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Pattaya Daily News

22 August 2009 :: 23:08:27 pm 2357

All You Need is Love: The Beatles

This was written in something of a hurry (mostly by John Lennon) when the Beatles were offered the UK contribution to the worldwide-by-satellite broadcast Our World, which linked five continents and was seen by an estimated 400 million people – something of a technological innovation at the time.
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Rather than using one of their recent Sgt Pepper tracks, it was decided to offer up a completely new song, and since many viewers wouldn’t understand English, Lennon settled on an easily understandable universal theme for his anthemic chorus, ‘All You Need Is Love’. A relatively simple song by the Beatles standards, it encapsulated the soon to pass love and good vibes idiom of the 1967 hippie summer of love, but, good sentiment aside, doesn’t really stand up as much of a song beyond the chorus.

Recorded at Olympic and Abbey Road in the ten days leading up to the broadcast on the evening of Sunday 25th June, rather than miming to a worldwide audience, the group decided to hedge their bets and play ‘live’ to the pre-recorded backing tapes.

There was something of a party atmosphere at Abbey Road’s Studio One on the night of the broadcast (though producer George Martin recalls being somewhat stressed) and a number of the Beatles’ friends sat around the studio and sang along with the chorus, among them Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Marianne Faithfull, Jane Asher, Eric Clapton and Graham Nash. When the broadcast was successfully over, George Martin recalls saying, “Well, we’re obviously going to issue this record, so let’s work on it now.” Martin says he added an additional double-tracked Lennon vocal and did a little tinkering with the tape, but the resulting production was pretty much the same as the version broadcast, edited from around 6 minutes to 3’47. (This 7-inch version appeared on the 1967 US only Magical Mystery Tour album, while a different mix with an alternative Lennon vocal was included on the 1969 Yellow Submarine  movie soundtrack album.)

Aside from the Beatles own musical contribution (and that of a studio orchestra and the group’s assorted supporters) there were a number of other musical interludes in the song as broadcast to the world which, perhaps in keeping with the international status of the occasion, began with the French national anthem, ‘La Marseillaise’. Whether President de Gaulle and his subjects were pleased or insulted at this hi-jacking is unrecorded. During the lengthy fade-out there were a number of musical ad-libs including the Beatles own ‘She Loves You’, ‘Greensleeves’ (a traditional English melody which legend has it was composed by King Henry VIII for one of his six wives, Anne Boleyn*) and ‘In The Mood’, a big band classic by Glenn Miller from 1939. (See separate story.) This last piece caused something of a kerfuffle, and the Beatles were later forced to make an out of court settlement with the ‘aggrieved’ publishers. (One assumes said publishers were actually rubbing their hands in glee at getting a snatch of their copyright on a million-selling world wide hit.)

(*Even if Henry was serenading his new love with ‘Greensleeves’ – he died in 1547 and the melody was first noted in1580. Apparently quite the dab hand on the lute and harpsichord, perhaps Henry enjoyed entertaining his courtiers with his latest ‘number’. He composed numerous melodies including ‘Pastyme With Goode Company’ which were performed at court. While there’s every likelihood that Henry could knock off a good interpretation of ‘Greensleeves’ I think it more likely that the melody already existed and he possibly just added some new lyrics. There is also the possibility that the tune was written by a court musician at Henry’s bequest, and the dastardly man then claimed it as his own – our first historical example of the dreaded copyright theft!)

All You Need Is Love – The Beatles
Parlophone R 5620 (UK) / Capitol 5964 (USA)
Released 7th July 1967
Writers John Lennon & Paul McCartney
Producer George Martin
UK #1 19th July 1967 3 weeks USA #1 19th August 1967 1 week

Reporter : PDN staff   Photo : Internet   Category : Lifestyle

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