The Paul McCartney Project

You Never Give Me Your Money

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Album This song officially appears on the Abbey Road Official album.
Timeline This song has been officially released in 1969
Sessions This song has been recorded during the following sessions

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Song facts

From Wikipedia:

You Never Give Me Your Money” is a song by the Beatles, appearing on their 1969 album Abbey Road. It was written by Paul McCartney (though credited to Lennon–McCartney) and documented the financial and personal difficulties facing the band. The track is the first track of the medley on side two of Abbey Road and was recorded in stages between May and August 1969.

The song was the first one to be recorded for the medley, which was conceived by McCartney and producer George Martin as a finale for the Beatles’ career. The backing track was recorded at Olympic Sound Studios in Barnes, London, but the remainder of overdubs occurred at Abbey Road Studios. Musically, the song is made up of a suite of various segments, ranging from a piano ballad at the beginning through to guitar arpeggios at the end.

Background

The song was written by McCartney when he was staying with new wife Linda in New York in March 1969, shortly after the Get Back sessions that ultimately resulted in Let It Be. John Lennon and McCartney were at risk of losing overall control of Northern Songs, the company that published their songs, after ATV Music bought a majority share. McCartney had been largely responsible for the group’s direction and projects since the death of manager Brian Epstein in 1967, but began to realise that the group dynamic of the Beatles was coming to an end. He was particularly unhappy at the others wanting to draft in manager Allen Klein to help sort out their finances. McCartney later said that the song was written with Klein in mind, saying “it’s basically a song about no faith in the person“. He added that the line “One sweet dream, pack up the bags, get in the limousine” was based on his trips in the country with Linda to get away from the tense atmosphere with the Beatles, though author Walter Everett thought the line was also a nostalgic look at the Beatles’ touring years, which had ended in 1966.

The musical structure came from several song fragments, beginning with a piano ballad and moving to a number of different styles, including boogie-woogie piano, arpeggiated guitars and nursery rhyme. Beatles author Ian MacDonald speculated that the guitar arpeggios at the end of the track were influenced by “I Want You (She’s So Heavy)” and the middle section of “Here Comes the Sun“, and the overall structure was inspired by Lennon’s “Happiness Is a Warm Gun” from the previous year’s The Beatles, which also joined unrelated song fragments together.

Realising that Abbey Road could be the group’s last album, McCartney and Martin decided to combine various portions of tracks into a medley, which would act as a climactic finale of the group’s career. McCartney later said that the idea of a song suite was inspired by Keith West’s “Excerpt from A Teenage Opera“. Some musical segments of “You Never Give Me Your Money” were reused for the “Golden Slumbers” / “Carry That Weight” portion of the medley, including the opening verses and later guitar arpeggios.

Recording

The basic backing track was recorded at Olympic Sound Studios in Barnes on 6 May 1969. Recording started at 3pm and went on until 4am the next morning. McCartney sang lead and played piano, Lennon played an Epiphone Casino guitar, George Harrison played a Fender Telecaster guitar fed through a Leslie speaker, and Ringo Starr played drums. The group recorded 36 takes, selecting take 30 as the best, which was made into a rough stereo mix. The basic structure of the song as it appeared on Abbey Road had not been worked out at this stage, and the original recording ran onto a loose jam session, ending up as a fast rock-and-roll instrumental towards the end.

The track was completed in Abbey Road Studios. McCartney overdubbed a lead vocal onto the basic track on 1 July, and further vocals and sound effects were added on 15 July. On 30 July, a reduction mix was made of the original eight track tape, so further overdubs could be made, and a rough mix of the Abbey Road medley was put together. The cross-fade from “You Never Give Me Your Money” into the next track, “Sun King“, proved to be problematic, and the group made several attempts before deciding to merge the songs via an organ note. McCartney completed the instrumental overdubs the next day, on 31 July, by adding a bass guitar part and additional piano overdubs, including some punched-in honky-tonk piano in place of the original.

The final recording session occurred on 5 August, when McCartney made a number of tape loops at Abbey Road, including bells, birds, bubbles and chirping crickets. Martin mixed the track into stereo on 13 August, and made 11 attempts at a final mix, combining the tape loops with the cross-fade into “Sun King“, replacing the earlier organ note. He made another attempt at a final mix on 21 August, and this was used for the finished master. […]

Paul McCartney in "Many Years From Now", by Barry Miles:

This was me directly lambasting Allen Klein’s attitude to us: no money, just funny paper, all promises and it never works out. It’s basically a song about no faith in the person, that found its way into the medley on Abbey Road. John saw the humour in it.

From The Usenet Guide to Beatles Recording Variations:

  • [a] stereo 13 Aug 1969. crossfaded 21 Aug 1969.
    UK: Apple PCS 7088 Abbey Road 1969.
    US: Apple SO-383 Abbey Road 1969.
    CD: EMI CDP 7 46446 2 Abbey Road 1987.

The crossfade joins it to the next song Sun King / Mean Mr Mustard and includes sound effects not part of either song. The sound effects in the join are the Aug 5 additional recording listed above, credited as part of this song but really a separate tape used when the crossfade was done.

Last updated on November 30, 2016

Lyrics

You never give me your money
You only give me your funny paper
And in the middle of negotiations
You break down

I never give you my number
I only give you my situation
And in the middle of investigation
I break down

Out of college, money spent
See no future, pay no rent
All the money's gone, nowhere to go
Penny-jobber got the sack
Monday morning, turning back
Yellow lorry slow, nowhere to go

But oh, that magic feeling
Nowhere to go
Oh, that magic feeling
Nowhere to go
Nowhere to go
Ah, ah, ah

One sweet dream
Pick up the bags and get in the limousine
Soon we'll be away from here
Step on the gas and wipe that tear away

One sweet dream
Came true, today
Came true, today
Came true, today
Yes it did

One, two, three, four, five, six, seven
All good children go to heaven

One, two, three, four, five, six, seven
All good children go to heaven

One, two, three, four, five, six, seven
All good children go to heaven

Officially appears on


Abbey Road

Official album • Released in 1969

4:03 • Studio versionA • Stereo

Paul McCartney:
Backing vocals, Bass, Chimes, Guitar, Piano, Tape loops, Vocals
Ringo Starr:
Drums, Tambourine
John Lennon:
Backing vocals, Guitar
George Harrison:
Backing vocals, Guitar
George Martin:
Producer
Geoff Emerick:
Engineer
Phil McDonald:
Engineer
Glyn Johns:
Engineer

Session Recording:
May 06, 1969
Studio:
Olympic Sound Studios, London

Session Overdubs:
1,15,31 Jul, 5 Aug 1969
Studio:
EMI Studios, Abbey Road

Session Mixing:
Aug 13, 1969
Studio:
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road


Back In The U.S.

Official live • Released in 2002

3:06 • LiveL2 • Medley with "You Never Give Me Your Money"

Paul McCartney:
Executive producer
Performed by:
Paul McCartneyRusty AndersonAbe Laboriel Jr.Paul WickensBrian Ray
David Kahne:
Producer
Michael Brauer:
Engineer
Ricardo Chavarria:
Assistant engineer

Concert From the concert in Tampa, USA on May 15, 2002


Back In The World

Official live • Released in 2003

3:06 • LiveL2 • Medley with "You Never Give Me Your Money"

Paul McCartney:
Executive producer
Performed by:
Paul McCartneyRusty AndersonAbe Laboriel Jr.Paul WickensBrian Ray
David Kahne:
Producer
Michael Brauer:
Engineer
Ricardo Chavarria:
Assistant engineer

Concert From the concert in Tampa, USA on May 15, 2002


Abbey Road (2019)

Official album • Released in 2019

4:03 • Studio versionA2019 • Stereo • 2019 Stereo Mix

Paul McCartney:
Backing vocals, Bass, Chimes, Guitar, Piano, Tape loops, Vocals
Ringo Starr:
Drums, Tambourine
John Lennon:
Backing vocals, Guitar
George Harrison:
Backing vocals, Guitar
George Martin:
Producer
Geoff Emerick:
Engineer
Giles Martin:
Producer
Phil McDonald:
Engineer
Glyn Johns:
Engineer
Sam Okell:
Mix engineer

Session Recording:
May 06, 1969
Studio:
Olympic Sound Studios, London

Session Overdubs:
1,15,31 Jul, 5 Aug 1969
Studio:
EMI Studios, Abbey Road

Session Mixing:
Aug 13, 1969
Studio:
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road


Abbey Road (2019)

Official album • Released in 2019

5:18 • Alternate takeB • Take 36

Giles Martin:
Producer
Sam Okell:
Mix engineer

Session Recording:
May 06, 1969
Studio:
Olympic Sound Studios, London

Bootlegs


Let It Drivin'

Unofficial live

1:24 • Live

Concert From the concert in Oakland, USA on Apr 01, 2002


A Beautiful Evening In Moscow

Unofficial live

3:24 • Soundcheck

Concert From the concert in Moscow, Russia on May 24, 2003




Abbey Road Sessions

Unofficial album

5:58 • Outtake • Take 30 Mono


Live performances

“You Never Give Me Your Money” has been played in 67 concerts and 7 soundchecks.

Latest concerts where “You Never Give Me Your Money” has been played



Dublin • RDS Arena

May 27, 2003 • Part of Back in the World tour






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