Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Get Ready, World

September 11, 1962

The Beatles return to EMIs Abbey Road Studio for the third time.  By now they are feeling less overawed and a little more confident in the recording process.  On the other hand, Ringo, who has only been in the band about a month, is devastated to find that session drummer Andy White is in attendance.  He has to be wondering, "Uh-oh.  Did I make a big mistake here""

They start recording at 5:00 pm London time and finish up at 6:45, something less than two hours.  (For recording artists today, I doubt if they'd have the guitars plugged in by then.)  First, the band makes 10 takes of the McCartney song "P.S. I Love You" with White on the skins.  Then, they lay down 18 more takes of  "Love Me Do".  (Ringo is relegated to maracas.)

Also, they make a version of "Please, Please Me", which is still imagined as a slow ponderous number, ala Roy Orbison.  Today is the day that they first get the idea that it may work as a more upbeat song.  John , who wrote the song as a kid in his bedroom at Menlove Park, said in a 1963 interview:  "Our recording manager (George Martin) thought our arrangement was fussy, so we tried to make it simpler. We were getting tired though, and just couldn't seem to get it right. In the following weeks we went over it again and again. We changed the tempo a little, we altered the words slightly, and we went over the idea of featuring the harmonica just as we'd done on 'Love Me Do.'

"Love Me Do" and "P.S. I Love You" are mixed and mastered immediately after the session and sent to the pressing plant for manufacturing.  In the early versions of this record, the version of LMD with Ringo on drums is used, so I recon Andy White wasn't THAT big an improvement over the little amateur drummer from Liddypool.

On the 14th, Operation Big Beat V at the Tower Ballroom organized by Sam Leach, gives the punters five and a half hours of rock and roll for one price, headlined by the Beatles.  Brian Epstein is making sure they have something to do almost everyday.  More than half of  those are appearances at the Cavern Club.

A major event occurring sometime around this day, John Lennon and George Harrison obtain Gibson J-160e guitars from Rushworth's Music Store, which is a few doors down from Epstein's North End Music Store.. (Mersey Beat Magazine has this presentation taking place on September 10th.  This is the same store where I got my guitar strap in 1998!)  These guitars will soon become essential to the developing sound of the band.

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