Recording "I'm Only Sleeping" and mixing "And Your Bird Can Sing", "Taxman"...

Wednesday, April 27, 1966 • For The Beatles

Part of


Recording "Revolver"

April 6 - June 22, 1966 • Songs recorded during this session appear on Revolver (UK Mono)

Album Songs recorded during this session officially appear on the Revolver (UK Mono) LP.
Studio:
EMI Studios, Studio Three, Abbey Road

Master release


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About

This was the fourteenth day of the recording sessions for the “Revolver” album. There were two sessions on this day – a mixing session and a recording session focused on a new track, “I’m Only Sleeping“.


From 6 pm to 11:30 pm, efforts were made to mix in mono three recently recorded tracks, “Taxman“, “And Your Bird Can Sing” and “Tomorrow Never Knows“. None of the mixes for “Taxman” and “And Your Bird Can Sing” would ever be released.

Nine attempts at mixing “Tomorrow Never Knows” (labelled remix 1 to remix 9) were done. On June 6, 1966, three further attempts (remix 10 to 12) were done. Remix Mono 11 was released on the first UK pressing of “Revolver“, but George Martin changed his mind about the best version of the song and decided to use Remix Mono 8 (from this day) for all further mono releases.

[The Beatles] found that they could get more control of the sound that they wanted by actually being there for a mix.

Phil McDonald – From The Complete Beatles Recording Sessions by Mark Lewisohn, 2004

From 11:30 pm to 3 am, The Beatles started working on “I’m Only Sleeping” by recording eleven takes of the rhythm track. The early takes had John Lennon on acoustic guitar and lead vocals, George Harrison on tambourine, Paul McCartney on backing vocals and Ringo Starr on bongos. Later takes, including take 11, had John Lennon on acoustic guitar, Paul McCartney on bass and Ringo Starr on drums.

With an air of experimentation running high in the studio, engineer Geoff Emerick recorded this rhythm track at 56 cycles per second with the intention of it sounding more labored and sleepy-sounding when played back at the normal 50 cycles. The eleventh take was found to be best and, by 3 am, it was time for the group to go home and do some actual “sleeping.”

From beatlesebooks.com

Take 11 would be considered the best version, not before a remake was attempted on April 29. Overdubs would be added onto it on April 29, May 5 and May 6, 1966.


From Facebook – 27 April 1966 Photo by Robert Freeman © Apple Corps Ltd. (https://www.thebeatles.com/)
From Facebook – 27 April 1966 Photo by Robert Freeman © Apple Corps Ltd. (https://www.thebeatles.com/)

Last updated on October 21, 2022

Songs recorded


1.

Taxman

Written by George Harrison

Recording • Mono mixing - Remix 1 from take 12


2.

And Your Bird Can Sing

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Mono mixing - Remix 6 from take 10


3.

Tomorrow Never Knows

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Mono mixing - Remix 1 from take 3


4.

Tomorrow Never Knows

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Mono mixing - Remix 2 from take 3


5.

Tomorrow Never Knows

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Mono mixing - Remix 3 from take 3


6.

Tomorrow Never Knows

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Mono mixing - Remix 4 from take 3


7.

Tomorrow Never Knows

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Mono mixing - Remix 5 from take 3


8.

Tomorrow Never Knows

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Mono mixing - Remix 6 from take 3


9.

Tomorrow Never Knows

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Mono mixing - Remix 7 from take 3


10.

Tomorrow Never Knows

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Mono mixing - Remix 8 from take 3

Album Officially released on Revolver (UK Mono)


11.

Tomorrow Never Knows

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Mono mixing - Remix 9 from take 3


12.

I'm Only Sleeping

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 1


13.

I'm Only Sleeping

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 2


14.

I'm Only Sleeping

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 3


15.

I'm Only Sleeping

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 4


16.

I'm Only Sleeping

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 5


17.

I'm Only Sleeping

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 6


18.

I'm Only Sleeping

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 7


19.

I'm Only Sleeping

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 8


20.

I'm Only Sleeping

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 9


21.

I'm Only Sleeping

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 10


22.

I'm Only Sleeping

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • Take 11

Staff

Musicians on "I'm Only Sleeping"

Paul McCartney:
Bass
Ringo Starr:
Drums
John Lennon:
Acoustic guitar

Production staff

George Martin:
Producer
Geoff Emerick:
Engineer
Phil McDonald:
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


The Beatles Recording Reference Manual - Volume 2 - Help! through Revolver (1965-1966)

The second book of the Association for Recorded Sound Collections (ARSC)-nominated series, "The Beatles Recording Reference Manual: Volume 2: Help! through Revolver (1965-1966)" follows the evolution of the band from the end of Beatlemania with "Help!" through the introspection of "Rubber Soul" up to the sonic revolution of "Revolver". From the first take to the final remix, discover the making of the greatest recordings of all time.

Through extensive, fully-documented research, these books fill an important gap left by all other Beatles books published to date and provide a unique view into the recordings of the world's most successful pop music act.

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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