The Beatles started off being as much of a boy band than anyone, but ended up prophets, broken, legends. The Beatles, as a concept, are so influential and impossible to follow up that, as one music critic once told me, they might be the best and the worst thing that ever happened to music – nobody will ever top them, so let’s take a look at “She Loves You,” their 4th US single, and 2nd #1.
1. “She Loves You” is The Beatles’ all-time best-selling single in the UK based on information compiled by The Official Charts Company.
2. In 2000, Paul McCartney said it began with the song Bobby Rydell’s song “Forget Him” and the call and response pattern, and that “as often happens, you think of one song when you write another … I’d planned an ‘answering song’ where a couple of us would sing ‘she loves you’ and the other ones would answer ‘yeah yeah’. We decided that was a crummy idea but at least we then had the idea of a song called ‘She Loves You’. So John and I sat in the hotel bedroom for a few hours and wrote it — John and I, sitting on twin beds with guitars.”
3. Even though The Beatles wrote 51 songs with “You” in the title, including this one, the lyrics were not written in the first person; instead the narrator functions as a friendly go-between for estranged lovers:
You think you lost your love,
Well, I saw her yesterday.
It’s you she’s thinking of –
And she told me what to say.
She says she loves you …
4. George Martin, the Beatles’ producer, didn’t like the major sixth chord that ends the song, an idea suggested by George Harrison. In Keith Badman’s The Beatles Off The Record Martin says, “They sort of finished on this curious singing chord which was a major sixth, with George [Harrison] doing the sixth and the others doing the third and fifth in the chord. It was just like a Glenn Miller arrangement.” McCartney later reflected: “We took it to George Martin and sang ‘She loves you, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeeeeeaah …’ and that tight little sixth cluster we had at the end. George [Martin] said: ‘It’s very corny, I would never end on a sixth’. But we said ‘It’s such a great sound, it doesn’t matter'”.
5. The German division of EMI (the parent of the Beatles’ British record label Parlophone Records) decided that the only way to sell Beatles records in Germany would be to re-record them in the German language. The band didn’t want to do this, but were asked by George Martin to comply, recording “Sie Liebt Dich” on 29 January 1964, along with “Komm, Gib Mir Deine Hand” (“I Want To Hold Your Hand” at the Pathe Marconi Studios in Paris.