Recording "On Our Way Home"

Late April 1969 • For Mortimer

Album Songs recorded during this session officially appear on the On Our Way Home Official album.
Studio:
Trident Studios, London, UK

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About

The Beatles recorded the track “Two Of Us” during the “Get Back” sessions in January 1969, under the working title of “On Our Way Home” or “Two Of Us On Our Way Home“.

It would be released on the “Let It Be” album in 1970, but in April 1969, Paul McCartney decided to give the song away to a young band, Mortimer, signed by Apple Records.

Mortimer recorded “On Our Way Home” and named their upcoming album after this song. Unfortunately, the album remained unreleased due to some change of priorities at Apple. It would however be released in 2017, 48 years after its recording!

McCartney popped in on us – he used to drop in and see how things were going with all the artists that were signed to Apple – and we had just recorded a song, “You Don’t Say You Love Me” and Peter thought that it might be the single, so he played it to Paul. Paul said he liked it but said, “I don’t know if it’s a single”. Paul noticed that we played a lot of acoustics and he said “I’ve got a song I think you guys would be perfect for”, and he played us “Two Of Us”, which was then still called “On Our Way Home”. He played us an acetate of him and John playing it on acoustic guitars. They were joking together like The Everly Brothers saying, “Take it, Phil” and things like that. It was nice, but honestly, I don’t think any of us thought that it was a single. But the fact that Paul gave it to us and that Peter said “Let’s go and try it”, we went and recorded it.

Tom Smith – From the liner notes of “On Our Way Home”, 2017

Asher and Mortimer dutifully returned to Trident to record “On Our Way Home” and the song was completed and mastered on 1st May. Given the acoustic foundation of Mortimer’s sound, it was obvious why McCartney thought that the song would be ideal for the group, but the idea sounded better in concept than on tape. Mortimer’s arrangement – which included a synthesizer part played by Mike Vickers – smoothed out the song’s rough edges but their performance failed to match the charm of The Beatles’ demo. Tony Van Benschoten recalls that “the three of us always felt unhappy about it, we felt that we had let Paul down“.

From the liner notes of “On Our Way Home”, 2017

New Apple label signing is a three-piece American “acoustic” group, Mortimer, who will have a Paul McCartney song from the next Beatles’ album released before the official LP date. The song is title “On Our Way Home” – and this will be the first time the Beatles have permitted a pre-release single of one of their compositions for some years.

From New Musical Express, June 7, 1969
From New Musical Express, June 7, 1969

Paul’s specially penned new number “On Our Way Home” is to be on the top deck of a single to launch Apple’s American teenage trio Mortimer. The three New York boys – Guy Masson, Tony Van Benschoten and Tom Smith – play acoustic guitars and conga drums. Their Apple single will be issued at the end of this month or early in July. It is being delayed so that it goes into the shops just before the Beatles’ next LP album – which will also carry the Beatles’ own version of “On Our Way Home”

From the Beatles Monthly Book, N°71, June 1969
From the Beatles Monthly Book, N°71, June 1969

Last updated on December 10, 2021

Songs recorded


1.

Two Of Us

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • This song was given to Mortimer by Paul McCartney, and was recorded by The Beatles as "Two Of Us".

Album Officially released on On Our Way Home

Staff

Musicians

Tom Smith:
Vocals, Guitar
Tony Van Benschoten:
Guitar, Vocals, Bass
Guy Masson:
Drums, Percussion, Vocals

Production staff

Peter Asher:
Producer
Barry Sheffield:
Recording engineer

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