1963: With The Beatles

Parlophone/November 22, 1963. PMC 1206 (mono) PCS 3045 (stereo)
Produced by George Martin. 
All songs composed by Paul McCartney and John Lennon, unless otherwise noted.
Side 1:
It Won't Be Long 
All I've Got To Do 
All My Loving 
Don't Bother Me (George Harrison) 
Little Child 
Till There Was You (Meredith Willson) 
Please Mr. Postman (Brian Holland/Robert Bateman/Berry Gordy) 
Side 2:
Roll Over Beethoven (Chuch Berry) 
Hold Me Tight 
You Really Got A Hold On Me (William Robinson) 
I Wanna Be Your Man 
Devil In Her Heart (Richard B. Drapkin) 
Not A Second Time 
Money (That's What I Want) (Berry Gordy/Janie Bradford)

Another LP where half of the songs are covers of american tunes. Another big success in Great Britain, and Europe was also beginning to notice the teen idols. George Harrison makes his debut as composer of one of the songs. 

The CD was released in mono only in 1987.

Liner Notes:

Fourteen freshly recorded titles including many sure-fire stage-show favourites are featured on the two generously filled sides of this record. The Beatles have repeated the successful formula which made their first 'Please Please Me' LP into the fastest-selling album of 1963. Again they have set eight of their own original compositions along side a batch of 'personal choice' pieces selected from the recorded repertoires of the American R. & B. artists they admire most.

The first half of the session gets away to a rip-roarin' start with John's powerful treatment of IT WON'T BE LONG NOW. Two more Lennon/McCartney compositions follow with these two remarkably talented tunesmiths handling their own lyrics on ALL I'VE GOT TO DO and ALL MY LOVING. On the first slower number John takes the vocal lead with Paul supplying the harmony. on ALL MY LOVING Paul stands in the vocal spotlight with John and George chanting in the background. Listen to George's superb, slightly Country and Western guitar solo, an intriguing feature of ALL MY LOVING.

DON'T BOTHER ME marks the disc debut of George Harrison as a composer. It is a fairly fast number with a haunting theme tune. Behind George's double-tracked voice the rest of the fabulous foursome create some unusual instrumental effects. Paul beats out a lean, hollow-boned rhythm from the claves, John uses a tambourine and Ringo hits out a loose-skinned Arabian bongo (don't ask me where he picked that up!) to pound out the on-beat percussive drive.

On a fair number of previous recordings by The Beatles producer George Martin has joined the group to add suitable piano sounds to their instrumental arrangements. His keyboard contributions come a little later in this new programme but on LITTLE CHILD it is Paul McCartney who plays piano, John and Paul join forces for the vocal on this rocker and, whilst Paul was over-dubbing the piano bits, John was standing beside another microphone adding in some neatly trimmed mouth-organ phrases.

Those who considered Paul's interpretation of A taste of honey to be a stand-out attraction of The Beatles' first LP will be more than pleased to hear him assume the role of romantic balladeer again on TILL THERE WAS YOU, the near-standard hit from the show 'The Music Man'.

Ringo plays the Bongos behind Paul's solo performance, George and John switch to acoustic guitars for this track only Paul's pulsating bass uses electricity.

If you have read a great deal in the musical press about Merseyside's beat basement, The Cavern, you might imagine that the cellar stompers of Liverpool would demand and all-up-tempo programme. Curiously Paul's persuasive handling of TILL THERE WAS YOU used to go down extremely well at the club long before the Love me do days when The Beatles were frequent bill-toppers at this now-famous venue.

The first half closes with another number which dates back to The Beatles' Cavern Club period. Once an American chart-topper for a recording group called The Marvelettes, PLEASE MR. POSTMAN features a double-tracked John Lennon with George and Paul in vocal support.

Chuck Berry's ROLL OVER BEETHOVEN has been one of the most requested items at recent concert performances by The Beatles. George duets with himself on this one; the boys add to the atmosphere af active excitement by their handclapping.

Paul issues forth with the invitation HOLD ME TIGHT on the fairly brisk second track of Side Two. More handclapping and energetic vocal support from John and George.

The boys have an immense admiration for America's rhythmic group The Miracles, to whom they pay tribute via their interpretation of YOU REALLY GOT A HOLD ON M E. John and George tackle the wild, relentless vocal with Paul joining them for the chorus lines. Incidentally that IS George Martin on the piano this time!

Observing the tremendous audience response that Ringo has been getting whenever he sings Boys, John and Paul put their heads together to pen a special new number for their fierce-voiced drumming man. The result is a real raver entitled I WANNA BE YOUR MAN. The Hammond organ in the background is played by John Lennon.

Though they are lesser known on our side of the Atlantic than The Crystals or the Shirelles, the American all-girl group The Donays have always commanded plenty of professional respect from The Beatles. Therefore they switched around the lyrics of DEVIL IN HER HEART and handed this medium-paced beat offering to George Harrison. John and Paul provide the harmony with Ringo using his maraccas.

The final Lennon/McCartney composition of this session features a double-tracked John Lennon singing NOT A SECOND TIME. George Martin's piano work is featured on this number and again upon the programme's closing track MONEY. Paul describes MONEY as 'a really big screamer' and he recalls the numerous Cavern Club occasions when this item brought forth the same type of overwhelming response given to Twist and Shout. Much recorded by American blues merchants, MONEY has John shouting the raw lyrics with tremendous force and feeling whilst George and Paul supply the answers.

MONEY makes a completely worthy climax to this knock-out programme. Hope it doesn't leave you too breathless to flip back to Side One for a repeat-play session WITH THE BEATLES.

TONY BARROW
 

It Won't Be Long

basic recording- 30 Jul 1963
additional recording- 30 Jul 1963
master tape- twintrack 2d generation

mono mixed: 21 Aug 1963. edited
stereo mixed: stereo 29 Oct 1963. edited. 

The edit seems to be the last line; the word "belong" sounds shorter in mono as if it is done differently. On the other hand, a bootleg called "Garage Tapes" has an unidentified take where about only about the first half the song seems to match the finished version.

All I've Got To Do

basic recording- 11 Sep 1963
additional recording- 11 Sep 1963
master tape- twintrack 2d generation

mono mixed: 30 Sep 1963.
stereo mixed: stereo 29 Oct 1963.

All My Loving 

basic recording- 30 Jul 1963
additional recording- 30 Jul 1963
master tape- twintrack 2d generation

mono mixed: 21 Aug 1963. edited
stereo mixed: stereo 29 Oct 1963. edited. 

In Germany, there are untrimmed stereo and mono versions which add a "count-in" intro with 5 taps on a hi-hat, left, and then an intake of breath, right (stereo german "With The Beatles" LP and mono german single). The untrimmed mono is probably combined from the stereo.

The CD stereo remix ("1962-1966" aka "The red album" double CD set) has the vocal track centered, leaving nothing far right.

Don't Bother Me

basic recording- 12 Sep 1963
additional recording- 12 Sep 1963
master tape- twintrack 2d generation

mono mixed: 30 Sep 1963.
stereo mixed: stereo 29 Oct 1963.

There is a Canadian Meet The Beatles vinyl LP in stereo (issued around 1976), which has an interesting variation: George sings an extra "don't" in the line "when she's come home, until that day, DON'T, don't come around, leave me alone". It sounds completely out of place.

Little Child

basic recording- 12 Sep 1963
additional recording- 12 Sep 1963, 3 Oct 1963
master tape- twintrack 4th generation

mono mixed: 23 Oct 1963.
stereo mixed: stereo 29 Oct 1963.

The main harmonica and piano are separate overdubs, a total 3 generations. The harmonica solo, a "4th track" (generation) on the song, is edited in to hold the rest of the song to "only" 3 generations. The instrumental track is saturated, as can be heard in stereo. Something else done Oct 3, is only in stereo according to Lewisohn's reporting, and it seems to be the additional vocals heard at the very end.

Till There Was You

basic recording- 30 Jul 1963
additional recording- none
master tape- twintrack

mono mixed: 21 Aug 1963. edited
stereo mixed: stereo 29 Oct 1963. edited

Please Mr. Postman

basic recording- 30 Jul 1963
additional recording- 30 Jul 1963
master tape- twintrack 2d generation

mono mixed: 21 Aug 1963. edited
stereo mixed: stereo 29 Oct 1963. edited

Roll Over Beethoven

basic recording- 30 Jul 1963
additional recording- 30 Jul 1963
master tape- twintrack 2d generation

mono mixed: 23 Aug 1963. edited
stereo mixed: stereo 29 Oct 1963. edited. 

Lewisohn reports two takes are edited together, and from evidence of bootlegged tapes, the two are both complete takes of a 2d generation overdub onto the same earlier take. In stereo, "you you you" at the end has a harmony vocal missing in mono.

Hold Me Tight

basic recording- 12 Sep 1963
additional recording- 12 Sep 1963
master tape- twintrack 2d generation

mono mixed: 30 Sep 1963.
stereo mixed: stereo 29 Oct 1963.

You Really Got A Hold On Me

basic recording- 18 Jul 1963
additional recording- 18 Jul 1963
master tape- twintrack 2d generation
mono mixed: 21 Aug 1963
stereo mixed: 29 Oct 1963

In mono, the instrumental track is mixed relatively quiet until the line "oh ho ho you treat me badly", when it comes up to a more normal level; in stereo it starts at normal level and remains.

I Wanna Be Your Man

basic recording- 12 Sep 1963
additional recording- 30 Sep, 3,23 Oct 1963
master tape- twintrack 4th generation

mono mixed: 23 Aug 1963. edited
stereo mixed: stereo 29 Oct 1963. edited

Devil In Her Heart

basic recording- 18 Jul 1963
additional recording- 18 Jul 1963
master tape- twintrack 2d generation

mono mixed: 21 Aug 1963. edited
stereo mixed: stereo 29 Oct 1963. edited

Not A Second Time

basic recording- 11 Sep 1963
additional recording- 11 Sep 1963
master tape- twintrack 2d generation

mono mixed: 30 Sep 1963.
stereo mixed: stereo 29 Oct 1963.

Money (That's What I Want)

basic recording- 18 Jul 1963
additional recording- 18 Jul, 30 Sep 1963
master tape- twintrack 2d(?) generation

mono mixed: 21 Aug 1963. edited
stereo mixed: stereo 30 Oct 1963. edited

This recording is not well described by Lewisohn, but see his Chronicle for the July 18 session sheet and his Recording Sessions for the July 30 session sheet. The mono and stereo each have sound not heard in the other, indicating two final-generation tapes made from a common earlier generation. The piano intro appears to be the same on both mixes, but with tapping in mono. The other differences are the raspy guitar sound in mono and the more prominent piano sound throughout in stereo.

Lewisohn reports that the mono mix was made by editing take 6 (called "edit (piano)" on the session sheet) and take 7 (called "complete"), both July 18, while the stereo mix was made from take 7 possibly including unnumbered piano overdubs made Sept 30. That the tapping intro is take 6, used only in mono, and that the louder piano all the way through is the Sept 30 work used only in stereo, makes sense but does not explain all. How is the guitar louder in mono? Both takes 6 and 7 are marked "track 2", i.e. second generation. It could be the second generation of take 6 added the tapping; we don't know what was added for take 7. (No use of the July 30 session's "track 3" is reported, when more piano intro was recorded. Even use of the Sept 30 overdubs is implied but not actually stated.)

The most difficult question is how the stereo happens to have the vocal and handclap track mixed center, resulting in a true stereo mix without the hole in the center. The only other twin-track recording with anything mixed equally into both channels is the harmonica overdubs in From Me to You, done sound-on-sound as an overdub. Lewisohn says Money is two separate mono mixes on two tapes. Other reports in his book and George Martin's indicate they had no way to synchronize two tapes reliably for more than few seconds at a time until 1967, making it seem incredible that Money could be two tapes, and yet, why did it take 3 hours to mix this one song to stereo on Oct 30, if it was just a twintrack source? Was it perhaps synchronized in short sections that were then edited together?



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