Recording "Here Comes The Sun", "Something"

Wednesday, July 16, 1969 • For The Beatles

Part of


"Abbey Road" sessions

Feb 22 - Aug 25, 1969 • Songs recorded during this session appear on Abbey Road

Album Songs recorded during this session officially appear on the Abbey Road LP.
Studio:
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road
Studio:
EMI Studios, Studio Three, Abbey Road

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On this day, The Beatles recorded overdubs for the two songs from George Harrison to be released on the “Abbey Road” album, “Here Comes The Sun” and “Something“.


The basic track of “Here Comes The Sun” was recorded on July 7, and the first overdubs were added on July 8. On this day, more overdubs were added onto take 15.

From 2:30 pm to 7 pm in Studio Three, George, Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr added handclaps (on track eight). George also recorded a harmonium track (on track five), which would later be erased.

Here Comes The Sun” would receive more overdubs on August 6 and August 11.


From 7 pm to 12:30 am, The Beatles moved to Studio Two, to work on “Something” and add overdubs onto take 36 (discarding the tape reduction named take 37 done on July 11).

George re-recorded his lead vocals, replacing the ones recorded on July 11.

George was once again very nervous when it came time to do the vocal. No matter what we did to create a vibe – turning the lights down low, lighting incense – he just couldn’t get comfortable. It was a difficult song to sing, but in the end he did a magnificent job…It was interesting: George never seemed to get cold feet doing backing vocals, but whenever he had to do a lead vocal, he’d lose his confidence.

Geoff Emerick (who didn’t engineer this session, but seems to have been present) – From “Here, There and Everywhere: My Life Recording the Music of The Beatles“, 2006

Paul then added backing vocals; and Ringo some additional cymbals and handclaps onto track four, erasing John Lennon’s piano performance from the original rhythm track.

Lewisohn noted that Harrison, McCartney and Starr added handclaps to Something during this session, but audio evidence supports the addition of both drums (cymbals only) and handclaps to the track. As the parts do not overlap, it is likely that Starr performed both.

From “The Beatles Recording Reference Manual – Volume 5” by Jerry Hammack

Two reduction mixes were then made, to end the day. “Something” would receive its final (orchestral) overdubs on August 15.

Last updated on December 25, 2021

Songs recorded


1.

Here Comes The Sun

Written by George Harrison

Recording • SI onto take 15


2.

Something

Written by George Harrison

Recording • SI onto take 36


3.

Something

Written by George Harrison

Tape copying • Tape reduction take 36 into take 38


4.

Something

Written by George Harrison

Tape copying • Tape reduction take 36 into take 39

Staff

Musicians on "Something"

Paul McCartney:
Backing vocals
Ringo Starr:
Handclaps, Cymbals
George Harrison:
Lead vocals

Musicians on "Here Comes The Sun"

Paul McCartney:
Handclaps
Ringo Starr:
Handclaps
George Harrison:
Handclaps, Harmonium

Production staff

George Martin:
Producer
Phil McDonald:
Engineer
Alan Parsons:
Second engineer

Going further


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!

Shop on Amazon


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.

Read more on The Beatles Bible

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