Watch the first clip from The Beatles: Get Back
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The Beatles had a stellar year in 1962. After signing with their manager Brian Epstein, they removed their original drummer, Pete Best, from the band and replaced him with Ringo Starr. After that, they worked hard to secure their first number-one single. They endured a few failed attempts, but by 1963, they were on to something. However, it all came crashing down when they attempted to work with another British songwriter.
John Lennon and Paul McCartney were hard at work on their new single, From Me To You, in the summer of 1963 – but they were having trouble finishing it off.
Eventually, British star Kenny Lynch stepped in to help them while they were on a tour bus. Lynch, at the time, was a hugely successful singer-songwriter who had released such songs as Mountain of Love, Up on the Roof and would later go on to release the track Stand By Me.
Writer Roger Greenaway recalled the event: “John and Paul were sitting at the back of the coach and Kenny Lynch, who at this time fancied himself as a songwriter, sauntered up to the back of the coach and Kenny Lynch … decided he would help them write a song.”
The three songwriters got to work on From Me To You. But, before long, it became very obvious that they could not work well together. And Kenny blew up at the stars while they were working together.
Greenaway went on: “After a period of about half an hour had elapsed and nothing seemed to be coming from the back.”
Lynch was so reportedly filled with rage over the work the trio hadn’t produced. As a result, he began screaming at Lennon and McCartney.
Lynch yelled: “Well, that’s it. I am not going to write any more of that bl**dy rubbish with those idiots. They don’t know music from their backsides. That’s it! No more help from me!”
As Kenny stormed away from Lennon and McCartney on the coach, they continued working on the song. A short while later, on June 29, 1963, The Beatles’ track – From Me To You – reached number one in the UK, marking the band’s first number-one single.
Although the song was a runaway success, it hit many hurdles during its production.
Lennon later revealed the band were not completely happy with how the record was sounding during the writing process.
He said: “We nearly didn’t record it because we thought it was too bluesy at first.” At this point, the band were still working out their sound.
Eventually, the band’s producer, George Martin, stepped in to fix it. Lennon remembered: “When we’d finished it – and George Martin had scored it with harmonica – it was all right.”
Lennon also argued that he was to thank for the song’s composition, despite the fact it was credited to Lennon-McCartney.
He later said: “We were writing it in a car, I think. And I think the first line was mine. I mean I know it was mine. And then after that we took it from there. It was far bluesier than that when we wrote it. The notes — today you could rearrange it pretty funky.” (sic)
McCartney also opened up about the song’s versatility. Back in 1964 he said: “It could be done as an old ragtime tune — especially the middle eight — and so we’re not writing the tunes in any particular idiom.”
Looking to the future, he mused: “In five years’ time we may arrange the tunes differently. But we’ll probably write the same old rubbish!”
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