The Paul McCartney Project

You Won't See Me

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Album This song officially appears on the Rubber Soul (UK Mono) Official album.
Timeline This song has been officially released in 1965
Sessions This song has been recorded during the following sessions

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Song facts

From Wikipedia:

You Won’t See Me” is a song by the Beatles, from the album Rubber Soul. Though credited to Lennon–McCartney, it was written by Paul McCartney. The song is a rare instance of McCartney singing a lower harmony to John Lennon and George Harrison’s higher harmonies.

History

The song is about a crisis in McCartney’s relationship with his then-girlfriend Jane Asher. She was rejecting him by not returning phone calls and ignoring him — for once, he was in a vulnerable position. The more biting tone of the song marks a change away from his earlier, happier love songs. Musically influenced by the Four Tops’ then-current hit “It’s the Same Old Song“, “You Won’t See Me” was recorded during the last session for Rubber Soul on the night of November 11, 1965. The deadline for completing the album was up and the band needed to record three songs that evening to complete. As a result, they cut the song in only two takes. At 3:22, the song was the longest that The Beatles had recorded to that point and marked a trend by Bob Dylan and others at the time to start writing longer songs.

Mal “Organ” Evans (one of The Beatles’ roadies throughout their career) is credited on the album sleeve as having played Hammond organ on this track, his contribution consisting solely of an A note quietly held throughout the last part of the song.

Ringo Starr’s busy drumming during the verses was a style of playing he would further explore on Rain and A Day in the Life.

You Won’t See Me” was never a part of The Beatles’ concert repertoire, but McCartney played the song live during his 2005-06 concert tour.

Personnel

MacDonald commented that Starr added an overdubbed hi-hat part in addition to the hi-hat part played in the basic rhythm track, and that Evans’s organ part was a single A note held throughout the final verse and chorus. […]

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

This was written around two little notes, a very slim phrase, a two-note progression that I had very high on the first two strings of the guitar: the E and the B strings. I had it high up on the high E position, and I just let the note on the B string descend a semitone at a time, and kept the top note the same, and against that I was playing a descending chromatic scale. Then I wrote the tune for You Won’t See Me against it…

To me it was very Motown-flavoured. It’s got a James Jamerson feel. He was the Motown bass player, he was fabulous, the guy who did all those great melodic bass lines. It was him, me and Brian Wilson who were doing melodic bass lines at that time, all from completely different angles, LA, Detroit and London, all picking up on what each other did.

From The Usenet Guide to Beatles Recording Variations:

  • [a] mono 15 Nov 1965.
    UK: Parlophone PMC 1267 Rubber Soul 1965.
    US: Capitol T 2442 Rubber Soul 1965.
    CD: EP Box set 1991.
  • [b] stereo 15 Nov 1965.
    UK: Parlophone PCS 3075 Rubber Soul 1965.
    US: Capitol ST 2442 Rubber Soul 1965.
  • [c] stereo 1987.
    CD: EMI CDP 7 46440 2 Rubber Soul 1987.

[b] fades slightly earlier than [a].

Last updated on July 31, 2018

Lyrics

When I call you up
Your line's engaged
I have had enough
So act your age

We have lost the time
That was so hard to find
And I will lose my mind
If you won't see me
(You won't see me)
You won't see me
(You won't see me)

I don't know why you
Should want to hide
But I can't get through
My hands are tied

I won't want to stay
I don't have much to say
But I can't turn away
And you won't see me
(You won't see me)
You won't see me
(You won't see me)

Time after time
You refuse to even listen
I wouldn't mind
If I knew what I was missing

Though the days are few
They're filled with tears
And since I lost you
It feels like years

Yes, it seems so long
Girl, since you've been gone
And I just can't go on
If you won't see me
(You won't see me)
You won't see me
(You won't see me)

Time after time
You refuse to even listen
I wouldn't mind
If I knew what I was missing

Though the days are few
They're filled with tears
And since I lost you
It feels like years

Yes, it seems so long
Girl, since you've been gone
And I just can't go on
If you won't see me
(You won't see me)
You won't see me
(You won't see me)

Officially appears on


Rubber Soul (UK Mono)

Official album • Released in 1965

3:18 • Studio versionA • Mono

Paul McCartney:
Bass, Piano, Vocals
Ringo Starr:
Drums
John Lennon:
Backing vocals
George Harrison:
Backing vocals, Rhythm guitar, Tambourine
George Martin:
Producer
Norman Smith:
Engineer
Mal Evans:
Hammond organ

Session Recording:
Nov 11, 1965
Studio:
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road

Session Mixing:
Nov 15, 1965
Studio:
EMI Studios, Studio One, Abbey Road


Rubber Soul (US Mono)

Official album • Released in 1965

3:27 • Studio versionA • Mono

Paul McCartney:
Bass, Piano, Vocals
Ringo Starr:
Drums
John Lennon:
Backing vocals
George Harrison:
Backing vocals, Rhythm guitar, Tambourine
George Martin:
Producer
Norman Smith:
Engineer
Mal Evans:
Hammond organ

Session Recording:
Nov 11, 1965

Session Mixing:
Nov 15, 1965
Studio:
EMI Studios, Studio One, Abbey Road


Rubber Soul (US Stereo)

Official album • Released in 1965

3:21 • Studio versionB • Stereo

Paul McCartney:
Bass, Piano, Vocals
Ringo Starr:
Drums
John Lennon:
Backing vocals
George Harrison:
Backing vocals, Rhythm guitar, Tambourine
George Martin:
Producer
Norman Smith:
Engineer
Mal Evans:
Hammond organ

Session Recording:
Nov 11, 1965
Studio:
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road

Session Mixing:
Nov 15, 1965
Studio:
EMI Studios, Studio One, Abbey Road


Rubber Soul (UK Stereo)

Official album • Released in 1965

3:18 • Studio versionB • Stereo

Paul McCartney:
Bass, Piano, Vocals
Ringo Starr:
Drums
John Lennon:
Backing vocals
George Harrison:
Backing vocals, Rhythm guitar, Tambourine
George Martin:
Producer
Norman Smith:
Engineer
Mal Evans:
Hammond organ

Session Recording:
Nov 11, 1965
Studio:
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road

Session Mixing:
Nov 15, 1965
Studio:
EMI Studios, Studio One, Abbey Road


Nowhere Man

EP • Released in 1966

3:23 • Studio versionA • Mono

Paul McCartney:
Bass, Piano, Vocals
Ringo Starr:
Drums
John Lennon:
Backing vocals
George Harrison:
Backing vocals, Rhythm guitar, Tambourine
George Martin:
Producer
Norman Smith:
Engineer
Mal Evans:
Hammond organ

Session Recording:
Nov 11, 1965

Session Mixing:
Nov 15, 1965
Studio:
EMI Studios, Studio One, Abbey Road

Bootlegs





Rubber Soul - Studio Sessions - Back To Basics

Unofficial album • Released in 2012

3:29 • Alternate take • (Rockband Mix) (stereo)


The Space Within Us - Ultimate Archive Collection

Unofficial live • Released in 2015

3:22 • Live


Live performances

“You Won't See Me” has been played in 84 concerts.

Latest concerts where “You Won't See Me” has been played



Sydney • Qudos Bank Arena

Dec 12, 2017 • Part of One On One Tour


Sydney • Qudos Bank Arena

Dec 11, 2017 • Part of One On One Tour



Melbourne • AAMI Park

Dec 06, 2017 • Part of One On One Tour



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