- Album Songs recorded during this session officially appear on the The Beatles (Mono) LP.
- Timeline More from year 1968
- EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road
Some songs from this session appear on:
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Having spent the three past days recording “Glass Onion“, The Beatles moved on and started working on the next track, the Paul McCartney ballad “I Will“. They recorded 67 takes of the basic track, and chose take 65 at the best one.
Recording for “I Will” took place at EMI Studios in London on 16 September 1968, with McCartney completing overdubs the following day. The basic track required 67 takes. George Harrison was not present at the session.
During take 19, McCartney ad-libbed an untitled song. Referred to as “Can you take me back”, a 28-second segment of this ended up on side four of The Beatles, at the end of “Cry Baby Cry“, as what author Ian MacDonald described as “a sinister introduction to ‘Revolution 9‘”.
In take 29, McCartney, as an ad-lib, sung “won’t” in place of “will” during the first verse before John Lennon replies, “Yes you will.” McCartney chuckles after this ad-lib and then the song ends at this point. This take was included in the expanded box set of The Beatles released in 2018.
Interestingly, the session turned into a jam on a few occasions, and through the Anthology project and “The Beatles” super deluxe edition released in 2019, we got access to some of those ad-lib songs – the full version of “Can You Take Me Back“, a rendition of Paul’s tune for Cilla Black, “Step Inside Love“, a jam named “Los Paranoias“, and a cover of the classic popular song “Blue Moon“.
About “Step Inside Love” and “Los Paranoias“, from Anthology 3 liner notes:
During a light-hearted recording session for I Will, Paul frequently slipped into “jamming” mode, sometimes at the behest of John and Ringo who were sitting close at hand providing the percussion that augmented his acoustic guitar track. On of the off-the-cuff pieces was Step Inside Love – written by Paul in 1967 expressly for Cilla Black to sing as the theme tune for her first TV series, Cilla, that began on the BBC on 30 January 1968. The Beatles never recorded a formal studio recording of the song, and this version, performed by the composer many months after Cilla’s recording, was simply an ad-lib re-acquaintance with the piece. Then, prompted by one of John’s comments, and preserving the frivolity of the moment, Paul led the other Beatles into a jam, Los Paranoias.
At the end of the session, they briefly returned to “Glass Onion” and added an overdub in the form of a brief phrase on recorders played by Paul McCartney and producer Chris Thomas.
As George Martin was on holidays for most of September 1968, Chris Thomas produced this session.
The work on “I Will” would continue the day after.
Last updated on May 27, 2021
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.
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