Beatle Lessons of the With The Beatles Period

1963 February 11 - September 12
by Ken Westover
rev: 2012May23

This page is a miniscule look at material typically found in the book Songs of The Beatles' With The Beatles Period.

Period Overview

This Period marks the growth of Beatlemania.

The Period starts after recording the last song for their first LP, Please Please Me, extending through the last session for their second LP, With The Beatles.

Three records containing 18 songs were released from this Period. (One song was recorded but went unreleased.) The first two records were hit singles. These were followed by The Beatles' second LP, With The Beatles, which was also a #1 hit.

With The Beatles Period Releases

1963 Apr 11
1963 Aug 23
  With The Beatles (UKLP-2)
1963 Nov 22
Song Side
From Me To You A
Thank You Girl B
Song Side
She Loves You A
I'll Get You B
SongLP Side-CutCD Track
It Won't Be Long 1-11
All I've Got To Do 1-22
All My Loving 1-33
Don't Bother Me 1-44
Little Child 1-55
Till There Was You 1-66
Please Mr. Postman 1-77
Roll Over Beethoven 2-18
Hold Me Tight 2-29
You Really Got A Hold On Me 2-310
I Wanna Be Your Man 2-411
Devil In Her Heart 2-512
Not A Second Time 2-613
Money (That's What I Want) 2-714

Record Release Chronology

"Brian and I worked out a grand plan of campaign. A single would be released every three months and an album every six." - George Martin, producer of the Beatles.

After the success of the Please Please Me LP (it hit #1 on the UK charts), two singles were needed before the next LP was due.

UK45-3: 'From Me To You'/ 'Thank You Girl'

Recorded: 1963 March 05,13
Released: 1963 April 11

'Thank You Girl' was written first and was expected to be the next A-side. But then John & Paul wrote 'From Me To You' on their tour bus and liked it better. Just to make sure, they played both songs for tour headliner Helen Shapiro to see which she preferred. She confirmed their hunch, and 'From Me To You' became their next A-side.

Both songs have John playing harmonica - one of the Beatles first musical "hooks". Always looking to move on, the band was now ready for something new. As a result, the harmonica was not featured as prominently as on their first record, 'Love Me Do'.

The new hook was vocal, a falsetto "ooo" the Beatles took from The Isley Brothers (as featured in The Isley's song 'Twist And Shout'). They worked it into 'From Me To You', but really perfected it in their next single, 'She Loves You'.

From Me To You

by Lennon & McCartney

Lead vocal: duet by John & Paul

One source of lyric inspiration for John and Paul was newspapers (like the four thousand holes in 'A Day In The Life' and 'Happiness Is A Warm Gun'.

One of the major music newspapers was New Musical Express, which The Beatles read for reviews and chart rankings. The NME had a section called "From You To Us" where reader's letters were printed. John and Paul turned it around to write 'From Me To You'. They were riding on a tour bus at the time, and demoed the song to headliner Helen Shapiro at the Granada Cinema in Shrewsbury.

Musically, the solo in interesting in that the bass copies the lead guitar. This is an early example of Paul taking the bass in a more melodic direction than his peers.

Thank You Girl

by Lennon & McCartney

Lead vocal: another duet by John & Paul

Co-written by John & Paul, but neither of them cared much for it. They demoed the song for Helen Shapiro at the same time as 'From Me To You', asking which she liked better. They all agreed 'From Me To You' was better.

UK45-4: 'She Loves You'/ 'I'll Get You'

Recorded: 1963 July 01 (both sides recorded in one day)
Released: 1963 August 23

She Loves You

by Lennon & McCartney

Lead vocal: John and Paul duet

'She Loves You' shows the Beatles mastering a hook they lifted from 'Twist And Shout' (falsetto 'ooo's), plus one they molded one of their own: 'yeah, yeah, yeah'.

The use of "yeah" was not original with the Beatles. A number of cover songs on their first album (Please Please Me) used the word. But John & Paul brought it to the front and added repetition. The 'yeah, yeah, yeah' became their trademark, something every successful band needs - a unique, instantly recognizable hook.

I'll Get You

by Lennon & McCartney

Lead vocal: John and Paul duet

Co-written by John and Paul, lyrics influenced slightly by Lewis Carroll (Alice Through The Looking Glass), and a chord from 'All My Trials' by Joan Baez.

UKLP-2: With The Beatles

Recorded: 1963 July 18 - October 23 (nine recording sessions total)
Released: 1963 November 22

Producer George Martin regarded With The Beatles to be a collection of songs not quite good enough to be singles. That may be true if the standard of measure is Beatle music. But by any other measure, the songs were pretty darn good.

Recording started 1963 July 18. Two sessions were used to record eight songs. Four more sessions filled out the 14 songs needed for the LP. In the middle of these LP sessions, the Beatles recorded both sides of another single (to be released just after the LP).

With The Beatles Recording: Chronological
SongOriginal byCover
You Really Got A Hold On Me  cover
Money (That's What I Want)  cover
Devil In Her Heart  cover
Till There Was You  cover
Please Mr. Postman  cover
It Won't Be Long L&M 
Roll Over Beethoven  cover
All My Loving L&M 
I Wanna Be Your Man L&M 
Little Child L&M 
All I've Got To Do L&M 
Not A Second Time L&M 
Don't Bother Me Harrison 
Hold Me Tight L&M 

The Beatles recorded this album during breaks in tours. The first batch of songs were all cover songs, buying Lennon & McCartney (and George Harrison) some time to write more songs of their own. With The Beatles had six covers and eight originals (seven Lennon & McCartney, one Harrison). This was the same number of originals and covers as their first LP

George Martin was in complete control of the contents of this album. He picked the songs, oversaw the editing and mixing, and determined the order the songs appeared on each side (the "running order").

Martin still featured the Beatles vocals. The first LP had multiple voices singing on every song. This time, Martin let each Beatle have an entire song to himself, although double-tracking was used to smooth the transition.

Song Details

With The Beatles LP Contents
Song Side-Cut Composer Vocal
Side 1
It Won't Be Long 1-1 L&MJohn with Paul and George
All I've Got To Do 1-2 L&MJohn with Paul and George
All My Loving 1-3 L&MPaul (John & George backing)
Don't Bother Me 1-4 George HarrisonGeorge
Little Child 1-5 L&M John & Paul
Till There Was You 1-6 coverPaul (solo)
Please Mr. Postman 1-7 coverJohn (Paul & George backing)
Side 2
Roll Over Beethoven 2-1 coverGeorge (solo)
Hold Me Tight 2-2 L&MPaul (John & George backing)
You Really Got A Hold On Me 2-3 coverJohn & George (Paul backing)
I Wanna Be Your Man 2-4 L&MRingo (John & Paul backing)
Devil In Her Heart 2-5 coverGeorge (John & Paul backing)
Not A Second Time 2-6 L&MJohn solo
Money (That's What I Want) 2-7 coverJohn (Paul & George backing)

Side One

It Won't Be Long

by Lennon & McCartney

Lead vocal: John.

John claimed credit for this song. Paul remembers it as John's idea, but co-written. The song featured continued use of the "yeah" hook (55) and homonyms (be long = belong).

All I've Got To Do

by Lennon & McCartney

Lead vocal: John.

Written soley by John. Notice continued use of the "yeah" hook. John apparently liked it (the "yeah" hook).

All My Loving

by Lennon & McCartney

Lead vocal: Paul.

Not released as a single in the UK but was the title song on an EP. Won a Novello Award for "Second Most Outstanding Song" of 1963.

Not released in the US, but copies from Canada pushed it to #31 on US chart.

Don't Bother Me

by George Harrison

Lead vocal: George.

George sings solo (double-tracked) on his first solo composition. It was inspired by a friend who kept pestering George to start writing his own songs. George wrote it while he was sick.

Little Child

by Lennon & McCartney

Lead vocal: duet by John & Paul)

Written by John & Paul for Ringo ("sad and lonely"), but John & Paul wound up singing it. Features a harmonica solo by John.

Till There Was You

by Meredith Willson

Lead vocal: Paul, double-tracked

Solo vocal by Paul, who double-tracks himself. The song is from the play, later a movie, The Music Man. Paul sang another soundtrack number on The Beatles' first album, 'A Taste Of Honey', from a play of the same name. He did it for the girls (who loved it).

Please Mr. Postman

by William Garrett, Georgia Dobbins, Robert Bateman, Brian Holland, and Freddie Gorman

Lead vocal: John, double-tracked

This was a Motown song recorded by The Marvellettes that hit #1 in the US. By the way, in Beatle books you may see mention of Tamla-Motown. This was the name of the record label Motown used in the UK.

Side Two

Roll Over Beethoven

by Chuck Berry

Solo vocal: George, double-tracked.

Written and recorded by Chuck Berry 7 years earlier. His record peaked at #29 in the US. (By the way, Beethoven is pronounced BAY-toe-vahn.)

The Beatles' cover version was not released as a single in the UK. In the US it was released as the A-side of a single where it peaked at #30.

This song was one of six recorded in one 9.5-hour session on 63Jul30. There were 5 takes of the basic track plus 2 takes of overdub.

Anomalies in 'Roll Over Beethoven'
CD Time Remarks
0:00-0:10 Messed up guitar intro. Listen to Berry's original, and then this one
1:28 George's "ooooo" seems to be cut in the middle. Either an edit, or he stopped and someone else picked up the sound.
2:08 On Mono CD, the "sss" sound makes an odd stereophonic sound, as if a problem in transfer of the master to CD
2:41 Final chord is very obviously edited on.

Hold Me Tight

by Lennon & McCartney

Lead vocal: Paul.

Written mostly by Paul, but written together with John.

The Beatles recorded this song seven months earlier for their first album, Please Please Me, but in the end decided not to use it. It was re-made for With The Beatles. There were nine takes, two of which were edited together.

John called it "a pretty poor song". Paul called it "A failed attempt at a single" and "album filler".

Anomalies in 'Hold Me Tight'
CD Time Remarks
Throughout Squeaky bass pedal on Ringo's kit, best heard at 0:59-1:12, 1:39-1:50, (use left channel of stereo if you have it)
0:03 and 1:12,
John sings " ... right, so", and yet Paul sings " ... right, now" (comes out as "right, sow") although at 1:52 there also seems to be an edit through this piece as well!
0:38 Phrasing of "To--night" and "Tonight" varies between singers
1:27 John and George's echo of "hold" is disasterous, sounds like George scooped into John's note.
2:00 John comes in late with backing vocal, and there's some faint speech
2:21 Sudden change in volume on right channel of stereo only.

You Really Got A Hold On Me

by William "Smokey" Robinson

Lead vocal: John & George, with Paul backing. George Martin on piano.

This song was recorded by Smokey Robinson And The Miracles eight months earlier. It peaked at #8 in the US. This is one of three Motown songs on this LP.

Anomalies in 'You Really Got A Hold On Me'
CD Time Remarks
0:14 Edit to a different take as vocals come in ... hi hat sound changes here.
0:25-0:26 Switches back to original take
1:38 Edit as guitar playing minor part comes in

I Wanna Be Your Man

by Lennon & McCartney

Lead vocal: Ringo.

Co-written, based on Paul's idea, for Ringo to replace 'Boys'. Hammond organ played by George Martin (not John Lennon)

John and Paul wrote this song (finished it, actually) in front of Mick Jagger and Keith Richards to give to The Rolling Stones to record. The Stones did, and with it had their first hit record - but not until With The Beatles came out with 'I Wanna Be Your Man' on it.

The Beatles recorded it the day after finishing the song for the Stones. Ringo was given this as his lead-vocal piece on the LP.

Anomalies in 'I Wanna Be your Man'
CD Time Remarks
1:02-1:16 Solo taken from live take, and has rest of group in background. Also some talking evident on end of solo (right channel, in stereo).
Drumming sound changes (esp ride cymbal)
1:30Random "ooh" after "no other can"
1:36Ringo's bass pedal squeaks here
1:55Paul barks twice (actually, sounds like "Woop!")

Devil In Her Heart

by Richard B. Drapkin

Lead vocal: George. Backing vocals: John and Paul. Georges second lead vocal on Side 2.

Recorded by The Donays, it was not a hit in the US (did not break into the top 20. This is an example of how the Beatles discovered new songs for their live performances. Said George:

George Harrison: "Brian had had a policy at NEMS of buying at least one copy of every record that was released. If it sold, he'd order another one, or five or whatever. Consequently he had records that weren't hits in Britain, weren't even hits in America.

"Before going to a gig we'd meet in the record store, after it had shut, and we'd search the racks like ferrets to see what new ones were there. That's where we found artists like Arthur Alexander and Ritchie Barrett ('Some Other Guy' was a great song), and records like James Ray's 'If You Gotta Make A Fool Of Somebody'. These were songs which we used to perform in the clubs in the early days, and which many British bands later started recording.

"'Devil In Her Heart' and Barrett Strong's 'Money' were records that we'd picked up and played in the shop and thought were interesting."

Anomalies in 'Devil In Her Heart'
CD Time Remarks
0:25Somebody in backing vocal enters at wrong note and quickly corrects
2:04False start in guitar figure

Not A Second Time

by Lennon & McCartney

Solo vocal: John, double-tracked (no backing vocals)

Written by John alone, this is John's showcase vocal on the LP. This song received recognition in the London Times and moved Lennon & McCartney from pop group members to acclaimed composers.

Anomalies in 'Not A Second Time'
CD Time Remarks
0:44-0:45Shouts in background (mono, also stereo, right channel)
1:05Possible edit immediately after Ringo's fill
1:49Ringo's bass pedal -- guess what -- squeaks.
1:53Edit just as John starts "time"
2:00John blows the double tracking by forgetting what he sang the first time round. The two parts don't connect properly

Money (That's What I Want)

by Berry Gordy, Jr. and Janie Bradford (1959)

Lead vocal: John. Backing vocals: Paul & George.

Another Motown cover song. The original peaked at #23 in the US.

The sentiment came true. Two albums later, the Beatles chose the title Beatles For Sale.

Anomalies in 'Money (That's What I Want)'
CD Time Remarks
0:00-0:02In addition to the drum sticks, there is a soft sweeping sound, sounds a little like hi-hats, but a little too far off mic to be intentional
0:06Lead "Crunchy" guitar edited in mid strum (mono only)
0:15Soft thump as the guitar portion ends. On the mono CD this thump is quite clearly stereophonic!
0:18Double tracking goes strange on "free"
1:31Long scream, way off microphone.
1:37Double tracking on vocals comes back in, sounding much different. Possibly re-done for the CD mix?
2:14, 2:27Stereo only, as mono makes it hard to hear, George Martin plays wrong piano chords here (right channel)
2:38John hits a high note and his voice croaks badly


Anomalies were copied from: (moved from on 2009Jan05). These are just a sample to illustrate this source. Anomalies for other songs may be found at the pootle site.

For more details about the With The Beatles LP, its history and songs, visit the Wikipedia With The Beatles web page.