The Paul McCartney Project

In Spite Of All The Danger

Album This song officially appears on the In Spite Of All The Danger / That'll Be The Day Single.
Timeline This song has been officially released in 1995
Sessions This song has been recorded during the following sessions

Related songs

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Song facts

From Wikipedia:

In Spite of All the Danger” is one of the first songs recorded by The Quarrymen, then composed of John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison, pianist John Lowe and drummer Colin Hanton.

The song was written by McCartney and Harrison and is the only song to credit the two alone. It is believed to have been recorded on Saturday 12 July 1958 (three days before Lennon’s mother’s death). However, that recording date is disputed by the group. The recording was made at Percy Phillips’ home studio in Liverpool, and cost 17 shillings and six pence (87.5p).

Composition

Along with their cover of Buddy Holly’s “That’ll Be the Day” recorded at the same session, these songs were the first recordings made by what would become The Beatles. The only other previous recording of the Quarrymen in performance was a reel-to-reel tape-recording made by an audience member on 6 July 1957, during the Quarrymen’s last set for the 1957 Rose Queen garden fête at St. Peter’s Church, Woolton, Liverpool. This was made on the very day on which McCartney first met Lennon, but before he was a member of the group.

McCartney has claimed he wrote the song: “‘In Spite Of All The Danger’ was actually written by me and George played the guitar solo! We were mates and nobody was into copyrights and publishing, nobody understood — we actually used to think when we came down to London that songs belonged to everyone…. I remember we all went down on the bus with our instruments – amps and guitars – and the drummer went separately. We waited in the little waiting room outside while somebody else made their demo and then it was our turn. We just went into the room, hardly saw the fella because he was next door in a little control booth. “OK, what are you going to do?” We ran through it very quickly, quarter of an hour, and it was all over. I think we paid £5 for that. It was me, John, George, Colin Hanton on drums and Duff Lowe, five of us … I sang the lead, I think so anyway. It was my song. It’s very similar to an Elvis song. It’s me doing an Elvis … I’m a bit loath to say which! … It was one that I’d heard at scout camp when I was younger and I’d loved it.

Most commentators conclude that the Presley song used by McCartney as a model was “Tryin’ to Get to You“, which was included in Elvis’s first UK album, back in 1956. Chris Ingram says it was “clearly inspired” by it, and John C. Winn says it was “fashioned after” it.

Musical structure

The Song is in the key of E and follows a standard I (E chord)-I7-IV (A chord)-V7 (B7 chord)-I-IV-I progression. Here the harmonic development initially arises with the move (in bar 5 on “I’ll do anything for you“) to a subdominant or IV (A chord built on the 4th degree of the E major scale), but without the intervening range of chords prolonging harmonic tension that so characterised later Beatles songwriting. The resolution back to the tonic comes as the V chord (B7 in bar 8 on “you want me to“) shifts to the I (E chord on “true to me“).

History of the recording

The tape was wiped after being pressed on a 10-inch disc. Only one copy of the “That’ll Be the Day” and “In Spite of All the Danger” recordings was made, and each band member kept the acetate disc for a week. Lowe was the last to have it, keeping it for nearly 25 years. In 1981, Lowe attempted to sell it at auction, but McCartney intervened and purchased it from him. McCartney had engineers restore as much of the record’s sound quality as possible and then made approximately 50 copies of the single that he gave as personal gifts to family and friends. In 2004, Record Collector magazine named the original pressing as the most valuable record in existence, estimating its worth at £100,000, with the 1981 copies made by McCartney coming in second on the list at £10,000 each.

Public release

In Spite of All the Danger” was not released to the public until it appeared on 1995’s Anthology 1 collection (see 1995 in music) along with “That’ll Be the Day“.

McCartney played the song throughout his 2005 world tour and is playing it again on his 2016/2017 tour. […]

Last updated on May 20, 2017

Lyrics

In spite of all the danger
In spite of all that may be
I'll do anything for you
Anything you want me to
If you'll be true to me

In spite of all the heartache
That you may cause me
I'll do anything for you
Anything you want me to
If you'll be true to me

I'll look after you
Like I've never done before
I'll keep all the others
From knocking at your door

In spite of all the danger
In spite of all that may be
I'll do anything for you
Anything you want me to
If you'll be true to me

In spite of all the heartache
That you may cause me
I'll do anything for you
Anything you want me to
If you'll be true to me

I'll do anything for you
Anything you want me to
If you'll be true to me

Officially appears on


In Spite Of All The Danger / That'll Be The Day

Single • Released in 1958

Studio versionA

Paul McCartney:
Backing vocals, Guitar
John Lennon:
Guitar, Vocals
George Harrison:
Backing vocals, Guitar
Percy F Phillips:
Engineer
John 'Duff' Lowe:
Piano
Colin Hanton:
Drums

Session Recording:
Jul 12, 1958
Studio:
Phillips Sound Recording Service


Anthology 1

Official album • Released in 1995

2:45 • Studio versionA

Paul McCartney:
Backing vocals, Guitar
John Lennon:
Guitar, Vocals
George Harrison:
Backing vocals, Guitar
Percy F Phillips:
Engineer
John 'Duff' Lowe:
Piano
Colin Hanton:
Drums

Session Recording:
Jul 12, 1958
Studio:
Phillips Sound Recording Service

Live performances

“In Spite Of All The Danger” has been played in 142 concerts and 1 soundchecks.

Latest concerts where “In Spite Of All The Danger” has been played


Glasgow • SSE Hydro

Dec 14, 2018 • Part of Freshen Up Tour


Liverpool • Echo Arena

Dec 12, 2018 • Part of Freshen Up Tour




Krakow • Tauron Arena

Dec 03, 2018 • Part of Freshen Up Tour



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