Recording "Happiness Is A Warm Gun"

Monday, September 23, 1968 • For The Beatles

Part of


"The Beatles" (aka the White Album) sessions

May 30 - Oct 15, 1968 • Songs recorded during this session appear on The Beatles (Mono)

Album Songs recorded during this session officially appear on the The Beatles (Mono) LP.
Timeline More from year 1968
Studio:
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road

Master album


Some songs from this session appear on:


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About

On this day, The Beatles started working on John Lennon’s “Happiness Is A Warm Gun“. They recorded 45 takes of it, during this 7 pm to 3 am session. Paul McCartney was on bass, Ringo Starr on drums, George Harrison on lead guitar and John Lennon played guitar and sang a guide vocal.

The recording tape captured a lot of discussions between The Beatles and the engineering team about how to play the difficult time signature changes or comparing the difficulty of some sections of the song with others.

It’s very similar to Bungalow Bill in that it’s a piss-take of all the people who really do think happiness is a warm gun. There’s a great vocal on it, good lyrics, and it’s a very interesting song because it changes tempo a lot, it’s quite a complex piece. It’s very Lennon.

Paul McCartney – from “Many Years From Now”, by Barry Miles, 1997

As George Martin was on holidays for most of September 1968, Chris Thomas produced this session. He remembered:

‘Happiness Is A Warm Gun’ went to a great many takes. We used to make jokes out of it. ‘Take 83!

Steve Thomas – From “The Complete Beatles Recording Sessions” by Mark Lewisohn

Work on “Happiness Is A Warm Gun” continued the day after.

Last updated on August 26, 2021

Songs recorded


1.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 1


2.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 2


3.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 3


4.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 4


5.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 5


6.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 6


7.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 7


8.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 8


9.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 9


10.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 10


11.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 11


12.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 12


13.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 13


14.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 14


15.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 15


16.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 16


17.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 17


18.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 18


19.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 19

Album Officially released on The Beatles (50th anniversary boxset)


20.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 20


21.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 21


22.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 22


23.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 23


24.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 24


25.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 25


26.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 26


27.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 27


28.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 28


29.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 29


30.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 30


31.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 31


32.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 32


33.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 33


34.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 34


35.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 35


36.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 36


37.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 37


38.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 38


39.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 39


40.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 40


41.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 41


42.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 42


43.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 43


44.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 44


45.

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 45

Staff

Musicians on Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Paul McCartney:
bass
Ringo Starr:
drums
John Lennon:
guitar, guide vocal
George Harrison:
lead guitar

Production staff

Chris Thomas:
Producer
Ken Scott:
Engineer
Mike Sheady:
Second Engineer

The Complete Beatles Recording Sessions • Mark Lewisohn

The definitive guide for every Beatles recording sessions from 1962 to 1970.

We owe a lot to Mark Lewisohn for the creation of those session pages, but you really have to buy this book to get all the details - the number of takes for each song, who contributed what, a description of the context and how each session went, various photographies... And an introductory interview with Paul McCartney!

The Beatles Bible

If we like to think, in all modesty, that the Paul McCartney Project is the best online ressource for everything Paul McCartney, The Beatles Bible is for sure the definitive online site focused on the Beatles. There are obviously some overlap in terms of content between the two sites, but also some major differences in terms of approach.

Have a look at https://www.beatlesbible.com/1968/09/23/recording-happiness-is-a-warm-gun/

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