The Night Before

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Album This song officially appears on the Help! (Mono) LP.
Timeline This song has been officially released in 1965

Master album


Related sessions

This song has been recorded during the following studio sessions


"Help!" Session #3

Feb 17, 1965


"Help!" Session #4

Feb 18, 1965


"Help!" Session #7

Feb 23, 1965


"Help!" Session #12

Apr 18, 1965

Spread the love! If you like what you are seeing, share it on social networks and let others know about The Paul McCartney Project.

Song facts

From Wikipedia:

“The Night Before” is a song by the English rock band the Beatles from their 1965 film Help and accompanying album Help! The song was written by Paul McCartney and credited to Lennon–McCartney.

Composition and recording

John Lennon plays a Hohner Pianet electric piano throughout the song. The verses have a call and response structure. McCartney’s lead vocal alternates with Lennon and George Harrison’s harmony, singing the chorus “Ahhh, the night before …“, the whole being alternated with a second melody. In the opinion of musicologist Walter Everett, had the Beatles recorded “The Night Before” at a slower tempo, it “could have been a Kinks or Animals song”.

The Beatles recorded the song at EMI Studios (now Abbey Road Studios) in London on 17 February 1965. The band achieved a satisfactory rhythm track after two takes, and then overdubbed the vocals, lead guitar parts and maracas. The guitar solo over the third verse is repeated in part over the coda. Among Beatles biographers, Ian MacDonald considers that the playing is more in McCartney’s style, while Kenneth Womack credits only McCartney as the soloist and lists Harrison on rhythm guitar, playing his Gretsch Tennessean. However, the solos were performed by Harrison and McCartney together. Lennon later recalled that Harrison and McCartney played “the same break exactly, both playing but in different octaves”.

Film performance

For the film Help!, the Beatles performed “The Night Before” on location at Salisbury Plain. Just as the song finishes, a bomb explodes. The scene was filmed in the shadow of Stonehenge.

Live performances

The Beatles performed “The Night Before” during their final BBC radio session, on 26 May 1965. Titled The Beatles Invite You to Take a Ticket to Ride, this performance was broadcast on the BBC Light Programme on 7 June that year.

McCartney played the song on 15 July 2011 at Yankee Stadium, stating from the stage that it was the first time he had performed the song in concert. […]

From The Usenet Guide to Beatles Recording Variations:

[a] mono 18 Feb 1965.
UK: Parlophone PMC 1255 Help! 1965.

[b] stereo 23 Feb 1965.
UK: Parlophone PCS 3071 Help! 1965.
US: Capitol SMAS 2386 Help! 1965.

[b1] mono made from [b] 1965, by Capitol.
US: Capitol MAS 2386 Help! 1965.

[c] stereo 1987.
CD: EMI CDP 7 46439 2 Help! 1987.

Last updated on May 9, 2021

Lyrics

We said our goodbyes, ah, the night before
Love was in your eyes, ah, the night before
Now today I find you have changed your mind
Treat me like you did the night before

Were you telling lies, ah, the night before?
Was I so unwise, ah, the night before?
When I held you near you were so sincere
Treat me like you did the night before

Last night is a night I will remember you by
When I think of things we did it makes me wanna cry

We said our goodbye, ah, the night before
Love was in your eyes, ah, the night before
Now today I find you have changed your mind
Treat me like you did the night before

When I held you near you were so sincere
Treat me like you did the night before

Last night is a night I will remember you by
When I think of things we did it makes me wanna cry

Were you telling lies, ah, the night before?
Was I so unwise, ah, the night before?
When I held you near you were so sincere
Treat me like you did the night before
Like the night before

Officially appears on


Help! (Mono)

LP • Released in 1965

2:35 • Studio versionA • Mono

Paul McCartney :
Bass, Lead guitar, Vocals
Ringo Starr :
Drums, Percussion
John Lennon :
Electric piano, Harmony vocals
George Harrison :
Harmony vocals, Lead guitar
George Martin :
Producer
Norman Smith :
Recording engineer

Session Recording:
Feb 17, 1965
Studio :
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road

Session Mixing:
Feb 18, 1965
Studio :
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road


Help! (US - Mono)

Official album • Released in 1965

2:36 • Studio versionB1 • Mono • Mono made from [B] by Capitol

Paul McCartney :
Bass, Lead guitar, Vocals
Ringo Starr :
Drums, Percussion
John Lennon :
Electric piano, Harmony vocals
George Harrison :
Harmony vocals, Lead guitar
George Martin :
Producer
Norman Smith :
Recording engineer

Session Recording:
Feb 17, 1965
Studio :
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road

Session Mixing:
Feb 23, 1965
Studio :
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road


Help! (US - Stereo)

Official album • Released in 1965

2:37 • Studio versionB • Stereo

Paul McCartney :
Bass, Lead guitar, Vocals
Ringo Starr :
Drums, Percussion
John Lennon :
Electric piano, Harmony vocals
George Harrison :
Harmony vocals, Lead guitar
George Martin :
Producer
Norman Smith :
Recording engineer

Session Recording:
Feb 17, 1965
Studio :
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road

Session Mixing:
Feb 23, 1965
Studio :
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road


Help! (Stereo)

LP • Released in 1965

2:35 • Studio versionB • Stereo

Paul McCartney :
Bass, Lead guitar, Vocals
Ringo Starr :
Drums, Percussion
John Lennon :
Electric piano, Harmony vocals
George Harrison :
Harmony vocals, Lead guitar
George Martin :
Producer
Norman Smith :
Recording engineer

Session Recording:
Feb 17, 1965
Studio :
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road

Session Mixing:
Feb 23, 1965
Studio :
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road


Help! (1987 mix)

Official album • Released in 1987

2:35 • Studio versionC • Stereo • 1987 mix

Paul McCartney :
Bass, Lead guitar, Vocals
Ringo Starr :
Drums, Percussion
John Lennon :
Electric piano, Harmony vocals
George Harrison :
Harmony vocals, Lead guitar
George Martin :
1987 mix, Producer
Norman Smith :
Recording engineer

Session Recording:
Feb 17, 1965
Studio :
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road


Help! (US - 2006 remaster)

Official album • Released in 2006

2:37 • Studio versionB2006 • Stereo • 2006 remaster

Paul McCartney :
Bass, Lead guitar, Vocals
Ringo Starr :
Drums, Percussion
John Lennon :
Electric piano, Harmony vocals
George Harrison :
Harmony vocals, Lead guitar
George Martin :
Producer
Norman Smith :
Recording engineer
Ted Jensen :
Remastering

Session Recording:
Feb 17, 1965
Studio :
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road

Session Mixing:
Feb 23, 1965
Studio :
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road


Help! (US - 2006 remaster)

Official album • Released in 2006

2:36 • Studio versionB1.2006 • Mono • 2006 remaster

Paul McCartney :
Bass, Lead guitar, Vocals
Ringo Starr :
Drums, Percussion
John Lennon :
Electric piano, Harmony vocals
George Harrison :
Harmony vocals, Lead guitar
George Martin :
Producer
Norman Smith :
Recording engineer
Ted Jensen :
Remastering

Session Recording:
Feb 17, 1965
Studio :
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road

Session Mixing:
Feb 23, 1965
Studio :
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road


Help! (Mono - 2009 remaster)

Official album • Released in 2009

2:35 • Studio versionA2009 • Mono • 2009 mono remaster

Paul McCartney :
Bass, Lead guitar, Vocals
Ringo Starr :
Drums, Percussion
John Lennon :
Electric piano, Harmony vocals
George Harrison :
Harmony vocals, Lead guitar
George Martin :
Producer
Norman Smith :
Recording engineer
Paul Hicks :
Remastering
Guy Massey :
Remastering
Steve Rooke :
Remastering
Sean Magee :
Remastering
Allan Rouse :
Project co-ordinator

Session Recording:
Feb 17, 1965
Studio :
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road

Session Mixing:
Feb 18, 1965
Studio :
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road


Help! (Mono - 2009 remaster)

Official album • Released in 2009

2:35 • Studio versionB2009 • Stereo • 2009 stereo remaster

Paul McCartney :
Bass, Lead guitar, Vocals
Ringo Starr :
Drums, Percussion
John Lennon :
Electric piano, Harmony vocals
George Harrison :
Harmony vocals, Lead guitar
George Martin :
Producer
Norman Smith :
Recording engineer
Paul Hicks :
Remastering
Guy Massey :
Remastering
Steve Rooke :
Remastering
Sean Magee :
Remastering
Allan Rouse :
Project co-ordinator

Session Recording:
Feb 17, 1965
Studio :
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road

Session Mixing:
Feb 23, 1965
Studio :
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road


Help! (Stereo - 2009 remaster)

Official album • Released in 2009

2:35 • Studio versionC2009 • Stereo • 2009 stereo remaster

Paul McCartney :
Bass, Lead guitar, Vocals
Ringo Starr :
Drums, Percussion
John Lennon :
Electric piano, Harmony vocals
George Harrison :
Harmony vocals, Lead guitar
George Martin :
1987 mix, Producer
Norman Smith :
Recording engineer
Guy Massey :
Remastering
Steve Rooke :
Remastering
Allan Rouse :
Project co-ordinator

Session Recording:
Feb 17, 1965
Studio :
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road


Live performances

“The Night Before” has been played in 38 concerts and 1 soundchecks.

Latest concerts where The Night Before has been played







Contribute!

Have you spotted an error on the page? Do you want to suggest new content? Or do you simply want to leave a comment ? Please use the form below!

Your comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.