Beatles 50th Blog

The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today: October 24, 1965 (Sunday)

Studio Two, EMI Studios, London

Though stacked with potential, Paul's new song "I'm Looking Through You", wasn't easy to realize on tape. The Beatles spent the first half of this nine-hour session, 2:30-7:00 pm, recording one take of the song's rhythm track and overdubbing onto this, then spent the second half, until 11:00 pm, adding vocals. By the end of the night they had what would recognize as a classy recording - most, that is, but not the Beatles, who were to tape a re-make on November 6th and a second re-make on the 10th-11th.

Source: The Beatles Complete Chronicle - Mark Lewisohn

The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today: October 23, 1965 (Saturday)

On this date, 50 years ago, people in US were listening to Yesterday by The Beatles.

The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today: October 22, 1965 (Friday)

Studio Two, EMI Studios, London

The day began with a 10:30-11:30 morning session - probably without the Beatles in attendance - during which George Martin filled the hole in the middle of the otherwise complete "In My Life" with a beautiful baroque-style piano solo. To achieve the desired texture he played the piece at half-speed for playback at double-speed.

The Beatles were certainly around for one continous 2:30-11:30 pm session which saw them start fresh with a remake of "Nowhere Man" and conclude the recording in only three more takes.

The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today: October 21, 1965 (Thursday)

Studio Two, EMI Studios, London

"This Bird Has Flown", now "Norwegian Wood (This Bird Has Flown), was re-made from start to finish during the afternoon, 2:30-7:00 pm, in just three more takes. Without breaking for dinner, the Beatles then began to tackle John's "Nowhere Man". Two takes were attempted but the recording was incomplete when the session concluded at midnight, a re-make commenced the following evening.

Source: The Complete Beatles Chronicle - Mark Lewisohn


The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today: October 20, 1965 (Wednesday)

Studio Two, EMI Studios, London

The song which shared with "Day Tripper" the A-Side of the first single, "We Can Work It Out", was begun and virtually completed (but for a little overdubbing on October 29th) during two Abbey Road sessions this day, 2:30-6:30 and 7:00-11:45 pm. Once again, it displayed Lennon-McCartney's absolute mastery of the two-minute pop song and is another example of typically 1965 Beatles fare, excellent musicship allied with a new lyrical direction.

The basic track was captured in just two takes, onto which innumerable overdubs were applied, including the song's distinctive harmonium part played by John.

Source: The Complete Beatles Chronicle - Mark Lewisohn


The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today: October 19, 1965 (Tuesday)

The Beatles had recorded messages for their fan club in 1963 and 1964, however, it took them two attempts to complete the 1965 recording, the first of which was made on this day.

The recording took place at Marquee Studio in London. Situated at 10 Richmond Mews, the studio was affiliated to the Marquee Club; the building had originally been a warehouse, but was eventually converted to apartments.

The Beatles' press officer Tony Barrow led the recording, as he had done in previous years. The group worked from his script, though with various ad-libbed exchanges thrown in. Towards the end of the session they gathered around a piano to sing various improvised lines.

The session was not a success, with The Beatles evidently struggling to find humour in Barrow's script. George Harrison was not present, so the other Beatles attempted to impersonate him while reciting his lines.

John Lennon was openly disdainful of the prepared material, but none of the group was able, despite Paul McCartney's best efforts, to come together and produce anything suitably amusing. Ringo Starr was largely silent, aside from the closing singalong.

At least 26 minutes of material was recorded, although none was judged suitable for release. However, Barrow gave part of the transcript to The Beatles Book Monthly, which reproduced it in their December 1965 issue. He also included a short section of the recording in Sound Of The Stars, a promotional flexi-disc for Disc And Music Echo he produced in spring 1966.

The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today: October 18, 1965 (Monday)

Studio Two, EMI Studios, London

"If I Needed Someone" was the first priorty of this afternoon session, from 2:30 to 5:45, George's lead vocal, John and Paul's backing vocal and Ringo's tambourine being overdubbed onto the previous night's take one rhythm track.

The remainder of the afternoon was spent taping another marvellous new John Lennon song, the autobiographical "In My Life". The "best" was take three, completed but for a gap left in the middle-eight section which was plugged with an imaginative overdub on October 22nd.



Source: The Complete Beatles Chronicle - Mark Lewisohn

The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today: October 17, 1965 (Sunday)

Top #5 songs in the USA

  • The Beatles - Yesterday
  • The McCoys - Hang on Sloopy
  • Barry McGuire - Eye of Destruction
  • The Toys - A Lover's Concerto
  • Roy Head - Treat her Right

Top #5 songs in the UK

  • Ken Dodd - Tears
  • Andy Williams - Almost There
  • Manfred Mann - If You Gotta Go Go Now
  • Barry McGuire - Eve of Destruction
  • The Walker Brothers - Make It Easy On Yourself
The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today: October 16, 1965 (Saturday)

Studio Two, EMI Studios, London

Interveiwed in 1966, John and Paul admitted that "Day Tripper" was a "Forced" composition, written under the pressure of having to come up with a single. Well, other composers would have been proud to have come up with a song like this. It formed one of the two A-sides of the Beatles next single, issued on the same day as Rubber Soul, Friday, December 3rd, yet independently of that album.

The group worked from 2:30 to 7:00 pm rehearsing and recording the rhythm track, with only the final take, the third, making it through to the end. They began the 7:00-12:00 pm session overdubbing the vocals onto this, John and Paul sharing lead and backing roles. Once again, the Beatles started and completed a classy, influential recording within a matter of hours.

With the clock heading towards midnight, the group then recorded one take of a basic rhythm track for George's new composition "If I Needed Someone", leaving vocals and additional instruments to be overdubbed the next day.

Source: The Complete Beatles Chronicle - Mark Lewisohn


The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today: October 15, 1965 (Friday)
The #1 song in the US on October 15, 1965