Recording and mixing "Taxman", recording "For No One"

Monday, May 16, 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 Two, Abbey Road

Master release


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About

This was the twentieth day of the recording sessions for the “Revolver” album. During the eleven-hour long session (from 2:30 pm to 1:30 am), overdubs were added onto George Harrison’s “Taxman” and Paul McCartney’s “For No One“. There were also some mixing and tape-copying activities to build a master reel and see how the album was starting to take shape.


Taxman” had been recorded on April 21 and April 22, 1966. On this day, The Beatles added the final touch, by recording Paul McCartney’s spoken intro “one, two, three, four, one two“.

In the background [of this spoken intro] you hear a cough and stray guitar notes amongst other strange noises. McCartney describes these as sounds that were on the tape, Lennon adding that he “thought (the listeners) would like to hear it.” This unusual introduction ends as we hear Paul’s original count-down to the song from the rhythm track in the background.

From beatlesebooks.com

Four mono mixes were then created, all from take 12, but none were ever used.


The basic track of “For No One” and the first overdubs had been recorded on May 9, 1966. On this day, Paul McCartney overdubbed his lead vocals onto take 10. The tape was slowed to 47.5 cycles rather than the usual 50, which made the vocals higher and faster upon playback.

Some tape reductions were then made, to free up two tracks on the four-track tape. Those were numbered take 13 and take 14 (there were strangely no takes 11 and 12).

[The tape reduction remix] also utilized frequency control, recorded at a slower than normal tape speed, slowing the tempo and lowering the pitch of the entire track by nearly a semitone. Between the applications of varispeed on the lead vocal and tape reduction remix, McCartney’s lead vocal ended up back at its original performance tempo and pitch.

From The Beatles Recording Reference Manual – Volume 2 – Help! through Revolver (1965-1966) by Jerry Hammack, 2021

Onto take 14, Paul added his bass part and Ringo Starr played the tambourine. Take 14 would also receive a French horn overdub on May 19, 1966.

Last updated on October 18, 2022

Songs recorded


1.

Taxman

Written by George Harrison

Recording • SI onto take 12


2.

Love You To

Written by George Harrison

Tape copying • Copies of remix mono 3, numbered mono remixes 4 and 5


3.

Taxman

Written by George Harrison

Mixing • Mono mixing - Remix 2 from take 12


4.

Taxman

Written by George Harrison

Mixing • Mono mixing - Remix 3 from take 12


5.

Taxman

Written by George Harrison

Mixing • Mono mixing - Remix 4 from take 12


6.

Taxman

Written by George Harrison

Mixing • Mono mixing - Remix 5 from take 12


7.

For No One

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Recording • SI onto take 10


8.

For No One

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Tape copying • Tape reduction take 10 into takes 13 and 14 (no takes numbered 11 or 12)


9.

Taxman

Written by George Harrison

Tape copying • Tape copying of remix mono 4


10.

Love You To

Written by George Harrison

Tape copying • Tape copying of remix mono 5


11.

Tomorrow Never Knows

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Tape copying • Tape copying of remix mono 8

Staff

Musicians on "For No One"

Paul McCartney:
Lead vocals, Bass
Ringo Starr:
Tambourine

Musicians on "Taxman"

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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