn, Lennon,

after their

McCartney and Harrison were unusually

Indian

prolific,

173

Mystery Tours and Discord 1967-8

and even

Starr finished a

song that the others considered acceptable.

This bumper crop would yield The Beatles - the double-disc

known

popularly

Harrison's

in

these were

single

'Hey Jude'.

May, when the Beatles gathered

bungalow

twenty-three

set

'White Album' because of its blank cover, the

Pepper and the

antithesis ofSgt.

Work began

as the

in Esher, to rehearse

Kinfauns,

at

and make

test

new Lennon, McCartney and Harrison

dropped before the

official sessions

began

recordings of

songs. Four of
at

Abbey Road

later that

month, and of the nineteen that were formally recorded,

two were

left

unreleased.

That

left

seventeen of the Esher songs, more

than enough for a conventional album. But the Beatles continued to


write during the sessions, which lasted from

May

to October,

Most of the Esher


Lennon's

lyrical

surplus eventually turned

up

and by

new

the time they were finished they had recorded thirty-three

songs.

in other forms.

'Child of Nature' was later rewritten as 'Jealous Guy',

and appeared on

his

Imagine album in 1971. McCartney's 'Junk' was

included on his eponymous solo debut in 1970. Harrison, having

brought seven songs to the

ended up with three

sessions,

gave 'Sour Milk Sea to Jackie Lomax, one of the

leftovers.

first artists

He

signed

by Apple Records. His 'Not Guilty' turned up on George Harrison

and

in 1979,

'Circles'

was included on Gone Troppo

quirky avant-garde piece by Lennon, 'What's the

in 1982.

Only

New Mary Jane?',

was never released commercially.

A few notable changes occurred in


sessions began.

Back from

India, they

an amorphous concept into a


set up,

talk

would

artists to
it

production company. Offices were

about the venture

where they described Apple

but

began transforming Apple from

and plans were announced. Lennon and McCartney flew

New York to
that

real

the Beatles' lives just before the

'Western

to

of television interviews,

Communism'

company

share the Beatles' wealth by offering opportunities for

develop their potential. This magnanimity was short-lived,

lasted long

largesse

as

in a series

enough

to turn

Apple into

money

drain, as

was tapped by both sincere hopefuls and outright con

Apple Records turned out

There were

to be a

early hits with the

its

artists.

remarkably eclectic enterprise.

Welsh folk-singer Mary Hopkin,

the Beatlesque rock

band Badfinger and the American folk-rock

singer James Taylor.

The

organist and singer Billy Preston and the

soul-singer Doris Troy filled out the

rhythm and blues end of the

174

The Beatles

One

of the

public

first

ventures of Apple, the

production and

merchandising company
that the Beatles
in

1967,

boutique.

from the

formed

was a London
It

was

start:

disastrous

neighbouring

businesses complained

about the psychedelic


mural,

and

the

shop

haemorrhaged money
the Beatles

gave away

until
its

custom-designed stock and


closed

Harrison had introduced the


Beatles to Indian culture,

and although
it

proved

to

for the others

be a fad,

Harrison continued

his

studies of Indian music for

some years
Shankar,

with Ravi

right,

world's master

one

of the

sitarists.

its

doors.

175

Mystery Tours and Discord 1967-8

spectrum.

The Modern

young

British

one of the premier American

Jazz Quartet,

jazz ensembles, recorded

two Apple albums. So did John Tavener,

composer whose music would come into vogue

late 1980s.

Harrison brought in the

well as the

Radha Krishna Temple, which sang

pantheon.

What

two

its first

in the

virtuoso Ravi Shankar, as

sitar

other label could boast this

in praise

stylistic

Hindu

of the

breadth within

years?

Meanwhile,

in

mid-May Lennon and Ono decided


and

fated for each other,

after

that they were

spending a night together, while

Cynthia was away on holiday, they recorded


collaboration, Unfinished Music No.

i:

Two

their first avant-garde

Virgins, a collection

of

atmospheric, seemingly improvisatory instrumental and vocal pieces.

This too would find an outlet on Apple, in a jacket showing the collaborators entirely nude, front

and back.

Lennon and Cynthia separated


by November. From

late

and were frequently

in the

Ono

May, Lennon and

news. Two Virgins, or

naturally the focus of controversy

Lennon's divorce was

final.

and they were divorced

forthwith,

when

A month

it

were inseparable,
cover

its

earlier

Starr.

And when Ono had

November, Lennon documented her hospital


cassette recorder

and

after

Lennon and Ono were

London

arrested for possession of cannabis resin while staying in a

apartment owned by

was

art,

was released soon

a miscarriage in

stay with a portable

released the results (including a tape of the

dying baby's heartbeat)

as part

of Unfinished Music No.

With

2: Life

the Lions.

The

inseparability of

Lennon and Ono extended

ing sessions, to the irritation of the others,


that

who

preferred the privacy

had been part of the group's working method.

blame

Ono

for the

to Beatles record-

It is

complex. Yet her presence clearly increased the tension


cians' relationship.

belief that as she

collaborators

of a new

Ono

stumbled into

it

this

and Lennon were now

that way,

Lennon

far

more

in the

musi-

atmosphere with the naive

collaborators, Lennon's other

would happily follow Lennon's

artistic sensibility.

might see

absurd to

breakup of the Beatles; the reasons are

lead

and

also apparently

avail

themselves

thought they

and he was deeply wounded by what he

later

described as McCartney's and Harrison's dismissive treatment of Ono.


It

became

of his

life.

a resentment that he dwelled

on

in interviews for the rest

176

in

The Beatles

1968, Lennon and Yoko

Ono, soon
wife,

to

be

second

his

declared that they had

nothing to hide, and proved


it

by posing nude

cover of

Two

for the

their controversial

Virgins album, a

collection of avant-garde

collages.

Banned

places,

was

it

brown paper

sold

in
in

many
a

sleeve.

Still, it is

likely that the

'White Album' sessions would have seen

the fragmentation of the group even without

Lennon, McCartney and Harrison were by


only by their
the

band worked

particularly

when
first

own

when

songs.

together,

and

the intensive session


it

fact

is,

point fully engaged

work began,

continued to do so periodically,

the basic tracks for a

new song were

started, or

song demanded a sense of live interaction. But within the

week, a

new working method had


found working on

Beatles could be

studios, while another


in

When

Ono. The

this

charge of his

tributing

where

own

evolved. Often, one or

two

song in one of the Abbey Road

worked elsewhere

in the building.

songs, with the others drifting in

Each was

and

out, con-

necessary.

This seemingly chaotic approach proved quite

efficient, yet

the

apparent insularity of the four musicians did not prevent disputes.

During the

sessions for McCartney's

Harrison were

at

'Hey Jude', McCartney and

odds over Harrison's desire to add

a bluesy

answer-

ing figure between the vocal lines. Harrison ended up sitting out the
session,

was

spending

his

time in the recording booth with Martin. There

also a battle over 'Revolution', a

Lennon song

released as the

177

Mystery Tours and Discord 1967-8

B-side of 'Hey Jude'.


version and

wanted

Lennon

first

to release

Harrison objected that

it

it

recorded a slow, mostly acoustic

But McCartney and

as a single.

Lennon

lacked the necessary energy, and

acquiesced, remaking the song as one of the most raucous of all


Beatles tracks.

Other disputes erupted regularly during the


Emerick, an engineer (and

team since

And

ous.

later

producer)

found the

Geoff
Martin's

atmosphere was so poison-

Revolver, resigned because the

Starr

sessions.

who had been on

sessions so dispiriting that

on 22 August he

quit the band, convinced that he was not needed. In a way, he was
right.

During

to film

Still,

promotional

single

first

on

two week absence, McCartney did much of

his nearly

drumming.

the

its

they coaxed
clips for

new Apple

him back on 4 September,

in time

'Hey Jude' and 'Revolution'. The group's

label, these

two songs offered

a glimpse

Abbey Road. The musical

of what the Beatles were up to

at

tions were clear enough: apart

from comparatively subtle chamber

orchestra assistance

on 'Hey Jude', these songs showed the

a straightforward rock band,

with no overt studio

trickery,

implica-

Beatles as

backwards

tapes, exotic instruments or psychedelic sounds.

There were a few new

twists.

McCartney's 'Hey Jude'

cular advice to the five-year-old Julian

song and make

parents' divorce ('take a sad

piano ballad that clocks in


for a

pop

single,

at over

it

better')

last

avun-

is

his

a tuneful

seven minutes, an unusual stretch

and longer than anything the

on an album. Moreover, the

his

Lennon about dealing with

Beatles

had included

four minutes were simply a sing-

along wordless chorus ('nah nah nah nah-nah-nah naaaah') repeated


over and over, with occasional scat-singing flourishes from McCartney.
'Revolution' was raw Lennon, back in form as a rock screamer

and supported by

aggressive, distorted guitars

Cosmic imagery and evocations of universal

moment. Here Lennon


to revolution
in

and

a rollicking piano.

love are sidelined for the

expresses his uneasiness with the exhortations

by militant student movements both

Europe. Lennon

felt

he had

common

in the

USA

agreed with their opposition to the Vietnam war, and he was


the

empowerment of what he considered

singing that 'we

when you

me

out.'

talk

all

want

to

and

cause with these groups.

to be his audience.

all

He

for

But

in

change the world', he added a caveat. 'But

about destruction, don't you

know

that

you can count

178

The Beatles

Although he acquiesced

That

version.

remake 'Revolution'

in the decision to

Lennon had no intention of abandoning

a rocker,

version,

renamed 'Revolution

as

the original slow

was included on the

album, and with the single and another recording from the album,
'Revolution

made

9', it

acoustic version

ambiguously: here,

make
out

when

presents his argument gently,

In the

more

you know

'don't

not stop the rush toward destruction.


'Revolution

It is

The

The

basis

Over

as a heroic

of a

that, in

texture.

It is

a gritty look

in the finished

an instrumental jam, cut from the end of 'Revolution

several days,

Lennon and Ono, with help

tape loops from

Day

do

society.

of the work, though virtually inaudible


is

orchestral,. choral
'A

his protests

denouement,

endeavour, although frag-

Harrison, raided EMI's archives and their

made

But

out.

minutes, paints a vivid picture of revolutionary chaos.

not a paean to revolution

production,

you can count me

that

triology's

ments of triumphal music peek through the


at the collapse

a little

unable to

an extraordinary piece of electronic music

9', is

just over eight

and
is

furious electric version, violence seems a cer-

and Lennon has decided: count him

tainty,

he

talk turns to destruction,

mind, and sings

up. his
in'.

a compellingly picturesque trilogy. In the

Lennon

sound

own

effects recordings

1'.

one session from

at

record collections, and

and from snippets of

and opera recordings. They used material from the

in the Life' sessions,

and recorded mellotron sounds, spoken

observations and off-the-cuff aphorisms, hysterical laughter, shouts

and even the chanting of football crowds.


original Beatles recording, as

was

was

All this

a tape loop

of a

laid over the

clinical voice inton-

ing the words 'number nine'. This repeating 'number nine', panned
across the stereo

image and fading

in

and out over the course of the

work, became the recording's most recognizable leitmotif, but there

were recurring musical motifs


a

work

that

was

as well.

alternately comical

What

and

all

this

added up

to

was

an incoherent mass

terrifying,

of sound from which a cinematic drama seemed to emerge.


Stranger

Opposite, though not the


Beatles' principal spokes-

man

for

peace

- that

was
\

Lennon's job

- Starr

here with a dove


portrait

in

still,

the song that follows this nightmare

(and which closes the

final side)

1968

by Richard Avedon.

on the album

Lennon's 'Good Night', a sweet

u \\^ sung by Starr and accompanied by a lush string backing that


'

poses

is

emerges from beneath the


position

is

final

shouts of Revolution 9

brilliant in its incongruity.

,
.

The

juxta-

Mystery Tours and Discord 1967-8

179

180

The Beatles

was not the

Actually, 'Revolution 9'

The group had assembled an

music.

Beatles' first piece

electronic

of electronic

work during

the early

part of the Sgt. Pepper sessions. Directed by Paul McCartney, the

and

untitled piece ran nearly fourteen minutes

performance in January 1967

Roundhouse Theatre

London. But

in

presided over a tape

Starr, too,

Apart from 'Revolution

new ground

broke
had.

And

at a 'Carnival

in fact,

would record

in the

much

9',

way

the

now

Starr,

there was

on The

little

that tracks

at the
disc.

Beatles that

on Revolver or

Pepper

Sgt.

two albums they

said of the

Be and Abbey Road. Lennon, McCartney,

development from 'Love

Beatles

a public

that used percussion sounds.

were composing

story of incessant forward

had

was never released on

same can be

in 1969, Let It

Harrison, and

work

it

actually

of Light' concert

Me

Do'

Yet

first-rate material.

to

if

the

Am The Walrus' was a

'I

movement and growth,

phase was

this final

one of consolidation.
The

Beatles, in fact,

and performance

is

a fascinating

styles that

musical imaginations were,

and

There

arrangers.

are

compendium of compositional

how wide-ranging the Beatles'


and how versatile they were as performers
shows

some marvellous parodies and

most of them by McCartney. His 'Back

of Chuck Berry's 1959 'Back in the U.S.A.', but

title

off on the
is

Beach Boys' early surf music

calypso. 'Martha

has

its

My Dear',

tributes here,

in the U.S.S.R.' plays off the

style.

is

actually a take-

'Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da'

a song about McCartney's sheepdog,

roots in the turn-of-the-century salon song. 'Rocky Racoon'

parodies the storytelling ballads of the American West, and 'Honey


Pie',

scored with jazzy winds,

is

fully in the style popularized

crooners of the 1920s. 'Helter Skelter' was meant to


Beatles could rock as hard as

McCartney has
in

said that he

any of the bands

just

show

by the

that the

coming up;

in fact,

was inspired by hearing an interview

which Pete Townshend of the

Who

says that his

group had

just

recorded the heaviest, most firebreathing piece of rock ever committed to record.

McCartney wanted

Lennon's parodies are

Gun' begins
eerie,

as

less

to

pre-empt them.

straightforward. 'Happiness

another in Lennon's introspective

organ-based opening section gives

at the refrain to a highly effective

vocal style.

song that

He

way

series,

is

Warm

but a dark,

to pure blues,

skewering of the 1950s'

and then

doo-wop

toys with the Beatles themselves in 'Glass Onion', a

refers to lyrics in several earlier Beatles recordings,

and

181

Mystery Tours and Discord 1967-8

includes the kind of red herrings (the claim that Paul was the walrus,
for

example) that would keep amateur Beatleologists speculating for

And just

years.

as

McCartney's 'Honey

'Good Night' could

1920s, Lennon's

captured the sound of the

Pie'

easily pass as

something from the

Bing Crosby or Frank Sinatra songbooks. Otherwise,


are

from current

He

styles.

itself

Me

and

borrowings

responds to the growing vogue for British

Got Something

blues-rock in the hard-driving 'Everybody's

Except

his

My Monkey',

and more stunningly

another thoroughly Lennonesque study in word imagery.

Of course,

not everything on The Beatles

is

referential.

Of the

Lennon contributions 'The Continuing Story of Bungalow


a

Hide

to

in 'Yer Blues',

Lennon

fantasy about a safari hunter,

and 'Cry Baby Cry' hints

Wonderland-style imagery of 'Lucy in the Sky with

at the Alice in

Diamonds,' though without the psychedelia. 'Sexy


altered

Bill' is

name and

sex of the central character,

Sadie', despite the

an acidic assessment

is

of the Maharishi, couched in a nicely arching melody, and an alluring


texture based

on an

sensitive side

of Lennon's songwriting

plaintive
a

'Julia',

is

memory

The more

here too. In the graceful,

he accompanies himself on acoustic

pained ode to the

refers to

electronically altered piano sound.

guitar,

and

sings

of his mother, tinged with imagery that

Ono.

McCartney's non-parodic explorations take a few unusual turns.


Besides such straightforwardly attractive, light-textured songs as
'Blackbird',
listeners'

'Why

'Mother Nature's Son', and

expectations

Don't

We Do

It

uncharacteristic that

if

'I

Will',

he toyed with

only briefly - with 'Wild

In the Road?;

many

Honey

his

Pie'

and

two free-wheeling bursts so

listeners at first

thought Lennon must

have been behind them.


Starr's

'Don't Pass

since 1963, has

on

its

Me

song he had been tinkering with

By', the

roots in country music.

Beatles For Sale or

Rubber

complete with twangy

Soul,

guitars.

it

Had

the Beatles recorded

it

undoubtedly would have come

But they saw the song differently now.

Instead, they brought in a few piano tracks


electronically processed to imitate a

on which the sound

Hammond

is

organ. Also in the

texture are sleigh bells, an eccentric touch for a country song. Yet the

country influence comes through, not


in a violinist to play a fiddle solo

least

because Martin brought

appropriate to a barn dance.

182

The Beatles

Of the

seven

new songs

that Harrison brought to the sessions, five

were recorded and four made

it

onto the album, each entirely

differ-

ent in character and none showing any trace of Harrison's Indian


dabblings. 'Piggies', for example,
day, dressed in a

The

strings.

is

social satire in the style

contrast between the civilized veneer of the music, and

which

the imagery of the lyrics, in

be cannibalistic, was what

heavy-handed. 'Savoy

made

nattily dressed pigs are

good-natured throwaway

Long'

is

in a

shown

to

the song seem sardonic rather than

Truffle', a tribute to a friend's

sweet tooth

(and a tongue-in-cheek warning about the consequences)


a

of the

faux-Baroque setting built around harpsichord and

hard rock

style.

an introspective love song so dark

And

is

basically

'Long, Long,

in texture as to

seem ready

to implode.

The
inviting

best of Harrison's

moments,

is

new

'While

Esher rehearsal tape and the

Abbey Road show

As members
Eric

of

Cream,

Clapton (seated) and

Jack Bruce

(left)

were

heroes of the nascent

British

blues rock movement.

Clapton had been friendly


with Harrison since

1965

when, as a member of the


Yardbirds, he performed on
the Beatles' Christmas
In

Show.

1968, he contributed an

exquisitely doleful lead

guitar line to Harrison's

'While

My

Guitar Gently

Weeps'; Harrison returned


the favour the following

year, co-writing

and playing

on Cream's 'Badge'.

songs, and one of the album's

My Guitar Gently Weeps'.


first

most

Both the

formal recording of the song

that Harrison originally conceived

it

at

as a gentle,

183

Mystery Tours and Discord 1967-8

minor key folk-song,

on

slightly

expanded during the

ideas

textural details.

Its

mournful but not lugubrious. But

and the finished version

sessions,

introduction, originally a simple walk through

the songs chord progression, ended

rhythm

a single note in a varied


a gloss

guitar

up featuring

drum

a piano repeating

for three bars before escaping into

of the songs melody. Set against

and

his

thrives

this

is

strummed

acoustic

pattern punctuated by a quickly closing high hat.

But the most striking aspect of the recording

is

the lead guitar part,

wah-wah pedal (which

played by Eric Clapton. Using a

lets a guitarist

pivot between extreme treble and extreme bass timbres), Clapton

added

a line that

wove around Harrisons

vocal, perfectly

conveying

the image of a weeping guitar.

member of the

Clapton, once a

Yardbirds and John Mayan's

Bluesbreakers, was by this time a star of the blues-rock

Cream, and was revered

in the

rock world

power

trio

as a virtuoso soloist.

For the Beatles and other pop bands of the 1960s, virtuosity in

its

showiest form was never a principal concern. Obviously, one had


to

come through with

where required, and the

solos

accompaniments; and McCartney's bass

lines

right kinds of

were certainly

virtuosic.

But the extended jamming that Clapton and Cream were known
for

as

were musicians

Jimi Hendrix, a black American guitarist

like

who had moved to London - took instrumental virtuosity in rock


a new level. The Beatles themselves never took up the challenge,
although they alluded to

it

The one Harrison song

in 1969, in a

that

as interesting. In

about the tensions within the band

He worked

hard on

it,

at the

end of Abbey Road.

was recorded but not included on the

album, 'Not Guilty', was nearly

subject.

jam

to

in

Harrison sings

it,

terms that barely disguised the

recording

more than

hundred takes

before he had an acceptable backing track, and then adding aggressive,

layered guitars

doomed

it: it

for Harrison to

band's

own

for

Lennon

skewer bourgeois

to criticize the

society,

but 'Not Guilty' aired the

of solo projects

a certain irony in calling this collection

Beatles, a title that asserts the band's unity.

Beatles as they were: four musicians

been forged

lyrics

Maharishi or

dirty laundry.

There was
The

and double-tracked percussion. Perhaps the

was one thing

in the

same

ing different terrain.

whose musical

crucible, but

And

in

any

But then,

case,

who were now


it

was not

this

was the

personalities

intent

until

had

on explor-

Lennon began

184

The

Be

publicly airing the group's internal battles, in 1970, that anyone outside the

group and EMI's engineers knew

To

all

far

from exploding that myth, seemed

appearances,

life

was

still

how

fractious things were.

fine in Beatle-land,

to support

and The

Beatles,

it.

_i

The Dick Lester


Day's Night

version

of our

and Help! made

lives in

it

Hard

look fun

and

games: a good romp? That was fair in the


films but in the real world there was never any
doubt. The Beatles were doomed. Your
space,

were
By 1969, Lennon was
interested

in

in

that

if

the notion

people climbed

bags so

into

that they could

be

heard but not seen, racism

and other prejudices could


be overcome.

so important. That's

doomed because we

own

why we

didn't have any.

George Harrison,

promoting

tongue-in-cheek philosophies

such as Bagism

it's

less

the Beatles'

projects than

man,

in I

Me Mine,

1980

186

The Beatles

The

Year 1969

Final

For the most part, Harrison, Lennon and Starr were content with the
state the Beatles

had reached. In the eyes of the world, the group

remained untouchable and untoppleable

same time, Apple gave them

the

as

pop music

royalty. Yet at

outlets for projects that did not

fall

comfortably under the Beatles banner.

Lennon quickly began making

use of this freedom, recording and

releasing his experimental collaborations with

Ono. Harrison had

brought out Wonderwall and would soon make Electronic Sound, a


collection of

Moog

tronic music

composer Bernie Krause (whose name,

tion,

synthesizer practice tapes, recorded with the elec-

was hidden under

other collaborators.
After his

cameo

Starr's interests, for

in Candy,

Sellers, in

McCartney, however, missed the

and he was convinced

in a controlled

the

moment, were

had liberated

spirit.

their imaginations,

which the

The

recording

discipline of rehears-

The

others

although in September 1968 Harrison mused in

interviews about taking over a concert hall


for a

- perhaps

but had also

ing and playing for an audience was the logical antidote.


their doubts,

role in

collective spirit of the group's

that giving a few concerts

fostered an unfortunate insularity, for

had

and

February 1969.

environment - would revive that

studio, he believed,

cover)

in film.

he would take on a more extensive

The Magic Christian, with Peter

early days,

to his consterna-

wash of silver paint on the album

and giving performances

few months. The next month, McCartney announced that once

The Beatles was finished, the group would work up some of the new
songs for a television taping, and would then perform them

Soon
the

there

was

talk

of a three-day booking

Roundhouse, with proceeds from the

in

sale

live.

mid-December

at

of 4,500 tickets going

to charity.

But true consensus within the Beatles was


the

a slippery concept

by

end of 1968. As the concert date approached with no sign

that

new

date

rehearsals

(but

might begin, the booking was scrapped, and

no venue) was announced

for mid-January. In fact, the plan

had

The

Final

187

Year 1969

Ever since

his

walkabout

A Hard Day's Night

in

Starr

had been considered the


most natural actor
the Beatles,

group's

final

turned to

the

months he

film for

outlet. After

among

and during

a solo

a bit-part

in

Candy, he co-starred with


Peter Sellers, right,

Magic

Christian,

in

The

1969.

changed yet again. Now,


the Beatles

preparing

would

new

material.

television special,

Roman

with an eye towards giving a concert,

The

rehearsals

New Year and

would be filmed

and then they would go

to

some

begin

for a

exotic location

amphitheatre in North Africa, the Sahara desert and even

a big ship in the

concert,

still

get together just after the

Mediterranean were mentioned - to play a single

which would

also

be filmed. They hired Michael Lindsay-

Hogg, the director who had made

their

promotional films for

'Paperback Writer', 'Rain', 'Hey Jude' and 'Revolution', to film this

endeavour from

start to finish.

To an

plan, except that the exotic concert

extent they carried out their

venue turned out

to be the roof

of

188

The Beatles

their

on

new Apple

their

in Savile

Row, London,

January afternoon.

a cold

With

and recording studio

offices

the tensions of the 'White

Album'

sessions

fresh in

still

minds, and with the added pressure of a camera crew following

them around,

Twickenham

the Beatles began their rehearsals at

Film Studios on 2 January. Because these were not proper recording

were no

sessions, there

real studio facilities.

portable tape recorder used to

and

We hear them,

interaction.

less oldies.

Drifters,

make

reference recordings, captured an

amount of detail about

extraordinary

But the cameras, and a

the Beatles' working

for example, limbering

Songs by Chuck Berry, Buddy Holly,

Bob Dylan,

Carl Perkins,

Stones, the Temptations

and even

Little Richard, the

Smokey Robinson,
a few of their

methods

up on count-

own

the Rolling

hits are

touched

upon. Mostly, these are unbuttoned, unpolished performances.

The
there
if

real

was

every

work

plenty,

new song

out

tried

Besides the songs included

be recorded

first

material, of which

four Beatles. In

all

at these sessions

completion, the group could easily have

yielded the

new

hand, of course, was the

at

with contributions from

filled

to

another double album.

on the Let It Be album, these

sessions

workouts of more than half the songs that would

later in the year for Abbey

Road

including

'Octopus's Garden', McCartney's 'Maxwell's Silver

Came

Darling', 'She

fact,

had gone through

In

Through

the

Bathroom Window' and

'Her Majesty', and Lennon's 'Sun King', 'Mean


'Polythene Pam', and Harrison's

Starr's

Hammer', 'Oh!

'Something' -

Mr Mustard'

and

as well as quite a

few

songs that found homes on their post-Beatles solo albums.

The

reference tapes

made by

the film crew capture the complete

development of several of the new songs, from the moment the composer played

McCartney

it

is

to the others

heard sitting

through to the finished production.

at the

piano or with his bass, singing out

the chords to his songs while the others follow along, or scat-singing
sections that lack lyrics,

even before the


electric

tions

and acoustic

and

and sometimes adding vocal harmonies

lyrics are finished.

versions,

Songs are

and with

tried

slow and

fast, in

different kinds of introduc-

solos.

Often, the

lyrics

come

together gradually while the

band

ing through the chords. 'Get Back', for example, began


Pakistanis', a

is

life as

churn-

'No

parody one of several recorded during these sessions

The

Final

189

Year 1969

of the 'Britain for the


groups.

The

British' stance

taken by various right wing

Pakistani notion was soon dropped, but the refrain

'get

back to where you once belonged' - became the peg around which

two scant unconnected


tapes capture
in

Tucson, Arizona. Lennon

McCartney
There

him,

tells

'Is

one point, the

Tucson

left his

home

in Arizona?' 'Yeah,'

of chat, which runs the gamut from hilarious

monologues by Lennon,

to serious discussions of the feasibility of

And

various concert proposals.


point,

had the longest

telling

him when and how

lific

asks,

at

the line 'Jo Jo

where they make High Chapparal'.

'it's

also plenty

is

And

were spun.

fantasies

McCartney coming up with

list

there are fights. Harrison, at this

of grievances.
to play.

And

He

objected to McCartney's

having become a more pro-

composer, he wanted his songs better represented on the Beatles'

albums. After a particularly tense session on 10 January, he walked


out, clearly with the intention of not returning.

without him; Lennon went

Clapton

to sit in. Five days later,

future, Harrison

made

it

The

as far as to suggest that

when

clear that

four

all

met

Twickenham and begin work on an album. The

programme about

the

if

Studios,

to the group's

where most of the material on the Let It Be album

in favour

of a theatrical

television idea

film.

makes the production of the album sound much more

All that

clear-cut than

it

was. In

should have been quite


the Beatles

was summarily

making of a new

was recorded in ten days of sessions. Eventually, the


was scrapped

they would leave

film

and the musicians and film crew moved

Beatles album,

new Apple

to negotiate their

he would no longer consider the

prospect of a live performance, but would return

redefined as a television

others continued

they invite Eric

fact, it

easy.

had announced

that their

was a

By

disaster,

although in concept,

the time the sessions

moved

new album would be

stage,

live, this

was

to Apple,

that they were getting back to their roots

recorded

live in

the studio, without

overdubbing or fancy technology. Since they would not,

form

it

was the next best thing.

And

the album's

after

title,

all,

per-

at this

to be Get Back.

To make

sure that the group's textural

without multitracking (they

later

did

demands could be met

some

slight

bing), Harrison brought in Billy Preston, an

when he was

the Beatles had

met

Little Richard's

band. Preston would soon become an Apple

at the Star

Club

touch-up overdub-

American organist who

in 1962,

part of
artist in

The Beatles

190

Will

it

be a

live

McCartney,
leads

film?

at the piano,

his fractious

colleagues

in

a rehearsal

during the filming of Let

Be

in

concert?

television special?

January 1969.

It

The

Final

Year 1969

191

192

The Beatles

own

his

sessions,

The formal

almost a

He

fifth Beatle.

played on

took a few prominent solos (on 'Get Back' for

and was given

instance),

and

now he was

but for

right,

most of the

a label credit for his performance.

were

sessions

oldies performances

unruly

as

as those at

Twickenham: jams

punctuated attempts to record new material,

and the Beatles decided that some of these off-the-cuff performances


should be included on the record. By 29 January, they had completed
several

new

and the next

songs,

sound

that really did

live,

day, in the

hope of getting versions

they clambered up to the windswept Apple

roof-top and gave a concert for the cameras while crowds gathered on
the street and

on adjacent

The

roof-tops.

police eventually stopped

the performance, but the Beatles did get forty-two minutes of taping

done, which yielded the

Back
three

in their

more

washed

songs,

their

last

twenty minutes of the Let

basement studio, on

31

and then, considering

hands of the

It

Be film.

January, they finished off

work done, they

their

project, leaving

George Martin and Glyn

Johns to sort out the audio recordings, and Michael Lindsay-Hogg to

make

his

way through

month's worth of film.

The outcome was

confusing mess. In early March, Lennon and McCartney asked Johns

He produced

compile the Get Back album.

to

the group's wish to


ter

a sequence that fulfilled

mix impromptu material and between-songs

Or

with finished recordings of the new songs.

the end, they refused to sign off

on

it,

and

his

chat-

so he thought. In

sequence was shelved.

Except for some minor tinkering, the tapes were untouched for the
rest

of the

year.

A few of his selections,

dropped from the finished album,

are

worth noting, since they represent the free-wheeling atmosphere


of the project.
'Rocker',

One was

which fades

breakdown and some


the Last

new

Dance

in

on

its final

thirty seconds

titled

and then,

after a

discussion, goes into the Drifter's classic 'Save

for Me',

songs, 'Don't Let

an instrumental jam, provisionally

which pivots

Me

briefly into

one of Lennon's

Down'. In the discussion that

follows,

can hear that they actually were thinking in terms of a concert


least,

Lennon goes through the order

one

set.

At

that the songs are to be played.

Also dropped was McCartney's 'Teddy Boy', and understandably:


clearly unfinished,
as

he

hums

his

it

meanders, with the others following McCartney

way through

one of several jams

in

it.

And

then there

which the band played

is

Lennon's 'Dig

a slowly evolving

It',

vamp

The

Final

193

Year 1969

while Lennon ad libbed

lyrics.

Although part of the version Johns

included on Get Back was shown in the film, only a few seconds of
the song
as

was,

it

showed

its

onto the

it

album -

final

new songs

skiffle classic,

909', a

Lennon

antiquity,

composed

untouched since the abortive attempt

to

work

with, plus

'Maggie Mae', which

He opened

also retained in the final sequence.

'One After

it

band and Preston could cook when the mood was

quick rendering of a Liverpool

was

a pity, because unpolished

word-play and name associations were amusing, and

that the

Otherwise, Johns had only eight

right.

made

to record

album with

the

in the 1950s
it

and

in 1963.

Lennon's other contributions were 'Dig a Pony', a page of streamof-consciousness lyrics set to a bluesy melody in three-quarter time,

and 'Don't Let

and
has

Me

insecurities

some

more

he had explored

sophisticated look at the concerns

in 'If

interesting musical touches.

vacillating
tion,

Down',

Fell'.

Its

Me Down'

'Don't Let

verses are built

around

E major and F sharp minor chord sequence -

one could argue, of the

lyric's

a representa-

principal concern, the mixture of

joyous optimism (E major) and doubt, fear and caution (F sharp

minor) that a new relationship brings.


Love', the metre

is

And

as in 'All

governed by the shape of the

You Need

lyric,

Thus, each stanza begins with a single

tional verse concerns.

is

not by convenfive-

beat bar, which leads immediately back to quarter time, a lopsided

arrangement by conventional pop songwriting standards.


Harrison came to these sessions with a cart-load of songs, but the
sessions yielded only

one finished one, 'For You

Blue', a straight

twelve-bar blues, embellished by a slide guitar solo by

Lennon and an

atmospherically tinkly piano accompaniment by McCartney.

McCartney dominated

the rest of the

ished 'Teddy Boy', there was 'Get Back',

formations ended up

McCartney used
its spirit.

which

as a pleasant

to describe

it

set.

mid-tempo

- 'music

was grafted

as a

after

all its

rocker.

'I've

Got

secondary melody, and 'Two of Us',


'I'll

Follow the Sun'.

piano-based ballads with

immediate standards,

lilting

'Let

It

Be'

The image
- captures

a Feeling', to

Lennon fragment, 'Everybody Had

hearkened back to

trans-

to rollercoast by'

There was the more hard-driving

a late 1968

Along with the unfin-

which

Hard

a folksy

And McCartney

Year',

tune that

sang two

melodies that helped make them

and 'The Long and Winding Road'.

194

The Beatles

As the
Back

first

glimpse of the widely publicized and long-awaited Get

project, 'Get Back'

a single with

and 'Don't Let

due fanfare on n

April. In

Me Down'

were released

as

advertisements, Apple

its

emphasized the live-in-the-studio aspect, declaring the recordings


be 'The Beatles

would be

as

Nature Intended'. The album,

available in the

Test pressings of the

it

to

was announced,

summer.

Glyn Johns sequence were made and widely

And in May a cover photo was taken. Angus McBean, the


photographer who had shot the cover of Please Please Me, was called

distributed.

back to recreate that photo, with the 1969 Beatles standing


the

same positions (leaning over

balcony

at

in exactly

EMI's headquarters

in

Complications thwarted

Manchester Square)
Lennon's original idea of

marrying Yoko

Ono

in Paris,

but eventually they found a

as in 1963. Yet, the Beatles

Get Back, and refused to approve

no

better,

and the summer

its

release.

release date

came and went.

registry they could call

home

in

Gibraltar.

They

were wed there on 20

March 1969, and


Amsterdam
for

flew to

for their 'Bed-In

Peace' honeymoon.

Lennon catalogued

their

travails in 'The Ballad of

John and Yoko'.

Long the only unmarried


Beatle, Paul

McCartney

is

flanked by Linda Eastman

and her daughter Heather


after their

wedding

Marylebone
in

were uneasy about

A revamped version

at the

Registry Office

London, 12 March 1969.

fared

The

Final

195

Year 1969

Ono

Lennon and

celebrity -

and

campaign

for

peace.

They held a second 'Bed-In'


in

Beatles, actually,

began a

series

Montreal from 26

to 2 June, during

May

find

its

way onto

the Abbey

Road album.

On

12

March, McCartney

whom

married Linda Eastman, an American photographer

met

in 1967. Eight days later,

Lennons had undertaken an

Lennon and Ono married


aggressive

campaign

for

he had

The

too.

world peace,

which

'Give Peace a Chance'

and decided

was

likely to

written

were on to other things. In February, they

of sporadic sessions, producing material that would

its

immediate media access


to

The

believed

that they should use their

and recorded.

wedding was

to use the natural publicity that a Beatle

draw

as a

platform for their

Gibraltar, they flew to

Amsterdam

new

mission. After marrying in

for their

honeymoon, which they

staged as a week-long 'Bed-In for Peace', inviting journalists to a series

of bedside interviews. They repeated

Lennon documented
in

it

the

this in

wedding and

'The Ballad of John and Yoko'. Perhaps

peace campaigning,

Montreal

in late

May.

the events surrounding

all

as

an offshoot of his

Lennon began thinking of songwriting

as a

kind

of journalism: he could write and produce recordings about whatever

was on
to

his

be his

mind, and get them immediately into the

first

try at that,

although

as

it

between the recording session and the


a

turned out,
release

stores.

six

of the

disc.

Chance', similarly, was recorded in his Montreal hotel

released five

weeks

later.

The

This was

weeks elapsed
'Give Peace

room and

process wasn't really perfected until early

196

The Beatles

1970,
it

when he wrote and

recorded 'Instant Karma!' in a day, and had

in the stores eleven days later.

Only McCartney was


'Ballad', so

on

available

when Lennon was

ready to record

14 April they divided the instruments between

(Lennon played

the guitar lines,

all

McCartney played

piano and maracas) and completed the recording themselves.

was

song's salient feature

motion

refrain. Surely

its

The

mindful of the com-

still

than Jesus' statement had caused in 1966, Lennon

his 'bigger

mischievously ended each verse with the


ain't easy,

them

drums,

bass,

you know how hard

it

can be.

lines, 'Christ

The way

you know

it

things are going,

going to crucify me.' Sure enough, some radio stations played

they're

an edited version.
For the

of the

flip side

tunity to shine,

single,

Harrison was again given an oppor-

and supplied 'Old Brown

workout during the January

Shoe', a song that

Two

sessions.

had

days after the 'Ballad'

McCartney

recording, the full group gathered to record this, with

providing a jangly piano part and an unusually rapid tandem bass

and guitar
'Ballad'

line.

and 'Old Brown Shoe' were recorded

release as a single.

early 1969 sessions

and

it

was not

What
is

the group thought

not

clear.

Heavy)'.

specifically for

was up

to at

its

other

Get Back was finished but in limbo,

until later in the year that they definitively decided to

pull together for another album. Yet


Billy Preston

it

on 22 February, the

reconvened to work on Lennon's

They worked on

it

more

in April,

'I

and

Beatles

Want You

and

(She's

finally finished

So

it

in August.

Hardly the most popular song on Abbey Road,

it is

nevertheless

one of the most innovative. Something of a Minimalist experiment,

owed something

to

'Hey Jude', but went

two musically disparate


triple metre,

and

ideas:

far

beyond

it. It is,

it

in a way,

an introductory section and refrain in

a verse in quarter time. This shift

from three to four

beat measures, as well as an accompanying shift from a kind of icy,


driving severity to a

and keeps the

The

warm

blues style, creates an interesting tension

listener slightly off balance.

introductory figure

is

a rising

and

falling guitar arpeggio, sup-

ported by an almost Tchaikovskyesque bass line and an expanding

organ chord.
stops,

It

does not quite lead into the song proper:

and from the

silence Lennon's voice emerges.

The

it

simply

verse

is

an

The

Final

197

Year 1969

expansion of the

sung

title line,

to a blues

melody with the lead


around

guitar following in tandem, McCartney's bass weaving

increasing virtuosity,

and

texture-filling figuration. Yet after a

few

repetitions,

gears again. Singing a dangling 'She's so

into the
in

it

with

Preston's organ providing Stax-flavoured,

music of the introduction, finishing the

two- and then three-part harmony with

The song moves back and

Lennon

shifts

he leads the group back

',

lyric ('She's so heavy')

a passing dissonant touch.

forth between these

two

ideas for just

over four and a half minutes, eventually leaving the final 'She's

unresolved and heading into an instrumental rendering of the

ductory music. This time the opening chord progression

so'

intro-

repeated

is

over and over, unchanging except in two details. McCartney's bass


line darts freely

rhythmic

around the chords, exploring

possibilities

each time.

And

harmonic and

different

progressive layers of synthesized

white noise create the sound of arctic winds. After three minutes,

Lennon had an engineer

The

implication

is

snip the tape,

making

for

an abrupt ending.

and white noise would

that the guitar arpeggios

otherwise have kept repeating forever.

Also in the works by the end of April were McCartney's 'Oh!


Darling', a love song in a raucous, updated 1950s' style,

new

children's

Lennon's 'You
since 1967,

and

Know My Name

was taken down

it

The

was released

in

for

(Look

some

final

1970

Up

the Number)', on the shelf

vocal overdubbing, but was

was

his

as the B-side

most conventional love song, and

not only his

first

still

touches were added seven months

of the 'Let

Sessions for Harrison's graceful 'Something' got under


It

Starr's

song about an aquatic Utopia, 'Octopus's Garden'.

considered unfinished.
later,

and

his

most

It

way

Be' single.
in

May.

successful, being

(and only) A-side of a Beatles single, but a song

widely covered by other musicians. These early sessions ended on


6 May, and

work would not resume

one more song was taped,

until July.

But before the

McCartney melody with

a gently plaintive

what under normal circumstances might have seemed


'You Never Give

The

Me Your

a peculiar

title,

Money'.

circumstances were anything but normal, though. Since

February, the group's finances had been precarious.


press that

house

hiatus,

Apple was almost bankrupt - that

for freeloaders,

and

that

it

Lennon

told the

had become an open

money was pouring out of it more

quickly than even the Beatles could coin

it.

McCartney

insisted that

198

The Beatle

New York law

Although the Beatles signed

things were not so dire, but proposed hiring the

countless autographs over

of Eastman and Eastman to sort things out. Eastman and Eastman

firm

the years, complete sets

with special characteristics


- for

instance, the

individual caricatures here


-

are especially prized

was a prestigious firm that had contacts


stretching back decades.
view,

The

catch,

was that Lee Eastman and

his

in

music and publishing

from the other

Beatles' point

of

son John were about to become

McCartney's father-in-law and brother-in-law.

by collectors.

Nevertheless, in early February,

appointing Eastman and Eastman

Lennon, Harrison and eventually

all

four signed an agreement

as general
Starr,

counsel for Apple. But

had doubts about the

arrangement. Lennon had a competing proposal. Allen Klein, a

York music manager

who had

Rolling Stones, had flown to

New

negotiated a fortune in royalties for the

London

to offer his services as

soon

as

Lennon's assessment of Apple's finances hit the papers. Brusque and

down

to earth, exactly the opposite

Lennon, who signed him on


single meeting. Harrison

and

as his

Starr

of the Eastmans, Klein impressed


personal representative after a

backed Klein

too.

McCartney

did not. So the others, with typical naivety, decided that both John

Eastman and Allen Klein could look


Their

first

joint

after the group's interests.

endeavour should have been to buy

Enterprises, Epstein's

management

firm,

which took

NEMS

a twenty-five

per cent commission on the Beatles' record royalties, and was

now

The

Final

199

Year 1969

for sale. Epstein's family said

it

would

Beatles than to the highest bidder, the

Yet just as

NEMS was within

rather

sell

the

company

to the

Triumph Investment Group.

their grasp, managerial infighting at

Apple scared the Epsteins into the arms of Triumph.


Eventually Klein

managed

to

buy the

Beatles out of the

NEMS

contract.

But another disappointment loomed. Dick James, the

publisher

who

signed

Lennon and McCartney

principal shareholder of

in 1963,

and was the

Northern Songs, the company he created

to

handle their catalogue, was alarmed by Lennon's avant gardism and

had staunchly opposed

their

involvement with Klein.

He had

also

had enough of the group's increasingly high-handed treatment of


him. So when Lennon and McCartney were on their honeymoons, in

March, he sold

his shares in the

company

Klein sought to seize control of the

to

Lew

company

Complicated negotiations were undertaken with


controlled the decisive shares,
Beatles.

But

at the last

ATV

Music.

for the Beatles.


a

consortium that

and which was inclined toward the

minute, Lennon publicly proclaimed his

disinclination to deal with businessmen,

had won control of the company.

It

and by

late

May, Grade

was around the same time that

Klein was formally installed as manager.


Apple's staff forthwith.

Grade's

He

began dismantling

200

The Beatles

All these battles, to say nothing of the

widening

creative gulf

between the musicians, made the dissolution of the Beatles


Starr

making

it

he saw his destiny elsewhere. McCartney,

clear that

had been the de facto director of the band since

And

rebuffed in his choice of manager.

ways

in

When

May.

was, at

to be called Everest.

first,

was

it

them knew would be

who

had been

Sgt. Pepper,

went

so they

they reconvened in July,

they and everyone around


It

inevitable.

and Harrison had already quit and come back. Lennon was

their separate

to record

their final

what

album.

The name came from

the brand

of cigarettes that one of the engineers smoked, but the Beatles soon
seized

on the idea

that calling their final

a passing fad in 1963

in itself a

and 1964, and who thought they would be

Now they were walking away from

destroyed by controversy in 1966.


the Beatle

album Everest was

They had confounded everyone who had thought them

statement.

myth while they were

competitors both creatively and

They even
photo. But

at their peak,

agreed to be flown to

when

the time

came

to

none of them could be bothered.

towering over

all

their

popular phenomenon.

as a

Mount

Everest to shoot a cover

make arrangements

In the end,

for the trip,

one of them suggested

going out into the road to shoot the cover. McCartney sketched out
a cover design, the photographer Iain Macmillan was commissioned
to shoot the Beatles traversing the

Abbey Road

zebra crossing, and

suddenly the album became Abbey Road. Actually, the album was not
even recorded entirely

Back sessions

at

at

EMI's Abbey Road studios. After the Get

Apple, the Beatles were eager to assert their inde-

pendence from EMI, so from February

London

studios. Mostly, they did so

had found the tense January


July sessions only after

would work

as

as a producer,

May

they visited other

He

sessions unbearable.

McCartney promised him

who

returned for the

that the Beatles

they had in years past, and that they would treat

not

him

as a lackey.

Abbey Road was by no means


Sgt.

to

without George Martin,

a return to the experimentation of

Pepper and Revolver, but every track was laboured over in great

detail.

EMI

doubled the
this relative

eight tracks,

had upgraded
Beatles'

to eight-track facilities,

overdubbing and balancing

opulence was

insufficient,

mixed them down

to

and

which again

flexibility.

Yet even

in several cases they filled

two and then

filled

the tape again.

Orchestras sweeten several songs and sound effects were used

freely,

The

Final

201

Year 1969

among them bubble-blowing on

Starr's

blacksmith's anvil in 'Maxwell's Silver


first

time on a Beatle record was the

electronic instrument,

Moog

newly famous

the American composer Walter

'Octopus's Garden and a

Hammer'. And heard

for the

synthesizer, the latest

instrument on which

as the

(now Wendy) Carlos had produced

Switched-On Bach.

The

sessions began, fittingly, with

adding vocals to 'You Never Give

McCartney alone

in the studio,

Me Your Money'. He also

recorded

the twenty-three-second 'Her Majesty', really just a throw-away,

although

had been germinating

it

Early July also saw

That Weight',

Thomas

of a

a setting

poem by

the sixteenth-century playwright

Dekker. There was an immediate philosophical disagreement

on how

to proceed.

wanted

to link several songs together in a

in

January sessions.

at least since the

work on McCartney's 'Golden Slumbers/Carry

McCartney, with encouragement from Martin,

huge

with stretches

suite,

which individual songs were inseparable from those around them.

There was reason

to think in bigger terms.

Back' hit the charts, the


Beatles with

Tommy,

unified, dramatic

The main

Around

the time 'Get

had wrested the spotlight from the

a rock opera in the truest sense

whole

Lennon thought

Who

the

in

of the term, a

which each song advances the

McCartney Martin

suite idea

motivation, he argued, was to disguise the fact that so

of the songs they were considering for inclusion - his

many
'Mean

Mr

Came

in

further.

Through

the

Bathroom Window',
at

for

example - were

the January sessions and never developed

They were obviously not promising enough

to merit full-

length development, and by Lennon's lights, weaving


as a suite

own

Mustard' and 'Polythene Pam', and McCartney's 'She

merely fragments tried

them together

was a pretentious cheat.

This was, in truth, a peculiar objection for Lennon,

minded joining
'Happiness
mise.

narrative.

was nonsense.

The

is

first

disparate fragments to produce 'A

Warm

who had

not

in the Life' or

Gun'. In any case, Martin mediated a compro-

side of the

album, and the

have full-length, independent songs,

album would end with the


this structural

Day

suite

as

start

of side two, would

Lennon wanted. But

the

McCartney proposed. Other than

disagreement, the sessions went smoothly through July

and August. The

final

touches were put on the album on 25 August,

202

The Beatles

John Lennon/bag one

203

Year 1969

The

Final

Left,

the cover of Lennon's

Bag One

collection of erotic

and

it

out,

was

was released thirty-one days

good

later.

The compromise,

it

turned

thing.

lithographs, a project

which,

like

the

Two

love for

Ono

in

Lennon's contributions to the effort were few, but

Virgins

album, celebrated Lennon's

way

that

Besides

'I

Want You

ningly harmonized melody

courted controversy.
istic

imagery and

first rate.

So Heavy)', there was 'Because',

(She's

woven around

light puns.

a stun-

with natural-

a lyric filled

Lennon always maintained

the the chord

sequence was derived from Beethoven's 'Moonlight' Sonata, which he


heard

Ono

play and asked her to play backwards. If the story

true,

is

other harmonic alterations took place along the way, but certainly the

accompaniment owes something

to the

Lennon's other full-length offering,


as a gift to

Timothy

Leary, the

around

his

Together', began

LSD

guru. Visiting

life

Lennon

at the

end of May, Leary

said that he

and asked Lennon

to write a

was

song

campaign slogan, 'Come Together'. Lennon ended up

keeping the song himself, bringing


July.

'Come

American

political office

during the Montreal Bed-In


planning to run for

Beethoven work.

'Come

to the Beatles' session in late

it

Together' makes a superb opening track:

album with Lennon

word

hissing the

guitar figure that obscures

The song landed him

what he

in legal

is

'shoot',

typical

interspersed nonsense phrases, outlandish wordplay

sentiment. But as was Lennon's

another song

as a template.

actually saying

hot water.

it

launches the

followed by a rising
'shoot me'.

Lennon

lyric,

it

and Utopian

wont while composing, he used

This time

it

was Chuck

Catch Me', and unfortunately, he retained

Berry's 'You Can't

with

a line of Berry's lyric

only slight alterations. Berry's publisher sued, and the case dragged on
to the mid-1970s,

when Lennon

a few

Roll, his

1975 oldies collection.

Also

agreed to record 'You Can't Catch

more songs from the

Me' and

among

publisher's catalogue

lyric

about

Silver

began with a second Harrison offering, 'Here


a gracefully lilting

of spring

after a

variations of a
I

bass,

melody supports

The second

Comes

a lyric

major chord fingering,

and

a trick

about the

he

side

the Sun', in

dismal winter. Harrison's introduction

Needed Someone'. The

drums,

Hammer', an

cranium-smashing, psychopathic medical

student, set to an incongruously singsongy melody.

which

'n

the free-standing songs were Starr's 'Octopus's Garden'

and McCartney's 'Oh! Darling' and 'Maxwell's


oddity with a

on Rock

last

is

arrival

based on

used on

'If

acoustic guitar holds centre stage, with

delicate synthesizer tracery added,

all

making

for

204

The Beatles

The melody

a beautifully transparent sound.

ciously applied three-part vocal harmonies.

accented with judi-

is

The two Harrison com-

My Guitar

positions included here, together with the earlier 'While

Gently Weeps', show that Harrison had

found

at last

his voice,

and

could write songs easily on a par with those Lennon and McCartney

were producing. For that matter, 'Here


substantial than 'Maxwell's Silver

There
suite

something

is

Comes

the Sun'

far

is

more

Hammer'.

to Lennon's

complaint that the album's closing

an easy way of sweeping together the shards of unfinished

is

songs. Yet the construction

King' and 'Mean

Through

the

was hardly slapdash. In some

Mr Mustard,'

cases ('Sun

Came

'Polythene Pam', and 'She

in

Bathroom Window', and 'Golden Slumbers' and 'Carry

That Weight) fragments were fashioned into medleys before they


were recorded. Others were
puzzle. Experiments

fitted together like pieces

been inserted between 'Mean

was

without

it.

Mr

when McCartney

out

sliced

of a jigsaw

were tried and abandoned: 'Her Majesty' had

And where

Mustard' and 'Polythene Pam', but

realized that the suite flowed better

smoothed

the joins were rough, orchestrations

out the connections.


Granted, the fragments yoked together bear no relation to each
other.

But what

begins with

a colourful cast of characters they present.

McCartney rooted

The

set

firmly in the real world, complaining

about business in 'You Never Give

Me Your Money'.

drifts into the free-floating fantasy

world of Lennon's 'Sun King', a

land of three- and four-part


sheen, where everybody

A drum

harmony with only

said to be laughing

Starr introduces

'Mean

polythene bag, and jackboots and a

into 'She

Came

McCartney
brings the

in

after a

first

Through

the

kilt).

it

quickly

a mildly dissonant

and happy.

Mr

Mustard', a harmless

and 'Polythene Pam', with her curious

eccentric,
(a

from

fill

is

But

sartorial specialities

A guitar solo

leads

Bathroom Window', written by

souvenir-hunting fan broke into his house. This

part of the suite to a close.

And

just as that section

began with McCartney's gentle piano chording, so does the continuation,

'Golden Slumbers' and

which

reprises the

time with more abstract

The
tory.

final section,

As such,

it

its

extension, 'Carry

melody of 'You Never Give

That Weight',

Me Your

Money',

this

lyrics.

'The End',

is

the Beatles' self-conscious valedic-

includes something unusual for the Beatles, a jam in

The

Final

Year 1969

which each

alternate brier lead guitar solos in a dialogue that hi^h-

McCartney's playing

lights their individual styles:

Harrisons

osic,

moment. McCartney, Harrison

takes the spotlight for a

and Lennon

and more

simpler, slinkier

is

chunky, chordal growl. Even Starr takes a

and

would seem

to

embody

virtu-

and Lennon's

And

as the

is

song comes

McCartney, Lennon and Harrison harmonize on

to a close,
line that

solo.

fleet

is

bluesy,

a single

the experience the Beatles had

come

through since 1962, and a sentiment they had promoted since 1965:

And in

the

end

The love you take


Is

equal

to the lore

you

make

was the perfect ending

It

would have been. But


of this

is

clear

for the Beatles recording career. Or,

real life

not so

engineer affixed

it

to the

after

lopping

end of the

reel.

is

Together', so

if

side

'Here

'I

Want You

is
is

the Sun',

which

it is is

way

it

was

and so ends
the

in

same key

resolved. Similarly, the

(She's

starts

note,

played again immediately after

sudden

So Heavy)' leaves the song,

one of the album, unresolved. But

Comes

it

there.

cannot have inten-

its final

turns out,

it

album

the

'Her Majesty' ends, the progression


tape cut at the end of

and

it

interesting harmonically. Because of the

the middle of a chord sequence. As

Its

out of the medley, an

it

also creates a circular effect that the Beatles

'Come

long

When McCartney heard

cut from the medley, 'Her Majesty' lacks

as

after a

he decided to leave

a playback of the finished suite,

ded, but which

it

Beatles' recognition

'Her Majesty' suddenly pops out of the speakers.

appearance was an accident:

It

The

tidy.

from the way the album actually ends:

silence, the brief

on

is

side

two begins with

with exactly the chord needed to

finish the sequence.

When
for

the Beatles finished Abbey

what he

Road Lennon

from the

called a divorce

The

Beatles.

reasserted his need


others,

persuaded him not to discuss these feelings publicly:

were negotiating

them with

EMI

to

a revision

greater royalties

know

of their contract,

on

Lennons interviews from


was more interested

in his

It

would not do

no longer be

the time

own

left

Klein

which would provide

albums.

earlier

that the Beatles mi;ht

and Klein,

EMI and

for

a ^oine, concern.

the impression that he

projects than Beatles endeavours, but

206

The Beatles

The Beatles
1969,

in

in

one

the spring of
of their last

publicity photos as a

band.

The

Final

207

Year 1969

was always open. In the mean-

that the door to future collaborations

when McCartney

time, despite his objection to performing live

suggested
to

it,

perform

He

he accepted an invitation, on the spur of the moment,

at a

brought the

rock and
Plastic

Clapton on

guitar,

drums. The

set

show

roll oldies

Ono

Klaus

Toronto on

in

Band, which in

Voorman on

bass

this case

13

September.

included Eric

and Alan White on

included oldies ('Blue Suede Shoes', 'Money', and

'Dizzy Miss Lizzy'), Lennon's 1968 'Yer Blues', a new, as yet unreleased
song, 'Cold Turkey', and the anthemic 'Give Peace a Chance', along

with two of Ono's extended avant-garde feedback-and-wailing pieces.


All this

was recorded, and released before the

year's

end

as Live

Peace

in Toronto.

Meanwhile,

it

was time

Hogg had produced

When

Be.

to settle the fate of Get Back. Lindsay-

a cut of the film,

the Beatles saw

it,

which was now

called Let It

they realized that they had never com-

on - Harrison's

pleted two of the songs they are seen working

'I

Me

Mine' and Lennon's 'Across the Universe' - and that recordings would
be needed for the soundtrack album. For the Lennon song, the 1968
recording was taken off the

Lennon gathered
last

at

shelf.

Abbey Road

session devoted to recording

And on

to record

new

January 1970,
'I

loose, as they

wanted

it

Me Mine'. This was


new

but

it

was

the

also sloppy.

elements, but

The album was

failed to please the Beatles.

it;

but

Beatles material.

Johns produced another sequence using these


like his earlier effort,

all

Lennon and Harrison

had recently renewed an old friendship with Phil Spector, the

American producer known


'wall

of sound' production

the tapes

and given

reflect the

for his grandiose yet tightly controlled


style.

In late March, Spector was

a tall order: the finished Let It

contents of the film, and

it

had

that whatever Spector did

wisely

free to use

would be an improvement.

to call Spector's Let It


left

was

Lennon and Harrison reckoned

For the most part, they were wrong, although

ment

to

to at least allude to the

original as nature intended' idea, although Spector

standard post-production techniques.

handed

Be album had

Be a

disaster

from

it is

an overstate-

start to finish.

Spector

'Get Back', 'For You Blue', 'Two of Us' and 'One After

909' alone, simply creating clean, crisp mixes from the eight-track
sessions tapes. Like

Glyn Johns, he included dialogue, count-ins

and the off-the-cuff version of 'Maggie Mae'.

And by

doing some

208

The Beatles

judicious editing and restructuring, he transformed the

version of

'I

Me

Mine', which lasted only a minute and a

January
half, into a

full-length song.

On

the other hand, 'Dig

hinted at the free-wheeling

was reduced

It'

to a snippet that scarcely

He added

it.

echo to

him from

And

Far

guitar

single

and

he restructured the song, editing in a repetition

verses.

more egregious was

his

treatment of 'The Long and Winding

Road' and 'Across the Universe'. Calling

Hewson

With two

one heard on the

solos to choose from, he suppressed the

used the other.

entirely

simple high hat taps, making

Starr's

for a cascading effect foreign to the feel of the song.

of one of the

several songs

had already been

fact that 'Let It Be'

released as a single, for example, did not stop

recasting

And

of the original.

spirit

were severely overproduced. The

to create

new arrangements,

in the orchestrator

Richard

Spector layered an orchestra

and choir on both songs, transforming them into pompous goo.

up

'Across the Universe', sped

vocal effect that


speed,

Lennon

liked,

was now brought down to normal

and sounded slow and draggy.

'I

orchestral treatment too, but survived

Lennon thought

when he heard

it,

Spector's

and was

And

in 1968 to create the other-worldly

Me

it

work was

Mine' was given the

better than the others.

McCartney was outraged

fine.

particularly incensed

by what had become

of 'The Long and Winding Road'. Whether he nevertheless approved


it

for release

an open question: McCartney claimed that he did not

is

hear the album until

its release,

but Spector claimed that McCartney

sent his approval by telegram.

when

In any case,

the

album was

disappointingly anticlimactic.

known, thanks
ers

agreed with

McCartney

appallingly un-Beatles-like.
released, the

said as

much

had played

The

to bootlegs of the

released

material

on

on

May

it

1970,

was

it

was already well

Glyn Johns mixes, and most

listen-

that Spector's transformations were

And

in fact,

breakup had been made

by the time the album was

official.

On

10 April,

McCartney

while promoting his debut solo album, McCartney.

all

the instruments

on

this record,

and

as

He

an added display

of independence, he included a self-interview with press copies.

Asking himself if there were plans for new Beatles recordings,


or whether he missed the other Beatles and Martin while recording

McCartney, his blunt answer was no.

He

gave the same response to a

The

Final

209

Year 1969

question about whether the

Lennon McCartney

partnership might

be revived. To a question about whether the album represented a


with the Beatles or merely a

rest,

he

said, 'time will

tell'.

And

split

he

characterized his reasons for breaking with the Beatles as 'personal

most of all

differences, business differences, musical differences, but

because
ent?

have a better time with

Temporary or perman-

don't know.'

The hopeful clung


tell',

my family.

for a while to that

'I

don't

know' and 'time

will

abbetted by interviews in which the others suggested that the

breach might not be irreparable. Yet, listening to Let It Be alongside

McCartney and Live Peace


Harrison's All Things
real

answer was

Only

in Toronto

or by the end of the year,

Must Pass and Lennon's Plastic Ono Band the

clear.

eight years earlier, the Beatles

had ventured forth from

Liverpool and quickly conquered the music world with an original

amalgam of rock, rhythm and


tional music, a

imagination.

blues, country, English folk

They logged

tens of thousands of miles

recorded thirteen albums and twenty-two singles for

than 200 songs, mostly their


barriers
in

own

between high and low

compositions.

art,

and between

felt

on

tour,

tradi-

They had broken

And

pop

was

over.

the

genres,

now, because

that their individual musical destinies lay in different

directions, the Beatles era

and

EMI - more

different

ways that no rock band before them had done.

they

and

touch of avant gardism and a healthy measure of

210

The

Epilogue

The rock world

has produced

advanced composers, and

more

it

many

genuinely inventive, technically

has produced superstars

who

records than the Beatles did at their height. Yet

have sold

no group or

solo

performer has attained the stature - the almost universal acceptance


across musical boundaries,

which others

By
all

are

and the sense of being the standard against

measured - that the Beatles achieved.

the time of the breakup, Lennon, Harrison and

McCartney had

produced musical works outside the group. McCartney had com-

posed the soundtrack music for The Family Way, and Harrison pro-

duced the Wo nderwall soundtrack and Electronic Sound. In October

and by

1969, Starr began recording a collection of cabaret standards,

the end of the year,

McCartney was working on

his first collection

of

post-Beatles rock songs.

John Lennon, of course, was by then an experienced hand


projects

or

really,

collaborations with

Ono. Their

first

at solo

joint project

actually predated their romantic involvement. Fascinated with Ono's

conceptual art projects after seeing her Unfinished Paintings and

Drawings exhibition
called Yoko Plus

November

in

Me in

Unfinished Music No.

1966, he sponsored a

October 1967. Haifa year

Two

1:

Virgins,

and

later

released

it

London show

they recorded

around the time

of the 'White Album'.

now demanding

In spring 1968,

began

their

campaign

for

recognition as soul mates, they

world peace, staging events of various kinds.

Acorns for Peace was unveiled (or planted)

at

Coventry Cathedral

in

June, and in July, 365 message-bearing balloons were released over

London

as the inaugural

At the end of the

year,

event in Lennon's You Are Here exhibition.

they documented Ono's hospital

stay,

during

her miscarriage, for one side of Unfinished Music No. 2: Life With the
Lions.

The

other side was a recording of Lennon's

an accompanist to
Scenes from their

Ono
first

at a

first

concert in Cambridge in

performance

March

as

1969.

Bed-In were included on The Wedding Album.

21

Epilogue

Yet another avant-garde project

a recording of a studio full

people laughing wildly for half an hour


Besides

all this,

- was

left

of

unissued.

Lennon and Ono produced numerous avant-garde

and 1970. Some were whimsical. For Bottoms and Up

films in 1969

Your Legs Forever, they had visitors drop their trousers to be filmed.
Fly,

with a suitable soundtrack by Ono, followed the painstakingly

filmed (with help of sugar water) travels of a

fly

around a woman's

body, and Smile was a study of Lennon smiling. Others were


intense. In Rape,

a.

camera followed

woman

through the

more

streets

and

into her apartment (her sister collaborated by providing the key)

chronicling her changing response, from curiosity and


first

Yet for

all

the

humour

at

intrusive.

which Lennon was most

this activity, the field in

home remained
a

camera grew more

to extreme irritation as the

pop song, and he did not neglect

at

'Give Peace

it.

Chance' emerged from the Montreal Bed-In of May and June 1969.

'Cold Turkey' was an acknowledgement of something the Beatles had

been keeping quiet: the


a heroin habit

fact that

Lennon and Ono had developed

by mid-1969. 'Cold Turkey' was about the painful

process of kicking that habit, and to


record's final

make

that pain tangible, in the

moments, Lennon borrowed Ono's screaming

released these

two songs

as singles, as well as 'Instant

tech-

Lennon had

nique. Even before the Beatles had officially broken up,

Karma' and the

Live Peace in Toronto album.

months of pursuing Ono's ex-husband, Tony Cox,

In 1970, after
in the

went

hope of gaining custody of her daughter, Kyoko, the Lennons

to Los Angeles to vent their frustrations at primal scream ther-

apy sessions with Dr Arthur Janov, an experience that yielded the


intensely personal (and often blisteringly angry) songs compiled

the Plastic
his denial

Plastic
its

Ono Band album. Among them was


of a

list

of the world's

Ono Band was

successor in 1971, hid

and production

idols,

on

'God', which includes

from Buddha

to the Beatles.

spare, almost Minimalist in texture. Imagine,


its

harshness under a sugar coating of strings

effects. Its title

song, a Utopian vision of a world

without national boundaries or greed, joined 'Give Peace a Chance'


as

an

idealist

My Love',
'I

Don't

is

anthem. That song, along with 'Jealous Guy' and 'Oh


sweetly

Want

across the

to

lyrical.

Be a

bow of the

But there

Soldier'

is

unvarnished anger here too.

and 'Gimme Some Truth'

establishment, and

'How Do You

are shots

Sleep?'

is

an

212

The Beatles

undisguised attack on McCartney (in response, Lennon said, to a

somewhat

subtler attack

on McCartney's

Lennon and Ono moved


ished,

and forged

Ram album).

New York soon

to

links to the radical anti-war

after

Imagine was

fin-

underground. This

proved imprudent: once the Nixon administration got the idea that

Lennon would be
it

moved

to have

a five-year battle to remain in the

Lennon

his 'radical' phase,

journalist persona,

Memory

deported, claiming his 1968 drug conviction as

Thus began

justification.

During

the drawing card at an anti-Nixon demonstration,

him

as his

and with

New York bar band called

Elephant's

backing group, he recorded Some Time in

City, a collection

USA.

slipped into his songwriter-as-

New

York

of his positions on everything from Northern

Ireland to the uprising at Attica State Prison. Musically, these folksy

outpourings were the

least inspired

songs he had yet released, and

even his most ardent fans were beginning to wonder


well

had run

dry.

was an attempt
inspiration

helped.

this.

if

the creative

Mind Games,

to return to the spirit of Imagine.

But here

in 1973,

too, his

was inconsistent. The pressures on him could not have

While he fended

his relationship

and

Lennon no doubt sensed

for a year

and

American government's harassment,

off the

Ono

with

foundered.

The two

a half Lennon split his time

separated in 1973,

between

New York

and Los Angeles.

Lennon had two albums


period.

The

first

was Rock

in the

V Roll,

'Come

record as the cost of settling the

The

and Bridges,

other was Walls

self-analytical

He and Ono
virtually

works concurrently during

a.

this

the collection of oldies he agreed to

Together' plagiarism

suit.

collection of autobiographical

songs that was a decided improvement on

and

Mind Games.

were reconciled in January 1975, whereupon Lennon

dropped out of sight

for five years, preferring to raise their

son Sean outside the public eye. But Lennon continued to compose,

and

in 1980, as his fortieth birthday approached,

he and

Ono

returned to the music world with Double Fantasy, a collection of songs

about the joys and

stresses

of marital

Lennon's return to public

world even
Beatles

it Double

music on

tive interviews,

it.

life

life,

arranged as a dialogue.

would have galvanized the rock

Fantasy had not had

some of his

Suddenly he was available

and was already

Milk and Honey. But

at nearly

at

work on

n pm on

best post-

for lengthy retrospec-

a follow-up, to be called

December,

as

he and

Ono

213

Epilogue

walked from

their limousine to the

doorway of the Dakota

Apartments, Lennon was shot dead by

demented

fan for

whom

Mark David Chapman,

he had autographed a copy of Double

Fantasy earlier in the day.

Lennon's death, and the manner of it, shocked the world. But
did not silence him, entirely. In 1984,
progress,

Milk and Honey, the

Ono

it

released their work-in-

of several posthumous projects that

first

include Menlove Avenue, a collection of unreleased performances, and

New York City, a recording of a 1972 concert with Elephant's


Memory. Ono also provided several hundred hours of Lennon's
Live in

working tapes

The Lost Lennon

for use in a radio series,

and

Tapes,

allowed her private film archive to be used in the making of Imagine:

John Lennon,

documentary

a 1988

Paul McCartney's

about

its

seemed

maker.

Its

first

cover photo, with

comment on

a wistful

all

own

as a

already,

with songs

this facility

made

it

less certain.

He

blessing.

Too

air

this

to separate the

problem.

and the

First rate

he was extraord-

on demand. But

often, his thin-air creations

remained vaporous, and without Lennon's trusted

was unable

By

he was pre-

had, of course,

like 'Yesterday'. In fact,

produce songs out of thin

was a mixed

tranquillity.

clear that

one-man band. Whether he could

stand alone as a songwriter seemed

inarily facile, able to

bowl of cherries,

spilled

the Beatles' breakup, but then, so did

the instruments himself, he

pared to stand on his

done so

its

which depicted domestic

the other jacket photos,

playing

film.

post-Beatles album, McCartney, said a lot

wheat from the

chaff.

critical voice,

he

McCartney points up

songs like 'Maybe I'm Amazed', 'Every Night'

lilting 'Junk' sit

beside throwaways like 'The Lovely Linda'

and 'That Would Be Something'.

The

consistency problem was

albums,

Ram and Wild Life,

more acute

both recorded

in his

second and third

in 1971, the latter

with

McCartney's new band, Wings. McCartney hoped that Wings would


be a stable group that could evolve from project to project. But except

who was now playing keyboards, and Denny


who had been in an early line-up of the Moody

for his wife Linda,

Laine, a guitarist

Blues, Wings' personnel

Red Rose Speedway,

changed frequently

in 1973,

was a

distinct

improvement,

beautifully textured songs (but also featuring the treacly

And

the

same year saw further

full

'My

of

Love').

progress: the composition of 'Live

and

214

The Beatles

Let Die', a high-energy theme song for a James

Band on

the Run, the

of McCartney's solo

album

career.

that

Bond

would become

Band on

the

Run was

film,

and

a high-water

mark

triumph snatched

from the jaws of disaster. Half of Wings resigned the day Paul and
Linda McCartney and Denny Laine

album was McCartney's most


the Beatles.

Its

after his arrival. Yet the

and most

consistent,

successor, Venus

Lagos, Nigeria, to begin

left for

McCartney was mugged soon

recording.

and Mars,

in 1975,

spirited, since

was cut from

similar cloth.

With

release,

its

undertook

world

of Sound'in 1976.

McCartney and
tour,

The

newly reconstituted Wings

stopping only to record Wings at the Speed

tour produced a triple live album, Wings Over

America, and a film, Rockshow, which included McCartney's remakes

of a handful of Beatles songs, along with stage versions of his


solo material.

The

McCartney

tour gave

of Sound and
the bright

its

a creative boost; yet

Wings at the Speed

1978 follow-up, London Town, were retreats from

sound of Band on

McCartney was lightening

the

Run and Venus and Mars.

Now

the textures, looking at music that prized

melody, character and introspection over energy and drive. There

were

also responses to the criticism

Love Songs', he confronts those

'My

Love', but he

As

is

in his Beatles days,

McCartney

One

regularly released singles that

of these, the singsongy 'Mull of

paean to the environs of his Scottish farm proved to

be one of the best-selling records of


to

Hold Your Hand', though

for

all

time, eclipsing even

a collection that explores a great


It

in

many

deserved better than the

McCartney undertook
Japan

1980

all

to the

it

as

had

his

to 1940s'

received.

and was about

He

to tour

spent eight days in

Wings

fell

performing

jail,

apart then.

Beatles broke up: he released

one-man-band album, McCartney II His instrumental

grown,

Egg'm 1979,

from hard rock

thrashing

practical purposes,

McCartney did what he did when the


a

Want

arrested for marijuana possession at

Narita International Airport in Tokyo.

and was deported. For

styles,

critical

a tour of England,

when he was

'I

no discernible musical reason.

McCartney's luck changed for the worse with Back

pastiche.

far: in 'Silly

objected to the sappiness of

none too convincing.

did not appear on his albums.


Kintyre'

he had earned so

who

ability, yet

the

album had

arsenal
little

to

had

215

Epilogue

recommend

and

it,

produce disco funk

would

it

signalled the start of an alarming desire to

tracks, here

embodied

'Coming Up'. This

in

join the composition of glutinous love songs as a continuing

current in McCartney's work.

The Japanese

combined with Lennon's murder

fiasco,

of 1980, cured McCartney of his desire to

at the

tour, at least for the

end

time

being. But in 1982, just as his listeners were about to write

him

once again, he produced another of his better solo

Tug of War.

The album, which included some gorgeously


laborations with Carl Perkins
several projects that reunited

ofPeace, released in

some

1983,

and

Stevie

efforts,

songs and col-

lyrical

Wonder, was the

first

McCartney with George Martin.

was not quite

off

But

as consistent.

of
Pipes

too had

it

crossover appeal: a couple of the songs were collaborations with

Michael Jackson, then

$47 million

for the

The McCartney-

of his fame.

at the height

Jackson friendship was shattered in 1985,

when Jackson

Lennon-McCartney publishing

paid

catalogue,

outbidding McCartney and Ono.

Some of the War and Peace songs,


and

handful of new tunes,

Regards

and

to

ing Press

the soundtrack to Give

Broad Street, McCartney's unsuccessful bid

star in a film.

sound yet

along with a few Beatles remakes

made up

again,

to

By now

Smarting from that

failure,

he refashioned

and produced the trendy and only

My

to both write
his

fleetingly satisfy-

Play album in 1986.

pop market had moved on

the

to other things.

A core of

ageing Beatles fans continued to follow McCartney's work, and he


attracted
fifties,

some younger

even

when

1989,

was a

his

work was

solid,

Tug of War, yet

Nor

listeners too;

he seemed to lose his

it

but mostly,

ability to reach the

at its best.

make

he approached

his

His Flowers in the Dirt, released in

durable album on a par with


failed to

as

top of the pop charts,

Band on

the

Run

or

dent in the American pop charts.

did the well-crafted Off the Ground fate well in 1993.

Yet his 1989 and 1993 world tours proved that he could
big audiences, even
songs.

if

Those were the centrepieces of the

tour produced

album

- The Get Back

in 1990,'

still

they mainly wanted to hear Beatles and

film

film

and

live

and the Tripping

and the Paul Is Live album and video

interest

among McCartney's

of rock

oldies,

releases are

Back

draw

Wings

album each

the Live Fantastic


in 1993.

in the U.S.S.R.,

Also of

an album

recorded in 1987 and originally released only in the

216

The Beatles

Soviet Union,

the

and Unplugged, an acoustic concert recorded

American music video

There

are several

Beatles works.

MTV,

for

station in 1991.

non-rock productions among McCartney's post-

The most ambitious

is

a grandly-scaled classical work,

Paul McCartney s Liverpool Oratorio, a collaboration with the Londonbased American filmscore composer and conductor Carl Davis.
Liverpool Philharmonic commissioned
ary celebration, and
overture.

it

as part

The

of its 150th annivers-

would have been happy with

a ten

minute

But McCartney, with Davis providing technical support,

composed

a quasi-operatic

work

choir and vocal soloists, in eight

for full orchestra,

movements

mixed

choir, boys

that clocks in at about

ninety minutes.
to be sure, a straightforwardly tonal piece,

It is,

heel
is

as

is

so often the case in McCartney's

a Liverpool

to terms with

brated,

Everyman who
it.

wrestles with his

before

Along the way, conservative family values

choral and vocal writing.

McCartney might have

work does include some

And

coming

are cele-

truly beautiful

a lengthy violin solo suggested that

a concerto in him.

The premiere performance

Anglican Cathedral in Liverpool on 28 June 1991, with Davis

on the podium, was recorded and

A more

released by

recent non-rock project

1993 collaboration with a producer


the

hero

text. Its

is its

Muse

Achilles

its

sometimes touchingly, sometimes mawkishly. But whatever

the flaws of the text, the

at the

and

work -

name

the Fireman. Here

is

EMI's

classical

arm.

Strawberries Oceans Ships Forests

known

as

Youth, released under

McCartney experiments with ambient

techno-pop, and presents nine pieces

or, actually,

nine versions of a

single piece, each using different synthesizer coloration

and

effects.

For George Harrison, the breakup of the Beatles was a golden


opportunity.

He had come

of age

as a songwriter,

tions to

Abbey Road were among that album's

become

quite prolific,

and

his contribu-

highlights.

and now he could record

He had

his songs

competition or criticism from Lennon and McCartney. His


lection, All Things

Must Pass, was

a triple

album - two

also

without
first

discs of

col-

new

songs plus a collection of session jams.

Harrison began explaining his interest in Hinduism here, offering


songs about the transitory nature of life and the
struggle

compared with the quest

to be

triviality

of mundane

one with the Godhead. Songs

about more worldly matters were interspersed, and the album was

217

Epilogue

rapturously received. But his


in earthly trouble: just as

first single,

'My Sweet

Lord', landed

Lennon had been sued by Chuck

him

Berry's

publisher for lifting a line from 'You Can't Catch Me', the publisher

of the old Chiffons

hit, 'He's

So

Fine',

melodic

similarities in the choruses

the suit,

which dragged on

for

sued Harrison on the basis of

of the two songs. Harrison

lost

two decades.

In 1971 Harrison helped arrange an all-star benefit concert at

Madison Square Garden,

in

New York,

to raise relief

Bangla Desh. Bob Dylan, Eric Clapton, Ringo

and dozens more musicians played

money

Starr, Billy

in this precursor

for

Preston

of Live Aid and

other rock charity concerts, and the performance yielded an album

and

a film,

The Concert for Bangla Desh. Disputes over everything

from distribution

rights to taxes kept the proceeds

immediately toward the

from being put

relief effort.

The songs Harrison recorded

for Living in the Material

World'm

1973 furthered his Eastern religious agenda, and although the

album

reached the top of the American charts, there was growing resistance
to

what many

All Things

Me Sue You

'Sue

itual:

listeners

considered Harrison's preachy tone.

Must Pass, the

legal infighting

among

Harrison's slide

material was by

Blues', for

Still, as

on

exclusively spir-

example, offers a glimpse into the

the former Beatles.

from pop chart grace began with Dark Horse,

which was perceived

1974,

no means

as

more preaching and whining.

in

A tour

of the USA, undertaken to promote the record, was disastrous:


Harrison, unused to singing

more than

a song or

two

in

an evening,

did nothing to prepare himself vocally, and had sung himself hoarse
before the

show got on

the road. Extra Texture, in 1975, was an

improvement, and boasted


style that

Three

few appealing songs

and a

Third, released in 1976,

sermonizing replaced by some

the

Fine' lawsuit,

and

trial. Stylistically,

comment on

a video clip

made

to

the ways of the

commented on

the 'He's

promote the song parodied

Harrison's reach was fairly broad here: one hears

everything from traditional blues to light

own

ruminative

was notably more upbeat, the

satirical

material world. Specifically, his 'This Song'

So

in the

Harrison had been drawn to since his Beatles days. Thirty-

jazz,

along with Harrison's

recognizable style.

Harrison took a three-year break from the music world after Thirty
Three

and a

Third.

He had

been estranged from

his wife Pattie for

218

The Beatles

some

time; she had, in fact,

Clapton,

whom

and

ized in 1977,

began to dabble

become romantically involved with

The

she later married.


in 1978

Harrison married Olivia Arias.

in the film world, bailing

troubled Life ofBrian. Because this

first

Monty

out

Films,

He

also

Python's

experience as a film producer

proved both pleasing and lucrative, he formed

HandMade

Eric

Harrisons' divorce was final-

which made twenty-seven

his

own company,

films before Harrison

sold his interest in 1994.

Harrison's 1979 return to recording, George Harrison, was lighter


in spirit

than

its

predecessors, with songs about everything

automobile racing to psychotropic mushrooms, along with

from
a

rework-

ing of 'Not Guilty', his defensive response to the inter-Beatle squabbling during the 'White Album' sessions. But his audience, like

McCartney's, had dwindled by 1979, and

when he submitted

his

next album, Somewhere in England, at the end of 1980, he had to


face

something unthinkable

demanded

changes.

He

for a

former Beatle: his record company

complied, defiantly adding 'Blood from a

Clone', a song about record

company

interference in artistic endeav-

ours, to a line-up that already included 'Unconsciousness Rules', a

swat

The

at disco.

request for a revamp did, however, afford Harrison

an opportunity to add
tribute to

'All

Those Years Ago',

a touching,

Lennon, on which McCartney and

upbeat

overdubbed

Starr

instrumental contributions.

By 1982

seemed

it

as

music business utterly


year,

though Harrison was finding

he did nothing whatsoever

in the charts

When

dispiriting.

promote

to

a pity, really, since

it

was

energetic songs, rich in melodic charm.

from music, not returning

until 1987,

from

refreshingly spirited,

the Beatles myth,

'When

Starr

star,

Tom

Once

We Was

and

it

barely registered

again, he stepped

away

at his

home

and Clapton, and co-produced


Electric Light Orchestra, the

and included
Fab'.

teamed up with Dylan, Lynne, the


younger rock

it,

of bright, humorous,

when Cloud Nine brought him

by Jeff Lynne of the Beatles-influenced

album was

full

Must Pass. Recorded

his biggest success since All Things

studio, with contributions

his battles in the

he released Gone Troppo that

a nostalgic

Now back

1950s' legend

Petty, to record

skewering of

in the limelight,

Roy Orbison and

The Traveling Wilburys

in

he
a

219

Epilogue

The album,

1988.
order,

soon

collaboratively

composed and recorded

in short

was brimming with spontaneity and humour. Orbison died

after the record

was

released, but others kept the

recording a second album, quirkily

named Volume 3,

Wilburvs

alive,

in 1990.

Harrison has remained the most reclusive of the former Beatles,

made

but in 1991 he

and

band, singing a combination of

his

compositions and selections from

his Beatles-era

Japan with

a tentative return to the stage, touring

the support of Eric Clapton

his solo

work.

sampling of the performances can be heard on the Live in Japan

album, released
It

seemed

in 1992.

likely that

Ringo

would devote himself to

Starr

films

breakup of the Beatles, and to an extent he did. appearing

after the

several films

and even doing some

ambitions too. In

late

in

had musical

directing. Yet he

1969 and early 19^0 he recorded Sentimental

Journey, a collection of cabaret standards.

He worked

with some starry

- Quincy Jones. John Dankworth and Paul McCartney,


among them - and the music was solid enough. But Starr proved no

arrangers

He

competition for Frank Sinatra or Ella Fitzgerald.

next turned his

hand, without greater success, to country and western music.

homely Beaucoups of Blues.

travelling to Nashville to record the


Starr

had

better luck

when he

only one of the former Beatles


the others, he was able to

when he recorded Ringo,


too.

making

it

returned to rock and

who

in 19 -3.

as close to a

He

relations

draw on the songwriting

The

talents

others played

reunion project

Ringo showed that with the right material,

had an appeal.

warm

enjoyed

as the

As the

roll.

with

all

of all three

on the recording

group would come.

Starr's plaintive

baritone

sought to create the same effect on Goodnight

Vienna in 1974, but despite contributions from Lennon and other


rock

stars,

the record lacked the dazzle of

In 1975 Starrs marriage


style that

fell

apart,

its

predecessor.

and he began

a jet-setting life-

exacerbated a drinking problem which, he later said, had

developed during

his years as a Beatle.

Lennon, McCartney and

Harrison each contributed a song to Rotogravure, which featured the


graffiti-covered

door of the former Apple

19-6. Beatles connections were not

offices

enough

to

on

its

buoy up

cover.

bored-sounding performance. Ringo the 4th fared no better

and although

Starr participated in a likeable

But by

a badly-sung,
in 19

promotional television

220

The Beatles

and Art Carney

special co-starring Carrie Fisher


in 1978, that

album too proved

Poor record
time.

He

sales

to

promote Bad Boy

unsaleable.

were hardly the worst of Starr's problems

at this

nearly died of an intestinal ailment in April 1979, and a

few months

house in Los Angeles burned to the ground.

later his

Lennon's death also hit him hard. By early 1981, he had recorded most

of a

new album, with

contributions from

McCartney and Harrison,

but he did not have the heart to record the


sent along. Nevertheless, Stop

and Smell the

new

songs Lennon had

Roses

was surprisingly

upbeat, and had something that had been missing since Ringo: a sense

of humour.

But although

whom

wedding

Starr's

he had starred

in

to the actress Barbara

Bach (with

Caveman, a film about prehistoric times,

1980) rated international news coverage, partly because

and Harrison attended (and participated with


the

album

barely cracked the charts. His next,

1983, suffered a
tries,

worse

USA and

the

fate: it

was released

Britain not

Starr in a

in

McCartney
jam

session),

Old Wave, recorded

in

in only a handful of coun-

among them. With

his musical career

seemingly over, Starr dropped out of sight, making occasional appearances

on

benefit

television

and on

stage,

and recording songs

and compilation albums. Late

for various

in 1988, he recognized that

alcoholism had become an impediment in both his private and


professional

life.

He

checked into a rehabilitation center in Arizona,

and when he emerged he began making plans


assembled a

solid,

for a

comeback.

He

supportive band of ageing stars and almost-stars

from the 1960s and 1970s, and undertook a

tour, taking turns singing

oldies with his bandmates.

He
Time.
Ringo,
his

toured again in 1992, this time with a

The
it

record was Starr's best:

showed him

as

more

new album, Time

Takes

consistently pleasing than

an assured performer and songwriter, and

modest voice within a Beatlesque backing. But he was unable

set

to

persuade the rock world of the 1990s that his work merited attention,

and the album went

When

largely ignored.

the Beatles were together

and

at the height

of their fame,

the press regularly published reports saying that a breakup was

imminent. Once the Beatles did separate, the press reversed polarity

and began claiming, year


together.

The former

in

and year

out, that they

would

get back

Beatles themselves often fanned those rumours:

221

Epilogue

at

various points in the 19-os. each of

reconciliation

time.

might be fun. But

all

them hinted

The death of John Lennon should

logically

for a Beatles reunion; yet reports persisted

Julian

Lennon supposedly

Then

other

have ended hopes

through the 1980s, with

sitting in for his father.

suddenly, in 1989, a three-way collaboration of the surviving

Beatles began to

lawsuits

that perhaps a

four never said so at the same

seem

the Beatles

- was

plausible.

That November,

complex web of

and Apple against EMI, the Beatles against each

settled after

twenty years of wrangling. With relations

between the surviving former Beatles again amicable, Apple revived

had been shelved since 1970,

project that

which the Beatles would

tell

film footage
start,

from

to record

story.

documentary

years,

Apple collected

around the world. From the

getting together with his old

soundtrack music for what was turning into

ten- or fifteen-hour series.

It

in

Over the next few

sat for interviews as

television archives

McCartney spoke about

bandmates

own

their

McCartney, Harrison and Starr

a film

took him

others, but in February 1994, they assembled at

persuade the

five years to

McCartneys studio

in

East Sussex, and turned on the tape machines.

What
in

they did during those sessions, and during further sessions

February 1995, was collaborate - with Lennon - on two new songs.

On

a visit to

New York in January

1994,

McCartney obtained some

of Lennons unfinished work tapes from Ono. Back in England,

McCartney, Harrison and


settling

on two

lilting ballads, 'Free as a Bird'

added new instrumental


wrote new

Starr listened to three or four songs before

lines

lyrics for sections that

transforming Lennons rough,

moments,

if

and

'Real Love."

They

and vocal harmonies, and McCartney

Lennon had

home-made

left

only in an electronically enhanced

were back together making; new music.

unfinished, utterly

recordings. For a few


reality;

the Beatles

222

The Beatles

Biographies II: The Beatles (and


Others) Individually

Further Reading

Blake,

The Beatles

J.

after the Beatles

(New York,

Perigee, 1981)

A Life of George Harrison

Clayson, A. The Quiet One:

Biographies

I:

Baker, G. A. The
Australia

The Beatles as a Group


Downunder: The 1964

Beatles

and New Zealand Tour

(Glebe,

(London, Sidgwick and Jackson, 1990)

Ringo Starr: Straight Man or Joker

Wild and

(New

York, Paragon

House, 1992)

Wooley, 1982)

Coleman,
Braun, M. Love

Me Do:

The

Beatles' Progress

(London,

McGraw

Lennon (New York,

R. John

Hill, 1984)

Penguin, 1964)

(New York, McGraw

Brian Epstein

Davies, H. The

Beatles

Hill, 1989)

(New York, McGraw-Hill,


Giuliano, G. Blackbird: The Life and Times of

1968, rev. 1985)

Paul McCartney (New York, Dutton, 1991)

Norman,

P. Shout!

(New York,

The Beatles in Their Generation

Fireside, 1981)

Robertson,

(New York,
Pa wlowski, G.

L.

Definitive History

How

They Became the Beatles:

and A. Clayson

Sutcliffe, P.

Beatle (London, Sidgwick

Schaffner, N. The Beatles Forever (Harrisburg,

Cameron House,

Wiener,

J.

Come

Wof f inden,

around England

Proteus, 1981)

in late 1963

and paints a compellingly

them on the eve of global


access to the Beatles

biography

text,

to Paris in

January

realistic portrait

success. Davies

when he wrote

in 1967, so

expurgated his

and

and

this

authorized

although they ultimately

accounts of composing and

recording sessions. Norman's book includes


controversial theories, but offers a broader,

complete and more analytical look

Together: John

at the

Lennon

in

His Time

1984)

B. The Beatles Apart

(New York,

of

had complete

he covers their history thoroughly

offers eyewitness

Stuart Sutcliffe: The Lost

and Jackson, 1994)

(New York, Random House,

1977)

Braun, an American journalist, followed the Beatles

1964,

The Art and Music ofJohn Lennon

of the Early Years 1960-1964 (New

York, Dutton, 1989)

Pennsylvania,

J.

Birch Lane, 1990)

some
more

group than

Lennon

is

the

most vigorously chronicled of the

former Beatles, and

who had

biographer Coleman

as a general

both Cynthia Lennon and Yoko

comprehensive and accurate

Ono -

available.

is

the most

Wiener

concentrates on the political aspects of his music, and

Robertson

offers a

good overview of his works,

including obscure avant-garde projects.

Coleman

also

Davies. Pawlowski and Baker look closely at specific

presents the only detailed look at the troubled

periods in the group's history, and Schaffner offers an

Brian Epstein. McCartney, Harrison and Starr have

interesting personal overview.

co-operation and use of materials from

guarded their privacy


serious biographies.

paper, magazine

jealously,

These

and

all

life

of

and lack thorough,

rely heavily

television interviews

on newsand other

223

Further Reading

A Hard Day's

previously published material, but they marshal the

Turner, S.

historical facts efficiently.

Perennial, 1994)

Wiener, A. The

Discographies, Chronologies
Reference Works

and

Beatles:

Write

(New

York, Harper

The Ultimate Recording Guide

(Holbrook, Mass., Bob Adams,

Inc., 1994)

Lewisohn's books are essential. Painstakingly

Castleman, H. and W.

Now (Ann Arbor,

J.

Podrazik All

researched, passionately detailed

Together

and

lavishly illustrated

with unusual documents, news clippings and

Pierian Press, 1976)

photographs, they accurately establish where the

The Beatles Again? (Ann Arbor, Pierian

Beatles were,

Press, 1977)

sessions,

The

End of the

Beatles?

(Ann Arbor, Pierian

Press, 1985)

J. Beatlesongs

(New

their innovations

in their recording

came about.

and

television appearances

and recording

sessions; Recording Sessions studies the latter in

York,

finer detail.

Fireside, 1989)

Beatles Encyclopedia

(New

discographies (group and solo), are actually far-

reaching
Beatles Live!

Be sessions. The

Castleman/Podrazik collaborations, though nominally

York, Hyperion, 1992)

Lewisohn, M. The

much

Sulpy and Schweighardt offer a revealing

analysis of the fractious Get Back/Let It

Harry, B. The Ultimate

Chronicle,

the broadest overview, includes details of concerts,


radio

Dowdling, W.

what they did and,

how

(New

York,

Henry

all

compendiums

that include useful listings of

kinds, but take the story only to 1983. Wiener's

more up-to-date Ultimate Guide offers chronologies,

Holt, 1986)

discographies and videographics of both group and

The Beatles Recording Sessions (New York,

solo work. Harry's Encyclopedia

Harmony,

peripheral characters in the Beatles' story.

1988)

is

handy

for identifying

The

Turner,

Robertson, Stannard and Dowdling books examine the

The Beatles Day By Day (New York,

discography track by track, offering a variety of

Harmony, 1990)

insights,

from the

and

in

Dowdling's

case, relevant

quotations

Beatles.

The Complete Beatles Chronicle (New York,

Harmony,

1992)

Analysis
Robertson,
Beatles

J.

The Complete Guide

to the

Music of the

Hertsgaard, M.

(London, Omnibus, 1994)

Artistry

A Day

in the Life,

The Music and

of the Beatles (New York, Delacorte, 1995)

Stannard, N. The Long and Winding Road (London,

MacDonald,

Virgin, 1982)

Henry
Sulpy, D.

and

R.

Schweighardt

Drugs, Divorce

The

910, 1994)

Revolution in the

Head (New

York,

and

a Slipping Image: The Unauthorized Story of the Beatles'


'Get Back' Sessions (Princeton Junction,

I.

Holt, 1994)

New Jersey,

Mellers,

W.

the Beatles

Twilight of the Gods, The Music of

(London, Faber and Faber;

Viking, 1973)

New York,

224

The Beatles

O'Grady,

W. Pearson Summer ofLove:

Martin, G. with

The Beatles (Boston, Twayne, 1983)

T.

Making ofSgt. Pepper (London, Macmillan,


Riley, T. Tell

The

1994)

Me Why (New York, Alfred A.


Miles The

Knopf, 1988)

Beatles in Their

Own

Words (New York and

London, Quick Fox, 1978)

The most

eloquent, perceptive and historically accurate

of these

Hertsgaard,

is

who had

access to

working tapes

Beatles'

music

as

an older academic

fully grasp its aesthetic, yet

how

observations about

work

and

the general reader.


is

is

more

on the music

MacDonald's song by song

work

Words (New York and

1981)

Peebles, A. The Last Lennon Tapes (London,

BBC,

in purely

technical, Riley's

often contentious, but he includes

relating the Beatles'

Own

His

1981)

Riley's historical notes

are imperfect, but their observations

often astute. O'Grady's

in

not to

he makes some interesting

the songs

structural terms. O'Grady's

who seems

John Lennon

London, Quick Fox,

unavailable to the others. Mellers approaches the

handy

to the political

is

are
for

analysis

Sheff, D.

and

Golson The Playboy

B.

with John Lennon

and Yoko Ono (New

Interviews

York, Playboy

Press, 1981)

charts

and

cultural

Taylor, D. As Time Goes By: Living in the

Sixties

(London, Davis Poynter, 1973)

history of the era.

(London, Genesis, 1984)

Fifty Years Adrift

Interviews and Memoirs


Wenner,
Best, P. with P.

(New

Doncaster

Beatle!

The Pete Best Story

J.

Lennon Remembers (New York, Popular

Library, 1971)

York, Dell, 1985)

Williams, A. with
DiLello, R. The Longest Cocktail Party:

An

View of the Beatles (New York, Playboy

Press, 1972;

Ann

Insider's

the Beatles Away

The

Arbor, Pierian Press, with additions, 1983).

Cellarfid

ofNoise

(New

and

on the
P.

and Lennon tended

self-analytical.

also to

The Wenner,

be expansive

Sheff and Peebles

interviews are extensive and often cutting reflections

York, Souvenir, 1964)

Gambaccini,

Who Gave

York, Ballantine, 1975)

Beatles were generally forthcoming in their

interviews,

Epstein, B. with D. Taylor

The Man

W. Marshall

(New

Paul McCartney in His

(New York and London, Quick

Own

Words

Fox, 1976).

reflects

as

an

Beatles (and more). In I

on

his songwriting.

Me Mine,

Derek

assistant to Brian Epstein

Taylor,

and

Harrison

who worked

later as

head of

Apple's publicity department, adds context to

Harrison, G. I Me Mine (London, Genesis, 1980)

Harrison's

comments, and Harrison returned the

favour in Taylor's
Editorial

comments

in

D. Taylor.

Fifty Years

Adrif

(London, Genesis, 1984)

own

reading, but Epstein

and Martin have

information to impart,

Martin, G. with

(New

York,

St.

J.

Hornsby

All You

Martin's Press, 1979)

Need is Ears

Fifty Years Adnft.

Of the

memoirs, Taylor's urbane recollections make the best

drummer during

its

1970 and

who

do Pete

essential

Best, the group's

formative years, Williams,

manager, and DiLello,


to

as

who worked

paints a vivid

picture of the Beatles' troubled

at

its first

Apple from 1968

and often humorous

company

225

Further Reading

and Ned Rorem's The Music of the

Guides to Locations

as are observations

Bacon, D. and N. Maslov The

Beatles' England

(San

Joshua Rihvin. Noel Coward.

Tynan and

Francisco. 910 Press.

or

Forsyth,

I.

The

Beatles' Merseyside

(Market Dravton.

Shropshire. S.B. Publications. 1991)

Jones, R. The

Beatles' Lii'erpool

Lewisohn, M.,
Beatles'

P.

(WirraL Jones. 1991)

Schreuders and A. Smith The

London (New York.

St.

Martins

Press. 1994)

All useful, illustrated guides to the places

Beatles

worked and

where the

lived.

Miscellaneous
The Beatles Complete Scores (New York.

Hal Leonard. 1993)

This invaluable 1.158-page volume includes even- song

EMI

the Beatles recorded for

- with

all

vocal harmonies

by Tetsuya

Goro

transcribed in

the guitar voicings, bass lines,

full

drum

score

parts,

and production embellishments Hagino. Hajime Kubo and

Fujita. Yuji

Sato.

Di Franco, P. (ed.) The Beatles in Richard Lester's

A Hard Day's Night (New


Thomson,

E.

and

D.

York. Penguin. 1977

Gutman

eds.)

The Lennon

Companion (New York. Schirmer. 198-)

Thomson and Gutman


ot

have brought together a trove

important newspaper and magazine

articles,

and even

a scholarly paper or two. Several

entries are crucial:

William Mann's December 1963

criticism

review of With the Beatles,

Evening Standard article.

John Lennon Lives Like

on Christianity

Maureen Cleaves 1966

How

Does a Beatle

Live?

This', with the observations

that caused

Lennon

?rief in the L'SA.

others.

Beatles' are here,

by Luciano Berio, John Tavener.

Tom

Wolfe. Kenneth

Di Franco s book includes the

A Hard Day's Night,

script

an invaluable interview with

Richard Lester and reminiscences bv Walter Shenson.

226

The Beatles

Part

I:

Single
Love

Selective Discography

EMI Recordings 1962-70


October 1962)

(5

Me Do

(John Lennon/Paul McCartney),

4 September version
PS. I Love You (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Parlophone
Part

R 4949

of this discography covers the recordings the

made

Beatles

for

EMI

between 1962 and 1970, and

Single

Britain

and most of the world. American

which bore

different titles

January 1963)

(11

Me (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)


Me Why (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)
Parlophone R 4983

follows the sequences that were released in Great

Please Please

Ask

releases,

and song sequences - and

which went out of print when they were superseded by


the compact disc reissues, which followed the
international format
Part

covers

II

interest that

are

forms, as well as archival material released by

The

EMI

Anna (Go To Him)

after

long-playing albums, which

which usually included songs already


singles.

Boys (Luther

available

on

Because the extended-play releases

unavailable songs. However, singles that also appeared

sequence of singles and albums

Farrell)

11

Baby,

Do

You (Hal David/Burt Bacharach/

You Want To

Know A

Secret (John

Lennon/

Paul McCartney)

intact. Similarly,

Lt's

Barney Williams)

of presenting the

compilations and greatest hits albums are not included

September version

PS. I Love You (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

except in the two cases where they include otherwise

are included in the interest

Dixon/Wes

Me Why (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)


Please Please Me (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)
Love Me Do (John Lennon/Paul McCartney),

Ask

were essentially samplers, they are not included here

on albums

(Arthur Alexander)

Chains (Gerry Goffin/Carole King)

(although there are exceptions), and extended-play

albums and

1963)

Paul McCartney)

generally did not include the songs released as singles

discs,

March

Misery (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Beatles released their material in three formats:


singles,

(22

Her Standing There (John Lennon/

in various

the group's breakup.

on 45rpm

I Saw

pre-EMI recordings of historical

have been released commercially

Me

Please Please

noted only when pertinent.

OfHoney (Bobby Scott/Ric Marlow)


A Place (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Taste

There's

except where they include otherwise unavailable

Twist And Shout (Phil Medley/Bert Russell)

material.

Parlophone LP:

For each

and

release, the original

release dates are given.

numbers

Compact

on

Singles Collection

(Parlophone

The Beatles Compact Disc


C2-15852).

Compact

and extended-play

CD only in boxed sets:


EP

The non-album

The

C2 0777

disc

discs are

CD

Beatles

7 15901 2

2),

tracks have also been

(Parlophone

discs. Past

CDP 7 90043

2)

covers

1962 to 1965; Past Masters Volume 2 (Parlophone

CDP 7 90044
and 1970.

2)

PMC 1202/PCS 3042

46435

Single

From

(12 April 1963)

Me

To You (John Lennon/Paul

McCartney)

Thank You Girl (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Parlophone R

5015

Collection (Parlophone

compiled on the two Past Masters compact


Masters Volume

CD: CDP7

disc catalogue

are provided for the albums.

versions of the singles


available

catalogue numbers

includes songs released between 1965

Single

(23

August 1963)

She Loves You (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)


Til Get You (John

Parlophone R

Lennon/Paul McCartney)

5055

227

Selective Discography

With The Beatles


It

November

(22

Single

1963)

Wont Be long (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

All I've Got

to

Do

(John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

All My loving (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

(10 July 1964)

A Hard Day's Night (John

Lennon/Paul McCartney)

We Said Today (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Things

Parlophone R

5160

Don't Bother Me (George Harrison)


little
Till

Please Mister

/ Should

Postman

(Holland-Bateman-Gorman-DobbinsRoll Over Beethoven

Hold Me

Tight (John Lennon/Paul

On Me

McCartney)

Happy Just

I'm

Me Why (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)


Buy Me love (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Tell

Can't

What I Want)

(Berry Gordy/

Parlophone LP:

Any Time At All (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)


I'll

PMC 1206/PCS

CD: CDP7 46436

3045

Cry Instead (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

We Said

Things

You Can't
I'll

Hand (John Lennon/

This Boy (John

Do

That (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Be Back (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

PMC 1230/PCS

Parlophone LP:

CD: CDP7 46437

Paul McCartney)

Parlophone

Today (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

When I Get Home (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Single (29 November 1963)


/ Want To Hold Your

Dance With You (John Lennon/

And I love Her (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Not A Second Time (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Janie Bradford)

To

Paul McCartney)

(William Robinson)

Wanna Be Your Man (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

(That's

McCartney)

Lennon/

Better (John

IfI Fell (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Devil in Her Heart (Richard Drapkin)

Money

Have Known

Paul McCartney)

Garrett)

(Chuck Berry)

You Really Got a Hold

A Hard Day's Night (10 July 1964)


A Hard Day's Night (John Lennon/Paul

Child (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

There Was You (Meredith Willson)

3058

Lennon/Paul McCartney)

R 5084

Single (27 November 1964)


I Feel Fine (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Single (Germany,

Komm,

March

gib mir deine

1964)

Hand

She's

Woman

Parlophone

(John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

R 5200

(Lennon-McCartney-Nicolas-Hellmer)
Beatles For Sale

Sie liebt dich

(Lennon-McCartney-Nicolas-Montague)

Odeon

No

I'm a Loser (John

22 671

(4

Can't

Buy Me love (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

You Can't

Do

That(}o\\n Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Parlophone R

I'll

Follow the Sun (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Mr Moonlight (Roy Lee Johnson)


Mike

Tall Sally (19

long

Tall Sally (Entoris

June 1964)

Johnson/

Richard Penniman/Robert Blackwell)


/ Call Your

Down

Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Rock and Roll Music (Chuck Berry)

Kansas City/Hey, Hey, Hey, Hey (Jerry Lieber/

5114

Long

Slow

1964)

Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Baby's in Black (John

Single (20 March 1964)

December

Reply (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Stoller/Richard Penniman).

Eight Days A Week (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Words

Of Love (Buddy

Holly)

Honey Don't (Carl Perkins)

Name (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Every Little Thing (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

(Larry Williams)

/ Don't

Matchbox (Carl Perkins)

Parlophone EP: GEP

8913

Want

to

Spoil the Party (John

Paul McCartney)

Lennon/

228

The Beatles

What

Doing (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

You're

My Baby (Carl

Everybody's Trying to Be

Parlophone LP:

Perkins)

PMC 1240/PCS 3062

CD: CDP7 46438

Rubber Soul
Drive

My

(John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Ticket To Ride (John

(John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Parlophone

Me {}o\\n

Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Nowhere Man (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

(9 April 1965)

Yes It Is

1965)

Norwegian Wood (This Bird Has Flown)

You Won't See

Single

December

(3

Car (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Think For Yourself (George Harrison)


The Word (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)
Michelle (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

5265

What Goes On (John Lennon/


Beatles VI

(14

June 1965),

including the release

Bad Boy

compilation album

Paul McCartney/ Richard Starkey)

G/(John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

of:

I'm Looking Through You (John

(Larry Williams)

US, Capitol T/ST 2358


In

Single

Down

(John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Parlophone R

My Life (John

Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Wait (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

(23 July 1965)

Help! (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)


I'm

If I Needed

Someone (George Harrison)

Run For Your Life (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Parlophone LP:

5305

PMC 1267/PCS 3075

CD: CDP7 46440


HELP!

Lennon/

Paul McCartney)

August 1965)

(6

Help!'(John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Single

The Night Before (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Paperback Writer (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

You've

Got To Hide Your Love Away (John Lennon/

June 1966)

Rain (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Parlophone R

Paul McCartney)
/

(10

5452

Need You (George Harrison)

Another Girl (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)


You're

Going

to

Lose That G7r/(John

Lennon/

Yellow

(5

August 1966)

Submarine (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Eleanor Rigby (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Paul McCartney)
Ticket to Ride (John

Single

Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Parlophone R

5493

Act Naturally (Vonie Morrison/Johnny Russell)


It's

Only Love (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

You Like

Me

Too

Me What

Tell

Much (George

Harrison)

You See (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Seen a Face (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

I've Just

Yesterday (John

Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Dizzy Miss Lizzy (Larry Williams)

Parlophone LP:

CD:

PMC

CDP 7 46439

1255/PCS 3071

Revolver

(5

August 1966)

Taxman (George Harrison)


Eleanor Rigby (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)
I'm

Only Sleeping (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Love You To (George Harrison)


Here, There

and Everywhere (John Lennon/

Paul McCartney)
Yellow

Submarine (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

She Said She Said (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Single

(3

December

We Can Work
Day

It

Tripper (John Lennon/Paul

Parlophone R

Good Day Sunshine (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

1965)

Out (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

5389

McCartney)

And

Your Bird Can Sing

Paul McCartney)

{]o\\r\

Lennon/

229

Selective Discography

No One

For

(John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Doctor Robert (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)


/ Want To

Got

to

Tell

You (George Harrison)

Get You into

My Life (John

Single (24 November 1967)


Hello Goodbye (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Lennon/

Am the

Walrus (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Parlophone R

5655

Paul McCartney)

Magical Mystery Tour

Tomorrow Never Knows (John Lennon/

Parlophone LP: PMC/PCS 7009

CD: CDP7 46441

(17

December 1967)

Your Mother Should Know (John Lennon/


Paul McCartney)

Single

(8

Magical Mystery Tour (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Paul McCartney)

Am the

Walrus (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

The Fool on the Hill (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

February 1967)

Strawberry Fields Forever (John Lennon/Paul

Flying (John Lennon/Paul McCartney/

George Harrison/Richard Starkey)

McCartney)
Penny Lane (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Blue Jay Way (George Harrison)

Parlophone R 5570

Parlophone 2-EP
[Note: In the

Sgt.

Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band

(1

Band

Little

and the preceding three

Capitol

(John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

With a

MMT/SMMT
singles

Help From

My Friends (John

MAL/SMAL

were issued

November

2835).

Lennon/

Parlophone
48062

PCTC

255)

an

as

1967,

This format was

issued in Great Britain as well (19

Paul McCartney)

the Magical Mystery Tour EPs

LP, Magical Mystery Tour{zj

June 1967)

Peppers Lonely Hearts Club

Sgt.

set:

USA,

November

and on CD:

later

1976,

CDP7

2]

Lucy in The Sky With Diamonds (John Lennon/


Paul McCartney)
Gettin Better (John

Single

Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Fixing a Hole (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)


She's

Leaving

Home (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

(15

March

1968)

Lady Madonna (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)


The Inner Light (George Harrison)

Parlophone R

5675

Being for the Benefit ofMr Kite! (John Lennon/


Paul McCartney)

Single (30 August 1968)

Within You Without You (George Harrison)

When Fm

Sixty-Four (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Lovely Rita (John Lennon/Paul

McCartney)

Hey Jude (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)


Revolution (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Apple

5722

Good Morning Good Morning (John Lennon/

The Beatles (known as the 'White Album')

Paul McCartney)
Sgt.

Peppers Lonely Hearts Club

Band (reprise)

(John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

A Day in

the Life (John

Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Parlophone LP: PMC/PCS 7027

CD: CDP7 46442

(22

Back

November

1968)

in the U.S.S.R. (John

Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Dear Prudence (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)


Glass

Onion (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Wild Honey Pie (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)


Single

(7 July 1967)

All You

Need is Love (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Baby, You're a Rich

Man

Paul McCartney)

Parlophone R 5620

The Continuing Story of Bungalow

(John Lennon/

Bill

(John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

While

My

Happiness
Paul

Martha

Guitar Gently Weeps (George Harrison)


is

Warm Gun

(John Lennon/

McCartney)

My Dear (John

Lennon/Paul McCartney)

230

The Beatles

I'm So Tired (John Lennon/Paul

McCartney)

Blackbird (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Paul McCartney)

Rocky Raccoon (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)


Don't Pass

Me By (Richard

Why Don't We Do

It in the

Starkey)

McCartney)

Birthday (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)


Yer Blues (John

Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Mother

Son (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Nature's

Got Something to Hide Except Me and

My Monkey (John

Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Come

Helter Skelter (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Long (George Harrison)

Revolution i (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

September 1969)

(26

Together (John Lennon/Paul

McCartney)

Something (George Harrison)


Maxwell's Silver

Hammer (John Lennon/

Paul McCartney)

Oh! Darling (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)


Octopus's

Garden (Richard Starkey)

/ Want You

Sexy Sadie (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

long, long,

R 5786

Apple

Abbey Road

Paul McCartney)

Everybody's

Old Brown Shoe (George Harrison)

Road (John Lennon/

/ Will (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)


Julia (John Lennon/Paul

1969)

The Ballad ofJohn and Yoko (John Lennon/

(George Harrison)

Piggies

May

Single (30

(She's

So Heavy) (John Lennon/

Paul McCartney)

Here Comes the Sun (George Harrison)


Because (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

You Never Give

Honey Pie (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Me

Your Money (John Lennon/

Paul McCartney)

Savoy Truffle (George Harrison)

Sun King (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Cry Baby Cry (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Mean Mr Mustard (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Revolution p (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Polythene

Good Night (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

She

Apple 2-LP

set:

PMC/PCS

CD: CDS7 46443

7067-8

Pam

Came

(John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

in through

The Bathroom Window

(John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Golden Slumbers/Carry That Weight (John Lennon/

Paul McCartney)

Yellow Submarine

(17

January 1969)

Only a Northern Song (George Harrison)


All Together

Now (John

Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Hey Bulldog (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)


It's

All Too

All You

Much (George

rest

of the album consists of George

Martin's orchestral incidental score for the


Yellow

Submarine

End (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Her Majesty (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)


Apple LP: PCS 7088

CD: CDP7 46446

Harrison)

Need is Love (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

[The

The

Single

PMC/PCS 7070
CD: CDP7 46445 2

October 1969)

Come TogetherQohn Lennon/Paul McCartney)


Apple

film]

(31

Something (George Harrison)

5814

Apple LP:

No One's Gonna Change Our World


(12

Single (n April 1969)


Get Back (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)
Don't Let

Apple

Me Down (John
5777

December

Wildlife

Lennon/Paul McCartney)

1969), a benefit

Fund including

album

the release

Across the Universe (John Lennon/Paul


(original mix)

EMI

Starline SRS 5013

for the

World

of:

McCartney)

231

Selective Discography

Single
Let
'

You

It

(6

March

Take

1970):

Know My Name

(Look

Up

the

Out Some

Insurance

On Me Baby (Charles

Singleton/ Waldenese Hall)

Be (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Number)

Nobody s Child (Mel Foree/Cy Cohen)

(John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Apple

The Decca Audition

5833

The
Let

It

Be

(8

May

1970)

Two of Us (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Decca, on

Beatles' unsuccessful recording test for

January 1962, was released by several small

The

the 1980s.

labels in

session included:

Dig a Pony (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)


Across the Universe (John

I Me

Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Mine (George Harrison)

Like Dreamers

Do

Money

What I Want)

Dig It (John Lennon/Paul McCartney/

It

The Sheik ofAraby (Harry Smith/Ted Snyder/

Mae (Trad./Arr. John Lennon/

Frances Wheeler)

Paul McCartney/George Harrison/Richard Starkey]


I've

(Berry Gordy/

There Was You (Meredith Willson)

Till

Be (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Maggie

(John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Janie Bradford)

George Harrison/ Richard Starkey)


Let

(That's

Got a Feeling (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

To

Know Her is

Take

One After pop (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

to

Love Her (Phil Spector)

Good Care ofMy Baby (Gerry Goffin/

Carole King)

The Long and Winding Road (John Lennon/


Paul McCartney)

Memphis (Chuck

Berry)

Sure

Perkins/William Cantrell/

to Fall (Carl

Quinton Claunch)

For You Blue (George Harrison)


Get Back (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Hello Little Girl (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Apple LP: PCS 7096

Three Cool Cats (Jerry Lieber/Mike Stoller)

CD: CDP7 46447

Crying, Waiting,

Hoping (Buddy Holly)

Love of the Loved (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)


September in the Rain (Al Dubin/Harry Warren)

Part

II:

Archival Recordings

Besame Mucho (Consuelo Velasquez/Selig

Shaftel)

Searchin (Jerry Lieber/Mike Stoller)

The Beatles With Tony Sheridan


In

Hamburg

recorded

six

in

June 1961 and April 1962, the Beatles

songs as a backing band for

Sheridan, and two

more on

their

Tony

The Star Club Tapes


Recorded on

own. The recordings

were

first

31

December

released in 1977,

1962, these live recordings

and have been issued by

have been released on various labels over the years,

several small labels since then.

most recently

version

as

The Early Tapes of the Beatles

(Polydor 823 701-2,


Beatles material).

The

1984,

which

also includes

non-

Ain't She Sweet (Jack Yellen/Milton Ager)


Pratt)

The Saints (Traditional,

arr.

Sheridan/Bill

Saw Her Standing

The most complete

The Star Club

in

Tony Sheridan)

Crompton)

There (John Lennon/

Paul McCartney)
I'm

Gonna
(Joe

Sweet Georgia Brown (Ben Bernie/Maceo Pinkard/

Kenneth Casey)

Beatles Live at

Hamburg Germany 1962 (Overseas 38CP-44):

Why (Tony

The

Beatles recordings are:

Cry for a Shadow (John Lennon/George Harrison)

My Bonnie (Charles

is

Sit Right

Down And Cry Over

Thomas/Howard

Roll Over Beethoven

You

Biggs)

(Chuck Berry)

Hippy Hippy Shake (Chan Romeo)


Sweet

Little Sixteen

(Chuck Berry)

Lend Me Your Comb

(Carl Perkins)

Your Feets Too Big (Ada Benson/Fred Fisher)

CD

'

'

'

'

232

The Beatles

Where Have You Been All My

Life:

(Barry

Mann/

Live at the

BBC

Cynthia Weill)

and Shout

Twist

and

Medley/Bert Russell)

(Phil

Mr Moonlight (Roy Leen Johnson)


A

Taste

BBC

(30

November

1994)

radio performances, recorded between 1963

1965.

Beatle Greetings (spoken)

From Us

of Honey (Bobby Scott/Rick Marlow)

Lennon/Paul McCartney)

To You (John

Reminiscing (King Curtis)

On a Bus (spoken)
/ Got a Woman (Ray Charles)
Too Much Monkey Business (Chuck

Kansas City/Hey, Hey, Hey, Hey (Jerry Leiber/

Keep Your Hands OffMy Baby (Gerry Goffin/

Besame Mucho (Consuelo Velasquez/Selig

Shaftel)

There Was You (Meredith Willson)

Till

Mike

Stoller/Richard Penniman)

Dianne Lampert/Jack Cleveland)


To

Know Her is

to

I'll

Be

Love Her (Phil Spector)

Shot ofRhythm

Sure

(Sammy

On My Way (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Young Blood (Jerry Leiber/Mike Stoller/Doc Pomus)

Queenie (Chuck Berry)

Falling in Love Again

Berry)

Carole King)

Nothin' Shakin' (Cir'mo Colacrai/Eddie Fontaine/

Little

Riding

And Blues (Terry Thompson)


Perkins/William Cantrell/

to Fall (Carl

Quinton Claunch)

Lerner/

Some Other Guy

Frederick Hollander)

Leiber/Mike

(Jerry

Stoller/

(Tommy Roe)
Ask Me Why (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Thank You Girl (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Be-Bop-A-Lula (Gene Vincent/Tex Davis)

Sha La La La La! (spoken)

Ritchie Barrett)

Sheila

Hallelujah I Love

Red Sails

Her So (Ray Charles)

in the Sunset

Everybody's Trying to

Matchbox (Carl

Be

My Baby (Carl

You (Hal David/Burt Bacharach/

(Mama) (Arthur Crudup)

Carol (Chuck Berry)

(Chuck Berry)

/ Wish I Could Shimmy Like


Tall Sally (Entoris

It's

Barney Williams)
That's All Right

Perkins)

Perkins)

I'm Talking About You

Long

Baby

(Jimmy Kennedy/Will Grosz)

My Sister Kate (Piron)

Johnson/Richard Penniman/

Robert Blackwell)

Soldier

Of Love (Cason/Moon)

Rhyme (spoken)

Little

Clarabella (Pingatore)

Gonna

I'm

I Remember You (Johnny Mercer/Victor Schertzinger)

(Joe

Sit Right

Crying, Waiting,

The Beatles at the Hollywood Bowl


Concert recordings from

23

August

(6

May

iy6<\{*)

1977)

and

30 August 1965(f)
Twist
She's

Woman

Russell)'

(John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Ticket to Ride (John

Buy

Things
Roll

Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Me Love (John

Know Her
Taste

Long

Over Beethoven (Chuck Berry)*

Boys (Luther

Dixon-Wes

A Hard Day's Night (John

My Loving (John

to

On Me (William

ofHoney (Bobby Scott/Ric Marlow)

Tall Sally (Entoris

Johnson/Richard Penniman/

I Saw Her Standing There (John Lennon/


Paul McCartney)

The Honeymoon Song (Theodorakis/Sansom)

Johnny

B Goode (Chuck

Berry)

Memphis, Tennessee (Chuck Berry)

Lennon/Paul McCartney)'

Lucille (A. Collins/Richard

Lennon/Paul McCartney)*

Can't

Buy

Me Love (John

From Fluff to You (spoken)


lill

Long

Crinsk Dee Night (spoken)

Johnson/Richard Penniman/

Robert Blackwell)*
LP:

Parlophone

EMTV 4

Penniman)

Lennon/Paul McCartney)

She Loves You (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)*


Tall Sally (Entoris

Robinson)

Love Her (Phil Spector)

Farrell)*

Help! (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)'


All

is

Robert Blackwell)

Lennon/Paul McCartney)

We Said Today (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)*

Hoping (Buddy Holly)

You Really Got a Hold

Dizzy Miss Lizzy (Larry Williams)

Can't

You

Biggs)

Dear Wackl (spoken)

To

and Shout (Phil Medley/Bert

Down and Cry Over

Thomas/Howard

There Was You (Meredith Willson)

Discography/Videography

Selective

233

A Hard Day's Night (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)


Have A Banana! (spoken)
/ Wanna Be Your Man (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)
Just A Rumour (spoken)
Roll Over Beethoven

Videography

(Chuck Berry)

All My Loving (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

We Said Today (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Things
She's

Sweet

Woman

(John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Little Sixteen

Filr

(Chuck Berry)

A Hard Day's Night (1964),

1822! (spoken)

Lonesome Tears in

My Eyes (Johnny

Burnette/

Dorsey Burnette/Burlison/Mortimer)

Help! (1965), Magical

Mystery Tour (1967), Yellow Submarine (1968), Let

It

Be

(1969-70)

Nothin' Shakin' (Cirino Calacari/Eddie Fontaine/

A Hard Day's Night is

Diane Lampert/Jack Cleveland)

also available

on

CD-ROM

The Hippy Hippy Shake (Chan Romero)

(Voyager, 1993), which additionally includes the

Glad All Over (Bennett/Tepper/Schroeder)

complete

IJust Don't Understand (Wilkin/Westberry)

Bruce Eder.

So

How Come

and an essay by

script, the theatrical trailer

(No One Loves Me) (Boudleaux Bryant)

I Feel Fine (John Lennon/Paul

McCartney)

Documentaries

Lennon/Paul McCartney)

I'm a Loser (John

Everybody's Trying to

Be

My Baby (Carl

Perkins)

Rock and Roll Music (Chuck Berry)


Ticket To Ride (John

Lennon/Paul McCartney)

The Compleat

Beatles (1982)

good

career

overview with interesting performance

clips,

but with

- An

effective

inaccuracies in the narration.

Dizzy Miss Lizzy (Larry Williams)


Kansas City/Hey, Hey, Hey, Hey (Jerry Leiber/

Mike

Stoller/Richard Penniman)

Set the Fire to the Lot! (spoken)

Matchbox (Carl Perkins)


I Forgot

to

Remember

to

The

Beatles:

The

Brothers' 1964 documentary, What's Happening! The


Beatles in the

Forget (S. Kesler/C. Feathers)

First U.S. Visit (1990)

Apple production that uses footage from the Maysles

Sullivan

USA and

Show and

the

performances from the Ed

Washington Coliseum concert.

Love These Goon Shows! (spoken)


/ Got

to

Find My Baby (Chuck Berry)

Ooh! My Soul (Richard Penniman)

Other Beatles performance footage

Ooh! My Arms (spoken)

Go!, a British television

Don't Ever Change (Gerry Goffin/Carole King)

performances in Around the

Slow

Down

(Larry Williams)

Honey Don't (Carl Perkins)


Love

Me Do

CDP 8

31796 2

Single (20 March 1995)


Baby,

It's

You (Hal David/Burt Bacharach/

Barney Williams)
I'll

Follow the Sun (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

Devil In Her Heart (Richard Drapkin)


Boys (Luther

Dixon/Wes

EMI/Apple 7243

82073

Farrell)
2

programmme. Their own


Beatles, a

1964 television

special that also featured other artists, has


as Ready,

(John Lennon/Paul McCartney)

CDs: EMI/Apple

included in the

is

commercially released instalments of Ready, Steady,

been released

Steady Go! Special Edition. In Japan, the

group's 30 June 1966 performance at

been released commercially.

Budokan Hall

has

'

'

Z34

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Ai:.:,s:

77*

Baby, If*
"A

Day in die life'


--:
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150, 1523, 155,

"A

Hard Day's Night 96-7,

:::.

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'>':?<:

ioi
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103,107

J Hard Days Nig/kl&m) 84-6, *$,


95-7,
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:-,

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~:,-\-\

A;.::

'-.-,:<-

A.:.;* ;:

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Abbey Road studios 47,

1:

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"

A;:

Across the Universe 169, 172,

-.

r.i.-:-'

\ ..."

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'

--;/;-

'.

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A,:-: >: At.: <-':::,>:

':.-

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Another Girf

114

TheBm US.
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Visit

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112, 114-15, 117

-;

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55 68 103
-

: -

'

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.'..;-.

Brown, James

101

Byrds ioj,

133, 154

The (radio show) 68

Second Album, The 90, 92

A;.l^ .v;

.-

.,-,

/'.

Beatles

h-;--.-

.i

h-

Beauamps Blues I album ) 219

161,

180-4

Any Time at AD* 98, 101


197-9*

?>:

114

Apple

163, 173, 774, 175, 186,

a-..-.

(Pete Best band) 31

-'.-..-

(BBC)

Beatlesfar Sale (album) 30, 93,

106-10,

..-..-

;-.--..

>. --:

-.

;.

The:
'-.

:-.

r...

V7(a0mm) 90, 92,

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f-t-.tr .--;

:-,-.-.:

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154,180

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.".cr.;.

A:;::

Bcach Boy 61-2, 82,

BeatH
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-;.t

.,;:

;.;,:

:.-y

.:

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173, 176-8,

Love Her* 98

.".

0:,;

;,.? j

r.

"--=
!

A^/^y, 7^r ('White Album")

Love* (telecast)

^.

-:=:

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Blue Suede Shoes' 207

ii

Air.-:

You Need

And I

:y

214

Beatles

9-10, 67, 162-3

A:

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-<:<:.

162-3, '65, 193


Is

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r.

h^-A-.:-iA,...;

AD Those Years Ago* 2ii


AD Together Now* 16$
AD You Need Is Love* 9-10, 130,

;:

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Bbckpcks

h.

':.

ODa 67

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A^:;y: A:;*

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<i

:i

u..

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r.

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A.: ;.;:,-

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i"

':.:-:

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Band en the Hun (album)


':.-.

2* 31, 32, 35, i"

,:-: -r

180

r-'-

.'.

USSR, (album)

A;..--: A;-.:-

x.

-.

-;.::

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Black,

Aii-7. ;-/-

114, 116

''.-..i

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Act Naturally

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66, 70, 94, 114, 138-9

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215-16

51, 51, <$,

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:y

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Back in the ILSlA/ 180

M^

196-7, 200-1, 203-5,

,.

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~rs:

:, :.

.A

-.."'..;._.

.-.-

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r,"':

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59

.:*.*?

'Back in the

-;

--.-

.',;-

'-,:
:- i -

/.-

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<..-.

A;.'.

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:-

Ask Me Why 47, 58, 61


AT; '-' .-..-.. y-j
\ -:-.'..A : ,-. :-'.

-. .:.x

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"

87

Asher, jane 106, 116, 167

picture captions,

~rs.

.-.

',;.r.t.

'.,Ai:..--.

12, 153, 155,

A:

A.'.'

'A-:

~r-.:.--.

9^146-7

l',:
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Cage, John

.;

.jr.

1',;

172

:^

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\<

V.

y
'.-

/'.

y,

235

Indc

(Wendy)

Carlos, Walter

Dankworth, John 46,

201

Dark Horse (album)

Carney, Art 220


'Carry That Weight" 201, 204

Datebook (magazine) 147

Cass and the Cassanovas 30

Davies,

'Catswalk' 42

Davis, Carl 216

Caveman

220

(film)

Rod

Davis,

Cavern Club (Liverpool)

9, 57, 41,

41, 42, 43, 44, 45, so, 62,

67

Ray

Thomas

'Devil in

Her

'Dig

Chiffons 82, 217

'Dig a Pony 193

'Child of Nature' [73

'Dizzy Miss Lizzy'

'Circles' 173

'Do You Want

Alan 142

Clapton, Eric

207, 217, 218, 219


Clark, Dave, Five

90

to

Know

a Secret'

Together' 24, 203, 20s, 212

'Coming Up'

215

Concert for Bangla Desh, The

(album) 217

Bill,

The'

'Don't

181

Cooke, Deryck

12,

74

Cookies 59

'Fixing a Hole' 141, 156, 158

18, 21

193,

194

Coventry Cathedral, Acorns for

Fly (film) 211

Dr Feelgood 107

'Flying' 42, 167

'Dr Robert' 142

Fonda, Peter 144

Drifters 188, 192

'Fool

My Car'

130, 131, 133

Duchamp, Marcel

172

No

'For

You

Hill' 167

One'

139, 142,

Blue' 193,

Dufay, Guillaume 24

Four Seasons 82
Four most 67

83, 120, 154, 188,

Freddie and the Dreamers 90

Eastman, Linda

see

McCartney,

French, Louise see Harrison, Louise

'From

Linda

Eddy,

Duane

30, 42

Cox, Tony

'Eight

Days

Week'

Me

From Us

198

to You' 63, 66, 73, 109

to

You (radio show) 68

Fury, Billy 30

106, 109

Crawford, Michael 147

'Eleanor Rigby' 142, 144, 156

Garry, Len 20, 22

Cream

Electric Light Orchestra 218

Gentle, Johnny

182, 183

Crickets 27

'Crosstown

Electronic
Traffic' 133

'Cry Baby Cry'

181

'Cry for a Shadow' 41-2, 69

144

207

'Free as a Bird' 221

Cox, Maureen 106, 114


211

on the

'For

Dylan, Bob 82-3,

Eastman and Eastman

Peace 210

Flowers in the Dirt (album) 215

Fluxus 172

12

Costello, Elvis 14

Swann 46

Flanders and

Me Down' 192,
Pass Me By' 115, 181

217, 218-19

Copland, Aaron

220

Fitzgerald, Ella 13, 86

69

Double Fantasy (album) 212

'Drive

'Continuing Story or Bungalow

172

Fisher, Carrie

Fats 30, 169

'Don't Let

'Come

Mia

Domino,

Cochran, Eddie

127, 20~, 211

Family Way, The (film) 147, 210


Farrow,

Donegan, Lonnie

4s

My

207

'Don't Bother Me' 69, 70

'Cold Turkey'

to

Me and My

Extra texture (album) 217


114,

Clone/ Nine (album) 218


21

Year' 193

181

Fireman 216

59,

Hard

Baby' 10"

192-3, 208

Clayton, Eddie, Skiffle Band 48

Colman, Sid

Monkey'

'Doctor Robert' 144

Donays

'Everybody's Trying to Be

^4- 59. 61

137, 182, 183, 189,

2n

Hide Except

Heart' 61, 69

Chevalier, Maurice 129

Civil,

107

Got Something

'Everybody's

201

Dietrich, Marlene 73
It'

43,

129, 129, 163,

19, 61,

Had

'Everybody

Chapman, Norman

31

42-6,

66, 78, 80,

9%

'Every Night'

108, 131, 146

Decca Records 4s

Despres, Josquin 24

30

Everly Brothers

Chapman, Mark David 2n

13,

,'7,

'Every Little Thing' 106, 109

20

'Day Tripper'

55, 58,

86-7, 04, 126, 127,


166-7,

Dekker,

Ray

47, 48, 49,

14

'Chains' 59

Charles,

Epstein, Brian 9, 37,

219

217

Elephant's

Sound'(album)

Memory

Emerick, Geoff

EMI

record

155,

[73; 218

German language

177

Gerry and the Pacemakers

9, 55,

70-1,

recordings 85
?o,

90

'Get Back' 188-9, i9--v '94-

200

'End, The' 204-

31

George Harrison {album)

212, 213

company

76, 85, 90,

186, 210

201,

Get

207

Huh (album/film)

see Let It

He

236

The Beatles

'Getting Better' 156

Hendricks, Geoffrey 172

'If

Fell' 71, 98,

'Gimme Some

Hendrix, Jimi

133, 183

'If

Needed Someone'

'Her Majesty'

188, 201,

Truth' 211

'Girl' 130, 133, 134

Give

My Regards to

Broad Street

Hi> 144

'Give Peace a Chance'

12, 195, ip$,

the Sun' 203, 205

Got

You've

Trouble'

115

Be Back' 100-1, 107

On My Way'

'I'll

Be

'I'll

Cry

Herman's Hermits 90

Onion' 180-1

'Glass

Comes

'Here

'If

'I'll

Here We Go (radio show) 68

207, 211

101, 131, 133,

203-4

205

and Everywhere'

'Here, There

(film) 215

100

68

Instead' 99-100, 101,

107, 130

So Fine' 217

Follow the Sun' 30, 107-8

Gleave, Elsie see Starkey, Elsie

'He's

'God'

Hewson, Richard 208

'I'm a Loser' 110, 112, 120

Goffin-King, 'Chains' 59

'Hey Bulldog'

'I'm

Down'

'Golden Slumbers' 201, 204

'Heyjude'

'I'm

Happy Just

Gone Troppo (album)

Higgins, Dick 172

211

'Good Day Sunshine'

173, 218

'Hold

142, 144

'Good Morning Good Morning'

'Good Night'

169, 172

173, 176, 177, 187, 196

Me Tight'
Buddy

Goons, The 46

'Honeymoon Song'

Gore, Lesley 82

Hopkin, Mary

Lew

My Life'

142

no, 180,

Pie'

How I Won

the

Haley,

Hamburg
35, 41,

War

(film) 146,

Love Her

So' 30

27, 28, 31-2, 32, 34-5, 34,

59

Warm

Gun'

180, 201

Am

the Walrus'

12, 163,

Name'

Call Your

Don't

Want

to

Don't

Want

to See

167

23, 28, 49, 121,

137, 141, 174

Harrison, Harold (father) 22

Be

a Soldier' 211

Feel Fine' 106-7, IQ 8' I0 9>

Lost

My Little

Girl'

n7

23-4

Me Mine' 207, 208


I Me Mine (album) 185
I

Need You'

Saw Her Standing There'

114, 117-18,

122
59, 61,

Should Have

Known

Better' 98

'Heartbreak Hotel'

Wanna Be Your Man' 67, 67, 69


Want to Hold Your Hand' 71-2,

Want

Want You

18

Hello Goodbye' 168

67

'Help!' 124, 125-6

Help! (f\\m)

14-21, 129

112, 113, 114,

11^

117-18, 118, 121, 122, 124-5, I2 5>


133-

136

'Helter Skelter' 180

211

newspaper) 136

'It

Brothers

59, 62,

77

Won't Be Long' 69

Too Much'

'It's

All

'It's

Only

'It's

for You'

165

Love' 129

67

'I've

Got

'I've

Just Seen a Face' 129

a Feeling' 193

So Heavy)'

196-7, 203, 205


I

Will' 181

Will Always Be in Love


You' 30

Jagger,

Mick 67

James, Carroll 83

Jan and Dean 82

to Tell You' 144


(She's

Jackson, Michael 215

James, Dick 199

78, 82-3, 83, 84, 85

Little Girl' 24, 30, 45,

Karma' 196,

63,83

(mother) 22

39

International Times (underground

Isley

Harrison, Peter (brother) 22

Help! (album)

'Inner Light, The' 168, 169, 172

You Again'

Harrison (French), Louise

Hello

film) 213

10

of All the Danger' 25

'In Spite

'Instant

101

Harrison, George

Mood'

India 166, 168-9, 172-

116

Hanton, Colin 22
is

173, 211

My Life' 130, 133-4,


My Room' 61-2

'In

'In

46-7, 58

Happiness

About You' 62

Indian music 149, 168, 174, 175

21

Bill 17, 85

'Hallelujah!

Sleeping' 139

(documentary

Griffiths, Eric 20, 22

Gunter, Arthur

Only

'I'm Talking

'In the

It'

'Greensleeves' 10

Looking Through You' 130

'I'm

68

173

How Do You Do 47, 50,


How Do You Sleep?' 211-12

Graves, Harry 48

'I'm

Imagine: John Lennon

181

147, 152

199

Dance With

to

Imagine (album)

'Honey

Grade,

107, 188

18, 25, 27,

Goodnight Vienna (album) 219

'Got to Get You Into

69

59,

'Honey Don't' 107

178, 181

124

You' 99

Hollies 90
Holly,

155, 158

'I'll

Janov,

Dr Arthur

'Jealous

Guy'

211

173, 211

Jim Mac Jazz Band

With

18

John Moores Exhibition 26-7

Johnny and the Moondogs

25

Johns, Glyn 192-3, 194, 207, 208

237

Index

Quincy

Jones,

Let It Be ( Get Back) (album) 30,

219

188, 189, 192-4, 196,

'Julia' 181

Let

'Junk' 173, 213

It

Be {Get Back)

207-9

107

Humphrey 46

Lyttelton,

(film) 188-9,

McBean, Angus 194

ipo, 192-3, 207, 215

Hey Hey Hey'

'Kansas City/Hey

Lynne, Jeff 218-19

Levis, Carol 25

McCartney (album) 208-9,

Lewis, Jerry Lee 17

McCartney

Keeler, Christine 80

'Like

Dreamers Do' 45

McCartney, Jim

Hans

Lilly,

Beatrice 43

McCartney, Linda

Keller,

Kennedy

12

Lindsay-Hogg, Michael

Jacqueline 81

Kennedy, John

F.

80, 81

Little

Kirchherr, Astrid 27, 28, 32, 47, p3

Mark

Koschmider, Bruno 31-2, 34-5


Kramer, Billy

J.

18, 21, 22, 58, 62,

68, 82, 84, 107, 124, 188, 189

John 107

(mother)

Live and Let Die' 213-14

Live in

67, 68

New

York City (album) 213

Live Peace in Toronto (album) 207,

'Lady Madonna' 168, 169, 172

Liverpool

Lawrence, Steve 812

Liverpool Institute

Le Carre, John 80

School

Lead Belly (Huddie Ledbetter)


Leary,

Timothy

'Leave

My Kitten Alone'

Lennon, Alfred

Lennon

137,

(first

18

57, 83, ps,

169

16, 20, 28, 32, so, 51,

132, 13s, 138,

Own

Write 17, 95,

Skywriting by

97

Word ofMouth

Spaniard in the Works

Lennon

ps,

17,

17

127

(Stanley), Julia (mother)

16-17,

18,

20, 24, 25, 181

Lennon, Julian (son)

50, 112,

163-8, 164, 1 6s

Magritte, Henri 136

12,

73-4

Marcos, Imelda 146

'Martha

'Long Tall

Sally' 18, 21

Martin, George

EP

51, 5/, 57,

103

208

My

jo1,

La

10

Dear' 180
14,

46-7, 48,

93, 101, 113, 116, 120,

121, 124, 129, 133, 134, 139,

Lopez, Trini 84

142, 147, 148-9, iso, iS2, 155,

Lost Lennon Tapes, The (radio

157, JJ7,

'Love of the Loved' 45, 67


'Love

Me

Do'

61, 103,

161, 167, 181, 192,

200, 201, 208, 215

series) 213

9, 16, 25, 47, 50, 57,

Marvellettes 59

Mascaro, Juan 168

Mason, David

109

'Love You To' 142, 144

'Matchbox' 30

150

'Lovely Linda, The' 213

Maxwell Davies, Peter

'Lovely Rita' 156

'Maxwell's Silver

Les Stewart Quartet 25

Low, Jackson

Lester,

177, 221

Richard

85, 97, 100, 108, 121,

124, 146, 147, 152

'Let

It

Be' 165, 193, 197, 208

50,

58-9, 61, 66, 69,

Lennon, Sean (son) 212

155,

161, 166,

166, 167, 172, 181

'Marseillaise,

193,

(film) 186, 187

Magical Mystery Tour (album) 42,

Mann, William

173

Tall Sally

207

The

'Magical Mystery Tour' 164

London Town (album) 214

Long

124

193,

Christian,

'Long, Long, Long' 182

The'

Howl 94

85,

Maharishi Mahesh Yogi

'Long and Winding Road,

Bag One lithographs 203

In His

Grammar

26

(album) 217

176, 18s, IP4, ipS, 203

Daily

26

Liverpool Philharmonic

Lomax, Jackie

Cynthia

no, i2p,

17,

Living in the Material World

107

wife) 26, 50, 50, 75, 106,

Lennon, John

21, 22,

(Roger) 101

Macmillan, Iain 200

Magic

30, 31

Orchestra 216

203

(father) 1617, 18

(Powell),

112, 155, 162,

75, \6ff, ip,

Liverpool College of Art

214

213,

McKern, Leo

'Maggie Mae'

209, 211

Denny

18, 25

Maciunas, George 172

Krause, Bernie 186

Laine,

IP4

McCartney (Mohin), Mary

McGuinn, Jim

Live in Japan (album) 219

14

ip4, 195, 213-14

28, fi, 61, po, 132,

13S, 141, iso, iS2, 167, i6p, ipo,

Richard

Little Willie

Klein, Allen 198-9, 205

Knopfler,

207

192,

Kinks 159

(father) 18

McCartney, Paul

187,

2I 3

II (album) 214-15

Mac

Lowe, John 'Duff

172
22, 25

Lucier, Alvin 12

'Lucy

in the

I55> 158

Sky with Diamonds'

188, 201, 203,

12

Hammer' no,
204

Mayall, John 183

'Maybe I'm Amazed'


'Mean

Mr

Mustard'

213
188, 201,

204

238

The Beatles

Meet

Off the Ground (album)

the Beatles (album) 83

Pop Go

215

"Oh! Darling' 188, 197, 203

Mellers, Wilfrid 12

Menlove Avenue (album)


Mersey Beat (magazine)

My Love'

'Oh

213

jp, 43, 95

Mersey Sound, The (television

the Beatles (radio

show)

68

Powell, Cynthia see Lennon,

211

'Old Brown Shoe' 196

Cynthia

Old Wave (album) 220


'One After 909'

documentary) 72

55,

Presley, Elvis 13, 17, 18, 19, 21, 22.

25, 30, 57, 193,

207

87

81, 84,

'Michelle' 129, 130

'Only the Lonely' 24

Press to Play

Milk and Honey (album) 212-13

'Only a Northern Song' 156-7, 165

Preston, Billy 173, 189, 192, 193,

Milligan, Spike 46, 85

Ono, Yoko

Mind Games (album)

212

'Misery' 61-2

Modern Jazz Quartet


Mohin, Mary

Pritchard,

210-12, 221

Proby

14, 24, 51,

Monty Python

Owen, Alun

218

Moore,

Tommy

'Moovin'

'n'

Love You' 47,

'P.S. I

Paolozzi,

label 13, 59, 61, 69, 82, 131

'Mr Moonlight' 107

Parlophone Records
Path

'My

programme)

NEMS

Lord' 217

Enterprises 198-9

115

Pakistanis' 188-9

'No Reply' 109-10

'Nobody

Know'

116

'Norwegian Wood'
'Not Guilty'

130, 133

173, 183, 218

'Not a Second Time' 69, 74

Nowhere man'

130, 133, 134

hs, Phil

opus's
-

82

Garden'

203

Ram

(album)

Rape

(film) 211

212, 213

'Real Love' 221

Rebels 22

Record Retailer magazine 72

Peter

and Gordon

Redding, Otis

Petty,

Tom

'Respect'

116

218-19

Pickett,

Wilson

131, 133

131, 133

'Revolution'

Kim 80

13,

176-8, 180, 187

Revolver (album) 32, 136, 142-5

Richard, Cliff 41, 84


Richards, Keith 67

101

Rifkin, Joshua 12

'Piggies' 182

ofPeace (album)

Riley, Terry 12

215

Plastic

Ono Band

Plastic

Ono Band (album)

Ringo (album) 219

207
25,

Ringo the 4th (album) 219-20

Robinson, Smokey 188

209, 211
'Please Mister
'Please Please

Postman

Me'

59,

109

14, 24, 50-1,

Me (album)

'Rock Around the Clock'

'Rock Island Line'

59, 61, 72,

103, 194

Rock

'n

17, 85

18

'Rock and Roll Music'

54-5, 58, 61, 62

'Polythene Pam' 188, 201, 204


188, 197,

175

Red Rose Speedway (album) 213-14

Please Please

')b-La-Di, Ob-La-Da' 180

Radha Krishna Temple

Perkins, Carl 17-18, 30, 68, 86, 101,

Pipes

Northern Songs 199

203, 20, 24, 25

Raving Texans 48

Phillips, Percy 25

103

Men

'Penny Lane' 150

Philby,

'Night Before, The'

Boys

Rattles 14$

215

Paul McCartneys Liverpool

107, 112, 188, 215


58

Newly, Anthony 43

Jimmy

Paul Is Live (album)

Penderecki, Krzysztof 153

New Musical Express chart


Newby Chas 35-6
Nicol,

46-7

9,

News 94

Oratorio 216

41, 43

Love' 213, 214

'My Sweet

'No

132

Quarry

for

20

'Rain' 138, 139, 142, 143, 150, 187

Murray, Mitch 47

'My Bonnie'

50, 57, 59, 61

'Paperback Writer' 142, 143, 145,

'Mull of Kintyre' 214

(television

The 137

Style' 21

Eduardo 34

146, 187

Music ofLennon and McCartney

on the

Quarry Bank High School

101, 114

17,

181

116

Profumo, John 80, 80

'Puttin'

19

31

Groovin" 30

John 42

J.

85, 95

Owens, Buck

'Mother Nature's Son'

Motown

P.

Psychedelic Experience,

'Over the Rainbow'

Blues 213

218-19

Orton, Joe 125

'Money' 69, 86, 207

Moody

196, 197, 217

181, 186, 194, 195, ip$, 203, 203,

Orbison, Roy

175

McCartney, Mary

see

172, 175-6, 176, 178,

(album) 215

18,

107

Roll (album) 24, 32,

203, 212

'Rocker' 192

Rockshow (album) 214


'Rockv Racoon' no, 180

239

Inae

Side by Side (radio show) 68

Over Beethoven 69

'Roll

Rolling Stones 67, 67, 90,

131,

Silver Beats 2

188, 198

Rorem, Ned

Sinatra,

Command Variety

Performance (1963)

Rubber Soul (album)

73, 73

38, 42, 113,

34, 35, 38,

Frank

Smith,

Man-

Takemitsu, Toru

Elizabeth (Mimi)

(Lennon's aunt)

Snoiv White
(film)

12

20-2

16,

Tavener, John

'Taxman'

and the

Seven Dwarfs

Taylor,

24

Some Time

York City

Dance

for

Me' 192

'Something'

Somewhere

James

173

Teddy Bears

61

'Teddy Boy'

192, 193

'Tell

188, 197

'Tell

England i\%

in

_
i

142, 143, 144

Teenagers Turn (radio show) 55

(album) 212

18

Saturday Club (radio show) 68


'Save the Last

New

in

12

Tao Te Chingi6S

'Some Other Guy' 9

Takako 172

San Francisco

47

Takahashi, Aki 12

43

13,

Smith, Mike 45

Life' 24, 130, 133

Rzewski, Frederic

Saito,

31, 32,

Smile (film) 211

129-31, 133-4, 142, [54

'Run For Your

(Stu) 26-7, 26, 28, 30,

Silver Beetles 27, 31

12

Rotogravure (album) 219-20

Roval

Fergusson Victor

Sutclifte, Stuart

Love Songs' 214

'Silly

Me What You See' 115,


Me Why' 99-100, 108

120

Temptations 188

'Savoy Truffle 182


Scott.

John 120

'Sour Milk Sea' 173

'That Means a Lot'

Spector, Phil 207-8

'That

'Searchin' 4s

Stanley, Julia see

Sellers, Peter 46, 85, 186, i8~. 219

Stanley,

Lonely Hearts Club

Band' 153-4

Elizabeth see Smith,

Elizabeth

Band (album)

9, 12, 41, 92, 130,

135, ijy, 136, 141, 150,

152-60,

Starke}',

mother) 4""-8

Richard

see Starr,

Ringo

Steele,

Shankar, Ravi

'Step Inside Love'

Came

In

Through

room Window'

the Bath-

188, 201,

204

'She Loves You' 10, 66, 70, 71,

Shea Stadium concert,

New York

Shenson, Walter 97

'She's

Tony

Leaving

'She's a

Home'

Woman'

156, 158

107, 109

Till There

(album) 220

show

'Summertime'

Shotton, Pete 20

'Sun King'

'Shout' 77

Sunday Night

78, 80, 83,

204

at the

London

Palladium (television pro-

gramme) 72-3

Time Takes Time (album) 220


is

Love Him'

to

Tomorrow Never Knows'

61

137-9,

160

Torch, Sidney, and the Queen's


Hall Light Orchestra 46

49
87

low nsend, Ken

138,

Townshend, Pete

31

71, 188,

"

Tower Ballroom (New Brighton)

Sue You Blues' 217

Shi relies 59

You' 45, 68, 69,

143. 150, 154,


12, 14,

Strong, Barrett 69

Me

Was

To Know Him

49

'Strawberry Fields Forever'

Sullivan, Ed,

Deadly

70, 73- 98

Strawberries Oceans Ships Forest

'Sue

'This Boy' 71, 74, 83, 118

117, 118

Roses

90, 136, 146, 148-50, 155

25, 35, 39, 39, 41

31

and a Third

'Ticket to Ride' 108, 114, 116,

(album) 216

(1965) 126, 127

'Sheik of Araby, The' 45

Man Theme'

Tibetan Book of the

67

and Smell the

30, 47, 48, 48,

for Yourself 131, 133

'Third

'This Song' 217

Stockhausen, Karlheinz 136


Stop

'Think

'Three Cool Cats' 45

197

Storm, Ron', and the Hurricanes

73> 85

'She Said She Said' 144, 150

Sheridan,

131,

no

Said Today' 98

(album) 217

4-

Tommy 46

Shakespeare, William 167


133, 174, 17$

Ringo

48, 49, 141, 178, 187,

Stax-Volt label 42, 116,

We

Thiry- Three

Starkey, Richard (Starr's father)


Starr,

752, 158, 163

Shadows 41-2

'She

'There's a Place' 61-2,

62, 189

(Starr's

Theodorakis, Mikis 68

'Things

58,

Starkey (Gleave), Elsie

Peppers Lonely Hearts Club

Sgt.

213

That'll Be the Day' 25

Julia

Star-Club (Hamburg) 46,

'Sexy Sadie' 181


'Sgt. Pepper's

Mary

Mary

'September in the Rain 45

Lennon,

115, 116

Would Be Something'

59

14, 159,

180

Traveling W'ilburys. The (album)

218-19

i
240

NO

Xi9?99 03194 793 $ jft

*5

Boston KUb t Sicily.


3al*0f1hto material tenefltsthUbiaq
Tripping the Live Fantastic (albumi)

'When

Troy, Doris 173

'When

Tug of War (album) 215

'While

'12-Bar Original' 42,

131

'Twenty Flight Rock'

21

'Twist

and Shout'

'Two of Us'

White,

107

'Unconsciousness Rules' 218

197, 201,

210

We Do

It

In the Road'

to

Going

to

Know' 166

Lose That

Williams, Larry 114

'You've

Got

to

Hide Your Love

Away' 120

Wilson, Brian 61-2, 154

146-7

Unplugged (album) 216

Wilson, Harold j/

Photographic

Up Your Legs

Willson, Meredith 45

Acknowledgements

Forever (film) 211

Wings 213-14

Ustinov, Peter 46

With the Beatles (album)


Frankie 82

Vaughan, Ivan

'With a

Vincent,

Little

Help From

Woman'
Wonder,

30

21,

My

Wood, Charles

Vollmer, Jurgen 32

'Word, The'

Volume 3 (album) 219

'Words of Love' 107

Walls

115,

BFI/United

168, 186, 210

124

Rex

4 8t,

170

Artists:

Features:

43,

130, 131, 133, 143

'World Without Love'

2, 15, 37,

51,

38-39, 40,

52-53, 63, 73-74, 80,

8l, 83, 95, III, 115, 119, I2It,

122-123, I2 7- 140-41,
116

Yardbirds 90, 182, 183

129, 130

and Bridges (album)

'We Can Work

It

Webb, Bernard

116

Out'

Wedding Album, The

'What Goes On'

212

131,

146

157, 161,

166-7,

74>

no

87,

82,

206
33, 34, 35,

60, 67, 77, 84, 88-89, 9h, 93>

Yellow Submarine (film) 157, 164-5,

126, 145, 164,

'Yes

190-91

90

'When

'When

I'm Sixty-Four'

13, 14,

120-1, 124, 129,

169, 213

Yesterday

New Mary Jane'

207

and Today (album)

92, 146
173

Get Home' 98

You Are Here exhibition 210

'You Can't Catch Me' 24, 203


25, 150

Quoted

Lyrics

It Is' 71, 118

'Yesterday'

(television

documentary)
'What's the

79'

'Yellow Submarine' 139, 142

'Yer Blues' 181,

129, 130

What's Happening! The Beatles in

USA

Redferns: 26, 28-29, 32,

151, 152,
J

166, 169, 171, 172

'What You're Doing' 108

the

146,

194

158, 165, 169, 176, 185,

187, 195, 198-9, 200,

'Wait'

64-65,

BFI/Universal: 99, 108, 121b, 125

116

Vipers 46

207

16, 19, 20,

55, 57,

73, 79, 94, 100, 102, 104-105,

157, 168

Stevie 82, 215

Wonderwall (film)

32, 144,

48b, 49, 50,

113, 128, 132, 135, 137, 138,

Vinton, Bobby 81-2

Voorman, Klaus

23,

'Within You Without You'

214

80, 127, 127, 136, 177

Gene

Apple/Hulton Deutsch:

Friends' 156

21

and Mars (album)

Vietnam war

39, 59,

68-71, 72, 80, 86, 101

Vartan, Sylvie 84

Venus

Girl'

Youth 216

113

United States j6jf

Valli,

131

Do' 107

66

Pie' 181

Wild Life (album)

Know What

'Your Mother Should


'You're

Williams, Allan 30-1; 58

78, 94, 103, 126,

204

'You Really Got a Hold on Me' 69

Young, La Monte 172

159, 180, 201

United Artists 83-4

127,

The

see Beatles,

181

175,

Me Too Much' 118


Me Your Money'

'You Never Give

50

'Wild Honey

Up

(Look

'You'll

Don't

n
icro, 101,

165, 197

'You Won't See Me' 130,

2:

With the Lions (album)

Number)'

'White Christmas' 19

'Why

Life

Know My Name

the

Whittaker, Robert 146

Who

Two

1:

Virgins (album) 175, 210

Unfinished Music No.

Andy

'You

'You Like

204

'White Album'

Do Tkaf94,
94,

108, 109-10, 130

We Was Fab' 218


My Guitar Gently Weeps'

182-3, 182,

59, 73,

Unfinished Music No.

''Yofi Can't

In' 41

White, Alan 207

207

193,

Go

the 'Saints

Marching

215

Lennon-McCartney,
Me',

'Please Please

Dick James Music,

All other songs:

1963

Lennon-McCartney,

Northern Songs, 1963-9

20th-century Composers
Series Editor:

Norman

Lebrecht

20th-century Composers

is

a revolutionary series, presenting

comprehensive biographies of the great creative musicians of our


time; authoritative
personalities

reader

and

and engaging

texts

about these fascinating

their achievements that will appeal to the general

and musical

enthusiast.

Clear narrative histories of the composers, their art and their

world, are augmented by striking visual presentation and sup-

plemented by
Composers

essential reference material,

series a vital

A selection

of current and forthcoming

further information

is

titles

appears below;

obtainable from the publisher.

American Dreamers Copland and


Ives, Varese,

making the 20th-century

purchase for music-lovers of every kind.

Barber;

American Pioneers

Cowell, Cage, Partch; Bela Bartok,

The Beatles,

Broadway
Maxwell Da vies and
Birtwistle, Claude Debussy, Manuel de Falla, Gabriel Faure,
George Gershwin; Hindemith, Hartmann and Henze;

Alban Berg, Pierre Boulez, Benjamin


Berlin, Kern, Porter, Rodgers,

Italian

Modernists

Britten,

Sondheim;

Dallapiccola, Maderna,

Greats Bolden, Armstrong, Bechet,


Parker, Coltrane, Davis; Erich

Nono,

Berio;

Jazz

Ellington, Mingus, Young,

Korngold, Leos Jandcek,

Ligeti

and Kurtag, Bohuslav Martinu, Gustav Mahler, Olivier


Messiaen, Minimalists Young,

Riley, Reich, Glass;

Denisov, Gubaidulina, Shchedrin; Carl Nielsen,

New Russians

Polish

Renaissance Panufnik, Lutoslawski, Penderecki, Gorecki; Francis


Poulenc, Sergey Prokofiev,

Giacomo

Rachmaninov, Maurice Ravel,

Puccini,

Sergey

Erik Satie, Alfred Schnittke,

Arnold Schoenberg, Dmitry Shostakovich, Jean

Sibelius,

Karlheinz Stockhausen, Igor Stravinsky, Richard Strauss,

Karol Szymanowski, Ralph


Cilea,

Vaughan

Williams, Veristi Alfano,

Giordano, Leoncavallo, Mascagni, Zandonai; Kurt Weill,

Anton von Webern

ISBN 0-7148-3203-0

780714"832036

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