17 Beatles Great Hits Produced by George Martin During the 1960s

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The Beatles captured the hearts and ears of a generation with music that continues to resonate today. Here are 17 hits by The Beatles, produced by George Martin, whose contributions ranged far beyond the traditional producer role, from arranging to composing to playing instruments:

1. “Please Please Me” (1963)

When John Lennon and Paul McCartney first played “Please Please Me” for George Martin during their second EMI recording session on September 4th, 1962, the song was miles away from the uptempo tune that would become their first Number One. “At that stage ‘Please Please Me’ was a very dreary song,” Martin recalled to historian Mark Lewisohn. “It was like a Roy Orbison number, very slow, bluesy vocals. It was obvious to me that it badly needed pepping up.” He suggested they speed it up double-time, and suddenly they had a hit on their hands. “We were a bit embarrassed that he had found a better tempo than we had,” admitted McCartney in The Beatles Anthology.

2. “A Hard Day’s Night” (1964)

Song featured in the Beatles’ first film, with that title — taken from drummer Ringo’s response to a comment that he looked tired: “Yea, I’ve had a hard day’s night, you know.”

3. “Yesterday” (1965)

When Paul McCartney first completed the song he literally dreamed up, the rest of the band were at a loss for what to play on it. The somber tone and mournful lyrics didn’t really lend themselves to an effective drum pattern, jangly guitars or even vocal harmonies. Martin convinced McCartney to grab an acoustic guitar and just sing the song by himself, a first in Beatles history. He also suggested another Beatle first: a string quartet. At first the notion conjured up thoughts of syrupy Mantovani schmaltz, and the young man resisted, but Martin assured him that it could be done tastefully. The part was the first of many elegant arrangements the producer would create for their songs…(read more)

Source: vintage everyday



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